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Modern Family

With some help from Deane, Inc., a family of seven creates a kitchen that has plenty of space for everyone and everything

For a family with five school-age children, it should come as no surprise that accommodating large groups was a top priority in the design of their kitchen, since it was sure to be the scene of casual get-togethers, family gatherings, and more than a few school pasta dinners.

Since the homeowner wanted something with an industrial look, kitchen designer Peter Deane started with materials that were both durable and had a modern appeal. Stainless steel runs around the perimeter of the countertops around the kitchen, and on the island, a three-inch concrete countertop with a waterfall edge is sturdy enough to stand up to daily wear and tear. And positioned in front of the island: five stools for the five children of the house.

Though the cabinets around the perimeter of the kitchen are a more traditional white, the island and butler’s pantry are painted in Benjamin Moore’s “kendall charcoal,” a darker gray that keeps the look modern but warm. This gray-and-white palette continues throughout the house, and includes the Benjamin Moore color “calm,” a hue that Deane says the homeowner jokingly hoped might have a calming effect on her bustling household.

With a large family, refrigeration space was also a major priority, so Deane installed two full-size thirty-six-inch Sub-Zero refrigerators—one just for mom, and one kid-friendly fridge that gives her brood easy access to snacks and drinks. For the busy mother of five, a forty-eight-inch Wolf range “is a necessity for the amount of cooking she does on a daily basis,” says Deane. “It’s not just there to look good, but to function for her lifestyle.”

A warming drawer is practically an essential for this busy bunch too. “With kids coming and going from sports and theater, their schedules are chaotic,” says Deane. Their mother preps a lot of food in advance so she’s not cooking three or four times a night. “The kids know that when they come home, whether it’s 6:00 or 7:30, there’s food for them in the warming drawer.”

Something else that can really come in handy with five kids? Off of the mudroom, a bathroom with a long stainless steel sink allows several children to wash boots or hands at once. There’s another more formal bathroom for adults nearby.

When they aren’t at a soccer practice or a play rehearsal, the kids have their own computer station at home with an easily accessible wall of open storage—a design that any parent knows also makes things easier to put away. A magnetic blackboard is a spot to post reminders and notes. And around the corner is the mother’s own station, where she runs the family activities and schedules.

With so much going on in this one house—keeping track of seven schedules is no short order—it’s no wonder this family needed a kitchen design to simplify their lifestyle. Perhaps the reason this household runs so well is in part due to its highly functional kitchen.


Peter Deane, Deane, Inc., Stamford, 203-327-7008 and New Canaan, 203-972-8836, deaneinc.com