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The Rest of the “Hot Pepper” Kitchen Story

Happy new year peeps! Back at the drawing board this week after a nice holiday break. I got a lot of annoying little things done AND spend a little time in the studio but that’s another story. Last post I told you about my dream kitchen. I don’t know about you but I’m still dreaming and that was just enough to pique my interest. The lovely Shannon Pepper of Shannon Pepper Design in New Zealand, YES, New Zealand (who knew they were rocking such awesome design down under?)  Read more


Tip #3: Where can I save money and what items are worth the splurge?

Many of our clients begin kitchen remodeling projects in the summer.  Kids are out of school and our commitments tend to be less (for some of us) in the summer months.  Today’s client query is one that I hear a lot.  Naturally we all want to get the most for our money in all our investments but where can you save money in a kitchen remodel and what items are worth the splurge?

The answer to that is largely subjective as we all have differing needs and priorities.  That said, there are some principles that should never be compromised and those include efficient use of space, safety and the best quality you can afford.

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A Kitchen With A Happy Ending!

This was my client's vision.
This was my client’s vision.

Today we wrapped up some final details in this new kitchen.  The client was going for a Mediterranean vibe, elegant but at the same time warm and inviting.  She loves to entertain so the kitchen had to be a focal point for her guests and it had to tell the story of her vision.  All these bells and whistles can really run up the price of your cabinets but we were able strike a good deal with Kith Cabinets. Read more



She lives the green life.

It’s official.  The “color gods” have spoken.   Who are these “color gods”?  They would be an organization known as Pantone.  Pantone, Inc. is the authority on color, provider of color systems and leading technology for accurate communication of color. The market leader in color has officially named Emerald THE color for the year 2013.  When I think of emerald a number of things come to mind including:  my birthstone, mermaids, deep sea, summer AND  then I think about all the other greens and how we use them in our interior environments.  One thing I love about green is that it brings outside in.  As Pantone notes here it represents regeneration, healing and unity.

Here’s the EXACT color.

Just for fun I thought I’d share with you some of my fave ideabook finds containing the color green.


This is another kind of green that I love.  It almost makes me want to wash clothes.


These green marble tops definitely bring the lovely outside in. Hints of brown tie in the warm wood cabinets.


White cabinets are the rage and what better way to highlight them but with a clever shade of green on the walls?


Here’s the same color palette, warm wood and green marble.  As you can see, it works equally well whether the theme is contemporary or traditional.


This is a totally different green, almost grey suggesting elegance and refinement.  So whether your taste runs to emerald or chartreuse, green is a great option.  In fact there are two other greens on the hit parade for 2013, Tender Shoots and Grayed Jade.  You can see the complete Pantone Color Report for Spring 2013 here.




Panels around peninsula reflect architecture of the house. Cool bar stools by Kyle Wells Design.

Ta daaaaa!  Another beautiful kitchen is complete, and yes it’s white with Shaker doors.  Surprise!  Not.  There were two main challenges about working in this home.  First of all the architecture is very unique and is an integral part of the space.  It’s comprised of posts and beams, angles and open lofts which remind me of a ship.  The second challenge was a lack of unity with way too much going on visually.  The existing kitchen had three different types of counter tops, two different types of cabinets and more stuff than space.  In addition, hinges and drawer slides were failing and paint was chipping.

The homeowners came equipped with the most valuable of traits, an open mind.  They were willing to see their kitchen and laundry area in a new way.  Every step of the design process we would ask ourselves “does this unify and simplify”?  Think “nautical zen”!

First off I decided to make peace with the posts and beams.  The layout remained the same and we didn’t even change the door style or color!  What we did was improve the fit and function.  Using all white counters unified the space and allowed the blue granite back splash to be the star of the show.  Here are some “before” pix and “after” solutions which will pave the way for smooth sailing in this new kitchen.

This was the peninsula before. See the new and improved above!


This existing refrigerator just didn't fit. It overlapped the casing of the door on the right. This built-in model was not built-in!


Before we also had a traffic jam on the left of the fridge with beams, posts and different ceiling heights!


The homeowners had to face facts and downsize the fridge. What they gave up in space they made up in style. Oh, and they kept the other one in the garage. Now it's built-in and it fits! We dealt with the beam by allowing the refrigerator cabinetry to stand alone.

Traffic jam on the left is also solved. By clearing the beam we were able to go higher with the upper cabinet plus we added an appliance garage below to keep things neat and tidy.

This is Mindi showing off her new kitchen.


Before, radius drawers were failing from weight and inadequate slides and guess what? The cook top didn't fit either.


We unified the space by using matching cabinets and creating a proper fit for the new Wolf gas cook top. Acid etched glass subtly conceals contents of cabinets.


This is Max. He's into hockey, he likes to dream big and he loves to cook so he's really happy about the new kitchen.


We added some hidden conveniences. This is the spice cabinet extraordinare!


This is the pantry/laundry room before


...and here it is after.


Last but not least, this cute little family member was very accommodating through the entire process.

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