Merideth Sheahan March 13, 2020 Kitchen Design
Before you choose a kitchen designer, make as many general design decisions as possible. Setting clear goals, even if you can’t envision them in final form, will improve communication with your designer, and designers’ responses to your goals may determine your final choice of the professional whom you hire. General goals can include more light, an eating area, deeper counter space, a separate sink for produce and flower arranging, a baking area and home office space. Making a list before you choose a designer helps you clarify how you want your kitchen to function once the work is completed and helps a designer create a responsive overall plan. Decisions like blue vs. brown tiles will come later, but a complete list is key to creating a master design plan.
omeowners looking to remodel overwhelmingly gravitate toward this spacious and flexible kitchen layout, which is just what it sounds like—your kitchen and countertops arranged an open ”L” shape.
”We start with the as-built plan to take a look at how everything’s working and what’s not functioning very well,” says Black. The new design will address the shortcomings and patterns of use that she finds.
For complicated jobs such as kitchen renovations, many designers seek special training and professional credentials. A major source of certification is the trade-based National Kitchen and Bath Association. An NKBA-certified designer has studied construction, mechanical, electrical and plumbing technologies and safety and professional conduct standards. Another avenue of certification is the National Council for Interior Design Qualification, which tests for competency in building systems, building codes, construction standards, contract administration, design application, professional practices and project coordination. NCIDQ states that its testing is based strictly on public health, safety and welfare. Certification indicates a broad knowledge base that ranges from knowing where to put plumbing pipes to choosing the right size stove for your space. Checking a designer’s professional credentials is one way to further your choice of someone to oversee your renovation.
Usage: Be honest about how you currently use your kitchen—and how you want to use your new space. Is it the heart of your home where your family often hangs out, or your solitary retreat? Are you all about dishes that take hours to prepare? Or are you more of a microwave chef?
Deeper vertical cabinets, sometimes fitted with slots, can accommodate more awkward shapes. Take an inventory of your kitchen equipment so you’ll know exactly what you need. Black taps Blum for their cabinet organization systems.
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