Down to the last Detail

ChillisChilli serves up three modern kitchens, with three common denominators: subtle detail, illusory simplicity and a seamless homogenous style.

TODAY’S kitchens seem to be characterised by particular design details, including concealed handles and a minimalist feel. But Alan deBattista, managing director of ChillisChilli, producers of bespoke furniture and interiors, says there are no hard and fast rules, and a general lack of
elaborateness does not translate into monotony, neither for the carpenter, nor for the client.
“Constructing pieces that are defined as minimalist is in no way monotonous. It is sometimes more challenging to combine simplicity and practicality and provide the proverbial ‘less is more’ feel while achieving all that the item is required to accommodate.”
As for the fact that concealed handles seem to be the order of the day, this is not to say that any other sort are a no-go. “They are simply a way of making a kitchen look sleek and modern, giving the minimalist look that is so popular nowadays. But really, there are no strict rules on the way handles should be designed,” Alan says. It’s almost like the idea is to disguise/camouflage the
kitchen to look like any other room, and this sometimes stems from the fact that, nowadays, living spaces are relatively smaller, he points out.
The popular open-plan design concept also plays a part, creating the need to incorporate kitchen, living and dining areas and occasionally even sleeping quarters in a single
floor, and in some cases, even in one sizeable room.

“It follows that the design will require that neither space takes over from the other. Hence the need to blend, and camouflage inevitably evolves,” Alan explains.
Kitchens are deceptively simple these days, so is the use of real and rich materials/woods paramount? For Alan while the quality of the original raw material will always have an effect on the finished product, it does not necessarily mean that the latter will be of a high standard.

“To the trained eye, at the end of the day, it is the quality of the workmanship that shines through,” he continues.


Asked whether he can envisage the day when kitchens will once again be a display of ornate and detailed
carpentry, Alan says that, as with everything else, fashions come and go.

“It is impossible to predict whether a trend will make a comeback. What is important in design is the proper use of the so-called classic lines, which will never go out of style. Whether modern, minimalist, or ornate, at the end of the day, the key to good design is good proportions, which are aesthetically pleasing, irrespective of age.”

The article was featured on Issue 12 of Places Magazine published on the 23rd of October 2016