Neutral Modern Kitchen – Glen Ellyn, IL

The setup

Nestled in the heart of Glen Ellyn, our clients found their dream mid-century abode, yet the kitchen remained a snapshot of the wrong design moment — the Frasurbane style of the late ’90s and early 2000s. Its palette, a relic of dial-up days and Y2K anxieties, clashed with natural light, refracting a dated haze throughout the space. The cooktop and hood, along with a towering backsplash, stifled the island’s convivial essence, while an extraneous perimeter peninsula acted more as a barricade than a bridge — segmenting the kitchen into a limited role.

Our goal: design a transitional kitchen with modern flair — a functional space for present-day living and entertaining that harmonizes with the home’s mid-century essence.

The remodel

The objectives were:

  • Redesign layout for better functionality
  • Remove multiple levels on island and move range out of island
  • Create ample seating at island
  • Bar area for entertaining

Design challenges:

  • Relocating hood ventilation
  • Existing corner sink/peninsula limited design possibilities
  • Existing two-tiered island with rangetop/oven limited design possibilities
  • Incorporating existing wine cooler
  • Improving bar area while allowing it to feel like a separate space
  • Upgrading overall kitchen aesthetic in balance with the rest of the home

The Renewed Space

Design solutions:

  • Engineer a new ventilation pathway for the hood, optimizing airflow and aesthetic integration
  • Eliminate the peninsula, moved sink to island
  • Move cooking function to perimeter, improve island seating and space functionality by eliminating upper tier
  • Move refrigerator to opposite wall, creating cold storage area with wine cooler
  • Run plumbing to create a new wet bar with different style cabinetry and top
  • New design with fresh, modern neutral colors and a few Bauhaus-ish elements (boxy non-ornate cabinets and hood, concrete-looking porcelain backsplash) harmonizes nicely with the mid-century home

Embracing both the home’s mid-century charm and the needs of contemporary living, this kitchen now flourishes as a harmonious space where design and functionality converge gracefully.

Special thanks to Senior Designer Bailey LaSchiava who joined this team project soon after she returned to our firm and managed the project to completion.

Size of Space:

24′ x 20′


Island, Cooktop Wall

  • Brand: Grabill
  • Material: Maple
  • Color: Dark green
  • Door style: Madison Square

Hood, Fridge/Pantry, Island Back 

  • Brand: Grabill
  • Material: Rift-cut white oak
  • Color: Light stain
  • Door style: Madison Square

Wet Bar

  • Brand: Grabill
  • Material: Nature Plus
  • Color: Madrid
  • Door style: Nature Plus full flush


  • Brand: Raphael Stone
  • Type: Quartz
  • Color: Organic white


  • Brand: Euro Marble
  • Type: Quartz
  • Color: Pearl grey


  • Wolf 36” Dual fuel range
  • Sub-Zero built-in 30″ refrigerator w/ 2 freezer drawers
  • Sharp microwave drawer
Special Features:
  • Large Island with seating for 5
  • Beautiful quartzite for bar countertop
  • Built-in pantry replicates a refrigerator

Before / After Photos

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