Posts Tagged 'remodeling'

Understanding the Design Journey

Nicole Amaral, Kitchen Views Designer

Comfort
The word comfort does not seem to fit what most people think of when planning a remodeling project. But in fact, the Kitchen Views Team will make you feel comfortable with the process, or as we say – help you enjoy the design journey.

Whether a kitchen or bath remodel, or adding built-in storage to your home, the early stages of planning your project can be overwhelming. Time and time again I hear stories from customers about their previous discouraging experiences before arriving at our showroom hoping to find real help.

Starting a remodel is never easy, but it is something that our experienced designers can help you enjoy as we move through the process together. Experience has taught us how to face the inevitable challenges of a remodeling project and find the solutions needed.

Country kitchen sink area in North Attleboro home designed by Nicole Amaral

Style
Designing on trend is easy for a designer since it is within their comfort zone, but it is not necessarily what you want. The designer you are working with should be able to design specifically for you within the style that makes you happy and what will go well with your home, not just what is currently trendy.

Understanding
The importance of having a designer listen to you is paramount – it is the key to a successful outcome. It does not matter how beautiful your kitchen remodel is once it is completed if it does not function in the way that you need. When it comes to weighing your wants and needs in a kitchen, it is important for your designer to understand you as an individual, then dig into your wish list and decipher what is truly important to YOU. How often do you cook? Do you bake? Do you entertain large groups of people? Or do you prefer a small casual dining space? Are there any special physical considerations needed – such as being left-handed, or needing to sit while you work? Are universal design elements important to you or members of your family?

Lots of storage space is available in the island of this country-style kitchen plus more cabinetry around the perimeter of the kitchen designed by Nicole Amaral

Storage
Early in the process, when discussing the layout, you need to talk to your designer about what you need to store in the available space. Are you storing tall pots and pans, do you keep a lot of spices, how many dish sets do you have, and what are you cooking, or baking? These answers tell the designer which appliances, work areas, and supply storage are needed.

Work areas and seating are designed to accommodate traffic flow in this country-style kitchen by Nicole Amaral

Traffic
Another key component to designing a kitchen that functions well is to look at the traffic flow through the space. In other words, who is going to be in your kitchen? Do you have young children, do you have a lot of company over, or do you throw a lot of parties? Answering these questions will help the designer make the layout serve your needs. Appropriate placement of workstations, walkways and seating rely on your needs and expectations .

Chemistry
If you do not feel happy with how your designer is communicating with you, or the ideas they are presenting, speak up. Clear communication is vital to a successful outcome. Do not be afraid to ask for a new designer or go elsewhere. It is better to feel understood and confident with your designer than to struggle through the process feeling misunderstood. Sometimes a fresh set of eyes, new ideas and different opinions will help you move forward confidently with your remodel.

Which brings us back to Comfort
Even though the remodeling process is detail-oriented, and sometimes a challenge as your normal routine is disrupted during construction, it should not be overwhelming. Your designer should always make you feel comfortable with taking the next step. If at any point something is making you feel uncomfortable or unhappy, and you are questioning any part of the process or progress of your project, take a moment to pause and ask questions. Standing in the middle of a space under construction is a new experience for most homeowners. A skilled designer should be able to explain their planned outcome for the design in detail, the reasons for the pace of the work, while also being able to take your constructive criticism and if necessary tweak their design into something that makes you comfortable. The designer’s goal is to exceed your expectations with a beautiful result that you will enjoy for years to come.

Nicole Amaral
Kitchen Views, 90 Norfolk St, Mansfield, MA 02048

Spice Up Your Kitchen

Omega Cabinetry, Blue Island in Dark Wood Kitchen

Visit a Kitchen Views showroom to see and feel the quality of the cabinetry you’re purchasing, an important aspect missing from an online shopping experience. What looks good in a picture can be disappointing when seen in person. Kitchen Views sells quality brands that will impress you when you experience them in our showrooms. The construction quality of cabinetry differs, and you want your investment in this foundational element to stand the test of time with solid construction.

Continue reading ‘Spice Up Your Kitchen’

Evaluate Your Current Kitchen – Amy Mood

Amy Mood, Designer at Kitchen Views in Mansfield, MA

You’ve been thinking for quite a while that you’d like to remodel your kitchen. Watching home remodeling shows and searching the internet for information has become your favorite pastime. You’re dreaming of a particular new cabinetry style and new countertops. Whether you select a stained wood or painted cabinet, granite or quartz countertop, there is a bigger picture to be considered first.

Woman imagining new kitchen design

For a successful renovation, it’s essential that you evaluate your current kitchen. Remodeling a kitchen isn’t just about making it pretty. What looks good on television, in a magazine, or online is mostly about the “look” of the materials, and sometimes about the work flow. All of this is intended to inspire you to make changes. But you need to focus on how you use the working areas and storage in your own home. What do you like, or not like about the current amount of counter space, storage space, and traffic flow?

Stop and think about what problem needs a solution. What in your current layout drives you crazy, or makes daily tasks feel like a big chore? What is in the current kitchen that simply gets in your way? Whether it’s small appliances that you only use occasionally or everyday clutter, there can be solutions built into the new cabinetry. Kitchen designers know about all the latest cabinetry features that are available.

Schrock Pantry Storage Cabinets

What items need to be stored for daily use (plates, glasses, plastic containers, pots & pans), seasonal use (picnic basket, cooler and BBQ accessories), or occasional use (small appliances, punch bowl and holiday dishes) etc. Taking this inventory makes you aware of when and how you use these items. You may discover that you can give away items you no longer need.

What can you absolutely not live without? Whether that’s a gas stove or an island, making this list will be vital to the design of the new kitchen. What daily tasks need special features in the new kitchen design — cooking, baking, clean-up, entertaining, homework, bill paying, etc.

Who uses the kitchen — adults, children, handicapped or elderly people? You may have heard of universal design, but thought it was only for people with physical handicaps. Actually, universal design includes features that people of all ages and abilities can enjoy every day.

Do you have pets? On the Kitchen Views website you’ll find a section dedicated to pet-friendly kitchen design. [http://www.kitchenviews.com/pet]

If all of this seems like a lot to think about, remind yourself that paying attention to all of these details now will result in a new kitchen that makes your life easier for years to come. You don’t have to come up with the solution by yourself. Describe the problem to an experienced designer and they will provide you with a solution, or options.

Take “before” photos – you’ll be amazed when you look back at them later.

Amy Mood, AKBD
Kitchen Views at National Lumber
71 Maple Street, Mansfield, MA 02048
Phone: 508-339-8020
amood@kitchenviews.com
www.kitchenviews.com

Kitchen islands encourage sharing and teaching

Children helping mother make school lunches at kitchen island

As children go back to school, every parent knows it’s time to make school lunches and do homework again. Large kitchen islands have become a favorite gathering place for families to enjoy time together while doing these daily tasks.

Involving children in meal preparation gives them important time together as a family, which not only teaches them about good nutrition, but provides them with emotional connections to each other. In our highly technological society, family time is more valuable than ever.

Young family together at kitchen island, close up

Sharing time together while doing homework is more emotionally rewarding than just learning their school lessons. Especially for young children, being sent to another room to do homework can feel like punishment. Interacting with parents while establishing good study habits can help them develop a lifelong love of learning. As children get older, they may require more solitude while studying, but they’ll be more productive because they learned these early lessons as a family.

Girl at kitchen island with young women, preparing meal in the kitchen

Kitchen islands with seating for casual meals are not just convenient. While it may make meals easier to prepare, eat and cleanup all in one place, this family gathering place is about building happy memories together.

Man teaching boy food prep at kitchen island

Building confidence is an important aspect of life skill lessons and leads to healthy independence. When children are old enough to handle a knife safely, cooking lessons get more technical. As with most learning, hands-on experience is the best way to learn.

It’s important to consider how you want your family to interact daily when planning a kitchen remodel. As a major family gathering space, the importance of a kitchen should not be underestimated. The best kitchen design is much more than the style and color of cabinetry and whether to include an island. An experienced kitchen designer will listen and learn about what works for your family. That allows them to design a living space that works well for you. Your designer will expertly handle the storage issues, appliance placement, and space layout so that you’ll simply enjoy using your kitchen for years to come.

When you’re ready to get started with the planning stage of a kitchen design, or remodel, start your research in the “Getting Started” section of our website. Then contact a Kitchen Views showroom near you to get the personalized attention you deserve.

Our designers work hard to exceed your expectations.

Contact Kitchen Views at 508-DESIGNS [337-4467] or visit our website for more information.

Imagine … an outdoor kitchen for true outdoor living

Family eating meal outside in garden

While the current heat wave in New England has everyone either running into the air conditioning, or jumping in a pool, this extreme heat is not the norm for our area. Outdoor spring and summer days in New England are long awaited and usually beautiful.

If you enjoy entertaining in your backyard, you may already have a deck with a casual dining area and a grill to cook traditional summer meals like hamburgers and hot dogs.

As you’ve been enjoying your backyard this summer, have you been wishing you had a real outdoor kitchen for al fresco family meals and summer parties? Kitchen Views now sells Wolf Endurance cabinetry, specifically made for outdoor kitchens.

Continue reading ‘Imagine … an outdoor kitchen for true outdoor living’

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

Kitchen Design & Home Improvement Go Hand in Hand. Survey results show 55% of consumers plan to do a kitchen remodel.

Amy Mood of Kitchen Views works with a client and her daughter on a kitchen remodeling project

A recent online survey done by remodelormove.com shows that American consumers are feeling more confident in spending money toward home improvement projects.  The survey had 5,000 participants who answered a range of approximately 70 questions to determine if the majority would rather move or remodel. Every participant showed interest in making some sort of improvement to their current home.  The results show consumers are willing to spend around 30% of their home’s value for the home improvements.

With long-term value being a factor in remodeling, homeowners are willing to use more expensive materials in their projects. A majority, 74% responded that they plan to hire a general contractor to do the work, rather than undertaking projects themselves. Along with hiring construction professionals, more than half of the respondents plan to hire an architect. Homeowners are planning their projects on a larger scale and are including multiple rooms, and will be better served having professionals to oversee the project.

The percentage of homeowners planning to do a kitchen remodel is right above the halfway mark at 55%. Kitchen remodels are taking precedence over baths, according to the survey, and this is where consumers are willing to invest more of their budget. Since the contemporary kitchen is the hub of family activities, this is really an investment in improving family life.

Kitchen Views at National Lumber has experienced designers to serve you through every phase of your remodeling projects. We can supply you with the building supplies you need and the services you deserve. Those services include getting to know the unique needs of your family. Your particular tastes and lifestyle are factored into the design. We strive to exceed your expectations. One of our designers will follow the project from concept to completion. Kitchen Views at National Lumber, where the designers are pros and the views are yours!

Resource: Americans Willing to Spend More to Remodel, Survey Says

Remodeling Relationships

Every strong personal relationship requires patience and compromise. Remodeling your home requires the same positive attitude. The best relationships grow out of challenges that are faced as a team. The best remodeling results come from a team effort. Get your team prepared for the challenge of remodeling by seeking good advice and it will be a wonderful design journey.

Have you checked out HOUZZ? You’ll find lots of remodeling ideas and helpful information, like this:

Here’s a small excerpt:

Many of the survey’s respondents suggested divvying up responsibilities so each person has a say in the creative process. “I do most of the decorating decisions, but my husband picks the TV that will go on the wall, complete with speakers or a particular fireplace that he likes,” one respondent said. “He gets his say without feeling the need to get involved with my area.”

“We early on decided to assign departments to each other based on our strengths,” another said. “I am Negotiations, Logistics, Procurement, Paint and Design; he is Health & Safety, Food & Drink, Dirty Jobs and Heavy Lifting.”

When you’re ready, we hope you’ll check out kitchenviews.com to get the professional help to guide you through your design journey.

Kitchen Views – where the designers are pros, and the views are yours

kitchenviews.com
1-508-DESIGNS
Serving the New England region

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

Defining Your Style with Cabinetry

There are many ways you can dress your home to create your dream space. Your home is a reflection on you through your style and what makes you feel happy. When you have guests, you want everyone to feel welcomed, relaxed and just as happy as you are to be there.

Contemporary style living room shown using custom cabinetry

Cabinets aren’t just for the kitchen anymore.

Before you start the project, hire an expert; someone to guide and assist you throughout the entire process. We have talented designers on staff here at Kitchen Views. Their knowledge of products is unparalleled and their foresight into potential issues makes them extremely valuable to have on your remodeling team. Once you have a designer you are comfortable with, you can then begin to weigh out your options and start creating your budget and timeline. The most prominent style defining item in your new space will be your cabinetry.  With so many options available, whether they are custom made, semi-custom or stock cabinetry, you have the opportunity to create your dream home. Working with your designer, you will determine which option will be the best fit for your budget, timeline, and most importantly, your home. Below we summarize the differences between these types of cabinets.

The most economical option is to use stock cabinets. They come in standard sizes and finish colors, and offer little to no modifications. There are options available to spruce up their functionality such as pull out baskets to hide the trash receptacle, or pull out shelving to keep items like spices neatly organized. These cabinets are usually readily available, making it easier to keep your remodel timeline on track.

Stylish bedroom showing multiple cabinets in contrasting colors

The neutral color scheme in this bedroom allows contrasting cabinets to be used as decoration as well as storage space.

If you want to tailor your space closer to your own style, you may look into adding semi-custom or custom cabinets. The addition of semi-custom products allows you to add more personal touches to make your kitchen more unique to fit your lifestyle. Features such as soft close doors and large drawers for storage can be included. You will find more door styles and color options, and the finish on these is better than the finish on a standard stock cabinet. If you choose to use semi-custom cabinetry, you’ll want to plan your timeline accordingly as these may take 4-8 weeks to be delivered.

Sometimes, the most desirable option for your particular remodel would be the choice of having your cabinets’ custom made, whether it is a custom size or finish. In this category you will get the most impeccable quality of cabinet. There are more wood species to choose from. You have the ability to choose the color, the finish and finish techniques to ultimately define your space your way. Some manufacturers even have color matching ability to give you exactly what color you are looking for. The cabinet can be created in any size and to fit any configuration. Choosing this option is the most expensive, and extends the timeline, because these cabinets can take anywhere from 6-12 weeks to deliver.

Irpina transitional entertainment center

This transitional style entertainment room used mixed cabinetry from Irpinia to make a visual statement and provide plenty of storage.

No matter what type of cabinetry you choose for your new living space, there are many options out there to decorate and accessorize with. Your dream space will reflect your personality and your style. When you dream it, we will design it!

Visit a Kitchen Views showroom near you, where the designers are pros and the views are yours.


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