What does it take to design a kitchen?

design-a-kitchenI think I am going to need a book for this one!

Here are a few things that are necessary:

Budget
An idea of the “look” you want
What type of appliances
Time frame

Let’s take this one by one.

First, the budget: for most people this is the scariest part of the process. Why? Many people feel if they let the designer know this figure they will spend all their money. Truth be told, that is a guideline for us. We need to know where to start.

Let me give you an example. Let’s say you want a new car. There are many cars out there with enormous price differences. There are the $10,000.00 cars and there are $100,000.00 cars. Not to mention all the ones in between. Yes, they all have four wheels and will get you from point A to point B but you have to admit with the price difference there are differences. The fit and the finish not to mention the amenities will all vary.

It is the same with cabinets. Depending on what you want to spend, there will be differences. This is where your budget meets reality. This is also where your priorities will need to be assessed. We can help you do that.

Have a look in mind. Look at home magazines and cut out the pictures. Scan the internet and print the pictures. Put notes on these pictures to remind yourself why you liked the picture. Show your designer all of the pictures you have gathered. We can easily see what the common thread is between the photos. That gives us a good starting point.

Go to an appliance showroom. See what appeals to you. If you have a medium to large kitchen, look at a cooktop and separate ovens. Small kitchens, however, need to combine items. For instance, instead of a cooktop and wall ovens, look at a range and a microwave above. This is really a space saver. Not only will your kitchen feel larger, you will have more counter area.

Shopping for your appliances, but not purchasing, will help your designer enormously. It is quite a different scenario when designing for a free standing range with a microwave above and a totally different scenario with a commercial cooktop with double ovens, warming drawer and a built in microwave. Contrary to what you might believe, there is no button we push on the computer that switches the design from one to another.

Have a time frame in mind. I cannot tell you how many times over the years people have wanted to have their kitchens ready for the holidays or for what I call “life events”. Life events are graduations, wedding, etc. Many times people come in expecting this is a four week process from start to finish. (This is not a TV show where it is done in thirty minutes!)

Please remember, the design process can be two to four weeks itself. You must allow time to have the designer design the space and present it to you. You will then need time to contemplate what you have seen. You may or may not have changes to the design which the designer has to implement. Then the job is repriced.

When you sign on the dotted line, the cabinets will be ordered. Cabinet deliveries vary from four to sixteen weeks. Then, the cabinet installation happens. Remember, it more than just the cabinets that are installed, there are countertops, floors, appliances, plumbing and electrical.

If a stone top is used, the bases must be in before the templating of the counter can be done. Only after the template is done will the top be fabricated. Usually, stone tops will take two weeks but that can vary.

As you can see, this all takes time. And there can be glitches along the way. Cabinets come in damaged, the sink is on backorder, the remodeler is sick etc. Life happens.

There is no question this is an investment. It is an investment in time, money as well as the enjoyment of your home.

Remember, “Good design doesn’t cost more than bad design. It is, however, far less painful to do it right the first time”.

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