ISSUE 85  |  Travels with an Editor: Barcelona

Steal This Look: A Spanish-Inspired Black and White Kitchen

August 18, 2013 9:00 AM

BY Alexa Hotz

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In her overhaul of a Portland, OR, kitchen in a 1926 Mediterranean-style building, designer Jessica Helgerson took inspiration from the building itself, called, appropriately enough, the Alhambra. But more than architectural flourishes were required: “The original kitchen was a narrow galley with one window,” according to Helgerson. “In order to create the new space, we removed a wall between the old kitchen and an adjacent family room. We also opened up the connection between the kitchen and dining room with a large arched opening; in order to keep the family room function, we installed a built-in sofa at one end of the kitchen and hid the TV behind custom cabinetry.”

See more at Jessica Helgerson. Photos by Lincoln Barbour.

Above: Helgerson hewed to a black/white/brass palette in her design for the kitchen. Industrial steel casement windows overlook the Portland streetscape.

Above: The center island is custom, designed “in a style reminiscent of a traditional Spanish table but higher for counter use,” says Helgerson.

Above: The dark wood beams tie together the black and white palette.

Above: Next to the Lacanche range, Helgerson created a built-in seating area for lounging and TV watching (it’s concealed behind custom cabinetry).

Above: Brass light fixtures add a note of warmth to the otherwise rigorously black and white palette.

Above: Lacanche’s Cluny 1400 Kitchen Range (shown above) features an ambient temperature cabinet or a warming oven along with the choice of gas or electric rings, a steam cooker, deep fryer, flat-top or standard grill. Available in a range of sizes and models; for a local vendor, visit Lacanche.

Above: Helgerson spec’ed the Karbon Faucet by Kohler (see another use of the faucet in The Architect Is In: Medium Plenty in San Francisco).

Above: The Reclaimed Wood Spindle Table is $1,695 from Hudson Goods.

Brass Shade Pendant Lamp

Above: Brass Shade Pendant Lamp with black cloth-covered cord with white ceiling canopy; $75 from One Forty Three.

Above: Ceramica Bianca Glazed Tiles from Italian tile company Mutina are designed by architect Silvia Giacobazzi, available at Stone Source. Blue Slide Art Tile in Point Reyes, CA, makes characterful glazed brick tile; another good source for glazed brick tile is Clé Tile in Sausalito, CA.

Above: The floors are clad in Badajoz encaustic cement tiles from LA-based Grenada Tile.

Above: Ralph Lauren’s industrial-style Ashcroft Sconce is $440 from Circa Lighting.

Above: The Plain Round Cabinet Knob is made of hand-polished, unlacquered brass; $10 each from Rejuvenation. For more see our post, 10 Easy Pieces: Brass Cabinet Knobs.

Above: To avoid the over-shiny look, the key is to source unlacquered brass fixtures, such as the hot-forged brass Lewis Double Coverplate from Rejuvenation; $25.

Above: Similar indigo-dyed cushions are available from Brooklyn textile artist and former Anthropologie designer Rebecca Atwood; her hand-painted Spots Pillow is $200 and her Grid Shibori Pillow is $200. For more on Atwood, see Pattern Language: Textiles from a Native Cape Codder.

Kitchen crazed? Sift through our gallery of over 2,000 Kitchens and filter by color palette, materials, and style, including Mediterranean-Style Kitchens and Dining Rooms.