Building Character Back into a Hinsdale Tudor

traditional kitchen with gray cabinetryThe homeowners of this Hinsdale Tudor wanted a kitchen that reflected the character and traditional style displayed in the rest of their homes. As it stood, their current space was dark and drab with a disproportionate amount of stainless steel. The master bathroom also left a lot to be desired – it was small and overall, very ordinary. Eager to update these spaces, they put their home in the hands of Normandy Designer Laura Barber, AKBD.

Starting with the kitchen, it needed to be showy for entertaining, but also practical for everyday use.


“The basic size and space of the kitchen offered a lot of options,” said Laura. “We opted to move the range to the back wall to create a beautiful focal point. This also freed up the island to use for food preparation and as an entertaining space.”

As you can see, gray cabinetry finishes brighten up the space. The backsplash also has a brown crackling in it to help combine the gray with the warmer tones of the floor and window trim, which are consistent with the rest of the home. Arched valances and corbels are also repeated throughout, emphasizing the kitchen’s traditional aesthetic.


A tin ceiling makes a statement and has a soft, silver finish that pulls in the silvery tones of the fixtures and faucet. The faucet speaks for itself, adding drama and interest. One reason it works so well is that there was a large space near the bay windows. In addition to the faucet placement, its blend of beauty and functionality adds to its shine.

Specialty storage makes the kitchen experience even that much more special. There is pull-out spice storage near the range and the island has a bread drawer, silverware organizer, and roll-outs for small appliances. Appliances were well-thought-out and included a large refrigerator armoire and convection microwave near the range.

custom pull out spice rack near the range

“From the layout to the appliances and colors, this kitchen now has a traditional style that is impressive and in line with the rest of the home,” noted Laura.

Phillippa38Moving onto the master bathroom – the original suite was too small, so expansion was the key. A nearby bedroom was utilized to create a large walk-in closet as well as make room for a larger shower and privatize the toilet.

“Since we took away a bedroom, we wanted to make sure to add one back in,” added Laura. “We converted the attic space so the home value would not be negatively impacted.”

traditional kitchen with industrial faucetThe new master suite is classic and luxurious. It features porcelain tile, classic finishes and a free-standing bathtub with a traditional floor-mount faucet. The vanity is unique and meant to look like a leaning wall mirror. Chandelier light fixtures and a Mother of Pearl backsplash in the shower also add a little bling. Just outside the bathroom there is a vanity space. It features a dressing table flanked by two tall cabinets, which provide storage for toiletries and towels.

Visit the Normandy Remodeling photo gallery for more photos of this project and other home renovations. Or, set up an appointment with Laura if you are ready to discuss transforming your home. You can also follow Normandy on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram for more design trends and ideas.


Arlington Heights Kitchen Expansion

L shaped kitchen with island in white cabinetry with white countertopsFormal dining rooms are not for everyone. In the case of this Arlington Heights renovation, the homeowners opted to gain extra square footage in their kitchen by expanding into their dining room. However, removing the dining room didn’t mean that they had to give up extra seating when entertaining. Here’s now Normandy Designer Liz Reifschneider made it all work.

Window seat in the kitchen adjacent to the island“The concept of expanding the kitchen into the dining room makes sense for those who do not need a formal dining space,” said Liz. “In this case, the joists ran parallel to the wall that we wanted to remove in between the kitchen and dining room, making it pretty straightforward. There weren’t any structural concerns as there are in a lot of cases.”

White on white kitchen with island and window seat “Although the dining room was removed, their new kitchen is much more open for entertaining,” added Liz. “In fact, the new space can still seat 10-12 guests.”

The space includes a large island with seating for two and a table for meals. There is also a bench near the window for additional seating for family and friends to gather together.

White kitchen cabinetry with a metal hoodIn addition to an open layout, this kitchen received an upgrade in style. The white, transitional space has an elegant, yet comfortable aesthetic. A few noteworthy elements include a Mother of Pearl backsplash, which has an iridescent quality to it, glass cabinetry and a chandelier over the island. The windows also flood the space with natural light.

Set up an appointment with Liz if you are ready to transform your kitchen. Or, register to attend an upcoming seminar to learn more about design trends and the remodeling process. You can also visit the Normandy photo gallery or follow Normandy Remodeling on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram for more beautiful designs.

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