Try This at Home
Smallbone of Devizes design consultants redo the kitchen of their London apartment
Linas Alsenas -- Interior Design, 1/1/2002 12:00:00 AM
Winston Churchill once famously declared, "We shape our buildings, and afterwards our buildings shape us." In a London apartment that Churchill inhabited in the 1930s, Keith Day and Peter Sheppard are enjoying—and in turn are perhaps being influenced by—their bright and efficient new kitchen. Partners of Sheppard Day, a specialist design company and consultant for furniture manufacturer Smallbone of Devizes, the pair recently installed the Sheppard-designed Metropolitan collection in their own 330-square-foot kitchen.
In Churchill's day, the apartment had an adjoining breakfast room with a serving hatch, but Sheppard and Day combined everything into one large kitchen. In removing walls, the designers were forced to insert a reinforced steel joist to support the floor above, thereby lowering the ceiling. The compromise enabled them, however, to install recessed lighting in the dropped ceiling, supplementing the daylight provided by three southwest-facing windows. A limestone floor with granite keystones remained, while a pale lilac hue freshened the walls.
Thus, the stage was set for the Metropolitan collection's bookshelf, food preparation island, and hand-painted blue-green cupboard-refrigerator, all maple and birch complemented by teak hinges. Day designed the oval table and pot rack for Smallbone of Devizes. The venerable prime minister never had it so good.