Posted in Art for the Kitchen, Back splashes, Historical Influence, Spanish Style, Style Notes

Hearst Castle and the Products it Inspired

Luxury as Defined. Period.
Preserving the history of design and craftsmanship through inspired contemporary design.

How does architectural history translate into kitchen and bath products? View pics at KBB online to view stunning products inspired by the architectural elements found at Hearst Castle. Once the private home of publisher William Randolph Hearst, the estate also known as La Cuesta Encantada®  or “The Enchanted Hill”, overlooks the spectacular California coast and was the shared design endeavor of architect Julia Morgan and William Randolph Hearst. Today Hearst Castle is a California State Historical Monument and State Park.

View of The Hearst Castle overlooking the Pacific Ocean

Some of my favorite manufacturers have been licensed by the Heart Castle Collection to produce inspired reproductions from design elements found throughout the castle. Tilevera, Enkebol, Soko, Barclay Butera Home,  Taracea, and Habersham to name a few. Not everyone can own a castle nor would want to furnish one, but the design details inspired from The Hearst Castle lend themselves beautifully into kitchen and bath projects inspired by the antiquities collected by Mr. Hearst from around the world.

Fortunately for me, Hearst Castle, on the Central Coast of California is a short day trip to escape to. Designers, artists and artisans from all over the world come to Hearst Castle for inspiration for their own reasons. Whether they come for inspiration for a major product line or for a one of a kind studio piece, the one thing they all leave Hearst Castle saying that in their wildest dreams they never imagined what an inspirational design resource it is.

For every client I have worked with there has always been a pivotal inspiration point for the design. Be it a color, a view, a vacation getaway, there is always a trigger point that inspires a design direction. What inspired your last renovation?

Where designers come to be inspired.

Sources:

Fit for a King: Part 1

http://www.hearstcastlecollection.com/index.html

http://www.hearstcastle.org/

Posted in Happenings In LA, Historical Influence, Mid Century Modern, Small Kitchens

Post Modern Update: The Pasinetti House

Simplicity and elegance in a modern setting.

A kitchen remodel even a dog could love.
(I believe all dogs check out what’s on the counters when we are at work. )

These photos are from an LA Times article,
Haralamb Georgescu’s midcentury Pasinetti house renovated:

Kitchen Notes on the Pasinetti Renovation.

  1. What had been a small galley kitchen was opened to allow a greater social flow to the dining room and living space.
  2. The Formica counter tops were replaced with a smooth white quartz.
  3. To reduce the scale of the kitchen appliances, the refrigerator and freezer were placed in separate drawers with cabinet fronts that match Georgescu’s cabinet design and proportions, and a new mahogany finish connects them to the bookcases in the main living area.
  4. My one reservation: The paneling behind the range is mahogany. As beautiful as it is, grease splatters on a wood back splash will discolor the wood. I would have liked to see milk white back painted glass just behind the range. It would have been appropriate for the style and also it would make the quartz pop.
The photo was taken on day 206 of the renovation.
Stark Ghost Chairs. Morredi of Denmark Dining Table.

Photo from demolition.
Note the wall up, jalousie windows, formica tops,
lipped cabinet doors, awkard cooktop location.

Day 225. What a difference!
Appliances by Sub-Zero, Miele and Bertazzoni.
Fixtures by Dornbracht and Blanco.


Notes from LA Times Article:

Architect Haralamb Georgescu (1908-77) is considered one of Romania’s most important architects. Today many of his modernist buildings in Bucharest are landmarks. Despite designing dozens of buildings in Southern California, Georgescu never gained the same level of fame as his midcentury contemporaries. The Midcentury Modern Pasinetti home, built in Beverly Hills in 1958, was for sale as a tear -down in 2007. The idea was to replace the home with yet another over done, ridiculous behemoth Beverly Hills Tuscan style McMansion. Krikey! Was I descriptive enough?

Vision
The developer Tim Braseth says “developers do not need to replace a house in order to gain a maximum return.” Braseth saw the beauty in the post modern structure and had the Pasinetti home restored with updated conveniences, improved building methods and energy efficient materials and technology that brought the home up to date while still respecting the integrity of the home’s important design elements. The Pasinetti house is now being designated a Los Angeles Historic Cultural Monument.

For more information: click here for the LA Times article.
For a press release: click here.
For more inforation on the developer: click here

Posted in Historical Influence, Kitchen Tours, Kitchen Trends, Paint, Style Notes

Subtlety: The Master in Design

I love detail. Who doesn’t.

Detail, well crafted can exude an enormous amount of interesting features without becoming overwhelming. The beauty of detail is found in the subtlety of design and the ability to interpret regional influences.

A master at quiet detail is Doug Durbin, award winning designer, and co-founder with brother John Durbin, of NuHaus Kitchen and Bath Design. His ability of layering wood species in a space is absolutely striking but never loud. So subtle are the transitions, similar to a painting, there is a nuance you may not observe upon first viewing. Return again, and a new detail will present itself that you hadn’t noticed before. To me, that is the inspiration of good design.

SubZero has an excellent video series featuring award winning projects with a commentary from client, designer and design commentary from leaders in the kitchen and bath design world.
Please visit SubZero.com/trade/tradevideos.aspx to visit Doug Durbin’s featured video.

Posted in Historical Influence, Kitchen Tours, Kitchen Trends, Paint, Style Notes

Subtlety: The Master in Design

I love detail. Who doesn’t.

Detail, well crafted can exude an enormous amount of interesting features without becoming overwhelming. The beauty of detail is found in the subtlety of design and the ability to interpret regional influences.

A master at quiet detail is Doug Durbin, award winning designer, and co-founder with brother John Durbin, of NuHaus Kitchen and Bath Design. His ability of layering wood species in a space is absolutely striking but never loud. So subtle are the transitions, similar to a painting, there is a nuance you may not observe upon first viewing. Return again, and a new detail will present itself that you hadn’t noticed before. To me, that is the inspiration of good design.

SubZero has an excellent video series featuring award winning projects with a commentary from client, designer and design commentary from leaders in the kitchen and bath design world.
Please visit SubZero.com/trade/tradevideos.aspx to visit Doug Durbin’s featured video.

Posted in Blue Kitchens, Historical Influence, Kitchen Sociology, Modern Kitchens, Retro Kitchens, Who Knew

Looking back to look forward in kitchen remodeling.

(photos found at Retro Renovation)

I am a history buff. I love kernels of information so I can go off on a self discovery reading journey. Here is one that got me thinking about times of economic turmoil and how it affects everything we do, everything we buy and even what we eat. Did you know that during the Depression the U.S. Commerce Department proclaimed six standard colors in response to the chaos of various colors that previously existed regarding kitchen equipment? Is this not a wild factoid?

Hold on to that green frying pan. Yes, the US Commerce Dept formed the National Kitchen Modernization Bureau in 1935. White, delphinium blue, royal blue, kitchen green, ivory and red were designated as standard colors. Was the multitude of various colors in kitchen equipment really a problem? Could it be that the drive was to modernize kitchens? Out with the coal and in with gas ranges and electric refrigerators available in six matching colors for a lovely new modern kitchen.

For more information please take a detour to Retro-style suits older home for a very informative and quick read about the reactionary history of appliance colors based on economic hardships.

I found a reference to the National Kitchen Modernization Bureau, pulled from the archives of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinal.
Refer to the article: Newspaper’s institute raised bar on homemaking by Nancy Stohs.

Here is a snippet from the article:

In 1930, members could get free advice on kitchen remodeling through the institute’s Home Modernizing Bureau. A program announced in The Journal instructed women to mail in sketches of their woefully old-fashioned kitchens. Some of the old kitchens, along with suggested new designs, would be published in the Real Estate section. Owners of kitchens whose designs were not published would get a personal reply.

An article announcing the opportunity informed readers: “Pantries are out of date, be they large or small, and we must be rid of them to be modern.” Perhaps the pantry could be turned into a breakfast nook, or “a niche for the electric refrigerator.”

As for all those objects displaced from the pantry, “Closed cupboards are the modern, sanitary answer.” But don’t panic: “Building them is no longer a week’s long process.”

A thorough kitchen modernizing should run from $300 to $500, readers were told. “It is not necessary to have all of it done this spring.”

For more reading on Vintage Kitchens, reference the article:
Vintage Kitchens of the 1930’s, 1940’s, 1950’s.

If you are loving all things vintage, then take another detour to Retro Renovations.

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