Fraher Architects expanded a flat in northwest London to include a kitchen.
If you’ve ever wondered what chefs want out of their own kitchens, Fraher Architects’ latest project offers one answer: simplicity. Through an extension to an existing flat, they gave their client, who runs several fast-paced restaurants, a no-fuss cooking space where she could relax and socialize in the off hours with friends.
“The client wanted an interior space where you could read the materiality of the building elements like understanding the ingredients in a recipe,” principal architect Elizabeth Webster explains. The extension features distinctly textured materials: an exposed timber ceiling, painted brick walls, and polished concrete floors. Warm lighting by Brinklicht unifies the space.
The slightly below-ground kitchen sits inside a boxy extension, clad in recycled timber and stained kettle black. A wildflower garden grows on its pitched roof.
A folding screen separates a new sitting area, just off the kitchen, from the rest of the house.
The architecture firm’s in-house joinery company, Fraher and Co, incorporated storage spaces throughout the home. Beneath the kitchen bar, a birch plywood bookcase holds the chef’s collection of cookbooks and music. Shelves flanking the oven also store and showcase dishes, glasses, and wine bottles.
A sturdy concrete countertop curves around the entire length of the kitchen, finished in a texture Webster describes as “bug splattered.” Despite the unappetizing name, it works well for rolling out dough. Its circular motif reappears in the custom cabinets’ finger pulls, which also help ventilate the cupboards. The fixtures are from Kubus and the appliances are from Miele.
The kitchen enjoys plenty of natural light, thanks to a narrow glass window above the kitchen sink that effectively continues onto the roof as a skylight.
The renovation added a touch of modernity to the building without overwhelming it. The yard remains a work in progress, as the client is still working through ideas for a kitchen garden.