The Easiest Way to Update Your Kitchen

Overall you’re happy with your kitchen - but it’s needs… something. Your designer tells you all it needs is a change of cabinet hardware and you like that idea. After all, it’s a difference without the hassle and time of a major remodel.   But be careful. If it sounds too easy, it usually is. That’s not to say it can’t be done.  It’s just that one of the trickiest parts of kitchen design is to coordinate the hardware with the rest of the room. Jump in without a plan and you could end up with a mess.  Here’s what to consider before you take anything apart. Old knobs and cup pulls are easily replaced with new ones. However C and D-shaped hardware, favored by Universal Design, comes in different widths; and this is one time when bigger is better. Unfortunately, you can’t replace a five-inch handle with a seven-inch without leaving a hole. Or suppose you find a handle shape you really love and want to use it throughout the kitchen. It may take two to three coordinating styles to address the different sizes and shapes of your cabinetry. Placing knobs or cup pulls on cabinets and drawers near the sink can be counterproductive. This is where your hands are most likely to be wet or dirty. If your handles are small, require grasping or have a squeeze mechanism, it takes more effort to get them open. If this type of hardware is already in place, take the opportunity to change the drawer and door fronts to install hardware that’s larger and easier to use. Finally, in order to...

The Kitchen Island – How It Defines The Busiest Room In The House

There was a time when “kitchen islands” consisted of sturdy tables set in the center of the room and… only in kitchens large enough to accommodate them. In the 1930s, Frank Lloyd Wright brought kitchen islands to suburban homes with his “open plan” living space. They have continued to evolve ever since. Currently, the island has literally become the hub of our homes for doing more tasks than just cooking. They’ve become the center for socialization. If you’re looking to modify an island already in place or add one to your kitchen, it’s best to work with a professional to draw up a floor plan. An island should have about three feet of space around it. If it’s too large, the kitchen becomes crowded. Too small and not only does it not look good, it may not fit in with the normal workflow. Bottom line, it shouldn’t be too close to doors or other countertops but you don’t want it to be standing off by itself. The next consideration is how you want to use it. Islands can be strictly functional by providing additional countertop space and storage. But as suggested above, islands are where people interact. While the cook is chopping tomatoes, he can talk to family about their day, help the kids do homework, and just show off a little as guests nibble on appetizers as dinner is prepared.  This brings up the question of how many people do you want to be able to sit around it?  And do you want one level or two? Take a look at our Projects to see what we can...

Bathroom Design Inspiration

“I don’t want my bathroom to look like everyone else’s.”  Find inspiration for a unique interior in unexpected ways. Possibly one of the reasons that you chose your home was its location. Consider integrating your surroundings into your bathroom.  It will make your space feel more expansive and will connect you with the outside world. If you live in an urban environment, choose metallic industrial tile or leave brick exposed on the walls. If you live near a beach, consider cabinetry painted in water tones and a custom wavy counter-top. If you love your backyard, a large glass wall with privacy glass, the coverage of plants and trees outside, or retractable shades can allow you to bathe at one with nature. You can also look inward instead by reflecting your family’s heritage in your bathroom. For example, Asian design features clean lines and simple architecture. Color schemes used in this type of space include black, beige, pale green, white, gray and red. A Scandinavian bathroom would appear minimalist with white and neutral colors. Focus on geometrical shapes and keep the wood cabinets natural. You can find design inspiration in piece of art that holds personal meaning for you and build your bathroom concept around it too. Just be aware that tubs and showers produce a lot of moisture and steam, which is a dangerous environment for matted pieces. It is better to opt for a decoration that doesn’t need to be framed like sculpture, painted canvas or plaster intaglios. Parisian bathroom style is particularly popular with a claw foot tub, a pedestal sink and colors that complement impressionist art...

Design a Green Kitchen

A new kitchen can be an opportunity for your whole family to adopt a “green” lifestyle. It’s economical as well as socially conscious to create a sustainable kitchen because they are inherently durable and minimize the exploitation of the Earth’s resources, you can also learn more about Boulden Brothers and other plumbing contractors and see how they’re able to conserve water in your kitchen plumbing, creating a greener kitchen. The following tips can make a big difference in your planned kitchen’s long-term sustainability: Re-facing cabinets uses less than a single tree’s worth of wood. Your existing cabinets also get reinforced so that they will have stronger, sturdier cupboards. It’s important to know that there are always safer and healthier choices when it comes to selecting your paints and varnishes for your cabinets, so be sure to ask. Consider recycled timber with nail holes, nicks, and other character marks for kitchen doors, benches, shelving, and cladding. Quartz, concrete, and Corian are produced without the mining resources of granite. Furthermore, they don’t require toxic sealants and have no fissures to trap bacteria. Keep on the lookout for recycled glass tiles made of discarded bottles for your decor. Appliances should have the Energy Star symbol to ensure they exceed current EPA guidelines for energy efficiency. Be sure your plumbing fixtures have the WaterSense label as well. Upgrade your faucet to be touch-free so that you minimize water waste with automatic shut off. Install a picture window, aia skylights, and reflective surfaces to cut down on the need for power. Dimmer switches can adjust the wattage of your lights and LED bulbs offer...