Suburban Newark Family’s Home Accommodates an Active Lifestyle
According to plan: when improving their Newark home, the Andersons take their time and do it right.
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Mastering the Plan
A master plan for your home is just like a master plan for your life or your career. Think about how long you will stay in your home. Are you planning for a growing family or an empty nest? Do you want to focus on the public spaces of your home or is a private sanctuary your priority?
For the Andersons, the emphasis is on family and friends, so gathering spaces went to the top of their master plan. In order to achieve that goal, the couple was willing to move a master suite toward the end of the list.
“I love to cook, and we host family dinners for the holidays, usually about 18 people,” Kathy Anderson says.
At first, the couple considered bumping out the back of the house to enlarge the kitchen, which was their most recent project. Bartron came up with a design that makes better use of the existing space, saving the family the additional expense and inconvenience of taking down exterior walls.
The designer replaced an awkwardly positioned island with a peninsula that accommodates informal dining. The central work area includes a six-burner, commercial-style gas range, a pair of wall ovens, the sink and a large-capacity refrigerator.
Other elements—a coffee station, a pantry for snacks and a small, built-in buffet with an under-counter beverage fridge—are stationed just outside the work area.
“If someone wants a glass of wine, they don’t have to come into the kitchen where Kathy is cooking to get it,” Gary Anderson says.
As practical as it is, the kitchen is also glamorous, replete with custom touches. Glossy glass tiles are set vertically on the backsplash rather than horizontally. Electrical outlets are installed on the underside of the upper cabinets so as not to break up the expanse of tile. Cupboard pulls are mounted on the bottom of the door for a one-of-a-kind look. The granite counter next to the sink is routed to create a drainboard for glassware.
The designer also was responsible for researching products and materials in a marketplace teeming with choices.
“Biff took the guess work out of our projects,” Kathy Anderson says. “He would present us with several options, then we would choose.”
Bartron also came up with novel ways to maximize space. A shallow dead space in a kitchen wall was outfitted with shelves and electrical outlets to create a charging station for electronics and mobile devices. A framed picture mounted on hinges opens to access the station. The under-counter beverage fridge is recessed into the wall.