Today there are so many different ways to customize a kitchen to a specific individuals taste. There is an infinite number of combinations and possible designs. Cabinet hardware has come a long way in recent years. There is a knob or pull for just about every different design style there is. The choices for hardware are endless because there are so many new shapes, sizes, materials, and finishes.
No standard exists for how hardware is to be installed on cabinetry. There is no right or wrong configuration, only the limit of the imagination. Back before there were so many different options, usually a knob was meant for a door and a pull was meant for a drawer. This configuration is still very common today, but many people are beginning to branch out from what was once considered the norm. Some people prefer to use all knobs, all pulls, or a variety.
With kitchens having higher ceilings than before a second row of smaller upper cabinets is frequently seen. In this instance it is the perfect place to choose something different for hardware than the rest of the kitchen. One example could be a small latch instead of a knob or maybe it switches to glass for an accent.
Mixing metals has also become quite common. For example, every metal in the kitchen does not necessarily have to match! A faucet can be a brushed stainless and all of the hardware can be a brushed gold. They may be different, but the kitchen and design still look perfectly cohesive.
The world of cabinet hardware is a daunting one because the choices seem to be endless. What may seem like a small and insignificant detail can actually make a huge impact on a space and a design. The shape, color, and size of the hardware must speak to the overall style or the design could not be as successful.
The mudroom is a room in the home that acts as a transition space into the rest of the house. It will normally be a space that is used to store shoes, jackets, bags, and sports equipment. This room used to consist of a bench and some hooks mounted on the wall for coats and other hang-able items.
The room has now become so much more. It is still a room meant for functionality, but now that has expanded to include the overall aesthetics. The mudroom is now a sought after feature in most homes. People crave clean, organized, and beautiful spaces, which is everything this space should be.
Photo Credit: https://misdiyblog.com/
Times change, and the spaces we live in have to change right along with them. People today lead much more hectic, busy lives than in years past. It makes sense that functionality and organization would become a priority for anyone leading this lifestyle.
The days of a simple bench and some hooks are over. Beautiful built-in cabinetry resides in many mudroom designs. This allows for things to be hidden from sight and properly put away. There are normally cubbies or drawers for shoes and shelving for other miscellaneous items. A built-in bench is present as well, which makes the whole space feel more permanent and grounded.
No home is truly complete without the companionship of a four-legged, furry friend. Unfortunately, those furry friends will often bring some unwanted messes along with them. The mudroom is the perfect place for a solution to this problem.
If the room is large enough then a mudroom can become the perfect multi-use space! It is becoming more and more popular to place a dog wash area in the mudroom. This makes cleaning up after your pets so much easier. No more muddy paw prints through the house!
Another great way to make the most out of this space is to incorporate another function! Most people have the need for some type of office space, but they may not need an entirely separate room for that purpose. A mudroom and an office are the perfect combination.
This creates a small space out of the way to house computers, printers, office supplies, and important family paperwork. Every house has these and this solution keeps the stuff from cluttering up other areas of the home. Because the mudroom is a transition space into the home it will also be semi-private, unless people are coming and going.
Another way to maximize the space in a mudroom would be to incorporate the laundry in that same space or an adjacent space. This has become the most popular option because many homes do not have the space for an expansive laundry area. It also allows the area to be accessible and located in a convenient area of the home.
Laundry rooms were not always glorified and Pinterest worthy spaces. Most commonly “laundry rooms” were located in the basement of the home, which is not a place where people want to spend a lot of time. This configuration allows the best of both worlds.
Functionality is so important when it comes to designing a kitchen. It helps to create a space that is stress-free, easy-to-use, and organized. Cabinets have come a long way with the addition of new inserts that help to increase the functionality in any kitchen.
One of the most common things that can be found in kitchens today are roll-outs! These can be found in the form of trays and so much more! They help to make the most out of the space by allowing for easy access to the entire cabinet, therefore nothing is out of reach. Roll-outs are also designed specifically to house spices, utensils, and other items that are often stored ineffectively. This creates a more organized atmosphere and makes it easier to locate specific items without the need to search extensively.
Small appliances have become very common in kitchens today. There seems to be an infinite number of them and some can be used multiple times daily, which makes it crucial that they are easily accessible. However, no one has infinite space on their counter tops and many people prefer to have their appliances out of sight. There are a few different ways to address this dilemma. If counter space is no issue then an appliance garage would keep them out of sight while still in arms reach. A solution that is unique to the large Kitchen Aid mixer that everyone seems to have on the counter top is a mixer pull-up. This allows the mixer, its accessories, and other miscellaneous things to be stored out of sight.
Lastly, it is always the small things that make the biggest difference. For example, a built-in organizer for baking sheets, pans, and trays keeps everything organized and easy to find. This helps to make the most use out of the space. Another small modification can be done to the area on the side of the cabinet, which can then be used for a message center, keys, and other small objects. The one that will make the most difference is the drawer organizer. This will keep all like silverware and utensils in the proper place. It will ensure that everything is neat and easy to locate.
With today’s advancements and technology there are so many different ways to make a more functional kitchen. This blog focuses on only a few of the various mechanisms that bring order to the chaos. It is important to pay attention to how you use your kitchen because what might work for someone else will not work for you and while the new gadgets can be alluring, they are also not always necessary. Keep in mind what is most important to you when you’re designing your dream kitchen.
Aside from the kitchen, the bathrooms are generally the next most work-intensive remodeling project on the to-do list of homeowners. Just like with kitchens, there are certain design trends that come and go. No matter how conscientious someone is about keeping their design classic, there will be something that will eventually go out of style. Be sure to remember that and try not to stress too much over it!
Things may be constantly going out of style, but that also means that they come back eventually! This is what can be considered the cycle of design. Try to keep the permanent fixtures and materials simple and be more bold with the things that are easier to replace down the road.
Not all of today’s popular styles look super trendy. In fact, many of them are simply bringing a twist to old ideas or freshening up some classic looks. There is nothing wrong with incorporating something in the design that is popular at the time, besides the fact that in a few years it may not be. What the consumer really needs to understand is that something can be both classic and trendy at the same time.
This is one of those trends that can also be considered classic in nature. Black has been increasing in popularity when it comes to fixtures, hardware, accent walls, cabinetry, and more! It is being used more frequently and in more applications than it was in the past, but this color is about as classic as it gets. The only color that could possibly be its rival would be white. These two opposites are the main neutrals. They are everyone’s go to colors when the objective is a simple color scheme.
From a design perspective, the contrast that this color gives when paired with the right color scheme is exactly why it has become so popular. The days of glossy black finishes are over and matte black finishes have taken the stage. This was one of the ways that the color was revived. It looks much more contemporary than before, which also helps add to its growing popularity. This is one trend that is in it for the long haul because of its versatility and classic nature. Don’t shy away from this trend!
These shower enclosures have been gaining popularity for the past few years. This is thanks to the growing industrial style and the desire to bring it into homes. This can definitely be considered something that will be more likely to lose popularity, but it is most likely to stick around as long as industrial style is still so desired. These enclosures can generally be found in a black finish and will often resemble a large window, such as one from a warehouse.
These enclosures have very clean lines and have a contemporary look and feel to them. They tend to lean more towards one design style, but they are versatile enough that if done well they could be used in a variety of styles as well. Thanks to the black finish they will also pair very well with most color schemes.
Stains are making a comeback in a big way! In the past few years it was very rare to find wood tones in a design. They had taken a hiatus to make room for the white and gray design trend. That trend has and continues to dominate the market of design. Unfortunately, all of the gray color schemes have gotten boring and drab. By incorporating a warmer stain and wood tone it helps to liven up the space.
This brings much needed warmth, texture, and interest to the design. The most common stains that can be seen are more on the neutral spectrum. Bright red and orange tones are becoming less and less popular in this market because it makes it difficult to transition from one color scheme to another. A neutral stain allows the client or homeowner to change the color scheme as often as they would like without having to change every finish in the space. This development will help to stretch out the gray color schemes, which could help to make it more of a classic neutral and less of a trendy color.
Wall mounted lights have become a standard in bathrooms, whether it be sconces on either side of the mirror or a wall mounted fixture above. They have dominated the market so much that hardly anyone will consider any other options. It has become so standardized that companies are making wall mounted fixtures that coincide with the faucet and other fixtures. This idea is so common that it has become stale.
This was not always the case, so changing up this standard is like a breath of fresh air to designers everywhere. Pendant lights are most commonly seen in dining and kitchen applications, but they are steadily making their way into bathrooms everywhere. This was once not uncommon to see and it is nice to see another past “trend” coming full circle. This opens up the options tremendously in terms of style and design. It will add interest to a normally boring and forgotten space.
Last, but not least, is the mirror. In the past mirrors were just the last piece of the puzzle that often seemed like an after-thought. It was all about the function and less about the aesthetics. When this happens in design it almost feels like something is missing; like it is incomplete. Now mirrors are getting the attention they deserve.
They now make a statement and have become an important focal point in the space. This is done by using a contrasting material, a vintage piece, or by having it framed. It isn’t just hung up on the wall anymore without an extra thought. It is now grounded in the design. The most popular mirrors are rounded in shape and less linear. This adds a nice contrast to all of the other sharp, linear features in the bathroom. It softens the space to create a space that feels more like a destination and less like pit stop.
Most clients tend to focus so much on whether something will go out of style they don’t consider their own opinion. In the end the idea of something being “trendy” becomes negative instead of positive. This is more of a consideration in interior design than other areas of the design spectrum because most homeowners are not able to make changes as frequently as needed to keep up with the changing markets. Clients just have to follow their instincts and what will make them happy and everything else should come second.
The options for countertops have grown exponentially in recent years with the help of technology and creativity. There is so much more than the laminate and granite of years past, including quartz, concrete, wood, solid surface, stainless steel, or even a combination, as well as, many more. Each option has its own benefits, as well as, its own disadvantages. The trick is finding the right option to suit the needs of the client and the design style. One option may work for one space, while another may not. In some cases, the client may want multiple countertop materials and the challenge is combining them in a way that looks purposeful and cohesive.
As with many other things in the design world, the options seem endless. The key is to steadily narrow down the options that are available. The easiest way to start is by looking at the budget for the project. This could narrow down the possibilities fairly quickly if the countertop budget is low. If the budget is larger then maybe the lower end options are ruled out. The next thing to consider is durability. How much is the space used? Does the countertop need to be durable? Lastly, the look of the countertops and how they will relate to the overall design of the space.
Laminate countertops are one of the most cost effective options because they are made of layers of plastic that have been bonded to particle board. This allows them to be made in a variety of colors and patterns. They are also more easily installed. The downside is that they are less durable and will have to be replaced more frequently. Granite is a natural stone, which means that it is porous and requires sealing. Poor maintenance of this stone will lead to staining and bacteria growth. This material is more durable than laminate because it is scratch and heat resistant, however it could chip or crack over time.
Quartz is different from granite because it is an engineered stone. It is made of 93% quartz composite and 7% binder, which makes it scratch resistant, stain resistant, and extremely durable. There is also a great variety of colors and finishes thanks to today’s technology. The downside is that they aren’t as heat resistant as granite and some of the other options and they tend to be more expensive. Concrete countertops are often formed on site or in a shop and are custom. This makes them just about as strong and as expensive as quartz, but they require the same maintenance that granite does to keep them free of staining. However, they will not chip or scratch.
Wood, or butcher block has always been a very popular choice when it comes to countertops. They are ideal for those who love to prepare food and bake. They can be sanded and refinished after years of wear, which makes them very eco-friendly and require less replacement. They do need to be sealed to avoid bacteria, and water damage. Stainless steel countertops are one of the most durable, and easy to keep clean, but unfortunately they are also one of the most expensive. They also create a sterile feeling in a space that is normally supposed to feel warm and inviting.
Last, but not least, would be solid surface. These countertops are about mid-range on the price spectrum. They are a very strong material that is seamless and non-porous. They also require much less maintenance than granite and concrete. However, they are not scratch and heat resistant like the quartz is, which could lead to more wear and tear over time.
There are still more options for countertops out there than the ones mentioned here. These just happen to be the ones that are most commonly used. Some other examples are tile, resin, marble, recycled glass, and even lava countertops. Just like with these options each one has their own benefits and weaknesses, which is why it is important to know the differences when specifying a countertop for a kitchen or bathroom application.
We find that islands are now one of the most requested features in a kitchen. The functionality of the kitchen has changed. Modern kitchens are a gathering space for family and friends, as well as, a space to prepare and cook meals. Due to this change, the design of the kitchen had to be adjusted as well. There are so many options and possibilities when considering an island. What will its main function be? Will it have seating? Will it be a prep area? Will it house appliances? Those are important questions when designing for functionality.
However, kitchen islands are not only about usefulness, aesthetics are just as important. What style are you aiming for? Will it be a simple design or will it be more elaborate? There are endless design details that relate to this topic. Islands can have matching panels, detailed legs, intricate corbels, and many other options. The trick is to make sure that those details all match with the overall style of the space and how you plan on using it.
Those details are what make infinite possibilities for the design of any island. An island can be small, re-purposed, and easily moved, such as the island on the left, which was created using an antique dresser. It is smaller that the average cabinets and can be moved. With a slight design change, the top would be able to collapse so the seating could be moved. This would allow for more walking space around the island if needed. This island is perfect for the person who needs their space to transform on a day to day basis to best suit their needs at any given time. The photo in the middle is a larger and more permanent version of the first island. The seating is permanent, but because the space and the island itself is larger there is no need for it to transform. The photo to the right has another added component, which is a built-in appliance in the island. This is most often home to a microwave drawer, dishwasher, or under-counter oven. One thing all of these have in common is counter height seating.
In the photo above on the left there is also seating, but this is different than the previous ones. This island incorporates banquet seating, which allows normal table height and will often negate the need for a formal dining table. The island on the right has a unique feature; the counter tops cascade to the floor. This is referred to as a waterfall counter top. However, this one is unique in that the material changes from one end to the other, which is not common.
There are thousands of different combinations of design and functionality that will create the perfect island. It is only a matter of discovering what is most important to have. Function? Design? Most of the time it is a marriage of the two, which creates a happy balance.
The White Shaker Kitchen, a popular and timeless design style, however, it has become so popular that it has become static. When going with a white shaker, people tend to make more subtle design choices. This is normally because they are worried that if they make a choice that is more unique or different that it will go out of style in a few years and make their new kitchen feel dated. However, I like to tell clients that as long as they love it, it will never go out of style to them.
Don’t get me wrong, there is nothing wrong with a simple White Shaker Kitchen. It is classic, neutral, and will never go out of style. However, the design is all about the details. A design can be enhanced tremendously by making some minor, but bold design choices. For example, switching things up and doing some contrasting cabinetry can certainly spice up an otherwise monotonous kitchen. By thinking outside the box the world of kitchen design gets much more interesting. The possibilities are endless.
By thinking outside the box, a homeowner can take an ordinary design and make it extraordinary! Contrasting cabinets is one of the easiest ways to add some flare to your kitchen. Some common ways to do this are to have a contrasting island or hood. Another way could be to have the wall cabinets and base cabinets different finishes.
This effect will bring some much needed diversity to any kitchen. This can also be done by simply changing the color of a painted door or by switching things up with a stained door to add some warmth and texture to the space. Either way, the space will pop with the added interest.
Backsplash is another area that holds serious potential. The classic 3 x 6 subway tile is a classic choice, but it has also become the safe choice! Even in the world of subway tile there are hundreds of different options that create a different look. From beveled subway tile to hand formed subway tile, the options are endless.
There are also other options out there that can spice things up a bit. One of the things missing from the average white shaker kitchen is texture. Texture can add so much visual interest to a design and break up some of the more monotonous finishes. Faux brick, for example, is a great way to bring some texture and color to a bland white kitchen. There are endless options out there for backsplash, including tile, metal, wood, stone, and more! So get creative!
Just like with back splash, there are many different options for countertops as well. Most commonly people tend to lean towards Granite and occasionally Formica, but thanks to the advances in technology there are so many different options. Quartz is now one of the most popular materials for countertops because of how durable and low-maintenance it is. Quartz has also advanced so much that it can now look similar to other less durable materials, such as marble.
In addition to the materials mentioned above, some other materials that can be used for a cooking surface include, concrete, butcher block, and stainless steel. Although these options are a bit unique that is exactly what will make a plain white kitchen stand out a bit. These options will add interest and further enhance the overall style that the homeowner is aiming for.
The ceiling is one of the most forgotten feature of any room. It is not often not even thought of as something that can be changed or designed. It is something that should always be thought of in terms of the design, but that does not necessarily mean that it always has to change. The best time to think about having a detail on the ceiling is when the space feels empty with out it. In a kitchen that has very little detail, it can turn it into something beautiful and interesting.
Ceiling details are also brilliant ways of adding texture to a space. The feature can be something that is simple and just enough to complete the look or it can be dramatic to make it a focal point of the room. For example, rustic beams on the ceiling is a rather simple look, but when paired with ship lap running perpendicular it makes a statement and adds more depth. These touches wrap up the look nicely and complete the design by adding a unique touch. Without adding some detail to the ceiling in a plain kitchen it looks somewhat unfinished.
Last, but not least, is another way to add interest into an otherwise ordinary kitchen. Open shelving is a perfect way to break up wall cabinets or to get some storage into an otherwise difficult space. They can store dishes or can be a place to house a small kitchen garden. By placing shelving in the space means that you have thought more about the overall design and style of the space instead of just following the norms. Open shelving is both functional and beautiful.
There are different ways to incorporate open shelving into any space. Floating shelves are perfect for the person who wants a very polished, clean look. Shelves with brackets are ideal for a more organic, modern approach. As far as placement goes, they can be used in a corner where it is normally very difficult to reach or they can be used in place of a standard wall cabinet. To be very bold some people will even replace all of the wall cabinets with the open shelving. Either way, the kitchen will be far from boring.
Lets face it, the White Shaker Kitchen is here to stay, but with these tips hopefully we can bring some fun twists to the tired classic! When designing your space, don’t be afraid to take some risks. They can be big or small, but as long as you love it you will never regret it; no matter how much time passes!
Light fixtures are one of the most important parts of any good design, but they are often not thought of as so. Without lighting there would be no way to see when it is dark, but lighting is so much more than that. It can transform colors, style, and how a room is perceived. The lighting choices that a person makes can make or break a design.
There is so much more to lighting than just the fixture that most people focus on, although that is just as important. Designers consider more than just the overall look of the fixture, they also consider the light output, the color of the light being emitted, and the size of the fixture compared to the space. With that being said there are normally multiple different types of lights within a space. There are those that serve a functional purpose, as well as those that serve a decorative purpose. The decorative light fixtures are most prominent and the styles of these tend to fluctuate more frequently. The recent styles of lighting that are most popular are anything with a matte finish, such as the matte black sconces pictured above. Another trend is over-sized pendant lighting. This adds drama to the space and really makes a statement!
Other fixtures that have been popular for quite some time are industrial light fixtures, but they are starting to lean towards a more refined and simple industrial look than those of past years. This adds interest to any space, creating a stylish yet understated look that is timeless. The geometric light fixtures also stem from this style, but are more modern in nature. Globe fixtures, in the form of pendants, lamps, and more are also gaining popularity for their simplicity.
As with anything, most trends will find their way into every facet of design. The most common being using natural and raw materials in spaces, which comes from society’s desire to be more environmentally friendly. Therefore, expect to see a lot of wicker, wood, and glass used in light fixtures. Each creates different style, but all of them have a feeling of sustainability!
All of these fixtures will be very prominent in design in the coming year and possibly after. These trendy fixtures help enhance every room and adds to each individual style. Did something catch your eye? Let us know!
December is the time to reflect upon the past year and look forward to the next. This is a popular time among design experts and professionals to think about the new trends that will be coming in the new year. A new year means fresh ideas and new designs. Most trends tend to fade within a year or two, while some can re-emerge after years of being dormant. In any case, this next year will be no different in terms of emerging and fading trends.
2019 will filled with a much more calming, natural color pallet. Some things that will be emerging are more neutral wood tones, meaning that the age of the bright cherry cabinetry has come to an end, for now….. Oak is even making a comeback, but not in the way that you are thinking! As far as color goes, the predictions have been leaning towards the warmer tones of the color spectrum.
White kitchens are at their peak of popularity, but they are slowly losing steam and while they will always be a classic some people are looking to break up all that bright, stark white. In the past this has been done by using contrasting countertops, backsplash, flooring, or wall color. This next year will welcome a growing trend of using neutral wood tones to bring some interest and texture into a space. This can be done by changing up the color of the cabinets, having some stand out and make a statement. In the photo to the right, the designer changed up the hood, sink base, and the floating shelves.
These wood tones are also gaining popularity on their own as well, with many people ditching the once popular cherry cabinetry in favor of something more natural and subtle. This color pallet is most likely stemming from the current interest in saving the environment, even though the wood stain that you chose will not help save the earth from global warming.
The color pallet is also shifting slightly in terms of tone. The colors are now moving towards the warmer end of the spectrum. Even the more neutral gray that has taken center stage in more recent years is shifting from cooler grays to warmer grays. Most people are probably wondering how long that trend will last, and while it has shifted slightly it seems to be sticking around for a bit longer. This warm, neutral will pair nicely with the subtle wood tones for an accent.
There will also be other colors taking center stage this year. Hopefully we will find less white and gray and more of these incorporated in interiors. Navy blue has been on the rise for quite some time and it seems to be no different in the coming year. Now it is being seen more in kitchen design, which can be seen as being at its peak in popularity by including it in something that is as semi-permanent as cabinetry. Hunter green, cavern clay, and living coral are all predicted by various color experts to be very popular colors this year. All of them tying back to nature in some way.
All things old do in fact become new again! However, this time there is a twist. Whenever someone thinks about oak the first thing they picture is the builder grade oak cabinets that went into every home in the 90’s. These are not those cabinets. Not only has it made a comeback, it has also gotten a makeover! The oak we all know and hate has a orange hue that works with very few color schemes. The new and improved oak has a much more subtle look to it! This helps the character and texture of the wood to stand out more.
Oak is also a wood that has become very versatile because it has a very nice texture that is most commonly used in more rustic/farmhouse kitchens, but has been seen lately in the contemporary market because it brings some interest to the clean, linear look of that particular style. Painted oak has also gained popularity because it is normally more cost effective than maple and has a more distinct look to it.
Black is becoming much more popular in interiors in a big way. It is being used with white for a dramatic contrast then paired with rustic, warm wood finishes in order to tone it down and make it feel more natural. This also reduces how dark it makes the space feel, which is often why so many fear its use in their spaces.
The best part about black is that there is no hue to it, just like white and gray, which makes it the perfect neutral. It can also be used many different ways in as much or as little as necessary. It can be used as the main color of the kitchen cabinetry or it can be used on the island as an accent. It can be used on the fixtures in the kitchen or bathroom to make them stand out. It can even be used as a decor accent in other areas of the home.
We have a lot to look forward to for the coming year! 2019 will be a year full of new and beautiful interior design. Colors are shifting to more warm and natural tones that mimic nature more. It is clear where our focus will be for the coming year. Aside from the aesthetics of design there will also be far more environmentally friendly design practices taking place as well.
Everyone wants their kitchen to be beautiful. After all, you don’t want to spend your hard earned money to create an ugly kitchen! However, in the journey to create this aesthetically pleasing space some homeowners forget about or sacrifice the functionality of their space.
A prime example of storage and organization in a kitchen would be the pantry. The pantry has many different forms now, including the freestanding pantry, built-in pantry, walk-in pantry, cabinet pantry, and the butler’s pantry, which is still called that even though the majority of us no longer have a butler in this day and age. Unfortunately, not all of us have the space for the gorgeous pantries above and some do not have room for a pantry at all! This is when we have to get creative with our storage solutions elsewhere!
In a kitchen with a limited amount of space for storage it is important to make the most of the space that you do have. This can be done by being creative with space that isn’t normally used, such as the wasted space underneath the cabinet. Or by making better use of one of the most difficult storage spaces in the kitchen; the corner. By using a corner drawer base you make the most out of that awkward corned by making it so much easier to access.
With all the advancements that we have today it is no wonder that our kitchen’s would follow suit. There are so many different things that have been added to kitchen design in order to help make things more user friendly and functional. Fillers and dead space can now be turned into spice pullouts in order to make that space usable. There are now inserts for drawers to better organize china and flatware, to get electronic devices off of the counter, to organize plastic containers, and to organize pots and pans.
In terms of kitchen storage and organization we have come a long way. What are some of your favorite ideas? Let us know!