Reclaimed Comfort

Julie Abner Interiors transforms an outdated kitchen into a family of five's dream gathering space. 

By Maya Brenningmeyer


Photography by Alise O'Brien


Faced with an inconvenient layout, unused appliances and a lack of storage, a family of five turned to Julie Abner Interiors to help reimagine their outdated kitchen. With three young children, it was important to the couple to have an updated, livable space that exudes warmth and character.

The key elements of the renovation included redesigning the layout to create an open, airy space and improving storage options throughout the kitchen. A spacious kitchen island with an updated leg style, new counter stools and new quartzite and soapstone countertops helped transform the space. “In a kitchen for a family of five, storage is key!” says Julie Abner, owner of Julie Abner Interiors. For this busy family, a prep sink/faucet was installed to help with food prep, and unused space became a functional butler’s pantry to provide additional storage.

“The clients were very easygoing and trusted me throughout the selection process,” says Julie. “Together, we hand-selected the soapstone and quartzite stone slabs for the countertops and carefully chose the plumbing fixtures together so they matched their style and needs for the kitchen.” A notable addition is the use of reclaimed wood - a special request from the homeowners. Reclaimed wood timber was added into the new vent hood, the columns attached to the raised bar countertop and on the fireplace accent wall in the adjoined hearth room. New Walker Zanger backsplash added texture to the space and tied the kitchen and butler’s pantry together.

Elements like dark gray cabinetry and patterned performance fabrics on the counter stools added thoughtful touches to the family-friendly kitchen. “There were several features (the icemaker, open shelves, glass-front cabinets) which were simply not functional for their family,” says Julie. Streamlining the kitchen to suit their needs provided convenience when cooking and reached the clients’ goals of warming up the space while maintaining its character. “I love helping my clients take their vision for the space to the next level and seeing the entire design process through from start to finish!”