Kitchen 101 with Max Humphrey and Betsy Burnham
(Sarah Dorio/Lonny)In the September issue of Lonny, the partners at Burnham Design offered us a look at Max Humphrey's West Hollywood apartment—and we were not disappointed! Bright, cheery, and full of personality, his home looks like the perfect spot to stay in and kick back with friends. (Check out our More to Love feature online.)
The not-quite-proud renter of a non-existent Brooklyn kitchen, I was especially taken with the light, airy treatment Humphrey gave his diminutive cooking space. So we asked the design duo for their tips on how to achieve a desirable kitchen in less-than-desirable circumstances.
(Sarah Dorio/Lonny)Max: "A large kitchen wasn’t a priority for me, but keeping everything white—the cabinets, the floors, the tile—helps give the appearance of space. Small things like a bright red dish rack or colorful towels really pop. Having open shelving in the kitchen is super functional for me: this is the dinnerware and glasses I use on a regular basis.
Kitchens are often ignored as a place to hang art, but people spend so much time in there. It should really be a place for fun, special stuff. I like to lean small frames against the wall above the countertops. And it’s a galley kitchen, so the mirror-above-the-oven trick makes things look a little more open. This way I can stare at myself when I’m burning my dinner."
(Sarah Dorio/Lonny)Betsy: "Even if you’re in a rental, take your kitchen down to a blank canvas: paint cabinetry white, remove old window treatments, clean up appliances until they shine. Then, carefully start adding things: throw rugs to hide worn linoleum, new (or vintage) cabinet hardware that has as much style as it does function, a great looking wall clock, interesting serving bowls. Hang some art—hang a mirror like Max did. Just because it’s the kitchen doesn’t mean it can’t be accessorized!
The open shelving adds a touch of lightness and modernism. As much as I love patterned china and glassware, there’s really nothing more appetizing than food served on white dinnerware, or drinks in clear glass. The elements are simple, but the fact that they’re grouped together on the shelves is what makes them stand out."
Send us pictures of how you made your kitchen your own at @Lonnymag!