At Home With Design Pros: Lori Graham

What do local architects and interior designers put in their own kitchens? A Sub-Zero refrigerator, Adora Piston white-leather stools, and Artic Pear chandeliers.

By: Mary Clare Glover, Emily Leaman

Attorney turned interior designer Lori Graham had options when deciding where to put the kitchen in her 19th-century Victorian near Dupont Circle. The building had housed an art gallery for 30 years, and there was only a tiny kitchen on the third floor.

She decided to build a new kitchen between the living and dining spaces on the first floor. “I loved the open floor plan from an entertaining perspective,” says Graham, who hosts dinner parties and fundraisers.

Attorney turned interior designer Lori Graham had options when deciding where to put the kitchen in her 19th-century Victorian near Dupont Circle. The building had housed an art gallery for 30 years, and there was only a tiny kitchen on the third floor.

She decided to build a new kitchen between the living and dining spaces on the first floor. “I loved the open floor plan from an entertaining perspective,” says Graham, who hosts dinner parties and fundraisers.

With input from her husband, Richard Berman, Graham settled on a design that marries masculine and feminine. She balanced the stainless-steel appliances and chunky marble counters with playful Lucite cabinet pulls and a white glass backsplash behind the range. The plaster molding, custom-made, is covered in high-gloss white paint to help reflect light.

Above the island, Graham hung two Arctic Pear chandeliers by the London-based design house Ochre. She had fallen in love with the brand after using its pieces in clients’ homes.

Another thing she couldn’t live without: a Sub-Zero refrigerator. “I’ve had a professional crush on it since it came out,” she says. Graham chose a 48-inch side-by-side model with a glass-front refrigerator and four freezer drawers below. Contractors had to reinforce the floors to support its weight.

Graham anticipated one major drawback to her open floor plan: Messes would be visible to guests. She installed a pantry behind a pair of pocket doors covered in paneling that matches the cabinetry. Inside she put a countertop where she stashes dirty dishes during dinner parties. “Now we can enjoy our guests and deal with the mess later,” she says.

WHERE TO BUY
Want to recreate Lori's kitchen in your own home? Here's where to find it.

Refrigerator: Sub-Zero
Hood, range, microwave, oven, and warming drawer:
Viking
Countertops: Statuary marble (three inch) from Maryland Stone Source
Cabinets:
Wood-Mode cabinets from Aidan Design (Regent Collection in Nordic White on maple)
Cabinet hardware: Lucite pulls and knobs from TheParisApartment.com
Backsplash: Waterworks white glass tile in “Bamboo” pattern
Floors: Parisian Pattern oak floors stained Ebony from Kentucky Wood Floors
Island lights: Arctic Pear chandeliers by Ochre
Stools: Adora Piston stools in white leather from ModernCollections.com
Sink: Franke
Faucet: Elio by Dornbracht

This article first appeared in the October 2010 issue of The Washingtonian.

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