I like my kitchens clean lined, and light  with lots of storage.  Medium to dark wood tones  make me fell heavy and closed in.  It's a personal preference and that usually  gets left behind when you are designing for a client.   In my locale there is a strong trend toward darker kitchens with the richness of wood showing through.

Photography: Brian Ricks
 
  Sometimes there are factors that negate the cave feeling I often get from dark wood cabinets. In a recent job this sleek modern kitchen design won me over.The client had very definite ideas about the overall look of everything so my job was to tweak the colours and problem solve space and placement. The cabinets couldn't extend all the way across because the depth beside the window was only about 10 inches.  Open shelving for glasses was the solution. 

 
Photography Brian Ricks
 
The second problem was storage because there weren't many upper cabinets. This  was solved by making the peninsula wider to include lower cabinets  facing the bar stools and drawers on the opposite side. The openness of the space around the peninsula makes a great gathering space when there's company.
 
 
 Photography: Margaret Ryall

 
I love this back splash tile. It is difficult to see but it is three dimensional with an alternating wave pattern between the squares. The tile and exhaust fan run to the ceiling for a seamless look. The tile also extends across the top of the cabinets to finish the look.  
 
Breaking the line of deep upper cabinets with 12 in ones by the exhaust fan added variety to the space.   The pulls varied in length with  depending on door size.  The 12 in. upper cabinets needed knobs because long bars bumped when the doors opened. So many things to think about!
 Photography : Margaret Ryall
 
A highlight of the kitchen detailing is the stainless steel counter beside the cooktop. The colours in the backsplash tile are a blend of the tones in the granite on the peninsula which serves to connect the two spaces.

 
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