Kitchens – French Country Living
“AV Architects – help! We want modern!” That’s what our clients desperately told us. Their old kitchen just wasn’t working for their lifestyle. Plus, the décor was hopelessly outdated and didn’t look good.
Functionally, the kitchen was too widespread and disjointed. They wanted easy access to the back yard, center of all their outdoor entertaining and their children’s activities. A main house entry was through a mudroom, which was misplaced. Everyone dragged dirt throughout the house and it was too cramped for coats and boots.
There was even more disruption because the only place for guests to stand was in front of the door. And to top it off, the food prep area was tiny. Thus, a key requirement was to increase the work area so that more than one person could work without bumping into anyone who came within elbow distance. Quite a challenge!
We suggested a modern French Country plan. The house was quite large with notable modernization and renovation in other rooms already; now it was time for the kitchen to catch up. The new plan ensured that it would be integrated seamlessly with the rest of the home and would feel like the entire residence was of the same design.
We started by studying how the family lived and their traffic flow. Their kitchen was not only a meal preparation area, but was also the focus of their entertainment and daily life.
This client enjoyed cooking with friends and family and needed ample space for multiple family members to work together. Developing a large prep area that could also turn into an entertainment area emerged as a very important requirement.
We built a truly functional mudroom – walls and windows were replaced with a French door and windows in keeping with authentic French design.
Kitchen layout was streamlined to include a large and comfortable dining room space. The dining area did double duty as “homework central” for the kids. And in the evening, the kitchen morphs into an entertainment room for our clients and their guests, featuring an oversize island.
One of the biggest challenges was to create both living and cooking areas that would not infringe on each other. The prep area now smoothly divides the kitchen to bring guests close to the the prep process, but would not infringe on the chef’s work. This kitchen is a success with both function and style in mind, ensuring there is no compromise between the two.