Kitchen Redesign for the Next Generation of Family Gatherings

white kitchen with large island that seats sixTimes change, trends change, and what people need from their homes change. All three of these truths came into play when a Western Springs family called Normandy Designer Laura Barber to refresh their home. The couple’s children are grown. Weddings and baby showers fill the calendar, and a new generation will soon be ready for their seats at the table, making this the ideal time to rethink nagging issues and face this next chapter with a fresh look.

They had previously remodeled their kitchen in the early 2010s, just as the first wave of the white kitchen revolution was landing. Concerned that white was a passing trend, the company they worked with recommended dark wood. “Since then, their style has evolved from very traditional to more transitional,” says Laura. White cabinets and light-colored finishes have certainly proven their staying power and align with their new vision for the home.

This work goes beyond a surface refresh. “There were some issues to correct,” says Laura, mentioning, “the baseball diamond island was creating too much open dead space, and the side-by-side ovens were too low for comfort.” She also notes that the family uses the dining room often and wanted to create better flow from the kitchen.

Slab backsplash with metal hoodAfter a dozen years of living with choices that didn’t work, they knew what they wanted. Laura kept the good, adjusted for the not-so-good, and delivered a refreshed home with a stellar kitchen.

Out came the oddly shaped island. It was replaced with a substantially sized squared-off island that anchors the space and offers seating for six. It provides a place to prepare meals and is also an inviting spot for coffee or knocking out a few quick emails. Below the seating space, the island offers hidden storage for less frequently used items.

The new cooktop and hood are across from the island, in the same spot as before, now with several drawers below to store everything from pots and pans to spices. New double ovens are stacked at a comfortable height to the left, creating a practical workspace and eliminating the hassle of crouching to check if the roast is done. A warming drawer is tucked in across from the ovens and cooktop.

dark stained bar area next to white kitchenAn old drywall pantry is now a pretty bar area and butler’s pantry connecting the kitchen and frequently used dining room. “We closed up a round window and gained more storage and shelving space for glasses, bottles, and dinnerware,” Laura says, adding, “They’re all about entertaining and having everything handy makes it convenient to host.”

The results are visually stunning, but also very mindfully executed to make the home more enjoyable for everyone.

If your space isn’t everything you want it to be, it might be time to remodel. Whether you want to enjoy time in the kitchen more or are thinking of more sweeping changes to your home, you can set up a time to talk with Laura to talk about the possibilities. For more inspiration, visit the photo gallery and follow Normandy Remodeling on Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest for more home tips and ideas.


white painted kitchen with slab backsplash and metal hood pairs with dark stained island    White kitchen with double ovens and metal hood

White kitchen with divided sink  white kitchen with stained island  white kitchen with stained bar

Case Studies

Schedule an Appointment