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Real home: Cooking is designed to be a social activity in this trendy kitchen

Roisín Lafferty transforms a modern space into a kitchen filled with flair and excitement
   EKBB Magazine  |  written on: 03-04-2022 14:00pm

Imagine a new-build apartment, its kitchen a bland, uninspiring white box. Try to marry that with the style of a dynamic young couple, Brona and Tom Karlsson, and their love of socialising, and it’s not difficult to see why they desired a new room design.

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- Owners/residents: Brona and Tom Karlsson
- Designer: Roisín Lafferty, managing director of Kingston Lafferty Design
- Style: Contemporary
- Kitchen feature: As cooking is designed to be a social activity in this kitchen, the hob has been placed at the centre of the island, with the oven below, making it is easy to chat to friends at the table while preparing dinner

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“Brona and Tom wanted to add some fun and design flair to the kitchen,” explains Roisín Lafferty, managing director of Kingston Lafferty Design, who was called in to undertake the interior design of the three-bedroom apartment in East London. “Brona is from Ireland, Tom from Finland and they both have busy jobs in finance, so my brief was to create a cooking-dining area that felt like a buzzing restaurant, with colour and energy to reflect their personalities, lifestyle and some of the vibrant style of Hackney,” she says.

Roisín’s starting point was to create the most spacious feel. Three distinct zones ensure that the design is functional, as well as attractive – one wall is used for tall cabinets and the sink area, with a central island bar and cooking zone overlooking a dining area with banquette seating. “I wanted to provide as much storage, with hidden appliances, as possible to create a clean, sleek feel,” explains Roisín, “but at the same time, we needed to add warmth and texture, which is why we designed the copper pipe feature over the island.”

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This also includes in-built lighting to illuminate the island. An inspired mix of cement and metro tiles, chevron flooring and marble add to the copper detailing and create lots of interest, as do mirrors which reflect light and boost the sense of space. Handleless cabinetry painted in minty green creates an unfussy backdrop. “We chose a playful colour which works well with the copper elements in the room,” says Roisín. And the finishing touches? Copper pendant lights and a neon-framed mirror. “They make a small room really stand out,” she says.

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Q & A – Roisín Lafferty, managing director of Kingston Lafferty Design

- Can you tell us about the design of the island?
Cooking is designed to be a social activity in this kitchen so here we made the hob the centre of the island, with oven below, so it is easy to chat to friends at the table while preparing dinner. We also chose a downdraft extractor which pops up from the countertop, so as not to disrupt the sight line from the hob. The island is clad in a marble-effect quartz which is smooth and hardwearing, and as you enter the kitchen, you see a beautiful waterfall panel of quartz rather than an edge of furniture.

- And the design of the wall run?
One of my pet hates is a gap at the top of kitchen cabinets, because it’s simply a place for dust to gather. To avoid this, and to make the most of the tall ceiling height in the room, we framed the cabinetry in metro tiles. A mirror-backed niche makes a place to store bottles, with a copper bar and custom-made ladder so that they are easily accessible.

- How did you create the decorative tile design?
They are designed to create a ribbon effect, running across the floor and up the wall, to surround an inset bevelled mirror, which makes the space feel bigger. The punch of pattern from the tiles is uplifting and fun.

Credit: Barbara Corsico and Lind & Cumings Design Photography (Images), Amelia Thorpe (Words)
Published: As featured in EKBB Magazine, Issue 253

Also read:
An East London property that celebrates its 19th century setting
An eclectic kitchen with a dark, dramatic side

Tell us:
Do you think this kitchen fulfils the buzzing restaurant brief? Comment below.

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   EKBB Magazine
The UK's No.1 kitchen, bathroom and bedroom magazine dedicated to real-life luxury homes and turning your design dreams into reality.

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