House and Grounds

House and Grounds: New kitchen brings home into the 21st century

2013-09-17T11:12:00Z 2013-09-17T12:43:20Z House and Grounds: New kitchen brings home into the 21st centuryBy Jennifer Pallay nwitimes.com
September 17, 2013 11:12 am  • 

Rays of sunshine beam through French doors in the Snapp family kitchen in Valparaiso, brightening up the newly renovated space.

After years of daydreams and months of planning and construction, Tom and Debbie Snapp finally have a kitchen with lots of light and room for entertaining.

As they prepared to send their third and youngest child off to college, the couple felt it was time to finally make the change.

“Now I have this giant kitchen and practically an empty nest. Hopefully if I keep cooking, they’ll keep coming home,” Debbie Snapp says.

The family moved to Valparaiso about nine years ago, transplants from Denver, Colo.

“In Denver the light is very different,” Snapp says. The sun is high and intense and Denver logs more sunny days per year than Honolulu, Hawaii.

Her Valparaiso kitchen always felt cut off, dingy and dark in comparison and she started to collect magazine clippings of the bright kitchens she loved.

Interior designers Robert Northington and Penelope Tanis used those clippings and the homeowners’ dreams to complete the renovation. Tanis describes the new kitchen as elegant and classic with a more European look.

Knocking down walls, removing a bank of closets and taking out a small bathroom area near the laundry room maximized the kitchen’s square footage. Replacing a single patio door with French doors finally gave them a great view of the fifth hole of Aberdeen Golf Course. The project also included refinishing the wood floors in a darker stain to contrast the new, lighter cabinets.

Chandeliers, which the Snapps brought with them from Denver, were repurposed from other areas of the house to create a focal point above the new and improved island. A subzero refrigerator and freezer, the dream appliances of Tom Snapp, were also added.

New countertops and custom made cabinets by Plain & Fancy, which feature German glass to highlight Debbie Snapp’s pottery collection, complete the look.

The couple now spends more time in the kitchen and found a new favorite spot next to the existing fireplace.

“The fireplace area has become a cozy area for conversation where the homeowners enjoy their morning coffee,” Northington says. “It’s like their safe haven where they sit and relax.”

There’s also plenty of room for company now. Debbie Snapp says she always envisioned busting out of her small, isolated cooking space and interacting with guests as she cooked.

Her new kitchen premiered just in time for her to host a Christmas party this year where she was able to do just that. The Snapps have a large extended family in the Region and they do a lot of the family entertainment, she says.

Debbie Snapp says she has two favorite parts of her new kitchen, the light from the window doors and the big island.

The homeowners and design team are now in the bidding stages of a remodel for their master bath and master bedroom.

Robert Northington Interior Design is at 3907 Calumet Ave., Ste. 207 Valparaiso, Ind. For information, call 219.465.1000.

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