Rita Varriale loved the view outside the kitchen in her Old Brookville home ... It was the view of the kitchen that she didn't like.
Varriale and her orthopedic surgeron husband, Leo Varriale, both 62, had a kitchen that was dark and closed off. And, while the couple loves company, the kitchen's odd pass-through discouraged, rather than encouraged, entertaining.
"With our old cabinets, you had to duck down to see people in the living room," says Varriale, a real estate broker who turned to Jeani Ziering of Ziering Interiors of Rockville Centre and Manhattan for help.
"I wanted to open up the kitchen and give it a warm, homey feeling with a mix of textures," Ziering explains.
The kitchen, which has a view of the fields of a neighboring farm, added to the Tuscan feel of the house.
"Now, when we're sitting in the kitchen and look out the window, it is as if we are in Tuscany," Varriale says. The same view is available from the adjoining dining room, which Ziering opened up to allow access between the two rooms.
In addition, rather than replacing the window with a larger one, Ziering used the visual technique of starting the window treatment well above the window to give the appearance of a more expansive opening.
Here's how the two collaborated to give Varriale a Tuscan feel on Long Island.
A. TERRA COTTA FLOOR, existing
This sets the stage for the entire makeover
B. CABINETS, $30,000
The light cabinets add to the airy, open feel of the kitchen. From Lakeville Kitchen & Bath, Lindenhurst
C. CABINET HARDWARE, $650
From Portico Tile & Bath Fixtures, Huntington
D. GRANITE COUNTERS, $7,000
The pass-through counter was so large that the granite had seams. Ziering added the raised area on both ends to hide the seams and give Varriale a display area to add interest to the counter. From Portico Tile & Bath Fixtures
E. TILE BACKSPLASH, $2,000
Includes backsplash, medallions and mosaic. From Country Floors, Manhattan
F. APPLIANCES, $26,000
Includes Sub-Zero wine cooler, Sub-Zero side-by-side refrigerator, Wolf six-burner gas stovetop and range, Miele dishwasher and Wolf in-drawer microwave, all from P.C. Richard & Son, Plainview
G. ISLAND, included
This extra space is ideal for entertaining
H. STOOLS, $500 (for two)
I. RECOVER CHAIRS, $800
Ziering chose to update the backs of the chairs with cloth to add extra texture to the room. Fabric and materials ($500) from Pindler & Pindler, Manhattan; fabrication ($300) by designer's workroom
J. LIGHT FIXTURE, $700
From Lighting Gallery, Huntington Station
K. ISLAND LIGHT FIXTURE, $450
From Lighting Gallery
L. WINDOW TREATMENT, $1,900 (for three)
This is where Ziering raised the window treatment for visual effect. Fabric ($1,100) from Pindler & Pindler; fabrication ($800) by designer's workroom
M. PAINT, included
Benjamin Moore's Putnam Ivory; provided and applied by contractor
N. PLUMBING SUPPLIES, $2,500
Includes pot filler (right), faucets, sink, all from Blackman plumbing supply, Mineola; installed by contractor
TOTAL $109,000 (Includes $1,500 fee from Ziering; includes $35,000 fee to designer-only contractor)