The kitchen is the heart of our home. As someone who loves to enjoy meals with my family, I’ve longed for a kitchen with more space (upgrade from our previous apartment kitchen of 10 years) to create meals for our family and friends. This is the room we go in and out of the most during the day. Plus, the corner floor-to-ceiling windows open up for access and flow to our yard. It’s clean and crisp with warm accents of brass throughout and pops of soft pink. When designing this kitchen, here’s what we considered…
I wanted beautiful materials that spoke to my aesthetic, but they also needed to be durable, long-lasting, and not too trendy. Many might be surprised that I didn’t choose a bright cabinet color, but I wanted the color to come from more subtle accents and feel like we could always add or subtract to the kitchen as the years passed. All of the built-in pieces are in white, woods, and brass with accents of texture throughout. Here’s a look back at our design plans and the functional layout plans so you can see where we started!
Similar to the living room, the kitchen also has access to our yard for easy indoor/outdoor flow. This makes it easy to watch the kids while they are playing and provides convenient access to our outdoor deck where we have lots of meals when it’s warm outside.
The kitchen is rectangular shaped with a long island in the middle. The island extends our counter space while also serving as a seating area for the four of us for our casual meals.
Open vs. Closed Shelving
While I love the look of open shelving, I didn’t want only open shelving. We have way too many things for that to work, and I didn’t want to feel like all of our dishes were out on display all the time. Open shelving works for certain kitchen environments but not for the functionality that we needed. However, the layout did allow for designing a smaller area of open shelving that not only serves as a decorative focal point but also helps to mix up the flow from all the floor to ceiling closed cabinets. I have been super happy with the mix of the two.
Storage and Cabinets
Storage was a huge part of the design process for the whole house, and the kitchen is a great example of that. We took advantage of every almost every wall to include closed cabinet storage. This allows us to store all the kitchen essentials (dishes, glasses, small appliance, bakeware, pantry foods, etc. and there are enough spots to designate a space for each category). We also included two slide-out trash bins which has been SO helpful as it feels like we’re emptying the trash every day. We worked with Reform for all cabinet doors (which go on top of Ikea bases/boxes for a semi-custom option that looks custom! The angled corners serve as handles which I loved for a clean option that also reflects the angles in the brass tiles, too.
To add in pattern in a sophisticated way, we played with these concrete terrazzo tiles with brass inlay to create a pattern in the open shelving area of the kitchen. It serves as a fun focal point and ties into the flooring as well. Behind the stove, the backsplash is quartz to offer easier maintenance when cooking.
When it comes to putting art in a kitchen, I didn’t want to put anything too precious near areas that could get heat, steam, or spatters from cooking. So the open shelving serve as a great area to place a few smaller pieces that could be decorative but not get in the way of any cooking messes.
Since most of the walls are covered by storage cabinets, we wanted to add texture and a large piece of art to the one wall that was open. The light gold wallpaper pattern gives texture and helps to tie in the brass from the rest of the space while also being the backdrop for this amazing piece from a Thai artist that I just love. This wall sits right by one of the doors to our yard so it’s a fun nod to the girls running and playing and being free.
Here’s a look at back at the flooring during install….
The terrazzo tile was designed to be placed as a large square grid (set at a diagonal) with brass schluter inlay between. The tiles are SO durable and easy to clean, and I am in love with the brass detail throughout. It makes the floors both chic and functional.
There you have it…one of the most-used rooms in our house! I’m sure you have questions, so feel free to leave any and all below in the comments!
P.S. See all house posts right here!
Reveal photos: Bethany Nauert
Progress photos: Lily Glass
Design: Joy Cho with Cleo Murnane of Project M Plus
Styling: Cleo Murnane of Project M Plus
Architecture: Project M Plus
Construction: Boswell Construction
My Dress: Rhode (past season)
Hair and Makeup: Danielle Walch
All furniture and materials sources noted within captions below photos. *Indicates an item that was designer discounted or gifted to us in exchange for coverage on Oh Joy. All opinions are my own. Please leave a comment if we missed anything you would like to know the source of!
So pretty. I especially love the lighting.
Thanks so much Leslie-Anne!
So much JOY, space and light in your kitchen; absolutely love it! We are thinking about a kitchen remodel in our condo and are toying with the idea of open shelves. It’s great to actually “see” it up front and live and how it can be a combination of open and closed. The open shelves give a feeling of open and airiness, but the closed shelves are definitely more functional and pretty much a necessity. I like how you have it as a focal that incorporates greenery, art and special items.
How large is the kitchen area? Are you able to share a round, ballpark number of the total cost and time required for this project?
Thank you for sharing and for providing resources for products and materials.
Thanks so much Nora! And because we did the whole house at the same time, I don’t have a breakdown for that room specifically.
I love it–so bright and clean! I’m especially curious about that sleek range hood: was it custom designed by the cabinet-makers?
Hi Sue! There is a KitchenAid range attached like normal and then we just built a cover around it to make it blend into the wall. It’s simple and clean and painted with the same wall color.
Looks beautiful Joy! I love it! Especially the tiles and big open corner openess! Congrats!
Thanks Jan! Hope you and the family are well!
Gooorgeous!! And so functional! I don’t always see that combo. Dreaming about updating my kitchen one day and will definitely come back to this post for inspo 🙂
Thanks so much Tasha!
Looks beautiful! It doesn’t appear to be an open concept kitchen (well to the outdoors it is), like many homes nowadays to the living area. I don’t like having the kitchen open to the living area (smells of cooking) so trying to convince husband.
No it doesn’t open to the living room which I know is very different than most but we’re very happy with it!
Looks lovely! How do the corner sliding doors work?
They slide and meet in the corner!
So lovely. Everything works so well together. I really dig the light fixtures over your island. Thank you for sharing.
It’s a beautiful space Joy! Can you tell me where the kettle is from? I didn’t see a link, but appreciate the simple, yet artistic look. Thanks!
Hi Autumn! Do you mean the watering can? If so, it’s from here:
Absolutely beautiful! Seeing your room reveals has been so exciting : ) Once all the rooms are revealed, could you do a video tour? I would love to see how all the different rooms are connected.
For privacy, we won’t be doing a full tour but have videos of each space individually. Thank you!
Beautiful! We are looking at doing a terrazzo tile with brass schluter inlay between, did your installers have to add grout between the brass and the tiles? or did they use silicone?
Yes, we did grout between!
This may be a silly question – does the brass schluter make it easier to clean or is it more for the (very real) aesthetic benefits? Are there other benefits to the schluter?
Hi! It’s def for the aesthetic. It doesn’t make it easier (or harder) to clean. It’s just another detail 🙂
What a beautiful space! I love the terrazzo floors and that opening to the backyard is swoon-worthy! Thank you for sharing!
Thanks so much Danielle!
So beautiful 😍
I am in love with your kitchen.
Thank you Stephanie!
Hi Hi Joy, everything is beautiful! can you please share the maker of the sliding doors?
Hi Frances! They are Fleetwood!
Love your kitchen and the details AND function! The outdoor access is great too. I’ve never heard of the company that made your counter stools. Do you like them (comfortable?) and are they holding up okay with kids? 🙂
Again beautiful space and Thanks in advance!
Hi Julie! They are an amazing furniture company out of SF. They make furniture for restaurants too and they are handmade and beautiful. I chose a smooth leather so they could be easily wipeable with kids. The chairs have held up great. I would add a back if you have younger kids since stools can be tricky when they are little but we didn’t have the space for the ones with backs.
Hi Joy, thank you so much for your reply! Great to learn about this company and thanks for your advice on the stools (I do have three younger children). Thanks and again, love your space!
Finally! A non open concept kitchen that is modern and fresh 🙂 Do you guys use a kitchen rug? Just curious!
Hi Viet! Thank you! At first I had missed having the kitchen and living room together but now I love it! And no, we don’t use a kitchen rug. It would get dirty so fast and harder to clean than just wiping the tile floor.
Beautiful kitchen! May I please ask where the white jars with the ball lids are from? Thank you!
Hi Lani, The jars are from here: https://www.mizrahi-hellmann.com/
Love your kitchen. Can you share the spacing distances for the walkways between the island and cabinets?
It’s about 37″ of space on the longer two sides and then 45″ on the shorter side near the stove.
This is beautiful! We are planning a kitchen remodel and I am curious as to how you are liking the refrigerator? We are in heavy debate between this panel ready option vs the subzero and if it is worth the extra cost!
Hi Chrissy! We love..haven’t had any issues!
Hi Joy, beautiful kitchen!
Do you have a video of the process for laying the terrazzo floor? I was wondering how the grout & the brass schluter are laid in between the tiles? & how wide are the gaps?
Hi Vaishali! Unfortunately, I don’t have a video of the install as the contractors did that and I didn’t want to be in their face while doing it 😛 But, I can tell you the tiles were set first, then the schulter went in, then the grout.
Thank you Joy. From your description it’s : tile, grout, schulter, grout, tile in that order
Hi! No, it’s tile placed (with the space allowed for all things in between). Then Shulter, then grout on both sides of shulter and next to tile. But you can show our photos to your installers as I am sure there are many ways to do it. That’s just how I think ours was done!
Hi Joy! I loved seeing the original reveal of this space, and I’m aiming to copy aspects of it as I think about my own eventual kitchen remodel. I was wondering, now that you’ve lived with it for a while, would you consider doing a post on how it’s held up and whether there is anything you wish you’d considered differently now that you’ve had the benefit of experiencing life in this space for a while! (I find it SO hard to figure proof choices like this, whether aesthetic or functional, and I don’t have experience with planning such highly functional spaces. Even working with architects and planners, I just fret over how things will go down the road. I’d love to know if you have any wisdom to impart about what splurges were worth it, would have been worth it, etc. Cheers and amazing work!!
Such a great question! I think there are tiny things we would have done differently with it but overall layout and function we are super happy with. It’s definitely hard to know how spaces will carry out over time but if you have a good architect and designer who talk through your life and what you need that helps a lot. So they are designing for YOU!