Decorative inspiration: development of an island in a kitchen that is not too big

Erin Gates and Allison Whittemore of Erin Gates Design collaborated with Lori McGeown of Kramer’s Custom Kitchens and Woodworking to design this Charlestown kitchen. “There weren’t enough cupboards or counter space for a busy young family,” says Gates. Although the proportions of the room are narrow – the townhouse was built in the early 1800s – the team added a central island that maintains circulation to and from the space. As for the color and style, they were inspired by the historic property itself. “The white would have seemed too austere, so we dove into a neutral palette,” says Gates.

1 the saddles‘ provide comfort without clutter, while the dark finish reflects the traditional taste of customers and warms the space. “Brown-toned furniture is back,” says Gates.

2 The Perrin & Rowe Georgian style faucet is in keeping with the house’s roots, as is the unlacquered brass finish that will acquire a patina over time. The farm to flow is also appropriate to the period.

3 the cupboard to the left of the doorway visually connects the otherwise inconvenient corner with the rest of the room. “Classic Shaker-style cabinetry is a staple for us,” says Gates. “They will never go out of style.”

4 The Hudson Valley Lighting in painted metal pendants imitate English ceramic styles. “I like the clean form and the classic brass details that coordinate with the hardware,” says Gates. “Unlike clear glass, they won’t be hard to keep clean.”

5 Cheap ceramics floor tile with texture and variation have a rustic feel without the handmade price.

6 The design of porcelain stoneware stage pays homage to the checkerboard pattern painted on existing wide planks. “While full of character, the deep grooves grabbed every crumb,” Gates says. “It will be easy as pie to maintain.”


Marni Elyse Katz is a regular contributor to Globe Magazine. Send your comments to [email protected]

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