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  • Karen Terhune Duncan

The Kitchen

Updated: Jun 17, 2020

When my local friend Shirley first walked into our newly completed kitchen she hushed, “Shhh, I’m taking it all in.” After 4 months of renovations and hours upon hours of sourcing, our kitchen is operational. It’s creamy and shiny and dreamy. It’s full of drama and subtleties, whimsy and elegance.

The centerpiece of the room is the view so that became the focus for the design. (to see a video of the view go to Senior Savannah Facebook page) The bay window end of the room was originally a “breakfast” corner, and something we did not want or need. Instead we refitted one of the windows – for the view – with a large farm sink. From that point the peninsula extends 10 ft allowing for (eventually) counter stools. Then the island, which was designed for work space and buffets, is 9 ft and in the center of the main room.

Still need bar stools (have one from the old house there now as a placeholder).


The kitchen was dated, to say the least. The cabinets were good quality wood but in a 1990s pickled pine. We reused them in our Laundry/Craft room (will unveil in another post) and the garage and the rest went to Savannah Habitat. We closed off the original entrance in the middle of the wall and moved it to the very end and along with widening the living room opening, both to 60” each and to the header. This allowed better flow from the hallways and gave us this expansive “L” for cabinets.



Closing the center entrance and opening a new entrance from the back hallway.

Opening it up so the view is the focal.

Removing bulkheads and the old tile flooring.

New room taking shape.


These are the renderings from the Kitchen Designer.


The majority of the house had pretty original hardwood floors – all in pretty good shape except for the kitchen which had ugly old tile. Our contractor scraped them off and matched the hardwood seamlessly blending the new wood. Then they were sanded down to their original glory and refinished to perfection in a deep espresso.

From the living room looking into the new kitchen space and how they were able to match our existing hardwood floors (white oak)

The "espresso" stain going down.


It's White! Actually it's called Pearl so it's just the barest of creamy off-whites. The wall to the living room is the “beverage area” with a sexy curved bar sink, all our bar and glassware and a beverage frig. Easy elegance. The longest wall houses the Thermador range, hood, oven and an integrated refrigerator.

Refrigerator is last cabinet on left next to oven. The working island is narrow: only about 24 inches which makes it great to utilize for prep work and I envision it a great "buffet" for larger parties.

Beverage refrigerator houses wine, beer and all cold drinks.

Cool curved bar sink has filtered tap water and will function as a "wine" cooler for larger gatherings.

The Subzero freezer drawers (below) are integrated into the island and along with a drawer microwave. All hidden. The island is a soft gray-taupe that is picked up in the granite. The designer wanted it to look more like furniture with legs and trim.

The island is 10 ft of counter top which are all granite. Full of movement in grays, blues, creams and slashed with touches of silver and black. The backsplash is honed marble in grays, creams and taupe. I purposefully went neutral with little color so that the view, the food and my seasonal details are the color. The fixtures are polished nickel; a bit of glam as are the lights with glass balls. The cabinets are designed to the ceiling eliminating the “dust shelf” at the top of cabinets we’ve experienced before. The walls are painted BM Balboa Mist - a watery gray that looks blue in one light and taupe in another. The trim is Pearl.

More bling with polished nickel and glass light fixtures. The refrigerator, the dishwasher and the freezer drawers are all paneled in the cabinetry and integrate seamlessly. Deep drawers, tons of cabinets, it’s easy to work in and a terrific for entertaining. I parked our large bench in the bay window which has proved a favorite perch for guests. And a gorgeous contrast to the cabinetry.

There is work to be done in our dining room. With beautifully vaulted-ceilings and a wonderful large fireplace our round table works well, and there are two walls of glass with great views of the water. We need new chairs and additional pieces to complete the room. It was worth the wait.

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