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modern black cabinetry with wood paneling

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This series of blog posts features designers who have been recognized by Decor Cabinets LTD and awarded an Elite Design Award (EDA) for their designs with Decor products. Brianne Avis is being featured for her win in the Decor Specialty Rooms category.

Brianne Avis
Casey’s Creative Kitchens

Wood is Back, and in New Ways

Flashbacks of dark 1970’s floor-to-ceiling panels may scare people off the idea of wood paneling. However, wood is making a comeback in home design in a variety of new ways: feature walls (like wood slat walls and molding details), accent islands, vanities, upper or lower cabinets, and of course, built-in wall cabinetry.

When I chatted with Brianne, the designer of this luxurious office space, she said “There’s just something about having the natural grain of the wood show through, that brings a warmth and life to a space that you can’t get with a painted finish”.

Not only are warm natural wood tones coming back, but wood TFL (thermally fused laminate) products are becoming increasingly popular. This engineered panel can mimic wood textures, giving that organic feel to contemporary and modern spaces.

Office space

Wood Grain TFL Panels

Adding wood paneling is a great way to bring warmth into a design. We have seen TFL panels be used as backing panels like this project or on kitchen islands and as cabinetry end panels. This material doesn’t age like wood, it’s easily wipeable, and it’s often more cost effective than real wood.

In this project, TFL wood panels are the backing for this custom bookshelf unit. The wood grain look provides contrast to the rich black bookshelf and adds organic tradition to the modern space.

The Design Brief

The client is a custom home builder, designing a home in London, Ontario. At the time they anticipated this new build would be a lottery home, so high-end finishes and design elements needed to wow for resale.

Lottery homes need to have the wow factor, potential buyers walking into each room need to fall in love and imagine themselves living there. The more people that walk through and love the home, the more likely they are to buy tickets (raising money for local hospitals). This presented a unique challenge for the design: Creating a space that isn’t tailored for just one client’s taste. Brianne was up for the challenge.

By using modern finishes (like the rich black on the bookshelf cabinetry from Decor Cabinets) combined with traditional elements (like the ladder rail and wood paneling from Zonavita), she was able to put together an office that would appeal to a large audience.

Balancing Wood Paneling with Other Elements

It takes a talented designer to make wood paneling look luxurious, modern, and accessible to everyone. Here are some additional design elements that Brianne used to create this wow-factor office.

Contemporary Lighting

Lighting played an important role in creating the ambiance of luxury. Each of the shelving areas is outfitted with puck lighting, creating the perfect spotlight for books and décor items. Brianne explained that in scenarios like this, she prefers puck lights rather than strip lighting because it creates a more intimate feel.

Traditional Ladder Rail

The ladder rail is Brianne’s favourite part of the project. Reminiscent of the scene where Belle sweeps through the Beast’s library in the Disney classic film Beauty and the Beast, this ladder rail brings tradition and whimsy to the space (while being practical of course).

Modern Shaker Door Profile

To keep the design from feeling too traditional, Brianne chose a modern shaker door profile. Shaker cabinets are a clean and simple 5-piece cabinet door design. This style is popular right now and definitely a crowd-pleaser.

Don't Be Afraid of the Unexpected

This stunning office space is beautifully elevated with this custom-built in. It just goes to show that you shouldn’t be afraid to mix design styles or use materials in unexpected ways. The use of wood paneling in this bookshelf is a stunning reinvention of traditional wood paneling, adding warmth and luxury to the home.

If you are looking for stand-out cabinetry, contact Brianne Avis at Casey’s Creative Kitchens.

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Materials Used:
Maple Cabinetry in Ebony Finish
Door Style P1_62_62_L
Drawer Style 5 Piece Ply Panel
O/S Profile L

Zonavita TFL Panels

Discover Your Dream Kitchen With Decor

Discover Your Dream Kitchen With Decor

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