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Dekton gives new life to century-old loft kitchen

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Food, home and lifestyle photographer Yvonne Duivenvoorden (originally hailing from New Brunswick) recently paired up with design expert Karl Lohnes to renovate the kitchen of her loft studio in the charming east side of Toronto.

You have most likely seen some of Yvonne’s work on packaging, advertising, national magazines such as Best Health and even cookbooks! No stranger to mess that comes with this line of work, she knew she required something durable, easy to maintain but beautiful on camera.

That is why Karl, who has previously graced HGTV, Style at Home and Metro News and who is now the home design & decor specialist for Global Montreal and the Montreal Gazette, chose Dekton for the space!


Dekton gives new life to century-old loft kitchen


Karl, what was your design concept for this space?

The space was a true industrial hard 100-year-old loft that had been used as a photographer’s studio for the past 20 years. It needed to retain a balance of ‘true-loft’ but softened in order to become more liveable.


Why did you choose Dekton?

Dekton is the perfect choice for this kitchen. Concrete was the only original element to contend with and after 100 years, it was showing wear and tear. Dekton is, as concrete was 100 years ago; super-durable. I wanted to pair the interior with something that would take the loft into its next 100 years.


Tell us about the colours you chose and why different finishes?

Everything pays homage to nature and is kept very simple: concrete, stone, wood and metal. No fancy wallpapers, tiles or coloured finishes that might have a trendy shelf life. Off white, natural oak wood and a mix of warm/cool stone look keeps this former chewing gum factory loft timeless and neutral.


Dekton gives new life to century-old loft kitchen

Karl chose a combination of Dekton Halo for the island and Dekton Entzo for the countertops and backsplash, adding a dramatic yet subtle touch to the space with its gold veining.


What are the biggest design trends this year? Any predictions for what’s to come in the near future?

Simple and Less. That’s my go-to with decorative finishes for the upcoming years. No more than 3 elements will be invading a room’s décor. I think we will see a love of monochromatic schemes.


If you could design any project of your choice using Dekton, what would it be?

I love using Dekton to top antique tables. It gives us a chance to keep true old beauties while protecting the top surface and making them feel more modern. I would love to design a staircase with Dekton; since this material can also be used outdoors, a stairwell that bled from inside to outside a house would be spectacular!


Dekton gives new life to century-old loft kitchen


Yvonne, what is your favourite feature of the newly renovated kitchen studio? 

My favourite feature is really the overall look that’s been achieved through the combined use of materials. The kitchen has a distinct Scandinavian feel, but the backsplash and countertop provide warmth and add just a touch of luxury.


As a food photographer, what is the importance of a good surface/countertop? 

The kitchen is a hard-working space that needs to accommodate the demands of a fast paced photo shoot. Countertops need to be resilient and be able to withstand everything that a food stylist can throw at it.


Dekton gives new life to century-old loft kitchen


And so why did you choose Dekton?

The Dekton has lived up to its reputation for being extremely durable and resistant to a long list of elements.The backsplash area behind the stove often becomes yellowed after a day of grilling, for instance. But the Dekton cleans up effortlessly. The countertops have also withstood spills, heat and general wear and tear, without any problems.


Dekton gives new life to century-old loft kitchen

The matte finish of the countertops and backsplash has virtually no glare back, making it an ideal surface for photography!


You have been working in the new space for a few months now, how are you liking it?

I love the new kitchen, but equally important, the food stylists that I work with are loving the space!  The stylists are integral to a successful photo shoot, so I need to keep them happy! They appreciate the amount of work surfaces that’s been incorporated, the layout, the lighting and the kitchen’s general practicality.


If you had to give just one tip to take a beautiful food picture, what would it be? 

Avoid harsh lighting. Food looks best when photographed under soft lighting conditions. If you’re outdoors, avoid shooting your plate of food under direct sunlight – take your plate to a shadier location instead, if possible. If you’re indoor, move away from the cast of overhead light fixtures, and opt instead for indirect daylight near a window.


And there you have it! A kitchen that is resilient, has lots of workspace and is absolutely dreamy!

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