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Modern/European Kitchen Cabinets

Discussion in 'Fine Living, Home, Design & Auto' started by CommercialDoc, Mar 26, 2008.

  1. Violinist

    Violinist Senior member

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    If anything the '70s are underrated. People who are into Modernism have a fetish for the '50s and '60s and many tend to look down on the '70s as tacky or plain ugly. This is especially true of "Modernist capitals" like LA.

    My idea of the perfect compromise of what you call sterile modernism and "warmth" are the designs of Edward Durell Stone:

    [​IMG]



    I admit I have a particular fascination for strictness and discipline in design; there's something quite Teutonic about the idea, which I like. That said, I also appreciate something more organic and florid though in measured doses.


    The floor is to die for. I just do not like how they use wood, as beautiful as the screen is.
     
  2. LabelKing

    LabelKing Senior member

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    The floor is to die for. The door at the end of the hallway looks like it's made from the material you'd find in a college dorm room. The kinds of wood they used depress me.
    It seems many mid-century buildings used a variety of engineered woods and copious amounts of fancy veneers.
     
  3. Violinist

    Violinist Senior member

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    It seems many mid-century buildings used a variety of particle board and copious amounts of fancy veneers.

    yea exactly. Particle board and plywood with some cheesy veneer.
     
  4. LabelKing

    LabelKing Senior member

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    yea exactly. Particle board and plywood with some cheesy veneer.

    Some fancy veneers are very beautiful, notably the ones used by the Deco makers like Ruhlmann and Leleu, and also some of the Scandinavian stuff like zebrano and rosewood.
     
  5. itsstillmatt

    itsstillmatt Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    Some fancy veneers are very beautiful, notably the ones used by the Deco makers like Ruhlmann and Leleu, and also some of the Scandinavian stuff like zebrano and rosewood.
    Solid wood is not the best idea in a kitchen. The heat and humidity change too much. Anyway, veneer has always been the choice for fine furniture and cabinetry, with solid wood being more for peasants. The only thing that has really changed over the last many years is the surface below the veneer.

    As to something earlier, I hate wenge and don't understand the attraction to it at all. When we first moved in to our place, our designer chose all Christian Liaigre stuff, much of which was wenge. I guess he revived the stuff in the public eye. After about a year I was so tired of it that I sold every bit on Ebay, without having anything new on order. The good news was that we sold it for about 90% of what we paid and then were able to choose good looking stuff.

    Just seeing pictures of it makes me ill (not ours, but typical):

    [​IMG]
     
  6. Violinist

    Violinist Senior member

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    Solid wood is not the best idea in a kitchen. The heat and humidity change too much. Anyway, veneer has always been the choice for fine furniture and cabinetry, with solid wood being more for peasants. The only thing that has really changed over the last many years is the surface below the veneer.

    As to something earlier, I hate wenge and don't understand the attraction to it at all. When we first moved in to our place, our designer chose all Christian Liaigre stuff, much of which was wenge. I guess he revived the stuff in the public eye. After about a year I was so tired of it that I sold every bit on Ebay, without having anything new on order. The good news was that we sold it for about 90% of what we paid and then were able to choose good looking stuff.

    Just seeing pictures of it makes me ill (not ours, but typical):

    [​IMG]


    yea as I said previously, wenge wood depresses me.

    These sort of 70s veneers all remind me of those station wagons with the fake wood panelling on the side... the vehicle of perverted insestuous uncles everywhere.

    I once saw great cabinetry with cocobolo veneer. It was really beautiful.
     
  7. itsstillmatt

    itsstillmatt Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    yea as I said previously, wenge wood depresses me.
    Yeah, I like bleached oak even less (less even when somebody calls it cerused). The use of these kinds of woods in a modern context doesn't work at all for me. The attraction to modernity, at least for me, is as much the use of innovative materials as it is the absolute design. When you slap "warm" woods on to it, I get the feeling of somebody who heard modern was the cool way to go, but didn't really want to live with the real concept.
     
  8. Violinist

    Violinist Senior member

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    Yeah, I like bleached oak even less (less even when somebody calls it cerused). The use of these kinds of woods in a modern context doesn't work at all for me. The attraction to modernity, at least for me, is as much the use of innovative materials as it is the absolute design. When you slap "warm" woods on to it, I get the feeling of somebody who heard modern was the cool way to go, but didn't really want to live with the real concept.

    yea, they want to make "clean" liveable. Either do it or properly or fuck it. The new opera house in Toronto is such a dissapointment, with all this blonde (might it be bleached oak?) everywhere.
     
  9. LabelKing

    LabelKing Senior member

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    Solid wood is not the best idea in a kitchen. The heat and humidity change too much. Anyway, veneer has always been the choice for fine furniture and cabinetry, with solid wood being more for peasants. The only thing that has really changed over the last many years is the surface below the veneer.

    As to something earlier, I hate wenge and don't understand the attraction to it at all. When we first moved in to our place, our designer chose all Christian Liaigre stuff, much of which was wenge. I guess he revived the stuff in the public eye. After about a year I was so tired of it that I sold every bit on Ebay, without having anything new on order. The good news was that we sold it for about 90% of what we paid and then were able to choose good looking stuff.

    Just seeing pictures of it makes me ill (not ours, but typical):

    [​IMG]

    No, wenge is slightly pretentious looking, and by now, rather common looking.

    For me, one of the great high points of veneered furniture was France in the '50s--lots of exotic, possibly now endangered, woods done in beautiful glosses. Of course, now a lot of factories offer that sort of look in a cheap sort of way.

    Blonde wood is the bane of contemporary design. Every high end store, hotel or establishment does blonde wood. One notable example is the John Lobb Paris shop, which they unnecessarily revamped to the tune of something one might expect in an airport duty-free shop.

    I think for a lot of people they are more attracted to the idea of modern and contemporary design than its actual realization--oftentimes, it might be too "difficult" for them.
     
  10. c3cubed

    c3cubed Senior member

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    Some fancy veneers are very beautiful, notably the ones used by the Deco makers like Ruhlmann and Leleu, and also some of the Scandinavian stuff like zebrano and rosewood.

    Now I'm absolutely convinced if you could go back in time, you would have sailed transatlantic on the Normandie. But happily there would have been nothing of the Scandinavian sort to confuse the deco delineation in your stateroom
     
  11. johnapril

    johnapril Senior member

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    I suppose my Alsacian roots and Midwestern American upbringing find me in a bit of an odd niche with regards to interiors. My house has these red oak floors that previous owners abused terribly and we restored. The refinishers wanted to replace a lot of the boards that had been damaged by screws and other quick fixes to take the squeak out of the floors so they could put carpet down. I said, keep the wood, keep the history, keep the past, fill the holes. The guys thought I was crazy.

    As far as solid wood being for peasants, that's a pretty limited view, though it may be accurate. The Amish have built us several solid wood pieces that I wouldn't trade for all the modernist stuff I could haul in a semi. Nevertheless, I appreciate the modernist aethestic. With this place, I responded to the materials I found rather than gut the place and start over.

    Also, I'm not an engineer, but I highly suspect your statement about wood being a poor material for kitchens because of humidity. That's a nice toss out line, but I doubt it holds up as well as a solid wood cabinet in a kitchen.
     
  12. LabelKing

    LabelKing Senior member

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    I suppose the solid wood furniture for the peasants is more in line with traditional European furnishings. That certainly seemed to be the case with French furniture--the now ubiquitous French provincial styles all tended to favor solid woods while the grand pieces were composed of complex veneers and things like ivory and tortoise-shell with bronze inlays.

    Of course, with things like sofas, chairs, etc. solid wood was preferred, though it was usually gilt to no small degree.
     
  13. Violinist

    Violinist Senior member

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    I suppose the solid wood furniture for the peasants is more in line with traditional European furnishings. That certainly seemed to be the case with French furniture--the now ubiquitous French provincial styles all tended to favor solid woods while the grand pieces were composed of complex veneers and things like ivory and tortoise-shell with bronze inlays.

    Of course, with things like sofas, chairs, etc. solid wood was preferred, though it was usually gilt to no small degree.


    I was never excited by provincial furniture making until recently, and even now it's not my favourite. I've always favored Baroque period things, because they used such incredible materials. I wouldn't really want to live with it, but it is great to look at.
     
  14. LabelKing

    LabelKing Senior member

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    I was never excited by provincial furniture making until recently, and even now it's not my favourite. I've always favored Baroque period things, because they used such incredible materials. I wouldn't really want to live with it, but it is great to look at.
    Personally, I am not a fan of provincial styles of furniture for various reasons. Firstly, I don't really like the look of it; and secondly, it is slightly tacky given the ubiquity of it. You see a lot of French Provincial kitchens and the like. Baroque is something that I'm quite keen on, but it's something taken in small doses unless you have a period-appropriate interior to match.
     
  15. Violinist

    Violinist Senior member

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    Personally, I am not a fan of provincial styles of furniture for various reasons. Firstly, I don't really like the look of it; and secondly, it is slightly tacky given the ubiquity of it. You see a lot of French Provincial kitchens and the like.

    Baroque is something that I'm quite keen on, but it's something taken in small doses unless you have a period-appropriate interior to match.


    Yes, it's almost impossible to do. I have seen some Russians get it right, as they seem to be the ones who can stomach it, and are obviously the kind of Russian who can afford to do it.
     
  16. LabelKing

    LabelKing Senior member

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    Yes, it's almost impossible to do. I have seen some Russians get it right, as they seem to be the ones who can stomach it, and are obviously the kind of Russian who can afford to do it.

    Russians seem to have this national appetite for opulence, whether ersatz or the real deal.
     
  17. johnapril

    johnapril Senior member

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    What about black walls?
     
  18. LabelKing

    LabelKing Senior member

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    What about black walls?

    With a black swan pattern.
     
  19. GQgeek

    GQgeek Senior member

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    Solid wood is not the best idea in a kitchen. The heat and humidity change too much. Anyway, veneer has always been the choice for fine furniture and cabinetry, with solid wood being more for peasants. The only thing that has really changed over the last many years is the surface below the veneer.

    As to something earlier, I hate wenge and don't understand the attraction to it at all. When we first moved in to our place, our designer chose all Christian Liaigre stuff, much of which was wenge. I guess he revived the stuff in the public eye. After about a year I was so tired of it that I sold every bit on Ebay, without having anything new on order. The good news was that we sold it for about 90% of what we paid and then were able to choose good looking stuff.

    Just seeing pictures of it makes me ill (not ours, but typical):

    [​IMG]


    I have a wenge dining and coffee table.

    [​IMG]

    They look pretty decent and most people like how my apartment is decorated. I'm getting sick of my dining room chairs, but they are comfortable. I'm itching to upgrade but I can't justify it until i get a couple more years out of this stuff cause I don't have your cashflow and won't get what I paid for it. On the same note, you have many more options than most people. If you take me for instance, when I moved in to a much bigger apartment, I had to buy everything at once. I liked contemporary furniture so I went to a mid-end contemporary furniture place and there was a ton of wenge. I certainly couldn't afford Capellini prices when I was outfitting the entire place at once. Hell, I still can't afford capellini prices. [​IMG] Btw, we're starting to see lacquer filter-down into the mid-end places again, and boy is it tacky. It looks nothing like your stuff.

    Thankfully, I never did do the bedroom though. I've tried so hard to find something I really liked but have failed. I blame the overly thick pillowtop mattress but I'm not giving it up because i sleep so well on it.

    I'm going with custom furniture maker in the future. I really took a liking to the Kagura stuff that Nantucket posted and I found a guy that does the same sort of japanese-style woodwork in Montreal. I anticipate placing an order with him for my bed within the next few months after I wrap my head around what I want for the long-term because it's going to be expensive and durable.

    I don't know why I wrote all this except that I'm bored.
     
  20. LabelKing

    LabelKing Senior member

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    What about these are dining room chairs?

    [​IMG]
     

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