Posts Tagged 'Jim Marrazzo'

Great Kitchen Ideas For Small Kitchens – Jim Marrazzo

Jim Marrazzo, Designer at Kitchen Views in Newton, MA

There are many ideas for small kitchens. The main thing to do is to improve the use of space in a small area. Try to cut down on unused material in the room and get rid of unused items. Think about replacing the 1970’s microwave that takes up half your counter, and try to replace old appliances with smaller more efficient units. You want to organize your cabinets and clear up the clutter. These things can help you create the illusion of a more spacious kitchen. Removing a few items and organizing your cabinets will make your kitchen more open and friendly.

In the 1970’s, homemakers were proud to display their brand new microwave ovens. The question is if your kitchen is still in the 1970’s.

Today, the focus in kitchen design is placed on maximizing the use of your space, no matter what the size. Small kitchens can work incredibly well if storage is well-organized and work patterns are thought out carefully by a professional designer. You want the space to work for you, and never against you. If you’re feeling like your small kitchen is working against you, you can contact a professional kitchen designer to help you find the best ways to make use of your space.

Even a small kitchen can look and work great!

Even a small kitchen can look and work great!

Jim Marrazzo
Kitchen Views at National Lumber

15 Needham St, Newton, MA 02461
617-244-8020 x 118 phone
617-969-7426  fax
jmarrazzo@kitchenviews.com
www.kitchenviews.com

Best Ways to Clean Kitchen Cabinets – Jim Marrazzo

Jim Marrazzo, Designer at Kitchen Views in Newton, MA
Clients often ask how to take care of their new cabinetry. It’s a good question, and there are several things to consider. Wood reacts to environmental changes, such as moisture, temperature and light. The tips below should help you to preserve your wooden cabinetry as well as any other wood products you may have in your home.Humidity Control is Important with Wood Products The wood products in cabinets, based on fine furniture industry standards, are conditioned to 5%-8% moisture content at the factory. The woodworking industry recommends that room environments in the comfort zone of 70 degrees F be maintained at a relative humidity range of 25%-55% for wood products.

As the relative humidity in a room increases, wood will gain moisture and expand. Wood loses moisture and contracts as relative humidity goes down in a home environment. This natural expansion and contraction of hardwoods can at times become visible at the joints of doors and frame components. Finish stress lines at joints are more visible on painted finishes. This natural characteristic of wood can be expected in a normal home conditioned throughout the year between the 25-55% relative humidity range and is not considered a defect.

The more a home’s relative humidity is allowed to exceed 55% the more its wood products will expand to the point of wood failure at extreme moisture levels. Wood failure possibilities include splits, cracks and wood joint expansion and separation. Inset door expansion becomes noticeable with high humidity conditions. If significant expansion occurs, the doors will rub against the cabinet frame as they are opened and closed. Low relative humidity environments can cause wood to shrink and create cracks and related noticeable characteristics. Moisture content expansion and contraction of wood is a natural occurrence and is not a defect and therefore is not warranted. Moisture related problems can be minimized by maintaining relative humidity in the 25%-55% range for the home’s comfort zone of 70 degrees F.

NOTE: Sunlight’s Effect on Wood & Wood Finishes. Wood and wood finishes tend to gradually mellow when exposed to light. Excessive direct sunlight can have a more dramatic effect.

Best Ways to Clean Wood Kitchen Cabinets

DO NOT use abrasive cleansers or pads on cabinet surfaces! They can cause scratches. On laminate cabinetry, scratches may be irreparable! Keep cabinet surfaces dry and free from standing liquids.

For cabinets with stained finishes: Use a soft cloth and a mild soapy water solution to remove the dirt & grease. Rinse immediately with a clean cloth and dry with a clean soft cloth, using light pressure. Avoid vigorous rubbing, as this tends to raise glossy spots, marring the original effect. Never use strong soaps, detergents or liquid wax cleaners with dirt cutting agents on wood finishes. I suggest a mild mixture two cups of water and two teaspoons of liquid dish detergent in a spray bottle.

With opaque painted and matte finishes: NEVER use waxes on opaque or matte finishes! Simply wipe them clean using a soft cloth with a mild soapy water solution. Rinse immediately after with a clean damp cloth and dry with a soft cloth. CAUTION: Avoid vigorous rubbing as this tends to raise glossy spots, marring the original effect.

Best Ways to Clean Other Types of Kitchen Cabinets

To clean stainless steel cabinets, use a stainless steel cleaner. Be sure to follow the directions that accompany the cleaner. Never use acids, solvents or abrasive cleaners that would damage the surface and overall appearance.

For plastic laminate cabinets, clean with a mild soapy water solution, rinse and wipe dry using a soft cloth. If necessary, you can remove stubborn stains with a grease-cutting agent. Clean afterward with a mild soapy water solution, rinse and wipe dry.

For cabinets with metallic laminates or insert panels: Do not use abrasive cleaners, scouring pads, powders, sandpaper or steel wool, as these products will permanently damage the surface and appearance! Acids, solvents, alkaline or ammonia-based cleaners or other liquids (other than mild soap and water) may etch, oxidize or otherwise damage the surface and appearance.

To remove fingerprints, oil or sugar-based stains: Use a mild (diluted) liquid dish detergent and a soft damp cotton cloth. Clean in the direction of the metal grain, pattern or texture; avoid harsh rubbing. Rinse and remove any residual moisture with a clean, dry cotton cloth.

This is only a basic guide. If you have any questions or problems, contact your kitchen specialist. One of our Kitchen Views team will be happy to speak with you about any cabinetry questions you may have.

Jim Marrazzo
Kitchen Views at National Lumber

15 Needham St, Newton, MA 02461
617-244-8020 x 118 phone
617-969-7426  fax
jmarrazzo@kitchenviews.com
www.kitchenviews.com

Jim Marrazzo: Indoor and Kitchen Herb Gardens

Jim Marrazzo, Designer at Kitchen Views in Newton, MA

“Bring the Outdoors In!” by Jim Marrazzo

Spice up your kitchen with fresh herbs! A good way to bring the outdoors into your kitchen is with fresh herbs. When planning a kitchen design, trying to incorporate a herb garden can be as simple as window sill pots…

Indoor Herb Garden - Window Sill Pots Indoor Herb Garden - Window Herb Garden Shelves

…or even built into cabinetry!

Indoor Kitchen Herb Garden - built into cabinets

Fresh herbs can bring color and freshness to your kitchen. Most kitchens have plenty of natural light to plan your fresh herb garden, and even if you don’t, you can use plant lights (as shown with the purple lights above) to grow herbs and enjoy fresh herbs all year long!

Indoor Herb Garden

Speak with your kitchen designer to help you plan a space for your own indoor herb garden!

Jim Marrazzo
Kitchen Views at National Lumber

15 Needham St, Newton, MA 02461
617-244-8020 x 118 phone
617-969-7426  fax
jmarrazzo@kitchenviews.com
www.kitchenviews.com

The Heart of the Home – Multi-Functional Kitchen Space

Jim Marrazzo, Designer at Kitchen Views in Newton, MA

It is becoming more and more popular to have the kitchen be the center of household activities. You may find that this is the perfect place for you to incorporate a desk or an office space. Do you like to look for recipes on your computer? Want to have the children nearby as they do their homework? The kitchen may be the perfect place for you to have a desk for your computer and for kids to do homework. Or maybe you just want a place to write or pay bills.

Custom Kitchen with Office Area

Custom Kitchen with Office Area

First, decide what activities you want to do in your office area. Find a place away from the main traffic flow of your kitchen. Think about sitting space, especially if you need more than one seat. Lighting is very important. Even if you are able to place the desk beneath a window, you will need to have general lighting and more importantly task lighting. You’ll also need plenty of conveniently placed power outlets if you want a complete office setup with a computer, printer, calculator, etc.

Cabinetry companies are now providing more options with specialized cabinets for holding our various electronic gadgets while they are charging. Some shallow cabinets can create a usable nook on the end of other cabinetry, such as the Mini Message Center from Schrock.

Schrock Mini Message Center Cabinet at Kitchen Views, Warwick, RI

Schrock Mini Message Center Cabinet

The ideal height for a desk and office cabinets is about 30 inches from the ground, which then allows wall cabinets to be lower for easy access. Most cabinet companies make file cabinets to match your kitchen cabinets, a must in your office kitchen. Plan a convenient space for supplies like paper, pens, pencils, etc. Perhaps you want a bookshelf, too. Have a place to put all your office needs so you can keep this space tidy and organized.

If available space is limited, make the desk area versatile for multiple functions. Put in glass doors for stemware display space and you can turn your daytime office into an elegant bar by night.

Easy Access Desk in the Kitchen

Easy Access Desk in the Kitchen

The experienced designers on the Kitchen Views team can help you to make the most of your available space. When everything is conveniently organized, tasks are easier and can even feel effortless. Let’s make your kitchen the true heart of your home by making it multi-functional.

Jim Marrazzo
Kitchen Views at National Lumber

15 Needham St, Newton, MA 02461
617-244-8020 x 118 phone
617-969-7426  fax
jmarrazzo@kitchenviews.com
www.kitchenviews.com

Jim Marrazzo: Design Your Kitchen to Fit Your Needs

Jim Marrazzo, Designer at Kitchen Views in Newton, MA

As a Professional Kitchen Designer, I like to discuss with my clients how they use their kitchen. In my own kitchen I do most of the cooking, so I set up my kitchen to fit my needs. For instance, I have a favorite old spice rack that I keep to the right of the stove — at my fingertips. That works great for me, but might not necessarily work for you.

The design stage is the time to think about how you use your kitchen. It costs you nothing to make changes at this stage of the game, so ask as many questions as possible and change as many things as needed during this phase. Once construction has begun, or worse yet after the cabinets are installed, it can be very costly to make changes at that point.

So when you meet with a kitchen designer, talk to them about how you like your kitchen set-up. Think about things like the locations of spices, pots, pans, dishes, silverware, recycling, trash, etc. Don’t be afraid to say that you need advice on making your new kitchen work better than your old kitchen — that’s what a designer specializes in doing. But the designer needs to know your priorities and preferences. Other things to think about: a place for mail, and a place to plug in cell phones to charge out of the way. Write it all down before you meet with your designer so they can better serve your needs in your kitchen.

Another helpful thing to do is visualization. I tell my clients to picture themselves at their new stove and to think about what they would like to have at their fingertips. How do you want pots, pans and covers organized? Or, when at the sink, do you have a drawer for dish towels? Do you want the dishwasher on the right or the left? Where are dishes, silverware and glasses stored once they are washed?

Visualizing your kitchen from floorplan to rendering to finished product

At Kitchen Views, our designers will provide you with detailed, computer-generated renderings of the plans. Take home the initial design and walk around the space with the plans. Visualize how the new layout will work for daily tasks. Was there something you forgot to mention to the designer? If you realize that you have questions, or are certain that a change is needed, mark up your plans and go over it again with your designer.

With the right guidance, your kitchen will be designed to meet your needs. Depending on the space available, you might not fit everything you want into your space. But, you won’t have to second guess yourself after your kitchen is completed, because you’ll know that you went through it all with a designer that understood your needs and you made the best choices.

Jim Marrazzo
Kitchen Views at National Lumber

15 Needham St, Newton, MA 02461
617-244-8020 x 118 phone
617-969-7426  fax
jmarrazzo@kitchenviews.com

Jim Marrazzo: Visualize Your Kitchen

Jim Marrazzo, Kitchen Views at National Lumber, Newton, MA

Jim Marrazzo, Kitchen Views at National Lumber, Newton, MA

With a degree in Mechanical Engineering, Jim has been in the building industry for nearly 25 years, concentrating on kitchen design for the past 15. Prior to joining the team at Kitchen Views at National Lumber in Newton, Jim worked as a kitchen installer. His knowledge and experience ensures that form will, indeed, meet function, and fit exactly in the available space.

Here are links to Jim’s profile and portfolio.

Visualizing Your Kitchen

As a Professional Kitchen Designer, I realize the importance of visualizing your new kitchen. The design program that I use is called 20/20. It is a great tool to help my clients visualize their new kitchen from floor plans to prospective.

See below 20/20 floor plan and prospective along with the finished kitchen.

Another great tool I use is pictures of kitchens I have designed in the past. This helps to show my client’s different molding details, height and depth of cabinets, and also helps them visualize door style and colors.

See pictures below:

Using these techniques, along with your magazine cutout and your thoughts, I can help you visualize your new kitchen.

Jim Marrazzo
Kitchen Views at National Lumber

15 Needham St. Newton, MA 02461
617-244-8020 x 118 phone
617-969-7426  fax
jmarrazzo@kitchenviews.com


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