Designer Kate Marker and her husband spent the greater part of 2020 bringing back the authentic vintage grandeur to their Barrington Hills residence. It’s a sprawling century-old home on 10 acres of land, with westward views, steel windows, and plenty of original flooring. Of course, as with many old homes, the kitchen needed to be entirely reimagined.
“It was a 1960s special,” Marker laughs. “Total gut job with really dark dated cabinets, ornate pendants and fussy ceiling fan, a large L-shaped island, and dark floors.” Wanting to depart from the ubiquitous white cabinetry color, the designer opted to channel something a bit more dramatic. “Green is my favorite color and I thought it would be a wonderful opportunity to introduce a deep green in the cabinetry,” she says, naming Dark Olive by Benjamin Moore as the color. “I also had been working on my own custom designs – actually drawings that my daughters created – for a tile backsplash which came to fruition in a muted terracotta look that feels so personal and special!” The tile, hand-glazed by the Fine Line and Tabarka, features a soft, small-scale motif comprised of muted green and dusty pink, and looks as though it could be original to the home.
Other finishes, such as unlacquered brass hardware, sink faucets, and a pot filler also offer vintage charm, while modern conveniences are here in spades with the artisan-crafted Farmhouse 3018 NativeStone Sink in Pearl as well as the Malibu NativeStone Bar Sink in Pearl, both from Native Trails. (The latter of which is hidden in a very cool coffee bar.)
Though the entire design is beautiful, it’s the wood floors that Marker feels best define the space. “They are made of old reclaimed wood in a herringbone pattern that complements the long history of the home (built in 1926, so nearly 100 years old), and provide a grounded warmth to the space that we gather in so much of each day.”