Archive for January, 2014

The Top 8 Kitchen Design Trends for 2014

Tuesday, January 21st, 2014

The kitchen is the heart of the home — the room where people gather to cook, enjoy good food, and spend time together. It’s no wonder that the kitchen design trends of 2014 seek to help us create warm, inviting, creative spaces.

In 2014 kitchen design will continue featuring some of what we saw last year (like open concept kitchens), but its exciting to look ahead at what’s new. And perhaps most importantly, to dream about how these trends will look in YOUR kitchen! Let’s take a look…

1. Go Gray
While white remains most common, gray has been steadily increasing in popularity and this year will be the preferred color choice for kitchen walls, even cabinets. Soothing, and reminiscent of stone, gray plays well with some of the other kitchen trends of 2014 — such as using raw materials and picking warmer tones for hardware and lighting fixtures – so read on!

2. Dark for Drama
If gray sounds too safe, too soothing, perhaps you’d like something a little more dramatic? Think about painting one wall — or your ceiling or floor — in a dark brown, deep red, copper color, or even black. This trend in darker paint tones will have your kitchen feeling dramatic and warm, with just the right amount of flair!

3. Black Countertops, in Quartz, please!
Believe it or not, designers predict countertops will be back in black in 2014. Pairing a black countertop with lighter colored walls and cabinets creates a stylish contrast to the all-white kitchens we’re used to (tired of?) seeing. And while you’re at it, order that black countertop in quartz! It feels and looks like granite, but quartz is more durable, less likely to chip or crack, and has a non-porous surface that is easy to clean and harder to stain. After years of competition, quartz is starting to surpass the ever-popular granite and is among the granite alternatives trending for 2014.

4. Warm Up Your Hardware
Tired of the emphasis on cold silvery metallic hardware like chrome, nickel and stainless steel? This year feel a wave of sweet relief and look for warmer metal finish choices like brass, aged gold, iron or graphite hardware. These tones are even making their way into hood finishes, and can be coordinated with lighting fixtures as well.

5. Camouflaged Appliances
The trend for open plan kitchens continues to grow. So much so that we now have appliance designers dreaming up appliances that beautifully blend into the kitchen. Picture a false front for your refrigerator, dishwasher, or microwave drawers, meant to blend with the surrounding walls or cabinets.

6. Raw Beauty
Start checking out exposed brick walls, concrete countertops and floors, sliding barn doors, reclaimed wood shelving, and exposed beams — because using raw, natural materials couldn’t be trendier this year. Even in new construction, natural elements can be achieved with the use of some amazing veneers now on the market. The rustic vibe adds a lot of character and warmth, while remaining calm and industrial. Done right, this look is hip, trendy, and really beautiful.

7. Dishes (Still) on Display
Whether you install open shelves or glass-front cabinets, you’ll be on trend for 2014. Putting your carefully curated collection of dishes on display is a trend beyond farmhouse or modern design, it is officially popular for all styles of kitchens. From the fun of seeing your favorite mugs greet you in the morning, to the light that bounces off your glassware, to the ease of reaching for a salad bowl, there are just so many reasons to consider jumping on this train.

8. Non-Traditional Lighting
Bottom line for this one: think outside the box. Especially with the increase in open shelving, under-cabinet task lighting does not have to be your default. Consider sconces, lamps with a swing arm, and other decorative task lights that allow you to add personality to your space. And remember to put those warm finishes – like aged gold, iron, and brass – to good use!

Want to read more? Check out this report from Zillow Digs.

Sass Construction is available to make over your kitchen or any room in your home! Contact us about your interior or exterior remodeling needs.  We are a full-service remodeling company serving Eden Prairie, Chanhassen, Excelsior, the West Metro, and the Twin Cities MN area.




Doors: Your Material Options for Style & Efficiency

Wednesday, January 8th, 2014

There are many styles of doors to choose from, but beyond how you’d like your door to look, you’ll also need to choose what kind of door to install.

Most door construction combines several materials, such as a fiberglass or steel door having a wood frame. Deciding which surface material to use impacts the strength, appearance, longevity and cost.

Let’s take a look at the surface materials available and how each impacts your home, your lifestyle, and your budget.

The most common style, wood doors range from high-end solid wood doors to low-cost versions made from wood-veneer surrounding an engineered-wood core. Their versatility and beauty are what set wood doors apart. From oak to cherry to walnut to pine (just to name a few!) wood doors may feature a natural finish or can be painted. Wood doors do require maintenance, but can always be sanded down for refinishing should the need arise.

When security and durability are your main concerns, steel doors an excellent choice. Not only are steel doors stronger than wood or fiberglass, but they aren’t easily damaged by wear-and-tear or weather. If steel doors do acquire dents or dings, they are easily repaired with an auto-body repair kit. Steel doors are typically less expensive and come in a wide variety or styles and colors.

Tip: There is a large range in the quality and price of steel doors. Just remember that the lower the gauge number, the thicker the steel. And yes, thicker is better.

Fiberglass-composite doors are maintenance-free, and their durability makes them a great choice for harsh or humid climates. These doors imitate the look of wood-grain and can be stained to look like oak, cherry and many other wood varieties.

Tip: Keep in mind that the wood grain on a quality fiberglass-composite door will run horizontally across the “rails” and vertically down the “stiles” to mimic a real wood door. 

Sold only through dealers, aluminum doors are custom-built for each installation, and are available in many styles and colors, with either a smooth or wood-grain surface. The baked enamel finish never requires painting, will not rust, and often comes with a 20-year warranty. Of course, all of these amazing features means aluminum doors are nearly as expensive as solid wood.

The range of material options means you really can find the doors to meet your project needs, all while accounting for energy efficiency and budget considerations! Remember, material choice alone is not enough to discern the quality of the doors you want to install. Be sure to pay attention to the hardware and function: doors should function easily and feel good to use.

Once you’ve selected the right doors for your home, be sure installation goes smoothly and correctly! Improper installation may not only cause damage to your brand-new doors, in some cases it will also void your warranty. Let the experts at Sass Construction help with your door installations and put your mind as ease.

For more details on the material options for your next door, check out this article from This Old House.

Contact Sass Construction about your interior or exterior remodeling needs, including installing new windows and doors. We are a full-service remodeling company serving Eden Prairie, Chanhassen, Chaska, the West Metro, Minneapolis, and the Twin Cities MN area.