Form vs function/Practicality vs design in appliances
I'm torn whether my first priority in choosing kitchen appliances should be function and practicality or look/design feature. (And, I am dealing with a husband who thinks it is ridiculous to pay extra for something like colored paint on a range.)
Here's my situation. I live in a fairly upscale older, urban neighborhood so, while I am not thinking of resale, I need to stay in line with what expectations are in kitchens here. I have a kitchen with 1920s birch cabinets in a honey tone (some original and some we had custom built) and hardwood floors. I have white appliances because I think they are more appropriate for the feel of the era and because stainless leaves me absolutely cold. I want the ambiance and feel (not an exact duplication) of a kitchen of that era rather than a current trendy kitchen. It is time to get a new range and new countertops; I am strongly thinking about soapstone countertops.
The range is what is problematic. Our current range is a 30" slide in, but if we spend a bit on carpentry we could figure out how to put in a 36". All of the white appliances are on different walls than the range.
Easiest and more practical would be to put in a good quality 30" stainless steel box (that is exactly what they look like to me) like every manufacturer sells. This is what my husband votes for rationalizing that stainless is fine, all manufacturers highlight stainless currently, we could get a true cook's range with high BTUs, and having a stainless range on a different wall from the white appliances would work well visually. Or, if I want to go little more design-oriented, I could get a stainless range with the colored front panel. This is what my husband thinks is ridiculous, and he can't believe I would pay more (around $600) for the same appliance just because it would be more aesthetically appealing to me. Or, the most impractical choice would be to get a 36" colored Aga Legacy we have found as a discounted floor model. The specs as far as burner type and BTUs on this aren't as good as the other more pro-oriented stoves that are real cooking machines we are considering. And, its oven sizes are miniscule, but I have a wall oven too so this is not a major consideration. So, the Aga would be a total trade off of performance for style and looks. But, it certainly is cute and appealing visually for the theme of my kitchen.
Has anyone faced a similar dilemma? What would you do? Should I be swayed by the promise of those mega-sized Bluestar or Viking burners? Or, would I be happier with a cuter but less real cook-oriented Legacy? I do cook, probably quite a bit better than most people, but am by no means a foodie or someone who is constantly turning out gourmet meals. And, even though he is resisting I think I can get my husband to go in whichever direction. It is just that I am not 100% certain myself other knowing that I really hate plain stainless. Thanks.