Installation Stories: At home with Chaine Homme
All Images: Reagen Taylor Photography
Interior designer Becca Stephens and architect Jen Hill collaborated on this cozily eclectic kitchen featuring our Chaine Homme tile in Slate Blue. (The "H" of our Chaine Homme was an easy choice to stand for Jen and her husband's last name, Hill). Both of these talented women believe in a collaborative design process and this sentiment is so apparent in this project. We're sharing more about this kitchen collaboration below, but first here's a bit about Jen and Becca:
Jen Hill is an owner and principal Architect at CDK Architects. CDK formed to bring architecture to clients in a simple and clear format and Jen specializes in residential architecture, including new construction and remodels. She is particularly excited about the process of architecture from a collaborative and relationship-driven standpoint, where clear communication and honesty are the keys to project success.
Becca Stephens Interiors is a boutique interior design firm that specializes in residential design. Becca has a passion for global textiles and her projects are often travel-inspired or art-driven spaces. She values client collaboration as she seeks elements that allow her clients to connect personally and meaningfully with their homes. Becca always aims to create fresh and modern-- yet charming-- spaces.
Now, onto this beautiful kitchen! Can you tell me about this home? Is there a story behind the project you'd like to share?
Jen: Initially, the project started out as a remodel/addition to our existing 1949, 2 bedroom, 1 bath home. We wanted more space because I was using the guest bedroom as my office, and we were hoping to grow our family. But when we compared the cost of adding on and remodeling vs. building new, we saw that new construction made more sense and would allow us to build the kind of house we really wanted. It was important to us to re-purpose the old home. Rather than demolishing it, we worked with our contractor to disassemble the house piece by piece, eventually donating about 80% of the home to Habitat for Humanity.
How involved were the clients in the design process?
Becca: Jen was involved in every step and found and suggested most of the materials. I served mainly as a consultant/curator for her to bounce ideas off of and to help bring together the overall vision. We presented our ideas to Ryan (Jen's husband) and made sure he was happy with the selections, too. It was a true collaboration between Architect, designer, and home owner.
What type of look or aesthetic were you going for?
Warm, modern, unpretentious/approachable, organic. We wanted the house to look unique and colorful without being too whimsical.
How did you come up with your color scheme/design?
Ryan asked for very little white and gray, so that drove the decision to use color in the tile, cabinetry and other finishes...we wanted to use color in an organic and sophisticated way, rather than it being quirky or trendy.
What made you go for Chaine Homme? Were there other shapes up for consideration?
Becca: Ryan and Jen found Chaine Homme and liked that it had an "H" for Hill. When Jen showed it to me I was immediately on board with it. I think I told her she had to use it before I saw any other options! I still think it was the perfect choice. I love how the glaze gives a handmade appearance but the shape is classically mid-century modern, so it fit our warm/modern aesthetic perfectly. We considered a couple of blue colors but thought the slate would add sophistication and depth and loved the idea of using white grout to really highlight the pattern. We chose the green cabinet color to coordinate with the slate tile.
Tile Shown: Chaine Homme in Slate Blue
How did the installation process go? Did you face any challenges?
The contractor was initially concerned that the edges of the tiles didn't line up perfectly (since they're hand-made) and would therefore look odd, but we all agree that it looks great!
Had either of you worked with our tile before?
Becca: Yes, I have used the Ogee pattern in another kitchen and loved it.
Tile Shown: Ogee tiles in White Wash
Jen: I showed Fireclay to a friend in Houston, and she used one of your tiles for her kitchen remodel.
Lastly, which other of our colors/shapes are you hoping to use in future projects?
Becca: I'd love to use the Chaine Femme now! I'm also loving the pickets, so maybe those will show up in a project soon. Picking colors is always difficult because there are so many gorgeous options.
Jen: I also am really drawn to the Chaine Femme! I guess Becca and I need to do another project together soon so we can use it!
Tile Shown: Chaine Femme in White Wash