french door wall oven

Save Space with a French Door Wall Oven

french door wall ovenWhen it comes to designing kitchens, creating a safe, congestion free environment is always one of our top priorities. One of the most troublesome spots we address is the area around the oven–particularly when the oven door is open.

Traditional oven doors open from the top and extend about 20″ into the kitchen floor space on average. These drop-style doors force cooks to navigate around, and bend over, hot oven doors to get items in and out. Whilst the cook is tending to the oven, foot traffic in the immediate vicinity comes to a halt. To avoid this sort of congestion, we endeavor to place this style of appliance strategically. Because the oven needs to be located within easy proximity to the refrigerator, as well as the sink, this can create challenges and design limitations–especially in smaller spaces. Fortunately, appliance manufacturers have recently begun offering ovens with French doors which open in the middle.

When open, French doors take up significantly less floor space making them much easier for home chefs to maneuver around. In addition to their space saving benefits, French door wall ovens are easier on the back. Cooks can easily place and remove large sheets or roasting pans without awkwardly bending over a hot oven door. French doors are also easily opened and closed with one hand. In short, French door wall ovens provide home chefs with a safer, more convenient meal preparation experience.

We incorporated the GE Café Series 30” Built-in French-Door Single Convection wall oven (pictured here) in a project we recently completed for homeowners in Plymouth Meeting, PA. Follow this link to view the project photos. If you are curious to learn if a French door wall oven would be the right solution for your kitchen, give us a call at 610-584-0665. One of our designers will be happy to answer any questions you may have.

kitchen lighting

3 Lighting Tips For Your Next Remodeling Project

kitchen lightingLighting is a critically important aspect of every remodeling project. Whenever we advise our clients about lighting, we address three primary areas of need: Functionality, Style, and Control. If you are planning a remodeling project, here are a few home lighting tips for you to consider.

1. Address Functionality First

Before we begin selecting fixtures, we consider first how the homeowner will use that space, and then we work with them to select the best lighting options for that area. From task lighting around work areas, to accent lighting for accentuating artwork, there are a wide variety of lighting options available.

The quantity and mix of fixtures necessary to light any area will vary depending on the size and dimensions of the space. Using a light layering approach, we strive to achieve the optimal lighting solution based on each client’s needs and budget.

2. Make a Style Statement

More than just providing illumination, lighting can help homeowners express their individual style and taste. Clients often select decorative pendant fixtures over their tables, peninsulas, and islands to add personality to a room. Pendants can be in line, staggered, or larger in scale. Large or small, there are numerous options for every taste ranging from vintage or reproductions, to industrial, sleek and contemporary, transitional, traditional, eclectic, the list goes on.

3. Gain Control

Finally, when working with clients on their lighting, we always consider how they want to control the light in the space. Do the lights need to be dimmable? How frequently will these lights be used? What are the energy efficiency goals? Do the homeowners want to be able to control the lights remotely? Recent innovations in technology have made it easier than ever for clients to control both interior and exterior lights whether they are away on vacation, or simply seated in another room.

Still Need More Ideas and Inspiration?

Looking through photos on Houzz is a wonderful way to gather ideas and inspiration for any remodeling project. To assist with your lighting planning, browse through this Houzz Ideabook I created.

If you have questions about an upcoming project, please feel free to contact me with your design questions. I can be reached at the office line at: (610) 584-0665.

7 Tips for a Happier Home

Feeling good and looking good go hand-in-hand. Nowhere is this more true than in our homes. When we improve our living environment, it has a major impact on how we feel when we are in our homes. Here are a few tips to get you feeling good about your home again.

1. Clear the Clutter

Don’t try to do the whole house at one time, just start with a well-trafficked room you have been wanting to get in shape. Set your timer for 15 minutes and go. Once you feel the glow of accomplishment, you’ll be motivated to tackle another room and then another. Think about how you want each room to function and make sure the things you need for those activities are at hand. Get rid of every item that’s unrelated.

2. Get Inspired

Check out websites like Houzz to see what professional designers are doing and get your own creative juices flowing. You might also consider signing up for a workshop or seminar that offers remodeling tips. Books stores also offer a variety of home improvement books and magazines.

3. Liven Your Lighting

Lighting can make all the difference in how you experience a room. Count the light sources in each room. You’ll want to have three or more per room. Add light dimmers for your overhead lighting. You’ll be amazed at how dramatically this changes the feel of the room.

4. Color Me Wonderful

Touches of color will add pizazz to any room. You don’t have to go color crazy, but a fun touch added here and there will brighten your space and add enjoyment.

5. Choose Quality Over Quantity

Whether you’re purchasing furniture, window treatments, or remodeling, get the best you can afford–even if it means you buy a little less. It’s better to get a little less of what you really want than a lot of something that you’ll be unhappy with in a few months.

6. Maintain Your Home and Your Sanity

Nagging maintenance projects can add unwelcome daily stress. Before they become bigger problems, be sure to schedule your home maintenance projects. There’s no need to do them all on the same day. Whether you will do-it-yourself, or hire a handyman, stagger the projects into reasonable segments over time. Pretty soon your entire home will be ship-shape and you can schedule time for guilt-free relaxation.

7. Explore remodeling

If remodeling your home is an idea you’d like to explore, we’d be delighted to help. Schedule a visit to our selection studio for ideas on custom cabinetry, countertops, tile, paint colors and more. When you’re ready to talk specifics, call and set up a free in-home consultation with Mike Foering. It’s a good way to find out what is feasible for your home and budget.

Custom Craft Contractors has been making remodeling dreams come true since 1982. We would love to help bring your remodeling dreams to life, as well. Give us a call at 610-584-0665 to take the first step toward a happier, more functional home.

Many thanks to C & R Remodeling for providing the inspiration for this article.