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The Long View

The Long View

  • A sunny breakfast nook occupies the end of this St. Paul, Minn., kitchen by Albertsson Hansen Architecture.

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    A sunny breakfast nook occupies the end of this St. Paul, Minn., kitchen by Albertsson Hansen Architecture.

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    Adan Torres

    A sunny breakfast nook occupies the end of this St. Paul, Minn., kitchen by Albertsson Hansen Architecture.

  • A paneled, bookshelf-lined opening links the kitchen to a storage-friendly mudroom.

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    A paneled, bookshelf-lined opening links the kitchen to a storage-friendly mudroom.

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    Adan Torres

    A paneled, bookshelf-lined opening links the kitchen to a storage-friendly mudroom.

  • Architect Todd Hansen emphasized the kitchen's horizontality by using extra-long hardware and drawer fronts as well as a 12 and a half foot-long island.

    http://www.residentialarchitect.com/Images/tmp15F%2Etmp_tcm48-1168969.jpg

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    Architect Todd Hansen emphasized the kitchen's horizontality by using extra-long hardware and drawer fronts as well as a 12 and a half foot-long island.

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    Adan Torres

    Architect Todd Hansen emphasized the kitchen's horizontality by using extra-long hardware and drawer fronts as well as a 12 and a half foot-long island.

  • The room's mostly white color palette acts as a backdrop for displayed housewares.

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    The room's mostly white color palette acts as a backdrop for displayed housewares.

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    Adan Torres

    The room's mostly white color palette acts as a backdrop for displayed housewares.

 

The existing kitchen in this 1920s house lacked size, natural light, and a logical connection to the outdoors. So, as part of a larger renovation, architect Todd Hansen opted to more than double the room’s square footage by extending it 18 feet into the backyard. The St. Paul, Minn., home sits very close to the property line on its west side, but Hansen managed to bump out part of that wall by 11 inches, gaining enough width to fit an island into the kitchen. He also added on a generously sized mudroom that helps organize clutter and improves the overall connection to the yard.

By emphasizing the kitchen’s long, narrow shape, Hansen turned its unusual proportions into an asset. “We tried to play up the length with things we did in the design,” he says. “All the horizontal elements are exaggerated.” At 12 and a half feet, the island is longer than usual, as are the kitchen’s drawer fronts, cabinet handles, and 12-inch subway tiles. And a 10-foot-long piece of steel affixed to the east wall acts as a magnetic frame for children’s art.

Throughout the kitchen and its surrounding areas, this theme of framed objects continues. Open shelving and glass cabinets provide display space for housewares, while bookshelves and ceiling panels line the room’s two major entrances. Wall and ceiling panels also set off the tiled bay along the west wall. And painted molding outlines the breakfast nook, turning it into another framed element in this skillfully knit composition.

 

2012 Kitchen & Bath Design Guide