Any kind of remodel or renovation is a challenge. Designing, budgeting and executing that which can be exhausting its own, as is hoping to reside in your home when its under construction. For Sarah Kravits, this stress was compounded when she had been diagnosed with breast cancer in the center of her renovation. “Frankly, the renovation supplied a excellent distraction to both of us,” states Kravits, who lives in Northern New Jersey. Kravits recruited the help of family and friends to complete her dream kitchen. Her husband acted as a general contractor, and the contractor, contractor, electrician, and painter were all buddies, too. “They were terrific, and very respectful of what I had been going through,” she states.
After a few months, the renovation was complete, and Kravits’s kitchen was everything she wanted it to be. “I couldn’t even tell you what I love the most in this kitchen,” she states. Inspired by the history of her home and her loved ones, this kitchen is significant to her and her loved ones for a lot of reasons, and is a real work of love.
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For Kravits, the biggest priority was optimizing distance. Before the remodel, the kitchen had a space below the sink for storage, just two cabinets, two drawers.
The area was poorly organized, so Kravits enlisted the help of a friend and architect to redesign kitchen.
By emphasizing wide spaces between the stove and sink, and wall and island unit, the kitchen was simple to maneuver around in and felt much less cramped.
Cabinetry: Custom maple, painted Benjamin Moore Misted Fern
Pulls: Satin Nickel by Merit
Knobs: Satin Nickel from Colonial
Fridge: Samsung, French doorway
Kravits drew inspiration for her kitchen out of her two grandmothers, who invested much of their time in their kitchens. “I grew up a short drive away from among these, and being her only granddaughter, I had been in her kitchen beneath her tutelage all the time,” states Kravits. “Over the past several years, as I thought about what I wanted my kitchen to look like, I envisioned a place where all of the items in her kitchen could seem right at home” In fact, the kitchen table just past the pub is a classic piece from the 1930s from her mother’s childhood home.
Range: 30″ Thermador
Sink: Apron front stainless steel
Lighting: Hudson Valley Lighting
Barstools: Crate & Barrel
Kitchen chairs: Crate & Barrel
Kravits was likewise inspired by the structure of her house itself. Her home was built from the mid-1920s, and creating a kitchen which will feel natural and recall the pre-WWII era was important for her.
She worked with her architect to take design cues in the home’s original molding, flooring and trim. Even old colors of paint revealed by stripping trim and doors was considered from the kitchen design.
“We had additional storage to help us manage the stuff that comes out of nowhere,” Kravits states. “We’re not naturally very good at managing clutter, so I needed places for everything to call home.”
Oven and Microwave: Thermador
Floors: Hickory, finished with Particular Walnut Minwax
Kravits added a simple shelving unit behind their basement doorway. Underneath, she added a slot for extra grocery bags.
The idea came to her if her and her husband were trying to figure out what to do with an embarrassing place right before the basement staircase. In the process of pulling the beadboard off, they noticed a couple inches of space between the board and the walls, that did not go all the way down to the floor.
“I was looking for a place to put all our paper bags, and the concept of a paper bag slot came for me,” she states.
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