Ahead of the Curve

K2 Kitchen's Jenny Provost is a thought leader in design innovation. We sate down with here to find out what makes a kitchen memorable.

Provost incorporated here love of curves and arcs into a kosher kitchen's breakfast bar, chairs and ceiling design. The interplay of strong vertical lines from the zebra wood cabinetry and patterned gypsum offer a softening counterpoint.

Q. For 2017, which design trend are you in love with?
Unconventional finish pairings are the real story of 2017. When several materials, sheens, and textures are put together well, it's magic. Our Loft kitchen [cover] employs high gloss lacquer, natural veneers, stainless steel and laminates - and it works! the Calypso kitchen [page 11] has been a real success with its solid wood raised panels, back painted white glass, quarter cut walnut with high gloss finish and a beautiful custom blue satin and glaze that inspired the name.

Q. Is there a trend you could live without?
Yes, sparkly solid surface countertops. Our designs almost always incorporate solid surfaces and green counters. I'm not suggesting granite, as I prefer to leave mountains in tact - they don't grow back! But the addition of sparkling crystal to the solid surface mix is perplexing to me.

Q. Your award-winning designs range from modern to traditional. Is there a common approach?
Sure. Just like our motto 'Fearless Design for Forward Thinking People', we are willing to take risks and to back that up with engineering and research. To pull off exciting new designs takes chutzpah. K2 clients agree that it's worth it.

Q. Fearless design - what does that mean to you?
I imagine a room and see it through. I love doing the unexpected. When people say that can't be done, I enjoy taking it on for the pure sport. Fearless design takes drive, passion and skill.

Q. When do you get that 'a-ha' moment?
I get so deep in thought about my projects that I'm surprised I haven't driven off a bridge. Usually my brain is a Walmart Superstore of ideas something for everyone. Through editing comes the 'a-ha'. It's happened while driving, on an elevator, and even eating breakfast. I once designed ceilings inspired by my bowl of Cheerios!

Q. What makes a kitchen extraordinary?
Proportion, balance and luxurious finishes, but most of all, it's not just about the kitchen cabinets. Let's look up at the ceiling and give it some attention and agree that drywall is just a start on vertical wall surfaces. Textured panels, dimensional tiles and finishes make the walls a serious part of the design.

Gone are the pink flamingos and over-blown kitsch once associated with Florida in the reef-inspired kitchen featuring a custom-made mosaic backsplash. "This is bringing back the Florida dream and making it cool, modern and sexy," says Provost.

Designed to dazzle while accomplishing the practical, the 'Calypso' kitchen combines back painted glass, high gloss veneer and dark raised oak paneled cabinetry overseen by iconic George Nelson bubble fixtures. The result? A fun interplay between modern tropical and traditional aesthetics.

Circles within circles were the inspiration for this spectacularly masculine bathroom featuring tiles appropriately called 'discus'. "The real challenge was getting the faucet mounted in the center of the tile," Provost recalls.

A highly flexible and adaptable space, this kitchen is the ultimate gathering spot for parties and catered events. A portable refrigerated display case (at centre) along the back wall can be transported to other areas, as can the bar (not pictured).


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