Triple L Farm Project Spotlight

We are sharing details for the kitchen from our Triple L Farm Project for this month’s spotlight. This project, a new construction build, is on an existing cattle farm right here in Monmouth County, NJ. The clients, fulfilling a lifelong dream to own a farm, came to us knowing that a modern farmhouse was exactly what they wanted to complete this dream.

We had the pleasure of coming in on the project early during the planning process. This early involvement made a huge difference in the final outcome of the kitchen. The original architectural plans heavily focused on the structural elements and the esthetic of the exterior of the home.

The Triple L Farm Project clients recognized that the architectural plans were the perfect foundation for the new home, however they were lacking in spatial practicality and function for the interior spaces. The next step was to dedicate equal attention to the the flow of the interior spaces, in order for the home to meet the family’s wants and needs.

This is where we came in on the project. Town & Country Design Studio designer, Christine Bolton, notes that one of her favorite parts of this project was working closely with homeowner, Lillian and her daughter, Lauren. Together they re-worked the flow of the main living space, particularly in the kitchen area, serving as the family hub. “This is not only a working farm, but a working home and needed to function as such.”

Once the new layout was determined the finishes and farmhouse design came together naturally.

Farmhouse Style

Known for it’s feeling of warmth and comfort, farmhouse design mixes materials to create an effortlessly classic look. Coined from an incredibly practical place, farmhouse design was not a style but originated literally as a shelter for farmers. From the beginning, these homes were build from what was readily available from the land itself. For this reason, natural materials and textures; such as wood, metal, and stone have always been at the foundation of farm homes.

Modern Farmhouse

Today, Modern Farmhouse design integrates modern conveniences, updated design styles, and wide variety of materials, therefore shaping the evolution of what we now think of Farmhouse design. Use of natural materials have always been heavily emphasized in farmhouse design. Current updates like mixing warm wood tones with brighter whites are now common indicators of this style. Typically, although now more thoughtfully planned, there is still a blend of old and new elements incorporated into each space. Subtle detailing on cabinetry to infuse a more polished furniture feel are often incorporated with decorative moldings and trims.

Achieving the look

As a working farm, it’s only natural that this project would beg to celebrate the farmhouse style. Inspiration for this project was not only drawn from the existing buildings and livestock on the property, but also from the family who call it home.

Custom cabinetry allowed us to incorporate all the important design elements and practical function that the family wanted for this central space in the home.

Great materials and design are only successful when implemented by professionals with the same attention to detail as what was put into the preparation. We brought in Eric Seebald, of Seebald Construction LLC, to execute the kitchen installation.

Stained rustic alder wood beautifully offsets the crisp white of the cabinetry throughout the kitchen. This image offers a beautiful overview of all the special elements thoughtfully incorporated into this space. Mixed metals and materials throughout this space create an effortless yet interesting classic space to behold. Large windows at main cleaning sink overlook a beautiful view of the farm, each view a reminder of a dream coming true.

Long time acquaintance to the client, Interior Designer Robert Hesslein, infused some helpful expertise throughout the home, the the slightly rustic subway tile backsplash was one of those touches that beautifully pair’s with the Taj Mahal quartzite countertops used throughout the kitchen. A single rustic wood shelf supported by custom brass brackets are the perfect focal point for a collection of favorite things.

The client’s knew they wanted beams throughout the first floor, reminiscent of traditional barn structures. In addition to the kitchen, Seebald was tasked with creating these beams and columns for the home.

Details Count

Whether seeking farmhouse esthetic because you are a farmer in need of stylish shelter or just love the modern interpretation of this iconic look, materials and details are key to successfully getting this look. Check out some of the purposeful details we incorporated into this project to get the style just right!

Core of the Kitchen

Originally. farm kitchens centered around the iconic farm table, today kitchens more commonly revolve around a center island. Most islands wear many hats, which vary based on the kitchen.

This island was designed to offer the best of everything for the room’s central axis. Finishing details paired with luxury hardware crafted in England give the look of fine furniture. A prep sink located near the stove, storage, seating, and ample countertop space means this island is up for anything.

Open Shelving

The client, an avid cook, wanted a place in the kitchen where she could display and easily access her cookbook collection.

“She didn’t want them stored in the island” Christine remembers of the design process. Together they agreed that open shelving tucked between the range and the refrigerator was an ideal location for this storage.

Namesake Fixtures

This kitchen has not one, but two beautiful white fireclay farm sinks for wash and prep use. The main cleanup sink, pictured right, is beautifully framed in an base that matches the accent finish in the kitchen.

This sink base feels like an old piece of furniture. This look is achieved by adding details like the arched toe area and extending the base forward from the adjacent cabinets.

Proper Storage

Not just an attractive accent, these pullout baskets are a nod to the origins of a farm kitchen where practicality was king. Perfect for keeping produce off the counters and close by where you will need them, and best yet the offer optimal storage conditions.

Farmhouse design is a scheme that is easy to live with and is intended to be a unique curation of those who inhabit the spaces. Whether it is through some simple styling choices or a large construction project, if you are looking to infuse farmhouse style in your home, we encourage you to make it your own.

Our clients came to us with a great vision of what they wanted this home to be. Through collaboration, we were able to use our expertise to bring their dream kitchen to life. We are proud to be part of making this dream a reality for them. We sincerely hope they love this space as much as we enjoyed creating it with them.

Meet Triple L Farm

As you probably have gathered, Triple L Farm is not just what we have lovingly dubbed this project as. It is the actual name of the farm itself. New Jersey’s small size, proximity to large cities and shore lines sometimes overshadow our agricultural attributes. This farm is a special place, celebrating the reason our state is known as the Garden State. We encourage you to follow them on Instagram to follow along their journey.

Triple L Farm Project Spotlight Sourcing

Design and Materials (as specified in this article): Town & Country Design Studio

Cabinetry installation and custom beam work: Seebald Construction

Photography: Chris Delaney

Photoshoot Staging: Kristen Mehl and T&C Mercantile with client’s personal accessories.

Backsplash Tile: Tiled Interiors

Interested in learning more about the history of this iconic design style? Check out this great article on Hunker.com

Project Spotlight: Ocean Avenue Outdoor Project

As we welcome the start of summer at “The Shore,” we knew it was the perfect time to spotlight our Ocean Avenue Outdoor Project. The clients for this project are all about family and enjoying the coastal locale of this home. Located across the street from the ocean, this beach home is the hub for three generations to enjoy the sun and sand.

The overall scope of this project was a two story great room addition and an ultimate outdoor entertaining space. To achieve this, the client’s long time Interior Designer, Robert Wilson, came to us to help create the outdoor kitchen that would serve as the center of this new indoor/outdoor oasis.

A Chef’s Dream

The main outdoor kitchen is any chef’s dream featuring a ton of storage and just about every appliance possible. Stunning slabs of Jet Mist Granite top the main kitchen and bar, offering the perfect surface to work on.

Built for Elements

The cabinetry used is marine grade stainless-steel with a powder coated finish, a great outdoor material . We chose a subtle white washed wood looking finish in a classic shaker style for all the base cabinetry.

Outdoor Kitchen with louvered doors and farm sink

Taking the opportunity to mix it up, the louvered doors on the upper cabinets over the sink complement the shake siding beautifully.

The client really wanted a farm sink for the main kitchen sink and a dishwasher for easy clean up. Knowing the harsh environment that the salty ocean air provides, with Robert Wilson, we guided the client to materials that would be hard working against the elements and lower maintenance.

The Asko dishwasher, along with all of the appliances used are specifically built for outdoor use featuring high-grade stainless-steel interior components.

Taking Care

Something we run into is the assumption that, because products are considered outdoor friendly and even “marine-grade,” these products are indestructible. Understanding and, more importantly, executing proper care and maintenance is crucial for protecting the investment of these superior products. Regular cleaning and covering the cabinetry and appliances during off seasons or when not in use is so important. When properly maintained, your investment will be safe for years to come.

Easy Breezy

Large Nana Doors on the backyard and ocean side of the new addition open for a true indoor/outdoor living experience. When open, they allow for a beautiful cross breeze from the water to flow through the spaces. A classic white pergola frames the upper patio with integrated lighting and a retractable awning. This stunning addition makes for effortless day to night, rain or shine entertaining.

Bottom’s Up

The bar features a kegerator, refrigerator/freezer drawers, ice maker, and a prep sink.

There is a designated “workspace” and a raised bar top which offers plenty of room for everyone to pull up a stool and watch the game on the large tv behind the bar while enjoying a signature brew fresh from the tap!

Fringe Benefits

We all know the benefits of spending time outdoors, therefore it is nothing new to state that having a haven right out your door will improve your wellbeing. In addition to health benefits, investing in quality materials for a usable outdoor space will also improve your home’s value. Who doesn’t love that benefit?

Like indoor spaces, outdoor living is such an important part of enjoying your home, especially during favorable seasons. A well-designed patio or yard can offer significant square footage to a home. The added space is always a welcome opportunity for gatherings and entertaining!

Regardless of the size or function of your outdoor living, we encourage everyone to explore ways to enjoy and beautify not only the inside, but also the outside of their homes!

Ocean Avenue Outdoor Project Spotlight Sourcing

Kitchen Design, Cabinetry and Countertops: Town & Country Design Studio

Interior Designer and Furnishings: Robert Wilson, operates through Zacksons

Builder: Mark Robbins

Architect: Melillo | Bauer | Carman Landscape Architecture

Photography: Steven Paul Whitsitt Photography

Project Spotlight: Cranmoor Drive Project

This month, we are finally shining the spotlight on our Cranmoor Drive Project. This project was a combined effort, executed by builder, Padula Builders, with interior designer, Tracy Pearce Interior Design, and our Design Team. This fully custom, new construction home was completed last year and has been patiently waiting for its moment to shine.

Why the wait?

In anticipation of this feature article we kept the project under wraps, but we are excited to report that this project is featured in this month’s issue of Industry Magazine. In the article, Industry beautifully highlights the combined efforts and obvious benefits of hiring a team of professionals to execute a luxury project like this.

Before you head off to check out the Industry Magazine article, stick around to see additional images and spaces beyond the featured article. In this spotlight we are focusing on the areas near and dear to our hearts from the Cranmoor Drive Project. Below you will find additional details and insights on some of the spaces we helped create. We are also sharing some pro tips along the way for those who find inspiration in these spaces.

Kitchen

This kitchen is one of our favorites to date. We had plenty of room to work with, with a large open footprint and high ceilings it was important that the room felt airy yet cozy. Rustic Cherry stained base cabinets ground the room, while pale taupe-grey painted uppers balance the space, keeping it from being dark or heavy.

The high ceilings afforded the opportunity to incorporate rustic beams that span across the open concept living space. The overall styling of the space, like the entire home, begged to be classic and understated.

We kept with mostly clean lines for the hard surfaces. The “x” mullion detail in the stacked wall cabinets offer just the right visual break to accentuate the beautiful custom cabinetry.

We adore the dropped pendant light fixtures Tracy Pearce Interior design selected for the center island. They have an effortlessly luxurious feel, perfect for the home.

White and rustic stained wood kitchen

Pro Tip:

High ceilings are often desirable for clients, but can significantly increase material costs in a kitchen. If you love these high ceilings, keep this in mind when planning and budgeting for a new kitchen! For instance, going from a standard 8′ ceiling to 9′ height, you can expect to spend an average of 3-10% more for your cabinetry alone. Costs will vary based on a number of variable such as style, function, and cabinetry manufacturer.

stained wood base cabinets and White painted cabinets

If you know us well, you probably are already aware, but we love mixing metals in spaces. This kitchen offers the classic combination of brass hardware and dark plumbing fixtures. In this kitchen the hardware finish, which will age and patina with use, which will only enhance the casual feel of this kitchen over the years.

Pro Tip:

Unlacquered brass hardware is a gorgeous finish and very popular at the moment. Although beautiful, this finish is not always the right choice for everyone or every space. In our design practice, we believe in the importance of educating our clients of the pros and cons when considering materials for their home. Unlacquered brass is a living finish, which means it “raw” and as such will change. If you like the way a finish looks brand new and will not be happy with the aging effects a living finish may not be a good fit for your project. Most finishes offer some level of change over time, consider selecting finishes that have been coated to help preserve the original finishing of the fixture. Look for lacquered or PVD finish options, these coatings are designed to help regulate wear.

Inset Stained Cabinetry with Brass Hardware

The difference between cabinetry and custom cabinetry is in the details. In this kitchen, we used Rutt Handcrafted Cabinetry. This image highlights the special detailing of the cabinetry door style and the thoughtful attention to highlighting the specially selected wood material. The placement of that knot in the wood is no accident in this space!

Bathing Beauties

We got to help create some pretty lovely bathrooms in this home as well. Below is a gallery of these spaces!

Regal Spa-like Master Bathroom

Bespoke finishes and extreme attention to detail make this master suite pure luxury. Everything from the handpainted wallcovering in the bedroom, to the soaking tub, and even the custom cabinetry and finishing continues from the bathroom through the master closet (not pictured) make this space the ultimate master retreat.

Each Bathroom is designed in their own selection of finishes and styles to make each room unique. The continued use of horizontal ship lap on the walls is a nice touch to create a cohesive feel for the bathrooms throughout the house.

Custom Creations

Projects like the Cranmoor Drive Project allow designers and craftspeople the opportunity to do their best work. A client who trusts the teams they have hired and are open to thinking beyond what is expected, are often rewarded with spaces that are completed beyond what they could have imagined. The early concepts of this wine room were much like a napkin sketch, pulling design inspiration from several places. Through careful planning and expert execution this vision is now a showcase space in the main living space of the home.

The basement boasts a myriad of features, including a wet bar, golf simulator (shown in Industry Article), and home theatre. Among the special attributes on this level of the home, this cozy nook (below) is a space we are particularly proud of. Again, offering the benefits of having a great team on a project to take a concept and make it reality. The entire banquet, shown below, was built completely onsite. We sourced the parts in the same materials as the bar cabinetry to continue the pub feel in the space.

Custom Banquette seating in the basement entertainment zone

We know that the pictures tell so much of a home’s story, for that reason we kept this feature short and sweet. We hope you enjoyed this little deep dive behind some of these spaces.

Do you have a question about this project? Interested in working with this team of professionals for your home project? Please feel free to reach out at general@townandcountrydesignstudio.com.

Project Sources

Builder: Padula Builders, Inc.

Interior Designer: Tracy Pearce Interior Design

Cabinetry Design and Sourcing: Town & Country Kitchen and Bath

Architect: Aquatecture Associates

Photography: Chris James Photography

Project Feature

Want more of our Cranmoor Drive Project Spotlight? Check out the Industry Magazine, Just Add Water article here to see read more about this project collaboration.

Recipe: Chicken Enchiladas Verde

This month, we are sharing The Blonde Shallot’s Chicken Enchiladas Verde recipe. The Blonde Shallot, owned by Jessica Rogers, is locally based in Little Silver NJ. Specializing in accessible quality food; they offer salads, soups, and so much more which can be picked up from their market or delivered to your home.

As we look toward welcoming Spring, we were craving something tasty and satisfying yet fresh and lively. When we asked Jess to share a favorite recipe for our March feature, the minute we heard “chicken enchiladas verde,” we knew that was the perfect dish to help kick off the season.

The Blonde Shallot's Chicken Enchiladas Verde

Ingredients:

  • 2 Tblsp. Butter
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 (8oz) pkg cream cheese, softened & cut in large cubes
  • 2 (4oz) can diced green chiles
  • 1 tsp kosher salt
  • ½ tsp cumin
  • 2 Tblsp. minced cilantro
  • 2 cups cooked shredded chicken breast (Jessica uses 1 rotisserie chicken)
  • 8 soft corn tortillas
  • 1 (16oz) jar salsa verde (she like’s Herdez)
  • 2 cups shredded Mexican cheese

Preparation:

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Spray a 9 x 13 baking pan with cooking spray and set aside.
  2. Melt butter in large skillet or pot over medium heat. Add onion and cook for 5 minutes, until softened. Add in salt, cumin, and garlic and cook for one minute more, until fragrant.
  3. Stir in cream cheese and reduce heat to medium-low and stir continuously until melted nicely. Stir in green chiles, cilantro, chicken and ½ cup salsa verde and mix well.
  4. To soften tortillas, place between damp paper towels and microwave for 1 minute. This should help them to avoid cracking, but if they do, microwave for an additional 30 seconds.
  5. Divide filling evenly between 8-10 tortillas, about ⅓ cup in each. Roll tortillas and place them seam side down in the pan. Cover chicken enchiladas with remaining salsa and sprinkle with the cheese. Place in
    oven and bake for 12-15 minutes, until cheese is lightly browned on top.

Serve:

Garnish with chopped cilantro and scallion. Dig In!

Perfect Pairings:

Naturally, enchiladas pair perfectly with chips, fresh salsa, and an ice cold light beer, but we are partial to a sangria pairing. We like this Easy Red Wine Sangria recipe, great as is and easily customizable for seasonal or flavor preferences.

Details on The Blonde Shallot

Jess Rogers, Owner and Chef of The Blonde Shallot

Visit their website to order for pick up or delivery and follow their Instagram for updates to their market selections.

Location: 471 Prospect Avenue, Little Silver, NJ

Contact: 732.383.5302

Also, check out this APP Article to learn more about The Blonde Shallot!

Thank You, Jess, for sharing this special recipe with us and our readers!

Share with us

If you make this recipe we would love for you to share it with us! Tag us on Facebook or Instagram and let us know what you think! #cookinwithtckb

Project Spotlight: Sunset Avenue Project

Sunset Avenue Project Background

Our clients purchased a rundown Victorian home, built in a shore town’s glory days of the early 20th century. The home would become their weekend haven to escape the busy city. A place to welcome friends and family, and enjoy the coastal area’s evolving cultural and culinary scene.

The house, although beautiful in its character, was in need of a top to bottom renovation. The client’s goal was to keep as much of the original charm and infuse their own, more urban, style to create a home that felt effortlessly stylish and chic.

They came to Town & Country to help with the kitchen and master bathroom, two important rooms in the project.

Kitchen

Sunset Avenue Project - White and wood kitchen

The clients wanted the kitchen to feel bright and open. We chose crisp white painted cabinets with warm accents to balance the classic home’s architecture and infuse some of the couple’s more modern style. Traditional inset type cabinet construction with a modern stepped detail on the door and drawers continue the mission of marrying styles in the home.

The high ceilings on the first floor allow this modestly sized kitchen to feel larger. We maximized this height with stacked wall cabinets and lit glass sections for displaying special pieces.

  • Sunset Avenue Project Kitchen peninsula and favorite art
  • Sunset Avenue Project Peninsula Seating

The original kitchen layout had a small addition that served as a breakfast nook. The patio french doors, a main access point for the home, made flow to the door, table sizing and placement awkward. A formal dining, adjacent to the kitchen, eliminated the couples need for another dining table, however the clients wanted some seating for casual meals and entertaining. The kitchen’s overall size did not allow for a center island, instead we designed a peninsula that would offer some seating, additional countertop space and create a nice separate entry space at the french doors.

  • Contemporary Cabinet Knob
  • Contemporary Cabinet Pull
  • Brushed Stainless Steel Pulldown Kitchen Faucet

Sleek Brushed Stainless Steel hardware pulls offer a modern detail to the classic space. The Stainless Steel farm sink and a contemporary pull down faucet nicely accent the appliances.

*See farm sink in the peninsula image above.

Master Bathroom

The Master Suite was created on the third floor, originally unfinished storage space for the home. True to Victorian style architecture, this space fills various steeply pitched roof lines, creating unique ceiling heights and angles for the space inside.

The master bathroom sits in a cluster of the dormer alcoves, which created some interesting design challenges.

The only place in the room that the vanity could go was a dormer that provided the only natural light in the room.

The windows made it so the countertop would have to be shorter than typically specified. This challenge created the opportunity for added interest with these drum vessel sinks and tall goose neck faucets.

*Kitchen bridge faucets were used in order to accommodate the vessel sink height and create a more prominent focal feature.

We had to work around another obstacle in the room. A main piece of ductwork that ran along the wall under the window. We needed to hide the ductwork, and still provide a fair amount of storage. This vanity is a perfect example of making custom crafted cabinetry work to it’s full advantage. From the outside you would never now what this furniture looking vanity is hiding.

*Check out the next picture for a peak inside the vanity.

Old homes can often present a fair share of challenges, but with some creativity and the right resources can be highly rewarding. We loved working on this project and helping our client’s bring new life into this old treasure!

We hope you enjoyed this spotlight into our Sunset Avenue Project.

Sunset Avenue Project Spotlight Sources

Design: Town & Country Kitchen and Bath

Custom Cabinetry: Town & Country Kitchen and Bath Bespoke Cabinetry

Cabinetry, Countertop and Hardware: Specified, sourced and supplied by TCKB Designs

Styling: T&C Mercantile

Photography: Patricia Burke Photography

Project Spotlight: Conover Lane Project

This month’s featured project spotlight is our Conover Lane Project. It seemed fitting to shine the spotlight on one of our most romantically styled design projects during the month most associated with love. We think you’ll agree!

Project Overview

Fellow designer, Joan Norkus, of Boxwood LLC Interior Design was hired to bring this full home renovation project to life. Joan brought us into this project to help with the design and execution of the kitchen and sitting room dry bar.

From the first meeting with the client we knew that this space would be special. The client explained that she loved pink, which Joan had planned to incorporate the color throughout the home. “Is it crazy to have pink cabinets?” we remember the client asking. The client’s husband (Valentine of the year) said that he was fine with whatever his wife chose for finishes.

The new layout of the home provided a formal sitting room off the foyer, this room is a perfect welcome for this couple’s family and friends. The rug set the tone for the finishes in this room. We pulled one of the deeper tones from the rug to create the custom Raspberry Pudding dry bar. We love the beautiful balance of bold modern elements and traditional antique pieces that Joan incorporated into this spaces furnishings.

Wide Open Spaces

From the siting room you enter the open concept kitchen, dining, living space with a stunning view of the Navesink River.

Our joint focus was to create some separation of the individual spaces in this open room, yet ensure that everything was cohesive. A structural column in the room created a natural separation allowing the room be the divided into 4 quadrants; kitchen, sitting area, dining, and living room.

A Pink Kitchen

Wanting the kitchen to be a special reflection of the client’s unique style, yet striving for a space that would be timeless, we made the strategic decision that the cabinetry would be a special stain on Quarter Sawn Oak wood. This linear grained wood presented a more classic, even masculine, juxtaposition to the delicately pink toned stain. This combination offers a beautiful balance for the couple.

Special Finishes

The client fell in love with a marble countertop, on display in our showroom, confirming that decision early on. Brass finishes were planned for many of the selections in the home. We wanted to carry that into the kitchen for consistency, but also put it a little spin on it. We chose a brass finish with a rosy-tone for the cabinet hardware and plumbing fixtures. Although subtle, this variation creates a nice transition from the pink toned cabinetry to the more gold toned brass finishes of the lighting and other elements in the open concept living space.

The bronze metal custom made range hood features a tapered curve to offset the curved detail of the window on the adjacent wall. The finish also boasting the slighted touch of pink, yet deeper than the lighting, hardware, and plumbing in the room, building on the room’s palette.

*Design Tip:

The days requiring all metals to match perfectly are gone. Although it can create a consistent look, which may be right for a particular design, we love layering elements. Don’t be afraid to play around with this by mixing finishes, metal or otherwise. in a space. When done well, it makes the design in a space much more interesting and personal.

Design Detailing

If you have to do dishes, this wouldn’t be a bad spot to do them. We love how this sink wall turned out. The curved window was something that the client knew she wanted in the kitchen from day 1. We kept the window wall free of upper cabinetry to make it one of the room’s focal points. A combination of printed and Calcutta Marble tile backsplash accent the window, which is finished off with these stunning vintage sconces that the client had purchased years ago in hopes of using them someplace special.

The center island was designed to feel more like built-in furniture than cabinetry. To achieve this, we integrated legs on all four corners and a vertical apron between the legs to give the island a table look.

When possible, we like to conceal functional elements that may not be very esthetically pleasing. Microwaves are often an important element in a kitchen, however these appliances are not always the most attractive. By placing them on the working side of an island, it is in a convenient location for use, but less conspicuous from most vantage points in the room.

It was a joy to be a part of this project and we are thrilled with the final outcome. We hope our clients will enjoy their new home for many years to come!

Conover Lane Project Spotlight Sources

Kitchen and Dry Bar design and cabinetry, hood, and hardware: Town & Country Kitchen and Bath

Interior Design and Furnishing for these spaces: Joan Norkus, Boxwood LLC Interior Design

Backsplash Material sourced through Downtown Tile

Photographs: Patricia Burke Photography

Want More?

Click the image below to read the cover story article featuring this project in Monmouth Health & Life.

Project Spotlight: Elm Road Project – Planning

We are kicking off this year’s project spotlight with one that was over a year in the making, finally debuted in the fall of 2020. Our Elm Road Project was a new construction home with the initial intention to be featured as a Designer Showhouse through Aspire Magazine. Then the house would become the new home of the young family having it built.

In this spotlight, we are focusing on some of the behind the scenes planning parts of the project that took place well before it was furnished and open the the public.

The furnishing and Showhouse is a part of the story that will come later.

A Different Approach

This project was unique in many ways, mostly because it wasn’t just a Showhouse and it wasn’t just a new construction home for a client. Typically, the approach to these two types of projects is very different.

When working with a client, designing their home, we are working directly with the end user of the project. Therefore, we focus on making decisions that will serve their needs and ideal lifestyle specifically.

Alternatively, when we participate in a Showhouse project, there are typically many different designers involved in a single homem each completing an individual space. The focus for each space is to provide inspiration and highlight their work in a unique way to be enjoyed by many people. This usually results in a wide variety of styles throughout.

We were brought into the project very early, hired by the clients to make the hard surface design and decisions for the entire home. Since the homeowners would eventually be calling this their home, it was important that the permanent materials and building elements would create a cohesive flow for the home beyond the Designer’s Showhouse debut.

The client wanted a fusion of California modern with Asian influences for their home. Our goal was to incorporate these desired styles of the client with fresh perspectives to help set the the tone for a truly special showhouse.

Starting from Scratch

With new construction projects specifically, it is our job to bring life to the flat nature of architectural plans. We add dimension to these drawings by planning the spaces as they will be used and feel when you are in them.

it all starts with a plan

Set the mood

We use mood boards when designing spaces and homes to help set the overall focus for the house. This is a snapshot of one of the mood boards for this project.

Modern made to be More

Special detailing can often be lost with the abundance of clean lines and simplicity that is generally associated with modern design. We don’t think that has to the be case, we believe that modern design can be an perfect base for highlighting exceptional details. Each space we touched, including the kitchen, butler’s pantry, laundry room, walk-in pantry, 8 bathrooms, mudroom, and wet bar all have some element of uniqueness.

Thinking inside the box

A very big part of what we are known for is our cabinetry. We strive to create more functional and interesting spaces. We achieve this by pushing the limits of basic cabinet design in every project we do.

All of the cabinetry throughout the home is our custom Town & Country Bespoke Cabinetry. We took special care to be sure that every room was a modern reflection of the possibilities that can be achieved when working with quality craftsmanship and products.

sketches of some of the custom door detailing for the project

Many of the cabinet door styles started as rough sketches like this from the design studio. These sketches became reality through the fine work of our cabinet makers as seen below.

child’s bathroom with custom floating vanity and tile with hexagon detail

Beyond the Box

In addition to the cabinetry, we were in charge of selecting and designing all of the hard surfaces for the project. This included the tile, countertops, plumbing fixtures, and bathroom accessories for this home.

Product Sponsors for the Showhouse part of the project meant that we had manufacturer restraints on the selections. Working with limited brands we were able to explore the versatility throughout the home that can be achieved when playing with finish and styles.

We wanted the individual rooms in the house to be unique, yet flow from one to the next. Our approach was to stick with a neutral color palette for all selections to create the desired continuity. Clean lines for all styling selections kept things sleek. While sourcing layers of natural and organic feeling materials offers a earthy feel throughout.

collection of finish samples for the project in the planning process

Highlights on products and fixtures will come at a later time.

When a Plan Comes Together

Although it takes time to plan and execute a project like this, it is always rewarding to look back at the process a project and how it all comes together.

We selected a few of our favorite completed spaces in the house. Below are the planning sketches and images of the final room.

master bathroom design sketch
completed master bathroom
butler’s pantry cabinetry sketch
completed butler’s pantry and dining room beyond
kitchen and breakfast nook sketch
completed kitchen and breakfast nook

We are excited to share more of the details and finished images of the house once the Aspire Showhouse Issue coming soon.

Mike Van Tassel was the photographer who took the professional images of the finishes spaces of the Showhouse.

Project Spotlight – Bingham Avenue Project Holiday Edition

This year’s Bingham Avenue Project, holiday edition project spotlight, is one that is near and dear to our hearts. This new construction project was the home of Town & Country Kitchen and Bath owner, Ginny Padula. Ginny and her husband Lou, owner of Padula Builders, designed and built this home with a heavy emphasis on family in mind.

There is no better time than the holidays to celebrate family and enjoy the comforts of home. This may be one of the reasons that Ginny pulls out all the stops when decorating her home for the season. We had the pleasure of capturing the house during one of the ‘most wonderful times of the year’ and chatting with Ginny about her holiday traditions and decorating inspiration.

We will spotlight details on this full home design project at another time. For this edition, we are going to focus on spreading the holiday cheer.

Style Profile

A welcome holiday entrance with boxwood greens and wintery décor

We started out by asking Ginny the obvious question, what is it about Christmas that makes her give full measure to decorating her home? “I have always loved holiday decorations and everything that goes with this time of year, like getting to spend extra time with my family.”

Ginny describes her holiday decorating style as being similar to her personal design style; classic and natural with hints of rustic elements. Evident in these images, the home features deep wood tones paired with warm neutrals. The traditional styling makes it feel tailored yet welcoming. When adding holiday décor she enhances these elements by layering lots of natural greens, which pair so naturally with the wood throughout the home.

Holiday Traditions

The heart of the Padula Home

Ginny is an excellent cook, this time of year the kitchen is especially busy with baking and extra people filling the home for meals. The décor is kept simple in this space to allow for ease of use during meal prep and baking. A small tree or two, some boxwood wreaths over the windows, strategic greens, and of course the highly aromatic and useful rosemary plant. She confides that her favorite holiday tradition is, being in the kitchen, baking cookies with her two sons.

Dining Room is set and ready for holiday guests .

Once the meal is made, it’s time to gather and enjoy! The Padula’s host a family dinner each year on Christmas Eve with the traditional Feast of the Seven Fishes theme. “We both grew up celebrating this way. When we got married we took over hosting to continue the custom for our family and friends and pass onto the next generation.” Ginny explains when asked how long they have have hosted these feasts.

This is a meal that requires that the entire family pitch in and takes days to prepare. Lou is the ring leader and head chef of this meal though and he starts planning for the feast weeks in advance. Everything from the homemade manicotti shells that are prepared the Sunday prior until the last salad hits the table is steeped in family tradition.

When asked if the menu varies each year, “Oh no,” Ginny explains, “everything is prepared using Lou’s grandmothers recipes and the menu is just the way she always did it.”

House of Trees

The family room is so cozy with one of the decorated Christmas trees and fireplace.

The most prominent decorative element that Ginny incorporates are trees. Large and small, real and artificial, there is a tree in each room of the home. Each tree is decorated with it’s own thoughtfully unique theme. “Last year there were 11, this year we are adding 5 or 6 more” admits Padula.

“They are all my favorite,” Ginny laughs when asked to pick, “but the family tree is probably my favorite” she decides, of the tree that the whole family decorates together. They fill the tree with ornaments either made by or collected by the group.

Even Bentley, the family’s Brittney Spaniel gets a specially decorated tree.

As in all design, an important element is to be true to your taste and comfort. When decorating for the holidays make it feel personal and purposeful. Small accents in well placed locations can make a big impact. We hope you have enjoyed this special holiday edition project spotlight and have gathered some inspiration for your own home this season.

Happy Holidays from the TCKB Design Team!

Shop The Project Spotlight Look

We rounded up a few items from the shop to help you create your own winter wonderland at home. Our shop is open in Red Bank daily, visit our Shop page for store hours. Please visit us to shop in person, email us: general@townandcountrydesignstudio.com , or call: 732-345-1441, we offer curbside pickup, local drop offs, and shipping.

Faux Seedling trees, various sizes and styles available, starting at $40.
Red Stripes Kitchen Linen Dish Cloths $11 and Giant Tin Snowflake Ornaments $12
Preserved Boxwood Wreaths with white ribbon $18

Project Spotlight – Crescent Parkway Project

Our Crescent Parkway Project was a complete kitchen renovation; including everything from the floors to the lighting in the ceiling. Town & Country was hired to design a custom kitchen and manage all aspects of the project. We brought in Eric Seebald, of Seebald Construction, to execute the project with us.

This month we thought it would be fun to not only share the finished product, but show you where we began as well. We are going to share some before and after shots and details behind this fully custom kitchen design project.

Design Considerations

Let’s start with before…

Kitchen Before

The size and overall layout of the kitchen were good but the client’s preference for more modern styling, didn’t like the dark stained – traditional styling of the kitchen.

The Crescent Parkway house is considered to be Shingle Style Architecture, a style aptly named for it’s iconic shake siding and irregular rooflines, among other features. The beauty of this architectural style is that it naturally exudes a more relaxed, informal lifestyle. The original kitchen design did not reflect the effortless luxury that the house deserved and the client’s desired.

Our goal was clear…We had to give the space new life with elevated details.

Early in the design process the client’s gravitated toward a door style, Exeter from Rutt Handcrafted Cabinetry, shown on one of the Showroom displays. The Exeter door is pretty special. It is simple at first glance but extremely unique upon closer examination. There is a real architectural element to the door and details in the collection. It’s no wonder the client, an engineer by trade, would be so taken with it.

Kitchen After

The cabinetry set the tone for the space. We selected a pale grey paint for the cabinetry surround and natural walnut for the center island.

We replaced the original rustic travertine pattern floor with a heated floor system then topped with a large format porcelain tile. The new floor, with subtle etched design and texture, offers a clean pallet for the base of the room.

Blending traditional and modern is a delicate dance in a space. To do this we used brushed stainless finishes for the hardware, plumbing, and lighting fixtures offering a utilitarian touch throughout the room. Then we incorporated more traditional elements like Calcutta marble countertops and marble tile with a decorative screen printed design backsplash.

All in the details

Let’s Talk Custom Storage

The joy of working with custom cabinetry means that the design options in a kitchen are nearly limitless, therefore optimizing every inch of storage in the room.

The Pantry Storage wasn’t ideal for the client’s needs. Working with a set amount of space meant we couldn’t necessarily increase the storage square footage. Reworking the space would mean it could be better utilized making it much more functional. By shifting the refrigerator to the center, and flanking it with narrow pantry units created a nice balance on the wall. Fully adjustable, they not only pull out but twist open, these narrow pantry units are a significantly more useful solution.

The existing corridor between the kitchen and formal dining room held a built in desk. The clients found they didn’t use it as intended and ended up always being a messy catch-all. This space with the perfect opportunity to gain substantial storage for overflow pantry items and serving pieces. Being a main pass-through in the space, we wanted it to feel special. We used a deep signature Town & Country paint color for drama. A built-in library light and a touch of the same natural walnut used in the kitchen island offer purposeful accents to the piece.

Other storage features in the room include a lift up mixer unit for easier use and hidden storage in the island with touch latch entry. The majority of the base storage feature walnut drawers boxes, many with organization inserts making sure everything has a place.

Light it up

We took careful consideration with lighting for the Crescent Parkway Project. For this kitchen, we wanted lighting to play a less glamorous, but still very important, role. We designed the lighting to highlight and accentuate all of the other elements in the room.

We removed the hanging chandelier over the island and reworked the recessed ceiling lights. All interior and under cabinets lighting was pre-specified and integrated in the cabinetry. This was an extra step in the engineering process that was well worth the effort, resulting in a beautifully seamless applications once installed.

The few decorative fixtures we chose were deliberate. Accent sconces next to the window and the aforementioned library light in the pantry/storage hutch offer light sources that showcase the details on cabinetry they adorn.

As with all of our work, we strive to create beautiful spaces that are highly functional, elegant and luxurious, yet unassuming. We believe this kitchen has all of those elements and we loved creating this space for our clients.

Want more….

Monmouth Health and Life is chose this project for the cover feature in their Oct./Nov. 2020 issue.

Project Spotlight – First Avenue Project

Our First Avenue Project Spotlight is a design collaborative we completed with local interior design firm Salt Design Co. and we just love the way it turned out.

Salt brought us in to design the kitchen layout and provide the custom cabinetry for the open concept space. It was important that the finishes and design were highly functional yet beautifully subtle to balance the planned furnishings and overall house design vision. We worked closely with the clients and Salt to ensure that their vision for a relaxed, yet chic space would flow perfectly with the custom designed cabinetry in the kitchen and bathrooms.

The Kitchen…

We used Rutt Handcrafted Cabinetry in the kitchen. The selection of a simple, yet architecturally interesting, door style was the natural choice for this open living and entertaining space on the main floor of the home. The surrounding wall cabinetry provides a clean white backdrop in the room. Finished in Benjamin Moore Chantilly Lace, the color is a continuation from the walls throughout the home. The island and accent floating shelves are a custom stained walnut wood. This finish is the perfect tone of warm driftwood and pairs beautifully with the wood flooring throughout the house.

Tucked in an alcove of the kitchen is an ultra functional pantry space, featuring the microwave drawer, two appliance garages, and ample storage. Everything in this nook is tucked behind closed doors to keep it tidy looking at all times, but also making sure everything is close at hand when needed.

Floating Shelving with integrated lighting flank the vertical ship lap range hood and black framed windows. Unlacquered Brass hardware in a sleek yet substantial style pull was selected for the kitchen.

The Galley Workstation is one of our favorite products to incorporate in our kitchen projects. These sinks are multi-functional, made for everything from prep to entertaining through cleanup. We used the 4′ size with coordinating Tap collection in the center island facing the main living space. Also, not a bad view of the ocean outside!

The Bathrooms…

Each bathroom vanity is a custom design, created specifically for this project. These one of a kind pieces boast special features including custom finishes, doors, and construction elements.

The 3rd floor master suite has ocean views. The master bathroom is ultra luxurious featuring a soaking tub, roomy shower, and his and hers dark painted cabinetry which frame the door to the sun deck.

This project is featured in the Oct./Nov. 2020 issue of Design NJ.

Click the cover image to read more about the full project.

Images for this project by Raquel Lang Worthy

Town & Country Kitchen and Bath designed and/or supplied all products specified in this article. Salt Design Co sourced/coordinated all design elements for this project that were not specified.