Historic Montreal House Meets DIY IKEA

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By Allie Weiss / Published by Dwell
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Updating standard pieces, designer Gaëtan Havart turns a misused space into a vibrant kitchen.
The first floor of this house, built in1885 and located in the McGill neighborhood of Montreal, was the perfect spot for a large kitchen and living area, which was missing from the old layout—a makeshift kitchen was previously located on the floor above. The clients, a web developer and a jewelry designer with a son, wanted a centralized space for eating and entertaining. The kitchen island contains three cabinets from IKEA, retrofitted with custom doors, as well as a dishwasher.

The first floor of this house, built in1885 and located in the McGill neighborhood of Montreal, was the perfect spot for a large kitchen and living area, which was missing from the old layout—a makeshift kitchen was previously located on the floor above. The clients, a web developer and a jewelry designer with a son, wanted a centralized space for eating and entertaining. The kitchen island contains three cabinets from IKEA, retrofitted with custom doors, as well as a dishwasher.


IKEA cabinets create storage around a Frigidaire refrigerator. The ornate molding maintains the historic character of the house.

IKEA cabinets create storage around a Frigidaire refrigerator. The ornate molding maintains the historic character of the house.


The pendant that covers the picnic-style dining table is an IKEA model, modified with a longer electrical cord.

The pendant that covers the picnic-style dining table is an IKEA model, modified with a longer electrical cord.


"We tried to keep the integrity of the [original] interior," Havart says. "We placed some cabinets around the beautiful but nonfunctional chimney." The oven is by Frigidaire.

"We tried to keep the integrity of the [original] interior," Havart says. "We placed some cabinets around the beautiful but nonfunctional chimney." The oven is by Frigidaire.


A custom glass-and-steel partition, made by Atelier Gris, separates the living room from the kitchen while maintaining visibility between the spaces.

A custom glass-and-steel partition, made by Atelier Gris, separates the living room from the kitchen while maintaining visibility between the spaces.