Friday, September 16, 2011

Rockridge Kitchen Tour 2011: The Clever Details


Every two years, my neighborhood planning council puts on a kitchen tour, featuring walk-through tours of kitchens recently remodeled by homeowners in our historic Arts-and-Crafts neighborhood of Oakland, California.

This year, I am featuring some of these nine kitchens, which run the gamut from contemporary to traditional, in a before-and-after-event post.  

So as not to give away the entire tour before it actually happens, this is one of the few full kitchen shots I'll show until after the Rockridge Kitchen Tour has taken place.  Just a teaser!

For now, I'm going to show mostly tight shots of the clever ideas thought up by homeowners and their architects to solve some of the problems one might encounter in daily meal preparation.  I hope you get some great take-away ideas!

Let's start with the above kitchen.
I love this use of the small amount of space next to the fridge for cookbooks.  Books add warmth to any space, and in this case, lots of wonderful color.

If you look at both of the above photos, you'll see light streaming in above the cabinets.  The homeowners added clerestory windows above the upper cabinets for a light-filled kitchen.

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The homeowners in this kitchen wanted to make use of every inch of space in their custom-built island, so they turned the leftover six inches on the backside into a place to display cookbooks in an unusual way -- so the covers can be seen.


In the front of the island, the down draft for the cook top might normally prevent storage issues, but the homeowner asked the architect to design a drawer to get around the problem.

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Don't forget the pets!   In this kitchen, the homeowners had a drawer insert designed specifically to fit a bin of dog food.

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Installing a power strip under the cabinets lets one place appliances anywhere on the counter top.  For DIYers, this would also be an easy way to avoid working around outlets while installing a backsplash.

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Do you not love the apothecary cabinets that sit directly on the counter top in this kitchen?  Beautiful symmetry and light-filled storage.

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Near the second of two sinks (this one closest to the pantry and fridge) there is a pull-out for large appliance storage.  

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This kitchen was recently featured in Sunset magazine.  Here, the homeowners used open shelving to the left of the range for an aesthetically pleasing way to display dishes.  What makes it clever is that it's a cost-saving alternative to installing upper cabinets.

If you are local, there are plenty more clever details in these beautifully designed kitchens to see in person. 

You can pre-purchase tickets to the Rockridge Kitchen Tour which takes place Sunday, October 2nd from 12:30 to 5:30 pm. Proceeds will benefit the Rockridge Community Planning Council to support a variety of community activities and improvements.

For those of you who can't see it in person,  I'll do another post of some of my favorite kitchens after the event is over.  

Thank you to Natalie Mehta for providing photos!

Update:  To see more pictures of these kitchens post-tour, click here.

15 comments:

  1. Oh, I really like the dog food drawer...I am going to check in our new kitchen to see if I can create the same thing...that is such a great idea!! Take care, Caroline

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  2. I would love to go on a kitchen tour! The bookshelves next to the fridge gave me an idea! I love the warmth that books add to the kitchen! Thanks so much for sharing!
    Kelle
    xoxo

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  3. Those apothocary cabinets are amazing! I'll have to make my way over to Rockridge for the tour.

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  4. I can't comment on anyone's blog today except anonymously

    I love that first kitchen. All it needs is a few pots of herbs next to the sink and I'd be ready to move in.

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  5. Man, do I wish I still lived in Oakland! I hate to have to miss an event like this! Thanks for sharing. I've never seen a post this jam packed with ideas. I think my favorite is the cookbook shelf.

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  6. ahhh-efficient kitchens. We have a very tiny one, and I have to say that even so it's pretty nice because there is no wasted space. However, I would love a great place for my cookbooks like that one in the second pic. Lovely!

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  7. Love the style of the first photo--bright, clean and green. could only be improved by some copper pots and, as Steve suggests, some plants. I think the pull-out to make use of the corner space is great. good storage for heavy appliances without having to torque your back to get to them.

    I'll be interested to see if they are still using as much soapstone for counters as they did when we went two years ago with the babies strapped to our chests!

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  8. Love those cookbooks next to the fridge - practical and beautiful! Thanks so much for stopping by today!

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  9. Is there anything better than a good home tour? Fun! I see some inspiration here for my kitchen. Thanks!!

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  10. Love that dog food drawer. What a great idea! We had our power strips placed under our cabinets as well and I have never regretted it. I love the seamless look of our backsplash.

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  11. I want to go! So many great things here - I especially love that space beside the fridge for cookbooks. You were right about the nice pop of color it brings.

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  12. Ok I have seriously never seen this many clever and practical solutions for one space! I hope I can remeber this post if we ever get to do a kitchen reno!

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  13. That would be a fabulous tour to go on! Can't wait to see more photos - you are sharing more photos right?

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  14. I love a well designed kitchen. That second photo with the cookbook storage next to the refrigerator is brilliant!! So many great ideas here, thanks!

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  15. I'm going to have to save this post for when I design my own kitchen. So many great design ideas!

    And, yes, I own the other "go to sleep" book! Sometimes I read it to him taking out the cuss words. It's very passive aggressive of me but it makes me laugh and he doesn't know.

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I enjoy reading every comment.