WORDS Julia Freemantle PHOTOS Anson Smart (Alexander & Co, Tamsin Johnson); Elsa Young (La Grange Interiors); Sean Gibson (Valcucine); Supplied (Leicht, Eurocasa, Bryce Henderson Design, Cesar, Infinity); Karl Rogers (One Design + Development)
Always the hub around which daily life centres, kitchens that offer a sense of welcome and create a feeling of calm and ease are in major design demand right now.
Abundant light, natural materials, warm tones and organic touches are a fail-safe way to create a cosy, comfortable kitchen space.
Alexander & Co’s (top) Pacific House project is a contemporary, materially rich space, inspired by the practicalities of family and a European lifestyle. Timber, an asymmetrically paved floor and personal art and objects bring it to life.
Leicht’s Les Couleurs Le Corbusier range offers customisable “architectural colours” to add nuance and individuality to your kitchen.
In La Grange Interiors’ richly textured space, Sumari Krige has layered materials, shapes and warm colours to charismatic effect.
The kitchen island has come a long way from being a staid, solid rectangular fixture. Materials, shapes, levels – it’s all fair game now, and creating a custom feature that actually works for you is easier than ever.
This Eurocasa design by Rossana for the Maranello collection combines the best of a dining table and island in one.
Also doing double duty is Bryce Henderson Design’s take on a banquette/island/table combo – both space-saving and sleek.
Cesar creates off-centre interest with the N_Elle range, designed for seamless use and sophistication.
Seamlessness is achieved, too, in this Valcucine space designed by Shirley Wayne, where the flow from prep to dining is effortless courtesy of an extended island-to-table transition, all at the same height.
Handleless cabinetry has never been more popular – it allows for a clutter-free space where storage melts into the background, and works particularly well in open-plan designs and contemporary schemes.
The Eurocasa Era range ups the elegance ante on understatement with its sliding countertops and polished solution to opening mechanisms – jewel-like and discretely tucked away at the top.
The epitome of minimalism, the Cesar N_Elle range is the culmination of material and technical sophistication, allowing for an effective execution despite its simplicity.
Green has emerged as the colour of the moment: fresh and energising, but calming, it’s a natural fit for the kitchen, and can be used in whatever dose you’re comfortable with.
On one end of the spectrum, the Maxima 2.2 range’s ornate island and rippled cabinetry from Cesar (above left) offers a maxed-out take on this season’s palette, while the serene space by Tamsin Johnson (above right) is toned-down but still striking.
On the other end is this One Design + Development space, with green used conservatively in the form of furniture.
Ahead of the Curve
Rounded edges and curved forms make for softer, more feminine spaces – a motif that can be incorporated in myriad ways.
Cesar (above left) takes it to extremes with its new Tangram design – a sinuous island complemented by a circular tabletop – while Infinity’s kitchen in Calacatta Magnifico (above right) pairs a linear slatted effect with curved ends for a balanced and pleasing island.
Alexander & Co has paired a round-edged island with expressive shapes and earth tones to create a space that exudes warmth and creativity.
Open and Shut Case
Combining concealed and open storage allows you to tuck away less-than-sightly items, and display those that are worth showing off.
This Infinity space (above left) perfectly melds generous open shelving – for books and objects – with sleek under-counter storage. Molteni&C (above right) integrates the two concepts via closed cupboards with transparent glass fronts, lit from inside to draw attention to the contents.