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.
Bathrooms, especially the master bath, can serve as an in-home spa where homeowners in Michiana can spend a few minutes of every day just to themselves, devoid of texts and tweets, to recharge their batteries and wash away the stresses of the day. Functionality, efficiency and beauty are givens in today’s new bathrooms. To create a bathroom that meets your unique needs, consider the following features as must-haves.
Homeowners should make windows, skylights or even glass doors requirements for any renovation. Natural light makes a space more welcoming. It also has therapeutic benefits that include boosting vitamin D that helps prevent bone loss and reduces the risk of heart disease, weight gain and various cancers, according to healthline. Plus, natural light puts people in a better mood and improves sleep. That’s why we consider natural light a must for any renovation.
Linear drains make curbless showers an accessible option for almost everyone’s home. Curbless showers provide homeowners with a blank canvas. The shower space does not need to be enclosed and can help make a smaller space more functional, appear larger and more aesthetically pleasing. Curbless showers do not require a threshold, making shower access easier for those who are mobility-impaired and those who may be aging in place or planning to do so. In curbless showers with linear drains, floor covering only needs to be pitched in one direction. This provides homeowners with unlimited options when selecting the size and composition of their floorcovering. Another advantage is that linear drains do not limit customers to 4 by 4-inch tile or stone.
A bathroom should not be the first thing you see when you enter a home, walk into a bedroom or leave a kitchen or dining room. If possible, do not position a bathroom in a location with direct sightlines from the kitchen, living room or dining room.
Water Closet Location
The same sightline principle that applies to other rooms in the home applies to the location of the toilet in the bathroom. The water closet should not be the first fixture that you see when entering the bath. Space permitting, we often recommend a separate enclosure for the water closet. Not only does it take the toilet out of a line of sight, but it also provides users with privacy.
You don’t need to have the biggest bath in the neighborhood to have the best performing bath for your family’s needs. You can create an exceptional bath in a relatively small space. We know how to specify products that make smaller spaces appear larger. We know how to create in-home spas with multi-functional shower systems, therapies that can relax tired muscles, rejuvenate skin tone and contribute to your health and wellbeing. Size may be a challenge but never an obstacle to creating the bath of your dreams.
If you would like to discuss how a new bathroom can make your life better and more enjoyable, give us a call at (574) 533-0597 or send us a contact form.
We’ve entered the second half of 2020 and want to share the design trends that stood out during the first half of the year in Michiana.
Split finishes are in vogue in everything from plumbing fixtures and appliances to door and cabinet hardware. We’ve seen ear-to-ear smiles when we present combination black and gold finishes to our clients. Specifying gold refrigerator pulls on a matte black refrigerator creates a dramatic and refined focal point in any kitchen. We also have had an extremely positive reception pairing black and silver tones in all design motifs – traditional, transitional and contemporary.
Mixed materials is another trend in new kitchens and baths. Combining metal, stone, wood and glass are on point for many homeowners and builders. Imagine an island that features an engineered stone top contrasted with two-tone wood paneling and a matte black sink with gold-finished faucet. Simply gorgeous.
Similar to mixing materials is specifying contrasting colors. Different colored upper and lower cabinets continue to gain in popularity.
Functional furniture is also making a new home in kitchens and baths. Homeowners in Michiana warmly respond to suggestions for desk space, separate storage cabinetry and pantries, open shelving and other solutions that are more reminiscent of furniture found in other places in the home than traditional kitchen cabinetry.
White kitchen cabinetry continues to rank as the number one preference in homes. However, we see white trending in other materials and fixtures beyond cabinetry. White finished appliances, split chrome and white faucetry and split white toned lighting make for a dramatic statement in any kitchen. Other trending colors for finishes in kitchens and baths include champagne, bronze, gray, gold and black.
Your new kitchen has to look out-of-this-world and serve multiple purposes and functions, spanning from the space where meals are prepared to a central gathering place for family and friends. A well-designed kitchen combines stylish aesthetics with durable and functional finishes and materials.
How can you capitalize on new design trends to create the kitchen or bath of your dreams? Give us a call at (574) 533-0597 or contact us to make an appointment to visit our showroom.