Home 7: 11813 Ridgemount Ave. W., Minnetonka, MN 55305
ASID Designer Kitchen Tour April 22 – 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and April 23 – noon to 5 p.m.
Designed by Gigi DiGiacomo • DiGiacomo Homes, Inc.
It all began with capitalizing on the view of a beautiful wetland. The Minnetonka homeowners loved watching wildlife right outside their house, but couldn’t appreciate the view with their original kitchen layout (concealed by cabinetry). They hired designer Gigi DiGiacomo of DiGiacomo Homes to help them maximize their space and modernize their kitchen. First off, the cabinetry on the south wall of the kitchen had to go. “We suggested replacing that with a bank of large windows to overlook the wetland,” Gigi says. Once this was done, the new adjoining dining/family area benefited from the increase in sun and the wetland views. The updated space (pictured) became affectionately referred to as the “marsh room,” a peaceful place to dine or relax.
One of the biggest challenges was working within tight space constraints. This was overcome through a creative design, utilizing every inch of existing square footage, and a more functional layout. In order to add working space, Gigi used a series of curved cabinets and bisecting island counters. The redesign not only added space, but created visual interest and improved the traffic flow for a family of cooks.
The homeowners wanted to keep the finishes bright (moving away from the dark colors of their original kitchen). They were adamant about “anything but white” for the color palette—particularly the countertops. Gigi explains, “With this in mind, we struck a nice balance of light gray for the cabinet enamel, chocolate for the counters, and blown glass tile for the backsplash, incorporating these and other colors from the homeowners’ art.” Butcher block was used on one of the center islands and again to frame cabinet blocks, tying in with the existing natural maple trim. The new space is fresh, bright, modern, and awash in natural sunlight.
Q&A with designer Gigi DiGiacomo:
Where do you typically find design inspiration?
I look all over but tend to find my greatest source of inspiration in nature. I love the texture and organic, subtle shifts in tint, shade and tone that are evident in the natural landscape. I often find myself taking photos of natural details—bark, dry grasses, fungi, tree shadows—and bringing these back to my office for a bit of color study. Nature always knows best how to create a rich, soothing palette!
How do you guide homeowners to help find their own design style when they aren’t really sure what their style is?
I usually look at their art. Art is very personal and reflects a range of styles, from modernist to realist, and can say a lot about colors that a client might prefer. For this project (Home #7 on the ASID Designer Kitchen Tour), we took inspiration from the homeowners’ collection of abstract oil paintings that were infused with rich blues, chocolates, and grays.
For more information about this project on the ASID Designer Kitchen Tour, visit http://midwesthome.com/events/2017-asid-designer-kitchen-tour/tour-kitchens/digiacomo-homes-inc-11813/. For more information about Digiacomo Homes, visit http://www.designbuildmn.com/. Tickets to the ASID Designer Kitchen Tour April 22 and 23 can be purchased for $15 in advance or $20 at the door ($10 for single home visits). Purchase tickets online here: midwesthome.com/events/2017-asid-designer-kitchen-tour/kitchen-tour-tickets/.
By Chrissy Sarinske