Posts Tagged 'kitchen storage solutions'

Making the Case For A Tiny Kitchen

With the growing popularity of “tiny houses” with their own television shows, many people are thinking about how downsizing can free them for enjoying activities other than cleaning a regular size home. Whether you have a small condo that needs better space planning to make the best use of every inch, or find that your regular size kitchen is in chaos, careful planning can improve your everyday life.

One of our favorite contributors to the Kitchen Views blog recently retired, but her wisdom regarding good kitchen design is timeless. So we are sharing again her perspective on making the most of limited space.

“Making the Case for a Tiny Kitchen” by Pam Kuliesis
Originally published on November 26, 2013

Tiny kitchen 2020 layout by Pam Kuliesis

Tiny kitchen 2020 layout by Pam Kuliesis

After turning a corner in life, I find myself living with a teeny, tiny kitchen. It’s a U-shape space. The working triangle is about 9 feet total, no more than 3 feet between the sink and the range to the left and the sink and the refrigerator to the right and just about 3 feet between the range and refrigerator across from each other. I can stand in the center of the room and reach all three without moving my feet. I pretty much don’t even have to lean. Very tight.

At first I couldn’t imagine being able to create anything in this “Easy Bake” kitchen that would be worth serving. But, a girl’s gotta eat, and take-out gets old pretty quick.

Once I started putting stuff away I was amazed at just how much storage this little kitchen had. And then I started cooking. Everything I needed was within arm’s length. Prep time was so much faster, not having to schlep across the room for the pepper mill that, in my old kitchen, I would leave way over by the sink. Also, I’m much neater. I don’t have the luxury of moving around the kitchen leaving a messy trail behind me. I clean as I go, making the final clean up a breeze!

There are so many great kitchen storage options available from all of the quality cabinetry brands we sell. Stacked wall cabinets maximize every vertical inch. Carefully planned base cabinet configurations and storage accessories make the best use of every nook and cranny.

Kitchen Views designers have the knowledge and the tools to create great kitchens in any space, big and small. Our designers are pros and the views are yours

Kitchen Views at National Lumber
71 Maple St, Mansfield, MA 02048
(508) 339-8020
www.kitchenviews.com

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Storage Solutions That Work for You

kitchen-vignette-top-hinged-upper-cabinets-400.jpg

Storage Solutions That Work for You!

Every year, cabinet companies entice us with new storage ideas:  sliding vegetable bins, spice pullouts, top-hinged wall cabinets, specialty cabinets for bathrooms, base cabinets with compartments or a drawer in the kick space. Open shelving is very popular recently on home renovation shows. All of them are designed to make your cabinets more accessible and convenient for you. 

On top of that, storage container makers offer a myriad of boxes, baskets, bins in all kinds of materials — wood, plastic, natural woven materials, and more. There are so many choices, but often it’s difficult to find storage solutions that work for you in your unique situation. How many of us have spent money on storage items that don’t actually work for us in our daily routine? I know that I have tried a lot of different ways to organize my home, but if you can’t get your family to use them, it’s just a waste of time and money.

pull-out-wood-shelves-in-regular-base-cabinet.jpg

Pull-Out Wood Shelves in Regular Base Cabinet

When deciding on the storage solutions best for you within cabinets, some people are concerned that these handy gadgets actually reduce the amount of storage area in your cabinet. For example, imagine that you can stack a lot of boxes into a cabinet to fill every square inch, but will you actually be able to find what you want when you need it? One of the most popular storage solutions are pull-out shelves that you can fit into your cabinets. One caution: some people try to use these pull-out shelves with short tray sides as though they are drawers. These are meant for larger items that won’t accidentally fall off the side or back when you pull it out. Installing these in a base cabinet may mean that fewer of those imagined boxes will fit within the cabinet, but since you can pull out the shelf to get all the way to the items at the back, they actually work better for you. There are several types of these pull-out shelves; just a couple are shown here. It’s important to weigh the true convenience of finding what you need, against the desire for maximum space for your items.

unusually-shaped-pull-out-shelves-for-corner-base-cabinet-400.jpg

Unusually Shaped Pull-Out Shelves for Corner Base Cabinet

Our design showrooms are designed to feature many great storage ideas. The pictures in this article are of kitchen vignettes at our Mansfield showroom, so if you’re in the area, stop by and investigate them for yourself. As you plan for your new kitchen, think about your most difficult pieces of your kitchen storage puzzle, such as a large mixer for baking. Tell your kitchen designer about items like this, and about how you currently use your storage. Be sure to read our article entitled, Hidden Treasures with 7 Design Gems, in this PDF of one of our past magazines, which shows timeless cabinetry storage solution for that large mixer and much more.   You could take pictures of your current storage shortcomings and bring them to your meeting. As you consider what you need for storage, think about how often you use various items in the course of your everyday food prep. For example, is this something you use daily or just for holidays or special occasions?

What’s one of the biggest storage challenges our designers run into? That’s plastic food storage containers and their tops. Putting them up into a wall cabinet often results in an eventual avalanche.  The solution? A big, wide drawer set aside specifically for them.  No matter how messy it gets, you can still find the matching tops and bottoms. But our designers can also suggest divider elements that you might like to add. If this picture of a drawer with movable posts confuses you, ask one of our designers to show you how it can be used.

specialty-drawer-with-divider-posts-400

Specialty Drawer with Divider Posts

So, come to one of our showrooms [link to showrooms page], bring your awkward items or photos of problem areas that you need a better storage solution to accommodate, and find out how our designers can develop a plan that works for you in your real life, not just in theory.

Kitchen Views at National Lumber
www.kitchenviews.com

Technology to Transform Our Lives at KBIS 2015

Brandy Souza of Kitchen Views

The KBIS show of 2015 was filled with plenty of brands we know and love. All our favorite brands have clearly embraced new technology and used it to make our lives easier. The one take away from this year’s Kitchen and Bath show was that technology is king. Here are my notes from the KBIS 2015 show that demonstrate how technology, design and function come together to better our lives.

Kohler’s Touchless Flush Toilets — just when you thought a heated seat was the best invention added to toilets, now we don’t even have to touch our toilets to flush them!

Kohler Touchless Flush Toilet

Kohler Touchless Flush Toilet

Tech Top by LG — this was really cool. Just place your cell phone, exercise tracker, glucose meter, heart rate meter, or portable speaker on the LG Viatera or HI-MACS counter surface and your battery will automatically charge! Check out their website http://www.lgtechtop.com/ to get the details and demo.

Tech Top by LG - diagram

Tech Top by LG

Viking Incognito Induction Warmer — this product installs under any counter surface and cooks through it with induction technology.

Viking Incognito Induction Warmer signage

Viking Incognito Induction Warmer counter closeup

Viking Incognito Induction Warmer counter closeup shows no visible signs of the technology

The Viking Professional French-Door Double Wall Oven — this design gives a modern, commercial look to your oven. It matches the current French-Door refrigeration trends and allows users to open using one hand. Perfectly designed for ADA needs. The large convection fan with bi-directional movement allows maximum airflow and excellent cooking results.

Viking Professional French-Door Double Wall Oven

The Viking Professional French-Door Double Wall Oven is perfectly designed for ADA needs

MasterBrand Cabinetry — Omega, Dynasty and Homecrest — these are our favorite cabinet lines and they can be used anywhere. Laundry, mudroom, and craft room are just a few possibilities!

Laundry cabinetry

Lots of storage keeps your laundry area organized

mudroom cabinetry

A mudroom never looked so good before! Everyone has everything they need ready to go out the door.

craft area cabinetry

An organized craft area provides everything you need within easy reach

Visit a Kitchen Views showroom and meet with a designer to add these great features to your dream kitchen, or any area of your home.

Brandy Souza, General Manager of Kitchen Views

Check List for Kitchen & Bath Remodeling

Brandy Souza of Kitchen Views

Kitchen Views at National Lumber enjoyed hosting our first EM NARI Networking event on April 16 along with co-host Allstate Glass. Two of our PRO Force salesmen, who specialize in working with remodelers, were there discussing current building projects.

Steven Kaitz, owner of National Lumber at the EM NARI Networking Event

Steven Kaitz (right), owner of National Lumber at the EM NARI Networking Event in the Kitchen Views showroom, Mansfield, MA

Many demonstration areas were available, including:

•  Allstate Glass frameless glass shower enclosures and back-painted glass backsplashes

•  Schrock and Dynasty representatives showed our vignettes of their cabinetry products and answered questions

•  Häfele introduced their new cabinet lighting that is installed in our two new kitchen vignettes

•  One of our Mansfield designers introduced our new cabinet re-facing program

•  Closet Factory showed their new finishes for custom closet products

Look for more photos in our Facebook and Google+ albums.

The night was filled with food, drinks and fantastic company. We had big winners too! Nancy from Masters Touch won a gift certificate to Closet factory. Dave from Home Repairs Carpentry in Norwood won a gift certificate to Allstate Glass, and Dave from Miller Construction won a Häfele tool kit and gift certificate for their product line.

But the biggest winner is the EM NARI scholarship fund. Annually, a scholarship is awarded to an immediate family member of an EM NARI member who is a high school graduating senior who has been accepted as a full-time student to an accredited college or university in any program of study. Thanks to everyone who attended we collected $800 for the scholarship fund.

Builders had a chance to see many of the new products going into kitchens now. Many of them feel the market for remodeling is strengthening. Adding these products to any renovation is sure to add value to a customer’s home.

Mike McDole speaking to a guest at the EM NARI Networking Event

Mike McDole, National Lumber’s Senior Vice President of Sales, speaking to a guest at the EM NARI Networking Event in the Kitchen Views showroom.

We are looking forward to another networking night! We invite you to check National Lumber’s website Events page, national-lumber.com/events, periodically to see what’s coming up.

In the meantime, we invite you to visit a National Lumber location near you to find out about the PRO Force Remodelers program. Feel free to visit a Kitchen Views at National Lumber showroom and speak to one of our designers about your next project.

Brandy Souza
General Manager of Kitchen Views

Hafele SmartCab Kitchen Cabinet Storage System

Hafele SmartCab Kitchen Cabinet Storage System

When we first shared the new SmartCab kitchen cabinet storage system from Häfele on Pinterest, it got a lot of love, to the tune of 6 likes and 16 re-pins. Known more for their cabinetry hardware, Hafele is offering a storage solution that can fit into virtually any kitchen design. The SmartCab system is designed to maximize the use of those narrow cabinet areas in your kitchen. They are designed to fit into 15- or 18-inch cabinets with a drawer above the door, as is the case with standard base cabinets. Hafele’s SmartCab can be customized to be able to store a wide variety of household items. Whether you need a handy place for your cutting boards, or a spice organizer, or somewhere to keep your foil and wrap rolls, the SmartCab system can offer a solution.

Kitchen Views
www.kitchenviews.com

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.

Small Kitchen Designs That Work – Storage & Organization Solutions from Schrock and KraftMaid

One of the most important aspects of designing a new kitchen is to consider what tasks you want to accomplish and what storage is needed to support those tasks – general cooking, specialty baking, storage of bulk shopping, storage of special small appliances, etc.

Once you know what you need to store, you can begin looking at the multitude of storage solutions that are available from various cabinetry brands. Shown here are some that you may have seen before, and some that may be new to you. You’ll notice that this specialized type of storage helps you to maximize your available space.

KraftMaid upper cabinet wall filler pullout

What may have been wasted space before can now be useful storage with one of many innovative storage solutions. Cabinetry makers know that designers and homeowners want to get maximum storage per square foot. They’ve taken that need and found many creative solutions. Take for example the spice storage rack by KraftMaid shown above, which is only about 2 or 3 inches wide. It goes to show that cabinetry makers now have storage solutions for every nook and cranny of your kitchen.

KraftMaid base cabinet blind corner with swing out

KraftMaid also offers corner cabinetry options that can be used as alternatives to a Lazy Susan, offering an unprecedented amount of storage space for an otherwise very small corner area.

Schrock also provides many unique and versatile storage solutions. For example, look at the pantry option above. It allows for far more storage than you would expect from a three-foot wide space. Pantries will never be the same!

Schrock Utility organizer holding brooms and cleaning supplies

Schrock has another great narrow cabinetry option, a Utility Organizer that’s only six inches deep. It can serve as a broom closet, or even a small pantry. What could you imagine storing here?

The Kitchen Views Design Team has product knowledge of all the options available for you, and the real-life experience to help you find the best storage solutions for your new kitchen.


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