Long Island Home Remodeling Trends. Although kitchens and bathrooms represent the majority of what we do at Kitchen Designs by Ken Kelly, clients often ask us to do other projects either simultaneously or at a later date. Regardless of budget, our clients (including high-end, grand scale luxury projects), are basing renovation decisions on practical solutions that encourage household efficiency with GOOD DESIGN. Over the last two years, clients in Nassau and Suffolk Counties (and some in Manhattan) have been asking for one or more of the following when remodeling:
- Larger kitchens for entertaining that integrate with family space
- Downsizing kitchens … without giving up amenities
- Increased energy efficiency
- Outdoor living environments
- Home offices
- Storage in every room including the garage and basement
- Laundry rooms
- Spa-style bath amenities
- Overall good design
Although I have an enormous photo library of our work, I wish I could share all of our projects with you. However, some of our high-profile clients request that we keep their projects private, which we respect, so I did my best to describe them here. Almost all the photos below are our own projects. If I used others to illustrate an example, those photos are credited to the original designer with a link back to their site.
1. Larger kitchens for entertaining that integrate with family space. For several jobs we did this year, not only is the kitchen larger, but it seamlessly integrates with family and entertaining space — den, dining area, etc. Some kitchens also transition beautifully to the outdoor living space for a full indoor/outdoor experience. Most of the designs were not “out and out” great rooms like we did in the past with one gigantic space that housed all these rooms. Instead, we widened doorways, opened up walls either fully or partially, and incorporated walls of glass that open to the outdoor patios and gardens. The result is a warmer space that we flooded with many forms of light — especially natural light. This new “great room” style creates intimacy yet can accommodate large crowds as well.
2. Downsizing kitchens. In the past year, we have had a number of clients who are downsizing from their large residences to a smaller, more manageable size. They had grown use to all the amenities and benefits of their large kitchen and don’t want to give up those features in their new smaller space. Our challenge is to balance those conveniences within their new smaller space.
3. Increased energy efficiency. Clients are interested in energy efficiency and environmental stewardship. There is a surging interest in sustainable design. Clients are seeking appliances, products, and materials that are long-lasting, low maintenance, and energy efficient.
4. Storage efficiency in every room including the garage and basement. Good design and aesthetics are key when we design cabinetry for other rooms in the home. It gives us tremendous satisfaction when clients equally come in raving about these added spaces and how much “good design” changed their lives. Well designed storage space with appropriate interior components should align with the architectural integrity of the home AND match the needs and individuality of each client.
5. Outdoor living environments/outdoor kitchens. Honestly, we didn’t expect this to be as big as it was this year. Many clients have expanded their living space by capturing outdoor areas, either in the form of an outdoor living room or outdoor kitchen. Sometimes even the simplest additions like adding an outdoor pizza oven, new barbecue, or flower-filled planter urns can be life enhancing.
6. Home offices. Home offices are a very popular request as many Long Island and New York City clients work either part-time or exclusively from their homes. In most instances the home office is a dedicated room. For others that can’t spare a room, we have added office space along an unused wall or in a corner of a den.
7. Laundry rooms. Laundry rooms are coming out of the basements and the closets and are a new breed of design focus at our firm. People are tired of doing this mundane daily task in an uninspiring environment. Many clients have fun decorating and taking more liberties with this space. We have also designed laundry rooms that incorporate sinks/showers for dog grooming, craft storage, and sewing space.
8. Mudrooms. Mudrooms just make perfect sense if you have the space. They provide adequate closet space and appropriate storage for daily incidentals that truly keep the rest of the house clutter free. (See The Secret to a Great Kitchen is a Great Mudroom post.)
9. Spa-style bath amenities. We are transforming bathrooms, especially master baths, into relaxing oasis’s that the men enjoy equally as much as the women. Spa-style whirlpool baths and shower towers with pulsating jets provide relief for the back and soothing relaxation. Elements such as radiant heat flooring, chromotherapy, and mood lighting enhance a good design. The good news is the room doesn’t have to be enormous to include some of these features.
10. Overall Good Design. If you are shopping or are in the planning stages, don’t underestimate this crucial element. GOOD DESIGN is EVERYTHING! We have seen plenty of people make a substantial investment in their kitchen, bath, or home renovation and then hate the result because the design doesn’t work. This is especially disheartening when clients do their product homework, choose high quality cabinetry and materials, and wind up with a design so inefficient that they end up disappointed with their space. You deserve the very best for your investment, and that’s why you need advice from an expert designer. Design is at the core of our business and has set us apart for 30+ years. In addition, a good designer will help drive cost savings and keep you on budget.
As I said before in this post about budgeting, “It is important to consider that if you have a strict budget, you will absolutely get more value within that budget working with a professional designer. You will get a higher quality product, a better design, and more options and features. We will give you much more for that same budget, and because we’re experts at what we do, we don’t go over that number. We are often shocked to hear that people are afraid to talk to us because they think we are expensive. Yes, we do very high-end custom cabinetry for those that have that kind of budget; however, most people don’t realize that our specialty and expertise truly help those on a smaller budget, and we love to do these jobs as well. It gives us even more opportunity to be creative. We want you to get the job done right. It gives us tremendous pleasure knowing we gave you the highest quality possible for your investment.” If you bring your wish list to us by stopping by or making an appointment at either of our showrooms, we will give you a free consultation and ball-park price. (See our post Five Tips to Get the Most Mileage from your Free Design Consultation)