Arch Inspired

The arched cabinetry wall in this kitchen design helps to delineate this home's kitchen and dining spaces.

The clients, owners of a Raleigh, N.C., townhouse, wanted to open the kitchen to the living room and dining room to improve traffic flow and to create a more cohesive space. The homeowners showed remodelers David and Peggy Mackowski of Quality Design and Construction a photo of an arched opening they liked, and they wanted to use that as the design inspiration for delineating the dining room and kitchen spaces.

This before photo shows the knee wall between the living room and kitchen. This wall and the full wall between the dining room and kitchen were removed to create the open look.

The homeowners wanted a 42-inch-high counter on the dining room side, and the downdraft range on the kitchen side had venting that had to be hidden, so Dave built a knee wall to support the counter and conceal the venting. The upper cabinets are attached to only one wall, so the crew had to build sturdy bracing across the top of the structure and at the other end. They installed a wood plate under the 16-inch-high cabinet on the end of the arch wall. A post extends from this cabinet box through the knee wall. A taller cabinet sits on top of this 16-inch cabinet box. “The granite shelf sits on the knee wall, and we cut a 4-inch-by-4-inch hole under that 16-inch-high cabinet, which allowed us to physically fasten it to the knee wall below,” Dave says. “It required a lot of coordination with the granite people to make sure that all this stuff stacked and lined up.”

For additional strength, Dave Mackowski designed framing across the top of the arch that ties the taller cabinets on the outer corner to the cabinets that are attached to the wall. The QDC crew installed plywood on top of the framing and used wide rope trim to hide the 2 1/2-inch horizontal gap created by the wood members.

Finding lighting for the 20-foot-high vaulted ceiling was a challenge. All three ceiling fixtures have long chains to bring them down to a useful level. Quality Design and Construction owners Peggy and Dave Mackowski rely on the relationships they have with vendors, such as their lighting supplier, to guide clients through the selections process.

The clients needed to maximize storage in this townhouse kitchen. The island has two pedestal legs that hide 12-inch-deep storage cabinets. One panel on each leg is an operable door.

This microwave drawer doubles as a warming drawer and fits well in spaces with limited wall space, but it can be prohibitively expensive for some clients.

The team created a bench seat under a window and installed two small 12-bottle wine coolers beneath it that the client had purchased.

The clients’ grown children often visit, so they wanted as much seating as possible. The extra seating includes the bench with a table and chairs, and chairs at the island.

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