Stephanie Shortridge

Posted on Nov 5, 2021
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Hi! I’m Stephanie Ann Shortridge (SAS for short). I’m a millennial artist and designer currently living and creating in the Phoenix area. Follow me as I take you through the design process for the kitchen in our new home.

Project Background

When my husband Kelly and I saw the Santa Barbara Spanish-style architecture of our two-story townhouse, we fell in love and knew it had to be ours. Our goal is to fix it up and enjoy living in it for a few years. Then we’ll add it to our rental portfolio and move on to our next project/home.

We wanted to enhance the Spanish feel of the home while modernizing and personalizing it to make it uniquely ours. We chose neutral tones as the backdrop to our otherwise bold color palette. We also love the Spanish curves and wanted to continue them throughout the home.

A Tiny but Fabulous Kitchen

We wanted our home to feel warm, casual, and inviting. Our goal was to choose materials that age well. If they also hid imperfections, so much the better! When entertaining in our beautiful new kitchen, the last thing we want guests to notice are the flaws that arise from daily living.

The original kitchen felt cramped and tiny, so we opened up the wall between it and the living room. The niche where the old pantry stood now gives us a walk-up bar as well as extra counter space. As a bonus, we worked out a trade for all of the cabinets and appliances, which were still in great condition. We gave them away in exchange for help with the demo. A win-win!


Picking the Right Tile

We used a light gray 12″ x 24″ Pietra Italia porcelain tile from Arizona tile on the floor. These beautiful tiles were laid in an offset pattern to make the room feel more spacious than it is. I love the fact that this tile has a concrete or limestone look. The soft color variations throughout help hide spills. That’s why I carried it into the adjacent laundry room. Our dog’s food and water dishes are in there and this tile hides even that kind of messiness!

The tight structure of this gorgeous tile makes it dense enough to not only hide stains, but resist them as well. We love this tile so much, we carried it up the backsplash and behind the range. It adds richness and character while maintaining the clean, modern aesthetic we were going for.

When it was time to select the countertops, we looked no further than Arizona Tile. This time we chose Olympian White Honed marble from a historic gallery quarry in Vermont. The subtle streaks of light gray, flecks of black, and shimmery white in this lovely stone give it plenty of movement and life. The black, single basin undermount sink we chose looks so good against the marble! The little flecks of black in the marble tie the two together seamlessly.

Whether you’re looking for tile or stone, Arizona Tile is an easy one-stop shopping experience. Especially since we hauled our tile samples out to their onsite slab showroom to find the perfect match!

Finishing Touches

The tile, countertop, and backsplash are so striking they set the tone for the rest of the kitchen’s color palette and artistic styling. Since we got married at the beach, it was important to incorporate our love for the ocean into the heart of our home. That’s why a framed copy of Winslow Homer’s Eagle Head Beach hangs above our kitchen sink. What a lovely sight to gaze upon as we do the most menial of kitchen tasks!

Our countertops and backsplash are a perfect complement to the black stain we chose for both the upper and lower cabinetry. Our white oak floating shelves look stunning against these dark cabinets! They also provide the natural element needed to warm up this mainly black and white kitchen. Our full suite of Samsung stainless steel kitchen appliances and brushed nickel pulls and knobs look fantastic against the dark cabinetry.

If you would like to see photos of our other projects in progress, feel free to visit my Style by SAS blog. You can also follow me on Instagram @stephanie_shortridge. I look forward to seeing you there!

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