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.


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 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.

White Kitchen Cabinets Are Still Trendy

White Kitchen CabinetsFor homeowner’s looking to increase resale value, remodeling a kitchen makes sense. Still, swapping out old appliances, bad cabinets, and worn flooring requires a huge commitment. Unless you are planning to put your house on the market for sale immediately, you must live with the design choices you make. How are you to choose which cabinets to use? For virtually any space, white kitchen cabinets designed to fit your décor are still trendy. Here are a few reasons you can’t go wrong when you install white kitchen cabinetry.

Increase Visual Space

In many homes, kitchens seem dark and uninviting. When you look at most designer kitchen designs, by contrast, each room appears larger and brighter than they actually are. There is a reason designer kitchens look so great. In those rooms, white cabinets increase the perception of the visual space of the area. Since your eye doesn’t get caught up looking at dark wood or shadows, it focuses on other design elements in the room.

Promote Cleanliness

Whether you are a neat freak or not, you want your kitchen to look and feel clean. Since white is the color of cleanliness, white kitchen cabinets designed to fit help give your food preparation space a sanitary feel. Despite scrubbing, darker stained wood cabinets can often seem dull. Don’t let your guests think your kitchen is unclean. Instead, choose white cabinets to set a tidy tone for your home’s nerve center.

Complement Other Elements

If you’ve found the perfect slab of granite or the right refrigerator for your new kitchen, you may be concerned about cabinets clashing. That’s for good reason. If you choose too many bold elements for your new room, you risk getting a kitchen that looks busy and cluttered. When you opt for white cabinets, you can complement other design elements much better. Rather than having cabinets that contrast greatly with flooring, countertops, appliances, and other things, choose white and remove some of the clutter from your remodeled kitchen.

Invest in the Future

With a fresh coat of paint, white kitchen cabinets don’t show their age like other types of cabinets. Whether you plan to sell your house soon or own it forever, you can be certain your designer kitchen designs that include white cabinets will retain their designer, high-end look. Even better, if you decide to change design elements in the future, you will find that your white cabinets will be much more flexible with your new décor.

If you are considering remodeling your kitchen, you don’t have to be afraid of design commitments. By working with the right kitchen designer in Hamilton, NJ, invite the designer to suggest a few options of white kitchen cabinet designs. Two great minds work better than one.

Kitchen Designs That Seniors Appreciate Most

Kitchen Design For SeniorsWhile everyone has their own unique style when it comes to interior decorating, special considerations have to be made when it comes to designing an interior spaces for senior citizens that may struggle with tasks once considered easy. Not only should the home be visually appealing, it should be functional and made according to the unique needs of an aging body. Kitchens, in particular, often have to undergo the most alterations to adequately provide senior citizens with a comfortable and safe space. Learn the basics of a solid age in place kitchen design.


Individuals in wheelchairs need lower counters to feel comfortable while in the kitchen. Additionally, cabinets, appliances and everything else on the counters needs to be positioned so that someone in a wheelchair can easily reach everything without overexerting themselves. There are also special cabinet handles that can be installed to help those who have trouble with arthritis.


Just like counters, sinks might need to be lowered for senior citizens. Those in wheelchairs are sure to appreciate sinks with a roll-under design that makes it easier for them to be used while a person is in a wheelchair. Besides roll-under sinks, installing a motorized sink is another good idea. Such sinks allow a person to adjust the height of the sink to one that suits them best.


Appliances included in an age in place kitchen design should have a universal design. They should also be easy to use and understand and include convenient features. For instance, refrigerators with side-by-side doors are commonly easier for senior citizens to use. It’s also best to go with a model with the ice and water dispensers on the outside of the door. Also, it’s a good idea to aim for energy efficient kitchen designs to save money, which is great for everyone involved.


Floor material in kitchens frequently used by seniors should be slip- and skid-resistant. While it’s often easier to simply add a rug or two to the kitchen floors, senior citizens can easily trip over them, which can lead to the very accidents you want to prevent. It’s best to simply opt for slip-resistant flooring.


It’s especially important to have proper lighting in a kitchen design for seniors. High light output LED bulbs are the way to go to keep elderly individuals from squinting and straining their eyes. Accent lights could be added over the sink and under cabinet kitchen lighting is helpful to keep seniors from having to turn on all the lights when it’s not necessary to do so.

A well-thought out age in place kitchen design makes life easier for senior citizens, and it’s great for their sense of independence. Let us know if you need help implementing these ideas.

Faucets & Fixtures That Liven Up a New Kitchen

Kitchen FaucetWhether you are building a new home or remodeling your current one, you have the opportunity to incorporate popular trends to suit your lifestyle and your aesthetic pleasure. More fixtures used throughout the home these days are geared towards new technology that offer better function, while at the same time giving you choices for the look you want. Take kitchen faucets, for example; you have more options than ever to add beauty while taking away a bit of the work. These kitchen hardware ideas may spark your creativity when you select fixtures for your new kitchen.

Fabulous Features

It’s time to make your kitchen faucet earn its keep! Today’s fixtures can do more than let water flow. These faucet ideas may appeal to you:

  • Pot fillers: tall faucets extended 8 inches higher than most faucets or an additional wall mount can make filling a large stock pot easier.
  • Pull-out faucets: these can be used in place like a regular faucet or pulled away from the main hardware to be used as a sprayer for rinsing..
  • Aeration faucets: you can reduce your water usage with faucets that add air flow to a reduced water flow to keep water pressure the same. This idea is great from our eco-friendly kitchen designer.
  • Motion sensors-faucets with a hands-free motion detector will only activate when it detects hands or objects under the faucet. This wastes less water for hand washing sinks.

Fancy Finishes

Remember when kitchen faucets were only chrome? Today you have a slew of other finishes to consider as well. Brushed nickel and bronze continue to be popular, but some of the newer finishes offer more than just looks. Stainless steel and matte black mask both water spots and fingerprints. You can also look for different textures, such as smooth, shiny, or oil-rubbed for a more unique touch in your new kitchen.

Fresh Fittings

What if you want a more custom look for your home? A new kitchen hardware idea incorporates a pop of color in the faucet trim. Look for a white, red, or black inset against a metal finish for a bold statement. Very popular for 10+ years is the single handle design over separate hot and cold handles for more simplicity and easier use. A kitchen designer with creativity can show you all the latest styles at various price points to make your kitchen more appealing to you and your guests.

How do you know if any of these features in kitchen faucets for new kitchens are right for you? Consumer reports and sites like Best Reviews takes the guesswork out of fixtures by testing products and sharing the results with consumers to keep you informed before you buy.

Kitchen Lighting Gets Risqué for Gen X’ers

Ktichen LightingDeep within all of us is the deep love for that traditional Rockwellian home setting that offers warmth and comfort due to its perpetual association with family. Yet there is a reason why such nostalgia is buried deep. While such a setting is often longed for during holidays and special occasions, it isn’t one that typically jives with the lifestyles and personalities of today’s Gen X’ers.

Take your kitchen, for example. It’s easy to fall into the trap of thinking only of the space’s function, and then designing around it accordingly. However, if you truly stop to analyze things for a second, you’ll come to the realization that the kitchen is the epicenter of your home. Almost all activity originates from there. Thus, given the amount of time that you as well as your family and friends will spend in there, should you not then plan on putting a little bit of yourself into the space with your lighting?

Successfully Combining Style and Function

Is this possible without sacrificing function? Believe it or not, style and function are not mutually exclusive. In fact, when it comes to kitchen lighting, one can enhance the other. If you’re like most plugged-in people, then you’ve likely designed your kitchen in a contemporary style. You owe it to the space not to stop that style pattern once you start installing your lights.

How can you apply the level of sophistication assigned to your generation in your kitchen lighting while still seeing to the space’s optimal function? Consider the following tips:

  • Mixed recessed lights with stylish fixtures: Many feel as though recessed lights and hanging fixtures don’t mix, yet the truth is quite the opposite. Stylish hanging fixtures are typically used for task lighting, while recessed lights provide ambient lighting. Yet it’s important to know where to place canned lights. Putting them under cabinets or in over sinks ensures that they won’t take away from your hanging fixtures.
  • Get creative with your pendants: Hanging pendant lighting over kitchen islands and prep areas offers you a wealth of possibilities when it comes to design. Keep in mind that these fixtures will figure prominently in your design, so don’t be afraid to get a little crazy and creative, like choosing colors contrasting your cabinetry or hanging lights unevenly.
  • Incorporate sculpture: If you’re looking to go really bold and risqué with your lighting, any kitchen designer with creativity will tell you to consider a sleek, monorail style fixture that snakes its way over your surfaces from which you can hang fixtures at differing intervals.

Who says that your kitchen lighting ideas have to be boring and bland? Your home is the canvas on which you imprint your personality. Why, then, would that same principle not also apply to your lighting? Find yourself a lighting designer with creativity and fresh new design concepts. Add under counter kitchen lighting to illuminate the floor and lower storage spaces. Go ahead and make a bold, risqué statement to your kitchen with your own personal style.

Bath & Shower Trends for 2016

Bath & ShowerBathroom designs change every year, with older designs falling by the wayside and newer trends taking prominence. In 2016, popular designs include metals, tiles and heated floors. There is also an increased focus on technology, and perhaps to balance out the tech-centric effect, many homeowners are incorporating Zen elements into their bathrooms.

Going Zen

For some people, the bathroom is an oasis of calm. To this end, you may enjoy Zen-themed design elements such as standalone tubs, sliding glass doors, fresh tropical plants and stone sinks that lack true corners.

“Smart” Bathrooms

Perhaps you grew up with technology and love the idea of incorporating it into your bathroom whenever possible. On the other hand, if you do not have a lot of technology experience, learning the ins and outs of bathroom technology is a breeze. Do you hate cleaning your toilet bowl? Take advantage of new flush tech that adds powerful and clean oomphs to your flushes. Do you love music? You can connect your smartphone to a bathroom audio system for even more relaxation or for a jazzy start to your day.

Heated floors are another aspect of technology that more and more homeowners want in their bathrooms. If you live in cold regions of the country, you will the spring put back into your step after you get heated floors.

Metallic Appearances

If you are looking for bathroom renovation ideas that help refresh your bathroom’s look for a minimal expense, then metal may be the way to go. For example, just replacing your faucets and shower hardware with trendy metal accents made of nickel or bronze can give your bathroom a great new look. And how about that mirror? A metallic frame could give your bathroom a contemporary look and serve as a focal point. Other ideas include the use of oil brushed metals for chandeliers and light fixtures.

Hello There, Tile

Bathroom tile is, in a way, retro, but trends in 2016 are leading to tile that is anything but retro. Whether you prefer classic, upbeat, creative, quirky or even black & white, you can find tile that is more than up to the job. Be sure to choose dependable tile such as subway tile where water will not hurt or damage the wall you are using as a foundation. If you want tile that is capable of letting other elements of the bathroom take center stage, experiment with slate gray or winter white.

As with any room, you can bring your bathroom designs to a new level by using a focal point. A tub, a mirror or a vanity are examples of focal points as you contemplate your bathroom renovation ideas. Visit a few bathroom remodeling showrooms in NJ for ideas and stop by a home goods store for a piece of art that stands out. A stylish sculpture or painting you fall in love with may fit the bill as a focal point.

Bathroom Remodeling Ideas for Shore Homes

Beach House BathroomThe ideal beach home should be bright, inviting and peaceful. Whether your beach home is your primary residence or vacation destination, it should feel like you are stepping into an oasis when you walk through the doors. This is especially true for the bathroom, which is a primary room where most people spend at least a portion of their day. If your bathroom currently feels more like a dungeon than an oasis, here are a few bathroom renovation ideas that will transform it into one of the most relaxing areas of your beach home.

  1. Freshen up Your Color

Dark, moody colors were never really in style for beach homes and can make your bathroom look sullen and dreary. Never underestimate the power of color when it comes to shaping a certain mood. If you want your bathroom to take on an ethereal, heavenly look and feel, try painting it in pearly white tones or various shades of off-white. You can also capture the soothing calm of the ocean by painting your walls in light ocean-blue or seafoam green colors.

  1. Set the Mood With Lights

Take a moment to examine the light fixtures in your bathroom. If they fail to elicit pleasant feelings in you, switch them out for light fixtures that set the mood you want. Romantic brass and cream wall sconces that shed warm light are perfect if you want your bathroom to feel dreamy and spa-like, while shiny silver fixtures and crisp white bulb covers are perfect if you want to infuse energy and a feeling of cleanliness into your bathroom.

  1. Focus on the Tub

If you’re not currently in love with your tub or if it just seems wrong in your bathroom, get rid of it. Your tub should be the focal point of your bathroom and needs to have character and appeal. More importantly, it needs to be the ideal place to retreat to and relax your cares away. If you’re looking for old-fashioned charm and classic allure, look for a freestanding claw foot tub with bold brass fixtures. Even simple-looking freestanding tubs can be dressed up when placed on a deep step decorated with customized tile floor work.

  1. Incorporate Warm Woodwork

If you want to add a rustic touch to your bathroom, incorporating woodwork in brighter tones throughout the room is the perfect way to achieve your goal. From flooring to vanities to windows, there are plenty of places you can add splashes of rugged wood to your coastal bathroom retreat.

Track down a bathroom remodeling showroom in NJ or near you to help get a feel for the latest trends. Most good bathroom designs have a foundation in using your common sense and quality products. These simple coastal bathroom renovation ideas are affordable and easy. Best of all, they are effective ways to turn your boring bathroom into the dreamy paradise you always knew it could be.