Outdated fixtures, materials, and finishes defined the kitchen of a home sitting on the edge of Encino, a departure from the rest of its contemporary interiors, and Los Angeles designer Eddie Mickenberg was tasked with rectifying this discrepancy. His solution? Taking the moody route. “Personally, I love using high contrast in all of my work, pushing darker tones and different shades of black as the common thread,” says Mickenberg, “which is the opposite of the ‘light, bright, and airy’ look I see is trending, especially in California.” His starting point for the room, he adds, was Behr’s deep black-hued Carbon paint, because “everything around it felt more elevated and beautiful,” including black and brass lighting above the island and slabs of veined Florida Wave quartzite on the backsplash and countertops.
When a young family purchased their 1920s Colonial in Providence, Rhode Island, the kitchen was trapped in the ’80s, complete with laminate countertops bubbling at the edges. Moore House Design pushed it into the future by embracing an efficient layout and filling the room with such modern, original touches as a custom island with legs flaunting a pop of Italian marble, a bespoke aged brass shelf installed over new casement windows, and white brick veneer on the walls heightened by moody, almost-black, sooty navy cabinetry and counters. “While many believe a white and blue/black kitchen can come across as cool, it’s all in the undertones,” explains Blair Moore, creative director for the Warren, Rhode Island–based practice. “We introduced deep chocolate in the island and flooring to warm the space and paired it with a rich blue/black soapstone, which ages perfectly.”