When Elizabeth Thomas’ family moved from Miami to Seattle, they knew they wanted an updated kitchen that fit with their lifestyle and reflected their contemporary aesthetic. After finding a great house right on the water, they began looking at options for their renovation. They considered several systems, but ultimately decided on SieMatic, a German luxury cabinetry and lifestyle brand known for smart design and contemporary aesthetics.

“SieMatic really fit in with the aesthetic we wanted to have,” explains homeowner Elizabeth Thomas, “and we loved the quality.” So they contacted Cathleen Summers, principal and owner of Summers Studio, a full-service interior design firm and the exclusive SieMatic dealer in the Pacific Northwest.

Cathleen started Summers Studio after a 20+ year career in residential and commercial architecture to pursue her love of all things culinary. “I’ve always had a passion for kitchens and restaurants,” Cathleen explains, “and I think knowing how to cook myself helps me understand how a kitchen functions.” She likes SieMatic for its efficient design, comfortable features, and luxurious aesthetic, plus a nearly 100-year record of exceptional quality.

The Thomases asked Cathleen to design an open, spacious kitchen that would serve as a central hub for the house while also meeting the needs of their four-person family, which includes two vegetarians. While the layout of the kitchen wasn’t changed dramatically, the existing room was completely gutted down to the studs.

Then, Cathleen designed a new system tailored precisely to the Thomas’ unique way of cooking and living. “I always want to hear about how somebody is working in their kitchen,” says Cathleen. “A lot of the design was driven by functionality: how they wanted to cook, how they wanted to use the space, and how they wanted to interact with each other in the kitchen.”

In this case, that meant two ovens to keep meat and vegetarian dishes separate, and ample storage space for kitchen supplies and appliances. SieMatic offers an amazing array of interior components to keep utensils, dishes, and supplies organized and accessible, so Cathleen and Elizabeth selected the right organizational inserts for Elizabeth’s collection of appliances, vases, and servingware. To maintain a clean, contemporary aesthetic, components like the microwave and range hoods were installed inside the cabinetry. The Julian sink was custom-made to fit the kitchen’s offset drain, and finished with a Blanco faucet.

When it came time to choose the cabinetry finishes, Cathleen saw an opportunity to achieve one of the core goals of modern architecture: softening the line between indoors and outdoors. “When you’re in the space, it’s amazing how much the sky and water play in the kitchen,” says Cathleen. “They get quite a bit of light.” To showcase that, they opted for glossy cabinetry around the perimeter of the kitchen to bring even more outdoor light in.

“I never feel like this place is too dark, even on the grey days,” says Elizabeth. “I love it. Everybody is always in the kitchen. You can’t even get people to go other places.”


CONTRACTOR  HAJ Construction

KITCHEN DESIGNER  Summers Studio, www.summers.studio

COLLABORATIVE DESIGNER  Bryant & Company, www.bryantcodesign.com

CABINETRY  SieMatic, www.siematic-seattle.com

KITCHEN APPLIANCES: Appliances: Miele, Sirius, Sub-Zero; Plumbing Fixtures: Blanco, Dornbracht