I was thrilled to see a story on the cover of the Washington Post Magazine this weekend about Susan Toffler’s Chevy Chase home, designed by the late modern architect David Condon and recently renovated with the help of Designer Susan Vallon. A lot of blogs have already re-posted this story, but what I am most focused on is the kitchen, full of vintage St. Charles cabinets.
I found out about this project last year when I was an editor at Washington Spaces, but The Post smartly snapped it up when the magazine folded in December.
Toffler’s original St. Charles kitchen is in good company: Frank Lloyd Wright used the cabinets at Falling Water in Pennsylvania,
and Ludwig Mies van der Rohe used them in the Farnsworth House in Illinois:
I had known about St. Charles from a visit to the Kitchen and Bath Industry Show a few years ago, shortly after the Viking Range Corporation bought it and revived the brand, which was founded in 1935.
“We took it back to its roots, and we re-launched it in its iconic state,” said Jim Gregory, the general manager of St. Charles who answered the phone himself when I called the company number today.
But rather than customers seeking a retro look, he said, St. Charles is seeing younger people who are after a thoroughly fresh design. “I think we’re seeing an extreme amount of interest from people in their 30’s and 40’s who are really into minimal design,” Gregory said.
So this is what you get today:
Another think going for these sleek cabinets is that they are extremely eco-friendly. Jim tells me that the steel is 98 percent recyclable, and that 70 percent of them are made from already-recycled products.
AND, there are 23 colors to choose from:
After writing this post, I’m filled with St. Charles envy — ahh, someday!
For those who want it today, the local dealer for the company is kitchen designer Nancy Thornett of Nancy Thornett Associates.