Islands- The Heart of the Kitchen

Islands. Aren’t they all great? Hawaiian Islands, Fiji Islands, …Kitchen Islands! Yes, let’s talk kitchen islands. Islands are designed for all different reasons; however, they all share the common purpose of being the heart of the kitchen. Not only are they physically the center of the kitchen, but they are also a place where family and friends can gather. Today, let’s discover the different functions for islands and how each of them fulfill their own role as being the heart of the kitchen.

Furniture Piece Islands

Furniture piece islands may not incorporate functions such as cooktops and sinks, but they do add character and aesthetics to the kitchen. Typically, furniture piece islands have the ability to fit in smaller kitchens because of their size. They often provide the perfect element of charm to a kitchen. Below are a couple of islands that add a finishing touch to each of the spaces they occupy.

This beautiful custom island is the rustic charm of this kitchen.
This beautiful custom island is the rustic charm of this kitchen.
This island, characterized by its unique storage solutions, stands out among the other cabinetry.
This island, characterized by its unique storage solutions, stands out among the other cabinetry.

Islands Made for Function

Some islands are designed with a greater purpose than just desireable aesthetics. Cooktops, sinks, and so many other functions can be incorporated into an island. This allows for preparing food while entertaining guests. It also frees up some of the surrounding countertop space. Below are a few islands that were definitely designed with function in mind while still looking fabulous at the same time.

This island is PERFECT for this large kitchen! A cooktop, storage, and beauty all incorporated in one piece!
This island is PERFECT for this large kitchen! A cooktop, storage, and beauty all incorporated in one piece!
This butcher block countertop allows accessible heights with the push of a button! How cool of an island would that be? Perfect heights for chopping, serving, and everything in between!
This butcher block countertop allows accessible heights with the push of a button! How cool of an island would that be? Perfect heights for chopping, serving, and everything in between!

Islands for Seating and Entertaining

How about an island with functionality AND room for everyone? Due to the trend of open spaces, many islands are being designed with seating incorporated. This brings family and friends together multiple times throughout the day for different purposes whether it’s a meal, snack, homework, or family game night. Take a look at these islands with seating! Which is your favorite?

Unconventional seating for this island makes for a beautiful, relaxing space. Perfect for morning coffee!
Unconventional seating for this island makes for a beautiful, relaxing space. Perfect for morning coffee!
What about an island that doubles as a table? The seating makes this kitchen an inviting room.
What about an island that doubles as a table? The seating makes this kitchen an open invitation.
A cooktop, sink, storage, AND seating all in one! This island has it all!
A cooktop, sink, storage, AND seating all in one! This island has it all!

When picking out your kitchen, decide what purpose you want your island to serve. Is it to add a little charm to the room? Is function your desire? Maybe you want your kitchen to be a space that everyone gathers in? Whatever the purpose, remember that the island is the heart of the kitchen!

Ashley Robinson, Public Relations and Social Media Specialist

arobinson@wellborn.com

How To: Turn Your Inspiration Into Reality Through Color

Inspiration touches everyone. This blog is about ways to incorporate that inspiration through color in your own home.

You don’t have to be an artist to be inspired. Inspiration actually happens in real everyday life for everyone, if the time is taken to acknowledge it.

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Step 1: Discover your inspiration. 

Maybe your inspiration comes from something sentimental such as your grandmothers kitchen wallpaper that you spent hours looking at while helping her bake your favorite pie. Maybe it stems from nature such as the ocean or a flower that you watch bloom every spring. It could be something as simple as a bright red front door on a house that you pass everyday going to work. Whatever your inspiration is rooted from, there are ways to bring it to life in your own home.

Step 2: Choose where to display.

Inspiration can be displayed in all kinds of ways throughout a home. It can be as extreme as a wall color or cabinet color and as minor as a few small decorations. If you are really inspired, maybe give a room a motif to carry out your inspiration through several details. Craft rooms, offices, kitchens, and bathrooms are a few rooms that are perfect for inspiration. A wonderful example of inspiration put to use in a little girl’s bathroom is the shown below.

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Step 3: Choose a color.

When choosing a color, it is important to pick something that won’t get old fast. This may be easier said than done considering even the brightest of colors are exciting for the first few months. If you have any doubts about such dramatic change, start small. Pull the color into the design through small details. Sometimes an accent wall will do the trick. Sometimes it’s okay to go over the top with color. After choosing a location, decide the color and how much of it you want displayed. Below are a few ways that color can be minimal or maximal.  Basically, if you love it, go for it.

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Beach themed houses are characterized by the color you see when you walk in. This coastal kitchen piece shown below is sure to catch every eye.
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The beaded board back panel of this furniture piece displays a pale blue. This hint of color changes the feel of the entire piece.
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The beaded board back panel of this furniture piece displays a light yellow. This hint of color spruces up this rustic furniture piece.
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The beaded board back panel of the hutch in the center of the wall is painted a beautiful blue. When put together with the other two furniture pieces, you can really see how accents are a perfect way to display colors and inspiration.

Step 4: Do it and Enjoy it.

Make your inspiration happen! After making all of the decisions, it is time to get to work. After the process is complete, sit back and look at the masterpiece and story that you have created.

Wellborn Cabinet, Inc.’s ColorInspire Program allows you to choose from the color decks of Benjamin Moore, Valspar, and Sherwin Williams. With this program, the possibilities are endless! Click here to start turning your inspirations into a colorful reality by finding a Wellborn dealer near you!

Ashley Robinson, Public Relations and Social Media Specialist

arobinson@wellborn.com

What’s Your Kitchen Style?

With so many styles of kitchens and cabinets, it can sometimes be hard to decide on a favorite. You may see kitchens in each style and agree that they are all beautiful; however, which is the style that you would choose for your own home? Aside from the look of each style, many aspects must be considered such as “does this look fit in my home?” and “is this going to get old fast?” With many considerations to sort through, it can sometimes become more of a hassle than a fun improvement on your home. Defined below are different kitchen styles to help you decide on what suits your home while fitting your personal style.

Transitional

Transitional styling pulls together the warmth of traditional with the crispness of contemporary making for a good median. This allows you to choose a simple door style, often a shaker, and pair it with a beautiful stained wood. Neutral paints are also very popular among transitional cabinetry. Wellborn Cabinet, Inc. offers two shaker door styles in the Estate Collection, Bristol and Hanover, which are both wonderful choices for transitional kitchens. With ornamental pieces at a minimum, emphasis is placed on the modest details that do exist. Maybe you like some characteristics of the traditional styling but enjoy the simplicity of contemporary. Transitional style encompasses the best of both worlds and fits the style of many homes because of its versatile traits.

The simplistic cabinet doors and mix of design details blend to create a balanced transitional kitchen. Accessories such as the stainless light and candelabra add contemporary and traditional details to the kitchen.
The simplistic cabinet doors and mix of design details blend to create a balanced transitional kitchen. Accessories such as the stainless light and candelabra add contemporary and traditional details to the kitchen.

Contemporary

Contemporary kitchens, very simple spaces, are characterized by distinctive hard and sleek horizontal lines. A full overlay slab door style is typically the norm for these kitchens. Wellborn’s Milan door style is the perfect slab selection for a contemporary kitchen. The small amount of ornamentation that does exist is natural and usually comes in some form of texture. For example, there may be horizontal wood grains to match up with the horizontal line scheme. Visually the wood grain gives off a textured appearance.

The mixture of textures and bold blocks of color are subdued by the clean design. Horizontal lines are still obvious; however, the overall design is a calm contemporary.
The mixture of textures and bold blocks of color are subdued by the clean design. Horizontal lines are still obvious; however, the overall design is a calm contemporary.

Traditional

Traditional styled kitchens are distinguished by their detail. Detail is found everywhere, unlike transitional kitchens, traditional kitchens contain embellishments, corbels and moldings on every piece of furniture. In terms of cabinetry, raised panels with applied moulding are common for traditional kitchens. Outlining these raised panels are inset or framed cabinet construction, adding a hint of detail to the cabinet doors. A fun thing about traditional is that you can mix door styles. You have the freedom to choose a couple of styles and mix them between perimeter cabinets and your island.  Techniques are a small detail that, when applied to every cabinet door, give off a striking effect. This is an attribute that can really define your own personal style. Hutch and furniture style cabinets are another unique feature of traditional kitchens.

The architectural and top to bottom details are crucial to the design of this kitchen. From the beams and archways to the mullion cabinet doors and island legs, this kitchen portrays every aspect of traditional.
The architectural and top to bottom details are crucial to the design of this kitchen. From the beams and archways to the mullion cabinet doors and island legs, this kitchen portrays every aspect of traditional.

Formal

Formal kitchens often display sophisticated, yet stunning, details in which beauty is key. Although the detail may be small, it does not go without notice and forms a timeless environment of high societal living. A vast range of cabinetry door styles can be seen in formal kitchens because the style is distinguished by the architectural elements such as coffered ceilings, columns and moulding details. Glass cabinet doors can be found in formal kitchens to add to the elegance of the environment. The arrangement of over-the-top elements and accessories is essential to creating a formal kitchen.

Formal kitchens often display a room with all of the bells and whistles. The details such as the island legs, decorative glass doors, and coffered ceiling make this kitchen a formal masterpiece.
Formal kitchens often display a room with all of the bells and whistles. The details such as the island legs, decorative glass doors, and coffered ceiling make this kitchen a formal masterpiece.

Casual

Casual kitchens maintain a comfortable feel and fit in with the home. They have the ability to be personalized and beautiful while practical at the same time. Casual is a style that can take on many looks. For instance, there can be coastal casual, country casual and eclectic casual.

Coastal Casual

Coastal casual is a look that is often found depending on the location. Beach houses often have the coastal casual style that encompasses a light and airy environment with pops of color through pastels. The atmosphere is also set through driftwood and white washes.

The combination of the bead board panel from the cabinets and wall paint color gives this casual kitchen a coastal feel. This casual design makes for a comfortable environment.
The combination of the bead board panel from the cabinets and wall paint color gives this casual kitchen a coastal feel. This casual design makes for a comfortable environment.

Country Casual

Country casual is a style that is traditionally made up of stained cabinets detailed with ornamentations and embellishments, making for a warm, inviting environment. The embellishments are placed in a comfortable manner reflecting the natural surroundings in which the home is located.

Eclectic Casual

Eclectic casual is a mix of a little bit of everything that you love with taste. It captures pieces and accessories from different places and times and combines them together in one space. Old and new design elements are pulled together to create a unique, individual style.

Whatever your style, define it and incorporate it in your home.

Ashley Robinson, Public Relations and Social Media Specialist

arobinson@wellborn.com

Bath Retreats: Make Your Bathroom a Place of Relaxation and Function

With so much of our time spent in the bathroom, it is important to give that space a little TLC like the rest of the home. Almost everyone that enters your home sees your bathroom. From changing accessories to a total bath remodel, it is important that it receives a little refreshment. A bathroom should be an oasis, and the environment that it displays directly correlates with just how relaxing it is. While this room is seen as a place of relaxation in the home, it should also be designed for function. Bathroom vanities and furniture pieces are a way to incorporate both atmosphere and storage. These are two factors that can be incorporated in any bathroom, large or small, because the key is maximizing space and creating a calm environment through décor and accessories.

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Relaxation
Whether it’s coming home from a long day at work to a nice hot bubble bath or spending your morning getting ready and preparing for the day ahead, a bathroom is a place for a little peace and quiet. It is a retreat from the outside world, even if only for a moment. The environment desired should reflect individual style while still providing a calming presence. Wellborn Cabinet, Inc.’s Elegant Bath Collection provides the perfect selection of bathroom vanities and furniture pieces for everyone’s personal style in a variety of materials and finishes. From formal to contemporary, it is easy to find beautiful cabinetry for your bathroom. As far as aesthetics, cabinetry sets the mood for the room. Bathrooms can take on a warm environment and showcase a beautifully stained Cherry furniture piece with glass doors, or they can give off a clean, cool feel with a white painted vanity. Sometimes a simple change of hardware is all a space needs to give it a fresh look. When eye pleasing pieces fill the room, it is much easier to find your haven. One common misconception is that larger space equals a better bathroom. No matter the size, the key is having a well-designed bathroom that meets all needs. The smallest designs of bathrooms often give charm to the home.

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Function
Wellborn Cabinet, Inc. has a numerous amount of storage solutions for bathrooms that maximize space including the U-Shaped drawer. Being shaped in a “U” is perfect for storage under the sink. This unique design takes into account the plumbing that is found taking up space and provides the opportunity to use the storage in the back. With a simple pull, all items become accessible. Bathrooms range in all kinds of sizes; however, it is important to know that no matter how large or small, a bathroom can incorporate relaxation and function. Storage is key in a bathroom for stowing towels, personal accessories and other items. Instead of looking at a small bathroom as lacking storage, get creative and try finding space in places you never before thought about.

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Tips for Décor
  • Get inspired. Find that something that becomes the inspiration for the entire bathroom. For example, maybe it’s a tile or even a framed picture.
  • Keep it organized. After your creative storage ideas are put to use, restore items to their original position to keep a tidy room.
  • Use open storage. When done correctly, displaying items can provide the bathroom with character. Find clear bottles to store extra shampoo and body wash and store it in a cute basket on an open shelf.
  • Invest in candles. Aromas are important aspects when it comes to giving a room a certain environment and they double as a beautiful accessory. Look for candles in different shaped containers, or make your own in jelly or mason jars.
  • Seasonal Décor. Try finding little decorations that match the style of the bathroom and can tie in a certain holiday or season. It will provide a wonderful transition from a highly decorated room and shows that you have given thought to every room of the home.
For more ideas on how to make your bath a retreat, go to www.wellborn.com.

Ashley Robinson, Public Relations and Social Media Specialist

arobinson@wellborn.com

Character In The Kitchen: Small Details That Make A Big Difference

Character in the kitchen collage

Moving into a new state, new town, and a new home meant getting a new kitchen. A kitchen that happened to be remodeled in the early 80’s on a thrifty budget. Rather than starting out with a kitchen remodel, I decided to make it my own by utilizing accessories and wedding gifts to add personal character. These are quick and simple improvements that can be applied to any room of the home.

Being someone who LOVES to cook and spend time in the kitchen, my small amount of countertop space and cabinetry really limited the excitement of my hobby. A small amount of space meant I had to be very selective on what I was going to let live on the countertops and in the cabinets. So, what are those necessities? My Kitchen-Aid mixer, recipe stand, canister set, spice rack, butcher block cutting board, knife block, and a few mason jars are, on a good day, all you will find on the counter. These are my most used items, so they really make me feel at “home” in my kitchen.

As far as cabinet space goes, I found that removing cabinet doors from wall cabinets make a kitchen feel larger and more open. This helped out more than just for looks because now my plates fit on the open shelves where before my cabinet doors would not shut. Aesthetically, my clear glasses, mason jars, and dishes add to the character of the kitchen, and that I love. This also helps in making me more organized with those items knowing that they are a large part of the visual of the kitchen.

open shelving racks

I have tried finding ways to add charm to my small haven with functionality in mind. So far, it has been a success. Only having certain items on the counter gives me an adequate amount of workspace. The shelving by the sink window houses some mason jars which are great for storing utensils and other items. They even add a unique touch to the space and are VERY convenient.

                             sink window shelving                               mason jar

These are a few small improvements that really go a long way. Next will be to throw some paint on the walls and cabinets, add new window treatments, and build a shelf to hold my cookbooks!  

Ashley Robinson, Public Relations and Social Media Specialist

arobinson@wellborn.com

Define Your Unique Style

When thinking about your dream kitchen, what type of cabinets come to mind?

Is it rich dark stained cherry wood?

Maybe it is a clean crisp white paint?

Do you picture yourself having a rustic kitchen complemented by different techniques?

You are not defined by any specific design style and have the freedom to come up with your own. To some of us, that vision may still be undiscovered. Whatever your style, here are a couple of categories to help you determine the look you imagine your kitchen to have.

Stains

Green Haven Home Kitchen Perimeter: Hanover Beaded Inset Door Style in Maple with Evergreen stain and Java glaze Island: Hanover Beaded Inset Door Style in Cherry with an Espresso stain

Sometimes all a cabinet needs is a simple stain to allow the true beauty and character of the wood to shine through. Dark, medium and light tone stains each can create a completely different look depending on what they are paired with. Your style can contain a kitchen with all stained cabinets, or an island can be the perfect place for a stain to pop out amongst a beautiful paint color.

Paints

Hoffman Media Home Kitchen

You can’t go wrong with a paint. A timeless white or neutral is something that will catch everyone’s attention for the life of the cabinetry. Tired of playing it safe? Maybe a bright bold color is what you need to craft an environment created by your own inspiration.

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Wellborn Cabinet, Inc. offers ColorInspire, a program that allows you to choose from the color decks of Benjamin Moore, Sherwin Williams and Valspar making your imagination your only limit.

Techniques

A number of techniques can be added to a cabinet to add character and a certain look. These techniques include rub through, spattering, burnishing, dry brushing, small dents, worm holes, carved edges, rasping and glazing. Each of these techniques create a unique, one of a kind look for cabinetry allowing your personality to shine.

Antique Finish Technique
Antique Finish Technique
Vintage Finish Technique
Vintage Finish Technique
Olde World Fish Technique
Olde World Finish Technique
Seaside Finish Technique
Seaside Finish Technique

Cottage, Heirloom and our Carriage Finish Technique.

Add a special touch

Aside from stains, techniques and paints, there are a number of different glazes that can be added to give detail to the cabinet design. Wellborn’s Brush Finish, a special application of Fawn glaze on top of a paint, is the perfect addition to any door style. Brush Finish is available on Glacier, Divinity, Crème and Vanilla. It gives the paint an overlay of a subtle brush stroke of glaze providing depth to the finish. This is accomplished by hand brushing each individual cabinet giving each a unique overall look.

Maybe it’s time to “Define your Unique Style.”

Ashley Robinson, Public Relations and Social Media Specialist

arobinson@wellborn.com

Design Details that Matter

When you’re planning the perfect space we all want to make sure that every detail is perfect… Right? That when someone enters your home they get it… Right?  and they can see how all the pieces fit perfectly together… Right!

I am always in awe of Southern Living Custom Builder Homes and the Southern Living Idea Homes because when I view these homes or I’m lucky enough to attend and see the homes in person it all fits  (every detail) like a glove. Just Perfect!

So enjoy some of the design details that have been spotted in one of the Southern Living Custom Builder Homes from this summer.

Builder: Dillard-Jones Builders, LLC. 

Photographer: Fred Rollison

Cabinets: www.wellborn.com 1

No singing the blues in these kitchens!

 

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Different Hues of Blue  –  the perfect “palette picks” for this kitchen design by Amie Freling www.memehill.com

A recipe of hues and neutrals mixed with metals and shapes create a transitional space that is fun and functional at the same time.

 

More Blue Inspiration from Schell Brothers and Echelon 

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What was your island designed to do?

As a designer there is no greater feeling than a homeowner using and loving their new kitchen that you helped create…  your collective vision came to life… but the worst feeling is a lovely kitchen that is not user-friendly and does not function to its fullest potential.

 

Islands can be used for so many functions in the kitchen… as stand alone activities or as the hub of the entire kitchen… Some of these activities are:

 

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prepping and clean up zones

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cooking zones

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storage… lots of storage

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eating – entertainment zones

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and other various zone combinations.

To plan your perfect island in your kitchen consider the following:

1. Space: Make sure you have enough space to properly use the island & function in your kitchen. Make sure your work zones and walkways are space sufficient.

2. Style: The island is a wonderful place to add that “pop of color”, add a different door style to create a furniture feel or that unique “design element” you have been wanting to incorporate into your home.

3. Budget: The wonderful thing about islands is that they can be very economical… a few cabinets and / or table legs and you have a wonderful work space  – eating space in one.

 

2. Make sure your designer adheres to NKBA’s Kitchen Planning Guidelines  to help you create a safe, effective and efficient space. These guidelines address space planning, appliance placement, seating and much more.

 

The Stack is Back

Over the past few years stacking cabinetry has been making a comeback…

The trend toward smaller spaces, utilizing wasted space and designing with the future in mind are some of the reasons for Cabinet Stacking.

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It’s a wonderful way to showcase your favorite items and store items you don’t utilize daily ….

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and bring much-needed accent lighting into your kitchen or other spaces….

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Seasonal items or annual decorations need no longer to go to “storage” with the assistance of organizational planning from your designer. Design your space for yearly use and not just for the season that you are in while the designing, building or remodeling is occurring.

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It’s also a perfect way to add personality to your space!

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