It was time to renovate. After all, it had been more than a hundred years since Ryan Coyle’s 1901 farmhouse was built just outside Indianapolis. Coyle, a designer, contractor and owner of Vive Exterior Design, had visions of a “modern rustic” space with clean lines and lived-in textures. Also on his list? A wide-open, upgraded kitchen—a far cry from the tiny blue one he bought. “Back when the house was built, everyone had small kitchens; there was no need for anything big,” Coyle says. “But we wanted an open concept. So we made the old bedroom, bathroom and living room area the new kitchen.”
First, the chartreuse carpet had to go. Beneath the shag, Coyle found that the home’s original wood floors were buckling, so he salvaged some of the floor joists (read on for what he did with those!) and laid down hand-hewn wood flooring in a deep cocoa shade.
Coyle completely rejiggered the home’s layout to achieve greater kitchen size. By connecting the existing home to a detached garage built in 1940, he took the home from 1,700 square feet to 5,500—and made room for a spacious kitchen. He built out the area with beams reclaimed from a nearby barn, propping them up as posts and trusses to give the low ceilings some structure. Coyle also added gusset plates at the joints to give the beams a tough edge.
Oh, and those floor joists? Coyle had them planed down and reused them as countertops. Clean, unfussy white cabinetry below lets the wood detail shine. More reclaimed barn wood formed the austere island, a rustic centerpiece made modern by a stainless-steel farmhouse sink and a concrete pad on top.
Still, too much wood, and the space would have looked like a lodge, so Coyle countered the country with cool gray walls and sleek metal touches. (Farewell, frilly wallpaper border!) Stainless-steel appliances, nickel cabinet hardware, industrial-modern stools and a Satori faucet add shiny sophistication.
The dusty old ceiling fan wasn’t much of a lighting “scheme,” so Coyle tore it down and illuminated the new kitchen with a four-tiered plan. The original windows were salvageable, so during the day, those flood the space with natural light; recessed cans do the job by night. Craftsman-style pendants hang over the island as task lighting, and coordinating lantern-like sconces attached to the beams add industrial ambience.