Archive for May, 2013

A Well-Lit Home: Lighting Options & Trends for Your Space – Part 1

Wednesday, May 29th, 2013

Lighting is an amazing tool that can change the look and feel of your home. Dining Room Pendant LightsWhether you want to add ambiance, comfort, versatility, or practicality to a room, lighting is your go-to source.

Most rooms serve more than one purpose.  As you contemplate the lighting for a room it’s best to consider what activities you’re going to use that space for.  This will influence your choice of lighting fixtures and their placement.

Having a strong grasp on different lighting styles can open up a new world of options for your home and make the shopping and design process that much simpler.  Here are some light fixture options and styles that you will likely run across as you consider lighting for your new home or home remodel:

Flush Mounted Ceiling Lights – Illuminating a room directly from the ceiling provides a good overall spread of light.  A flush mounted ceiling light is usually a single fixture that holds one to four bulbs, sometimes in combination with a ceiling fan.  Available in endless styles, often featuring a glass bowl or a shade, an interesting ceiling light can add style to a room.  Flush mounted ceiling lights are especially good for bedrooms or hallways; in other rooms, they will likely need to be accented with additional lighting to provide enough light for the whole room.

Track Lighting – Moveable lights that run along a track, track lighting is multi-purpose and now stylish too. The ability to move light fixtures can help you adapt a room for its many uses – say cooking one minute, doing homework at the kitchen island the next.  Track light spotlights are also beneficial for streaming light on bookcases, artwork, or a fireplace mantel.

Pendant Lights –These low-hanging light fixtures cast “pools” of light, making them great for tasks or ambiance.  Often made in eye-catching designs, pendants can bring style and character to a room – traditional or modern.  Grouping multiple mini pendants together is especially on-trend right now, hung over a kitchen island or bar area. These pendant lighting ideas from Better Homes & Gardens are sure to spark some ideas.

Under Cabinet Lights – Often forgotten or deemed unnecessary, under cabinet lights can be highly impacting in a kitchen or bathroom.  Whether they draw attention to that well-designed backsplash or provide extra light while chopping vegetables, under cabinet are both beneficial and beautiful, adding a reflective glow throughout the room.

Now that your light bulb of ideas has clicked on, want to learn more?  Check out this fun photo tutorial from hgtv that will clue you in on the differences between ambient, task, and accent lighting, and then stop by next week for part 2 of this article, featuring four more lighting types!

Ready to remodel your home and create a beautiful, well-lit space?  Contact us here at Sass Construction today!  Creating beautiful spaces in Chanhassen, Chaska, the West Metro, and throughout the Twin Cities!

Summertime at Sass Construction! – What We Love to Do

Thursday, May 23rd, 2013

Summer is almost upon us!  summertime leavesHere at Sass Construction we work hard, but we love to play to, especially when it comes to being outdoors over our beautiful Minnesota summers.  Here are some fun insights from the Sass Construction gang on what we like to do in the summertime!

Mark enjoys driving his classic cars but mostly spending time and mingling at a car club he belongs to.  Not only spending time with his friends, he likes to restore cars and classic tractors. Now with a granddaughter, Mark enjoys traveling to visit his family and visiting his other life in Alaska.

During the summer time, Ivan likes camping, biking, motorcycling and deaf socializing.

“We love to take boat cruises on Lake Minnetonka from Excelsior or on the Mississippi River from Stillwater with family or friends.  Enjoy baseball games – grandkids and/or the Twins!”

“I like to sit in the rocker on the front porch enjoying the view in our front yard of the pond with Mark and also with my best friend Mary.  Many great conversations on the porch.  Taking early morning walks with Ozzy, our dog.  Also, look forward to my Dad’s huge family reunion every year in July.”

Jamie enjoys being outdoors with his family.  And this means anything, as long as it’s out of the house.  Spending time around the fire pit, playing games, camping, etc.

“When I get a chance I love to fish camp and spend time with my wife and kids…  what more could you ask for.  Life is what you make it and life is good.”

“Back in Colorado I loved to mountain climb, and enjoyed mountain biking and boating on our little lakes.  But I’m excited to explore Stillwater and Hudson this summer!  Most of all, no matter where I may be in this world, I enjoy spending time outside with my dog Bella.”


We love helping people create new spaces in their homes and businesses too!  Need help with your remodeling or construction job?  Get in touch today.  And don’t forget to spend some time outside while you’re at it!

The 70s Are Back! – Retro Renovations & Vintage Home Style Tips

Thursday, May 16th, 2013

Retro-inspired renovations are taking the design world by storm.  Retro Pattern - 70s style WallpaperWant to incorporate some groovy touches into your home’s design?  Try adding one of these elements or combine them all for a 70s-inspired look with a modern spin:

Darker Woods – Contemporary turns have taken us the direction of light wood, white woodwork, and airy style, but dark wood, well known in the 70s, is making a comeback.  The trick to keeping it modern and avoiding the gloom-effect?  Mix it with bright accents, don’t go overboard, and use it in a room with lots of light (natural or otherwise).  Check out these fresh ways that dark wood paneling is mixed with lighter tones to provide sophisticated contrast with some underline groove.

Flat Panel Cabinets – Flat Panel Cabinets are most often associated with sleek, modern style, but really they picked up steam during the 70s.  Once considered boring and non-dimensional, flat panel cabinets used with nice finishes, wood textures, or striking handles come off as polished rather than bland.  Peak here for some great tips from Houzz on selecting hardware that will really make your flat panel cabinets come to life.

Geometric Shapes – From shirts to walls to sofas, the 70s saw no shortage of geometric patterns and shapes scattered throughout.  Accenting with big, bold patterns can be a great way to add some fun style to your otherwise modern home.  Furniture with geometric angles is also back, like square-back chairs and mod sofas.  This company is known for their all-things-retro furniture and accents if you need help finding the perfect piece.

Pops of Color – Hard not to love, pops of bright colors make any room more exciting and welcoming.  The 70s was known especially for bright orange tones (super trendy right now), hot pinks, intense blues, and slightly muted greens and yellows.  Click here to see some fun photos of rooms that have taken color pops to a very groovy level.

Textured Walls & Wallpaper – Because nothing about style in the 70s was simple, walls couldn’t be either.  The more texture and pattern the better.  Using modern but 70s inspired wall papers in moderation (say one wall) can be a fabulous way to add pizzazz to a room without going overboard.  Check out some vintage inspired wallpaper patterns spotlighted by hgtv here.

What’s stopping you?  Find one item you love and start from there!  Mixing up single items in your home is a great way to keep up to date with trends and keep your spirits up too — though we won’t stop you if you want to go full force ahead with a complete retro renovation!

Sass Construction is a remodeling and building company serving the Twin Cities MN, including Chanhassen and the West Metro area.  Ready for a renovation of any kind?  Contact us today!

Create the Perfect Outdoor Kitchen & Entertaining Space

Tuesday, May 7th, 2013

Now that beautiful weather has arrived here in Minnesota, we are anxious to get outdoors — and stay there!  Beautiful Outdoor Kitchen & PatioWhat better way to enjoy the weather than by bringing your kitchen outdoors for the summer!  From simple to luxurious, here are some fun ways to create a cooking, dining, and entertaining area right in your own backyard.

The Grill – Whether you prefer the old school charcoal method or the latest and greatest in gas grills, selecting a grill for your space is absolutely necessary to preparing and enjoying meals outdoors.  If you’re space is smaller, consider adding a rolling cart or tall table nearby your freestanding grill to help with preparation space.  If you’re looking to add a more elaborate backyard kitchen, then including a large built in grill along with stonework and a countertop area are a must.  For true outdoor kitchen inspiration, look to Better Homes & Gardens here.

Outdoor Fireplaces – Not just for keeping warm, outdoor fireplaces and fire pits can add entertaining ambiance, give off evening light, or just provide a place for roasting marshmallows.  If you’re building an outdoor kitchen, include one in the countertop arrangement to add height and variety to your luxury look.  If you’re keeping things simple, purchase a small portable fire pit and surround it with inviting seating.  For some beautiful ideas peak at these hgtv photos & these from BH&G.

Phantom Screens  – Do you have a covered patio area off your house that extends into or includes your outdoor eating area?  A phantom screen can be a great accent to your space.  Designed to keep insects at bay, provide shade from directly sunlight glare, and enhance your patio privacy, these motorized screens are simple to use, providing benefits without blocking your outdoor view!

Heaters  -  No need to take the conversation inside on a relaxing evening just because the temperature drops a bit.  Keep the outdoor ambiance strong and stay cozy at the same time with a portable outdoor heater.  Heaters are also fabulous accents to poolside setups for guests who are damp and need some extra help warming up.   Not sure what type of heater to get?  Read more here from the experts at hgtv.

Bar Area – Classy and practical, an outdoor bar area means less running in and out of the house as guests need beverages.  Affordable and decorative, you may want to use a simple rolling cart with drinks and glasses that you can maintain and restock each time you entertain outdoors.  If a more elaborate bar is in your plans, you can either purchase an outdoor bar as a freestanding furniture piece, or build one into your luxury countertop cooking space.  Houzz offers no shortage of outdoor bar ideas shown here.

Seating & Décor – Don’t forget to make your space visually appealing and comfortable as well.  Make sure you have lots of cozy seating, and consider benches for fitting multiple guests in a smaller space.  Add outdoor pillows as accents, and pots and vases in bright colors – and don’t forget freshly cut flowers from the garden!  For more ideas on stylish touches for your space look to the inspiration of BH&G here.

Wishing you a beautiful season of cooking and entertaining while the weather is at it’s best!

Ready to add a patio, deck, or some outdoor brickwork?  Need help with your outdoor kitchen construction plans?  Connect with us here at Sass Construction for Twin Cities / West Metro / Chanhassen remodeling and building help today!