Recipes for Success

A bevy of Atlanta design pros reveal five of their latest kitchen creations.



Fresh Interpretation
This new northern French-inspired home actually features two kitchens—one is a more glamorous space, while an adjacent prep kitchen handles the heavy-duty work. Architect William B. Litchfield and decorator Jackye Lanham devised the home’s scheme, which was to create the feeling of a stone cottage nestled in the woods. It’s an idea they continued into the kitchens, as well. “The vocabulary of the house dictated the materials,” says Litchfield. “Plaster walls, beamed ceilings and iron windows, all of which are so romantic.” Wide-plank French oak floors and materials such as marble and zinc round out the mix.

Form and Function
Litchfield and Lanham designed the upper cabinet to take on the appearance of a furniture piece. The idea of the metal bracket came from the homeowner; the inspiration for its shape was taken from a motif that Litchfield used on the exterior of the house. Dramatic arched casement windows flood the prep kitchen with natural light. Appliances are cleverly tucked away, while mercury glass lanterns and hand-forged hardware add couture-like touches.
Cottage Charm
Although architect William B. Litchfield was called by his clients to do a kitchen/living/dining room renovation, the project evolved into redoing porches, baths, the upstairs and terraces. Eventually, the entire house had been transformed. Working with designer Betty Burgess, whom the client has known since high school, the goal was to create “a kitchen with soul,” says Litchfield. Painted shiplap poplar boards envelope the entire kitchen while painted knobs on the cabinetry keep the room understated. But nothing, not even accessories like antique transferware, can take away from the star of the room: a French La Cornue range. “It’s like a work of art,” Litchfield adds. Charming brackets tucked beneath the upper cabinets cozy things up, bridging the gap between the cabinetry and the travertine countertops. “They make the cabinets look like they’re not just hanging off the wall. They feel like they belong,” says Litchfield.
William Litchfield, William B. Litchfield Residential Designs Inc., (404) 467-4600;


Red Hot
When it came time to create a new kitchen for an Atlanta couple’s vacation home in the Blue Ridge mountains, designer John Oetgen and kitchen designer Ann Sullivan put a modern spin on a country aesthetic, redefining any preconceived notions of what a mountain kitchen should look like. “The entire house has more of a contemporary feeling than that of a nostalgic mountain home,” says Oetgen. The finish on the kitchen’s upper cabinets complements the wood walls throughout the rest of the house, but since the kitchen is also the home’s darkest room, the red makes it feel connected to the adjacent living area (which features jewel-tone colors), but detatched at the same time. “And the green marble was just a natural fit,” says Oetgen. “It picks up on the colors of the gardens, as well as the panoramic mountain views.” Subtle accents such as the red knobs on the Wolf range and the Le Creuset cookware add to the room’s colorful tour de force.

John Oetgen, Oetgen Design Inc., (404) 352-1112;


New Meets Old
Preparing for the day she’d build her dream kitchen, designer Carter Kay’s client had been cutting out inspiration pictures of what she wanted and keeping them in a notebook for 15 years. “She didn’t want a small redo,” says Kay. “But she wanted to keep any renovation within the lines of the existing Dutch Colonial architecture.” The resulting design is a clean, simple, almost ethereal space. Plaster walls—which make the room glow—are consistent with the rest of the house. Kay and her client were assisted in the renovation by architect Keith Summerour and kitchen designer Cynthia Ziegler, making sure the owner’s cherished collections of pewter, antique stoneware and Wedgwood creamware would be within easy reach. Kay designed the burnished steel range hood, which was fabricated by local artisan Charles Calhoun, and the island was inspired by a vintage French table. Contemporary Italian fixtures above it can be raised or lowered depending on the task at hand.

Carter Kay, Carter Kay Interiors, (404) 261-8119; Cynthia Ziegler, Cynthia Ziegler, Inc., (404) 313-1823; Keith Summerour, Summerour Architects, (404) 603-8585;


Contemporary Classic
When it came time to renovate their 1920s bungalow, architect A. Richard Bunn and his partner Ken Felts had one goal. “We wanted to keep the context of the house intact,” says Bunn. With that in mind, he devised a plan that allowed for a European-style kitchen to work within the framework of the home’s traditional architecture. The design began with the granite countertops. “I wanted something that wouldn’t show the mess I make,” Bunn says with a laugh. The stone he chose features beige, black and gray accents that set up the rest of the room’s vocabulary. For the island, Bunn selected a wenge stained oak finish to contrast with the painted perimeter cabinets. The kitchen is connected to an adjacent sitting area, so he designed a strong linear visual device, dubbed the “cloud,” above the island that better integrates the two spaces. A stainless steel wrap hides the range hood. Outdoors, Bunn created a more rustic space, explaining “I never wanted a mountain house for weekends, so that’s how the cooking fireplace and oven evolved.” Each stone was hand-set, and the organic placement—with little mortar shown—remains true to the bungalow’s original style. “It’s somewhat evocative of an old ruin,” Bunn adds. Corrugated pipe covers, which take on a modern rustic feel, camouflage masonry flues underneath.

A. Richard Bunn, Studio ARB Architecture, (404) 588-1980