Going with the Flow

March 2022 View more

Botanical motif wall-paper by Cole & Son fits the aesthetic of the 100-year-old Arts and Crafts–style home.

Banquette seating tops pot drawers, which conveniently can be accessed without removing the cushion.

Cambria’s Ella product on the island countertop has the look of marble, but is made from easy-to-care-for quartz. 

Ginny and John Keiser wanted to cook and enjoy weekend meals with their two adult children, but the layout of their Hinsdale kitchen created traffic jams that frustrated the chefs. 

So the couple hired Stephanie Sarris, owner of Bellehaven Designs in Hinsdale, who addressed a traffic pattern that wasn’t working, while also modernizing the space with design elements that fit the aesthetic of the 5,000-square-foot, 100-year-old home.

“A kitchen has to function first, then we worry about what it looks like,” says Sarris, whose design for the remodel won first place for a kitchen by a small firm in a competition sponsored by the Illinois chapter of the American Society of Interior Designers.

To improve the functionality, Sarris worked with Clairmont Limited to enlarge the opening between the kitchen and the family room and created a counter-height island to replace the former bar-height one. The design includes Shaker cabinetry from Amish Touch Custom Cabinetry in Benjamin Moore’s Hale Navy, an almost black-looking shade, combined with Matador White for the upper cabinets.

Kitchen elements—from Sunbrella fabric on stools to gray grout connecting subway tile—meet Sarris’s test of maximum pretty for minimum effort. 

“You don’t want to spend Saturday morning sealing the countertop or scrubbing the grout with a toothbrush,” she says.

Photo courtesy Bellehaven Designs