Designing an interior with a relaxed atmosphere is no easy task. Visual harmony has to be achieved, minimizing any freneticism and avoiding the use of bright, aggressive color palettes. Neolith, a market-leading brand of Sintered Stone, was recently specified by top stone fabricator MKW Surfaces for a contemporary kitchen conversion in a Victorian terraced house. The project is the perfect example of restrained design, effectively demonstrating how less is often more.

Even in the Quietest Moments

“The brief for the kitchen was to create a monolithic element within the open plan space," said architect Xinyu Xie. "It had to become the focal point of the space both visually and functionally, interacting with everyday family life unostentatiously.”

As such, a combination of unobtrusive but visually engaging materials was essential to delivering the desired, uncluttered ambience. “We chose Estatuario Silk because it perfectly matched the requirement of the design brief," said Xie. "It makes the kitchen island jump out from the other spatial elements, but in a subtle, not overwhelming way.”

Combining classic marble motifs, matte grays and natural wood, the kitchen now has a clean, crisp décor. Flooded with natural light from large, timber-framed windows, the room evokes a quiet grandeur. This creates a perception of a much larger space than actually exists.

Rock on Wood

It is well known that Marble and the Wood so different in appearance, complement each other to create stylish and sophisticated interiors.  Here is where Neolith offers a different solution.

Xie’s decision to combine these two patterns reflects his interest in the design of traditional domestic spaces in East Asia, he comments, “where spatial simplicity and harmony is a dominant theme. Particularly I wanted to use elements of wood in conjunction with stone as a mental stimulus, distinguishing the setting as a residential one.”

Furthermore, the use of large windows and a glass door establishes a connection with the property’s outdoor space, allowing plenty of natural light to spill into the kitchen, emphasizing the cool elegance of the marble and the natural grain of the wood.

The kitchen embodies Xie’s considered and holistic approach to design.

A Gentle Force

A technical masterpiece, this project neatly encapsulates the finesse and skill of fabricators MKW Surfaces, one of the capital’s leading suppliers of stone worktops.
Neolith’s exceptional performance qualities and highly detailed designs have made it a material of choice for residential architects and interior designers.

Commenting on the project and working with Neolith, Alan Brian Nussbaum, co-owner and co-director of MKW Surfaces, says “The consistency of the material is great for fabrication. In this case, the finish has incredible definition, which is difficult to match with other surfaces.”

Regarding the impact the brand is having on the world of architecture and design, Nussbaum continues, “It should not be underestimated. We believe Sintered Stone is now the main contender to quartz, which has recently overtaken granite to become the most popular decorative surfacing option on the market. We only see the appetite for using Neolith growing in the future.

“Furthermore, Neolith’s ability to capture the exact look and feel of traditional building products such as concrete and cement is appealing to specifiers who can achieve the look and feel of these products without the environmental stigma. Neolith’s 100% organic composition and new water-based inking technique (HYDRO NDD-2.0) means that it can meet the most rigorous sustainability brief.”