Architectural Details Make the Difference

No matter what period your kitchen, architectural details can add authenticity and style.

Architect Keith Malcolm Brown is an expert for adding architectural details in the kitchen. The possibilities are endless, he says, whether the entire room is done with period details, or a few are chosen as focal points for a more traditional or eclectic room. Here, his tips:

1. The three most prominent ways of adding period detail in a kitchen are with the cabinets, molding and cornices. Beadboard wainscoting is a charming, inexpensive way to add architectural charm.

2. When adding details, first determine in what period the rest of the house is designed, and let that be a guide. For example, the Colonial period usually uses simple, narrow moldings, while Regency and Federal periods use wider, more elaborate moldings.

3. The challenge of designing a kitchen in a period style is combining the historical look with modern functionality. Often, modern appliances can be hidden behind cupboard doors to maintain an authentic period look.

4. New manufacturing techniques have made it easier and more cost effective to add architectural details, which can be either custom or mass produced. Fiberglass, plastic and urethane for moldings, cornices, decorate ceiling plates, etc., give a period look that will last and resist rot. A tin ceiling can bring a touch of Victoria to any kitchen.

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