3 Areas Where Historic Homeowners Must Find Balance in Kitchen Design

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3 Areas Where Historic Homeowners Must Find Balance in Kitchen Design

23 August 2023
 Categories: , Blog

Do you own a historical home? Then you have a unique challenge compared to owners of newer houses. You need to balance not only your own taste in kitchen design but also the historical feel of the property. Balancing the historical integrity of the home with your personal style involves combining a range of design choices. Here are three of the most impactful design choices and how to find the right mix.

1. Classic Layouts

Kitchens have changed significantly over the century. The family kitchen used to house only a few fixtures or appliances. It was generally smaller and placed less conveniently to other activities. It was also often closed off from adjoining rooms. And there were ancillary spaces like larders, pantries, and butler's pantries. 

How much should your layout fit with these older notions of kitchen use? In general, you should respect the period layout just like you would respect the period architecture as they are part of its charm and appeal. So don't rip out all the walls and install wall-to-wall cabinets. But it's okay to make smaller concessions, such as adding a large window to enhance natural sunlight and airiness. 

2. Real vs Faux

How much should you 'fake it until you make it'? The choice between real or faux often depends on your goals and budget. If your intent is to preserve the historical nature of the building, you want to preserve as much of the original material as is feasible. Every modern reproduction could damage the overall value of the house. 

Considering how renovations can damage the home's original materials, locating or creating real vintage elements can get prohibitively expensive. Recreations of such elements may also not be fit for modern life. Don't spend half your budget on an antique ice box that won't be big enough or work well enough to keep your own food cold. Instead, put that money into permanent decor and look for a modern style that fits in sufficiently. 

3. Modern Conveniences

As much as owners of historic homes love the vintage look and feel of their houses, they probably don't want to actually go back to doing everything as it was once done. Things were harder in many ways—and in the kitchen in particular. You need a kitchen that's appropriate for today's lifestyle. 

The good news is that you can have modern conveniences without sacrificing the historic look. Opt for appliances with false fronts. Tuck appliances into the pantry or butler's pantry. And make use of tricks like appliance garages to keep things out of sight. 

Where to Start

Find the right balance in these three areas by meeting with an experienced home and kitchen remodeling service in your local area. No matter what you end up choosing to do, their help will make it a success.