Designing the Perfect Smart Kitchen

For consumers who are excited about the potential of having smart appliances as part of the kitchens in their homes, designing the right space is crucial with the functionality offered by smart appliances in mind. We recommend taking to the internet and checking out trend setting kitchen appliance brands by visiting Samsung’s Virtual Kitchen, LG home appliances to see what these connected devices can do. More and more appliances are being built with IoT features that allow them to be controlled from your tablet or phone.

Connecting Across the Kitchen

There are various options when it comes to kitchen designs with smart appliances but we are seeing the larger appliances using stainless steel and black stainless steel as the two primary colors. So, designers need to blend countertops, cabinets and flooring to offset all those shiny metal finishes. Smaller smart appliances such as coffee pots, blender, and microwaves are now available as smarter devices that take advantage IoT connectivity and digital syncing. These smaller pieces of equipment take on a more traditional look similar to older appliances, although we have seen some very futuristic coffer makers and sleek new dishwashers that show off the new technology contained within.

Modern Design Features

If you appreciate the sophistication of a modern kitchen, you can find many ideas at your local kitchen and bath showroom or swing by the Miele Appliance experience in Princeton. Expect to see lots of reflective surfaces and high-tech materials that truly catch the eye. Bring a pair of sunglasses to reduce the glare. We have found that exotic woods can add extra luxury to a kitchen that is reflecting too brightly. Seating made of polished wood or Lucite is also a popular option. Your modern kitchen designer can make smart appliances look amazing with the right color stain on your custom kitchen cabinets.

 Contemporary Design Options

Those who prefer something more traditional can need only voice your opinion to tone down the shine. Too much connectivity to the internet may lend your home to accessible to unwanted virtual intruders. The kitchen should offer the family comfort and protection from a connected world. In many cases, we design kitchens with modern appliances that function just fine without all that flash.We will feature both polished and casual elements for a beautiful juxtaposition of style. We may disguise your smart oven and hide your refrigerator behind a cabinetry finish, as well as recommend more complementary kitchen appliances. Open space and durable seating works well with a contemporary kitchen.

Smart Appliance Choices

If you want to kit out the room with the best and brightest, you’ll want to splurge on all things connected. To give you some ideas of what might look amazing in your remodeled kitchen, consider visiting with a highly recommended kitchen designer in New Jersey that perhaps a neighbor used.

Putting it All Together

Choosing your favorite design style at a kitchen and bath showroom and then add modern flair by purchasing modern smart appliances. We develop kitchen designs with smart appliances all the time. The secret is in blending and balancing old world with connected world.

Contrast Is the Hottest Trend in High-End Kitchen Remodels

In most parts of the country, housing markets are booming. Smart homeowners realize they can use the equity in their houses to improve the overall value of their residential investment. Of course, few renovations are more advantageous than a kitchen remodel. If you are planning to renovate your home’s nerve center, you should think about contrasting colors when planning your new kitchen design. Here are four reasons contrast is the hottest trend in high-end kitchen remodels.

1. Contrast Is Different

Not many things are more frustrating than spending $50,000 or more on a kitchen renovation only to realize your new space looks like the builder-grade project a friend or neighbor already has. Even if you choose expensive appliances, countertops and finishes, your kitchen may not stand out without something more. Contrasting the colors found in your cabinet’s finish and the colors in your countertops is an excellent way to avoid that just-built, mass-produced look that is common in many homes.

2. Paint Is In

Wooden cabinets will probably always have a place in kitchens. Nonetheless, too much wood can appear dark, heavy and dated. By combining painted kitchen cabinets with wooden furniture, you can give your space a more stylish vibe. Try installing painted lower cabinets and wooden upper cabinets or vice versa to achieve a magazine-ready look. If you are married to the idea of having only wooden cabinets, try painting an island or banquette to achieve the contrast you are looking for.

3.Stone Is Hard To Match

With the elegant appearance and resilient surface of polished stone, marble, granite and even manufactured stone countertops have a place in any renovated kitchen. When looking through stone countertop styles, though, you probably notice that most types are varied and colorful. Matching natural variations is often impossible. When you add some contrast to your kitchen, you don’t have to worry about whether your stone countertops and cabinets match. On the contrary, the more the surfaces don’t match, the more modern your new kitchen looks.

4. Buyers Love It

If you want to list your house for sale, you should consider the real estate competition in your neighborhood. When buyers walk through your house, you want them to be wowed when compared to similar homes. A custom designed kitchen in Princeton NJ that looks and feels customized, will help potential buyers do a double-take when they see your home. If you do it right, don’t be surprised if you receive multiple offers from interested buyers.

Remodeling your home with custom kitchen cabinets is one of the smartest investments you can make. By adding some contrast to your painted kitchen cabinets and the stone countertop style you select, you take advantage of the hottest trend in high-end kitchen remodels. Remember, with a bit of contrast, you can likely create the kitchen of your dreams.

Top 6 Kitchen Design Ideas

In today’s world, your kitchen is the heart of your home. This means you must plan carefully to make sure your kitchen is both conveniently functional and stunningly beautiful. Check out these kitchen design ideas to get inspired!

1. Prioritize Function

Before you get started on completely redesigning your kitchen, make sure you’re putting function first. While having a gorgeous kitchen is important, it needs to be a place you, your family, and your guests can easily navigate. Most importantly, plan your design so you’ll be able to easily move between the fridge, sink, and stove top.

2. Enhance the Surface Space

You can’t ever have too much counter space. Redesign your kitchen with that in mind. Also, choose a surface that’s both visually appealing and easy to use and maintain. However, be aware of the limitations and drawbacks of each counter material. For example, stainless steel may be sleek and easy to clean, but it will accumulate scratches easily. You may love the look of tiles but remember that maintaining the grout can be difficult.

3. Increase Your Storage

The biggest mistake when planning your kitchen is not making sufficient room for storage. Take advantage of all the nooks and crannies in your kitchen. For instance, instead of leaving a dust-collecting gap between your cabinets and the ceiling, put additional overhead cabinets. Consider putting deep drawers that provide easy access to your pots and pans.

4. Design Wide Walkways

Ideally, your paths in your kitchen should be at least 3 feet wide. If you’re going for a larger configuration to accommodate multiple cooks, then they should be 4 feet. When preparing your walkways, adjust your kitchen island designs accordingly.

5. Get Fresh Appliances

You may want to save money by reusing old appliances, but we caution you if they look clearly outdated. You don’t want a sore thumb sticking out in what is otherwise a beautiful kitchen. Get brand new appliances and offset the costs by finding other ways to reduce expenses. For example, you don’t need to spend $100 on drawer handles when traditional kitchen hardware ideas cost less.

6. Don’t Forget the Floor

When you look at a kitchen design photo gallery like this one, you’ll see a lot of cabinets and islands. However, don’t neglect the flooring in your planning process. Consider maintenance, slip-resistance, and porosity. You may love the look of hardwood floors, but they can be slippery and prone to wear & tear near appliances. Hard stone may be a good way to go. Houzz is a great website for kitchen design ideas that won’t break the bank.

7 Bathroom Renovation Ideas for Smaller Bathrooms

Many homeowners have a thousand bathroom renovation ideas for the master bath, but when it comes to the half-bath on the first floor, ideas are often harder to come by. The space is typically small, with limited room in which to get creative. Because of this, homeowners often neglect the little bathroom.

A little thinking outside the box (or outside the bathroom) can shake things up. Here are seven small bathroom design ideas that will get those renovation ideas flowing.

  1. Forget Everything You Know

Many homeowners feel stuck with a small bathroom, unsure how to create a more inviting space. The trick might be to throw out the rulebook. Rather than think of the bathroom as a smaller version of what’s upstairs, homeowners should consider bold colors and wild patterns when designing. A little bit of whimsy can go a long way.

  1. Break the Budget a Little

Make the bathroom a destination for visitors by using more expensive materials, like marble tile or crystal wall sconces. Since the space is small, splurging a bit shouldn’t break the budget. At least not by much.

  1. Take Time to Design Smart Storage Spaces

One way to give a small bathroom the illusion of extra space is to use storage space strategically. Built-in shelving for bathroom necessities will keep the floor clear. A floating vanity, which attaches to the wall and forgoes feet, will give the perception of empty space.

  1. Add a Splash of Color

While a white color scheme suggests clean space, painting with bold, bright colors can create an exciting experience for guests. A green palette in a windowless room can emulate foliage, for example.

  1. Choose Luxurious Materials

If the half-bath includes a shower, consider a floor-to-ceiling glass enclosure. Not only does the glass reflect light and suggest luxury, but because it is see-through, it will make the room appear larger than it is. Equip it with an oversized showerhead and guests may line up outside.

  1. Consider the Renovation a Challenge

If the bathroom budget is small and will only allow for a few items from the kitchen and bath showroom, consider tackling some of the project on your own. Paneled wallpaper and decorative molding is an easy way to create the look of more expensive wood paneling and a chair rail.

  1. Make a New (Floor) Plan

If possible, consider rearranging fixtures to give the bathroom a new look and feel. Consult a professional bathroom designer in NJ to see how difficult it might be to move a toilet or flip a shower. Here are a few more bathroom renovation ideas that may inspire you.

5 Kitchen Design Styles to Consider

Take a look at your kitchen. Does it truly encapsulate who you are as an individual or is it merely a space where you go to cook? When you are consider remodeling your home, the kitchen if often a focal point for many homeowners when entertaining family and friends.Therefore this space should represent your personality from a color and décor perspective.

1. Rustic

Rather than using marble for kitchen countertops, ceramics for flooring and nickel for cabinetry hardware, rustic kitchens typically utilize brick, stone and timber as primary materials. The appliances tend to be more vintage. Many rustic kitchens are equipped with a fireplace, allowing you to stay warm and cozy as you prepare delicious meals and entertain guests.

2. Cottage

Cottage kitchens are often designed to be unpretentious and are great if you want to infuse some life into the room. Open shelving and hardwood flooring are common components of this style. Soft colors, such as yellow and turquoise, help make the space feel airy and light.

3. Mediterranean

The goal of Mediterranean kitchens is to make you feel as though you are in an Italian, Greek or coastal French setting. Rich, warm colors, such as ocean blue, terra cotta and deep reds, are great to incorporate into this type of kitchen. The tiles you install on the floor or backsplash should be more rustic than the patterns you typically find in traditional kitchens. Texture is the name of the game with this styling, making the room truly pop when you turn the corner and see it.

4. Eclectic

With so many kitchen design ideas out there, you may feel tempted to throw everything out the window and opt for something more unusual in style. Eclectic kitchens are perfect for rebels who cannot be pinned down with any label. Eclectic kitchens generally take aspects of other styles, including modern, industrial and French country, into something wholly unique. With an artist’s touch, all these different aspects can come together to complement one another beautifully rather than clash aesthetically.

5. Craftsman

Craftsman kitchens are all about simplicity. They first rose into popularity as a reaction to mass-produced Victorian kitchens, and the Craftsman style sought to bring practicality and simplicity in Americans’ kitchens. Built-in seating and simple lighting make the room easy to navigate. These types of kitchens usually emphasize natural beauty, so rich woods make your kitchen feel lustrous and warm.

If you are on the fence about what you like most, then get in touch with an experienced kitchen designer in North Jersey. A professional can show you numerous kitchen design photos, so you get a few kitchen design ideas that they have done that may coincide with your ideas.

Kitchen Design Software: Free & Paid Versions

Remodeling a kitchen is no easy task, but kitchen design software is making design more accessible to homeowners. Although there isn’t kitchen-specific design software that is free or affordable for a one-time use, you do have some apps that feature a good kitchen design component. Otherwise, your only other option is professional-quality design software, which can cost $1,000 or more. Let’s take a look some of the programs available to homeowners:

Paid Software

1. Encore 3D Home Architect Design Suite

This software costs between $35 and $70. It’s easy to use, which is one of its pros, but it’s not effective enough to hand off to your contractor to use. It’s also not limited to your kitchen, so you can use it for other rooms in your home.

2. Custom Cabinet Software

Cabinets account for about 75 percent of your new kitchen costs, but high-end custom kitchen cabinetry design software can run upwards of $400 per year. If you make cabinets, this software does the job, but for many homeowners, it’s too specialized.

3. Punch! Software Home Design Studio Pro

This almost-professional design software is one of the best on the market, but it does cost $250 or more to use. It does have a learning curve, but most people master it within a weekend of using. With this software, you can almost hand over your design to your contractor and be ready to move forward.

Free Software

1. SketchUp

This design tool is food for all rooms in your home and is truly free. Many home remodelers use this tool. (It does have a Pro version that costs around $700.) You’ll find a lot of support for use, but only peer support.

2. IKEA Home Planner

Home Planner used to be a tool only for kitchen design, but it has expanded its scope. Make sure to set up an account before creating a plan, because it’s been known to delete plans that were set up without an account. This software is great for cabinet placement.

3. Prodboard

Prodboard is Ukraine-based, but it does have a lot of nice functions. There is a dedicated closet planner, which is uncommon in most 3d home design software tools. You have to use Prodboard on the company site, and you cannot purchase products. However, it is completely free to use.

As with most products, you get what you pay for. Even with kitchen design software, it’s still a good idea to work with a kitchen designer in North Jersey to make sure you’re staying within good design parameters that may not be addressed by the software tools for home users. We recommend you work with a kitchen designer for quality custom kitchen cabinetry design that is familiar with the kitchen design software you have been playing around with. Perhaps together you can craft a kitchen you will love.

Kitchen Flooring – When to Use Wood vs. Ceramic Tile

Some homeowners want to renovate a kitchen immediately after moving into a new home. Others want to remodel after getting tired of the same old kitchen for years. Either way, there are numerous options, and you should seriously consider what your kitchen designer recommends. Often just changing the flooring if it is old and worn is enough to revitalize your kitchen. So this post discussed the benefits of either hard wood floors or ceramic tile floors in the kitchen.

Wood

Hardwood flooring has been used in kitchens for as long as they have been building homes for its durability and availability. It maintains its high-quality appearance for years as long as you maintain it with some deep cleaning every few months and a urethane coating for protection. It also maintains an almost timeless quality provided you select the right materials initially. When you renovate a kitchen, you may want to think about resale value and what other buyers are going to like. Hardwood is a solid option that stands up to the test of time. However, it does cost a little more than option flooring options with some reports averaging it costs between $5 and $8 per square foot plus the installation costs.

Ceramic

Ceramic is highly resistant against water due to the protective glaze the tiles receive following installation. Similar to hardwood, it is extremely durable, and tends to lasts over 20 years after installation or longer depending upon the quality of the tile and how well it is installed. One huge advantage is that there are many options in regards to color, style, motif that you can select from where hardwood is limited to the shades of wood stain you can select from. You can decide how big you want the tiles to be and what shape they come in. One consideration is that they do tend to get a little cold around winter if you choose not to have radiant heat under the tiles.

When Is Each One Best?

While you should follow the advice of your kitchen designer in North Jersey, you ultimately want to pick flooring for that can repel stains when a glass of red wine falls and can hold up to heavy traffic. It may help to look at photos of kitchen flooring to help you make up your mind. Sometimes photos can suggest what you should not do.

If you want to remodel your kitchen to make your house easier to sell, then hardwood is a good choice because it does raise the resale value in most cases. However, if you plan on living in your house for a while and want something that captures your spirit and personality, then ceramic tiles may be the way to go. Listen to what your kitchen designer recommends, and then follow your own intuition so that you get the most out of your next renovation.