skylight after

A handsome 1953 mid-century modern ranch home in University City, MO retains a good amount of its original design, but the kitchen had a decidedly 1980s vibe. After living with it for 8 years, the owners were ready for a remodel.

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Their goals for the kitchen remodel were new flooring, cabinets and appliances. They wanted to trade in a dining table and chairs for a kitchen island that would also increase the amount of storage. And they longed for more light, both for tasks and to brighten the space.

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Mosby designer Jake Spurgeon is a fan and student of mid-century modern architecture and design, and was impressed with how much of the vintage quality remained in the house. So Jake designed a sleek, modern kitchen that better matches the home’s aesthetic without mimicking the era.

Flat-front maple cabinets with minimalist brushed nickel pulls create clean lines. Finishing the wall cabinets in satin white and leaving the base cabinets with a natural finish gives the kitchen movement and personality. White quartz countertops look sophisticated against a limestone backsplash and stainless steel appliances.

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Along with LED lighting under the wall cabinets and can lighting in the ceiling, the installation of two skylights dramatically changes the feel of the room. Even on gray days, the kitchen is bright and seems more expansive, which is the power of natural light.

Bamboo flooring with a light, warm finish grounds the kitchen in a graceful way. Overall, the mid-century modern aesthetic of less is more is achieved in a thoroughly modern kitchen with timeless appeal.

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Another part of this project is new flooring in the long hallway that connects the front entrance to the kitchen. Noting the original (and gorgeous) front door, Jake chose a large format porcelain tile that looks like slate. The dark flooring contrasting with white walls lets the doors pop out into the spotlight.


And let’s note a very special detail of the remodeled kitchen – the pendant light above the undermount sink. While doing measurements and photos at the start of the design phase, Jake found a particularly striking pendant light in the couple’s basement. Instead of buying a new light for the kitchen, he brought it upstairs and repurposed the vintage lamp, bringing a touch of 1953 whimsy to the new kitchen.

The homeowners are delighted with their remodeled kitchen. They’re reveling in all the extra storage and light, and the thoughtful design has enhanced their love for the mid-century origins of their home.

See a gallery of other Mosby kitchen remodel projects. To have the perfect kitchen for your home (of any vintage!), you should call the Mosby office at 314.909.1800 or contact them here.