Creating a ‘Harmonious’ Kitchen

Out with the old and in with a new, elevated style featuring Monogram appliances

After 45 years in their “well-worn and well-loved” home, a retired Westport, Connecticut, couple set out to reimagine their mid-century abode. They tapped accomplished architect and kitchen designer Peggy Rubens-Duhl, AIA, to lead the renovation, with an emphasis on transforming a dark and dated galley kitchen.

The clients, both retired teachers, are imaginative and have a sincere appreciation for architecture and design, according to Rubens-Duhl, founder of the firm Fresh Architect.

“They have raised their family in this home and now have new interests in life, including photography, poetry and traveling,” she said.

One of the homeowners is a published photographer whose simple, serene style provided inspiration for the project, which entailed demolishing the rear of the house and building an addition to create an open kitchen, dining and living area.

“The renovation reflects the homeowners’ desire and vision for a spacious, light-filled kitchen with a fresh, uncluttered and warm design,” Rubens-Duhl says. “This was a complete transformation of flow, function and enjoyment of indoor and outdoor spaces with the kitchen now being the heart of the home.”

The clients say they “feel a sense of togetherness and harmony” due to the improved flow, enhanced functionality and elevated design in the kitchen — a design anchored by Monogram appliances.

The perfect complement to a modern home? The clean lines of Monogram appliances

The homeowners dreamed of a “modern, organic, light and harmonious” kitchen where family and friends would gravitate. They also sought multipurpose gathering spots, a large island with seating, functional cooking areas and a coffee and appliance bar — all of which Rubens-Duhl achieved in her design.

The new kitchen marries rich, contrasting materials such as bleached walnut cabinets, quartzite counters, a stacked-glass tile backsplash, and walnut beams that add drama to the new vaulted ceiling. Complementing the high-end design is a complete suite of Monogram appliances.

Choosing appliances was “exciting and very important” to the clients, who gravitated toward Monogram to meet their style and culinary needs.

“I thought the clean, modern lines of Monogram along with ease of use would appeal to my clients,” Rubens-Duhl says. “We selected appliances that would complement and even enhance the design of their new open, light-filled kitchen.”

The couple wanted a double oven and gas stove that were easy to use, so they traded their outdated electric stove for Monogram’s 48-inch Pro Range, which they were drawn to for its simplicity of design and function. A Monogram 48-Inch Hood Insert was built into a custom range hood and flanked by shelves, creating a streamlined look.

Monogram’s Fully Integrated Dishwasher features a custom panel to match the warm walnut cabinetry, and the 24-Inch Microwave Drawer provides multifunctional cooking that’s easy for the couple to access.

They also selected Monogram’s 30-inch Integrated Column Refrigerator and Freezer, which not only were integral to the design, but also their lifestyle. For years they had relied on a spare refrigerator and freezer in the basement, but the Monogram set provided ample capacity with a sleek aesthetic.

“The stainless-steel refrigerator and freezer columns flanking the coffee bar create a truly ethereal kitchen,” Rubens-Duhl says. “It’s hard to imagine the design as successful without these appliances.”

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