L-Shaped Countertop Becomes a Centerpiece
Sharon Cahill and her husband Paul Caldwell are enjoying the functional serenity of their newly renovated kitchen in very different ways. And yet, for this retired Riverview Park couple, harmony in the “ship’s galley” is the new reality.
Sharon finally has the kitchen of her dreams, a place where she can roll out a pie crust or cut the vegetables for a meal without having to struggle against a dysfunctional countertop work space, an undersized refrigerator, and cabinet storage more befitting a sailboat than their immaculate 1959 suburban bungalow. The design of the new L-shaped quartz countertop, imaginative cabinet and drawer arrangements, flexible lighting options, and the new energy-efficient appliances have created a true cook’s kitchen that is both eye-pleasing and efficient.
There is no wasted space.
It’s the kitchen Sharon has been wanting for years. “I just love it,” she said. For Paul, well let’s just say he is enjoying the quiet coming out of the kitchen these days. “I love the quiet, serene atmosphere while she’s in there,” he said. “I don’t hear ‘I hate this kitchen’ anymore.” The couple’s path to kitchen bliss began in earnest – as it does for so many of Westend Bath and Kitchen’s clients – with a trip to the annual springtime Ottawa Home & Garden
Show. Sharon and Paul had researched some kitchen ideas online, so were ready to meet with the professionals in person. “We didn’t rush into it,” Paul said. They spoke to several companies at the show, but soon came back to the approachable representatives from Westend Bath and Kitchen – company president Brian Mallett and designer Rebecca Neale – whose enthusiasm and ideas seemed the perfect mix for their project. “We already knew they had a good reputation for the work they do,” Paul said.
Renovating such an important space in the house calls for careful attention to the needs of the client, as well as an eye for functional and attractive interior design. Westend Bath and Kitchen designer Rebecca Neale knew that Sharon and Paul had some pretty clear ideas about what they were looking for, so she worked closely with the couple to come up with a final design.
“I asked Sharon to email me pictures of the colours and styles that she liked,” Rebecca says, “and these were the inspiration for the warm tones, slate tiles and the quartz countertop that we eventually chose. The first thing I noticed when I visited their home to take measurements was that they were lacking counter and cabinet space.
Wrapping the countertop along two walls and moving the sink to the new counter section underneath the other kitchen window gave them much more useful work and storage area.” One of the tougher decisions involved the choice of tile for the countertop backsplash.
Sharon took a chance on the unconventional.
She knew that choosing rough-surfaced tile might be unconventional, but she wanted to avoid having any garish shine from the under-cabinet lights take anything away from the elegant beauty of her new cabinets. “The way I was raised,” she said, “you spent your time in the kitchen. I like earth tones, and this is warm and inviting.” Paul especially appreciated that Westend Bath and Kitchen handled all of the project management. “The scheduling was great,” he said. “It was easy to plan our day. The job took 17 days, but the contractors (Ivan and Eric Gagnon) cleaned up every day.
It wasn’t as painful as I thought it would be.” “This renovation was a pleasure,” Sharon added. “Rebecca was great.” “Sharon and Paul were an absolute pleasure to work with,” Rebecca says. “They now have a much more functional and eye-pleasing kitchen than they did before, which is the whole point, and they’ll be able to enjoy it for years to come.”