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Room remix

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Written by Vivian McInerny   
Tuesday, September 04, 2012

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Fancy countertops, nice cabinetry and the latest, greatest appliances would be nice. But that wasn’t top on the list for Sally and Steve Killgore’s dream kitchen. They wanted space for their five grown children and nine grandchildren to come together for holidays, special occasions and spontaneous cuttings of the rug.

“When we get together, we usually end up dancing in the kitchen,” Sally says.

Their 1977 five-bedroom ranch in Eugene had plenty of square footage for the couple, but the layout wasn’t conducive to their ever-growing gatherings. Sally wouldn’t even consider moving.

“I moved 27 times in my first 26 years and never want to move again,” she says. “My father was a restless soul.”

The Killgores met with a design team from Neil Kelly to talk in general terms about remodeling the kitchen, but they intended to wait until after their youngest daughter’s backyard wedding reception. When they came back to the drawing board about five months later, their needs had changed. Sally’s mother, Shirley Brown, had moved in with them. Now, in addition to the kitchen remodel, they were considering how to accommodate three adults living under one roof. They needed to rethink the entire space.

“We go through a process,” says designer Matt White of Neil Kelly in Eugene. “Our job is to find out what the clients’ preferences are, what their hot points are.”

The design team came up with several rough sketches of possible solutions.

“It was hard to visualize the space,” says Sally. But when she and Steve looked through the sketches, they both immediately knew they had found the one.

The plan they chose called for creating a large open kitchen/dining/family room, giving their mother their master bedroom and building a new wing to serve as the couple’s suite retreat.

“The existing kitchen functioned but was cut off from the rest of the house,” says White.

2012OctNov RoomRemix 01 2012OctNov RoomRemix 02 2012OctNov RoomRemix 03

The Killgore family wanted space for four generations to gather, so they forfeited bedrooms and knocked down walls to create a kitchen that opens onto a family room and outdoor room. The design team at Neil Kelly in Eugene avoided an overmatched look in favor of a mix of stone, glass and wood.

The family shakes it up to Single Ladies by Beyoncé. From left: Sally Killgore, daughter Emily Beutler, mom Shirley Brown, Steve Killgore and daughter Katie Killgore-Harris.

An indoor/outdoor gas fireplace does double duty serving as a focal point in the family room and the covered patio.

Photos by Fred and Holly Stickley

Click on images to view larger




0 #1 RE: Room remixAuntie Connie 2012-09-05 10:46
Just beautiful. Everyone looks great.

Love You!
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0 #2 Re Room RemixVivian McInerny 2012-09-05 10:51
I believe there is still some room on the dance floor.
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0 #3 Song by Kate PowerVivian McInerny 2012-09-26 10:56
This story needed a soundtrack. When I first talked with the Killgores and heard how they liked to dance in the kitchen, I thought of the original song by Kate Power called the Kitchen Waltz.

Power is an indie folk musician who, along with Steve Einhorn, ran Artichoke Music in SE Portland for many years. They've since moved to NYC.

Kate generously let us put her song on our site. Click on the gray box in the upper left side of the page called Kitchen Waltz.

Warning: Listening to her sweet Irish voice singing about dancing in the kitchen may make you teary.
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0 #4 You know you want to hear moreVivian McInerny 2012-09-26 19:36
I love these two people. Here is link to their site for when you crave more.
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