Stop for a moment and study the color of the green tile in the niche just above the range in this timeless farmhouse kitchen. Then re-imagine neutral-color tile. Blah! That’s because tile can be the most powerful factor in a kitchen with more impact than paint. Wherever it’s used, tile adds the proverbial triple play – color, texture and pattern.
Predominately, the kitchen is Tuscan yellow – cabinets and walls are sunflower and the floor blends in. The tall pantry cabinet painted pale orange offers a hint of Shaker kitchen style we also saw in the Dove Gray Shaker Kitchen. Abundant natural light keeps it bright. So the eye automatically is drawn to tile as dark as these pine-green Arts & Crafts crackle squares in the recessed space that hugs the Wolf dual-fuel range.
Animal-theme relief tiles placed at intervals in the deep-green field spark a woodland theme. While I don’t have the exact source for the tile, it’s similar to revival styles that can be found in collections by Mission Tile West, and North Country Tile in Vermont, home base to the architects, Smith and Vansant.
The arched niche has some great features, beginning with task lighting and a concealed vent hood. The range is recessed so that all the cooking vapors and splatter are trapped and funneled up and out of the kitchen. The niche ceiling is also tiled, which makes for easy cleaning.
Ample stone counter space plus a bank of drawers adds real functionality to the well-lit niche. Shallow condiment shelves are built in on each side and while I quibble with storing olive oil or spices in a location that gets hot, there can be no argument about the convenience of having a mini pantry so close by. Note the rustic stone shelves and elegant textured Greek key motif border tile.
I often hear people refer to timeless kitchens — those which won’t date quickly. While appliances are usually the tipping point, having a kitchen with a color scheme as original as this one, and uncommonly fine tile brings it up to classic quality.
(Source: Smith and Vansant)
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