Kitchens by Jamie Blake of Blakes London (a member of the Remodelista Architect/Designer Directory) represent a particular gold standard: Seductive, white, and Scandi-like, they're rooms for living that also happen to operate as kitchens. In this week’s Designer Is In, Blake guides us through the project that started it all, a complete kitchen remodel in a Victorian terraced house in London. He's available for the next 48 hours to answer your questions, so ask away!
Blake’s client and friend, photographer Malcolm Menzies of 82mm, requested "a neutral and textured space that doesn't resemble a kitchen too closely.” Blake took advantage of the creative opportunity and masterfully mixed a wide range of materials, including reclaimed flooring, scaffolding planks, marble countertops, and even his own proprietary finish on the cabinet doors. The result is a room with a subtle, richly layered palette. “Sticking to the budget was a challenge,” Blake says, “but the months of investigation and experimentation paid off in new textures created out of old materials." Come and take the tour and then fire away at the questions.
Photography by Malcolm Menzies of 82mm.
Above: The kitchen is comprised of a long counter run incorporating appliances, sink, and storage along one wall. Parquet flooring found in a salvage yard in London was resuscitated by sanding it back to its original color and then finishing it with a lime wash.
Above: To add interest and texture to the ceiling over the cooking area, Blake added paneling and faux beams.
Above: "The brick detailing on the wall is also fake," Blake says. "It's a plaster effect that can be purchased in a tile format and easily fitted onto the wall, then painted. The open shelving was fashioned out of reclaimed scaffolding planks." The plaster effect brick can be found at Faux Brickwork.
Above: "Malcolm was very creative and easy to work with," Blake says. "The only parameters were to fit in the sink, fridge/freezer, and the AGA stove."
Above: Carrara marble counters maintain the neutral white palette. See Remodeling 101: Marble Countertops for our intel on this popular choice for kitchens.
Above: "Neutral and white was the request, so we used slight variations of the palette, both darker and lighter," Blake says.
Above: Gray denim updates the look of a vintage tufted chair purchased on eBay. The side table, another eBay purchase, is a wire wastebasket turned upside down.
Above: The three pendant lights over the sink are from Lassco, an architectural and lighting salvage yard in London. The deck-mounted sink faucets are from Perrin & Row's Mayan line (since discontinued). "Skylights are a must in this type of renovation," Blake says. "They brings pools of light into the darker areas of a Victorian terrace."
Above: The repurposed butler sink was found buried in the garden when the building team were excavating for the foundations. The framing detail around the front of the butler sink is also used to anchor the cabinet units, and serves to highlight the texture in the cabinet doors.
Above: The upper storage cabinet with a dark interior is a Blake design modeled on a classical Victorian dresser. "I wanted to achieve a mix of styles—the fresh clean palette contrasted by the classical glazed dresser," he says.
Above: Reclaimed scaffolding planks with a lime wash are used to panel the wall of the dining area.
Above: The vintage pendants hanging over the dining table are also from Lassco.
Above: A neutral, white medley of patterns and textures.
We recently featured another Blakes London kitchen: Endless Summer in a London Victorian. It was so popular, we enlisted Blake's help for Steal This Look: The Endless Summer Kitchen. And on Gardenista, more white interiors are spotlighted in Outbuilding of the Week: A Tiny Summerhouse in South London.