Archive for the ‘Design Tips’ Category
The Resurgence of Brass
Earlier this month, the Washington Post reached out to Jennifer Howard of JWH Design & Cabinetry about an emerging—or more specifically, reemerging—kitchen design delicacy. Brass fixtures have significantly grown their presence in the modern kitchen, and for good reason.
“The resurgence of brass in home design is bringing a new level of warmth back to kitchens,” says Howard.
This article by Megan McDonough presents a selection of “splurge” and “save” design options. Selected by Howard and the JWH Team, these design ideas are coupled with both pricing and sources. They’re fun ideas for homeowners so that they, too, can add a creative touch of brass to their kitchens.
Stainless steel and chrome fixtures in the kitchen have taken a back seat to another alloy. In comparison to its two-compound cousins, brass proves to be a more durable option. Brass faucets will resist calcium and soft water corrosion. Their lifespan and functionality will exceed that of the ever popular stainless steel and chrome faucets.
Beauty & The Beast
Alongside anchor-strength, aesthetics plays a large role in the reemergence of brass in kitchens. This is why we are now seeing brass fixtures explode onto different facets of the kitchen; breaking the rule of the many traditional kitchen accessories.
The softness of brass subtly reflects a warm environment back into the kitchen. Brass has a richness that plays beautifully with contrast when paired with other kitchen appliances. With a smooth and sleek posture, brass is a brilliant way to splash bits of visual effect throughout an outdated kitchen. Isn’t it ironic how something that has for so long been associated with antique is now revered as a staple in kitchen modernity?
Whether it be cabinet fixtures, light fixtures, or even flashy drink coasters, brass will grab eyes while offsetting tones of a cooler nature; stainless, white, and grey shades. It is no wonder that brass fixtures are currently exploding in home design. With the alloy’s beastly strength and its luxurious glow, this kitchen design delicacy is truly the kitchen’s new beauty and the beast.
We have all heard the saying, “Home is where the heart is.”
But where, exactly, is the heart of the home? What corridor pumps life into this beloved sanctuary? In which room do delicious feasts originate, ready to spread joy and life to eager smiles? Where do friends and loved ones gather for cherished moments of laughter and great meals? Home is a place where everyone is family, where love lurks in every crevice. The special place where the days start and end with nourishing meals for hungry souls. The heart of the home is surely the kitchen.
With each new year, dedicated designers strive to bring art and genius together for an innovative display of the latest design trends. Whether it be color, lighting, or storage, each year brings the opportunity to invigorate and improve the design world. We are excited to show you what the kitchen’s got cooking for 2018.
Black and White Still Equals Gray
The dance between black and white continues to be a staple in kitchen trends. The bold contrast between the two shades brings both harmony and balance. The two pallets have always been a classic match, and their blended shades continue to thrive as a popular kitchen trend. The wide ranges of grays, updated up with subtle undertones of color, are part of Farrow & Ball’s “new neutrals” collection. Beautifully coordinated palettes, act as backdrops for contrasting punches of color. As gray evolves into the world of innovation, color trends may have a new king this year.
Storage, Space, and Sanity
Clutter undoubtedly slows us down. It is hard to function efficiently when the gears in your life are clogged. An environment plagued by clutter has been linked to depression, anxiety, and even memory loss! Having a kitchen with inefficient storage or space usage will surely end in a messy nightmare.
No matter the size of the family, or the size of the kitchen, storage is a concern in every kitchen. That’s why it is no surprise that innovative, sleek, and storage efficient multi-tiered drawers continue as a growing kitchen trend. These beautifully crafted designs don’t just capture the eyes, they capture the clutter.
Clutter does not just come in the form of stuff, but it also walks as general structures (i.e. too many people in your work zone!) Creative space planning has always been the key to improving flow and function, and will always be in style.
Mix It Up!
One current kitchen trend that we especially love designing is the mixture of different materials for cabinets, countertops, and metals. A sparkling quartz slab brushing up against a textured oak will warm up any kitchen and offers practicality and a touch of bling. Hints of brass cabinetry hardware compliment the clean aesthetics of stainless appliances. The balance of elements makes for inviting partnerships for a unique and personalized result. The more the merrier.
Contrast a Story
Contrast is everything, and when correlated to light, a story begins to unfold. Abstract shapes that lay stamped on the floor begin to swirl and hypnotize with astonishment, as contemporary wood grain melts from a solid black marble. Traditional methods of brickwork splice majestically with modernism when introduced with a new pattern. As all are absorbed and reflected off the calming white hues that surround the scene, this kitchen trend could be on Broadway!
Cherish Your Heart
As passionate designers, our eyes brim with excitement each year with the coming of new kitchen trends. The innovations in technology and artistic vision are gems that we hold close to our hearts, and such things fuel our dedication to achieve exquisite form and innovative function in each and every custom cabinet.
The kitchen is the home of the heart, so let us cherish it like our own.
Appliances are always a big decision in any new Kitchen project. Refrigerators are getting larger, freezers have become separate units, two dishwashers are more common, and of course, there is the fabulous range that wants to be center stage. So what best compliments that large mass of (expensive) equipment below? The hood above becomes a more important decision than most people realize.
Stainless is an easy choice to match the range below, but many people don’t want one more piece of stainless in the Kitchen and find it more visually pleasing to join the side cabinetry with a custom wood hood. Designed to fit the space perfectly and built to accommodate a powerful motor, the wood hood becomes a hardworking, functional and beautiful part of the overall ambiance of the Kitchen.
A Splash of Today & Yesterday
Designed for a vintage home in Rye, NY, this wood hood needed to blend the charm of yesteryear with the function and efficiency of today’s modern kitchens. Located over a Thermador range, the hidden Thermador insert provides all the power needed to fully vent the space. It also remains disguised in the matching cabinetry style of the room. Trying to balance the required hood size while minimizing the visual mass, the radius shelves on the sides allow for convenient storage while also creating a softer look. Side pull-outs next to the range keep the essential spices and spices close at hand for the cook.
For help designing the best look and function for your kitchen, the JWH Team offers expert advice and creative solutions.
Testing & Waiting
It’s an ongoing challenge to learn about the “new” LED (light-emitting diode) products. Finding the right fixtures with the right features is not an easy task. As much as designers (and homeowners) wanted to trade in their incandescent and halogen bulbs, good LED products were not ready for the design demands of the kitchen and bath industry.
Choosing the right color produced by an LED has been a big battle between designers who want the best color for the setting and the companies producing the options. Since the color of the light corresponds to the energy of the photon and the energy band gap of the semiconductor (technical factors over which we have no control), we had to wait to see what products would be introduced. So we tested, we waited, we tested, and we waited some more.
Let There Be LED Light!
Finally, the waiting is over! Now we are specifying LED lighting for the whole house, and not just the undercabinet, in-cabinet, and accent lighting in the kitchen. The lower energy consumption, low heat emission, long life (30,000 hours of more!), durability, and small sizes allow us to incorporate lighting into fun and functional spots. We can open the corner base cabinet to illuminate the often-hidden contents, or under a “floating vanity” to create a warm ambiance and a helpful nighttime glow. Possibilities go as far as along the front of open shelves for those hard-to-read book titles.
The color varies from warm to cool: 2700-3000k is considered warm and 3600-5500k are cool. I have yet to see anything above 2700k that is warm enough for our liking! But at least the range allows us to select the light output that best suits the task and setting. A few added benefits: the cost is reasonable, the wiring and installation are relatively easy, and you won’t be changing any bulbs!
Hope this helps!
6 Creative Kitchen Storage Solutions
There’s nothing quite like opening a cabinet door to grab a dash of kosher salt for your charcuterie and finding everything is in its proper place. The hallelujah chorus faintly playing in the background, you close the cabinet door and walk away feeling that all is right in the world. When it comes to keeping order in the kitchen, getting a little creative with storage is key. These six simple and effective storage tips will have you on your way to keep your kitchen running like a well-oiled machine.
Hide Appliances & Utensils
It’s the first rule in Kitchen Organization 101: The less “stuff” stored on the counter, the cleaner your kitchen will feel. Hide larger appliances like toasters, stand mixers, and food processors behind an appliance garage door. Stash dishwashing materials behind closed doors. Or add a narrow pullout under the sink to cleverly store dish soap, scrubbers, sponges, and towels.
If you’re a baker, you likely have a few oddly shaped mixing blades for your Kitchen Aid Mixer. For utensils that don’t typically fit into a drawer, save space by hanging them from small hooks inside your cabinet. The idea is to make your life easier by finding convenient ways to access your most-used utensils and alleviate clutter.
Add Storage to an Island
An island serves as an anchor for your entire kitchen. It provides extra workspace, storage space, and eating space. To maximize the functionality of your island, try including an under-counter beverage refrigerator, deep drawers to store pots and pans, and even a butcher block built into the countertop for knife and utensil storage.
Boost Space with Baskets
In the event that you run out of drawer or cabinet space, never fear, because baskets are here to save the day! Use the brilliance of a basket to neatly organize towels, snacks, and utensils without adding additional clutter to counter spaces. Artfully arrange fresh fruits in a countertop basket for a two-fold reward. The result? More storage space and an aesthetically pleasing enhancement to your eating area. Exquisite and innovative!
Add an Extra Pantry
Is your pantry bursting at the seams? Or do you not have a pantry at all? Nonetheless, there is a surprising way to add a storage area. Utilizing the empty space alongside the refrigerator to create a vertical organizer is aesthetic and efficient. A tall pullout with shelves allows for added storage space for snacks, spices, utensils, and whatever else you need to stash in a pinch.
Take a Lazy Susan Spin
Despite her name, Susan is anything but lazy. This brilliant kitchen standby has saved the masses from emptying entire cabinets when trying to get to an item in the back. Thus, a Lazy Susan works wonders for making essentials easy to find. So, instead of consigning this spinning wonder to a deep cabinet, add one to the pantry for simple retrieval of kitchen utensils.
If you’re ready for a custom solution to your storage needs, call the experts at JWH Design & Cabinetry. Our Team specializes in space planning with 20 years of experience designing fabulous kitchens, family spaces, libraries, and baths. Browse our Design Portfolio to see our custom cabinetry projects and let us help you turn your dreams into reality.
4 Eco-Friendly Kitchen Updates
Are you looking to update your kitchen to a more energy-efficient and eco-friendly space? Look no further! Going green with your remodeling project means you’re trading up your current design for a healthier, energy-conserving, and ecologically responsible model. Here are a few ways to incorporate eco-friendly elements into your kitchen design.
Sure, we all want to reduce energy consumption and save on utility costs. Choosing Energy Star products is one surefire way to get energy-efficient models that both test and rate for efficiency. To have an Energy Star model, appliances must be 25% more efficient than the federal standards for energy consumption. Some states offer rebates for purchasing Energy Star appliances. The two price tags on every appliance are the purchase price and the operation cost. However, the results have a ripple effect where the consumer saves money on operating costs by reducing energy use without compromising the performance of the appliance. Two examples of this win-win situation:
- Replacing an old refrigerator with an updated Energy Star refrigerator could save you up to $260 in energy costs over the next 5 years.
- An Energy Star dishwasher will save you dollars and about 3870 gallons of water over its lifetime!
Green countertops come in a plethora of designs, but always share the core values of being an eco-friendly manufacturing process while maintaining sustainable content and high durability. A recycled paper countertop is made of 100 percent postconsumer recycled paper and petroleum-free resin and pigment. Nonetheless, the latter gives a soapstone look with a superior heat-resistant quality. Salvaged wood can add a historic flavor and character, making for a great island centerpiece. Butcher block can make great use of repurposed materials since it is composed of smaller bits of wood. Bamboo is a rapidly renewable resource, and it’s a very hard and strong wood. Thus, bamboo is an ideal choice for counter spaces.
Because of it’s one of the fastest-growing plants on earth, there is always a surplus of bamboo, thus, making this option ecologically friendly. This flooring is relatively easy to maintain because it’s water resistant and extremely durable. Cork flooring has unparalleled thermal and acoustical qualities. It is warm to the touch and cushiony to walk on. Thus, cork adds to that an earthy visual texture and the insulating qualities of carpet. It’s no wonder cork is becoming a go-to choice for eco-friendly flooring.
Green cabinetry used to be limited to modernized bamboo boxes. However, these days, there are a variety of eco-friendly cabinet options available. Sustainable kitchen cabinets feature formaldehyde-free glues and finishes with low volatile, organic compounds that give off low or no toxic fumes. Work closely with your designer to find a cabinet that offers sustainable manufacturing methods and that uses environmentally responsible products.
If you’re ready to make the switch to a healthier, energy conserving and eco-friendly space, JWH Design has the expertise and knowledge to help your kitchen live up to its true potential, adding value to your home and the environment.
Small Kitchen Updates With Maximum Impact
Do you love your kitchen, yet long for a more updated space? We understand why you want it to look its best! When a total kitchen reboot is not a possibility, a few of these modest updates are just enough to bring your kitchen to the next level.
It is easy to jump on the latest color trends without making an all-in commitment. A coat of paint on the walls, the inside of a glass cabinet, and even colorful accessories can keep your style looking current and fresh. A quick trip to HomeGoods could be just the pick-me-up your kitchen needs.
Update the Lighting
Lighting is always a focal point, whether intended or not. If the lighting in your kitchen is subpar or outdated, do something to change it! Replacing an overhead light fixture is much easier than you may think. Online sources are endless for a contemporary chandelier, colorful pendants, and even industrial-style track lighting. Size and scale are important, so it is important to verify these details before ordering. Fixtures cannot be returned after being installed, and even before installation, the return costs can be startling. But the addition of new lighting will add ambiance, warmth, and character to your kitchen—go for it!
Put a Rug on It
While the kitchen isn’t the first place you think to add a rug, that does not mean they don’t come with plenty of advantages. If your kitchen is predominantly neutral, a brightly patterned rug could be all you need to add a pop of color to an otherwise lackluster space. If you have a sleek and modern kitchen, adding a textured rug can add much-needed warmth and visual dimension. In front of the sink, an easily washable rug adds some cushion and catches water which protects both your feet and your floors. In other areas, a good vacuum should be enough to keep an area rug in shape. Houzz often has well-priced rugs with free shipping. It’s worth a try!
It’s all in the details. Swapping out something as seemingly insignificant as cabinet knobs and drawer pulls can create a huge impact. If your cabinets are adorned with ho-hum contractor grade pulls, now may be a great time to upgrade to something a little more modern and unique to your style. When replacing single knobs on doors, you may have the option of adding a second hole for a pull. If you are replacing pulls, it is important to measure the “center-to-center” distance of the screw heads on the back side. (Filling and re-drilling holes will take some of the fun out of this otherwise-quick upgrade.)
Add a Fresh Coat of Paint
Nothing says “update” like a fresh, new paint job. Whether you’re sticking with the same color or trying out an out-of-the-box bright, painting is one of the easiest and most affordable ways to instantly transform your cooking space. A bay leaf green is great for most neutral spaces, while a cool, sea-breeze color brings the beach indoors. Paint an accent wall in an unexpected hue or use wallpaper with a bold print to add a spark to an otherwise neutral setup. Checking out the Pantone or Benjamin Moore Color of the Year could give you trendy inspiration. And the new ColorSnap app by Sherwin-Williams makes it fun to try out different color options without investing in the sample jars.
Cabinetry painting is a little trickier, and best left for the professionals to avoid a chipping mess. But if you have good quality wood cabinets, this is a route worth exploring for a total update to your kitchen.
Looking to take on a larger project? The JWH Design & Cabinetry Team comes armed with creative design expertise to improve layout, function, flow and long-term value of your kitchen remodel project. Designing with high-quality custom cabinetry, we can fully execute our creative “out-of-the-box” space planning, interior design and kitchen cabinetry solutions. Contact us today and find out how we can help you realize your kitchen remodeling dreams!
A Safe Home for the Visually Impaired
A common disability among seniors is failing vision. If you have a senior loved one coming to live with you, you may feel overwhelmed by all the upcoming changes. However, there is good news!
There are many simple accommodations that can be made to ensure that a person with a vision issue will be safe and comfortable in your home. Start with the small things and work your way up.
The first step is to sit down and work out what your loved one’s daily activities will be within the home. Take a look at each room carefully and identify things that might become tripping hazards. For example, a turned-up corner of a throw rug or the spindly leg of a chair. Think about lighting, organization, and how to find important items with ease.
The following enlighten some of the best ways to get started.
Don’t forget the exterior
When you think about making modifications to your home for a visual impairment, you might be thinking solely of the interior. However, the outside of your house may need some work, too. If there are steps, they need to be marked with reflectors or painted with a bright color for easy navigation. Your address should be easily visible from the street or brightly painted on the mailbox. Small, solar-powered lights should be added to walkways and around steps.
Check out your lighting
The lighting in your home should be functional as well as help provide safety. Add floor lamps, wall fixtures, and battery-operated lights to closets, dark hallways, stairways, and any other areas that don’t get much natural light. Keep windows open as much as possible or get sheer curtains to let in natural light. The latter is preferable for many individuals living with a vision impairment.
Think about flooring
While hardwood or laminate flooring is preferable for individuals with a disability, it may not be feasible for everyone. Nonetheless, carpeting should be in good shape, and throw rugs should be replaced or tacked down well to the floor. Rugs should never be placed near stairs.
In the bathroom
The bathroom is one of those places where the most accidents can occur. This is why it’s very important to make it as safe as possible. Grab bars should be installed in the shower, and non-slip mats should be placed in the bathtub and on the bathroom floor.
It’s also a good idea to paint the walls a contrasting color behind the sink and toilet to make them easier to see. Many bathrooms are equipped with white-on-white fixtures, so having a dark color behind them will help your loved one navigate more easily.
Each room in your home should be free of clutter, especially walkways and hallways. Push furniture back against the wall and refrain from keeping things on the floor unless absolutely necessary. Let your family know that they’ll need to be responsible for cleaning up after themselves. Leaving items on the floor or on the stairs is a huge NO-NO.
Author: Jackie Waters (Hyper-Tidy.com)
4 Ways to Incorporate Custom Cabinetry into Your Home Design
When it comes to custom cabinetry, why should kitchens have all the fun? From increasing productivity in your home office to eliminating chaos in your laundry room, cabinets are a great way to not only get organized but add a stylish flair. With custom cabinetry, you can get exactly what you want – form and function. Here are a few ideas:
Working from a home office has become a major part of life for many of us. Whether we are telecommuting, running a company, or simply paying the bills, we could all use a useful, efficient space to take care of business.
For some, this could mean a simple desk and chair in a quiet corner; but many of us would like the same comforts in our office that we find in the rest of our home. This includes comfy seating, room to move, and functional storage solutions. A customized set of wall cabinets allows you to tuck supplies, files, and clutter behind closed doors while adding to the overall appeal of the room. Your home office should reflect the same design of the rest of your home while affording you the luxury of burning the midnight oil in comfort.
If you have little ones, you know that their play areas can become cluttered and messy in no time. While a playroom is a welcome addition to the home, it’s also one of the most difficult rooms to keep organized. Toy boxes and flimsy shelving can only handle so much. The ultimate storage solution is a set of quality cabinets that can stand up to the years of wear and tear from the little chaos-makers. Install cabinetry to neatly stack books and games, add baskets and bins for dolls and Legos, and make it easy for those tiny hands to find their favorite toys. You’ll thank your lucky stars for the increased organization and the easy cleanup at the end of the day!
Sure, many of your guests will never darken the door of your laundry room, but that doesn’t mean it’s any less important to keep organized. Few things give the laundry room a finished look better than wall cabinets. Just think how great it would be to stow all those detergents, dryer sheets, soaps, and bleach out of sight. In addition to adding storage space, cabinets add beauty and style to this unassuming room of the house. To further increase storage, custom cabinets can be made floor-to-ceiling to keep brooms and mops, stow seasonal items, and hide holiday decorations until next year.
In this age of DIY, many of us have taken on creative hobbies, whether it’s scrapbooking, jewelry making, painting, or sewing. Similar to a home office, a craft room is often an overlooked luxury. Ditch the card table in the corner for a stylish and inspiring room in which you can create magic. A set of custom cabinets tailored to your specific craft is the perfect solution for organizing your supplies, de-cluttering countertops or tabletops and creating a feel-good space for you to work in. There’s really no better way to invest in your creative side.
There is no project too large or challenging for the JWH Design Team; in fact, we like to say, “the more challenging the better.” If you’re toying with the idea of adding cabinetry to your home design, let us help make an amazing transformation to your abode.
Looking for a quick and painless way to transform your living space from ho-hum to dazzling? Add some color with these bold color trends! Whether it’s a brightly patterned armchair or an unexpected accent of coral on a dining room wall, a splash of color has a way of converting the bland to bubbly. You may not want to paint an entire room in trendy colors like acid green or amethyst, so we’ve come up with these four sneaky ways to incorporate color into your home design without going overboard.
Punch up the front door
Your front door is the first thing people see when entering your home and their last impression as they bid goodbye. Your front door is quite literally the portal into your abode that almost every guest will pass through. So why keep it standard and boring? Let your front door be the piece that sets the stage for the rest of your home. From cool turquoises to heritage red, the front door is a statement piece in its own right. Decide what color best represents your interior design scheme, and go from there!
Add new life to bookshelves
We all have a set of bookshelves somewhere in the home. Whether your book collection is found in a standalone unit or books are displayed on built-in wall shelving, you probably haven’t put much thought into making them over. From colorful paint to funky wallpaper, updating the back of your display cases is an unexpected way to add color to an otherwise neutral design scheme. Choose a color that matches the room’s theme; keep it more conservative with a muted ombre grayscale or really liven it up with brightly painted rainbow hues. This update is a quick and simple way to change the feel of an entire room.
Don’t forget the ceiling
We’ve all come to expect an accent wall incorporated somewhere in a home’s design scheme. However, a painted or patterned ceiling is a design aspect that feels a little less expected, since most of us choose to stick with the safe choice of a white ceiling. It’s easy to increase personality in your living space without completely changing your current setup:
-add drama to a stark white kitchen with a dark gray or navy ceiling.
-a brightly colored ceiling is perfect for bathrooms with monochromatic finishes.
-metallic colors add depth and a reflective quality, opening up smaller spaces.
Swap out the sink.
What’s the one element in your kitchen or bathroom that just ties everything together? If you can’t think of one, maybe it’s time to upgrade the sink. Yes, the sink. While most home designs stick with safe neutral basins, an unexpected pop of color in the sink can create a look that is sophisticated, playful or nostalgic that you just can’t get from a white scheme. From the red-orange or robin egg blue retro to the ultra-refined look of an iron-cobalt, the sink is a surprising spot to add a splash of color.
Looking to start a project? At JWH Design & Cabinetry, we bring our creativity and expertise to projects of all sizes and styles. Every client and every job is unique to JWH and receives the individual attention it deserves. Call for a consultation today!