Wednesday, August 24, 2011

A kitchen is more than just a cooking area

    It is a place where your friends and family gather to enjoy conversation, stories and good food.  But this begins with a design that has style, function and comfort where everyone who enters feels welcome.    Whether you have the luxury of a large spacious kitchen or a small kitchen, there are always options.  With space saving products and ideas for functionality you can create a unique kitchen. 
The floor plan is the first place to start, whether you have a U-shaped, L-shaped or galley style kitchen a design specific to a style that you are looking for can begin to take shape.   There are many things to consider when planning a kitchen; you may want an island or a work space that is a focal point.  Storage is a very important feature to consider. Spending time planning out the space you require is key to make your kitchen function for maximum efficiency.  It is important to consider every square inch in a smaller kitchen to ensure that you are making the best use of the space that is available.  In a larger kitchen you could consider designing a space around your guests while entertaining them and incorporate more than one cooking area so your guests feel as though they are part of the experience.  The island is a great feature (if there’s room).  You could design the island out of a different style cabinet, color or material to make it stand out.  Incorporating an antique piece of furniture could really be stunning.
Lighting is very important and can be easily overlooked.  Take the time here to place the right lighting for function and mood.  I suggest taking your floor plan to a lighting supplier and working with a design specialist to help you find the best lighting the ambiance that you are looking to create.
A new kitchen can be an excellent investment in most homes, which is why it should be well designed or it could become a financial liability. Whether it is a remodel or a brand new kitchen it should be functional and aesthetically pleasing and within your budget.  A kitchen design can be highly specialized and complex, so I would recommend finding a professional kitchen designer to help you whether your doing it yourself or hiring a contractor to do the actual work.  A kitchen designer understands how a kitchen functions, and analyzes the family’s lifestyle, interests and need in both cooking and entertaining.  A designer can ask questions and discuss needs, tastes, wants and budget.  A designer can give you ideas you may not have thought of and also ideas to help keep the cost down considerably.
When considering a professional designer or contractor check for references, experience they have and request to see one of their projects.  Most people that have had a positive kitchen experience would love to show off the finished product.
 Always make sure to take out the proper permits required and always use licensed plumbers and electricians. Talk about the budget with them and consider all the costs to final completion prior to signing any contracts.  
Hiring an independent Kitchen designer is beneficial when choosing your cabinets.  Cabinet shops will have their own designers but they may not work with you as extensively as an independent Kitchen Designer would.  You also don’t have to option to shop around at other cabinets companies because the design you are working on with the specific shop will be based on you purchasing cabinets from them and they generally will not release any drawings until you are committed or have signed a contract to work with and purchase your cabinets from them.   An independent kitchen designer works for you and has your specific interests and dreams in mind.   You will pay for your custom design but you will own it and have the freedom to shop for the cabinet style and quality you want at a competitive price.  

Friday, September 17, 2010

Kitchen Renovations

  The kitchen the most used room and the most expensive renovation in your home.  It’s important to explore all the possibilities before choosing the final design, so a good kitchen planer is invaluable.  You may think that there are not many choices for how your new kitchen can be laid out.  For it’s best functional and style especially smaller kitchens.  However, using a professional will help you discover many ideas that you may never have thought of.
  When considering a kitchen design, be flexible and open minded to moving a sink or maybe an appliance. It may not cost as much as you think.  Your existing kitchen was usually designed by builders or kitchen cabinet sales people and not professional designers.
  Now that you’re re designing your kitchen, you may want to look at moving or removing walls in the kitchen, to open up to the rooms adjacent to it. Doors and windows may be moved to improve the space.  Some walls might be structural, but for an additional cost, can be moved by a licensed contractor and it could greatly improve the room.
  Kitchen renovations will improve the value of your home if done right and are an investment.  A good rule of thumb is to spend about 10% of the value of your home in order to get the same if not more money back in the home’s value.
And don’t forget to have fun!!

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Kitchen Design Service On line

Are you remodelling your kitchen? It can be a bit confusing where to start. Choosing some of the colors and door styles is the easy part but what about the floor plan? Is there a better layout? Can I remove a wall and open up into a great room? What about moving my appliances around? These are all good questions.
Consider hiring an independent kitchen designer!
Not in your budget?  How about a kitchen design service on line. For a small fee at JRL Kitchen Design I can produce a professional computerized design. This service is conducted primarily by email and consultation by phone anywhere in Canada. With easy to follow step by step instructions including graph paper that can be printed, you send the measurements and fill out a questionnaire from the site, send it back to me and I send you a full set of drawings including the floor plan, all elevations, a top view and 2-3 dimensional drawings. Even hand drawn details. All printed on 11” x 14” paper and mailed right to your home.
You can then take it to your contractor or kitchen cabinet dealer and there is no intimidation or obligation. All this is done by your home computer and with 3 or 4 quotes you know you can compare apple to apples. This will save money and that's not a bad thing. 
Now you can get back to those colors and door styles!

Visit my website today!