While remodeling homes along the East Coast, interior designer Blair Moore invented a new word to describe her aesthetic.

“Broody” is the intersection of bright and moody, and it’s embodied perfectly in the Moore House Design founder’s recent renovation of a Barrington, Rhode Island kitchen. With a palette of dark browns, creamy whites, and charcoals, she created a contemporary, English country-side inspired culinary haven for a young family.

When Moore first arrived, however, the space was riddled with unfortunate ‘80s updates like laminate counters and stock trimwork. It was also devoid of any original elements that might’ve been worth keeping, so she gutted the room and started from scratch. Here’s how she built a dreamy-yet-dramatic kitchen from the ground up.

Custom desk with white cabinets

White moody kitchen corner

Staying On Budget

Though the clients wanted a luxurious look, they had limited funds to achieve it. So Moore opted for IKEA bases with Semihandmade DIY Shaker doors on the lower perimeter for a chic traditional finish. “It had to be a budget-conscious project, but we didn’t want to lack in style,” she explains.

Moore cleverly painted the fronts in a light greige with a yellow undertone so that they wouldn’t reflect the green of the lush garden that can be seen through the casement windows. She then decided against upper cupboards to remain economical and minimal. 

Going Custom

For continuity, Moore designed the custom center island with bead detailing that plays off the Shaker cabinets. She used white oak for its construction and then stained the wood in a dark hue. “We wanted walnut without the cost of walnut,” she reveals.

The seating at the island, which is topped with a natural soapstone surface, is also custom. Wolcott Stools from Moore’s upcoming e-commerce line feature a rounded back, a comfortable down cushion, and tweed-like upholstery for a true British vibe. “That fabric set the tone for the whole project,” she shares.

Island view of a moody kitchen

Adding Intrigue

Since Moore had a blank slate, she infused the place with architectural charm that she imagined might’ve once existed. She hired artisans to hand-plaster the walls for old-world texture, she installed nickel gap cladding on the ceiling to make it appear higher, and she fashioned an arched alcove with a built-in bar. 

A vintage rug, black walnut and brass chain pendants, and an asymmetrically-set floating shelf add visual intrigue, as well. They’re a collective cherry on top of a thoughtful, high-quality kitchen that feels totally broody.

Curved archway over a built-in bar

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