The Blue-Plate Special
Dressed to chill, this diner-style kitchen is equally suited to convenient cooking, casual dining, and serious hanging out.
Magazine Extra: Want to see more of the house? View a slideshow of the homeowners’ Japanese-inspired master bath, complete with a concrete soaking tub and seperate toilet room.
Some of you might remember hanging out in mid century deco diners. I don’t. Their heyday had come and gone before my time. I have, however, seen many episodes of the TV show Happy Days in which Richie, The Fonz, Ralph Malph, Potsie, and the gang spend much of their time at Arnold’s diner. In fact, their lives seem to revolve around that place. For burgers, root-beer floats, or the jukebox, Arnold’s is a social hot spot.
Today’s diners, with their comfortable booths and communal counters, are still a great place to gather. That’s why my clients’ suggestion made perfect sense. Jayne and Scott Willingham wanted their new kitchen to have a diner-style aesthetic. After all, in many homes, life revolves around the kitchen, and the Willinghams wanted theirs to be both convenient and casual.
As in many older homes, counter and storage space in the Willinghams’ original kitchen was minimal. One of the goals for the remodel was to balance work space and storage space, making them accessible to both adults and children.
Part of the solution was to use many large drawers below the counters rather than more-common door-accessed cabinets. Jayne and Scott like the way the various-size undercounter drawers allow them to organize kitchen items, and their kids appreciate being able to reach glasses, plates, and snacks. Who wouldn’t like being able to access the contents of base cabinets without squatting down to see inside?
The new kitchen also has bountiful counter space, including a small area behind the L-shaped bar that’s ideal for serving refreshments without getting in the cook’s way.