Last Post: October 30, 2014

Kitchen Countertop Guide for First-Time Buyers
October 30, 2014

For first time buyers, choosing a countertop is no easy feat. There are a lot of options out there – from granite to quartz and solid surface counters. Many homeowners don’t know where to begin, but that’s what we’re here for. We will guide you in making an informed purchase and customizing your countertop to a whole new level.

  • The beauty and durability of natural stone make it a popular choice for countertops. It brings true elegance to your kitchen. Whether it’s granite or marble, it can transform the look of your kitchen. Consider investing in a material that’s not only captivating but also functional.

  • As you look at home design magazines and online catalogs, keep in mind that the colors you see may look different in person. Make sure to visit a showroom so you can choose countertops with confidence. Select a color that will enhance the aesthetic appeal and compliment the overall look of your kitchen.

  • It’s the small details that make a kitchen unique. The edge profile of the countertop can have a huge impact on functionality. Square, beveled, mitered, bullnose and ogee are some of the most sought after choices.  

  • Before you buy a new sink and faucet, figure out the perfect size for your cooking and cleaning needs. A large sink will give you more space for food prep and cleanup while smaller sink will cost less than bigger ones.  

  • Each countertop material comes with specific maintenance requirements. Ask your contractor about proper cleaning and stain removal. If you need something low maintenance, choose a non-porous and stain resistant material such as quartz and solid surface. On the other hand, granite and marble may require resealing every year or two to ensure bacteria resistance and should be cleaned with a particular stone-cleaning agent.

Consider your countertop decision as a big investment. Take the time to shop around, know your options, confirm your budget and stick to it, and then make the leap.

2014 Kitchen Trend: Open Shelving, Glass-Front Cabinets
January 21, 2014

Kitchen cabinets used to be a place to tuck away dishes and hide boxes behind solid doors. But this year, the latest kitchen trend is open shelving, according to the Zillow Digs Home Design Trend Report for 2014. If you don’t want to be left out, here are some tips from Kerrie Kelly, the principal designer and owner of Kerrie Kelly Design Lab in Sacramento.

Match your kitchen style

The glass-front cabinets aren’t just for modern spaces; they work well in any kitchen style. According to Kelly, you should focus on using only one or two materials and be creative in your installation with whatever materials you choose. Painted cabinets with glass fronts and statement knobs would look great in traditional or country-style kitchen, while sleek, flat-front cabinets will make a contemporary space stand out.

Display kitchen items

Aside from picking cabinets to match your kitchen, choose accessories and kitchenware that will go with the overall look. Since glass-front cabinets will showcase your items, Kelly suggests you curate statement pieces and let your collection grow with you and your space. Try spices, olive oil, cookbooks, and glass jars filled with oatmeal or dried fruits.

Try experimenting with DIY shelving

Updating your cabinets to match these trends could be an easy do-it-yourself project that can be done over the weekend and provides great versatility. Kelly recommends removing doors on one of your cabinets, and painting or adding wallpaper inside the open-shelf walls to create a unique touch.

Add the look elsewhere

Open shelving is not exclusive for the kitchen; you can have this throughout the entire home especially in the bathroom vanities. Kelly reminds homeowners to get creative with shelving units and try incorporating vintage pieces with sleek colors for a chic storage solution in any living space.


Would you try this out in your own kitchen? We’d love to know!

Image credit:  DetailsADesignFirm

New Year’s Resolutions for Your Home
January 7, 2014

Here are some resolutions to welcome a brand new year:

  • Cut down energy use. Start by sealing and insulating your HVAC ductwork and make sure you maintain the system and change furnace filters regularly.

  • Conserve water. Reducing water consumption can also add to your energy savings. Get a low-flow showerhead and toilet so you won’t have to flush away a huge amount of money on water costs.

  • This is also the perfect time to get organized and stash some of your old stuff. Clean your shelves and utilize under-space storage.

  • If you have a spare time, use your DIY skills to do routine maintenance and repairs such as caulking windows and doors, cleaning gutters, or mowing the lawn. Learn something new and invest in a hobby, like gardening and get your kids involved as well. You can teach them how to plant. This will allow you to spend more time with them while doing home improvement projects.

  • If your resolutions include having a beautiful kitchen this year, consider remodeling to improve the value of your home. Come up with a plan and think of the areas to be remodeled. Take a look around your kitchen: Do you need to update your appliances, replace your countertop or worn-out cabinets and flooring? Once you have listed the things to add in your remodeling project, check your budget and hire a professional to do the job.

We hope you have a beautiful, efficient, and clean home this year. What are your home improvement resolutions and how will you achieve them? Share it with us!