By Meda Kessler
Photos by Jeremy Enlow
A designer tackles the remodel of her own dated kitchen.
For six years, Alexis Lane has been working on the 1920 Italianate home she shares with husband Kyle and their children in Fort Worth. The two-story house is one of many interesting properties on the city’s historic Elizabeth Boulevard, but it was in need of updates inside and out. The family moved into the basement while remodeling the upstairs bedrooms and bathrooms. The pool and outdoor living area came next. And when the Lanes agreed to participate in the neighborhood’s holiday home tour in 2019, Alexis had a deadline for one of the home’s biggest challenges.
The small kitchen featured blue solid-surface counters, a bulky and oversize vent over the island cooktop, an unsightly suspended ceiling and inefficient design.
Alexis, co-owner of RueLane Design, had purchased a pair of pendant lights two years ago from Julie Neill, a designer with a lighting store on Magazine Street in New Orleans. Alexis points out the painted metal. “I loved the soft mint green color and the brass accents. They sat in a box in my office and were my inspiration for the kitchen remodel.”
As a working designer, Alexis laughs when we ask her about being her own client. “Amazingly, I made my choices pretty quickly. When I had to pick out the marble, I narrowed it down to two in about 15 minutes.” Her selection of a beautifully grained Calacatta originally was to be used on the island and as the backsplash behind the reconfigured counters. “I ended up going with a glazed Moroccan terra-cotta tile for one wall,” says Alexis. “It’s a nice contrast to the marble.” Instead of an island cooktop, she upgraded to a La Cornue range. “I got a great deal on a Suzanne Kasler Couleur Collection floor model at Expressions Home Gallery, and then customized it by shipping off the knobs to be re-plated, as I really wanted brass instead of brushed stainless.”
More brass accents can be found on the custom cabinetry, which includes sleek hardware — some with walnut accents — from the Water Street Manor collection in brass at Pierce Hardware in Fort Worth.
Alexis added pattern and picked up the mint green color of the pendant lights with window coverings using nature-inspired fabric sourced from Ferrick Mason.
An adjacent breakfast room got a new built-in banquette with kid-friendly vinyl cushions that wipe clean. The Winston dining table from Rove Concepts features a white lacquer top and walnut veneer base. It’s perfect for spreading out, whether it’s homework or a cookbook.
With a ceiling-to-floor redo (“I was sad that we couldn’t save the original parquet floors”), the project was completed — mostly — in time for the home tour.
“We cut it pretty close, and there are still a few things left to tweak,” says Alexis. “As with any project, there were hiccups, but it’s so nice to have it finished. And it’s a room that makes me very happy.”
Designer Alexis Lane, RueLane Design, firstname.lastname@example.org; Instagram, @ruelanedesign
Appliances Expressions Home Gallery, 5001 Bryant Irvin Road North, Fort Worth, 817-259-0920; 326 Commerce St., Southlake, 682-651-4000; expressionshomegallery.com
Fixtures and hardware Pierce Hardware, 4030 W. Vickery Blvd., Fort Worth, 817-737-9090; 2615 W. Mockingbird Lane, Dallas, 214-368-2851, piercehardware.com
Paint Baby Fawn by Benjamin Moore
Marble counters IMC Stone, 2100 Handley Ederville Road, Fort Worth, 817-698-5500, thestonecollection.com
Tile Zellige Moroccan tile by Clé, cletile.com
Window coverings Ferrick Mason, ferrickmason.com