A Kitchen Redo Respects its Original Architect
From the side yard of a historical cottage in La Jolla, a Dutch door opens to reveal a remodeled kitchen that’s filled with light. The door’s quaintness complements the home’s storybook style. The residence is one of a cluster of Tudor homes in the Barber Tract designed by architect Florence Buchanan Palmer.
“Built by Palmer in 1929, the home is now listed as one of San Diego’s Historical Landmarks in La Jolla,” says Margaret Dean of Design Studio West. “Our main goal in the kitchen remodel was to keep the integrity of the house.” A small fireplace with minimal ornamentation provided much of the makeover’s inspiration, including a simply styled new hood, a to-the-ceiling white backsplash without trim or colored accents and the Shaker-style cabinet doors.
“We decided to eliminate any upper cabinets to make the space more open,” Margaret says. “With the lack of upper cabinets, the windows took the main stage.”
All the original windows were kept, including a window to the right of the Dutch door through which early morning light casts a soft glow on a dedicated coffee and tea station. Wide-planks of Douglas fir were matched to the original flooring throughout the home. By eliminating two walls, one between the kitchen and the dining room and the other between the entry and the dining room, Margaret crafted a delightfully open space that facilitates entertaining.
“Though the home is almost 90 years old,” she says, “the clients and I found the original design still had relevance and could easily translate into a more contemporary version.” ❖