Archive for the 'Designer Spotlight' Category

Kitchen Views Wins Best of Houzz 2017

Kitchen Views in Warwick, RI has won “Best of Design” on Houzz, the leading platform for home remodeling and design. Kitchen Views was chosen by the more than 40 million monthly unique users that compromise the Houzz community from more than one million active home building, remodeling, and design industry professionals.

Private Residence - Pawtucket, RI - Kitchen

This Pawtucket, RI kitchen designed by Lisa Zompa has been saved to over 5,000 ideabooks on Houzz

The Best of Houzz award helps homeowners identify popular and top-rated home professionals in every metro area featured on Houzz. The Kitchen Views at National portfolio includes some of the most popular images on Houzz 2016. Kitchen Views also maintains an active presence on the platform and answers questions from the millions of worldwide users who may wish to duplicate the popular style seen in the photos.

Private Residence - Pawtucket, RI - Kitchen

Lisa Zompa, designer at Kitchen Views Warwick, has over 12 years of experience in kitchen and bathroom design. Lisa has an interior design degree and joined Kitchen Views in early 2010 to serve the Rhode Island area. Lisa says “to be honored by Houzz for a second time is a great compliment. The Pawtucket kitchen was designed a few years ago so it is really nice to know that my designs appeal to a wide range of people and that this design has stood the test of time.”

Private Residence - Bristol, RI Kitchen and Bathroom

Lisa Zompa in a kitchen she designed for a home in Bristol, RI

Kitchen Views is proud to offer exceptional customer service, talented designers, exquisite showrooms, and quality products. For unlimited options, Kitchen Views offers multiple lines of custom cabinetry, decorative hardware, and stunning countertops.  Whether you want a traditional, contemporary, or “green” design, you will find it at Kitchen Views.

Vice President of Industry Marketing for Houzz, Liza Hausman, says “we’re so pleased to award Best of Houzz 2017 to this incredible group of talented and customer-focused professionals like Kitchen Views. Kitchen Views was singled out for recognition by our community of homeowners and design enthusiasts for help to turn their home improvement dreams into reality.”

Click here to visit Kitchen Views’ Houzz profile and see the popular and beautiful work of Lisa and Kitchen Views. Kitchen Views has six unique and stunning showrooms across New England.  Meet with our talented designers to be inspired in the planning and delighted in the results.

Brandy Souza has been promoted to General Manager of Kitchen Views

NATIONAL LUMBER PROMOTES FROM WITHIN

Brandy Souza has been promoted to General Manager of Kitchen Views

Brandy Souza

Mansfield, MA – March 3, 2014 – Continuing a tradition of promoting from within the company, National Lumber has proudly announced the promotion of Brandy Souza to General Manager of Kitchen Views, their cabinetry and design division. Souza will report directly to company President Manny Pina. 

Brandy began her career interning for Paul Brent, a world renowned seaside architect and artist. After her internship she went to school and worked for a general contractor, Rex Spencer, where she drew plans and managed residential projects. She loves working with materials that remind her of beach vacations, both Miami exciting and Cape Cod relaxing. She draws from her ability to design a kitchen to meet specific needs of her clients and bring their dream kitchen to life. She combines her technical expertise with a fine eye for design and a commitment to customer satisfaction.

Brandy Souza has been with Kitchen Views since 2005, starting as a designer in National Lumber’s New Bedford location. She has consistently shown strong leadership and a determined attitude to improve every situation with tact and graciousness. Her amazing design acumen is demonstrated in her work creating Kitchen Views’ lovely and comprehensive Warwick showroom. Most recently Brandy designed stunning updates for the flagship Kitchen Views showroom at the Mansfield headquarters. Brandy is expected to continue Kitchen Views’ promise of exceptional customer service, leading by example.  Attending Design and Construction Week, the combined 2014 IBS and KBIS show in Las Vegas, Brandy was recently commended by clients for her delightful hospitality and expert guidance through the KBIS portion of the show.

A sought after expert for her design and materials expertise, Brandy has been interviewed and quoted in articles for Boston Home Magazine, New England Home Magazine, Rhode Island Monthly’s Annual Home Design issue and others. Brandy enjoys sharing her expertise through articles posted on the Kitchen Views blog.  With readers from around the United States, and many followers in England, homeowners are drawn to Kitchen Views for the product knowledge and design insight provided. Her posting on design trends for 2014 was picked up on Twitter by several industry sources.

KBIS 2014 Items of Note from Brandy Souza

Brandy Souza of Kitchen Views

I enjoyed attending Design and Construction Week February 3–6, the combined 2014 IBS and KBIS show in Las Vegas, with some of our top customers. It was a terrific opportunity to show them the latest products and trends, plus enjoy the fine food and hospitality of Las Vegas.

Style trend to note – most of the displays show flat or recessed panel doors. Raised panel is no longer in demand.

Omega display at 2014 KBIS of TURILLA cabinetry

Omega display at 2014 KBIS of TURILLA cabinetry

I want to mention that Omega now has stainless steel inset doors. They are inset into a wood frame which would prevent the doors from sticking during high humidity levels like wood doors.

Omega display at 2014 KBIS of CALDERA cabinetry with some flip-up doors.

Omega display at 2014 KBIS of CALDERA cabinetry with some flip-up doors.

We also checked out the flip-up door. It has a mechanical device so that when a button is pressed, the flip-up door automatically closes. This is great for shorter people who can’t close the flip-up door once it is open as the handle is too high.

Masterbrands SOHO Thermofoil Woodgrain Silt and Custom Aluminum Framed Doors

Masterbrands SOHO Thermofoil Woodgrain Silt and Custom Aluminum Framed Doors

Our time at the show flew by quickly. Since there is so much to see, it helps to have a plan or at least a list of top things to see. If you’re a builder interested in attending next year, you may want to consider going for an entire week so that you can enjoy all that Las Vegas has to offer, and spend maximum time on the show floor.  Until then, or for homeowners looking for inspiration, we hope that you’ll visit one of our Kitchen Views showrooms to see our cabinetry vignettes that display a wide range of styles.

Contact Kitchen Views at 1-508-DESIGNS (337-4467) to arrange a personal consultation with a designer who will guide your design journey to a new kitchen you will enjoy for years to come.

Brandy L. Souza
Assistant General Manager
Kitchen Views at National Lumber
120 Welby Rd, New Bedford, MA 02745
Office: 508-990-8020 x3163
Fax: 508-742-1498
bsouza@kitchenviews.com

Keep the Wiggle Room In Your Remodeling Budget

Keep the wiggle room in your remodeling budget

Do you know what vital part of a kitchen remodeling plan is often overlooked? People try to do without consulting an experienced design professional. It’s fun to watch experts on television making everything come out perfect in an hour, and you can get some great ideas. But all the televisions shows and online research can’t take the place of a trained kitchen design professional.

You figure out a budget based on the most you think you can afford. But when your finances don’t offer a lot of wiggle room for unexpected developments, working with an experienced designer will make a huge difference in the outcome. When you start opening walls to work on the plumbing or electrical, you might be surprised by what you discover. Even if your favorite home remodeling show includes problems found behind the walls, somehow many people think “That won’t happen with my house.” You’ll save yourself a lot of headaches and expense by having experienced guidance. Find someone who has the ability to anticipate possible obstacles and the know-how to work on reevaluating your budget to overcome the problems. Such a designer will prove to be an invaluable resource.

Today’s economy, although improving, still has a majority of homeowners in a conservative spending mindset. Luxury and wish items take a backseat to the must-haves. Our fondness for home remodeling television shows and online videos has also raised our expectations of what we “must” have in a new kitchen. Also, people are putting more thought and planning into the overall sustainability of the new design. One way that I try to stretch my client’s budget is to recommend cabinetry that isn’t painted or highly customized. Veering away from items such as appliance cabinets and appliances that take matching panels may save a substantial amount of money.

As an experienced designer, I find creative ways to include all the necessities and sometimes even a wish item. The best piece of advice I give my clients is to never be afraid to like what you like. Your kitchen should meet your needs and reflect your style so you enjoy it for years to come.

Lee Turner, Designer

Kitchen Views at National Lumber

Newton, MA

Good Chemistry and the Fine Art of Cooking

This article was the featured cover story from the Summer 2009 issue of Kitchen Views Magazine.

“Sweet and Savory” by Chad Carlberg

Walk up the back porch and into the home of Ingrid and John Molnar and you will discover why they are both smiling with pride—it’s their kitchen. Yet this cooking couple deserves bragging rights, having spent over a decade living with an ordinary kitchen whose extraordinarily bad design made their shared joy of cooking an endless labor of love.

“I’m a baker and John’s more of a cook,” Ingrid reveals.

Quickly, John quips, “I’m an artist. She’s more of a chemist.” They laugh as if congratulating themselves for having grown so comfortable with one another that their conversations roll like an old act that never tires. It’s hard to imagine that they would have had any difficulty in designing and renovating a kitchen. But mix a baker and a cook, an Italian and a German, and a dash of marriage, and the resulting pastiche is a recipe for living with an outdated kitchen long past its expiration date.

John Molnar cooking in the old kitchen

John Molnar cooking in the old kitchen

“I wanted a microwave that wasn’t on the counter and wasn’t so high that the kids would have trouble using it,” says Ingrid, now mother of high school-aged twin girls. “I also needed a vertical drawer for cutting boards and cookie sheets—”

“—And I had to have a stove with good control that could get hot fast,” John adds. “This induction cooktop was the way to go. We have no gas in this house so we had to get clever. But when we researched it we were sold. This thing boils water in ninety seconds.”

Their individual must-have list goes on and on, and they revel in how well they each recall their concoction for the perfect kitchen.

Outside of the Molnar residence, the ingredients are almost always a little different, yet the indecision and anxiety about “pulling the trigger” is shared by couples everywhere. Every one of them is searching for a sign about the next step. The Molnars were fortunate to find theirs in the form of a Kitchen Views designer from Berlin, MA named Diane Hersey.

John whips up lunch as he speaks, a simple Pasta Puttanesca recipe he picked up from his maternal grandfather. He doesn’t mention it, but is delighted to show off the speed and efficacy of his new cooktop stove.

“Diane was just what we needed. Because my wife and I are very good in the kitchen. We work together all the time. But we envisioned different spaces because we like different things.”

Ingrid adds that Diane was a superb listener, and was able to take in a lot of information to help them create the kitchen they had always wanted. “It’s a wonderful process,” Diane explains. “People always know what they want. They just need to be guided with the right sort of questions, and become active in a dialog that is not all that familiar to them.”

It is clear that Diane is fluent in the language of design. Her work is stunning, but the aesthetic of her creations is only a partial tribute. For even in the span of a lunchtime visit, an equal balance of Ingrid’s and John’s individual personalities is evident in the kitchen’s design. It is both slick and precise, earthy and relaxed. It is whimsical and practical, and it works beautifully.

Their contemporary kitchen with high-gloss wine colored cabinetry by UltraCraft is accompanied by touches of glass, aluminum and stainless steel. The cabinetry in the two-level island is a bird’s eye maple look-alike. Countertops on the periphery and the island are both engineered stone. The island’s cool blue gray echoes the kitchen’s stainless steel, while the warmer tans found in the peripheral counters build a connection between their immediate surroundings and the wooden beams and hardwood throughout the house.

John using the induction cooktop in the new kitchen

John using the induction cooktop in the new kitchen

“That’s Diane,” Ingrid says plainly. “I look around and I can see so much of each of us in here, and she made it work.”

John continues, “When we were researching kitchens we wanted something unique. We kept getting these people selling us their line… Or this medieval custom millwork. She was the first person who worked to understand that we weren’t like most people and that we wanted something different.” Ingrid adds that in addition to listening, Diane was masterful in creating a kitchen whose workflow intuited their every move. “Excuse me, John. Can I get in there?” she says playfully, recalling their daily dance in a tight, galley kitchen. “The whole thing just flows so well now.”

John lights up, recalling those days when a bad kitchen was made adequate through the goodwill of the cooks who worked in it. Rather than turning wistful, however, he chuckles at his new found fortune—the pasta’s already done.

From the Molnar’s kitchen emerge two beautiful open rooms, both late additions in the renovation process, each responses to careful design choices in the kitchen space. For the first time this day, the husband and wife are quiet, save for the clang of silverware on porcelain bowls. The afternoon sunlight has found its way into the house and rests like a tired hound beside the wood stove.

“That was delicious.” Ingrid breaks the silence, swiping the dishes from the counter and loading them into the dishwasher in one move. After several hours talking chemistry and the art of designing the “perfect kitchen,” it is the finality of a quick and simple meal made from scratch that best punctuates a story many years in the making. And like a satisfying meal, it was indeed worth the wait.

For more on this story, see this video documenting the Molnar’s kitchen design journey. For more stories from Kitchen Views’ design magazines, visit kitchenviews.com/magazine.

Kitchen Views at National Lumber
25 Central St, Berlin, MA
www.kitchenviews.com

Great Testimonial for Designer Amy Mood!

Amy Mood, Kitchen Views at National Lumber, Mansfield, MA

Amy Mood, Kitchen Views at National Lumber, Mansfield, MA

We would like to share this customer testimonial that we just received for kitchen designer Amy Mood from a homeowner in Mansfield, MA:

“I just want to let you know that we started working with Amy in September regarding remodeling our kitchen and she was terrific from day one to just last week when this project was finally done.

She was helpful during the selection of the cabinets and countertops. And we had been to another place in Plymouth prior that was just horrendous. It was a breath of fresh air to work with Amy. She was helpful and friendly all the time. She responded to all calls and emails promptly and understood the stress we were going through with this project.

I work in the service industry and know that people tend to just write letters when they have complaints and not when they are happy. I wanted to make sure someone knew how great she was at her job and how happy we were to be able to work with her. We would recommend her to anyone! Thanks for your time!”

Cool Cabinet Options Lead to Happy Meals

This article is from Kitchen Views Magazine’s Premiere issue, Fall 2008:

Mother and children preparing Thanksgiving dinner in home kitchen

“Cool Cabinet Options Lead to Happy Meals” with Brandy Souza

A kitchen that works around your family’s needs can make mealtime easier, which means the chicken won’t burn while you’re looking for the pot holders.

“Having an organized kitchen isn’t as hard as it may seem,” says designer Brandy Souza. “Just think of your cabinets as the foundation – everything builds on them. With the right cabinet in the right place, you move around the kitchen effortlessly.”

With today’s choices in sizes, configurations, storage solutions, materials and price points, you can make your kitchen work for you.

“Do you need a snack cabinet for the kids, or a pet cabinet to keep the kibble out of sight? A 5’2″ cook might prefer a lower island, while someone taller might want dishwasher drawers on either side of the sink. Now is the time to choose options that will make life easier,” says this family-savvy planner and mom of two toddlers.

Since budget is part of any cabinet discussion, Brandy recommends asking yourself how often you plan to make over your kitchen. If your answer to that question is ‘never again,’ choose a timeless design that won’t soon look outdated.

You’ll also need to decide between stock, custom and semi-custom cabinetry. With custom you can create any size, style or shape. “If we can draw it, they can build it,” Brandy says.

Semi-custom is not quite as flexible, but the choices are still plentiful. Stock cabinetry offers fewer options, but they are truly affordable.

“Don’t forget to think about visibility. If you have a deep cabinet you’ll want to be able to see what’s in the back to avoid turning groceries into science experiments,” Brandy warns. “Rollout trays are a great way to accomplish that, or check out the many pantry accessories that are now standard in most cabinet lines.”

For her own kitchen, Brandy has her dream cabinetry but compromised with Formica countertops while her children are small. “That way I don’t have to worry about Play-Doh and Kool-Aid. As soon as they’re older, I get my granite,” she says with a wink.


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