One way to know what's wrong with a kitchen is to live with it for a couple of years. A great way to fix it is to share your vision with an architect and a carpenter who have already created something similar—in the architect's own home. "That was my apprenticeship," says wood wizard Dave Michael, recalling his path from the vaulted kitchen of architect Jon Sarkesian to the one they built for David and Jennifer Dilley.
The Royal Oak, Michigan couple had worked with Sarkesian on the redo of a family-owned furniture store when they asked him to bump out their 1940s bungalow, enlarging its kitchen to suit a family of four. "They wanted to keep the scale cozy," says Sarkesian, who expanded the space—but not too much—with a light-channeling, barrel-vaulted ceiling and an open plan.
See A Kitchen Opens Up for Family Living
for more information on this bold remodel.