Book Report: The New Bungalow Kitchen

If you’re a lover of bungalow homes and want a chance to drool, I suggest The New Bungalow Kitchen, a recently published Taunton Press book by Virginia architect Peter LaBau.

“Classic charm meets modern convenience,” the book jacket says. “Craftsmanship, comfort, and a little piece of history. This is what bungalow kitchens are all about.”

The book is lushly illustrated with images of 17 bungalow kitchens all across the country, with two of them by architects in Pasadena. With all the detail shots, however, the 200-plus glossy pages of the book seem to suggest many more kitchens than that.

The first question one might ask is: What is “bungalow style”? This book says it “refers to a type of small (usually one-story) house built in the United States between 1900 and 1940. Bungalows almost always featured large, deep front porches . . . and almost always had many windows.” Typical elements inside include pronounced wood trim around windows, doorways, ceiling moldings and baseboards; hardwood floors; built-in furniture such as china cabinets, bookcases and window seats; stained-glass windows; tile work; and subdued earth colors. Ah, I’m starting to get the picture.

The book is divided into these sections: The Allure of the Bungalow Kitchen; Making Room: Reconfigurations and Additions; From Floor to Ceiling: The Interior Shell; Out of the Box: Cabinetry, Counters, and Built-ins; The Working Kitchen: Appliances, Fixtures, and Gadgets; and Finishing Touches: Lighting, Hardware, and Climate Control.

The book helped me answer a question I had about putting slate floors into a Craftsman cottage. Would slate look good? Be consistent with the era and style? Yes, it turns out. And even though hardwood floors are common in bungalow homes, so are linoleum floors, which I think are so cool.

As a big bonus, the back of the book lists each of the kitchens and information on where to buy the various tiles, knobs, lighting, counters, appliances, and cabinets you just got finished salivating over.

1 Comment on Book Report: The New Bungalow Kitchen

  1. John

    I checked out this book and would not recomend it for someone interested in an authentic bungalow kitchen. Buy Bungalow Details by Jane Powel instead. So much better and true to the aesthetic.