“Donald Judd and James Turrell’s ‘Lapsed Quaker Ware’ coupled with a sense of Japanese minimalism.” Amy Kwok is explaining the sources of inspiration for her kitchen design—and it’s immediately apparent that she’s not the average home remodeler. In fact, Amy was once a Fulbright Fellow, researching architecture and ceramics under Chinese architect Wang Shu (2012’s Pritzker Prize winner). After working for several distinguished architecture firms—and becoming a mom to twins—she decided to strike out on her own.

Among her first projects: her home, a 1,000 square-foot condo in San Francisco’s Noe Valley that had last been remodeled in the late ’90s. “The arrangement of space was good, but the finishes and details felt like they could be updated and made to feel more like ‘us,’ the owners,” says Amy.

“Us” is her and her husband, I Wei. Several years ago, the two had fallen in love with a pendant light at an exhibition of Taiwanese designers in Paris. It was dubbed “New Old.” That phrase—representing the idea of tweaking tradition and reimagining classics and, more literally, making “our old space…new again,” says Amy—would become the driving force behind their kitchen remodel.

Below, a peek at the couple’s New Old kitchen, a space that, finally, feels like them.

Photography by Mariko Reed, courtesy of Amy Kwok.

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Above: “There had been water damage to some of the space and the flooring, and the kitchen had seen better days,” says Amy of the room pre-renovation. “It was not a gut renovation, but rather a quick renovation to clean and brighten up the space, and add more storage to the kitchen.”
The cabinets are made up of Ikea frames with fronts from the Basis line by Reform. Displayed on the open shelves are some of Amy&#8
Above: The cabinets are made up of Ikea frames with fronts from the Basis line by Reform. Displayed on the open shelves are some of Amy’s hand-thrown ceramics. She made custom pieces just for this project. (You can see them in detail here.) The Barn Stools are by Corral.



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