While such problems are common in older homes, it was somewhat surprising in this case, as the house had been gut renovated by the developer our clients bought the house from. While many critical upgrades had been accomplished during this renovation, including new HVAC systems, roofing and siding (and our clients had also insulated the walls and attic through Mass Save), the kitchen and front entry remained unworkable.
Family, Form, Function
These Cambridge clients loved the character of their early 20th century home, but they were frustrated by the dysfunctional kitchen and lack of front entry storage. The kitchen had very little work surface and modest storage; the appliances were located far from each other; and foot traffic passed right through the main "work triangle." The front entry had no closet or seating.Jump to Gallery
A key focus of the design process was the wall and the chimney between the dining room and kitchen. By taking down the chimney and closing off one of two doorways between the kitchen and the dining room, eliminating a doorway, Architect Bill Harper was able to create a highly functional work triangle with ample storage.
Other notable features of the new kitchen include an island with seating for three; an enlarged opening to the backyard patio with outswing doors; and a beverage station with an espresso maker, wine fridge and full height pantry cabinet.
We solved the front entry storage problem with relatively minor changes to the adjacent living room. The living room, which occupies the full depth of the house, had an unused, center chimney dividing the room. By taking down that chimney we created a coherent seating area towards the back of the room, while capturing the entire front wall for built-ins. The end result are functional, livable and gracious spaces that really work.