A while back, Michelle emailed me to tell me about her friend Amy Lindburg’s recently remodeled kitchen in San Francisco. “It’s very original,” she wrote. “A mix of high and low, Ikea and crystal.” So a couple of weeks ago we headed over to document the project, which is full of brilliant ideas to steal.
As Michelle says, “Anyone who knows Amy knows she is extremely effective. And daring. She was a hardware engineer at Apple at a time when there were practically no female engineers anywhere. When she says she is going to do anything—from playing the French horn in the local orchestra to shipping virtual computer environments ahead of schedule—you can consider it done. So when Amy said she was going to buy a house in extreme vintage condition, remodel it, and live on the top floor with her three children, I had no doubt the project would be a huge success.”
Built in 1892, the two-unit Victorian building was virtually untouched (i.e., it needed a complete overhaul) when Amy bought it in 2016. Within six months she had installed central heating, new oak hardwood floors, repainted the interiors, and designed and remodeled both of the kitchens working with contractor Paul Stock of North Gate Builders. (And to see how Amy transformed the exterior, go to Before & After: Moody Blues for an Elegant Victorian in San Francisco on Gardenista.)
Join us for a tour.
Photography by Daniel Dent for Remodelista.
“The kitchen was a gut renovation,” Amy says. “It was just a room with a couple of dated appliances; there were no counters or storage. I mapped the whole thing out myself; it took hours and hours of planning. I used software tools from Ikea to configure the kitchen and figure out the cabinet locations. During the process, I removed two pantries and opened up the wall to make the room feel bigger; I wanted an open shelf feeling, with just a few things on display and everything stored below the counter.
“In my previous kitchen I had custom cabinets, Gagganau appliances, Vola faucets—the whole high-end thing. This time, I decided to go the Ikea route, using their basic cabinet components. But for the cabinet fronts, I went in a different direction: I used anthracite powder-coated aluminum cabinet fronts with integrated pulls from Reform. I worked with the US location in Brooklyn, but I actually went to visit the Reform headquarters in Copenhagen when I happened to be in town for a conference; I was the first US customer to visit!” (For more ideas on Ikea cabinet hacks, go to Ikea Kitchen Upgrade: 8 Custom Cabinet Companies for the Ultimate Ikea Hack.)
Above: Amy with her collection of vintage cut-crystal long-stemmed Waterford wineglasses; the vase is a vintage Swedish Gustavsberg Argenta piece found on eBay.
See more kitchens featuring Ikea components: