A Kitchen Designed With Color

The window view featuring a Franks sink and Brizo professional style faucet. Move over white kitchens, this blue painted kitchen is what a kitchen designed with color is all about. Kitchen Designed by Thyme & Place Design Sharon L Sherman kitchen designer NJ thymeandplacedesign.com

A Kitchen Designed With Color.


Central Av Remodel

Not long ago I wrote a post asking if our love affair with white kitchens was over. Certainly, white kitchens are still viable but wood and color are going strong. Without a doubt, it takes a bold client to allow a designer to create a kitchen designed with color. Given that thought, here is a project I call Central Av Kitchen. The kitchen is part of a large remodel including 3 bathrooms, a small addition, and a yoga room. As you will see, our Central Av Kitchen is just that, a kitchen designed with color. 


A kitchen Designed With Color. Thyme & Place Design


Before image of the kitchen looking in from the old porch

Before the remodel.


It doesn’t matter the style of the exterior, it is the interior that really matters. The kitchen design should be a reflection of how a family lives and works in the space. Regardless of how large or small that family is, personalized design is the key. One of the best ways to add that personality is with color. 

A kitchen designed with color: Before the remodel.

My client’s turn of the 20th century, home badly needed a new kitchen. An old porch had been partially enclosed, and the old kitchen window opened onto that enclosure, a small stretch of hallway 6 feet wide. The room had little in the way of form or function. The appliances all needed to be replaced, the lighting and flooring were in bad repair and the kitchen itself lacked culinary inspiration.


Image of the old enclosed porch


A Kitchen Designed with Color:  The Appliances.

The client requested a kitchen with modern top-of-the-line cooking appliances, a well-thought-out plan which would include an island, a desk, eating for 6, custom storage, a “cat” corner for the family pet’s food and bowls as well as a drop-dead design aesthetic. 

The old exterior wall was removed and the 6’ hallway was incorporated into the kitchen area providing space for both a table as well as a generous island with seating for three. In lieu of pantry cabinets, a pantry closet was framed to the right of the refrigerator to account for a change in ceiling height. The closet conceals the slope of the old exterior wall.


A kitchen designed with color and personality for an early 20th century home looking through the old narrow enclosed porch now part of the kitchen

The new kitchen used the old enclosed porch. Design by: Thymeandplacedesign.com



Before view of above

Before the remodel looking toward the old porch.


Additional space for the cooktop credenza was found by extending a wall concealing the basement stairs. Custom-screened marble tile covers the wall behind the induction cooktop. A pot filler faucet is an added convenience becoming very popular with clients who cook. The secondary cooking area adjacent to the cooktop has a single convection wall oven and one of my favorite appliances, a steam oven. This is the one appliance no kitchen should be without.

Cook top wall with Stainless steel hood and induction cooktop set into classic Thyme & Place Design credenza detail with custom screened marble tile splash. Thymeandplacedesign.com. Designed by Sharon L Sherman Kitchen Designer NJ

Cooktop with credenza cabinet. Thymeandplacedesign.com


Adjacent to the cooktop area is the wall oven and steam oven, a pull out pantry and the "cat corner" not shown.

Steam and wall oven with pull-out pantry storage.


An immovable corner chase became part of the design supporting a full counter-to-ceiling cabinet for glasses and cups.  Dish drawer storage is located below this cabinet, perfect when unloading the dishwasher. Once again, my favorite culinary sink (Franke) and professional-style faucet (Brizo) add to the chef’s table experience of the new kitchen. The refrigerator is a gorgeous 42” french door-styled Sub Zero.


A Kitchen Designed with Color and customized storge using dish drawers

The dish drawer is a favorite accessory of Thyme & Place Design


The window view featuring a Franks sink and Brizo professional style faucet. Move over white kitchens, this blue painted kitchen is what a kitchen designed with color is all about. Kitchen Designed by Thyme & Place Design Sharon L Sherman kitchen designer NJthymeandplacedesign.com

Window view with Franke culinary sink and Brizo faucet.


A kitchen designed with color: The Island.

Moving to the island, you will find an undercounter beverage refrigerator, additional storage, and a mixer lift to keep the stand mixer easily accessible but tucked away.  Great for casual dining and ample space for preparing meals, the island is the perfect centerpiece for this kitchen design. A traditional ship lap wood detail was turned on its end to surround the island. The contrasting color and texture of the rustic oak give relief to the smooth painted finish of the kitchen cabinets. The stain color is repeated on the pantry door as well as the family room entrance door to the kitchen.

The island in this kitchen designed with color contains an under counter beverage refrigerator and a mixer stand cabinet.

The mixer stand cabinet is another storage favorite


A desk is located near the table for both recipe research as well as homework. The spare dining chair serves as a desk chair. Open shelves are simultaneously practical and decorative.

A desk area was located by the table for homework help as well as recipe research. The chair can be used at the table when extra guest arrive for dinner.

Homework and recipe research center.

Custom storage features.

Custom storage details include a spice drawer, pull-out pantry, dish drawer, garbage/recycling cabinet, vertical tray storage, utensil, and flatware drawers, and “cat corner” which holds all things kitty related while keeping the cat dining area out of the main kitchen.

A kitchen designed with color: Some final details.

Additional details about the space. The cabinets are a traditional plain inset construction but without visible hinges. Large format “concrete” porcelain floor tiles create a simple canvas for blue-painted cabinets with a black glazed finish. Contemporized matte black hardware provides a beautiful contrast to the cabinet color. The other splash areas are covered in a simple white mottled glazed porcelain subway tile.  The “cat corner” which is not visible is realized in distressed black paint with a wood countertop to match the oak on the island.

Another key point is the ceiling height. Taller ceilings allow for taller cabinets but need a strong molding detail to balance the tall cabinet doors. To demonstrate that detail, you will notice a combination of moldings (9” high) and double-paneled doors to overcome a “tower effect” in the space.

Sharon L. Sherman, ASID, NCIDQ, CID, CKD


Sharon is the founder of Thyme and Place Design, headquartered in Wyckoff, New Jersey. She’s been practicing kitchen and bath design for the past 40 years and is a Past President of the American Society of Interior Designers – New Jersey chapter. She is a current member of the editorial board of KBB Magazine, the official magazine of the National Kitchen and Bath Association. Sharon has also received a Kitchen Bath Design News 2022 Innovator of the Year Award.

Her award-winning designs and editorial comments have been featured in Forbes, The New York Times, Design Milk, Furniture Lighting and Decor, Designers Today, Bergen NJ magazineKitchen & Bath Design News, Woman’s Day, Country Decorating, Design NJ, New Jersey Home Magazine, 201 Magazine, The Best of Bergen, Savvy Living, The Vue, The Record, The Star-Ledger,  and Aspire as well as several books.

Her blog “Tips from the Trade” appears in digital form on DesignNJ.com and KBBonline.com. She has also appeared on HGTV’s My Big Amazing Renovation and episodes of House Smarts with Lou ManfrediniSharon was a featured speaker for  *Voices From The Industry*  at the National Kitchen and Bath Association’s international convention and The International Surfaces Event and is available for further speaking engagements nationwide on all topics related to running a successful kitchen and bath design business. She is also a CEU provider for IDCEC. 



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Sharon sherman

My award-winning designs haven been featured in multiple magazines, industry publications and on television. That’s nice affirmation, to be sure.

But perhaps the greatest accolade I’ve received is the repeat engagements with so many clients, project after project, year after year.

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