Selecting the Right Grout

Not many people consider grout as a factor when deciding on a new kitchen design. This is understandable, as grout does not play a major role in the appeal of the kitchen itself. However, grout is something to keep in mind because choosing the right grout can accent other features of the kitchen while choosing the wrong grout can stick out like a sore thumb.

If you have a white tile backsplash, for example, you may be considering a simple white grout to match. However, the white on white creates a boring look which does not please the eye, not to mention white grout gets dirty quickly and can be a pain to clean. Once it gets dirty, it can create a patchy gray coloration which will not charm the rest of the area. Popular grout colors to compliment white tile are typically a soft gray. Soft gray provides a slight contrast on the white tile which offers a classic, clean look.

Color Scheme

Another popular trend with white tiles is to pair them with darker grout colors to create a look that makes the tile a focal point of the kitchen. The thin dark layer of grout around the bright white tiles really makes them stand out in the room. The same pattern can be used for dark tiles as well. Lighter colored grout serves to contrast the tile perfectly and form an attractive arrangement.

Light gray or darker grout is the most common but in some instances colored grout is the way to go. Often when dealing with colored tiles, a colored grout can be used to compliment the tile color. Typically, a softer shade of the same tile color can be used for grout. This pattern creates a generic flow and avoids bold color patterns which may not match. Using white or light grout with colored tiles also can help to soften the space between the tiles and provide cleaner lines. If you’re choosing brightly colored tiles, we would pair that with a white grout.

The color of the tile is just one variable to consider when choosing the right grout. The finish of the tile is another consideration when specifying grout. The material of the tile can also affect the perception of the tile. White grout should be paired with glossy tile, creating a lighter appearance.

Of course, paying attention to surrounding color schemes and the overall pattern of the room itself will also affect the decision of what grout to use. Understanding the effect grout can have on a new kitchen or bath project is essential to putting the finishing touches on the perfect project. If you have a question about what grout may work best for your new kitchen or bath, contact Granite State Cabinetry today!

Warm Up a White Kitchen

White kitchen themes continue to be the most common kitchen color scheme, and for good reason. White kitchens are a timeless approach and are compatible with many different styles and designs. If you have a plain white theme though, think about spicing things up with new and emerging styles and color schemes that work with the white design. While you shouldn’t ditch the white kitchen look, add-on to it and create a kitchen design to be proud of!

White Kitchen Designs

One of the best complimentary designs with a white kitchen are glass-front cabinets. Depending on the desired look, glass-front cabinets can capture a modern look. The glass-front cabinet design works so well with the white theme adding a classic style. The glass-front adds functional benefits as well, allowing you to never have to search high and low for that plate that always seems to go missing.

Another style we love to see in white kitchens is a brick backsplash. Again, this can be used for a variety of looks, white brick presents a more current look while also seeming agrarian. Regular brick captures a homey rustic look, which is always a good choice for a kitchen feel.

Building on the rustic look, a great way to manifest a simple theme within a white kitchen is to install white wood paneling around the island. The white paneling around the island paired with a white brick backsplash can create a beautifully simple yet stylish kitchen theme.

Adding Color to a White Kitchen

If you want to add color to your kitchen while staying true to a white theme, adding soft compliments, red, green, blue, to a white backdrop can add charisma to a lacking kitchen. The color paired with white creates a soft color scheme that can enrich the atmosphere of the kitchen, and brighten the room itself.

Flooring can make a Difference

If you want to stick to the white, think about a dark floor to perfectly contrast the white kitchen theme. Black flooring or oak hardwood with a dark finish can add the perfect variation you may be looking for.

White isn’t the only kitchen option available, nor is it necessarily the best, but it is a proven classic and can be customized to fit the style of almost anyone. Before you think of adding a crazy color scheme to your kitchen, start with a white kitchen, because the designs are almost endless, and then you can build on it from there!

If you would like to know more about what’s trending in kitchens, contact Granite State Cabinetry today!

Making Space in Your Kitchen

Kitchens are getting smaller and smaller. If your living in an apartment in NYC or any big city for that matter, you can almost always kiss a big kitchen goodbye. An open floor plan is becoming the norm and is reducing space for kitchens. Open floor plans can be tricky to design, they often mean losing a wall of cabinets, which makes it a challenge to provide ample storage for all your kitchen items.

There are some tricks of the trade to maximize space and create more room for storage. Depending on the size and layout of the kitchen of course, you may have to get creative.

  1. Utilize the insides of your cabinets. No matter how small your kitchen is, there will always be a few cabinets, while you’re trying to stuff pots and pans into the cabinets themselves, you may not even realize that the insides of the cabinets offer largely uncharted storage space. Though it may not be ample room for pans or any large kitchen items, installing small hooks or a pegboard can allow you to hang different utensils or measuring cups, items which would normally clutter up a valuable drawer.
  2. Building on using the insides of cabinets for storage, you can also use the sides of the cabinets too. Where a cabinet block ends, right before the sink for example. Again, this method can only fit smaller utensils and such, but it will clear up more room for larger items.
  3. If you’ve stocked the cabinets and have no more space, think about adding shelving wherever there’s room. Smaller kitchens often have stretches of open wall space, which can be perfect for additional shelving and storage. Corners in the kitchen can be awkward, but adding corner shelving can turn those tough corners into crucial storage spots.
  4. Hooks, hooks, and more hooks. It may take living somewhere with a small kitchen for you to understand the value of hooks. Within cabinets, and any open wall space, hooks provide essential storage space in a small kitchen. Their durability and reliability as storage products is unmatched.
  5. If it is necessary, adding a narrow rolling cart to the side of your counter can free up some cabinet space. Using the cart as a spice rack can clear out all those spices, allowing more room for other, more frequently used kitchen items.

 

Every kitchen is different, what works for one kitchen may not work for another. If you’re kitchen feels like its closing in on you, don’t worry, you’re not alone. Remember these tips and your kitchen will feel wide open. Get creative, it may take some work, but don’t give up. Contact Granite State Cabinetry if you need help maximizing storage space for your kitchen!

Why You Should Include an Island in Your Kitchen

If your kitchen is considered the center of your home, your kitchen island is the hub of activity. The first step in effective open-concept kitchen designs is the island and any of its amenities. However, not all islands work for all kitchens.

In order to decide whether an island will work in your kitchen, list out anything that would happen at the island. Would you have a stovetop on the island to open up your cooking and meal preparation space? Do you want to have bar stools so people can relax and eat at the counter? If you lack sufficient wall space on your counter, you can use an island as a home for built-in appliances, leaving more space on the walls for cabinets and shelving. Underneath the island can also prove to be a useful space, housing small refrigerators, wine storage, dishwashers and extra cabinet space. Most modern islands include electrical outlets in order to accommodate appliances and devices, as well as designated lighting overhead or inside built-in cabinets.

Space is another factor when considering an island addition. A standard island is at least four feet long by two to three feet wide., with a minimum of 36 inches of floor space between the island and the cabinets, dishwasher or sink so doors can open with enough space for comfortable seating. If you are looking for seating around your island, a fifteen-inch overhang is recommended for sufficient knee space. The type of seating you want affects the height of your island: counter stools come with a recommended height of 34 inches, and bar stools force an island up to 40 inches. If you are planning to incorporate a stovetop, dishwasher or sink, you need to account for pipes and ventilation.

If you are looking for advice on the right island for your kitchen, contact Granite State Cabinetry. Our team of seasoned professionals will be more than happy to help you design the kitchen of your dreams, from the main features to the minor details. Fill out our contact form or give us a call at 603.472.4080.

How to Design a Restaurant Kitchen in Your Home

Restaurant kitchens tend to look more glamorous onscreen than they are, thanks to movie and TV magic. With the rise of reality TV shows taking place in the cooking world, viewers are now able to get an inside look at how restaurateurs design and run their kitchens, leading to an increase in open kitchen designs.

Function is always going to be the most important aspect of the kitchen. Many of these practical benefits can be carried over into your home kitchen, such as a worktable and open shelving. A worktable can be an island, peninsula or a separate table used for food preparation, making you work more efficiently between setups, and open shelves can be used to house decorative and practical items, such as plates and decanters. Most professional kitchens use a great amount of stainless steel because of its durability and stain resistant properties, which has led to an increase in availability of home stainless steel appliances. Oversized vent hoods over your oven allow your kitchen a more industrial feel, particularly in an open floor plan. Marble surfaces, popular among bakers, has also begun popping up across home countertops, islands and carts for dessert making.

For cooks who use their kitchen for serious cooking, a commercial-grade sink is recommended. These sinks come with separate compartments for every size pot, pan or bowl. Several manufacturers offer custom sinks made to your specific requirements. Commercial refrigerators with glass doors have also risen in popularity, allowing people who walk past to see the fridge’s contents without opening the door.

You can see a variety of kitchens anywhere onscreen, from HGTV to The Travel Channel or Food Network. The next time you see one, take note of what features you would like available in your home. Granite State Cabinetry will be more than happy to sit down with you to design your dream kitchen. Fill out our contact form or give us a call at 603.472.4080.

 

Maintaining Your New Kitchen

You finally got your new kitchen, after months of saving. Everything is exactly the way you want it, and now you have to maintain your investment. Regular cleaning will maintain both the appearance and functionality of your new cabinets and appliances.

Your cabinets may be prone to grease buildup, depending on the amount of cooking that takes place in your kitchen. You should wipe down your cabinets at least every two weeks, or more based on activity level, using a damp, soft cloth and warm water. You can add mild dishwasher soap, baking soda or vinegar if wiping them down with water doesn’t appear to be enough. If you have wooden cabinets, wipe down in the direction of the grain to keep from developing smudges. Avoid using products that will damage your cabinets, such as bleach, nail polish remover, ammonia and scouring pads. These will damage any paint or stains and create scratches across your cabinets. You should also avoid leaving wet or damp dishcloths draped on your cabinet doors to maintain its finish and color.

In order to avoid sun damage, you should keep curtains on your kitchen windows to reduce the direct sunlight hitting your doors. Curtains can also help prevent heat damage from enough sunlight. When using the self-cleaning feature on your oven, remove the nearest cabinet doors and drawers to minimize risk of heat damage. You want your kitchen to look and work its best, and heat damage is not something people often think about.

There are things that can be done to minimize grime buildup while cooking. Using an exhaust fan built into your stove keeps grease from splattering onto nearby cabinets. Spills, splatters and other messes should be cleaned as soon as possible as to not damage finishes or leave stains. Following these tips can maintain your new kitchen for years to come. If you are looking to remodel, Granite State Cabinetry has been providing Southern NH residents with professional kitchen design advice for years, listening to your needs and budgetary needs. Give us a call today at 603.472.4080 or request a free quote!

 

Choosing a Kitchen Backsplash

Picking out a kitchen backsplash is a time-consuming process with a multitude of factors to consider, from color and material to height and kitchen activity. How noticeable do you want it to be? How much do you cook?

What colors are used throughout your kitchen? Your backsplash should complement the rest of the room. If you are looking for your kitchen to be a calm, serene center of your home, decorated with neutral greys and browns, a bright red backsplash might not be what you’re looking for. If you have a mostly light kitchen that could use a splash of color, something bold might be more appropriate.

Material is another key factor in determining the right backsplash for your home. Almost anything can be used in a backsplash, such as wood, brick or tile. If you are someone who cooks often and adventurously, a glass or stainless steel backsplash would be easier to clean and could complement your appliances or the colors of your cabinets and countertops. Design is another factor. Do you want your backsplash to match your personality or do you want to keep it timeless to assist in a potential future sale? Neutral patterns and colors may help your home if you’re looking to move in the near future, but if you’re looking for a kitchen to love for the long haul, pick a pattern that suits your home’s personality. Have your backsplash take up a wall if you’re placing it away from cabinets, or place it behind floating shelves.

Your budget will also be a factor. Different materials and colors will vary in price. For instance, subway tile is more affordable than brick or elaborate stone, but may not be available in custom colors or the design you are looking for. If you are looking to cut corners, you may consider mixing and matching material in the pattern you want for your kitchen.

Looking for inspiration for your ideal kitchen? The kitchen designers at Granite State Cabinetry offer Southern NH residents with professional kitchen design advice. Offering top brands in cabinets, countertops and hardware, Granite State Cabinetry will help you design the ideal kitchen for you. Contact us at (603) 472-4080 or request a free quote from us today!

Will Dark Floors Be Popular This Year?

Neutral wood flooring has become an outdated trend as homeowners are now turning to bold looks. It’s not only dark floors that will be popular this year, in fact, we can expect to see a whole spectrum of colors.

Dark Wood Floors

Paired with white cabinetry and light countertops, dark stained wood floors create an absolutely eye-catching kitchen. However, dark floors can make the room look smaller so if you have an open floor plan, this would be the perfect space to incorporate dark hardwood floors. In the upcoming years, we’ll be seeing more espresso brown and black wood.

Blonde Wood Floors

As we’ve discussed in past blogs, bamboo flooring is certainly trending. Light colors are ideal for small kitchens as they brighten up the room and make the kitchen appear open. Blonde wood floors also hide dust better so you don’t need to worry about sweeping everyday.

Gray Wood Floors

Gray hardwood floors actually started popping up in homes several years ago and we don’t see them going out of style anytime soon. Gray wood floors are starting to outrank red, warm tones because they showcase natural grains and grooves of the wood.

Extreme Grain

Choose a wood floor whose texture guides your eyes to the floor. A light wood with dark knots creates a charming rustic look. Some homeowners adore wire brushing or hand scraping to add a bit of texture to their floors. Keep in mind that a heavily-textured floor collects dust so you’ll need to be cleaning fairly often.

Hardwood Designs

While some people prefer nearly invisible lines on their hardwood floors, others are moving in another direction with geometric hardwood designs. Contrasting colors of hardwood are positioned in a herringbone style, usually in the direction you want a person’s eye to follow. If designs are too overwhelming, hardwood can be placed diagonally.

Granite State Cabinetry provides Southern NH residents with professional kitchen design advice. We have been in the industry for years and know how to design a kitchen that is both functional and elegant. Our staff listens to your needs and works within your budget to provide you with a kitchen that is affordable and up-to-date. Give us a call today at 603.472.4080!

 

 

Why Homeowners Fall in Love with Espresso Cabinets

While white cabinetry remains the #1 choice for homeowners, espresso kitchen cabinets are increasing in popularity. The deep brown beautifully complements the classic whites, blues and green hues. Espresso cabinets truly bring warmth to the kitchen, transforming it from a functional space to a cozy hangout area.

Espresso kitchen cabinets balance out any over-the-top décor you may have to beautifully blend contemporary and traditional flair. Whether you’re trying to balance out vibrant blues on your kitchen stools or break up the dull white tiles on your floor, espresso cabinets provide warmth and charm to any kitchen.

If you aren’t ready for a total kitchen overhaul, you can quickly stain your cabinets. Opt for solid wood with an espresso finish or a metallic finish. Espresso finishes easily blend with any style of kitchen. Distressed espresso cabinets are perfect for those seeking an antique look. Shaker-style cabinets come in espresso finishes and work brilliantly for those who want a modern, clean looking kitchen.

Looking for a mix of contemporary and classic? Add some deep reds to your kitchen for a relaxed look and add some nickel-plated hardware along with glass fronts. This design transforms your kitchen into a contemporary, classic charm. You can also pair your cabinets with a traditional style door for a sophisticated look. Whatever the case may be, espresso cabinets fit with any style kitchen.

The kitchen designers at Granite State Cabinetry offer Southern NH residents with professional kitchen design advice. Offering the best brands in the industry such as Plain & Fancy, Omega, Medallion, Cabico and Dynasty, we ensure our clients receive both beautiful and functional kitchens.

Top Kitchen Floor Ideas in 2017

If you’re considering remodeling your kitchen, there are plenty of materials for flooring but choosing the right one can be a tricky process. You’ll want something that is both affordable and timeless so you don’t need to worry about installing new floors years later.

Bamboo

While bamboo has certainly been a popular floor trend in the past, the array of colors and styles has rapidly grown in recent years. Strand-woven bamboo uses inner fibers making them twice as durable as standard bamboo. This material now comes in wide-plank styles to give the illusion of hardwood floors.

Reclaimed Wood

If you’re looking for the “hand-hewn” look, reclaimed wood is the best option. Since this is factory finished wood, it can easily withstand moisture fluctuations than standard wood flooring.

Large-Format Tile

There has been an explosive amount of sizes, shapes, materials and patterns when it comes to the world of tile. Large-format tiles have grown in popularity, coming in sizes of 12” x 24” and 36” x 36”; these stray away from the typical 12” x 12” tiles. One of the major benefits of having such large sized tiles is that there is more tile surface and less grout.

Cork

Cork is a perfect insulator and is significantly more comfortable to walk on than regular hardwood. New factory finishes have been produced, leaving cork extremely durable and coming in a wide variety of colors. However, cork can be damaged by moisture and will fade if exposed to sunlight.

American Hardwood

American hardwood is still going strong! When it comes to cork and bamboo, the materials need to be shipped from other parts of the world but hardwoods can be bought from forests in the U.S. It’s quite easy to purchase oak, hickory, maple, and heart pine.

Concrete

Concrete is no longer associated with swanky New York penthouses. Now, concrete can be seen in all types of homes and there is a multitude of colors and finishes available. The surface is hard, however, so it’s not too comfortable to walk on.

Ready for new flooring in your Southern NH kitchen? Contact Granite State Cabinetry to get in touch with one of our expert designers. Fill out our contact form or give us a call at 603.472.4080.

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