Archive for category Interior Design
We’ve been talking a lot recently about the elements that come together to create your dream home. When you buy real estate, the advice is to put your money into kitchens and master suites. There are a couple of good reasons for this. First, these are areas in which you will get the best return for your investment in case of resale. But when you are talking about buying or building your dream home, the kitchen and master suites are parts of the home where you will probably spend most of your time so it’s a good idea to invest your time, planning, and resources into making them exactly what you want. Email us your ideas and we’ll include them in a future post, or post to Facebook at RealViningsBuckhead.
A kitchen is all about the details. Hiring a kitchen designer can help ensure that you don’t miss any must-haves. Having a professional plan your lighting and outlet placement can make all the difference in having the right task lighting and spaces for the way you cook. They can also help you plan which fixtures and surfaces need to be chosen first so that plumbing and electrical installation are sure to fit with your choices. (Remember how I mentioned certain faucets needing the plumbing to be built to specific heights in my dream home post? It’s especially important to plan for this in the kitchen!)
- If you love great coffee, consider getting a built-in and plumbed coffee station installed like this beautiful Miele coffee system.
- Building in a spacious appliance garage to store coffee maker, electric kettle, toaster, and mixer is a great way to keep your counter tops uncluttered and all of your breakfast appliances convenient in one place. There are shelving systems that can be installed under the counter too that will “pop” your heavier appliances up to counter level with a sturdy spring-loaded system.
- Pop-up outlets, especially on an island, can keep your counters seamless but still make plugging in appliances convenient.
- If you like to entertain or host big holiday meals, two dishwashers make clean-up quick and easy
- A warming drawer is another great idea for big holiday meals
- Start researching your counter surfaces early- there are a lot of options out there. From show-stopping marble to durable and modern quartz and eco-friendly cement, ask about the pros and cons so that you end up with counters that are both functional and beautiful for your lifestyle.
- A built-in banquette in the breakfast nook can provide a cozy seating area and hide a ton of storage for items you use less often.
- Having two sinks in the kitchen gives you a smaller sink for washing delicate china and crystal and a big one for pots and pans to soak in. A small sink can also be filled with ice for parties.
- A lot of people are installing nothing but drawers under the counter. They make finding things so much easier! And the hardware makes drawers sturdy enough for even the heaviest enameled cast iron cookware.
- Speaking of drawers, soft-close drawers and cabinets are the only way to go. Hardware has come such a long way, it really makes keeping all of your things accessible while stored away effortless.
- Ceiling height cabinets make use of all of your space for storage and keep you from having to deal with all of the dust that gathers on top of kitchen cabinets. If you have beautiful serving pieces that you like to display, glass fronted cabinets with built-in puck lights can make them a great feature.
- Mini-fridges under the counter are convenient, whether you use the energy-efficient drawer refrigerators for extra food storage or you install glass fronted wine coolers. Combined with the coffee station, you have all your drinks in one area of the kitchen!
- Make use of even oddly shaped areas for storage- like a tall thin cupboard for brooms and sweepers or a little cubby for paper towels. There are options to get the most storage out of every inch of your kitchen.
- Kick-plate vacuum systems mean you can just sweep dust and dirt over to the opening and it disappears forever!
I’ve always looked at pictures of bunk rooms on Houzz and dreamed about building them into the beach house I’d have one day. They would, of course, have a nautical theme.
Well, my neighbors beat me to it – the bunk room, not the beach house. They took a dark room in their basement and had the builder finish it out super cute for their two girls. Each bed has a cubby-hole for a night light and whatever else the child wants to stash in there.
Obviously, my son now wants one in a boy theme. He’s at the perfect age so if I’m going to do it, now is probably the time. I imagine this will be THE place for sleepovers for many years to come! If you need the builders name or pricing, just email me and I’ll share it with you.
Everything old becomes new again! I’m old enough to remember the early 80’s when gray was the neutral. It looks like it is making a strong comeback. Clients are calling it Greige and in this article they are calling it Dune. It’s basically a warm-toned grey.
Regardless of what you call it, I like it and already have a room this color. I find it goes well with stone or brick (the mortar in brick can be the same tones.) In surveying my house, I find that it is all solids – not patterns – which makes changing a color pretty easy. Someone once told me when selecting colors for your home to look at your wardrobe as it contains color you tend to like. I can’t say the color scheme applies to me – I have a pretty bright summer wardrobe and fairly dark winter one – but the lack of patterns certainly holds true.
Beyond White: Hot Color Trends for the Kitchen and Bath RISMEDIA, Thursday, October 17, 2013— (BPT) – So many of us love the rich colors featured in kitchen and bath magazines, but when it comes to selecting colors for our own homes, we tend to play it safe. It’s time to be bold and get out of the color comfort zone. Whether it’s a vibrant backsplash, playful shade on the wall, or a new sink color that pops with personality, today’s hot color trends are anything but boring.Consider these top five color trends for kitchen and bath spaces:
1. Gray reigns king
The 2013 NKBA Trends Report names gray the coveted color of the year. According to the report, use of gray color schemes in both kitchens and baths has dramatically increased since 2010, particularly over the past year. The hue is currently used in 55 percent of kitchens and 56 percent of bathrooms.
“I regularly work gray into my projects because it instantly elevates the design and adds depth to the palette,” says senior interior designer Travis Rotelli, who works at the Kohler Design Center in Kohler, Wis.
Another old style that is making a comeback is brass. So often, I hear clients say that they don’t like all the brass in a particular house. The solution for that now is to simply take the good quality Baldwin brass and have it dipped to remove the clear coat. This will reveal the natural brass. This natural aged brass is beautiful and the new style again. I have Baldwin Brass in my home and may try it in a few rooms to see how it goes before I do the whole thing. If I do, I’ll be sure to take before and after pictures. I like the warmth of brass, and while hardware styles and choices change so frequently, high quality fixtures should be able to pass the test of time.
What do you think of both of these comeback styles? Have you or would you use either of these in your own home?
I’ve recently had a few listings that a few Atlanta real estate agents called “contemporary”, and although the homes themselves would not be called contemporary it seems that anything different than what Atlantans are used to seeing being built by builders around 2005 gets labeled contemporary. I’ve had agents tell me contemporary doesn’t sell in Atlanta.
I want to be the first to disagree and talk about the contemporary trend in metro Atlanta real estate.
When I first started in real estate in 2002, I may have agreed. I saw builders all building the same things – brick and stone with a lot of mixed media in between. The floors plans all had a similar feel.
In 2013, not only do we have a different audience in Atlanta, but also we have a very global influence on our home designs and clients’ desires. Those from NY, California and yes, many places in between have been seeing modern architecture and finishings a lot longer than here in the heart of the South where oriental rugs and draperies seem to be the preference.
I was inspired to write this post this morning after reading an article in my daily Prudential e-news. The article which I’ll post below is about Legos and the simplicity their new design holds.
I find myself starting to move everything in my house to “white” or variations of it. I like the simplicity, the ability to add accents in different seasons and have a new look all the time. Sometimes when life is crazy, the best retreat is to a room that is clean and simple. It’s relaxing to me. I guess that’s the Zen feel that many look for.
Anyway, I hope we continue to see more structures in Atlanta that are “simple” with clean lines, and our children can take the monochromatic Legos and really “create” versus copying the picture off the front of a box. I like the lesson learned here, and I think I’ll find this set for my son for his birthday.
Lego, the Tool of Young Modernists
|By Christopher Hawthorne|
|RISMEDIA, Thursday, August 29, 2013— (MCT)—Over the last couple of weeks, a tiny monochromatic skyline has been growing in my kitchen.Since opening Lego’s new Architecture Studio, my daughters (who are 9 and 4) and I have been putting together, dismantling and redesigning a group of about 10 buildings. We’ve kept the results on display on a shelf above the sink.Because the Architecture Studio includes bricks in just two shades — white and transparent — the buildings we’ve created all seem to be related, at least distantly, to modern architecture. This is a decidedly Corbusian color scheme; as my 9-year-old put it, gesturing in the direction of a house she’d made, “If that was hot pink, it wouldn’t look modern.”Even her barn-like structure with a pitched roof looked as much Cliff May as old-fashioned stable, thanks in part to a transparent ground floor. The limited palette also seems to make the kit more forgiving — nearly any design looks pretty good in all white or the Lego equivalent of all glass (or a mix).Lego has produced a number of architecture-related products, but they’ve tended to be kits to design a single famous building: Frank Lloyd Wright’s Fallingwater, for example, or the Sydney Opera House. The Architecture Studio is closer in spirit to the original Legos, the ones that allow you to build whatever you feel like building.And as Edwin Heathcoate, the British architecture critic, pointed out recently, there’s something to be said for simplicity and open-endedness in toys. Part of that is nostalgia, I think, for a pre-digital age; but you can’t argue with the number of accomplished architects who talk about playing with Legos or wooden blocks as a formative experience. In that sense it’s surprising Lego didn’t release a set like this years ago.
The Architecture Studio comes with a pretty thick book featuring interviews with (and design advice from) architecture firms, including Tokyo’s Sou Fujimoto and the Swedish office Tham & Videgård. But it’s as much a collection of conceptual essays on the nature of architectural play as instruction manual — and to be fair, this is a product pitched at a target audience older than my kids, really teenagers and up.
I decided I liked the limited color scheme: It made the ungainly buildings I put together seem to come from the same architectural family as the ones the girls made, even if the shapes and sizes were quite different. I suspect more than a few kids, though, will open the box and immediately wish for brighter colors.
As I thought back on the time we’ve played with the set, I realized something surprising: The only time the three of us spent a sustained period of time using it together was right after we first took it out of the box.
The 1,200 pieces in the set come all mixed up in a bunch of small pouches. Before we built anything we decided to sort them by type as we all sat on the floor. That took a full hour. It was strangely meditative. A rare quiet descended on the house as we tossed the little bricks into growing piles.
Recently a friend called my walk in pantry my Costco closet. Then the other day I had a buyer mention that they needed shelving in the garage or a walk in pantry to use as their Costco Closet. How true!
This isn’t the first time a new “need” is uncovered as builders begin to catch up to it. Remember washer and dryers in closets? Now everyone wants huge laundry rooms with folding tables, hanging rods to drip dry, and cabinets for washing and drying products. The other thing that dawned on me was how uniquely American and probably middle to upper class this “need” is.
Years ago a friend from Bulgaria was at my home and laughed at the size of the shampoo containers I had in the guest room, along with a cabinet stocked with toilet paper. She explained that they only made enough money to buy what they need for the week and their homes were too small to store large quantities.
Then recently a friend from Singapore was staying with me and she was lamenting about missing the “Big Box” stores. She said when she moved to Singapore she had to take 2 years supply of paper towels as she was warned that they weren’t the same over there.
I know I can live differently and have when I was remodeling and basically liveing in a two bedroom apartment. I sometimes think things were easier with less then. As it seems something needs maintained everyday as a homeowner. But for now my pantry will be filled with huge boxes of Costco items for snacks etc.
Interestingly enough, you would think I’d face different requests with “empty nesters” as the term applies. You’d think they’d have less stuff – NEVER! They actually have decades of stuff they don’t want to get rid of. Thus they need to have a master bedroom on the main, and huge basements to store the stuff. They aren’t willing to get rid of their huge dining room furniture as they hope the family will come back at least once a year for the big dinner and they need the room for that one day! They don’t want a tiny dining room, because if they are going to use it, it needs to fit EVERYONE!
I think the 1960’s ranch plan is what is still desired by many. I realize the larger foundation is more costly, but empty nesters want everything on the main and are only willing to stick about 2 bedrooms ups.
A lot of current buyers think that floor plans that builders built in 2005 aren’t really working today, forget the Jack and Jill baths, every kid needs his/her own bath! I grew up sharing one bath with three brothers, but today heaven forbid a boy and girl share a bath.
Perhaps builders need to pick a specific demographic and design for that. There isn’t a one size fits all anymore. I always tell sellers that there is a buyer out there just like them and that’s the person that will buy their house – so true. Sometimes that pool of people is narrow and sometimes it’s wide. You’ll get a better price and sell quicker if the pool of people is wide, but you’ll always be able to sell at some price.
This home is currently SOLD.
Vinings French Provincial Home – 3480 Brandy Station Road – Atlanta, GA 30339
Shows like a new home! Linda McArthur designed and re-built in 2007.
Master on the main, all rooms are large and the three bedrooms up are ensuite with a playroom on that level as well. Pictures don’t do this Vinings estate justice. You must see to appreciate the quality and detail of the antique doors and large moldings. Such a great location for private school families. Sidewalks go straight from this home right on over to to Vinings Village and The Lovett School. Over 7,000 square feet with five bedrooms, five full baths and one half bath.
This home is currently under contract. Originally listed at $1,599,900 by Tina Hunsicker.
I had the opportunity to volunteer at this year’s Decorators’ Show House & Garden, located in an historical home in Buckhead, Knollwood. It was a real treat to be stationed in John Oetgen’s Solarium as guests passed through. This is a great way to support the arts, get ideas for your own home, be exposed to some of Atlanta’s most fabulous interior designers, and take a peak at incredible architecture. (Also not a bad idea for a last minute Mother’s Day gift!)
The Show House is open through Sunday, May 13, and tickets are $25 at the door. Click here to learn more about the Show House.