2020 Kitchen & Bath Design Contest: 4th Place Kitchen, Alair Homes Decatur

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Heather Shuster, Alair Homes Decatur

Heather Shuster
Heather Shuster, Photography by Krys Alex Photography

Heather Shuster, a partner at Alair Homes Decatur, teamed up with local design firm GordonDunning Interior Design to deliver this stunning and sophisticated kitchen remodel. “The homeowners wanted some texture and glamour in the space, but also valued a really modern feel,” Heather explains. Bringing the stone backsplash to the ceiling added both texture and drama to the space that is balanced out by the use of darker wood tones on the bottom half of the kitchen.

Kitchen Details:

  • Backsplash: Tilebar
  • Cabinetry: Dove
  • Countertops: Hanstone

Tips to Make It Yours:

  • Use tile as your decorative element, take it to the ceiling
  • Mix cabinet finishes, but make sure one is darker than the other
  • Find a space to go a little over the top

Uncut Q&A’s 

1) What is your official title and do you have any special design qualifications?

Partner with Alair Homes. I am an owner and have worked with our design partners to collaborate on a huge variety of projects. In the past, I was a project designer creating new layouts, kitchen projects and additions. As a partner, I select the right designers and architects for our clients and help guide homeowners through the renovation process.

2) What was the most challenging part of this design?

This project was designed with Alair and Gordon Dunning. The most challenging aspect was the odd shape of the kitchen with a clipped corner. We were still able to work within this layout to find a great kitchen solution.

Kitchen by Alair Homes Decatur
Photography by Sarah Dorio

4) What were the client’s needs for this kitchen and in the end their favorite feature(s) of this design?

The homeowners wanted some texture and glamour in the space, but also valued a really modern feel. The wallpaper in the butler’s pantry was a bold and special choice.The homeowner’s already had some really nice bold artwork, so the wallpaper as well as the emerald cabinetry was a nice way to keep some strong design elements in the space.

5) What is your general design philosophy when it comes to kitchens/bathrooms?

I always want the space to function well for the homeowner. Do they cook a lot, entertain, big family or looking for a quiet corner for coffee. Making the space work for their lifestyle is first priority. Then find the character elements that make it feel unique and personalized.

6) What is a common mistake homeowners make when redesigning their kitchen/bath?

Cull what currently resides in your kitchen cabinets/pantry. A really good purge ahead of design lets us know how much space and what kind of space you need in the newly renovated kitchen.

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