Claudette + John

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Claudette + John

Kitchen Renovation

After spending more than 40 years in her Alameda, Portland, home and raising 3 children there, Claudette and her husband, John, were ready for a gut renovation of their kitchen. The new design was inspired by the 1920s home's gracious English-influenced architecture. Clean lines and a shot of bold color strike a balance between modern and traditional.

Several key factors informed the plan. The kitchen is a compact yet high-traffic area, giving access to several rooms. We had to design for that circulation, for ample storage, and also for better flow between the kitchen and breakfast room. Our approach was to forgo cabinetry above the peninsula, keeping it open. A bi-level countertop is multi-purpose: it screens messy prep areas from the kitchen, acts as a breakfast bar, and is also handy for placing hot dishes from the the adjacent double oven. A full wall of cabinetry provides good storage.

This project was published by Remodelista and Portland Monthly.

“I found the prospect of a new kitchen daunting and had thought about it for years without doing anything about it. My kids had been pushing me to renovate, but I was overwhelmed and just kept putting it off. From the beginning, Michael was hands on. He took care of everything, which was a big relief.”



The old kitchen had served a family of five for more than 40 years.

claud proof1

bold + blue

Flooding a whole wall with cobalt tile adds a jolt of color to counteract Pacific Northwest gloom. Each tile is handmade, and the variety gives a richness and depth to the room.

claud proof2

Brit + bright

A color scheme of deep blue, black + white, together with a British-made Shaws apron sink, adds subtle, traditional English flavor. Large windows at the sink make the most of natural light.


wall of white

Crisp white cabinetry + honed black granite countertops round out the materials palette. Custom designed by Michael Howells, the cabinetry references traditional motifs but with a modern tweak. With an entire wall given over to storage, kitchen and pantry items are tucked out of sight.

General Contractor: ReCraft Home Remodeling

Photographer: Anna M Campbell