Latest Kitchen Storage and Design Options

Latest Kitchen Storage and Design Options

My monthly perusal of kitchen remodeling and kitchen design trade magazines gives me new ideas for items and processes I can incorporate in my clients’ kitchen designs. Here are four kitchen design trends, randomly picked, that I want to share with you:

Sliding Cabinet Doors

The continuing trend in American kitchen design continues to be “sleekness”. Sliding cabinet doors in lieu of doors that swing open offer one way to achieve that sleek look while maximizing available space.

sliding kitchen cabinet doors

Sliding Kitchen Cabinet Doors


Watch the video below to see how sliding cabinet doors work on Hafele’s Frontino unit:


 

Kitchen Workspace / Function Hidden Behind Retractable Doors

In smaller living spaces such as loft apartments and the like, the kitchen is often part of the overall living space. This open concept is appealing, yet for those who wish at times the kitchen looked more like furniture, the Orgavital by Mobalco offers a beautifully-designed and highly functional solution:

Orgavital kitchen storage cabinet

Orgavital Kitchen Storage Cabinet

Deep Drawers for Storage

Deep kitchen storage drawers are becoming ever more popular. Deep drawers can be designed to store trays, dishes, glasses, liquor bottles and taller small appliances.

Deep kitchen storage drawers

Deep kitchen storage drawers

Frameless or Full Access Cabinetry

frameless cabinet construction

Frameless Cabinets

American and traditional European cabinetry typically incorporates
1 ½ face frame construction.
 
In contrast, frameless, or rather, full access cabinetry uses ¾ “box” construction which maximizes interior cabinet space utilization. Drawer boxes and pullouts can be wider thereby increasing actual storage space in a kitchen.
 
Along with the trend for a more seamless look, this type of construction therefore offers dual benefits.


 
Sandra Brannock, Owner, Expert Kitchen Designs

Sandra Brannock, Owner, Expert Kitchen Designs, Virginia

Sandra Brannock designs beautiful, timeless, functional kitchens that reflect your personal style, within your budget. She helps discerning homeowners throughout Northern and Central Virginia, Maryland and Washington DC get the kitchen of their dreams and select the perfect cabinetry, fixtures, flooring, lighting, and appliances to make their dream kitchen a reality.
 

Call Sandra today at (703) 801-6402 to schedule a kitchen remodeling consultation. Sandra will help you get the most value out of your kitchen remodeling budget.

A Chef-Worthy $50,000 Kitchen Remodel

A Chef-Worthy $50,000 Kitchen Remodel

Sandra Brannock, Expert Kitchen Designs

I was honored to be invited to contribute to the Trulia real estate blog recently on the topic of how to get a chef-worthy kitchen on a $50,000 budget.

According to Remodeling Magazine, the average cost nationally in the United States for a 200-square-foot major kitchen remodel in 2015 is $56,278. And this falls into the category of a “low budget” kitchen remodel.

Start By Talking With Your Kitchen Designer

Often, homeowners don’t understand the cost-saving benefits of hiring an expert kitchen designer at the outset of your planning process. Your kitchen designer will ask the questions needed to clarify your vision, your goals, your time frame, your style and your budget, so you will know what is and what is not realistic within your budget.

Share your ideas and your priorities with your kitchen designer and ask them to help you clarify your kitchen remodeling ideas and direction. If your kitchen designer suggests that something you want is not cost-worthy, heed his or her advice.

Another advantage of working with a kitchen designer is that he or she will usually be able to provide you with higher quality cabinetry and appliances at better price points than you will find at big box home improvement stores.

Best Places to Splurge in a Kitchen Remodeling Project

The best places to splurge on your kitchen remodeling project are cabinets (estimated cost: $20,000 – $25,000) and quality appliances (estimated cost: $10,000 – $14,000).

Kitchen Cabinetry

Your kitchen cabinetry will endure the most abuse, so look for all-plywood construction along with a superior finish and top-notch door and drawer hardware. While your initial investment will be 20% to 30% more upfront, you will realize a positive return on your investment in five or more years when your cabinetry looks and feels as great as when it was first installed.

If you’re looking to trim costs, cabinets with MDF construction will save you approximately 12%. Oak, knotty alder, and hickory are no-upcharge wood species that will save you 6% to 22%. Consider high-pressure laminate for a contemporary look.

High End Dishwashers

A high-end dishwasher is a luxury worth considering, especially if it also offers the custom panel option. Hoods can be customized to suit the overall design.

Induction Ranges

If you’re currently using an electric range, don’t worry about converting to gas for a pro-caliber kitchen. Instead, replace the old stove with an induction model. There are many high-end professional kitchens using this marvelous method. It is instantaneous, efficient, and also minimizes the extra heat generated in a hardworking kitchen.

For more ideas on how to get a luxurious kitchen on a budget of $50,000 or less, visit the Trulia blog at: How to Create a Chef Worthy Kitchen Remodel for $50,000 or Less.


Sandra Brannock, Owner, Expert Kitchen Designs

Sandra Brannock, Owner, Expert Kitchen Designs, Virginia

Sandra Brannock designs beautiful, timeless, functional kitchens that reflect your personal style, within your budget. She helps discerning homeowners throughout Northern and Central Virginia, Maryland and Washington DC get the kitchen of their dreams and select the perfect cabinetry, fixtures, flooring, lighting, and appliances to make their dream kitchen a reality.

Call Sandra today at (703) 801-6402 to schedule a kitchen remodeling consultation. Sandra will help you get the most value out of your kitchen remodeling budget and ensure that all the details of your kitchen renovation proceed smoothly, on time and within budget.

Expert Kitchen Design Tips: Keeping Cool During the Hot Remodeling Season

Expert Kitchen Design Tips: Keeping Cool During the Hot Remodeling Season

Sandra Brannock, Expert Kitchen Designer

Sandra Brannock, Expert Kitchen Designer

After nervously weathering a lull in business this past winter, I’ve been blessed with a “flash flood” of kitchen design clients over the past eight weeks.

I am not alone in the “feast or famine” home improvement business cycle. Just about everyone in the home remodeling industry experiences a sharp upturn in business during the April – October peak season when homeowners decide they are ready to get started on the home improvements they’ve been dreaming about through the holiday season and winter months.

The spring and summer seasons are a thrilling time of year, when I get to apply my unique talents and skill sets in service to a variety of clients, each with their own unique vision, budget, space constraints, design tastes, and expectations.

It is also a crazy-making time of year when I and my team members are challenged to manage homeowner expectations while keeping each kitchen remodeling project on schedule, within budget, and tend to the hundreds of details involved in every kitchen remodeling project.

A kitchen designer’s job is akin to an orchestral conductor who must ensure that each member of the orchestra is properly rehearsed, cued to play their part at the exact right point in time, and in perfect balance with their fellow musicians from the beginning to the end of the symphony.

When a new client hires me, they are usually eager to get started on their kitchen remodeling project immediately. And I am eager to please them with a kitchen design that delights and exceeds their expectations.

My tasks as a kitchen designer include:

  • an initial consultation with each client where I ask clarifying questions and listen deeply to identify the client’s vision, goals and budget,
  • evaluating existing space constraints,
  • perfect measurement taking,
  • project documentation,
  • drawing,
  • aesthetic prowess,
  • attention to details when ordering, and
  • the ability to accommodate the client’s change requests at any point in time without losing focus and momentum

… all while maintaining sanity in my own personal life.

Remodeling partnersMy own job is complicated by the availability of my trade partners who, like me, are working with other clients who each have their own set of needs and scheduling expectations.

During the peak remodeling season from April – October, cabinet manufacturers, appliance and plumbing suppliers, countertop fabricators, and tile shops are all operating at full or capacity, striving to meet the demand and deliver their products and services on schedule to each and every customer.

When consumer demand is at its peak, and each service provider and manufacturer is working at full capacity to meet the demand while the market is “hot,” it is inevitable that mistakes will be made.

So if you, dear prospective client, want to ensure the best outcome for your kitchen remodeling project, here are my suggestions:

  1. Start early, well before the peak season hits. Home remodeling contractors have plenty of time from October – February to give you the undivided attention you want and deserve. A successful kitchen or home remodeling project takes months to complete. You need to allow a realistic amount of time for advance planning, mid-stream changes of plans, and contractor scheduling, especially if you want your remodeling project completed in time for the holiday season.
  2. When you meet with a designer and contractor, know that their cost estimates and estimated completion time are just estimates. It is impossible to accurately determine the final cost and time frame for your project until all key elements have been identified, including fixture, appliance and finish selections, permitting, manufacturing schedules, subcontractor availability, and delays due to weather or unforeseen construction circumstances.
  3. Be flexible. I have found that by the time a client is ready to leap into the process, a sense of urgency overwhelms them. Everyone involved in your project wants to be efficient and get the job done on time, on budget, and in a way that leaves you thrilled and delighted. But the reality is that planning any remodeling project will take much longer than you expect. You will be happier when you align your expectations with reality.
  4. Do not impose your unrealistic expectations for a speedy and perfect delivery on your remodeling team. When remodeling contractors pressure their employees and subcontractors to “hurry up” to please you, mistakes will be made and you will not be happy with the final outcome.

Sandra Brannock, Owner, Expert Kitchen Designs

Sandra Brannock, Owner, Expert Kitchen Designs, Virginia

Sandra Brannock designs beautiful, timeless, functional kitchens that reflect your personal style, within your budget. She helps discerning homeowners throughout Northern and Central Virginia, Maryland and Washington DC get the kitchen of their dreams and select the perfect cabinetry, fixtures, flooring, lighting, and appliances to make their dream kitchen a reality.

Call Sandra today at (703) 801-6402 to schedule a kitchen remodeling consultation. Sandra will help you get the most value out of your kitchen remodeling budget and ensure that all the details of your kitchen renovation proceed smoothly, on time and within budget.

Kitchen Remodeling Success Tip #2: Timeframe

Kitchen Remodeling Success Tip #2: Timeframe

An important consideration in every kitchen remodeling project is your timeframe. You may have a high sense of urgency to complete your kitchen makeover as quickly as possible so as to minimize disruptions to your family’s routines.

However, it’s important to be realistic about the amount of time needed to thoroughly plan the details and elements of your kitchen makeover to ensure that you are happy with the final outcome.

You and your family members will need to make key decisions on multiple elements that will go into your new kitchen, including:

  • Paint colors
  • Flooring materials and finishes
  • Countertop materials and selections
  • Kitchen cabinetry styles, materials, and selections
  • Kitchen appliances and accessories

Your kitchen remodeling choices must also be coordinated with the building contractor who will have his own timeline for scheduling and installing your kitchen elements, so it’s essential that decisions be made in a timely manner to avoid costly project management delays.

Chances are, you will need to invest more time than you anticipated in planning for your kitchen remodeling project.

The more you communicate your desires, preferences, choices and expectations up front to your kitchen designer and building contractor, the better your chances of being delighted with the final outcome of your kitchen remodel.


Sandra Brannock, Owner, Expert Kitchen Designs

Sandra Brannock, Owner, Expert Kitchen Designs

Sandra Brannock designs beautiful, timeless, functional kitchens that reflect your personal style, within your budget. She helps discerning homeowners throughout Northern and Central Virginia, Maryland and Washington DC get the kitchen of their dreams and select the perfect cabinetry, fixtures, flooring, lighting, and appliances to make their dream kitchen a reality. Let Expert Kitchen Designs take the headaches out of your kitchen remodeling project and take care of all the details so your kitchen renovation proceeds smoothly, on time and within budget.

How to Set a Realistic Kitchen Remodeling Budget

How to Set a Realistic Kitchen Remodeling Budget

When I meet with a new kitchen remodeling client, one of the first questions I always ask is, “What is your budget for your kitchen remodel?” This is a tough question for most people. You may not feel comfortable discussing money matters with your kitchen designer right away. You may be thinking that whatever number you disclose will be either too much money or too little money. Or, you simply may not know what your kitchen remodeling budget should be.

View Video


Nevertheless, it is important to establish a realistic budget that will cover the costs of all the elements you want to have in your remodeled kitchen.

One way we arrive at a realistic budget number is to sit down and talk about it. I will talk with you about all the elements of your kitchen design and what you can expect to spend on lighting, the design, cabinetry, flooring, appliances, hardware, and anything you may have seen on Houzz or showrooms that you want to include in your kitchen remodel.

By having a candid discussion to start with, we will be able to determine a realistic budget for your kitchen remodeling project.


Sandra Brannock, Owner, Expert Kitchen DesignsSandra Brannock designs beautiful, timeless, functional kitchens that reflect your personal style, within your budget. She helps discerning homeowners throughout Northern and Central Virginia, Maryland and Washington DC get the kitchen of their dreams and select the perfect cabinetry, fixtures, flooring, lighting, and appliances to make their dream kitchen a reality. Let Expert Kitchen Designs take the headaches out of your kitchen remodeling project and take care of all the details so your kitchen renovation proceeds smoothly, on time and within budget.