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Kitchen Remodeling: Choices, Choices, Choices!

December 17th, 2010


greyHouse Inc- Home Remodeling Blog, Raleigh, NC general contractor 

Kitchen Remodeling: Choices, Choices, Choices!

 

Smooth solid-stone countertops...

Sleek custom cabinets in rich hues.....

Shiny appliances with chef-pampering features for cooks of all levels.......

...It's no wonder kitchen remodeling garners recognition as the most exciting home renovation project in the industry!  With an unmatched variety of shapes, stlyes, colors and options, kitchens can be filled up and laid out to suit the specific tastes of any homeowner.  No other room in the house is offered the palette a kitchen is when it comes to remodeling, and the remodeling industry couldn't have chosen a better room to make their "baby" than the heartbeat of a home.  Just how many choices are there?  To find out, let's take a look inside the considerations of a homeowner starting a kitchen remodeling project...but beware, by the time we finish you might be ready to start a project of your own!

Kitchen Remodeling for Functionality

Before any of the pretty pieces can be chosen, the kitchen layout itself has to be finalized.  Have you always wanted an island with striking pendants and extra workspace?  Are you finally ready to add that built-in cooktop with commercial-grade hood?  Or is it time to open your floorplan, so you can actually see your family while you're preparing their dinners?  All these changes are identified pre-construction, and if you're looking for a complete transformation you'll want to speak to a home remodeling specialist before the project begins.

The Cabinetry

Kitchen Cabinets are more than just a place to stack your dishes and store your wine glasses before you uncork the next bottle.  Cabinets are responsible for setting the tone of your kitchen, and luckily for homeowners, they come in a myriad of sizes, colors, finishes and styles.  From dark cherry to distressed paint, flat panel to beadboard, hardwood to stainless steel...Like so many things in the kitchen the possibilities are endless, and with custom cabinets gaining in popularity, new styles and finishes are being developed and installed almost daily.

The Countertops

Countertops have come a long way since my mom first put her state-of-the art (Arctic White) Corian countertops in the kitchen of our family home.  Corian alone has evolved into a super-functional material that comes in almost every color and pattern, and although leaps-and-bounds ahead of where it was, still has trouble keeping pace with the glamour of granite and zeal of quartz.  Natural stone, like granite, is now mined all over the globe and can end up a splendid display in your kitchen after spending thousands of years in places like Peru, Brazil and Italy.  The newest rage on the market is engineered quartz, and with more manufacturers now offering this super-functional product, the price of this hot commodity has become reasonable.  It won't stain, it won't scratch, it won't chip and it won't break.  Kid tested, and mother, chef, and remodeler approved.

Appliances

With appliances now being offered in Platinum finish (yes, I said PLATINUM), their Jetsons-style gadgets and gizmos aren't all that 21st Century appliances have to offer.  Self-cleaning ovens that clean with steam instead of heat (you know how that leaves your kitchen smelling like burned tuna casserole for days), convection cook-tops that are cool to the touch just seconds after using, and refridgerators so advanced they might as well put your food on the fork and deliver it right to your mouth.  Platinum finish, by the way, is similar to stainless steel but doesn't leave fingerprints and will hold a magnet.  Can you say, "Upgrade?!"

Flooring

Travertine tile, exotic Ipe (petrified rainforest wood), bamboo and cork...though flooring is often the last piece of a home remodeling project that homeowners put into place, I think many are disappointed they have disregarded it when outlining their budgets and choosing where to invest money.  Like any of the above categories the products are endless, and the finishes, features, colors and patterns are just as varied as something like countertops (which seem to garner much more glory).  If you remodel your kitchen, why wouldn't you build it the way you build anything -- from the ground up??? 

Custom Features

Backsplashes - From walls of granite to textured stone tiles or flashy glass block that comes in a rainbow of colors, nothing adds depth to a kitchen like a new backsplash.  You can countri-fy, modernize, trend-set and oh-so-easily upgrade the look of your kitchen with a little focus on these areas, and a true kitchen remodel isn't complete until you've added your stylistic touch in the form of a backsplash. 

Lighting - These days, pretty pendants are all the rage, hanging like stoic beacons above island countertops and dinner tables ready to spotlight your dinnerplate.  They're a nice change from traditional can lighting, and like pretty much everything else in your kitchen, come in all sizes, shapes, patterns and colors.  Track lighting can also do wonders for kitchen remodeling, as their directable beacons are ideal for showing off custom cabinetry, appliances, and decor.

Sinks & Faucets - If you're going to replace your countertops (because that's the perfect time to change these pieces), please, please, PLEASE update these basic items - you'll be glad you did as the functionality of your kitchen will most certainly be improved by bigger basins and ergonomic sprayers.  And if you think variety isn't something you'll find when you go to make these changes, think again.   Single basins, 50-50, 60-40 or 70-30?  That's the easy part.  If you doubt  the advancements made by fixture companies when it comes to the kitchen faucet, I challenge you to peruse one of the many websites and check out styles, sizes and finishes (Moen has a good one).  PS- don't forget the Vegetable Sink!

Hardware - Of any part of kitchen remodeling, the widest selection has to be cabinet hardware.  Shapes, sizes, styles, colors, finishes, knobs, pulls, cups...they come in almost ANY shape you can think of, including teacups, animals, foliage...oye.  The biggest mistake homeowners make when it comes to this finish touch?  Running down to the Lowe's or Home Depot to pick these pieces out.  There is an endless array in this category and (as much as I love them), those stores don't come close to covering it.  Talk to a specialist, who can show you what the options really are.  Why would limit yourself in the category with the most choices???

 

Especially if you break it down, its obvious the kitchen remodel is #1 because of the variety of products and features homeowners have to choose from when upfitting their spaces.  It's safe to say there's almost everything out their but -- or in this case including -- the kitchen sink.

 

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