The Future Of Kitchens – Will They Be Open Or Closed?

We know some things in kitchens never change. Appliances may be sleeker, materials improved and color palettes may be broader. But let’s face it, the kitchen continues to be the heart of the home where most of the hard work takes place. Probably the biggest change we’ve seen over the years is to open the kitchen up to the rest of the house. And for good reason… After all, who wants to be isolated from company or the rest of the family while preparing food? Now the question is whether or not open kitchens are here to stay. According to Sam Cochran of Architectural Digest, “Kitchens will continue to be the gathering spaces, with dining nooks and multipurpose work surfaces where you can both roll your dough or type on your laptop. But it’s no longer a universal truth that a dream kitchen must be an open kitchen. “ In fact, many high-end homeowners are adding a second kitchen to serve as a working kitchen. It’s especially popular with those who entertain a lot. Second kitchens or “backstage workhorse kitchens” allow the “social” kitchen to serve as the gathering space.  This way the kitchen continues to be the place to hang out without getting in the way of food preparation. For those who have the space, two kitchens provide room for unhindered food preparation while maintaining the social kitchen we’ve come to...

Great Kitchen Cabinet Design Hacks

When building your dream kitchen, first consider your storage needs, kitchen size and shape, and your family’s personal style. Then, keep the following cabinet design hacks in mind: Craft an eclectic look by combining a variety of cabinets such as natural wood, gray and white. Different cabinet sizes and door styles create depth in the room. With a two-toned kitchen, paint the inside shelves of the upper kitchen cabinets to match the cabinets under your counter-top. This contrast will create a cohesive space. Combine cabinets and open shelving to make the most of a small kitchen. Also use sliding doors to help your small kitchen feel less congested. Consider lining only one wall with cabinets. This should provide enough storage while keeping the rest of the room open and uncluttered. If you have a dark wood floor, use light colored cabinets and counter-tops to avoid the kitchen looking too dreary. Choose cabinets that have a red tint to add color to the room while still giving it a natural feel. Contrast glass cabinet doors with solid black cabinets to make a bold statement. White cabinets will reflect natural light and brighten up the space but be sure to spice up bland white cabinets by adding texture. For more storage in your kitchen, install shallow cabinets or modify the inside of the cabinet doors to stash thin items like condiments and paper products. If you plan on entertaining guests, wrap your cabinets around a corner and have the lower set double as a bar. Plan ahead for easy access by installing a cabinet directly above the dishwasher to make it...

Kitchen Flip

Don’t be afraid to tackle big kitchen renovations! This couple flipped the kitchen and a family room! The key is thinking through what you need and hiring the right designers and contractors to make it happen. Cornerstone can help make your living space your dream...

Latest Trends in Kitchen Pantries

New homes are being built with pantries once again and existing homes are being renovated to include one. Why? As open floor plans merge living rooms with kitchen spaces, kitchen counters must be kept clean and minimal, yet food still needs to be stored and prepped somewhere. For the budget conscious, a wall of cabinets tucked away in a corner nook with a fold-out work surface is a better storage solution than a walk-in pantry. Also consider a pull-out pantry to replace a broom closet. The key is to use all available floor-to-ceiling space. Designers prefer to hide small kitchen appliances like kettles and mixers. If you can afford a butler’s pantry, make pantry cupboards deep for all appliances. Cover beverage coolers with wooden panels. Trade old pantry cabinet doors for doors that hold jars, pans or utensils. Store your canisters or containers with the same shape and design on open shelving to look more organized. Install cubbies to house water cooler bottles or items bought in bulk. Labeled baskets and bins are a great way to contain your housewares with a touch of style while keeping your investment to a minimum. Customize the cabinetry of the pantry space to create a dedicated work zone that keeps all items related to a specific task (like a breakfast station or a baking center) in one contained area. LED task lighting affixed to cabinets is essential. Pantries with vintage-inspired features soften minimalist, modern kitchens. Try mixing raw wood with painted white cabinets or adding a barn door to change the look of the pantry while making it more accessible. The pantry...

Blend Kitchen Styles

The kitchen is often the connecting space between the dining room and the living room. Even with an open floor plan, you don’t have to limit yourself to one style. Mixing elements in the kitchen can create a cohesive flow in the entire home while incorporating every style that you love. In fact, the current trend is to mix rather than match. Add traditional touches by copying moulding details from other rooms in the kitchen (like on an island leg or around the windows) or showcasing antique glassware and china in a custom hutch with glass cabinetry. To incorporate modern elements, choose sleek, flat cabinets in neutral colors. Use handles and pulls that are not too fussy. Bring in traditional granite for the countertops, but choose a matte finish instead of polished, and have the granite honed. Look for new and unusual colors like blue and burgundy to contemporize your décor. Go for green or beige to make it more traditional. Black appliances can update a country kitchen without clashing. Just be sure to add a farmhouse sink and use plenty of wood accents around the appliances. Switch out the faucet to update the look of your kitchen without a big investment. Feel free to go for a terrifically traditional faucet in your contemporary kitchen but opt for an understated finish to keep the visual peace. Make your kitchen more masculine by adding bulkier elements such as a bronze range hood or a stone backsplash. Period lighting fixtures and vibrant Persian rugs bring some vintage flair to the mix. Choose the unexpected, like a chalkboard for one of your...

Cabinetry Throughout Your Home

Custom cabinets are not just for kitchens anymore! They can provide a polished look and efficient storage in any room.  You can choose to keep the cabinetry consistent with the kitchen or mix complementary styles in each space.  Since open floor plans are on trend, dining rooms are often an extension of the kitchen. Use cabinets with glass panels in the dining room to display fine china and collectibles. Create a buffet by joining several cabinets together or use frameless cabinets for a floating buffet. Matching cabinetry to your dining room set adds a refined touch.  Consider installing a wet bar in your living area for entertaining. A mix of open shelving and cabinetry is best. Large cabinets can store anything from ice buckets to beer kegs, and glass racks keep all types of glassware handy. Cabinet doors can be used to cover the wine cooler and microwave for a flawless profile. Cabinets can help control the clutter in your home office, too. Add a custom bookshelf or build in a desk to finish the space. The playroom is another space that can benefit from the neat appearance of built-in cabinets. Floor to ceiling cabinets are not only stylish, but are best for optimizing wall space. Adding drawers, shelving and baskets make for easy toy access and cleanup. Since adults keep their “toys” outside, similar cabinets can also keep supplies and tools neat and tidy in woodshops and garages. Old-fashioned entertainment hutches are bulky and often do not accommodate large screen TVs and updated electronics. Build a state-of-the-art entertainment center in your family room with custom cabinetry instead. Be...