When Hurricane Sandy pounded the East Coast, we decided to rehab our usual approach to our annual House of the Year. Our plan: redo a real cottage damaged by flooding-Marian Lizzi's 1,000-square-foot bungalow in Breezy Point, New York. Since the kitchen is visible from the front door, we lavished the space with personality.
1. Don't settle for a blah backsplash.
Faux-bois tiles from 14Ora Italiana create a functional focal point.
2. Ask a lot from little appliances. This 2½-foot-wide Maytag stove manages to pack in an impressive two ovens and five burners.
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3. Utilize every inch. More than mere prep surface, an island also serves as a social hub come happy hour. And Cost Plus World Market's rubberwood version helps delineate the kitchen from the rest of the room.
4. Don't be afraid to mix metals. Instead of matching the stainless steel Maytag stove, fridge, and dishwasher, we opted for contrast via matte black hardware: a Moen faucet, Schoolhouse Electric sconces, and drawer pulls by Cliffside Industries. Wayfair donated the Porcher sink; the quartz countertops are by
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5. Find delight in the details. Accessories provide an easy, low-key way to inject color-a cheery red mixer, mugs, and vintage stools pop against the ocean-inspired backdrop. We draped Atelier 688's nautical rope pendant fixture over the ceiling beams, while a table lamp (far left) offers a homey alternative to kitchen task light
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