Can You Go Back?

The other day, before I left Kitsap Kitchen and Bath, my last official appointment was with a lovely young couple that purchased the home my late husband and I built almost thirty years ago. Here is a drawing of the lovely 5,000 square foot home.  Drawing of Gordone.jpg

I wonder how other people feel when they go into a home that you designed, or built or bought and then sold and moved on.  It was lovely that they were such a nice young couple and loved the house.  It was hard, as over the years, the former owners had made significant changes to the interior and exterior that were very different from my initial vision.  The new owners were trying to repair all the things that were left unattended for several years.  My heart went out to them, as so many things need work.

Thirty years later my taste has certainly changed with color choices and was glad even back then, other than a pick tub & toilet in the master (now yucky) I had stayed with classic and beautiful choices.

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This is the original exterior, but it is now light yellow with black trim, and the arches over the entry and the garage doors are now just a rectangle.  The architect was from California and good friend, but the arches and trim had to be repainted every year, as the V in the middle of the arch, opened the grain of the wood, so water got in the wood.  The lovely arch over the fireplace in the living room is gone and the antique Sheraton fireplace surround has disappeared that was above the master bedroom fireplace.  The trees are grown and beautiful!  There is a lot more landscaping that hides the front of the house a bit.

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This a photo from the living room looking into the dining room.  I had those two Captain’s chairs on the right for several years, but tired of them (still tired of them) and sold them ages ago. The columns are telling of the time it was designed and built, but classic lines are still lovely.  The new owners have had the floor refinished with exception of the entry where the last owner put black marble over the wood.  (yuck)  and the lighter color on the floor is much more up to date. I don’t have any photos of the kitchen, but it was a dream to work in, alone or with a party of people.

I would love to be the one redesigning their bathroom, but they did not contact me personally, so in the proper ethical and business since it is totally up to them.  But it does need to be updated, so I am glad they are taking it on.  I think it would be a very challenging, but overall fun project and would really add to the house.

How many of you have ventured back into a home you loved and what did you think about the changes?  Maybe as a design professional, it is harder for me to accept and love change?  How about you?

Can You Go Back?

Top 25 Renovating Mistakes

  1. Buying Cheap Materials

    “One of the biggest mistakes that people make when it comes to home renovation (is that) they try to be cheap when they buy materials. The bottom line is, you’re going to get what you pay for.” “If you’re going to do it, do it. If you can’t afford to do it, wait.”

    2. Inaccurate Measurements

    An inch or even sometimes a half an inch can make a difference. And if your dimensions are off and it’s not equal and symmetrical, you’re not going to get the full impact and effect that you want. If you’re not sure about how to measure or you can’t follow the directions, don’t hesitate at all to call somebody. Ask them to come over and take the measurement for you.

    3. Skipping the Prep Work

    Do it the right way, right away. You shouldn’t avoid your prep work. You want to take the time to do it right and right from the beginning.

    It’s a horrible, tedious process, and nobody likes it, but it saves so much time later on down the way. And that’s what you’re trying to do: save yourself money and time.

 

Top 25 Renovating Mistakes

63 Kitchen Design Ideas from Sunset

 

Time for an update? Pick your favorite style from our gallery of beautiful kitchen designs

 

Multi-Purpose Kitchen

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When Sunset editor-in-chief Irene Edwards set out to remodel her Victorian home, the goal was to balance style with function. Because her husband cooks for a living, this is the most used space in Edwards’ home. But the original configuration felt cramped, with a low ceiling and a breakfast room separated by French doors. The architect removed those doors and reconfigured the kitchen into three zones: a cooking area with a prep sink, a nook for everyday meals, and a larger sink area for cleanup. Removing the dropped ceiling revealed almost three extra feet of height—a feature showcased by adding shiplap ceiling finish, pendant lights, and a library-style ladder.

 

Natural Colors

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The Underwoods gutted their outdated kitchen, shifting it to a more central spot in the house. Formica and 1950s painted knotty pine gave way to modern raw-oak cabinetry and Caesarstone countertops; large-scale slatted-wood pendant lamps act as striking art elements.

Customize Cabinets

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“The kitchen is all about maximum function in minimum space,” says homeowner Grant Kirkpatrick. “Everything has to be able to store cleanly.” The alderwood cabinets have drawer pullouts and racks to pack away all utensils; pantry items and cleaning supplies are stashed in a more generous cabinet across the living room.

 

Moody Touches

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By eliminating a breakfast nook, Eva Kosmas Flores and her husband, Jeremy, opened up the kitchen and made room for the vintage Roper range they scored on Craigslist. “I like to think about all the food that’s been prepared on it over the years,” says Eva, who learned to cook at her parents’ Greek deli. “I hope that all the good food karma carries into what I cook on it too.” A contractor installed the Shaker-style cabinets and oak floors.

 

Portland Loft Kitchen

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When the kitchen is the highlight of a floor plan, tile is a statement of style. The textural glazed thin brick rises to the soffit and covers the range hood. This kitchen also features drawers instead of standard kitchen cabinets that often unreachable, wasted back corners.

 

On the Water

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The Bertrams, avid cooks, and entertainers went through their kitchen dish by dish to come up with the right division of space. Nebolon designed hanging racks for their favorite glassware and pots; the island includes custom spice drawers, a pullout chopping block, and shelves for cookbooks. The fog blue paint on the cabinets helps them blend in with the main living space.

 

Budget Makeover

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The Emericks removed all of the upper cabinetry, adding new native-fir open shelves and countertops. Cream-colored cabinets, brass hardware and light fixtures, and 
the farm sink give the cottage a farmhouse vibe. The back 
of the fireplace became an architectural frame for the stove, which the couple 
found at a garage sale.

Save to Splurge Kitchen

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Staying on budget involved a series of compromises and calculations. To save money in the kitchen the couple did without upper cabinetry, instead repurposing shelving from their previous home. And by paying less for a lightly dented refrigerator, they were able to pony up the cash for something else they wanted: “We splurged on a nice, quiet Bosch dishwasher,” says homeowner Anna Smith. “It’s worth it with kids.”

 

Smart Kitchen

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Designer Jessica McCarthy opened up the kitchen by swapping out the upper cabinets for white shelves against counter-to-ceiling subway tile. She brought warmth to the space through butcher-block countertops; a rust-colored rug; and wood, brass, cork, and copper accessories. The porcelain farmhouse sink and blue cabinets reference traditional country style.

 

Beach Cottage Kitchen

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Varying finishes give the kitchen and dining room character. “It’s like a math problem: You start with one thing and play off that,” homeowner Dana Marron says. A dark green La Cornue stove contrasts with light, modern oak cabinets; shiny metal chairs offset the rustic chipped-paint dining table. “The irony of having white floors is that you worry less about them. Scratches don’t matter, because that’s the character you’re going for in the end,” adds Marron.

 

Bright Assets

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The main attraction in the kitchen is the bright yellow stove, which the couple decided to buy during one of their first appliance-shopping dates. They chose a soothing blue Heath backsplash to complement the yellow and added a chalkboard for their “absurd lists of grocery items,” says Ellen Bennett. To save space, Casey Caplowe designed their kitchen pantry to fit underneath the staircase, which is wrapped in solid oak.

 

Splashed with Color

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The interior designer wanted more color in the kitchen than a typical backsplash would give, so she extended the tiles to the ceiling and onto the floor. The stunning result delineates the kitchen from the rest of the open space.  Open glass shelves along the rest of the wall get the most impact out of the tile.

 

Bold Kitchen

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Instead of replacing the unremarkable wood kitchen cabinets, the couple painted them charcoal and added black hardware. By painting the wall and window trim the same color, they put the focus on the floor tile. Moreover, deep charcoal acts as a neutral. Both warm and cool tones pair well with it.

The hexagonal tile makes the room. Two shades of gray relate the tile to the wall color. The blues add shock value. Hexagon 8 tiles in Original Blue, from about $20/sq.

Cupboard Free Kitchen

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Designed and built by the family, this vacation home was customized down to every detail. The kitchen features open shelving, so dishware serves as art. “You don’t end up having a lot of stuff just hidden away,” says homeowner Chad Robertson. “All the things you use on a daily basis are right there. And with so many of us running around, nothing can be too precious.”

 

Indoor/Outdoor Kitchen

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This modern cabin is full of natural materials and expanses of glass. The kitchen walls slide aside to access the 450-square-foot deck that includes a barbecue station, effectively doubling the room’s square footage. The ipe flooring flows from indoor to out, creating a cohesive look between the spaces. The refrigerator and pantry doors almost disappear into the walls.

Eco-Friendly Kitchen

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Though it has a similar foot­print to the prior kitchen (“low 8-foot ceilings, red cabinets, dismal,” Beall says), the new walk-through space feels bigger thanks to higher ceilings, glass-front cabinets, floating shelves, a pull-out pantry, and bright white surfaces. The recessed energy-efficient LED lights in the kitchen and family room certainly help as well.

 

Modern Meets Old-School

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One of the first things you notice about this San Francisco kitchen is the open space and clear countertops. While this family designated their home a technology-free space, the design and function of the kitchen certainly don’t suffer. Modern lines and electricity are present in the kitchen, the family opted for simple household products like manual appliances, stove-top coffee, and basic electronic appliances without an LED interface.

 

Cottage Kitchen

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Oversize windows and skylights invite in the sunshine. Walls are painted a light-bouncing white, while white ceramic subway tiles brighten the kitchen and baths.

For contrast, the wooden floors are stained with a custom mix of ebony and dark walnut shades; the high-gloss polyurethane top coat reflects even more light.

Get the look: Wall paint is Decorator’s White eggshell with semi-gloss trim throughout (benjaminmoore.com for stores) Kitchen tile is ceramic 3- by 6-inch in white K101 (daltile.com for stores)

Open Craftsman kitchen

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The ground floor of the once single-story house is now essentially one combined kitchen, dining area, living space, and home office, with bedrooms in an upstairs addition.

 

Dual-Family Kitchen

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The kitchen in this shared vacation cabin is a simple line of cabinets, counters, and stove along one wall of the main living space.

 

Heath-Tiled Kitchen

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Flush-mounted lights on the soffit and under the cabinets show off hand-tooled yellow Heath tiles on this kitchen wall. The soft gray walls and mushroom-colored concrete counters subtly complement the tile.

 

“Unfinished” Kitchen

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In designer Cisco Pinedo’s house, knickknacks are few and far between, which results in each item gaining a sense of importance and meaning. The kitchen counters are recycled granite, and the cupboards are made from unfinished wood. “If it’s a great material, let it be,” Cisco says.

 

Creative Renovation

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In this home renovation, a new island increased counter space and allows for a prep sink beyond the main farmhouse sink. The kitchen cabinet doors were removed: If a door’s closed, you have a tendency to forget things are there. To maintain the integrity of the house, the owners had the walls repaired with plaster, not drywall.

 

Casual Cabin Kitchen

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Thrifty choices in this cabin’s kitchen include a mix of open shelves and laminate cabinets.

 

Kitchen the Colors of Sea Glass

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This turquoise and white kitchen is inspired by the sea  and by the beautiful tumbled glass you can find along the shore.

Moroccan Bungalow Kitchen

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Paint and tile took this 1920’s kitchen from glum to glam. Pale green upper cabinets and backsplash tile set off the cool Hawaiian blue granite counters, the warm tones of the mahogany cabinets, and Dylan Gold’s reclaimed-wood island.

 

Remodeled Victorian Kitchen

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Colorful backsplash tiles contribute a mix of whimsy and history in this updated Victorian in San Francisco. The Iznik design (annsacks.com) is based on 16th-century Turkish originals. The kitchen also features eco-friendly cast-stone countertops and reclaimed wood floors and cabinets.

 

Kitchen Island for Socializing

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Centered on a sociable semicircular island, this kitchen has plenty of space for multiple chefs to work while guests sip and chat.

 

Kitchen in Plain Sight

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Featured in Sunset’s May 1966 issue, this award-winning La Mesa hillside home near San Diego was considered a model of indoor-outdoor living.  The renovated kitchen retains the original footprint minus the overhead cabinets that isolated it from the dining area.

 

Retro Ranch Kitchen

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Matthew and Jennifer Hibbard of Scottsdale, Arizona, did most of the work on their retro ranch themselves. Jennifer found the Silestone quartz countertop online, never seeing it in person. It arrived a perfect fit for this kitchen-dining area.

 

Open Kitchen Shelving

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Open shelves feel hospitable―guests can just grab wineglasses off the shelf―and force you to edit.

Try following this homeowner’s rule of thumb: “If you use it more than once a week, have it out. If you use it a few times a month, stick it in a cabinet. Once or twice a year? It belongs in the basement.”

 

Kitchen Storage Solution

 

If the kitchen lacks a proper pantry, get creative. The owners of this 700-square-foot bungalow mounted a wall rack to store their wine.

 

Innovative Kitchen

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This white kitchen is in one of three apartments in an innovative triplex. The top-floor unit shown here overlooks the park next door. Flat cabinets and sleek counters in the kitchen enhance the spacious feeling.

 

Sunny Kitchen Remodel

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Rich and Linda Peters wanted to preserve and enhance the architectural style of their 1929 San Mateo house while opening the kitchen to the outdoors.  They selected concrete counters, a farmhouse-style sink, and white wood cabinets.   A long center island with a butcher-block surface and deep overhangs is great for two-person cooking, prep work, and entertaining.

 

A Kitchen with Layers of Color

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The clean design of this blue and white kitchen is layered with pops of energetic color. The red drum pendant from Croft & Little illuminates the bamboo island top from Teragren. Glass-front cabinets provide a showcase for colorful pottery.

The bamboo-topped table on casters tucks under the island and can roll away for use throughout the house or outside. Mixing up the chair styles adds casual appeal.

 

Midcentury Kitchen

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The owners of this 1953 ranch wanted to strip the home back to its roots and open the interior to the surrounding yard.  New walnut veneers restore period charm to the original kitchen cabinets. Existing slate flooring was kept in place, and the interior of the concrete block walls was sandblasted to add texture.

The 1950s aesthetic was hardly limited to stainless steel and molded plastic. The use of wood, especially walnut and mahogany, was a main design feature of that era.

 

Warm Kitchen

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A modern farmhouse is what the designer had in mind when she remodeled her kitchen.  By removing the wall that closed off the room from the rest of the house, they gained 5 feet of living space and united the layout.  After opening up the kitchen, they devised a means of closing it off when needed. From the kitchen window, you can see goats and a big barn up the hill. That inspired the sliding barn door.”

 

Big kitchen

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When your home is less than 700 square feet, you have to pick your priorities. In this 1907 San Francisco cottage three cramped rooms made way for a spacious, light-filled kitchen with garden views.

 

Cool and Bright Kitchen

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This kitchen’s color palette robin’s egg blue walls, smoky lilac cabinets is like a muted Monet painting. Several paints and even the floor stain were custom-mixed. White field tile by B&W Tile keeps things light.

 

 

Kitchen Nook

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A built-in banquette opposite the central cooking station is a cozy family gathering spot for games and casual meals.

 

Eat-in Kitchen

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This eat-in kitchen opens to the rear porch through a glass door. Double-hung windows above the sink allow in air and light. The table legs are painted white to match the walls, ceiling, and cabinet trim. The flooring is reclaimed from old schoolhouses.

 

Jewel-Like Cabin Kitchen

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The open, well-lit kitchen is the central gathering spot in this house.  The appliance-free island was made from a stainless steel and butcher block workspace purchased at a restaurant-supply store, then covered on three sides with plywood.

 

Modern Boathouse Kitchen

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This boathouse anchored on a Seattle lake features bamboo-finished cabinets and ample natural light and ventilation.

 

Fresh, Colorful Kitchen

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White Shaker-style cabinet fronts are a bright foil for the vibrant glass-tile backsplash. New niches display cobalt bowls. A two-toned, two-tiered concrete counter pale green above and charcoal gray below adds sleek style to the work and serving spaces.

 

White Victorian kitchen

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Calacatta marble gives the kitchen island and counters a lustrous look.

It may be traditional, but it certainly isn’t stuffy. The remodel stayed true to the home’s period details and old-fashioned charm while infusing it with youthful, contemporary sophistication.

 

Revitalized Craftsman

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An unlikely blend of materials and salvaged goods finds visual balance in this kitchen. A painted tin ceiling, stainless steel counters, and blue glass tile mesh seamlessly.

 

Reunion ranch: Cookhouse

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The cabin’s cookhouse is where everyone gathers to eat and spend time together. The unique arrangement of this retreat allows for plenty of space for group activities.

 

Kitchen Bar

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A gap in the L-shaped counter (to the right of the chairs here) created a better flow from this family kitchen to the breakfast nook, and out to the garden.

 

Prefab Kitchen

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The open kitchen (with white Ikea cabinetry) makes the scant square footage in this modern prefab seem expansive.

 

Eco-Conscious Kitchen

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Smooth slim concrete counters from Concreteworks edge the kitchen’s perimeter. A thick concrete slab on the island gets its texture and golden flecks of color from recycled rice hulls.

Light-Filled Kitchen Makeover

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Two decisions in this remodel were key: replacing a window at one end of the gallery-like space with a glass Dutch door and wrapping three sides of the room with a counter. The counter passes in front of the Dutch door, becoming a breakfast bar; light coming through the door washes the floor and walls.

 

Summer Retreat Kitchen

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The kitchen appears bigger than its 15-by-15 footprint thanks to its spare coastal palette of white paint (Benjamin Moore “Super White”), bamboo countertops (Teragren), reclaimed barn wood flooring (Black’s Farmwood) and blue/cream ceramics (Soulé Studio).

Basket pendant lamps by Beach House Style highlight the kitchen island (Woodenbridge, Inc.).

 

Tahoe Retreat Kitchen

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A mix of redwood, stainless steel Electrolux appliances, and slate floors makes for a contemporary cabin feel in this expansive home. A band of picture windows by Pella creates a vivid transparent backsplash.

 

Playful farmhouse kitchen

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Formerly a slender galley, this kitchen is now an open, multipurpose space with an adjacent hallway that serves as the drop zone for backpacks, mail, and shoes.

An antique barrister card catalog serves as an ingenious storage system for miscellaneous household items.

An 1887 tavern table serves as the island in this family-friendly kitchen. The 1920s utility sink is from a salvage yard.

 

Flexible Galley Kitchen

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Seattle architect  opened this 250-square-foot galley-style kitchen to adjacent rooms and used subtle level changes to define each area. The flexible plan makes the space ideal for breakfast for 1 or a dinner party for 10.

 

DIY Concrete Countertop

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The kitchen in this Alaska cabin was rebuilt from the bare studs. Vertical storage keeps cooking tools handy. The owners poured the concrete counter themselves.

Airy Kitchen-Living Space

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Floor-to-ceiling French doors open off the kitchen onto a small deck. A wood table and benches mixed with metal dining chairs create a relaxed look. The breakfast bay acts as a daylight-catcher that brightens the rest of the kitchen. A marble backsplash and wood display shelf make the kitchen handsome enough to entertain in.

 

Red Kitchen Island

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A coat of brick-red paint makes the island the star of this kitchen. For a sophisticated look, try pairing one red object with neutral tones. Here, dark-wood surfaces and stainless steel appliances do the trick.

 

Light-Infused Kitchen

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Built in 1869, this home needed an updated kitchen and more light in interior rooms.  Owner and architect replaced a 1920s shed-roof addition at the back with a slightly larger addition that allowed the kitchen to move out of the historic part of the house.

She turned the new kitchen into a large light box with a translucent roof made of aluminum-and-fiberglass Kalwall panels. Widened openings between the major rooms further brighten the interior.

 

A Cook’s Sophisticated Kitchen

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Maple cabinets in a natural finish and countertops in a light green concrete give this kitchen an earthy but sophisticated feeling.

 

Sleek, Open Kitchen

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Bright lights, large rectangular openings, and a simple palette of green, blue, white, and stainless steel create a clean look and a handsome foil for the curvilinear barstools.

Open shelves around the sink and range hold smaller objects, such as dishes, serving bowls, and glasses—items the couple uses every day.

 

Wide-Open Kitchen

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Big curved beams create a wide-open kitchen/family room. Clerestory windows bounce the light off the ceiling, brightening the space.

 

Updated Victorian Kitchen

 

In the kitchen, a Carrara marble counter and backsplash and black-and-white checkered flooring form graphic backdrops for this refurbished Victorian.

63 Kitchen Design Ideas from Sunset

10 Ways to Go for Color in the Bath

With bold hues, attention-grabbing tile, and creative details, the bathroom can be the most fun room in the house. Get inspired by these 10 spaces that aren’t afraid of piling on the color and pattern. Which do you like best?
10 Ways to Go for Color in the Bath

25 Backsplash Ideas

Here are some great backsplash ideas from Dwell Magazine.  Enjoy!
25 Backsplash Ideas For Your Kitchen Renovation
An interesting backsplash can take your kitchen from average to extraordinary.

From eye-catching tilework to impressive slabs of marble, this collection of some of our favorite kitchen backsplashes will help inspire your next remodel.

25 Backsplash Ideas For Your Kitchen Renovation - Photo 1 of 25 - In the kitchen, copper-colored stainless steel tiles from TileBar create a glowing backsplash. The cabinetry is by IKEA, the countertop is Caesarstone, and the induction cooktop is by Bosch.
In the kitchen, copper-colored stainless steel tiles from TileBar create a glowing backsplash. The cabinetry is by IKEA, the countertop is Caesarstone, and the induction cooktop is by Bosch.

25 Backsplash Ideas For Your Kitchen Renovation - Photo 2 of 25 - The stools are from Crate & Barrel. The Hobsons chose a geometric-patterned glass tile backsplash by Island Stone. Induction cooktop and oven are by Bosch.

The stools are from Crate & Barrel. The Hobsons chose a geometric-patterned glass tile backsplash by Island Stone. Induction cooktop and oven are by Bosch.

25 Backsplash Ideas For Your Kitchen Renovation - Photo 3 of 25 - In total, the renovation was completed for around $35,000.
25 Backsplash Ideas For Your Kitchen Renovation - Photo 4 of 25 - The showstopping material elements are the Borghini honed marble countertop and backsplash by Ann Sacks. Hasami porcelain vessels line the open shelving.

The showstopping material elements are the Borghini honed marble countertop and backsplash by Ann Sacks. Hasami porcelain vessels line the open shelving.

25 Backsplash Ideas For Your Kitchen Renovation - Photo 5 of 25 - In the bathroom, a custom ceramic backsplash designed by Meredith and Sample joins an iroko-wood tub created by their students a the University of Toronto.
In the bathroom, a custom ceramic backsplash designed by Meredith and Sample joins an iroko-wood tub created by their students a the University of Toronto.

25 Backsplash Ideas For Your Kitchen Renovation - Photo 6 of 25 - Sasha samples berries at the island while Wes, perched on the counter next to Deborah, clutches the whipped cream—similar in color to the backsplash, made of traditional Moroccan tiles and available through Emory & Cie.
 Moroccan tiles and available through Emory & Cie.
25 Backsplash Ideas For Your Kitchen Renovation - Photo 7 of 25 - Backsplash from Porcelain and More
Backsplash from Porcelain and More

25 Backsplash Ideas For Your Kitchen Renovation - Photo 8 of 25 - Butler's pantry with herringbone backsplash
 Butler’s pantry with herringbone backsplash
25 Backsplash Ideas For Your Kitchen Renovation - Photo 9 of 25 - Heath Ceramics hex tile backsplash and counter with copper edge
 Heath Ceramics hex tile backsplash and counter with copper edge
25 Backsplash Ideas For Your Kitchen Renovation - Photo 10 of 25 - We had the stone counter and backsplash  cut from the same slab of Vermont marble, achieving a continuous graphic pattern.Stone counter and backsplash cut from the same slab of Vermont marble, achieving a continuous graphic pattern.
25 Backsplash Ideas For Your Kitchen Renovation - Photo 11 of 25 - The metal backsplash and drawer pulls were fabricated by 12th Avenue Iron; the cooktop is by Miele.
 The metal backsplash and drawer pulls were fabricated by 12th Avenue Iron; the cooktop is by Miele.
25 Backsplash Ideas For Your Kitchen Renovation - Photo 12 of 25 - In this California home, a red mosaic tiled backsplash balances the lower white marble counter.

In this California home, a red mosaic tiled backsplash balances the lower white marble counter.

25 Backsplash Ideas For Your Kitchen Renovation - Photo 13 of 25 - Rendered in sharp blue, the timeless motif of Greek Key is used as this kitchen's backsplash.
Rendered in sharp blue, the timeless motif of Greek Key is used as this kitchen’s backsplash.

25 Backsplash Ideas For Your Kitchen Renovation - Photo 14 of 25 - Kitchen Sink with J Schatz Platinum Formations Tile Backsplash and Brutal Coffeemaker
Kitchen Sink with J Schatz Platinum Formations Tile Backsplash and Brutal Coffeemaker
25 Backsplash Ideas For Your Kitchen Renovation - Photo 15 of 25 - The pendants over the kitchen island are from Cisco Home; the bar chairs are by Studio One for Lost & Found. The patterned concrete tile floor is from Mission Tile West, as is the mirrored backsplash (above), which was originally meant for the living room fireplace. "I think we over-ordered," Lena recalls. "So I said, ‘Let’s do a disco backsplash.’ It just needs to make you smile, and I think it does."
The pendants over the kitchen island are from Cisco Home; the bar chairs are by Studio One for Lost & Found. The patterned concrete tile floor is from Mission Tile West, as is the mirrored backsplash (above), which was originally meant for the living room fireplace.

25 Backsplash Ideas For Your Kitchen Renovation - Photo 16 of 25 - Fresh white kitchen with warm wood wrapped island, black cabinet pulls and Dwell patterns Heath tile backsplash .
Fresh white kitchen with warm wood wrapped island, black cabinet pulls and Dwell patterns Heath tile backsplash.

25 Backsplash Ideas For Your Kitchen Renovation - Photo 17 of 25 - A backsplash laid out in a herringbone pattern adds a subtle layer of texture while pendant lighting adds depth.
A backsplash laid out in a herringbone pattern adds a subtle layer of texture while pendant lighting adds depth.

25 Backsplash Ideas For Your Kitchen Renovation - Photo 18 of 25 - Fireclay Tile in a classic subway pattern goes beyond the standard 18" H backsplash raising the ceiling visually.
Fireclay Tile in a classic subway pattern goes beyond the standard 18″ H backsplash raising the ceiling visually.

25 Backsplash Ideas For Your Kitchen Renovation - Photo 19 of 25 - Detail of natural stone backsplash by Decorative Materials Inc. High gloss white cabinets by Vogo.
Detail of natural stone backsplash by Decorative Materials Inc. High gloss white cabinets by Vogo.

25 Backsplash Ideas For Your Kitchen Renovation - Photo 20 of 25 - To complement the white-washed custom cabinetry in her kitchen, architect Julie Salles Schaffer has designed a tile backsplash to resemble "melting butter in a white pan". Daltile arranged her two-color AutoCAD design—white and off-white—onto a mesh backing for a small fee. To soften the edges of the cabinets’ drawers and doors, Schaffer requested radial edging.<br>
To complement the white-washed custom cabinetry in her kitchen, the architect designed a tile backsplash to resemble “melting butter in a white pan”. Daltile arranged the two-color AutoCAD design—white and off-white—onto a mesh backing for a small fee. To soften the edges of the cabinets’ drawers and doors, Schaffer requested radial edging.

25 Backsplash Ideas For Your Kitchen Renovation - Photo 21 of 25 - Hand-made Moroccan tile backsplash by Mosaic House with contrasting niche; custom kitchen cabinets designed by MIRIAM BIOLEK Interior Design with Bendheim's mouth-blown glass inserts.
Hand-made Moroccan tile backsplash by Mosaic House with contrasting niche; custom kitchen cabinets with Bendheim’s mouth-blown glass inserts.
25 Backsplash Ideas For Your Kitchen Renovation - Photo 22 of 25 - In this urban townhouse, a Zodiaq® London Sky countertop wraps the wall behind it to become the backsplash, providing a polished backdrop for design details and vignettes. Its muted color complements dark wood cabinets and rich, metallic accents.
tIn this urban townhouse, a Zodiaq® London Sky countertop wraps the wall behind it to become the backsplash, providing a polished backdrop for design details and vignettes. Its muted color complements dark wood cabinets and rich, metallic accents.

25 Backsplash Ideas For Your Kitchen Renovation - Photo 23 of 25 - The Ferry Building shop displays seasonal goods as well as items from some of Heath’s most popular collections. The top shelf here features serve bowls, platters, modern cups, bud vases, and a pitcher from this year’s Summer line in aqua/zest and ocean pacific. Heath worked with chef Alice Waters and designer Christina Kim to create the Chez Panisse line, named after the famed Berkeley restaurant, which is seen here on the second shelf: side bowls, mugs, and café bowls in Jicama, Cardoon, and Forrest. The backsplash is Heath dual glaze tile.

  The top shelf here features serve bowls, platters, modern cups, bud vases, and a pitcher from this year’s Summer line in aqua/zest and ocean pacific. he backsplash is Heath dual glaze tile.
25 Backsplash Ideas For Your Kitchen Renovation - Photo 24 of 25 - Owners Kirsten and Lloyd chose a muted mosaic tile from Modwalls to cover the backsplash and back wall of the kitchen. New cork floors from House + Earth give a nice feel underfoot. Perforated chrome lights from Rejuvenation under the bar soffit enhance the mid-century vibe.
 Owners chose a muted mosaic tile from Modwalls to cover the backsplash and back wall of the kitchen. New cork floors from House + Earth give a nice feel underfoot. Perforated chrome lights from Rejuvenation under the bar soffit enhance the mid-century vibe.
25 Backsplash Ideas For Your Kitchen Renovation - Photo 25 of 25 -
25 Backsplash Ideas

Design Basics to Help You Think Through a New Master Bath

These standard dimensions and layout tips can help you plan the deluxe bathroom of your dreams

Spacious master bathrooms have become one of the most considered spaces in home design. These often luxurious settings provide a refuge from hectic schedules and a place for pampering. In these spaces, we can be assured privacy in an increasingly public world and stamp our unique identities in their finishes.

By their nature, they allow a wide variation in creative design solutions and material choices. There are a few basic elements that each bathroom requires, and then there are the amenities that make it special to the owner. Let’s take a look at standard dimensions of essential fixtures and then investigate the options for other elements.

Design Basics to Help You Think Through a New Master Bath

Conceal Your TV

Conceal Your TV

7 Design Tips For a Chef-Worthy Kitchen

This a great article from Dwell Magazine.

If you have serious culinary chops and take pride in preparing meals that wow your family and friends, keep these tips in mind when designing or renovating your kitchen.

If boiling eggs is not your forte, and you’d much rather eat out than experiment with new recipes, then a basic kitchen may be all you need. But if you’re serious about cooking and love nothing more than spending hours trying out new dishes that’ll impress guests at your next dinner party, then here are some elements to incorporate for a professional-grade kitchen.

1. The Magic Triangle

When planning the layout for your kitchen, refer to the “kitchen work triangle” with the cooking area, sink, and refrigerator at its three points. Though modern kitchens have evolved, and it is sometimes geometrically impossible to abide by this configuration (for example, in a single wall kitchen), the triangle is a good concept to keep in mind when designing to maximize functionality and ease of movement.

What they did not talk about is the new triangle, where the refrigerator is off to the side and a little out of the way.  There needs to be space across from it or beside it to put food when cooking, but it does not absolutely need to be part of the triangle anymore.  I love the cooktop part of my triangle, as I am working there, more than in the refrigerator. (unless I am really hungry)

7 Design Tips For a Chef-Worthy Kitchen - Photo 1 of 7 -

 

2. Two Sinks

Install two sinks so that you can clean fruits and vegetables in one while washing or stacking used pots and pans in the other. Ensure that the sink is deep and the faucets are high, so you don’t have to worry about water splashing onto the countertop as you strain your pasta or wash your dishes.

I have a little different take on this.  My utility room is adjacent to my kitchen, so I added a large stainless sink in there if I need a place for pots and pans.  If I am entertaining, I do not want my guests to see dirty pans in my kitchen, so this works great! 

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3. Plenty of Durable Work Counters

As a home chef, you’ll be engaged in many food preparation tasks, so think about how to maximize counter space. Surface counters made of quartz, laminates, and solid surfaces are good choices for their durability, and antibacterial and anti-staining properties. Such surfaces are ideal for areas where you’ll do the most peeling, chopping, and blending.

Quartz is the new popular countertop and it is great, but if you select a plain one, be prepared to constantly be cleaning it, as it shows every spot.  I love a good granite that hides a little.  

7 Design Tips For a Chef-Worthy Kitchen - Photo 3 of 7 -

4. Built-In Appliances

Integrated appliances are your best bet for freeing up space, hiding unsightly electrical cords, and getting a clean, streamlined look. Wherever possible, choose built-in ovens, dishwashers, coffee machines, microwaves, and pullout fridges. This will help free up more counter space and make your kitchen look much more inviting.

I love making my dishwasher and refrigerator look like cabinets.  Now there are drawer refrigerators and freezers.  I hide my microwave and toaster oven in my pantry.  Clean is the new look!  

5. Good Lighting

A bright kitchen is not only healthier for your eyes, it makes preparing food safer and will probably put you in a cheerier mood. Locate your kitchen close to windows or incorporate skylights to increase the amount of natural light it receives. When choosing light fixtures, consider ambient lights, task lights, and accent lights. Use down lights to prevent glare and shadows, strip lighting under cabinets, and wide-rimmed pendant lights above the bar or island counter.

In my last home I had windows under the cabinets that looked out to the garden.  It had a wonderful effect.  We added another window when we remodeled last summer to take full advantage of our water view. 

7 Design Tips For a Chef-Worthy Kitchen - Photo 5 of 7 -

6. Ample and Intelligent Storage

Easy and intuitive access to a large pantry, spice racks, pots and pans, utensils, dinnerware, and cutlery can make all the difference when you’re preparing a feast for a large group. Consider storage systems which hold all your kitchen basics neatly and beautifully like a secret armoire.

I personally think that although this is “cool”, there are a lot better use of space, than hanging your utensils and knives.  One knife block on the counter is quite practical. 

7 Design Tips For a Chef-Worthy Kitchen - Photo 6 of 7 - On/Off Monoblock by Boffi

7. Wine Storage Facilities

Good food isn’t complete without great wine, so consider including wine storage facilities.  We love ours and use it every day.  

7 Design Tips For a Chef-Worthy Kitchen - Photo 7 of 7 - Perlick wine cooler

 

7 Design Tips For a Chef-Worthy Kitchen

Luxury Kitchens Sell the Home: Design Trends

 January 21, 2018 by 

Recently some 60,000+ people gathered in Orlando, FL at the Kitchen and Bath Industry Show (KBIS) hosted by the National Kitchen and Bath Association. It’s where companies that supply the kitchen and bath trade showcase their wares to interior designers, retailers and dealers, architects, builders, and remodelers. KBIS is part of Design and Construction Week with the NAHB International Builders’ Show.

Kitchens take center stage at KBIS and have been a focus of my research over the past year as well. I participated in a series of AuthLux day-long workshops on luxury kitchen and bath design sponsored by ROHL, the kitchen and bath luxury fixtures company, and part of the Fortune Brands family of companies.

An excerpted hour-long version of that full-day event was presented at this year’s KBIS, but I thought to share more insights from an AuthLux Summit panel discussion about designing the luxury kitchen of tomorrow today, hosted by Dallas-based interior designer Denise MaGaha.

The kitchen unlocks the value of a home

The kitchen is now the showpiece of the modern home. “The ultimate design statement of the home starts in the kitchen,” said MaGaha as she introduced the discussion focused on the three essential design elements for the modern kitchen – Cabinetry, Appliances and Water Appliances. “With the trend toward open-floor plans, the kitchen sets the stage for all the other design decisions in the home.”

The kitchen’s importance to the home owner is second to none. In today’s open-floor home designs, the kitchen takes center stage as the place where the family’s lifestyle starts. Kitchens are the most important selling point in home buyers’ decision, according to Realtor.com, and homes listed with “luxury kitchens” sell faster and command a higher selling price than similar-sized homes in the same ZIP code.

It’s no wonder then that interior designers find the greatest demand for their services in remodeling kitchens. Some 80% of home remodeling projects take place in the kitchen, according to the National Association of Home Builder’s Remodeling Market Index survey.

Here are some highlights from the panel discussion:

Upscale cabinets must be as beautiful on the inside as on the outside

Cabinets are the grounding element in the luxury kitchen, as all the other elements are mounted on them or placed within them. What’s more, they set the design style for the kitchen. “Today we see transitional and modern style with strong architectural references increasingly popular,” explained Jason Artus of Rutt HandCrafted Cabinetry, based in Lancaster County, PA.

“That’s also why we find European style frameless-constructed cabinets growing in demand,” Artus said. Frameless cabinets allow for additional storage with wider drawers and pullouts because they do not have a face frame attached to the front of the cabinet box and no center stile coming down in the middle of two cabinet doors. Frameless cabinets give a sleek, simple aesthetic that provide easier access to the items inside.

Another trend Artus sees in luxury cabinet choices is more drawers, instead of hinged door cabinets. “Additional drawers in the kitchen results in more accessible storage and organization, which is a top priority for clients to be sure that each and every kitchen item has its place.” And once those drawers or cabinets are opened, lights need to turn on automatically to guide the way.

And for the luxury home owner, the outside is just as important as the inside when it comes to cabinets. “It is expected that today’s upscale cabinetry look as beautiful on the interior as it does on the exterior,” Artus said, as he points to growing interest within the design community in white oak on cabinet interiors for “those looking for a lighter option to pair with darker exterior finishes.”

Luxury kitchens mean chef-quality appliances

While cabinetry provides the modern kitchen’s form, the appliances provide its function. And today that function is going more high-tech as smart technology is added into the mix. Selecting appliance brands that serve their function in style and are ahead of the curve in innovation is key.

Juanita Galliford, of Thermador, part of BSH Home Appliances Corporation, shared that her company has been at the forefront of kitchen innovation since its founding in 1916. It invented the wall oven and cooktop combination and was the first to introduce stainless steel. And in 1948 it brought the first professional-quality and performance ranges to the home owner, followed by the first self-cleaning oven in the 60s. When it comes to kitchen appliance innovation, she said, “Thermador has led while other brands have followed.”

On the cutting edge of cooking technology today is the steam/convection oven, Galliford explained. “The steam oven is one of the healthiest ways to cook a meal. Traditional ovens pull moisture out of the food as it cooks, while in a steam oven food is cooked in its own juices, enhancing flavor and retaining nutrients,” she said and told how it is also super-fast, allowing a 14 lb. turkey to cook in only 90 minutes.

And in the modern luxury kitchen, the refrigerator has taken on a new role as the “culinary preservation center,” noted Galliford. “Refrigerators are no longer just about preservation. Today’s homeowner wants personalization allowing them to customize the line up of cold storage combinations that give them exactly the cold storage solutions they desire.” So a modular concept in cold storage is required allowing the homeowner to pick fresh food store, freezer and wine storage combinations right for their needs.

From sink and faucet to water appliance

And perhaps the most overlooked, yet most critical function in the kitchen is the faucet and sink, which ROHL has redefined as the water appliance. “The most used appliance in the kitchen is actually the faucet/sink combination,” said Greg Rohl. “A family of four uses their water appliance 20-30 times a day. We encourage designers to think about reallocating budgets towards this most heavily used ‘appliance’ allowing clients to spend more for better quality and more attractive solutions.”

To discover the water appliance faucets, fixtures and fittings that meet 21st century needs in quality, style and function, ROHL canvases the world to find products that meet the luxury homeowners’ needs, like the innovative Pull-Out Kitchen Faucet, which founder Ken Rohl discovered in Europe in 1983 and which became the flagship product for the ROHL brand.

Through close collaborations with its worldwide partners, ROHL finds it critical to maintain authenticity in time-honored material and craft while adapting to modern needs. “We work closely with on-staff engineers and industrial designers to incorporate low-lead material requirements, meet California water-use and flow restrictions and IAPMO and EPA WaterSense criteria without compromise,” Rohl noted.

Designing the luxury kitchen of tomorrow today

Designing the kitchen of tomorrow today requires bringing many separate components provided by a variety of suppliers with unique expertise together into a cohesive kitchen package that combines beauty and function, efficiency and style. “Traditional kitchen configurations with upper and lower cabinets are being replaced by full-on kitchen islands – grounded by larger sinks, faucets and accompanying accessories,” Rohl explained. “Today, and in the future, the multi-function sink/faucet combination will continue to be the mainstay of the kitchen, flanked by the cooking and cold storage appliances, and installed with beautiful, architectural cabinetry that defines the kitchen’s style.”

The kitchen’s place of presence in the home is without doubt. Yet its form and function continues to evolve with technology, product and design innovations. Perhaps Christopher Peacock, a high-end cabinetry designer in Norwalk, CT expressed the evolution of the modern kitchen best: “It’s almost not worth calling it a kitchen anymore—it’s a living room that you can cook in.”

Luxury Kitchens Sell the Home: Design Trends

Beached Surprise

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You just never know what might land on your waterfront.  This last week we had a decoration arrive.

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It just floated up and adorns our waterfront. I have seen a lot of things in the last fifteen years, but this is the closest and admittedly the “biggest”.  One year there were two huge diesel engines on an adjacent property, but they were small by comparison to this beauty.

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So when I posted photos on Facebook, friends suggested that I collect it and use as a coffee table.  What they did not grasp is that it would have to be a coffee table in the Land of Giants, as this puppy would not fit in my house.  So here is a photo to give you an idea of it’s immense size!

drifting

Got to love living on the beach!  Should I call the Coast Guard??

Beached Surprise