Black kitchens are sexy – as noted in the recent article “Cook in the Dark” by David A. Keeps, in the Wall Street Journal, last weekend September 13-14, 2014. And in 2008 when we created a dramatic statement using black custom cabinets contrasted against raw-meat colored granite to many it was quite daring, even astonishing – but everyone LOVED it! Yes, it was a man’s kitchen – but as his female friends can attest, it is genderless in its stunningly composed design. This particular interior remodel featured this striking kitchen and we celebrated the black further by painting all the base trim, doors and molding in a semi-gloss black. Contrasting creamy travertine floors and walls are punctuated by the black trim and monolithic two-sided black marble fireplace and flanking cabinets.
On the heels of that project, we found ourselves celebrating a stone fireplace installation from the 70s. Many thought it needed to go – but rather, we found the same slate stone in large format floor tiles and finished all of the floors throughout with this stunning natural material. All of a sudden the fireplace was at home in a new context. A completely new kitchen – enlarged with many added functions – was designed with black cabinets and iridescent mossy green granite counter-tops flecked and riddled with gold and black fissures. The slate stone flooring was mimicked in the backsplash with the same silvery slate along with a black and grey stone madras-like mix.
I was there in that second interior today as the client prepared with great focus and determination for a significant reunion of friends coming from all over the country – some not having been together for 40 years! A new commission of a martini alongside a copy of Flying magazine (the client is a private pilot), by celebrated artist Susan E. Roden – delivered today, sparkles with highlights of silver leaf next to the brushed stainless accoutrements. The bright red pops against the neutrals and black anchors of the dark toned bar and obsidian kitchen.
So it’s been fun to read the Keeps’ article and hear of this new craze in dark kitchens – we always knew they were sexy. Clients love being ahead of the trends. But as is always the case – when the trend takes hold, the industry provides a new array of offerings for designers to incorporate. New materials, new finishes – the challenge is to think a bit off from the norm and create before the palette is presented on the industry’s silver platter. Remember though – that good design always transcends trends!