Although the homeowner was in love with this
charming 1929 Tudor Revival house and its
neighborhood, its uninspired kitchen was
outdated and claustrophobic, and the
ramshackle addition that served as its tiny
breakfast area was dull and uninviting.  As an
enthusiastic baker, she needed a more
spacious work area, and she dreamed of a
comfortable and gracious eating area in which
to relax informally with friends and family.  But
the essential challenge—from the viewpoint of
both architect and client—was that the new
construction needed to integrate seamlessly
with the style and character of the existing
home, complementing it both inside and out.

Having explored with the architect various
design options at the schematic level, the
homeowner selected a scheme that called for
the demolition of the existing breakfast area,
constructing in its place a 300-square foot
addition incorporating a new kitchen and a
spacious new eating area.  Although the
resulting new spaces are thoroughly modern
and efficient from a functional standpoint, their
overall scale and detailing—as well as the
traditional materials that are integrated
throughout—successfully link them in spirit to
the original portion of the home.

While professional-grade stainless steel
appliances are at the heart of the new kitchen,
the warm tones and simple lines of Shaker-
style cherry cabinetry lend an air of inviting
informality to the entire space.  To help impart
a sense of unity, cherry woodwork extends
into the new eating area in the form of
cabinetry designed to accommodate books,
houseplants, a small television, and also the
homeowner’s collection of objets d’art from her
extensive world travels.  Glass doors enclose
bookcases flanking a new gas fireplace, whose
welcoming glow is the focal point of the eating
area; the assemblage is capped by a solid
cherry mantel.  Handsome gray-green
limestone is employed for the countertops,
fireplace surround, and hearth—its non-
reflective honed finish reinforcing the
impression of serenity that pervades the whole

Daylight from all three sides floods the
addition, whose windows afford broad views of
the private garden beyond.  The detailing and
configuration of these window groupings
complements the existing architecture, and
they are fitted with wide interior casings
replicating those in the original portion of the
house.  A cheery yellow paint scheme enlivens
the spaces at all hours of the day, while a
subtle but effective array of general and task
lighting can be easily adjusted to suit the
desired mood.  Sustainably harvested bamboo
flooring extends throughout all new and
remodeled spaces, and this, too, helps
reinforce the overall sense of unity.  A french
door provides a view and direct access from
the kitchen to an adjacent patio, which in a
future phase of the project will be restored and
partially shaded by a pergola of cedar timbers
supporting fragrant, flowering vines.

Because the programmatic requirements for
the new kitchen and eating area were entirely
satisfied within the addition, the existing space
that formerly served as the kitchen was utilized
to create a much-needed powder room, as well
as a spacious walk-in pantry.
Mt. Lebanon Kitchen Addition
View from the Kitchen into the Eating Area,
and to the private garden beyond.
East wall of the addition, with windows overlooking the
Patio, and plant ledge and bookcase below.
View from the Eating Area into the Kitchen, with serving ledge
and bookcases below.  Period-inspired pendant lighting
reinforces the comfortable scale of the space.
Before Photos
Kitchen prior to
Kitchen prior to
View from Breakfast
Area to Kitchen prior
to renovations.
Eating Area fireplace, with flanking bookcases and
casement windows above.  Thick, insulative wall
construction affords extra-deep sills.
Breakfast Area prior
to renovations.