What’s Taking So Long??

“Why is my remodel taking so long?” This is something I hear a lot lately, and as a person who prides herself on exceptional customer service, it makes me cringe! But it’s a question that needs answering: why is it taking so long just to get these projects designed, bid, approved by the homeowners and into the production queue? I’ve got a few ideas. Getting into the queue: Since the burst of the housing bubble, if you’re still in business, you’ve trimmed your staff significantly. For a small to mid-size architectural/design firm, that means that you’ve cut back to one or two designers who perform most all the office functions; the designers are now acting as not only designers but they answer phones, work the front desk, serve as production assistants, estimators, etc. The owner might be taking care of the sales and administration on top of being the design Continue reading

“Kitchen-Centric”: The New Standard for Home Design

The role of the kitchen in the house and in the family has changed. Where kitchens of the past were rooms of utility, hidden away in the recesses of a home, now designers and families are recognizing the beauty and function of this space as the core of a home. Almost any host can attest that, try as they might to prevent it and encourage guests into other rooms, the kitchen draws us in. We gather around islands and the kitchen becomes the emotional center of the home. Kitchen-centric design reflects this feeling and creates a space that is as comfortable and well lived in as any living room. In the late 20th Century, the idea of the open kitchen came about, and the walls between family rooms and kitchens were torn down. Now, this idea has evolved, and kitchens are becoming integrated rooms that are completely livable as architecture Continue reading

The Designer Kitchen: Custom, Quality, Personal.

The kitchen is often the heartbeat of the home; it is where memories are made, where friends gather and where family members connect. Something this personal should not be one-size-fits-all. A designer kitchen takes a family’s needs into consideration instead of using a standard mold. “Designer” equates to a kitchen where the finishes are thoughtful and unique to the client, where the space performs at the highest level and still looks beautiful, and a comfortable and functional workspace is created. While builders or general contractors may have seen hundreds of kitchens, they don’t have the same design sensibilities as a designer, says Debra Toney. Designers like Michelle Ku ask specific questions geared toward getting to know a client well before the design and finishes are considered. Everything from how often you play bridge to how often you clean is relevant in designing a kitchen that’s catered to your needs. A Continue reading