KDC Q&A: Libby Palmieri

January 22, 2014
KDC Q&A with Libby Palmieri, House of L


This is part of an ongoing series of posts in which we’ll take an in-depth look at the story behind the winning designs in our 2010-2012 Kitchen Design Contest.

Sub-Zero and Wolf: Who drove the inspiration for this design?
Libby Palmieri: The client wanted a timeless kitchen that would be elegant yet practical for the family of six.

SZW: What inspired it?
LP: The home sits in a pocket that is deeply rooted in Western Reserve architecture. The classic lines and nuances of the kitchen were inspired by these elements.

SZW: Was there an overarching theme to the design?
LP: The challenge with a white kitchen is that there need to be subtleties with the moldings and woods so that texture and details are there and the cabinets do not read flat and lifeless. All of the shadow lines imbue the millwork with an incredible dimensional quality.

SZW: Why were the colors in this kitchen chosen?
LP: The white chosen was from the farrow and ball collection and is Pointing No. 2003. It is a very warm white but still maintains a pristine and fresh quality without looking austere.

SZW: Was there anything you or the client wanted to include in the kitchen, but couldn’t?
LP: This is a unique layout. Even though the main kitchen is symmetrical, there is the wet bar and butler’s pantry tucked behind that serves as an entertaining gallery as well as the formal dining room. It is something you don’t see very often with the direct connectivity to the kitchen, yet it is so incredibly practical and adds an entire layer of accommodation to the kitchen that would not be possible without this little gem.

SZW: What’s your favorite part of the kitchen?
LP: I think my favorite part of this kitchen is how luxurious it feels but in an understated way. There are some fabulous appointments that lend grandeur to the overall space even though the footprint is not overtly large.

SZW: What did you learn from this project that will help you most in future jobs?
LP: I always try to design kitchens to be as user-friendly as possible and really listen to what a client wants and their lifestyle needs, then integrate the look within that organized structure. I usually have long wish lists and I’m always hesitant that I’m not going to be able to accommodate everything a client wants. Pushing myself to check off each end goal is always a main priority but melding that with the aesthetic element makes for a perfect space.

SZW: Tips for other designers?
LP: There are always basic design criteria for a kitchen but push yourself to think creatively every time. You will get the most optimal results for your client. Dare to think out of the box and it will make for a winning kitchen every time.

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