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Wolf 48" Gas Range with Griddle in Forest Kitchen by Dan McFadden.

2017-2018 KDC Finalist

Forest Kitchen, an open-plan kitchen and pantry, is part of a new-construction home located in Chicago’s western suburbs. The homeowner selected a multi-function team to design and execute this project which was led by Ryan Dunham of Oakley Home Builders in Downers Grove, and included Dan McFadden and Debbie Larson of PB Kitchen Design in Geneva; Christina Samatas and Renee DiSanto of Park & Oak Interior Design in Glen Ellyn; and Michael Abraham and Joel Rafferty of Michael Abraham Architecture in Clarendon Hills.

The primary goal when designing the layout of the kitchen space was to lean into the open floor plan and create both a kitchen and pantry with a view. Non-negotiables in executing this highly functional design were maximizing natural light (yes, even in the traditionally dark pantry), incorporating ample storage in an appealing way, and ensuring the final design was a pleasant space to cook, entertain, and live. The true open-concept design limited the walls available for cabinetry and appliances. The range wall served as a necessary anchor for the kitchen, as well as a design focal point, and allowed the team to create a working pantry behind it that felt a bit moodier and different from the light and airy feel of the kitchen. The homeowner can now easily prep, cook, refrigerate, and entertain in the kitchen and then store, serve, and clean up in the pantry area.


Sub-Zero 42" Classic Side-by-Side refrigerator in Forest Kitchen by Dan McFadden.
Graceful flow between kitchen and pantry in Forest Kitchen by Dan McFadden.
Wolf 48" Gas Range with red knobs in Forest Kitchen by Dan McFadden.
Traditional Forest Kitchen by Dan McFadden Sub-Zero, Wolf, and Cove Kitchen Design Contest.
Wolf GR486G in Forest Kitchen by Dan McFadden.
Open-plan kitchen and pantry in Forest Kitchen by Dan McFadden.
Forest Kitchen by Dan McFadden Sub-Zero, Wolf, and Cove Kitchen Design Contest 2017-18.
Wolf 48" Gas Range with Griddle in Forest Kitchen by Dan McFadden.
Forest Kitchen by Dan McFadden Sub-Zero, Wolf, and Cove Kitchen Design Contest.

In selecting materials for this project, the vision was to create a home with patina and characteristics that could be found in older homes while functioning in a modern way. The island wood was selected and created in a way to feel like a repurposed antique. That old-world feel was deliberately countered with clean, more modern perimeter cabinetry. Open shelves, display cabinets, and the perfect chef’s desk create interest and work together to make this kitchen completely unique while fulfilling the needs and desires of the homeowner.

The ability to incorporate high-performance Sub-Zero and Wolf appliances, the right cabinetry choices from Quality Custom Cabinetry of New Holland, Pennsylvania, and distinctive hardware sourced from England allowed the team to execute on the desired look, leading to a timeless kitchen feel.


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