The 2012 Ultimate Up North Kitchen Tour in Northern Michigan

Northern Michigan Events: Saturday, October 13, 2012 from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. is the Ultimate Up North Kitchen Tour! Fourteen homeowners will open their kitchens to the public to admire the work of Northern Michigan's talented designers, architects and contractors. Whether looking for remodeling ideas or a way to spend a Northern Michigan fall day, the Ultimate Up North Kitchen Tour is for you!

Read on for a sneak preview of the fourteen fabulous kitchens on this year’s tour. Use this map and guide to help you plan a spectacular day touring across the Northern Michigan landscape during the height of fall color.

Ticket Information: Tickets are $10 in advance, $15 the day of. Three ways to purchase: MyNorth.com/tickets, from any of the kitchen designers listed in this guide, or at these fine locations:

Traverse City

Mary’s Kitchen Port, 231.941.0525

Max’s Appliances, 231.947.6830

Glen Arbor

The Yarn Shop, 231.334.3805

Petoskey

Capital Granite, 231.347.1542

Northwest Michigan Habitat for Humanity ReStore, 231.348.6926

Cadillac

Wexford County Habitat for Humanity ReStore, 231.775.8661

Worldly Flavors

# 1 Karabacz

7267 Pheasant Run Drive, Gaylord

Kimberly Oliver, Wittock Kitchen & Bath, 989.732.1690, wittock.com
Appliances: GE Profile
Caninetry: Showplace Plumbing: Kohler

Driving Directions: From Otsego Ave./I-75 Business Route. At Exit 279 head south on I-75-BR/Old 27 5.05 miles, turn left on Mancelona Rd. (which becomes Old State Rd.) 1.1 mile. Turn left on Pheasant Run (the back entrance to Michawyé Club). Continue .05 mile, turn right on Pheasant Run Dr. go 0.7 mile. House is on the right.  

A world traveler and empty nester, Nancy Karabacz, decided it was time to tailor her kitchen to reflect her own style and show off her globetrotting adventures. From new bamboo floors that remind her of her trip through Asia to the innovative, sleek, solid-glass backsplash that was inspired by her bicycling trip through the Netherlands, Karabacz brought home flavors from all over the world to Northern Michigan.

Her renovation adventure began by working with designer Kimberly Oliver to take down her outdated kitchen to the studs. Job 1 was opening up the kitchen to reflect Nancy’s welcoming personality—a goal accomplished by lowering the two-tiered bar that had previously barricaded guests from the kitchen fun, adding a picture window and widening the kitchen entrance.

Nancy donated the old oak cabinetry to a charitable organization, and then worked with Kimberly to find a new, more fitting look. “I wanted the space to talk of the warmth that exudes from this adventurous woman but speak with a contemporary flair,” says Kimberly. “We chose sleek, clean-lined, natural maple cabinets and paired them with a chocolate quartz countertop for a rich, warm contrast. The subtle, serene, blue-green hue reflected from the glass backsplash instantly calms the spirit while bringing a fresh, modern style throughout the kitchen.”

Kimberly went on to finesse a generous, uninterrupted peninsula—tailor-made for multiple cooks and for entertaining—by placing the sink in a corner, tucked under a bridge of glass-fronted cabinets that frame, but don’t block, the glass backsplash. Both Kim and Nancy credit installer Nick Roude (NR Craftsman) with helping to make this renovation both smooth and lovely.

Other treats to check out: a Cambria countertop wrap-leg at the entrance to the kitchen; Mockett pull-up countertop electrical outlet; all LED lighting; outlet/switch covers that match the solid glass backsplash; pullout spice rack beside the range; mixer lift cabinet beside the sink; up-lift cabinets for full access storage; pullout trash/recycle bins in the peninsula.

Sleek Transitions

# 2 Marconnit

6974 Partridge Place, Michaywe, Gaylord

Heather Guss, Advance Electric, Gaylord 989.732.2485, advanceelectric.com
Cabinetry: Mouser, Advance
Installer: Nick Roude
Appliances: GE, Bosch Appliances: Delta, Blanco

Driving Directions: Old State Rd./Pheasant Run (see Karabacz Residence)—back entrance to Michaywé. Turn left onto Pheasant Run, go .05 mile, turn right on Pheasant Run Drive (turns into Pheasant Run). Take the first right onto Partridge Place. House is on the left.

Lynn Marconnit’s favorite color is blue, and she favors contemporary design—but her kitchen was outdated, rustic and anchored in green. Enter designer Heather Guss, who tastefully threaded blue throughout this renovation while successfully bridging the rustic feeling of the rest of the home. The crux of the redo is knotty alder cabinetry topped with blue pearl granite. The sleek stainless backsplash is broken up by a pearl granite–and-glass waterfall backsplash (created by laying the glass tiles vertically instead of horizontally) behind the stove. Stainless appliances and hardware on all but the glass-fronted cabinet (blue gemstone pulls there!) play off the shiny backsplash. A two-compartment oven (saves space and energy in comparison to a double-oven), a techy Delta touch faucet and a big, durable Silgranite sink round out this remodel that is illuminated by monorail lighting that features, yes, blue glass shades.

Classic Cottage

# 3 Molnar

3605 Fisher Trail, Indian River

Jethany Lee, CKD, Preston Feather Kitchen & Bath, Harbor Springs, 231.348.1316, prestonfeather.com
Builder: Jim Rutledge Builders, Inc.
Home Designer: CB Drafting & Designer
Cabinetry: Medallion, Preston Feather Appliances: Trevarrow, Witbecks

Driving Directions: From I-75 North, Exit 310 toward Petoskey/Rogers City. Turn left on M-68 go .3 mile, turn left/south at Straits Hwy./M-68W. Go .9 mile, turn right/west at M-68W and go 2.6 miles; turn right toward Fisher Trail, go .1 mile, turn left onto Fisher Trail. House is on the right.  

Father and daughter team (builder) Jim Rutledge and (designer) Jethany Lee teamed up to give the Molnar family the classic cottage look they dreamed of in their new build on Burt Lake. White cabinetry and iridescent subway tiles create a fresh-as-a-summer-morning vibe, while a country home sensibility is conjured via distressed black island base, Vermont white granite countertops, a farmhouse sink, oak beams and a reclaimed oak floor.

Look closely and you’ll find details that lend this kitchen an authentically period feel including deep, bracketed window trim, a paneled refrigerator and matching arched cutouts in two facing walls that deliver an unexpected view of the lake. But don’t be fooled: the double ovens, Wolf range and a built-in computer ground this beautiful kitchen squarely in the 21st century. The family’s favorite thing about this kitchen, though, is the multiple places to work, including a prep sink. “When we have lots of guests, those aspects make it easy for my mother, sister and me to get meals out quickly without feeling we’re in each other's space,” says Christina Molnar Metrose. “Jethany did a wonderful job in her design and layout to make the kitchen functional for just two people or for large groups.”

The New Traditional

# 4 Boback

4184 Turfway Trail, Birchwood Farms Golf and Country Club, Harbor Springs

Jill Brecheisen, Kitchens by Design, Petoskey 231.347.8400, kitchensbydesignpetoskey.com
Cabinetry:  Marquis, Talora
Installer: Frost Builders
Fabricator: TJ Marble
Plumbing: Kohler
Backsplash: Capital Floor Coverings
Appliances: Sub-Zero, Wolf, GE, Asko

Driving Directions: From M-119 and U.S. 31. Go 6.3 miles to Hoyt St., turn right .2 mile. Turn left on E. Lake St. go .8 mile, turn right on State St. go 2 miles, turn left on Middle Rd. and go 1.6 miles, turn right on Hughston Rd., go .1 mile, take first left on Meadowood Ct., go .2 mile, turn right on Turfway Trail, go .1 mile. House is on the left.

Note: From Boback to Adelaine take first left on Meadowood Ct., go .2 mile, turn right on Hugh- ston Rd., go .1 mile, turn left on Middle Rd. .2 mile. Turn right on Hughston Rd. go 2 miles. House is on the right.

“My clients have a keen eye when it comes to personalizing a clean palette,” says designer Jill Brecheisen of homeowners Jeff and Jackie Boback. Jill helped them accomplish the welcoming traditional look they were looking for by delineating this open, efficient kitchen with a rich cherry island/bar anchored on each side with handsome carved cherry sentinel pillars. The island countertop is Delicatus granite countertop—the granite’s vanilla background was selected to play off the kitchen’s cream-painted perimeter cabinets, while its warm-toned veining harmonizes with the cherry island base. A custom-painted hood flanked by glass-hutch cabinetry creates a sophisticated focal point. Staggered cabinet heights, custom crown molding and interior cabinet lighting hold the interest.

Lots of style, but also plenty of function: soft-close cushion drawer glides, soft-close cushion doors, a double trash-cabinet, utensil drawers, cutlery divider and pots and pans drawers. High-end appliances round out this kitchen that’s as suited to heavy duty cooking as it is to a wine and cheese party.

Lightened Up

# 5 Adelaine

7072 Hughston Road, Harbor Springs

Brooke Anderson, Preston Feather, 231.439.5823 Installer: Adelaine Construction
Appliances: GE Chuck' TV & Appliance
Flooring:Petoskey Flooring
Plumbing:Grohe, Ferguson Enterprise

Driving Directions: From M-119 and Hoyt St. Go right on Hoyt St. .2 mile, turn left on E. Lake St. go .8 mile, turn right on State St. go .5mile. Turn left on Hughston Rd. go 2.1 miles. House is on the left.  

Kitchen Designer Brooke Anderson worked with builder Melissa Adelaine-Supernault to rescue both this dark, dreary 1980s kitchen and the homeowner, Kathy Adelaine, who was so dispirited by the space that she’d almost stopped cooking. Working within the existing footprint, Brooke enlarged the windows to let in more sun, and Kathy’s choice of a classic white palette played off all that new light and allowed her to accessorize with a range of bright happy colors.

Brooke pulled on her design expertise to efficiently utilize every inch of the kitchen. Among her clever strokes: taking the cabinets to the ceiling to increase storage, and outfitting the cabinets with rollouts, a baking sheet organizer and a tiered cutlery rack. Upgraded stainless range and side-by-side refrigerator replaced outdated black appliances. A dishwasher concealed by a wooden panel blends seamlessly into the cabinetry. Faux wood vinyl flooring and Cambria quartz countertops that look like marble lend a sophisticated feel—but will stand up to heavy use. A nostalgic white-enamel farmhouse sink rounds out a kitchen that has Kathy back cooking again—and the space is laid out so well, there’s even room for friends to help. Last holiday season, she says, five women baked comfortably shoulder to shoulder. Umm, well make that four women who were actually working: “One had tried the punch too many times but it all gets done,” Kathy says with a laugh, adding, “That’s what family gatherings are all about here and this kitchen really works.”

Softly Sophisticated

#6 Blandford

08698 Curtis Lane, Petoskey

Nancy Blandford, CMKBD, ASID, Built-In Design, 231.675.6892, builtindesign.net
Cabinetry: Crystal,
Built In Design
Appliances: KitchenAid, Witbeck
Plumbing: Corian, Moen Accessories & Small Appliances: Cutler's Petoskey

Driving Directions: From the North: Head south on U.S. 31 at the junction of U.S. 31/U.S.131. Turn left on Camp Daggett Rd. go 2.2 miles, turn left on St. Louis Club Rd. go .6 mile, turn left on Curtis Ln. (Portions unpaved.) House is on the right.

From the south: At U.S. 31/M-66, head north on U.S. 31 through Charlevoix 12.6 miles. Turn right on Camp Daggett Rd. Turn left on St Louis Club Rd.  

This lovely kitchen, the center of a rebuilt old cottage on Walloon Lake, shimmers like a raw pearl thanks to backsplash tiles made partly from iridescent glass. Look closely and you’ll see that what glitters is—thanks to designer Nancy Blandford—also extremely functional. Nancy drew upon her years of design experience to include details like a charging station (phone, tablet, computer …) tucked into a pantry off the mudroom, and two pop-up Mockett outlets on the generous island. Still, it’s the carefully thought-out detailing that stars in this kitchen. Building on the arched edges of those iridescent backsplash tiles, Nancy encouraged the homeowners to choose antiqued glass-fronted cabinets embellished in a leaded oval design. That same attention to soft edges led her to suggest rounding one end of the island and to select open cabinetry topped in an arch design. Other details include Caesarstone honed-quartz perimeter countertops in rosemary complemented by the island-top of sagebrush Corian and the island base made of maple stained in slate gray. Woven leather stools from the catalog NapaStyle encourage guests to share a glass filled from the under-counter wine cooler nearby. All that style floats on a high-gloss ebony-colored, hand-scraped angelim (imported wood) floor.

Northern Beach Chic

#7 Hamburger

09447 Las Olas Drive, Charlevoix

Cheri Ford-DuBay, CMKBD, Indesign, 231.547.0650, indesignfirm.net

Cabinetry: Pinnacle Cabinet Company, Indesign
Appliances: KitchenAid
Plumbing: Moen, Blanco Designer: Katie Rudnick

Driving Directions: From U.S. 31/M-66. Go east on M-66 6.1 miles, turn left onto Las Olas Dr., Villa Nuava Association, (Portions un-paved). House is on the left.  

This kitchen in a cottage rebuilt on the site of the old family cottage is a stunning finesse of style and materials. The inspiration behind the design was a magazine story about a home in Florida that captured a beach chic style. The challenge was to take that casual but breezy coastal feel and translate it into an Up North vernacular. Designer Cheri Ford-DuBay solved that style conundrum by infusing tropical details including louvered cabinet doors that mimic tropical shutters into a warm taupe palette that feels simultaneously beachy and Northwoods. Cheri went on to pair those cabinet doors with horizontally grooved cabinetry—a sophisticated modern take on vintage cottage style that also continues the horizontal lines of the louvered doors. Another masterful touch is the porcelain tile floor in a faux wood pattern that is as much a beautiful blend of climate styles as it is functional in a high foot-traffic cottage.

Industrial stainless pendants over a sleek cinder-colored Caesarstone peninsula speak to both function and style. The waterfall countertop edge is a graceful punctuation to the peninsula that begins with a wall of cabinetry and continues through the sink/work area. As a final touch, Cheri contrasts those hard surfaces with floor-to-ceiling drapes on the generous kitchen and living room windows. Linen, of course, being as perfectly suited to the sensibilities of a Northern lake cottage as it is to the tropics.

Red, Gray and Sleek All Over

#8 Walker

1431 Peninsula Dr., Traverse City

Angela Goodall, Kitchen Choreography, 231.932.9700, kichentchoreography.net
Cabinetry: Pinnacle,
Kitchen Choreography
Installer: Durecki’s Wordworking
Countertops: Stratus Marble  & Granite Appliances: Wolf, GE Bosch, Sub Zero, Max’s Appliance

Driving Directions: From E. Front St./U.S. 31 and Garfield Ave., go north on Garfield Ave./M-37, continue 0.5 miles (becomes Peninsula Dr). House is on the left 0.2 miles past Eastern Ave on Peninsula Dr.

This sleek kitchen is the product of one of the hottest design teams in the North: Kitchen Choreography and the architect/design firm Whiteford Associates. Homeowners Ed and Karen Walker have always loved contemporary style, so it was high time to renovate their kitchen, which was no longer contemporary after 25 years. The guiding principle behind the new look, says Kitchen Choreographer’s Angela Goodall, was to “blend a little white and gray, with a few touches of cranberry red (Karen’s favorite color), then add an ultra high sheen, and you have a show stopper.”

The largest challenge in creating the kitchen, Angela adds, was to develop a high-gloss finish that could withstand the demands of a working kitchen. Kitchen Choreography worked with Pinnacle Cabinetry to apply a finish very similar to auto body finishes. To achieve the shine, each cabinet had to cure for a four-hour period and then be buffed to the optimal sheen level. The result is a crisp, clean and beautiful look that is also very durable.

Dark polished-granite countertops and a glass tile backsplash keep the light bouncing across the surfaces. A pop of cranberry behind the glass cabinet doors warms things up, and radius ends on the island and peninsula add soft lines to the otherwise linear look.

The great style also delivers on big efficiency and workspace. Karen especially loves the generous center island and the large, easy-to-open drawers, where she stores most of her dishes. “I’m short so they are really convenient at that level,” she says.

The Tribute Kitchen

#9 Rhein

224 S. East Bay Boulevard, Traverse City

Marty Rhein, CKD, CBD, BAC Design Group, Traverse City, 231.941.0014, bacdesigntc.com
Builder: Bay Area Contracting
Tile & Granite: Traverse Tops/Stratus Marble & Granite/Tilestone Imports
Windows: Old Mission Windows Appliances: Max’s Appliances

Driving Directions: From E. Front St./U.S. 31 turn left to stay on E. Front St. (E. Front St. is just past W. College Dr.) go .5 mile. Turn right onto E. Bay Blvd. S. 224 E. Bay Blvd. S. is on the left—across from East Bay Park.

The story behind this gracious traditional kitchen begins when, after raising a family in their house, the homeowners began collecting pieces and ideas for a kitchen renovation. Sadly, however, the wife passed on before the renovation began. Her husband decided to go ahead with the renovation, both as a tribute to her and as a place where their children and grandchildren could gather.

Designer Marty Rhein used both extensive meetings with the husband and a photo the wife had clipped from a magazine to launch the design process. Marty began the transformation by moving a wall to open up a view of Lake Michigan. He then went on to define a traditional look with fine maple cabinetry—painted off-white and glazed in pewter with inset doors and a furniture feel.

After the husband came to him with a box of china that his wife had never displayed because she had no place for it, Marty designed a cabinet that displays china above and serves as a baking center below. He finished the counters with the Canterbury pattern of Cambria the wife had chosen, then accentuated them with a warm, coppery wall paint. Details pull it together: Pewter hardware plays up the cabinetry glaze; copper tiles set into the tumbled marble backsplash reflect the Cambria counters; molding, custom milled to match the cabinets, stretches over the sink and throughout the ground floor.

The homeowner, who was away for the bulk of the renovation, came back to find the beginning of the fulfillment of a dream he’d shared with his wife. More of that dream will unfold with each batch of cookies he pulls out of his new oven for his grandkids: “He’s going to cook and bake and do all that for his grandkids,” says Rhein, who adds that the project became far more than a job for him.

Around the Hearth

# 10 Bargiel

305 Knollwood Drive, Traverse City

Sandra Bargiel, CKD, Bay Cabinetry & Design, Traverse City 231. 946.6882 baycabinetry.com
Cabinetry: Showplace
Builder: Raymond Paddock
Solid Surfaces: Cherryland Cut Stone
Appliances: KitchenAid, Max’s Appliance
Windows: Pella Plumbing: Elkay, Delta

Driving Directions: From Peninsula Dr. and M-37. Go north on M-37 1.2 miles, turn left on Wakulat Dr. .3 miles, turn left on Mathison Dr. .6 miles, take first right on Knollwood Dr. .1 mile. House is on the left.  

Designer Sandra Bargiel opened up this once-cramped kitchen to an adjacent dining room, creating one beautiful space that functions for cooking, eating and doing crafts—all in front of a lovely fireplace topped with a cherry mantel. The cooking area gleams with a stainless steel stove backsplash and glossy white subway tiles—outlined in brown grout to mimic the color of the adjacent brown-leather granite countertops. The former windows were widened to flood the room with light, and a new oak floor blends with the existing aged flooring in the rest of the home. And the pièce de résistance: a radius-shaped cherry countertop at the end of the island to seat more people comfortably and create a seamless transition to the great room.

Tuscan Beauty

#11 Baldauf

354 Water Watch Lane, Traverse City

Dawn Whyte, Lake Street Studios, 231.347.1977, lakestreetdesignstudio.com
Cabinetry: Ayr, Designs by Dawn
Interior Designer: Renee Guthree Design
Builder: Wildwood Builders
Fabricator: Capital Granite
Appliances: Subzero, Wolf, Asko Plumbing: Blanco, Moen

Driving Directions: From Peninsula Dr./M-37 Split. Go north on M-37 3.2 miles, turn left on Underwood Ridge. Go .3 mile, take first right to stay on Underwood Ridge. .4 mile, take the 2nd right onto Water Watch Lane. Go .2 mile. House is on the right.  

This lovely Tuscan renovation set in the vineyard country of Old Mission Peninsula is rooted in a family’s love for one another. When both of Hal and Betty Baldauf’s daughters and their families decided to settle on Old Mission Peninsula—one to raise organic wine grapes and the other to grow hops—the couple decided to purchase a free-standing condo on the peninsula as well. The Baldaufs, who had worked with designer Dawn Whyte previously, turned to her once again to renovate the kitchen in their new house.

Set in wine country as this home is, the Tuscan theme was a natural. To achieve the Old World look of a loved kitchen that has evolved over decades, Dawn mixed rustic alder cabinetry with cabinetry painted in the shade Tuscan Ivory. Both types of cabinets are Amish-built in Indiana. The 2.5-inch-thick Temptation Quartzite countertops make a subtle statement about strength and things that endure.

Rounding out this luxurious redo are a tumbled marble backsplash with a crushed glass accent, wrought iron pendants and upholstered stools that are coordinated to match the dining room chairs and window covering—all by interior designer Renee Guthrie. Beautifully carved dark wood columns transition the kitchen into the living area—also done in a Tuscan style.

Kitchen Liberated

#12 Karczewski

454 Wilson Road, Traverse City

Sandra Bargiel, CKD, Bay Cabinetry & Design, Traverse City, 231.946.6882 baycabinetry.com
Cabinetry:  Showplace
Solid Surfaces: Cherryland Cut Stone
Builder Design Craft Homes Appliances: GE, Bosch, Max’s Appliance

Driving Directions:  From #11 Baldauf. Go West from Water Watch Lane .2 mi, turn right on Underwood Ridge., go .1 mile, take first right .09 mile, go right onto Horizon Dr. .4 miles, turn left onto Wilson Rd. .05 mi. House is on the left.  

The Karczewskis are both avid cooks and love to entertain. But their kitchen was small, dark, dysfunctional and separated from the dining and living area. They wanted out of the cave! Credit designer Sandra Bargiel with freeing them by rearranging space and removing walls to flood the kitchen with light and connect the entertaining and dining spaces with the kitchen.

Open as it is, the kitchen is outfitted with distinct zones—his and hers, food prep, cooking and cleaning. Another standout is the 6-by-6-foot pantry/display area that extends the kitchen into the dining area.

Sandra went on to create a classic yet dramatic look by pairing white painted cabinetry with Carrara marble, honed so that it will be allowed to age gracefully. A 10-foot-long island is topped with the durable exotic wood species iroko—oiled to stay food-safe. The couple’s much-loved Paul Revere–style chandelier got a new life in a new context—over the island instead of in its traditional role over the dining room table. Lighting over the dining room table then became a lesson in the sort of detail that transitions this kitchen from classic to distinct: seven insulator glass caps, retrofitted into lights, are hung in staggered, strategic positions over the table.

Marmee's Kitchen

#13 Stanek

7461 S. Center Highway,Traverse City

Designer: Angela Goodall, Kitchen Choreography, 231.932.9700, kitchenchoreography.net
Cabinetry: Fieldstone, Kitchen Choreography
Installation: Leugers Custom Installation
Fabricator: Cadillac Cut Stone

Driving Directions: From the junction of M-22 and M-72 on the west side of Traverse City, follow M-22 north 3.2 miles and turn left on E. Crain Hill Rd. Proceed .7 miles, turn right on S. Center Hwy./C-633 and continue 2.5 miles. House is on the right.  

This spectacular remodel of Pegy (known by her grandchildren as Marmee) and Jerry Stanek’s farmhouse kitchen pays homage to the home’s roots with quartersawn oak cabinetry, neutral-toned granite, subway tile backsplash, apron sink, vintage-style bin pulls in a rubbed bronze finish and lighting that mimics old gas lamps. But those period elements belie a room fit for cutting-edge cooking and entertaining. Highlights include a pantry bank that opens to internal shelving and a maple-cherry butcher-block prep area designed to hold a gourmet cook’s dream collection of small appliances. When company arrives the pantry doors can be closed to hide the mess until after the party.

Other contemporary amenities include more storage and nooks designed for a laptop printer and a television. Jerry requested (and received!) a coffee station away from the main prep area and a seat at the island for enjoying his coffee. The modern transformation was complete when a built-in hutch was removed to make space for a bar area that opens into the living room.

A Queen's Kitchen

# 14 Griffiths

2611 Crescent Beach Road, Manistee

Designer: Vern Mast Os-Co Kitchens, 231.768.4609 Cabinetry: Os-Co Kitchens
Appliances: Electrolux,
Wolf, Max’s Appliance Plumbing: Elkay, Moen

Driving Directions: From U.S. 31 South and 8 Mile Rd. (near Onekama), take 8 Mile Rd. west 1.5 miles to M-22, turn left on M-22, go 1.8 miles to Crescent Beach Rd. Turn right, go 1.6 miles. House is on the left.  

Amish cabinetmaker Vernon Mast feels the kitchen is the most important room in the house: “A house is not a home without a kitchen—made and prepared especially for the queen of the home,” he says. That lovely sentiment fits his client Mary Griffiths to a T—she is, after all, the kind of woman who added two sinks to her new kitchen, so that when her daughter and family are on break from their missionary work in Uganda, everyone can work together in the kitchen. Then there is the double oven she wanted so that, “on rainy Michigan days there is a roast in one and cookies made by the grandchildren in the other.”

Not surprisingly, Mary designed ample counter space into the kitchen in her new home on Portage Lake, utilizing an island and a three-sided double-tiered bar-counter along with perimeter counters. Vernon worked with Mary to craft the island, counters and cabinets from cherry, glazed in a chocolate shade. With inset doors and scrolled corbels to hold up the Delicatus granite countertops, Vernon’s cabinetry is the perfect complement to this gracious kitchen.

Get this guide to go! This article was first featured in October/November 2012 Northern Home & Cottage, included in October 2012 Traverse, Northern Michigan's Magazine. Click here to order both issues for only $4.95 and take this guide, accompanied with beautiful photography of each home, along with you on the Ultimate Up North Kitchen Tour.

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