By: Caitie McRae

Sir Winston Churchill’s famous quote ‘Never, never, never give up’ should resonate in the minds of every Algonquin graduate. Kimberly Silcox, 28, an interior designer with Laurysen Kitchens, is living proof of the mantra’s success.

A 2007 graduate of Algonquin’s interior design program, Silcox asserts that passion and determination inherently brew accomplishments.

“It’s just dedication,” Silcox said. “It’s not an easy road. This business is very competitive so you just have to be dedicated to the industry if this is where you want to work.”

After testing out the waters at different jobs, Silcox has been working for Ottawa’s Laurysen Kitchens Ltd., a family-owned manufacturer of custom kitchens, for three years. A self-described artistic person with an interest in people’s homes, Silcox put her psychology and English degree at Carleton University on hold to fulfill her budding passion. Algonquin happily opened its doors.

Nearly six years after graduating, Silcox now believes the reason she’s so drawn to kitchens specifically is that they’re, quite simply, “the heart of the home.”

“So much goes into a kitchen. There’s just so many details and there’s a lot of interest and intrigue that comes from that,” Silcox said. When asked what her personal objective is with the final product, she reflects that a kitchen “should have a little bit of personality” and stresses people should want to be in it.

That belief may have been inspired from Silcox’s experience with her own kitchen. After shying away from collaborative cooking duties with her husband due to lack of counter space and a poor layout, Silcox decided it was high time for her kitchen to undergo a facelift. When the nipping and tucking was complete, the couple found themselves happily sharing dinner duties amongst their new white and dark cherry cabinets. She adds that like her own, no kitchen is too small to reflect a unique, personal touch.

“I was happy to play with it, even though it’s not a huge kitchen. Some of my clients shy away from what they want, like two-toned colours because they don’t have a large kitchen but you don’t have to in order to play with things a bit,” she said.

When it comes to maintaining a constant, creative eye towards her designs, Silcox admits it isn’t difficult for her given the niche she has found herself in.

“It’s a passion for me, it’s not just a job. Even if it’s a weekend night, I’m looking at design websites and magazines. I really love what I’m doing which makes it easier.”

Being introduced to her clients’ design envisions on a daily basis gives Silcox a good idea of where trends are heading. It seems that in recent years, most modern kitchens have an inviting island with an open concept layout.

Silcox predicts that although this is still a popular choice, some people are devolving back to designs of yesteryear.

“There’s definitely some people who are saying they want a little more privacy when they’re cooking their turkey dinner and don’t want everyone looking at them.”

Always one step ahead with her creativity, there’s no doubt there’ll be plenty of cranberry sauce served out of a Silcox-designed kitchen for years to come.