We are in the process of helping our lovely clients Lyle and Karen update and remodel their entire Santa Rosa home. The couple moved up to this “wine country gateway” city from LA late last year, buying a house with the intention of remodeling to fit their modern style.

Our first big project to tackle was the kitchen. Here’s what we started with . . .




Working with general contractor Sandy Caughey, we opened up the wall into their living room so they can have bar seating across from the cooktop.


Visual Jill designer Lauren’s elevation drawing

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We also transformed a simple pocket door leading to the dining room into a wider doorway with open shelving on either side to display Karen’s great teapot collection.

On the other side of the kitchen, Lauren designed the upper cabinets to feature a milky film pressed between two thin pieces of glass so that they highlight the shapes within, without showing clutter.


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Here are the upper cabinets before the special film and glass were inserted.

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This photo shows the finished cabinets lit from within.

Lighting was a key consideration in our design, since we had specific areas we wanted to highlight for aesthetic purposes (the glass-front cabinets, the display shelves, and the mosaic tile), in addition to providing ample functional lighting (pendants and inset lights).

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The cabinetry left of the sink under the glass cabinets hides our clients’ most-used kitchen appliances, yet keeps them easily accessible.

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KITCHEN DESIGN & FUNCTIONALITYAn overview of the overall kitchen layout.

Now that Lyle and Karen are enjoying their new kitchen, we’re moving on to the rest of the house!

Please note: these are “in progress” photos, not styled or shot professionally.

Resource list:

  • Floor tile: Porcelain Volcano Grigio 9 x 36″ gray tile (from Import Tile in Berkeley)
  • Glass mosaic tile: Wall Glass Tile from Tileshop in Berkeley (product #VOTOB3/sm)
  • Countertops: Caesarstone Pure White
  • Cabinetry: custom-made maple (created by Sandy Caughey’s in-house cabinetmaker)
  • Pendants: Sky Pendants from Room & Board



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