Kitchens are redesigned more often than any other room, Howell said, because they endure the most use.
Remodeled kitchens also generate higher values than other rooms for the resale value of house, he said.
Lisa Kawski, of lmk interiors, also enlarged a kitchen for clients in Wenham using several different means.
“Previously, the kitchen had a dark feeling, with dark cabinetry,” she said. “We wanted to give them more space, an open, airy feeling.”
As with the Howells’ design, Kawski first had to move some appliances.
“Part of the problem was that, when you entered from the dining room into the kitchen area, you walked into a dishwasher at the end,” she said. “It was not convenient if it was left open.”
That was solved by enlarging the space, from what was originally a galley kitchen with “a very small, eat-in nook” with room for one cook.
Kawski cut out a wall — which required adding a steel beam to support the ceiling — to double the kitchen’s size.
The space was further enlarged by creating a “country French feel” with “cream finished cabinet treatments” and toile-style wallpaper with a floral pattern.
Robin Sears of Wenham relies mostly on her paintbrush to bring the best out in a room and will feature her own kitchen on the Wenham Museum tour.
“I have a super-old house,” she said, “and I wanted it as if it stopped in the 1940s — with a 21st-century twist.”
Her kitchen has a checkerboard pattern on the floor and includes a refrigerator and stove from a company that manufactures “retro” models.
“It has a green and yellow linoleum floor and painted wood cabinets with a collapsed apron,” she said, “but I’ve dressed them up with a twist: they wouldn’t have had pink and yellow and green in the middle of the century.