HOW TO BUILD A CUSTOM HOME, Part 8: Interior Design Features — A Kitchen You'll Be Proud to Show Off

In this series, the professionals at the B.O.L.D. Company will take you through the process of building a custom home in the Greater Cincinnati – Northern Kentucky area. From plan and lot selection, to mortgage approval, to the actual construction, we’ll take you behind-the-scenes each week for an inside look at a different part of the process.

This week, we look at kitchen design ideas:

With the growing popularity of open floor plans, the kitchen has become more of a focal point than in generations past: the kitchen is a place to entertain, and thus, a focus of style and decorating, in addition to retaining its more practical purposes.

Designers have two methods of addressing this dilemma: (1) decorating around customized or high-end appliances that you’ll be proud to show off; or (2) hiding the appliances with custom cabinetry.

“Showy” appliances include high-end stainless steel varieties, those with copper trim or accessories, or professional grade appliances. The latter can serve a dual purpose if you do a lot of cooking, catering, or entertaining.

There are many things you can do to make your appliances “blend in”, or to hide them altogether. Increasingly, appliances are available with changeable front panels to match the cabinetry color and style (think of a dishwasher or trash compactor front panel). Custom cabinetry can make other appliances “disappear.” Drop doors, “roll top” doors, and sliding doors make good cubby holes for small appliances, such as toasters, coffee makers, and blenders. A “microwave cabinet” hides the clunky white or black box. Even the refrigerator can have “armoire” style doors designed to open and close around its space. Built-in refrigerators and dishwashers blend even more easily. Refrigerated drawers can hide within the island, for instance, or a built-in refrigerator can sit atop freezer drawers below.

After the cabinets, the second most noticeable surface in the kitchen is the countertop. Today’s countertops must be both practical and showy. Durable and stylish options are readily available for every budget.

The economical choice is a laminate top, such as those made by Formica or WilsonArt. Available in a wide range of colors, designs, and styles, you can find laminates that mimic just about any kind of natural surface. The disadvantage is that laminates crack or chip fairly easily, and repair of this damage is not so easy.

Ceramic tile is very durable, and it is one of the few do-it-yourself options for kitchen tops. The necessary grout between tiles can be difficult to keep clean, however, and it must be regularly sealed in order to resist moisture.

Solid surface acrylics are becoming increasingly popular for their durability, non-porous water resistance, easy scratch repair (just sand and buff out), and their wide arrange of colors, designs, and styles. Products such as Corian and Avonite produce a good product for a competitive price, making solid surface acrylics a great middle-of-the-road price option.

High end natural surface options include granite, marble, quartz, and even concrete. These products are beautiful, but the high cost does not ensure indestructability. Each of these products are prone to cracking, and none (with the possible exception of concrete) will withstand the damage inflicted by a hot pan (but neither will any of the other options, with the possible exception of ceramic tile).

B.O.L.D. Homes, a B.O.L.D. company, has been established as among the premiere Greater Cincinnati / Northern Kentucky custom home builders since 1986. We have well over 500 customer designed homes to our credit. Work one-on-one with the owners of the company – including a licensed real estate broker, a licensed real estate agent, a licensed professional engineer, and a CAD draftsman/designer – to design your dream home full of the features important to you. We can help you find a balance between luxury and budget.

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