A Colorful Yet Calming Kitchen

Hits of beachy blues bring a relaxing but cheerful vibe to this contemporary Cape Cod kitchen from HGTV Magazine.

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After more than two decades of renting summer homes up and down the Eastern seaboard, Katie and Jeff Alitz were itching for a coastal escape of their own — one that could accommodate lobster boils, pizza night and big holiday gatherings. So when they found a lot on Cape Cod with a water view, they jumped at the chance to build a vacation home for their family of four.

The couple was especially keen on having a made-to-order kitchen that checked off all their design wants: ample counter space, a separate pantry and a color palette reminiscent of the nearby beach. “We’re lucky enough that we can see the ocean from our house, and we used that as inspiration for the kitchen’s colors,” says Katie. With the help of Fletcher Cameron Kitchens in New Haven, CT, she and Jeff conceived an open space featuring wood-planked walls, shiplap, blond wood and watery shades of blue. After years of random rental kitchens, Katie is reveling in her new space. Her favorite feature: the peninsula that’s long enough to seat the whole family at once — perfect for lazy weekend meals. “We use every inch of surface area in this kitchen,” Katie says. “Nothing is left untouched.”


Katie regularly sweeps and mops the natural-toned maple floors that run through the kitchen and the adjacent eating area. A matte polyurethane finish on the 5-inch-wide boards protects the wood and gives it a low sheen that matches the finish on the kitchen cabinets.


A giant reclaimed oak table — 3 feet by 8 feet — and a pine bench, both from Restoration Hardware, can squeeze up to 10 for dinner. The rainbow-hued polyester outdoor rug from Company C brings the only hits of color, besides blue, to the space. The Eames chairs are from Design Within Reach.


“I always thought of laminate as a first step before you spent money on wood,” Katie says. But these Abet Laminati laminate cabinet fronts changed her mind. “They’re clean and minimal. I know I’ll still love them in 10 years,” she says. The light wood tone suits the kitchen’s color scheme.


A mix of small and large fixtures works well in an open space like this. Glass pendants by Terzani above the peninsula and the center island mimic the look of water droplets — perfect for a coastal kitchen — and cast a soft glow. The 40-inch-wide rectangular pendant above the table is from Axo Light. 


The peninsula features an ocean blue laminate base and the same dark gray quartz countertops (Raven by Caesarstone) used throughout the kitchen. The side facing the kitchen’s interior includes a whopping 12 drawers. “We haven’t even filled them all yet,” Katie says. “It’s a problem I’m happy to have.”


Katie loves the see-through slats on this custom maple sliding barn door and how it stands out against the blue shiplap wall (Newburyport Blue by Benjamin Moore). “I wanted to keep the kitchen as airy as possible, which meant not many upper cabinets. So a good-size pantry was important,” she says. The stainless steel pulls on the peninsula drawers are by Häfele.

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