HOME TOUR: Barrington

A Colonial kitchen gets reimagined with an eye on entertaining and plenty of coastal blues


So much time is spent in the kitchen. This statement rings true whether it’s a tiny galley style or an expansive space that looks like something from a Nancy Meyers movie. It’s where food is prepped and, for most homes in Little Rhody, the entrance, as we use the side or back door rather than the front. After 17 years, the homeowners of a then-new construction Colonial in Barrington were ready for some updates to the hub of their home.

“We wanted an open floor plan, great for entertaining family and friends, and cooking,” said the homeowner. “We also like a coastal-contemporary look because it’s calming.” With that in mind, Michelle Parenteau of Michelle Lee Designs, an interior designer based in Johnston known for bringing panache to both residential and commercial spaces, was called in. What she prescribed was a soft serene color scheme with a few unexpected touches to keep things lively, along with nods to both coastal and farmcoast styles.

“Lighting was very important,” says Parenteau, who kept the kitchen window bare, and installed both recessed and pendant lighting. A standout feature is a trio of lamps over the island, with an unexpected choice of teal with a weathered gold and ivory finish. Another bold selection was turning the kitchen island into a focal point. “I chose a navy blue island that would coordinate with the pale blue tiny hexagon backsplash tile. The homeowners wanted to create a coastal farmhouse feel, so I chose the new Emerald Designer Color palette from Sherwin Williams,” Parenteau shares.

White cabinetry provides the foil for elements that imbue a seaside vibe such as wide plank wooden flooring in a bleached sandy tone and shimmering tile. Wooden bar stools with rattan seats connect with various fixtures throughout the space including the twisted decorative roping of the pendant lamp about the sink.

With their new kitchen ready for entertaining – including the addition of a wide refrigerator – the homeowners are delighted with their remodeled space. “It’s the room in the house that makes us most happy.”


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