A well-designed kitchen provides adequate space for you, your guests and family members to maneuver without running into one another or bumping into things. You should be able to open the refrigerator and dishwasher completely without hitting anything or anybody. One way to ensure adequate maneuverability in a space is to allow for at least 48 inches between countertops or a countertop and the island. The amount of space dedicated to maneuverability is often dictated by how you use your kitchen, for what purposes and how frequently. A well-designed kitchen is an organized kitchen. Avid or frequent cooks typically enjoy having spices, bottles of vinegar and oils and other frequently-used products near the cooktop or in the area where most meal preparation takes place. Cabinets for dishes and glassware are typically best near the dishwasher.
A well-designed kitchen accounts for appliance dimensions, both big and small. A good rule of thumb is to select appliances before cabinets to help ensure that the dimensions are appropriately configured into the design and avoid the potential of creating obstacles.
Lighting can make or break a kitchen, and there are three types of lights to consider. A well-designed kitchen specifies task lights that shine brightly on surfaces that will be used most often to prepare and cook meals. Ambient lighting provides general illumination, and accent lighting is used to highlight focal points such as keepsakes on open shelves. An effective layered lighting design incorporates different shades, shadows and colors to accentuate the best features of a new kitchen.
Adequate storage is also extremely important. We recommend that homeowners identify the pots, pans, utensils, glassware, plates and small appliances that are used most frequently, intermittently or rarely. This process helps to prioritize storage options and maximize the functionality of the space.
Specifying cabinetry that leverages the utility of wall space helps maximize storage space in smaller kitchens. Depending on the look and feel our clients want to achieve, we will often recommend placing cabinets to the ceiling.
Islands are one of the most requested features of homeowners. They are often not only a focal point of a new kitchen but serve multiple purposes, from meal preparation and entertaining to a place to complete homework. Islands are only practical if there is sufficient space for them. In selecting an island, determine the functions you expect your island to perform and the items you plan to store in it. Some islands can work more efficiently and effectively if you don’t put sinks or appliances in them.
If you would like to know how you can maximize the functionality and beauty of your kitchen space, please give us a call at (574) 533-0597 or send an email to email@example.com
A full kitchen remodel is no simple project. While HGTV, DIY home improvement television shows, social media sites and the Internet are a great source of inspiration, they also are a greater source of misinformation.
Viewers see the entire home renovated in seven weeks, and seven weeks is not a realistic timeframe to completely gut and rebuild a kitchen, yet alone re-do a whole house. The processes omitted on home improvement television shows are the time to select a designer, the design process itself, the development process and decision making. The magazine House Beautiful‘s first-ever kitchen issue, offers a more realistic time frame.
Step 1: Envision Your Dream – Research (3 to 18 months+)
Most of our clients at Leatherman spend months researching different styles, products and design concepts. We encourage this research because it helps save time once moving forward with a renovation. You could create design boards on Pinterest, Houzz.com or your platform of choice, to identify the types of kitchens, layouts and products that you prefer.
Step 2: Create a budget
Regardless of the total cost, it’s important to create a budget. During the research phase you could learn what costs to expect.
Step 3: Select a Showroom and a Designer (1 to 2 months)
An essential service that you should expect from your showroom and designer is to make order out of chaos by discussing your wants, needs, expectations and budget. Expect your showroom and designer to narrow your product choices based on your needs, preferences and budget. This process takes time because there are lots of questions that need to be answered to help your designer better envision what you want and develop the perfect solutions for your project.
Step 4: Develop the Design (5 to 6 weeks)
Based on your input, a designer takes your ideas and expectations and uses them to develop drawings, plans, specifications, perspectives and elevations.
Step 5: Product Selection (4 to 5 weeks)
You should expect your showroom professional to develop a realistic budget and to direct you to products and techniques that represent the best value for your available funds. During this phase of the project, your designer does a deep dive into the details that make all the difference, finalizing material choices and sources and finalizing organization and storage plans.
Step 6: Fabrication and Delivery (2 to 5 months)
The time frame to source and obtain products depends on the design and product selection. Custom-made cabinets take longer to fabricate and deliver than stock cabinets. You should expect your designer and showroom to provide a detailed timeframe for sourcing and obtaining products. Product sourcing should begin before demolition.
Step 7: Demolition and Installation (1 to 9 months)
The timeline depends on the scope of the project. If the design calls for moving electrical, plumbing, ductwork, structural systems, adding additional space, installing new windows and/or doors, the timeframe will take longer than simply replacing what currently exists. You should expect your designer to not only provide a realistic timeline but also offer guidance for creating a make-shift kitchen during the renovation process. The design and product selection should be finalized before demolition begins. Making changes mid-course not only will expand the time necessary to complete the renovation, but changes will also adversely affect your budget.
Step 8: Adding the Finishing Touches (1 week)
This step involves installing window coverings, hanging art on the wall, placing your favorite keepsakes on open shelving and smiling every time you cross the threshold of your brand new dream kitchen.
If you would like to discuss a realistic timeframe for your new kitchen renovation, please give us a call at (574) 533-0597 or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org
What does the new year hold for design trends? Houzz.com recently predicted ten home design trends for 2021. Many of the trends are popular because homeowners in Michiana and across the United States are working from home, schooling from home and continuing to spend most of their days at home.
One trend that we expect not only to continue but also to grow is the multi-functional kitchen. The kitchen is no longer just an area for preparing and eating meals or a central gathering hub. The kitchen now serves as a home office, classroom, study, catering center and refuge. We expect an increasing number of homeowners to be attracted to new kitchens that offer defined areas for baking, meal preparation and snacking or doing homework.
As families are spending more time at home and in their kitchens, they have discovered the need for both functional and aesthetic lighting. A lighting system fits both bills… A light system can come in the
form of Puck lights, Rope lights or tape lighting. They can be plug in, battery operated or hardwired and some have the option to be controlled wirelessly by your smart phone or smart home speaker. The plug
in or battery-operated lights can easily be done by the DIY, but it is recommended that a licensed electrician install the hardwired lighting systems.
Lighting systems can be both functional and aesthetic. They can illuminate a work surface, highlight a beautiful backsplash or highlight the good china and crystal in a glass door cabinet. They can light your way through your kitchen or bath in the dark with toe kick lighting or light up the interior of that junk drawer that we all have.
Similar to kitchens, bathrooms no longer serve utilitarian purposes. COVID-19 has emphasized health and well-being, and homeowners are discovering they can convert their master baths into wellness centers and personal refuges for rest, relaxation, and a place to wash away the stresses of the day.
Remote work and school are not expected to end anytime in the near future and should continue through most of 2021. Homeowners are expected to look to talented designers to create nooks and dedicated spaces for home offices, work nooks and back yard space that can double as a work area or classroom.
Open floor plans that were declining before the outbreak of COVID-19 are expected to continue to wane into 2021. Family members who found themselves having concurrent video conferences quickly discovered the downside of not having walls. Open space is not going away entirely; however, an increasing number of homeowners in Michiana are drawn to sliding doors, interior windows and partitions that can create private spaces.
Backyards are being viewed in an entirely new and exciting light. Homeowners understand the benefit of extending living and working space to outdoor areas. We are seeing designs that include enclosed decks, backyard cottages and even accessory dwelling units that serve as home offices, fitness centers, yoga studios, classrooms and wellness centers.
Color schemes expected to trend in 2021 are shades of brown that include warm taupes, beiges, sand and other earth tones. White continues to be the dominant color for kitchens and baths. Adding a splash of brown as an accent color helps to warm a space.
Homeowners that want to expand their space’s functionality should consider large-format rectangular tiles. Larger format tiles make a smaller space look larger, and they have fewer grout lines, which means less cleaning and cleaner lines. Tile styles that are expected to trends in 2021 include herringbone, stacked and brick, predicts Houzz.
If you want to make your home more functional and more beautiful for the new year, please give us a call at (574) 533-0597 or make an appointment to visit our showroom either virtually or in-person at 2423 Peddlers Village Rd, Goshen, IN 46528.
Backsplashes too often don’t make it to the top of the priority list when renovating their kitchens. Sometimes they are an afterthought. The backsplash serves both a functional and aesthetic purpose. They enable homeowners to protect walls from grease, water and foodstuffs while providing opportunities to make a unique design statement.
Some materials can be better suited for backsplashes than others, but a homeowner’s selection often depends on style preferences, with ease of maintenance coming in a close second. Here are a couple examples of some great backsplash material choices:
Tile (Porcelain, Ceramic or Glass)
- Easy to clean
- Resists heat, water and staining
- Selections – Endless options, a wide range of shapes, colors, and patterns
- Creativity– Homeowners have the ability to put their own creative stamp on their room
- Selections – both Pro and Con here – The sheer number of selections can be overwhelming to some.
- Grout – Though a light-colored grout may look best with a tile choice, it can be difficult to keep clean. Dark colored grout is definitely worth keeping in mind. Sealing the grout or more costly epoxy grout is a stain resistant option.
Stone (Granite, Engineered Stone, Etc.)
- Comes in slab form or tile
- Can be a continuation of the countertop. Cut to extend the natural pattern of the stone top up through the backsplash, which can be the normal 18″ between upper and lower cabinets or to the ceiling behind a stone.
- Stain and scratch resistant (If granite is sealed)
- No grout joints if a slab is chosen
- Price – can be costly. The more exotic the granite, the more the cost goes up.
- Must be sealed
Now, tile and stone are not your only backsplash options. There are many more materials that can contribute to making the kitchen a focal point of the home, but these two options can definitely make a splash!
How about mixing the two? Make a bold statement of a large print granite extending up to the ceiling behind the stove while using a calmer subway tile for the rest of the kitchen.
What backsplash material would enhance the look, feel and functionality of your new kitchen? Give us a call at (574) 533 – 0597 to discuss or make an appointment to visit us at 2423 Peddlers Village Rd
Goshen, IN 46528.
The kitchen is the most important room in the home because it serves as a central hub for cooking, dining, entertaining, chatting, bill paying, internet-surfing, homework, etc. As the central hub and most used room in most homes, it is also the room that needs cleaning most often.
We always ask our clients how they plan to use their new kitchen and how often they prepare meals and entertain. We want to know if anyone in the home truly enjoys cooking and if there are any “foodies” or bakers in the family. This helps us gain an understanding of how the kitchen will function and how often it will need cleaning.
Many homeowners in Michiana are dazzled by smart appliances, quartz and stone countertops, custom cabinetry, statement-making backsplashes, signature lighting, hands-free faucets, and jewelry-like hardware. But, they rarely consider how difficult or easy it is to clean and maintain these dazzling products. Our experienced kitchen designers can direct you to the products that are both attractive and easy to clean.
Homeowners who don’t want to spend a lot of time cleaning their new kitchens should consider appliance surfaces that do not require special cleaning solutions. When looking at ranges, focus on the knobs to determine if there are areas where grease and foodstuffs can get lodged. Consider the spacing. Can you easily use a microfiber between knobs? If not, that range may not be the best choice for your new kitchen. Many of our clients who are avid cooks are attracted to induction cooktops because they are easy to clean and use.
Finishes also need to be considered. Stainless steel appliances are most popular for good reason. They are durable, complement almost any type of cabinet style and color and have long-term staying power. The downside to stainless steel finishes are fingerprints, smudges and the potential for scratches. Some manufacturers offer a smudge-proof option, and black stainless tends to hide fingerprints.
We almost always recommend self-cleaning ovens that use high heat to burn off residue. Steam ovens are also self-cleaning.
Flat-front cabinets are easier to clean than door and drawer fronts adorned with grooves and ridges.
Tile is one of the most popular materials used for backsplashes. If you are concerned with kitchen cleaning, we recommend using larger tiles that minimize the amount of exposed grout. One of the friendliest materials when it comes to cleaning for backsplashes is glass. You can choose almost any color; there’s no grout, and using a standard household glass cleaner is all you will need.
Stone, quartz, stainless steel and engineered quartz are durable, nonporous, stainproof and easy to clean.
Trash and Recycling
Most of our clients welcome trash and recycling containers in pull out cabinets underneath the sink or close to the sink where most clean-up occurs.
Open shelves are increasingly popular because they are budget-friendly, make kitchen space look larger and enable homeowners to showcase collectibles and organize materials. The downside to open shelves is that they are exposed to dust and grime.
What materials, finishes, appliances and surfaces require the least maintenance? Give us a call at 574-533-0597 or make an appointment to visit our showroom and we can offer guidance to create the kitchen of your dreams that is also easy to clean.
Islands are among the most requested features in the kitchens we design. Islands serve multiple purposes: providing a palate for meal preparation, dining, working, a place to do homework and a storage facility. When homeowners request an island, we determine if there is sufficient space, and if not, we recommend alternatives that can provide similar functionality.
In smaller spaces, we can custom design an island to fit the space. Common features may include shallower depths, custom cabinetry and custom height. There is no standard specification that is required to custom design an island. Islands in a kitchen must provide enough space for families to maneuver effortlessly and safely throughout the space. The size, shape and location of the island depend first and foremost on the size of the room and who will use the kitchen and for what purposes. The space between the island and cabinetry is called the clearance zone. The National Kitchen & Bath Association suggests a clearance zone of 42 to 48 inches. If that is not possible, we have designed kitchens with clearance zones of 39 inches. The key is to ensure that base cabinets and appliance doors can open unencumbered. There should be a least three feet between an open door and the island to provide safe travel throughout the kitchen.
The clearance zone and size of the island are also affected by the number of users. If there are only two family members who live in the home, smaller islands and clearances are possible. The rule of thumb in sizing and configuring islands is to factor the homeowners’ functionality and aesthetic dreams into the space’s potential clearance. The bottom line is that islands need to be proportionate to the space.
Some kitchens may not be able to accommodate an island. That does not mean you need to compromise the functionality that an island can offer. Reconfiguring a kitchen space to allow for an open floor plan or physically extending the kitchen space are viable options. Rolling islands are another alternative. We partner with wonderful manufacturers who can custom create a butcher block on wheels.
Peninsulas are another popular alternative to islands. The difference between an island and a peninsula is an island has four sides, and a peninsula is fixed to a wall and only offers three sides. Peninsulas offer an extra yard of space.
Can an island or peninsula work in your dream kitchen? We have templates that you can use to measure your space. Give us a call at (574) 533 – 0597 or make an appointment to visit us at 2423 Peddlers Village Rd, Goshen, IN 46528, here and help make your dream kitchen a reality.