Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Sharing: How To Avoid Remodeling Mistakes

Beautiful on the surface - but what lies beneath?
Whether you're having a new home built or are going through an extensive remodel, it's a good idea to familiarize yourself with what is happening on a daily basis. While it's easy to think "I don't know anything about what they're doing, why would I ask questions," those questions may prevent mistakes, costly reworks, and even stop shoddy work before it gets covered up.

Potter Construction, a remodeling expert and Canyon Creek customer from Seattle, wrote a blog article exploring some of the ways professional remodelers avoid common mistakes. As you can see, having a great contractor and being involved in the process can make your project a success from the ground up.

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Design Tips For Your Home Office

This pleasant office has lots of light and plenty of counter space
Whether you're starting your own home-based business or have the opportunity to work from home a couple of days a week, you'll want a base of operations. From a desk in a corner to a dedicated room, there are a number of design tips that can help boost your productivity.
Include storage and display areas to blend function and beauty
If your office space is in your bedroom or the living room, create boundaries between work and living areas. A folding screen or ceiling-mounted curtains can close off the space, while an area rug in a different color can define the work zone. In a very tiny room, just turning on the desk lamp can be a visual cue that "work is in session."
An unused space at the top of the stairs can be the perfect solution
Speaking of a desk lamp, exposure to light can boost your mood and energy levels, so find ways to the let the light in! Whether it's natural light flooding through a window, plenty of bright overhead lights or a well-placed task light, don't skip this critical element.
Stained cherry cabinets create a cozy home office
If you're fortunate enough to have an entire room for your office, built-in cabinets can help to maximize the space. In this case, the base of the desk includes file drawers, and a bank of cabinets on the back wall holds books, supplies, mementos and more. The base of the bookcase offers even more "closed door" storage.
Bold colors make this office nook warm and welcoming
Don't forget the importance of color and decor in making your office an enjoyable space–nobody wants to sit in a dark, boring corner all day! Even if you're using second-hand furniture or accessories, you can dress them up with paint or fabric

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Hiding Your Kitchen Appliances

As our homes have evolved into open floorplans with no true boundaries between rooms, the look of the kitchen continues to become more "un-kitchen" like. Beautiful finishes; deeper, richer colors, and fewer wall cabinets are elements of this trend, as is the desire to hide or camouflage appliances.

While stainless steel remains incredibly popular, a wall of reflective metal isn't to everyone's liking. Simply putting "matched" panels on your refrigerator and dishwasher can blend those large appliances into your cabinets, as seen in the photos above.

In this spacious design, a row of appliance garages are used to hide all of the small appliances, canisters, cookbooks and other items that typically clutter a countertop. Deep drawers are becoming popular as another alternative to storing small appliances, pots, pans and even dishes.

We're seeing a lot of requests for bold paint colors on cabinets, such as the deep red above. Often used as an accent to a more traditional wood tone, the strong color sets the tone for the entire space. In this case, both colors are echoed in the adjoining family room to seamlessly blend the two areas.

Another way to dress up the kitchen is to create an island that looks like a piece of furniture. A raised  countertop on the "open" side helps to hide clutter, and acts as a visual barrier. The decorative legs and curvy stools echo the look of other pieces in the room, as does the beadboard used on the back of the island.

Friday, September 19, 2014

Sharing: The New Media Room

Is the in-home movie theater a thing of the past?
With the rapid changes in technology over the last few years, the way we use tech in our homes has changed dramatically. Kitchens are getting smarter and more responsive; we can turn on lights from our cell phones, and our TVs have become portals to a whole new world.
A multipurpose media/game room may take its place.
One of our customers, Potter Construction in Seattle, recently posted their thoughts on the New Media Room. No longer a stand-alone space for watching movies, the new room is more of a multipurpose space that embraces TV viewing, gaming and more. 

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Creative Backsplash Ideas

Like the name implies, the purpose of a backsplash is to catch splashes and splatters behind sinks and cooktops, making these areas easier to clean. While you could just use a semi-gloss paint on the wall, why not make it more personal and unique?

The “rules” for a backsplash treatment are...well, there are no rules! While square or rectangular tiles are the traditional choice, designers are turning to a wide range of products, and using those products in new and interesting ways.

Take it up the wall. For many years, the backsplash area was confined to the space between the countertop and the bottom of the wall cabinets, and behind the cooktop up to the vent. That has changed in recent years, with material often extending all the way up to the ceiling. This is an especially good choice for kitchens with lower ceilings, as it will help to draw the eye upward and give the impression of more height.

Echo the counters. Using the same color or material in more than one area brings a room together, and you can use this trick on your backsplash. Above, the countertop material from the island is used behind the cooktop. Dark, espresso-stained panels on either side match the island and help to create a focal point out of this area.

Go classic. White subway tiles have become a classic choice for their clean lines and flexibility. Tiles can be laid out in a traditional “running bond” arrangement (shown above), herringbone or chevron patterns, or neatly stacked. Subway tiles are available in a wide range of colors, sizes, textures and materials, so you can mix and match to customize the look.

Use a freeform look. Granite remains a popular choice for counters, but marble and onyx are often used as well. Many designers will use leftover pieces of these stone slabs as windowsills, narrow shelves or backsplashes. (Onyx is especially striking in this application, as it can be backlit for a warm glow.) As seen above, the top edge is left natural or broken off for a rough, organic look.

Look to the past. Materials like tin tiles and beadboard can bring an old-school vibe to a brand-new kitchen. We love how the design above brings the beadboard from the front of the island to the backsplash area, and even wraps around the window.

Get creative. Remember the rule that there are no rules? We’ve seen backsplashes that use pebbles, leather, wood strips, stainless steel panels, bottle caps, broken pottery, Legos and more. We used pennies (above) for the backsplash of a display featuring black walnut cabinets.

If you use a non-traditional material, you’ll want to make sure that it is well sealed and caulked where it meets the countertop. Be sure to have examples of kitchens you like when you meet with your designer - this will help you both make the right decisions for your home, style and budget.

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Selecting Cabinet Knobs & Pulls

Asymmetrical pulls reinforce this home's contemporary design
Once you've chosen the kitchen cabinets that best suit your home design and your lifestyle, you'll get to select knobs and other pieces of hardware that go along with them. Knobs and pulls may be small, but their style makes a big impact on your kitchen design. Here are a few things to think about when choosing cabinet hardware:

Select a finish. The finish of your cabinet hardware should complement the rest of your kitchen decor. For example, if you have brass faucets, you probably don't want to select stainless steel knobs or pulls because they'll clash. Opt for something that matches the theme of your kitchen, the way the oil rubbed bronze pulls above work with the distressed cabinets.

Bar pulls, knobs and "cup" pulls all work together because the finishes match
Variety is a good thing. Not all of the knobs and drawer pulls that you select for your cabinets need to be an exact match. The key is to choose styles that complement one another. This way, your hardware will blend harmoniously with the rest of your kitchen design.  

Make sure that the hardware styles all fit under the same category, like modern, vintage, rustic, contemporary, etc. Many manufacturers create families of complementary styles to help make the selection process easier.

Compare with cabinet doors. Before you set your heart on a particular type of hardware, see how the finish and style looks against your cabinet doors. For example, if you have dark wood cabinets, a cool, stainless steel knob would contrast perfectly. Above, the unexpected glitter of the pulls balances the colorful quartz counter.

Monday, June 30, 2014

Sharing: Personalized Bathrooms

When it comes to the master suite, homeowners increasingly want a space that is a retreat, not just someplace to get ready for the day. One of our customers, Chermak Construction, recently shared a number of trends they are seeing in bathroom design, from small renovations to large redesigns. Read the article

This beautiful Chermak design features Canyon Creek's Millennia frameless cabinets. The door style is Shaker, in maple with Ebony stain.