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When the illustrious Lulu & Georgia team moved their office headquarters to mid-city Los Angeles, they had their work cut out for them. “The space was completely empty — just walls and floor,” says creative director Jenna Kincaid. 

While in a way, the blank canvas was a designer’s dream, the team had limited time to spend on the project. “Between our regular job responsibilities and the chaos of moving, it was difficult to find time to devote to the in-house reno,” she adds. “Fortunately, we did know that we needed a proper in-office kitchen, but we had to start from scratch.” 

Using the buildings’ unique art deco style as the sole inspiration, Kincaid and team designed a full-on Semihandmade kitchen complete with proper appliances, beautiful dinnerware, and plenty of 1920s flair in just four months. “We wanted the kitchen to be a focal point of the office,” she says of the team effort. “We were going for deep and moody, with a glamorous touch.” 

Ahead, see how the Lulu & Georgia team created an on-brand kitchen space from a single creative inspiration. 

Start With One Design Element

The art deco architecture led Kincaid to one defining design element for the kitchen: the green backsplash tile. “We were immediately drawn to the emerald green color, and we shaped the rest of the design around that,” she explains. They balanced out the hue with Semihandmade’s modern Supermatte Black Shaker cabinets and leaned into the art deco vibe with brass hardware and glass floating shelves. 

Design Around Unique Needs

Because this kitchen needed to double as a communal gathering space for roughly 50 employees, Kincaid went with a large eat-in dining table and plush cane chairs. “At our previous office, we didn’t have a dishwasher or a full-sized refrigerator,” she adds. “We made sure to incorporate these appliances in the new space, in addition to a built-in microwave, which was a huge upgrade!” 

Add Homey Touches

It’s the decorative details — like the cozy area rug, proper dinnerware, and colorful artwork — that separate this welcoming, design-forward kitchen from the standard bleak office break room. “We decorated the space like it was a home, not an office,” adds Kincaid, referencing the wooden serveware, decorative plants, and cocktail glasses. “These details really make all the difference.” 

Save Money on Cabinetry 

While the Lulu & Georgia team already saved money by taking the project in-house, they further cut costs by going the IKEA and Semihandmade route for their cabinetry. “The IKEA and Semihandmade system was a huge cost-saver when planning out the project,” adds Kincad. “Custom cabinets are pricey, so getting the look for less was a huge win.” 

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Renovation

We don’t believe that renovations should be daunting. The key is to arm yourself with the right knowledge, people, and products to achieve your goals. It also helps to ask the right questions: How much does it cost to renovate a kitchen? How do I find the right general contractor in my area? Where do I even start if I’ve never remodeled before? This is where we come in. Through hard-to-believe before and afters, first-person renovation accounts, and step-by-step DIY projects, we demystify every aspect of remodeling and give you a ton of full-house, bathroom, and kitchen renovation ideas. Semihandmade was built on a strong make-it-yourself spirit and we’re carrying that legacy beyond DIY kitchen cabinets (though we’ll certainly touch on those too) by bringing you a ton of weekend projects for novices (have you ever tried making your own planter?) and experts (try your hand at a full-wall media center). What do people really mean when they say a house has “good bones”? Before and after projects show first-hand what’s possible in a transformative remodel. How do you make the most of a narrow galley? Should you swap your upper cabinets for floating shelves? What would it look like if you opened up your small kitchen? Renovation ideas abound in our spotlighted projects. A lot goes into a kitchen renovation, but it’s usually hard to tell from a beautiful “after” shot. Our monthly series “Island Hopping” is about getting a behind-the-scenes account of what the process is like through honest conversations—you know, the kind that typically take place around a kitchen island. We’ll chat with designers, homeowners, and architects about their projects, hoping to peel back the curtain on picture-perfect spaces.