Having a designer in the family can be a boon. When Londoner Charles Maggs was selling his home of 45 years, his son-in-law, architect Neil Dusheiko, helped him find a Victorian terrace house just around the corner from his family’s own Victorian in Stoke Newington, in the city’s northwest corner. “We wanted to be able to pop in and out of each other’s homes,” says Dusheiko, who then took on the extensive renovation himself. “It was a bit dark and damp. I wanted to make it into a light and airy home where my father-in-law could live comfortably and easily in a really beautiful and very personal space.” The highlight is the family gathering spot, a sunlit eat-in kitchen with a wall of shelves for displaying prints and pottery: “Charles is a keen cook and also a collector.” The kitchen as art gallery? Come take a look.
Photography courtesy of
Neil Dusheiko Architects. Above: Set in the back of the house, the new kitchen features a glazed extension that occupies part of a side alley. Large sliding windows and a glass door connect indoors to out, as do reclaimed brick tiles, which Dusheiko used to link the two spaces. The black zinc cladding on the roof is part of a new bedroom loft. Photograph by Agnes Sanvito. Above: The addition has a framework of columns that elegantly serve as shelf dividers as well as rafters supporting the skylight. (A box gutter, Dusheiko notes, is concealed inside the thickness of the wall to channel water from the glass roof.) The shallow oak shelves showcase Maggs’s collection of work by South African artists, many of them friends—he and Dusheiko both grew up in South Africa. Photograph by Tim Crocker. Above: An island with built-in wine bottle storage neatly divides the dining area from the kitchen. The island and countertops are made of oak treated with Danish oil—the wood and old bricks, sourced from Charles Howey, were introduced to “add warmth and tranquility, as well as to tie the contemporary design into the existing historic fabric of the house.” Photograph by Agnes Sanvito. Above: As a counterpart to the gallery wall, the kitchen is streamlined. Dusheiko, shown here opening the fridge, found glazed tiles—ecru Oxford Brick Tile from Captiol Designer Studio—in the same celadon as Maggs’s pots by the late Cape Town ceramic artist Hyme Rabinowitz. The kitchen cabinet frames came from Howdens, and Dusheiko customized them with MDF doors sprayed in a softer, more subtle version of the pale green. Photograph by Agnes Sanvito. Above: A window seat with below-the-bench storage runs along the window wall. Designed as a place for “visitors to sit and chat with the cook,” it’s also an ideal reading spot detailed with an inset bookshelf. The windows—5.9 feet wide by 6.5 feet tall—were supplied by Culmax. Photograph by Agnes Sanvito. Above: Maggs, now retired from a career in law, continually adds to the display on his shelves. Photograph by Tim Crocker. Above: Formerly divided into separate kitchen, dining, and living rooms, the three are now open to each other. The antique dining table and bentwood chairs came from Maggs’s old house. The glass pendant lights, selected to blend with the skylight, are Sofie Refer’s Mega Bulb SR2. Photograph by Agnes Sanvito. Above: The art wall continues in the parlor: Dusheiko dubbed the project Gallery House. Note the inset stair rail cleverly built into an oak display unit. Photograph by Agnes Sanvito. Above: Before and After plans explain how Dusheiko created an open flow on the ground floor and used indoor and outdoor brick to unify the project. Go to Neil Dusheiko Architects to see more of the firm’s projects.
Working on your own kitchen? Go to
Kitchen of the Week for ideas. Here are three designs that make room for art (or take inspiration from it):