When it came time for Gillian Stevens to remodel her dated Vancouver kitchen (“let’s just say it needed some help,” she summarizes), she did what her training as a photographer had always taught her to do: look for light. In this case, there wasn’t much. “The previous owners had installed a cupboard over the only window,” she explains of the dark and small room.
Instead of knocking down walls or adding more windows (which would have have meant less storage space), though, she and her husband, at their designer’s urging, opted to move the sole window. “We really struggled trying to fit everything we wanted into the room: unobstructed countertop space, open shelving, a 36-inch fridge, and a large window overlooking the garden. We couldn’t seem to make it all work without compromising,” says Gillian.
“When our kitchen designer suggested we remove the existing kitchen window, with my love of natural light, I couldn’t fathom removing a window. But doing that meant we could have all the things on our list, and with it being a smaller room, having a large window on the adjacent wall would replace the light we lost.”
The couple worked with Vancouver-based Kitchen Art Design on the remodel. “Our wish list was pretty long. I had been designing this kitchen in my head for many years, so I had a pretty specific idea of what I wanted to do,” says Gillian. “The biggest challenge was fitting all of the things we wanted into the space. There were many back and forth drawings with our cabinet designer.”
In the end, they got everything they wanted: “It’s a dream come true in every way.” Below, she details her best kitchen remodel decisions.
Photography by Gillian Stevens. (To visit her photography site, go here. To see her fashion brand, go here. To follow her on Instagram, go here.)
N.B.: This post is an update; the original ran on September 30, 2021.