Oct 8, 2014

Room of the Week: Ian Butcher, Best Practice Architecture

Category: Dining Room
Architect: Ian Butcher, Best Practice Architecture
Location: Seattle

Goal: The Capitol Hill couple that owns this house loved its open concept floor plan, but they wanted to create a more intimate dining experience within the lofty kitchen/living/dining area.

Inspiration: A white oak paneling system visually separates the three public areas, while allowing them to stay connected.

Breakdown: Architect Ian Butcher used the paneling system to create a distinctly defined dining area, while keeping the open flow between the kitchen and living room. “My idea was to treat the design as an intervention within the space to improve areas and hide irregularities with a system that could be expanded upon if my clients wanted,” he says. “The paneling replaces a weird railing, establishes a system for attaching modest steel shelves, and allows for a cost-effective way to hide some of the less appealing parts of the house, such as the can lights, existing fireplace surround, and TV wires.

The paneling envelops the dining area, bringing warmth and texture to the space. A round dining table from Restoration Hardware is surrounded by mismatched antique store chairs custom-painted in a bright blue that unifies the different styles. A Rich Brilliant Willing light fixture hangs over the table, and clear-coated mild steel floating shelves display pictures and other collected items.

Tips to Get the Look: “Think about how materials or textures can fold and bend around surfaces or walls to define space,” Butcher says. “And don’t be afraid to paint old pieces of furniture.” 

Image courtesy of Mark Woods.

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