Tell us a little bit about the project

Our renovation was a complete gut. We bought a 60's bungalow that needed everything re-done. We've done all the renovations ourselves, starting with the exterior and landscaping, and now we've moved inside starting with the kitchen. The kitchen was dated and not at all functional for us. We knew that we wanted a large kitchen island, so the countertops were a key element that drove the design of the kitchen.

When we began drafting concepts for our small bungalow, we wanted the kitchen to be the star of the show. We love to host and cook, so we wanted a space that was not only beautiful, but practical and durable as well. We went with an earthy palette of colours; white oak, natural cream, un lacquered brass, and our favourite piece - our HanStone Montauk quartz countertops. 

Nicole de Vries: Principal Designer/Creator-Maison Blonde

What is your favourite design feature?

Our walk-in pantry is one of my favourite parts of the kitchen. The space was originally a dead- end corner that was awkward and dark. By closing it off we've made it much more functional and the arch adds a lot of character to the kitchen. Inside the pantry we used vertical shiplap and floating white oak shelves for storage and display. We carried our countertops into the pantry so that there would be a workable surface inside. I'm a bit OCD and don't like to see appliances or clutter on my counters, so the pantry provides an easy space to tuck items away but still have them easily accessible. We have a little toast station set up in there and it keeps the crumbs and condiments hidden and the kitchen looking perfect for any unannounced guests.  One side of the pantry is a cabinet where the interior is all walnut and the backsplash is mirror. This is our liquor cabinet and it's a fun space to mix drinks (and again hide the mess). 

Maison Blonde

What are some design trends you are loving right now?

Creamy whites instead of stark whites; arches; quartz counters that run up the backsplash; unlacquered brass hardware and fixtures for an aged and timeless feeling; neutral colours and using texture instead of too much pattern to add interest. 

Maison Blonde 4.JPG

What made you decide on Montauk for your countertops?

We chose HanStone quartz countertops in colour Montauk for multiple reasons. We love the subtle veining patterns that mimic real marble, as well as the cloudiness and hints of ivory. For our kitchen, we chose a 3cm thickness slab and used a tree line edge profile which we feel brings a touch of elegance to a classic looking quartz countertop.

We also appreciate that HanStone Quartz is manufactured right here in Canada!

Nicole de Vries

Cabinet Paint Colour: Benjamin Moore's Natural Cream

Colour Featured: Montauk

About the Designer

Nicole de Vries is the creator and principal designer of Maison Blonde, a boutique Interior and Landscape Design Studio. After over 10 years of practicing interior design in Ottawa, together with her husband, Brad de Vries, she created a studio that specializes in thoughtful and approachable interiors. Sharing their own home renovation progress and how they transform rooms into stylish and functional spaces is part of Maison Blonde's vision: to leave their community feeling bright and inspired to take on their own projects. Make sure you follow Maison Blonde on instagram for lots of design inspiration!

Maison Blonde

Photography: Barefoot in the North

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