Kitchen Design: Laminate Cabinet Guide

Why we love Today’s Laminates It can be glossy and bright, or textured and subtle. Building kitchen cabinets with laminate offers limitless options, and Designers love that!. Laminate has been around a long time - it was developed in the United States in the early 1900s, and has been used in kitchens almost ever since. First, let talk about just what laminate is. This is not the same laminate Grandma had in her kitchen. The materials and technology are cutting edge. There are 2 types of laminate used in furnishings, and each has advantages and limitations. Both are similar in their … [Read more...]

A Kitchen Installation Checklist

What to expect when… You are having your new kitchen installed We run our own install crew, and they can tell the minute they enter a house if the homeowner is prepared for us, or if they have no idea what’s in store. Believe me, if a client isn’t ready on install day I hear about it! So here are a few of the main things to plan for, and to help keep your install on track: Get Ready~ Empty your cabinets. Clear your countertops. Set up a temporary kitchen area. Remove items from the wall and clear the traffic areas. Clear a spot (probably in the garage) for your newly delivered … [Read more...]

Kitchen Design: The 2015 Top Kitchen Trends

In Demand Kitchen Features Houzz together with Kitchen & Bath Design News recently published a study showing the top new kitchen features built by Brooks Construction. While there are no surprises, it is a great reminder to designers of the basic things that are most important to a client. #1 Open to other rooms  52% If you have ever watched one of those 'house shopping' or home-remodeling TV shows, then you know that open floor plans are in huge demand. Homeowners want flow from one living space to another, the ability to see other areas. and easy entertaining space. #2 … [Read more...]

Kitchen Design: Open Shelving – A Visual Guide

Designers love open shelving, but will it work in your kitchen? Let’s look at some of the pros and cons of open storage. First off, why do designers love open shelving so much? The esthetics: open storage adds interest; it creates a focal point. It looks different, and we love different! Here are some great examples of where, how, and why to use open shelves: Open storage breaks up a monotonous run of cabinets: Shelving creates a focal point where otherwise you might not have one: The look of open storage can help transition from one living space to another, or … [Read more...]

Kitchen Design: The 2016 Top Cabinet Choice

White kitchen cabinets: Classic. Timeless. Versatile. It is easy to see why homeowners are drawn to this enduring favorite. Houzz together with Kitchen & Bath Design News recently published a study showing that white cabinets are chosen 49% of the time. Almost half of us are doing white kitchens! Here in Chicagoland there are a number of factors my clients mention that influence this decision: v  We are doing a huge amount of wood floors, often in mid and dark tones. To avoid the whole issue of matching the wood stain of the cabinets to the color of the flooring, we choose … [Read more...]

Kitchen Design: To Crown or not to Crown

Deciding whether to use crown molding on your kitchen cabinets Since the ancient Greeks, crown molding has been the finishing touch, that final decorative layer added to a room. The Greeks gave us the graceful profiles and rules of proportion that we still use today when we are creating this traditional, elegant and polished look.  When paired with a highly detailed, traditional cabinet, crown molding is elaborate and detailed, often consisting of several stacked pieces. In a traditional design we love … [Read more...]

Cabinets 101: Product Safety

How safe are the materials in your kitchen cabinets? Your expectations are: when you purchase a product it will be manufactured to pass the health and safety standards set for that type of product.  If anywhere along the manufacturing process someone breaches this trust, people can get hurt.   You, the consumer, are the end of the line. See the show at Recently, CBS on its 60 Minutes show did an expose on overseas factories using formaldehyde in wood products (in this case flooring), in quantities that far exceeds US safety standards.  These US … [Read more...]

Kitchen Remodeling: Installing Cabinets

You did it! You’ve put together the perfect kitchen design, the perfect door style, and the perfect wood species - perfect everything.  You have everything ready to go.  The only thing that you are missing is someone to install your new kitchen cabinets. You now have two options:  Do it yourself or hire someone.    Let’s explore why you would install your kitchen cabinets yourself: You’re a professional craftsman and you have the skills. All the little lines on a tape measure do not confuse or confound you. You already have all the proper tools.  If you do not have the correct tools, … [Read more...]

Kitchen Design: A Microwave Guide

Where oh where will the microwave go? Today’s kitchens are bigger, brighter and more open than ever before. Windows are large, often taking up a majority of available wall space. See EZ Window Solutions for examples on how to arrange you kitchen with little wall space. Kitchens are designed around a focal point, and great attention is given to the appearance of this area. Often this focal point is the cooktop or range wall. The cooking area is centrally located, and offers a great opportunity for decorative tile or stone. It is designed to be symmetrical, and the availability of decorative … [Read more...]

Kitchen Design: Contemporary in the Suburbs

Can I do a contemporary kitchen in the middle of suburbia? “Contemporary is the watchword for North American kitchen design, according to the 2015 Kitchen & Bath Design Trends report from the National Kitchen & Bath (NKBA).” Are all these kitchens in urban loft-style homes? No, actually they are your neighbors. A lot of these homes have a small kitchen remodel making them even better. “The rise of contemporary and transitional kitchen designs have been swift. Both styles have increased in specifications by more than 15 percentage points in just four years.” –NKBA We are … [Read more...]