Kitchen Remodel with Bella Casa

Kitchen Remodel with Bella Casa

A Q&A with Faye Motsenigos

The economy is strong, and its time to start investing in your home again. So, where’s the best place to start? We suggest where all the action happens and considerable value can be created – the kitchen.

In this Q&A, we share the expertise of Fay Motsenigos from Bella Casa to serve as a guide for kitchen remodels.

I want to redo my kitchen cabinets, but recently installed light Brazilian cherry hardwood floors. How should I think about the right color palette? Should I try to match the floor color or look for something in a contrasting shade?

Solid, engineered, or re-finished flooring, we’ve seen a rise in wood floors in kitchens.  Painted cabinets are always a great choice with wood flooring. White or off-white, in particular, contrast beautifully with the rich look of Brazilian cherry.

In general, a little bit of education and the consumer’s simple understanding of design and design elements are beneficial to get the most out any space. A balance between style, tone, proportion and scale all important. When experiencing the scale of design, we tend to compare its size to the size of our own bodies.

How do I make sure my kitchen remodel is fresh and modern, but also won’t look outdated in a few years?

Transitional is a great way to go for a timeless look. By combining contemporary elements and the warmth of traditional design, you can’t go wrong. For example, with transitional design, you can use traditional white shaker style doors with marble countertops and ornate light fixtures to achieve unique style and good balance. Regardless of any design perspective, staying true to your own desires for style, form and function are the most important factors.

How can/should a homeowner best work with a kitchen remodeler?

If you’re looking for low stress, finding a company who allows you to enjoy the renovation process is critical. If you have the ability to do your project turn-key, it will save you time and money long term. Hiring a design/build firm to manage the entire project from start to finish alleviates the hassle of you having to become the general contractor. From demo, design, and material selection to paint and trim work, better firms create value by providing a project manager and/or design expert to guide you through the entire process.

4 What are some of the latest trends in kitchen redesign?

Oak is making a comeback. Some of the most popular options include quarter-sawn white oak in rich stains, painted oak – which adds texture and warmth to a design, and rustic oak for accent applications like floating shelves.

The most important factor is to stay true to your style, wants, and needs.

Multiple finish colors are hot right now. An easy way to create this look can be achieved by making the island a different finish from the perimeter of the kitchen. Another way is to finish upper cabinets with paint or stain and lower cabinets with the opposite. The same idea can apply to countertops. A bold, unique piece of granite on the island with subtle, solid quartz on the perimeter always looks great.

Color customization is also hot right now. Most homeowners want more than a cookie cutter design. If you’re looking for unique or want to make a statement, the use of a bold color is an effective way to achieve. Cabinet manufacturers are always providing the latest and greatest in colors. From neutrals (greys, blues, and soft greens) to bold (black, navy, and emerald green), there are many options to choose from. Many manufacturers also provide custom colors to achieve a unique look.

In this day and age, clients are inseparable from technology. So, it’s becoming more common to incorporate electronics and automation into our kitchen designs. Charging stations are the most common. If you love to entertain or listen to your 80’s throwback music while you cook, hardwired or wireless speakers are another favorite to keep family and guests entertained.

What are some lower cost/lower budget ways to give my kitchen a facelift instead of a complete remodel?

There are many ways to update your kitchen without taking on a full remodel.  If your cabinets are in great condition, you may consider a new quartz or granite countertop, a new backsplash, new cabinet hardware, and/or light fixtures. 

To take it a step further, upgrade an old floor with tile or wood.  Adding or replacing an existing island in a contrasting color to the perimeter of the kitchen also works well to provide a simple, less expensive, but nice update.

How much do I need to budget for my kitchen remodel?

There are multiple factors to consider when budgeting your kitchen remodel. Knowing how much you can afford is number one. Another factor is knowing how long you plan to stay in your home. If you’re not planning on living in your home for more than five years, consider the investment relative to the potential increase in the home’s value.  If you plan on staying longer, you consider a all of the factors that best fits you and your family’s needs. 

On average, homeowners report that a kitchen remodel costs around $20,000. Smaller projects that include painting walls, re-facing cabinets, upgrading the sink, and installing a tile backsplash can run between $5,000-$15,000, whereas larger turn-key projects that require demolition can run $50,000 and up. Either way, most design professionals will help you sort through your project, provide guidance, and help keep your budget on track.

I’m in the process of buying a new home, and I’m open to a house that requires kitchen renovations? What should I be looking for in terms of “good bones” that we can build off of?

Simple. When looking for a new home, ask yourself these questions (and write down the answers!). Is there room to expand to achieve your desired kitchen layout? Are there adjacent rooms to the kitchen laid out in a manner that will work with your lifestyle? If not, can they be modified to do so? Does your ideal kitchen style fit with the style of the house?  For example, your dream of an ultra-modern kitchen might not be the proper fit for an older stately home.

I’m torn between glass and wood cabinets. I love the aesthetic of glass, but have heard it’s hard to keep clean and cabinet contents can very easily look cluttered. What is your recommendation?

 There are multiple options for glass cabinets, starting with different types of material and their characteristics. If you’re looking to hide what’s behind doors, but love the look of glass, opt for decorative, textured or patterned glass that can obscure the contents in your cabinets. Installing a single glass cabinet or few glass cabinets in a small section of your kitchen is another option.  Stacked or transom cabinets, where just the upper portion of your cabinet is glass, is also a good solution and popular choice.

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