This tour begins in the kitchen, where the placement of cupboards and other storage introduced a challenge. Designer Stefanie Brechbuehler, intent on creating a visually pleasing workhorse of a kitchen area, rearranged the layout to accommodate updated appliances, fixtures and flush custom cabinetry. “The placement and unique design of this cabinetry transformed the way the space functions and how it opens to the dining area and living room,” she says of her work on the home, in the Prospect Heights area of Brooklyn, New York. “You can say that the family lives in the kitchen”
in a Glance
Who lives here: A household of 3, originally from India
Location: New York City
Size: 1,300 square feet
Brechbuehler along with her staff members, Robert Highsmith and Ryan Mahoney, saved space by building the majority of the tall kitchen cabinets into the underside of stairs resulting in the second floor. The cabinets act as both storage area and a railing. They also add geometric play to the dining area.
Hood: Rangecraft, custom painted in brushed brass
The rustic live-edge counter tops makes a lovely partner for the sleek, custom cabinetry. The wood’s natural edge disrupts the sleek lines and sharp angles of the whole kitchen; it is a nice surprise as you come round the island corner.
Brechbuehler’s clients challenged the designers when it came to color. “We’re known for having an extremely muted palette. But because our clients come from such a colorful culture, we couldn’t really deny colour in their property. We infused our design with some colour while staying true to our design sensibilities,” she says.
The designer integrated brass accents with a pinkish colour through the flat, most especially in the kitchen. She bought brass fittings, door handles and light switches, and splurged on a custom hood replated in brass.
“I feel the brass details actually make the design sing,” says Brechbuehler.
Faucet: Rohl, custom-made in brushed brass
The clients, who”cook like crazy,” she says, have additional baking and entertaining for their listing of weekend activities. They threw a large party here, and everybody lingered in the kitchen,” Brechbuehler says. “That is really our goal in the conclusion: to enhance the lifestyles of our clients.”
The designer gets excited when she speaks about the hidden gem of this kitchen: the pantry. Its built-in outlets and countertop make the coffee maker and other appliances fully accessible.
“Everything is plugged in, ready to use and inside of the cupboard. Our clients love the pantry’s performance,” says Brechbuehler.
Wegner wishbone chairs in white laquer and oiled walnut work well with the sharp angles of this paper clip–legged dining table.
The living room is a study in midcentury furniture. Wood materials and furniture particulars warm up the area. Sliding doors with metal handles open into an office area drenched in sunlight.
The designer continues the design theme in the office with brass cupboard handles and a custom live-edge table.
A skylight provides the differently windowless bathroom with soothing natural light.
Brechbuehler left the exposed brick walls across the duplex (seen here in the master bedroom). “They show the bones and age of the prewar flat and work well with the warmer wood furnishings and flooring,” she says.
“I love that this household trusted us enough to design a space for them, a place where their kid can grow and play and revel in her parents’ cooking. The genuine love that they have for their home gives us much joy. It is a massive part of why we do what we do,” says Brechbuehler.