Published on November 14, 2020

wood and stone open kitchenPin It
PHOTOGRAPHY BY NICOLE FRANZEN; DESIGN BY ROBERT MCKINLEY

A low kitchen ceiling didn’t phase Robert McKinley and his wife, Kate Nauta, when renovating their latest rental property in Montauk, New York. “We thought, let’s just bring it down even further,” recalls McKinley. They didn’t actually end up changing the one-story home’s roofline, but the designer did break up the open floor plan by hanging a floating wood structure over the island that serves two purposes: pot rack and light. 

The oiled white oak fixture is an idea McKinley has been toying around with lately (and hopes to one day re-create and sell). Its rounded top supports custom brass S-hooks that hold heavy stainless steel pans and simple wooden spatulas, but you could theoretically put anything up there that has a hole on one end. “It’s a nicer version of the typical industrial rack,” he says. “There’s something very cozy about having it just above your head.” 

pots hanging from island lightPin It
PHOTOGRAPHY BY NICOLE FRANZEN; DESIGN BY ROBERT MCKINLEY

The underside of the piece is tricked out with a smart LED light by Lucetta Lighting, a company McKinley says is one of the few making strips with a dim-to-warm feature (something you can usually only get with a normal incandescent bulb). 

The pendant’s convenient placement over the stovetop, which has been seamlessly integrated into the stone counter, makes it easy to grab and also see everything you need when you’re cooking. You care about what light is on your desk, so why not what illuminates this workspace? 

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