La Cuisine… Before And After

June 17th, 2010 comments 16

It’s a pretty scary image isn’t it! Yet somehow I saw possibility… I seriously wonder what I had been drinking….

I’ve mentioned before that we’ve been en travaux (under renovation) for what seems like an eternity, but now that most of the dust has cleared, I thought I’d share some pic’s of the finished project.

It all started with the kitchen and I’m happy to report that the room is no longer pink. There wasn’t anything we could salvage in the old space, in fact, what was the kitchen is now a bedroom and what was a bedroom has become the new kitchen. I wish my photos were better but I think they’ll give you an idea. In the new kitchen we kept the exterior walls and windows as they were and gutted the interior shell. Layout was a challenge because of the four doorways and traffic flow. The space wasn’t wide enough for a center island but we managed a bar area that’s great staging for serving on the terrace.

I found old planks that had been used to age big rounds of cheese and we had them re-purposed into the cabinet doors. The grain of the wood is rough and raised from years of washing and the color is a soft pale grey/white/tan melange. The cabinet boxes themselves -mostly all drawers – are Ikea. Sending Ikea love here…

In Provençal fashion we built plaster legs for the cabinets, but I wanted to try to create a more modern look with the old techniques so the legs are extra thick and have a radius that’s repeated throughout the room. The counters are a grey Portuguese limestone, totally impractical, and I know better, but I like the patina they’re developing… it seems to go with the house. The floor is pierre de Bourgogne – stone from Burgundy. Grey-ish palette of zellige tiles on the wall. Grey-ish paint on doors, windows, kicks, and shelving.

Dishes are stored in an 18th century armoire from Uzes, very simple, sober lines. It’s a brownish purpley color that I also have in some of the pottery scattered around from the Alsace region of France. (The purpley brown glaze was created using magnesium.) Antique Swedish chairs and French Directoire table that we can extend to feed a crowd.

I scraped the paint off of an 18th century door to use on the pantry, inch by tiny little inch.

Stone sink and other antique bits and bobs with some wood and antique wicker to add texture… I didn’t put the sink under the window in this kitchen. I don’t spend that much time at the sink but I do spend a lot of time chopping and baking and I wanted the view as I cooked.

I do love cooking in this kitchen… can you come for lunch?

But the very best thing about this room has to be the view.

View to the East

Double doors lead out to a terrace that looks toward Mt. Ventoux, Gordes, Roussillon, Lumieres and the valley below… a window looks to the east and the sunrise.. another window to our “found” outdoor eating area. Our home isn’t large, it’s a small-ish maison de village and no matter how we try to make it just so, mother nature always carries the trump card. Thanks for taking the tour, I hope you liked it!


§ 16 Responses to La Cuisine… Before And After"

  • Wow!… I love what you have done!

    The trim around the stove hood really ties the wood from the drawer fronts and the ceiling beams all together…

    Love the mix of materials that you have used… and I too would use the limestone for the counter tops…for myself… most clients would probably not like the impracticality of it… ~Terri

  • Absolutely wonderful! I am so jealous as my kitchen is in need of some serious help and I will never have the amazing view- oh and it is not in France but in California.. I love it you did an amazing job!


  • Greet says:

    CONGRATULATIONS!!!!!! I can not say anything else except that it is G O R G E O U S !!! You have a wonderful taste! Love the cabinets, love that beautiful door!!!! Sooo charming!
    I need a person as you in my company!! I do!!!
    Very very beautiful! I mean that!!!
    Have a wonderful weekend enjoying your kitchen!

    • Susan says:

      Terri, Christina and Greet,
      Thank you all for the compliments. It means the world to me. This hasn’t been an easy project and we had to make some major compromises along the way because access to the house is so difficult. It helps to have such nice feedback.
      xx Susan

  • Linda in AZ * says:

    *** Dear Susan~

    ***ABSOLUTELY STUNNING~~~ what you’ve created is breathtaking, as are your surroundings!!! I’m SOOO glad I just “FOUND” you “by luck”!!!! What a TREAT to see!!!


    Linda in AZ *

  • Linda in AZ * says:

    ***P.S. That V*I*E*W?!?!?!?!~~~ MAGNIFICENT… absolutely MAGNIFICENT!!! Oh, you very lucky girl!!!
    Best again, Linda ***

  • Jenny says:

    i am hyperventalating over this…its absolutely stunning! Bravo!!

    • Susan says:

      Hi Jenny,
      Thank you, sometimes we’re too close to a project to see it so it’s nice to hear your words.

  • Therese Long says:

    Wow… just WOW!
    You are the complete package. Even though you are a treasure hunter you know just when enough is perfect. This space is absolute perfection and must be heaven to be in cooking with local ingredients while taking in your breathtaking views. You must have to pinch yourself :)

    • Susan says:

      Hi Therese,
      I do pinch myself and I have the bruises to prove it… I think this year we finally raised our heads up from our projects enough to see the results ~Susan

  • Deb says:

    Somehow I tripped on your blog and just HAD to comment — this kitchen is so beautiful! I love the cabinets, such a unique wood and what a story to tell. I wish to have this kind of vision. It looks calming and very textured and you want to linger over all the photos noticing the details — indoor and outdoor views!

  • Susan says:

    Love love love your kitchen and the amazing view!! You are blessed. Thanks for sharing.

  • Merci pour cet article intéressant ! Très bon blog.

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