‘remodeling’ Category

Choosing the Perfect Sink for your Remodel

Now that you’ve selected the perfect solid surface or granite countertop for your newly renovated kitchen or bathroom, your next decision is choosing the perfect sink. With so many options on the market today, Granite Transformations is here to put it all in perspective for you with an easy guide to making the perfect choice.
Stainless Steel Sinks – Experts agree. Stainless steel sinks are the best choice to complement your granite or solid surface countertops because of their undermount capability and durability. Look for lower-gauge stainless steel when selecting your sink to ensure the highest quality and longevity.

Stainless Steel Kitchen Sink Complements Granite Countertops.

Enamel-Coated Cast Iron Sinks – Consumers today still prefer enamel-coated sinks for their beauty and aesthetic qualities. Experts warn, however, that if you are tough on it, an enamel coated cast iron sink may scratch and wear over time.
Enamel Coated Cast Iron Sinks may Scratch & Wear.

Composite Sinks – New to the market and more budget-friendly than other sinks, composite sinks are another option for homeowners. Several types of composite sinks are available, polyester/acrylic being one of them. They are available in an array of colors which are appealing to consumers. Keep in mind, however, that they aren’t as durable as other sink options and tend to be more difficult to clean since they are installed as a ‘drop-in sink’ rather than as an undermount.
Budget-Friendly Composite Sinks with Many Color Options.

One Bowl or Two? – Depending on your space, experts suggest choosing a sink that has at least one oversized sink bowl and one small bowl for kitchens or bathrooms with limited space. If space isn’t an issue, one oversized bowl and one standard sized bowl is best.
Double sinks can vary, based upon the kitchen or bathroom counter space available.

Sizing Your Sink to Your Kitchen – Most homeowners will install their sinks under a window with a view. Be sure to measure the width of the window and select a sink that will complement the size, so that it isn’t too big for a small window or too small for a larger one.
Choose a kitchen sink size that will complement your kitchen window.

Sizing Your Sink to Your Cooking Needs – For avid cooks who might prefer hand-washing their dishes rather than using the dishwasher, experts suggest choosing a large divided bowl sink with an integrated drain board. This wider-style sink allows for more than one cook in the kitchen (dare we say it…?) to avoid getting in each other’s way. Be aware, however, that this size sink is generally more expensive, will require an extra-wide sink cabinet, and also take up much more space. It is recommended for larger kitchens or bathrooms. Large divided sinks are recommended for larger kitchens or bathrooms.

Multiple Sinks/Fun-Sized Sinks – Homeowners today are opting for islands in their kitchens that are equipped with a smaller sink for quick clean-ups. Having more than one sink in the kitchen saves time and allows for a more stress-free cooking and entertaining environment. Linear sinks (or ‘fun-sized sinks’ as they are affectionately being referred to these days) are the perfect choice for quick water breaks and can be used as a mini-cooler to store ice and chilled drinks for parties and game days. (This ends the need of an unsightly cooler and unending, energy-draining trips to the refrigerator.)
Linear or fun-sized sinks provide the ability for stress-free cooking and entertaining.

Granite Transformations is ready to assist you with a free in-home consultation. One of our professional design consultants is only a call or click away.

How to Save for Your Dream Kitchen

Saving for your kitchen renovation is as easy as applying a few strategic saving techniques to your budget. Here are some money-saving ideas to help you get one step closer to your dream kitchen:

  • Assess your budget and begin trimming expenses where you can. For example, scale back your cable bill, limit clothing purchases and dining out to free up extra cash.

Saving for your kitchen renovation - trim expenses & track spending

  • Before you buy something, ask yourself if you really need it.
  • Set a realistic goal and begin saving a set amount every month to reach your goal. You can even set up automatic monthly deposits from your checking into your savings account.
  • Set aside any income tax refunds and apply these to your kitchen renovation fund.
  • Stop or reduce spending on your credit cards. Reducing debt before a big purchase can lessen the burden of making payments and frees up additional money in your budget.
  • Stay focused on your goal and tailor all spending to live within your budget.
  • Frequently check your bank statements to ensure there is no frivolous or unnecessary spending happening.

Schedule a free in-home design consultation with a Granite Transformation design professional and start planning your dream kitchen today – it’s easy and stress-free. We look forward to earning your business and making your dream kitchen a reality.

Planning Your Summertime Dinner Party

If you are one of many homeowners who have recently renovated their kitchen, now is the perfect time to show it off by hosting a summertime dinner party. Whether you’re hosting a formal sit-down dinner or a more casual buffet-style soirée, here are some entertaining tips for a memorable occasion.

  • Who’s Coming to Dinner? – Write out your guest list and send invites at least three weeks in advance so that you can plan your seating and grocery or catering list to gauge how much food you will need.
  • What Are You Serving? – Warm weather entertaining typically brings lighter foods, colder drinks and a more relaxed atmosphere. Choose grilled meats or fish for your main course and serve lighter salads with a vinaigrette dressing instead of heavier mayo-based salads. Assorted grilled vegetables or steamed vegetables tossed in olive oil and fresh garlic are an easy way to serve your sides at room temperature without the fuss of keeping them hot.

Summertime dinner party meal ideas.

  • Drink Up! – For a fun bar setting, let your guests make their own drinks by offering a specialty drink. Flavor-infused vodkas with a selection of juices and mixers are a great way to get the party started. Offer chilled beer and wine to round out your bar. Be sure to offer non-alcoholic beverages to your guests and don’t forget the cardinal rule…you can never have enough ice!

Drinks can help get the conversation flowing when guests arrive.

  • Set the Mood – Choose music to set the overall mood for the party and select your playlist a few days ahead. During the first hour when guests are arriving, choose songs that will get the party started as everyone settles in, mingles and relaxes. For dinner, select music that is relaxing (but not so soothing that your guests want to take a nap after dinner). For dessert, pump it again, but this time create a montage of songs that are reminiscent of times spent together to create a feeling of nostalgia. Your guests will leave with a happy heart.

Show off your new kitchen with a summer dinner party

Tips and Suggestions to Host the Perfect Summer Dinner Party:

  • Iron your napkins and tablecloths a few days before your party.
  • Set your table ahead of time.
  • Empty your dishwasher.
  • Keep centerpieces low and elegant for easy conversation.
  • Serve beautifully arranged appetizers “family style” at the dinner table.
  • Use your china. (What are you saving it for?)
  • Set up the bar the day before. Start making ice, or buy enough ice and store in a cooler.
  • Decide on which platters and serving pieces you will be using.
  • Plan seating and use place cards for cordial and stress-free conversation.
  • Serve one-bite appetizers and have bowls of munchies and dips on cocktail tables and buffets.
  • If you plan to grill, make sure you have an extra propane tank on hand or fill the one you have.
  • Allow for grill time while your guests are mingling before dinner.
  • Don’t be shy when your guests ask to bring something. Keep a list of items you may want – like a unique dessert, a specialty coffee, or even a favorite family recipe side dish.
  • Don’t forget the powder room. Placing a pretty flower arrangement and disposable guest towels in your powder room are elegant ways to show your guests you are thinking of them.

If a new kitchen or bath renovation is on your summer to-do list or you’re interested in learning more, the experts at Granite Transformations are only a call or click away. Contact us today for a free in-home consultation.

Empty-Nesters Find Creative Ways to Transform Their New Found Space

Let’s face it. If you’re a parent of a graduating high school senior, your emotions may be running high. Anticipation of “Graduation Day,” impending college expenses and knowing your family life will be forever changed can leave you on an emotional rollercoaster. With empty-nesters discovering their new-found freedom, they are also realizing their homes have just increased by one room (or sometimes more). Although some parents may rope off their son’s or daughter’s room as a shrine to their childhood, others are embracing the realization that although the kids are away at school, they will be back (and most likely bring friends).

Some of the more popular room transformations range from the designing of a man-cave for dad with a cool home theatre or media room (complete with full remote control access), to a sewing and crafting room for mom, or even a gym for both deserving parents to enjoy. With a free in-home design consultation from Granite Transformations®, your dreams for a new space are only a call or click away.

: Create your own craft space with cabinets and countertops from Granite Transformations. A home gym is the perfect way to transform your new found space.

Here are a few fun ideas to turn your new found space into an exciting and functional retreat:

Media Room/Home Theatre: Today’s homeowners are discovering media rooms as a multi-purpose space designed around a large, flat-screen television and outfitted with surround sound and cozy seating. Whether you’re converting a spare bedroom or transforming a larger space (like a garage or basement), your new media room will be the hot spot for entertaining friends and family, streaming music, or it may be your private sanctuary for escaping to watch a favorite movie or even getting lost in your favorite book.

Sewing & Crafting Room: With the kids off to college or moved out of the house, today’s moms are embracing their lighter schedules by finding the time to tap into their creative sides. With the expert advice of the design consultants from Granite Transformations, your new sewing and crafting room could be only days away. Beautiful cabinetry, granite or quartz countertops and even an island for those larger crafting projects make the perfect backdrop for your dream space.

Home Gym: Keeping fit and healthy can be challenging these days because of our demanding schedules. Having the convenience of a home gym leaves the excuses at the door, and opens up the possibilities of balancing the demands of work with staying healthy.

Embrace your new found space and consider a quick and easy remodel by contacting the experts at Granite Transformations for a free in-home design consultation.

Tips for Remodeling a Small Kitchen

by Marcello Becchi mbecchi@trend-group.com

Smaller kitchens can be cozy and inviting, and instill a sense of warmth and charm to your home. Homeowners today are embracing the remodeling of their small kitchen areas as more options are available to them, with exciting creative ideas springing up right before their eyes. Two of the immediate questions you’ll ask yourself is, “How will I fit everything?” and “Where will it go?” Remember to consider the best options for storage, lighting and appliances, and to keep them at the top your list when planning your beautiful new space.

Small Kitcehn Remodeling by Granite Transformation Get Small Kitchen Remodeling Ideas from Granite Transformations

Granite Transformations® offers these space-saving tips to spark your imagination and inspire your dream kitchen:

Multitask – When space is at a minimum, maximize its functionality by looking for spaces that can be used for more than one purpose. One example is opting for an island or peninsula, instead of setting up a traditional table and chair ensemble. This family-friendly gathering space offers a spot for casual meals in addition to extra work space and storage. Some can even be equipped with a small sink to allow for quick clean-ups on those busy nights.

Smaller and Compact Appliances – Appliance manufacturers have met the demands of creating a more efficient space for small kitchen owners by offering a range of space-saving and compact appliances, such as refrigerators that are 24 inches deep (instead of 30 inches deep) and microwave ovens that can be hung underneath cabinets to save precious counter space.

Smart Storage – Maximize your storage space by increasing the depth of your countertops to accommodate more appliances and increase work space.

Maximize Counter Space – Opting for one large countertop rather than smaller ones throughout the kitchen creates a more open space, and is more functional for busy cooks who are looking for extra room. Another great tip is incorporating a cutting board that can slide over the sink to expand the countertop even more.

Cabinets – Think “up” when planning your cabinet layout. Utilizing the empty space above traditional cabinets creates a feeling of grandeur and is the perfect place to store your seasonal dishes, platters or bakeware. Yes, they may be a bit harder to reach, but grabbing a step stool a few times a year is worth the increase in space you’ll enjoy every day. You may also want to consider having a spice rack cabinet tucked inside one of your doors. It’s a great way to organize your spices and free up counter space.

Strategic Lighting – Installing under-the-counter lighting can create an illusion of more space, which will not only make your kitchen appear larger but add a touch of ambiance as well.

Adding a Large Window for Natural Light – Let the sun shine into your beautiful new kitchen by opting for a large bay window. The sunshine will not only light your kitchen but bring the soothing effect of a sunny day into your home.

Flooring – If you’re considering replacing your flooring with tile, opt for placing the tiles on a diagonal, which will give the illusion of a larger space.

Open Shelving – Displaying your dishes and bowls on open shelving reduces clutter and offers a more relaxed and casual feel.

Make it Happen – It all starts with a click of your mouse or a quick call to your local Granite Transformations dealer to schedule a free in-home design consultation that will turn your dream kitchen into a reality. Granite Transformations makes it easy and we take the guesswork out of the entire process. Your new kitchen can be only one day away…

 

The Advantages of Quartz Countertops: Leaving No Stone Unturned

Having to make one more decision in our busy lives can be overwhelming. Kitchen and bath renovations can take us from calm to crazy in a matter of minutes, so educating ourselves on the best choices for our lifestyles can be the best strategy to minimizing the mayhem and make the process more fun and productive.
In recent years, homeowners ditched their laminate countertops for the more trendy and sophisticated look of granite. In an age where we are constantly evolving and wanting the best bang for our buck, educated consumers are discovering quartz to be the hottest trend in countertops as its popularity is soaring in kitchens and baths across the country.
Made from a mixture of quartz and ForeverSeal®, Granite Transformations® offers quartz countertops in several beautiful fashion-forward colors: Perla Bianca, Perla di Sabbia, Crema Luna, Fire Beige, King Ivory, Pietra Serena, Ivory, Sunset Beach, and Bianco Reale.

Quartz Kitchen Countertop from Granite Transformations

Here are some reasons why you should consider quartz when determining the best countertop surface for your home:
• Quartz is very strong, so it is therefore less prone to scratches and chips.
• Quartz is heat-resistant, allowing for a more stress-free cooking environment when you need to set that hot pot down somewhere.
• Quartz is a non-porous surface (making it stain-resistant), thus eliminating the worry of spilled coffee, wine or even olive oil leaving unsightly marks on your countertop.
• Quartz’s non-porous nature makes it more difficult for environmental bacteria, mold and mildew to grow, so it is the ideal choice for kitchens and baths. This provides an extra layer of protection and peace-of-mind…and makes it easier to clean.
• Quartz is available in a spectrum of colors and has a more uniform appearance, creating a sleek and sophisticated look.
• Quartz countertops are environmentally green – meaning they are safe and virtually free from emitting radon gas (a colorless, odorless gas which has been known to be the second leading cause of lung cancer in America, according to the EPA).
Whether you’re ready to create a beautiful new look for your kitchen, bath (or both), considering a quartz countertop from Granite Transformations is today’s fresh alternative to other countertop materials. Schedule a Free In-Home Consultation now!

5 Apps to Help Your Remodel Go Smoother

Starting a home remodel can feel like a daunting process, even for those who have a few home improvement projects already under their belt. Aside from having the proper tooling and know-how to get the job done, it’s equally important to have a sound remodeling plan that will help get you there.

Thankfully, with the advent of technology, there are some new ways for the home improvement amateur, or professional, to get started in putting together the home of their dreams. And it can all begin by spending a few minutes browsing for an app on your smart phone or tablet.

 

The Applications of My Eye

 

ColorSchemer is an app that allows you to work from a large color palette so you can finally hone in on some of the inspiration you’ve gathered from magazines, other homes or elsewhere. With this app you can quickly explore your favorite colors and what shades will also compliment them. It also includes a large community where you can get ideas from other COLOURlovers that have submitted their own samples to the app.

 

ColorSchemer Touch Screenshots

 

Houzz Interior Design Ideas has been touted as the “Wikipedia of interior design” and houses a large database of over one million high-resolution photos for ideas on what kind of project you want to begin. There is also a community where you can share successes you’ve had during a remodel or gather ideas on how to simplify your plans.

 

Houzz Interior Design Ideas

 

Planese is a must-have app for anyone who’s just beginning to build the idea around what kind of remodeling work to do around the home. It features ways to create budgets, schedules and designs that help you plan out your project from start to finish. The app also features homeowners and experts who are there to give you tips and tricks on the best approaches to a task.

 

Planese Interior Design and Planning App

 

Room Design is one of the more technical, yet thorough, apps available for a home remodel. You start by creating a space with their software and laying it out with a few simple drags of your finger, setting the room area, textures and type. Instead of visualizing what a dramatic change in features or structure would look like, this app lets you see it in real-time. You can also save and email a 3D-rendered image for those who want to share their ideas with their contractor or friends.

 

Room Design App Screenshot

 

My Measures Pro maps out your project’s measurements just by taking a photo of the area and adding a few angles and arrows to the picture. This lets you figure out what items you’ll need in order to start and finish your remodel – cleanly organizing the measurements for you or your contractor. You’re also able to add notes to your photos so there won’t be a need to hunt down your pen and pad of paper.

 

My Measures and Dimensions Pro App Screenshot

 

Using apps during the design, planning and even in the midst of the remodeling process finally bridges the gap between swinging a hammer and swiping your finger across your smart phone. And with tools to enable collaboration from others who have had experience in changing a home’s features, it can save money and extra trips to the store.

Things to Avoid in Creating a Kitchen Design You’ll Love for Years

Today’s trends can soon be tomorrow’s faux pas, so doing your homework when it comes to making the right design choices in your kitchen remodel is critical to creating a timeless, classic look. The last thing you want is to spend your money on improvements that will be considered yesterday’s news and outdated within a year or two.
Here are some of the top trending tips to avoid, thus ensuring that your remodel will look beautiful and contemporary for years to come:
Colorful Appliances – Opt for stainless steel appliances. The latest trend with appliance manufacturers is to sell the notion that white, arctic or ice is the new stainless. Some may argue the point, but the truth is, stainless remains the go-to finish for its versatility in accessorizing any décor, whether it be contemporary or traditional.
On-the-Counter Microwaves and Over-the-Stove Microwaves – Today’s state-of-the-art kitchens are featuring under-the-counter microwaves. Not only do they fit in seamlessly with your cabinets, but they save on precious counter space and make busy family schedules more efficient by installing them at an accessible height for children. (There’s no need to worry because they are equipped with safety locks for homes with toddlers.) And let’s not forget that this will reduce the risk of those unforeseen burns from spills when removing food from over-the-stove microwaves. Ouch!
Large Custom Built Range Hoods and Hanging Pot Racks – Although they were popular a few years back, large range hoods and hanging pot racks tend to create a cluttered feel. Today’s homeowners are opting for a more open kitchen concept and prefer storing their cookware in deep roll-out drawers for easy accessibility.
Appliance Garages – As funny as it may sound to house your small appliances behind closed doors, these small garages were a popular trend in the 1980’s and 1990’s, taking up precious counter space. Today’s homeowners mostly choose to keep their most often-used appliances proudly displayed on the counter, or they opt for pull-out drawers as the places to keep their mixers or blenders.
Farmhouse Sinks – From 2011-2012, farmhouse apron-front kitchen sinks were all the rage. Today, they are quickly becoming outdated. Stainless steel and granite sinks remain the timeless choice for durability and style.
Built-in Desk Areas – Let’s face it, having a desk in the kitchen is like having a treadmill in the den. The initial intention was there, but we soon found ourselves using these desks for the wrong reasons (such as using it as a place to drop our keys and mail or throw our coats over after a long day). Free up that precious kitchen real estate and create a space that’s functional and fun (perhaps a small wet bar for entertaining).
With so many decisions and choices to make, one thing is clear…creating a kitchen space that is classic and functional will not only bring you years of enjoyment, but will save you money in the long run by avoiding a do-over only a few years later.

Surprise Your Sweetie with These Home Improvement Gifts

If you’re like most people, finding a unique and heartfelt gift for your sweetheart on Valentine’s Day can cause a little anxiety. So, set aside the flowers, box of candy and don’t make those reservations just yet, because we’ve got some great tips on how to ensure this year’s gift will be remembered for years to come.

 

Being with the person you love is no different than being in a home you love. And there are few things more exciting to a relationship, or a home, than taking something that’s already good and making it even better. Granite Transformations can take your living space to the next level, creating an ambiance that reignites your passion for your living space, and is guaranteed to make your significant other smile.

 

Kissing the Cook

Every room in your home gets its fair share of traffic and activity, but none more than the kitchen, which is often the heart of every household. It doesn’t matter if you’re living in an older Victorian-style or a newly-built modern home, changing the layout, or just improving the overall feel of a kitchen, can improve more than the aesthetic.

 

Woman admiring her newly remodeled kitchen more »

Home Ideas from Our Favorite Hotels

Inspiration for your home can be found anywhere. Whether it’s a show on TV, a spread in a magazine, or a hotel keep an eye out for ideas to implement into your designs. Here are a few rooms that stood out to us from our favorite hotels across the world.

 

Harbour Rocks Hotel

This gorgeous hotel in Sydney, Australia is a perfect example of how to blend two styles while creating your own distinct look. With rooms ranging from modern to classic, the two aesthetics blend together in the lobby, creating a comfortable yet minimalist space. Every room here is immaculately designed, but it’s the kitchen that stands out to us.

Painted in warm colors and mixing stone, tile, and granite, this room is surprising to the eye. The white granite countertop offsets the darker colors beautifully, and the shelf space is minimally designed and elegant. If you have a lot of space to work with, consider a modern look like this. Bonus points for big bay windows, letting in lots of natural light.

 

harbour_rocks_hotel_granite_transformations

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