Designer Charlotte Lucas was tasked with transforming a Myers Park home addition, designed by Frank Smith and built by Phil Goodwin, into a spacious kitchen worthy of entertaining. “Our design goal was to cohesively merge the new with the old,” she says.

DITCHED TRADITION Rather than using a tile backsplash, Lucas opted for plaster. “Plaster provides a lot of depth,” she says. “There’s beautiful movement in the plaster material that we loved for this space that we wouldn't have gotten with tile.”

ADDED METAL ACCENTS To complement the burgundy Lacanche range with brass details, Lucas incorporated the same metal accent in the island pendant by O’Lampia and sconces by The Urban Electric Co.

TIED IT TOGETHER To keep the look cohesive and clean, Lucas used the same revered white marble from the kitchen island countertop for the recessed shelves.


KITCHEN SPLURGE “A Lacanche range. They come in so many fun colors and have beautiful brass details, making what could be an eyesore a beautiful design feature.”

BEST DECORATING TIP  “Make the kitchen feel like a room. Add art and warmth in little details, so it's a space you enjoy spending time in, not one that's simply to create meals, make a mess, and leave. I'm in the camp that every room in the house should be used to its full capacity and filled with special things you love.”

BEST SOURCE FOR KITCHEN INSPIRATION “European kitchens are my favorite. I also frequently turn to the pages of Architectural Digest for kitchen inspiration.”

KITCHEN DO “Have a mix of materials and a cabinet designer to help optimize functionality!”

KITCHEN DON’T “Don't think about shortterm trends. Design for longevity, not current fads.”

A family in Cotswold wanted to transform their one-time dining room into a stylish, family-friendly kitchen. So they enlisted designer Jennifer Felts of Habitude Interiors and architect Jeff Sherer to make the transition a success.

WHAT SHE DID REWORKED THE APPLIANCES The stove is traditionally situated in front of a tile backsplash, but Felts placed it beneath the oversized window facing the backyard. “With a sleek range hood, it works and can be a focal point.”

MIXED METALS Felts combined matte black by adding plumbing fixtures with champagne bronze on the cabinetry hardware for accents. “The bronze pops against the cabinetry, and the black keeps the space feeling more modern, like the rest of the house.”

WENT BIG ON LIGHTING Felts added the oversized pendants by Visual Comfort for a dramatic effect. “They are sleek, so they don’t detract from the view, but still have a big impact from a design perspective.”


KITCHEN SPLURGE “If you’re a big cook, splurging on appliances can be worth it. Otherwise, lighting. It’s my favorite splurge in most spaces, and it can give your room the wow factor it needs.”

BEST DECORATING TIP  “Opt for fewer larger pendants rather than small lighting for a more dramatic effect.”

BEST SOURCE FOR KITCHEN INSPIRATION “Instagram feed @concept_build is an Australian custom-home builder that I think does amazing kitchens if you love a more modern aesthetic. Their kitchens are minimal but with unexpected details that elevate the space.”

KITCHEN DO “Built-in coffee stations and appliance garages are two of the must-haves for our clients.”

KITCHEN DON’T “From a design perspective, a two-height island. Keep the island at counter height to allow the space to feel more open.”


Kitchen and bath designer Caren Bistany is no stranger to whole-home renovations, and this South Charlotte home was no exception. Bistany was enlisted to gut and renovate the kitchen while maximizing the space's lake views.

WHAT SHE DID GAVE IT A FACELIFT The kitchen renovation was part of a larger whole-home renovation, so Bistany’s finishes needed to mesh with the more modern, transitional aesthetic. She achieved this with white tile by Walker Zanger, sleek lighting by Visual Comfort, and vein-cut natural quartzite.

CUSTOMIZED IT Bistany customized nearly everything in the kitchen, including the steel hood above the range. Its modern industrial look ties in with custom steel cabinetry doors, cabinetry hardware, and Bird Decorative Hardware & Bath plumbing.

ADDED WARMTH Because the kitchen is heavy on its custom steel accents, Bistany warmed the space up with the addition of a rift-oak waterfall top on the bar.


“Cabinet hardware. It’s like jewelry for the kitchen.”

BEST DECORATING TIP  “The kitchen is an integral part of the architecture of the home and a room you live in. Take the time to plan your kitchen properly and thoughtfully with a professional.”

BEST SOURCE FOR KITCHEN INSPIRATION “Architectural Digest Pro’s weekly emails have featured projects that I love to look at for inspiration.”

KITCHEN DO “Mix materials and textures to add interest. I love to mix wood, stone, metal, and glass for a unique look.”

KITCHEN DON’T “Selecting a material or product because everyone is using it. Keep your kitchen unique to you and your home.”