Tips for Designing the Perfect Kitchen Island

islandPhoto: MGS by Design

Whether building a new house or remodeling an existing space, a kitchen island is a must-have design feature that can transform how you use and enjoy the busiest room in your home.  At the very least an island adds storage and counter space, creating a centering point between the different appliances and areas in your kitchen.  Beyond that, a great island creates a gathering spot where families can congregate and create amazing memories.

Start with Size

How big do you want your kitchen island to be? This depends on a lot of variables. How much space do you have to work with? And what is going to be the main purpose of your island? Will you use it as additional cooking and prep space, or will it function primarily as seating? Equally important to the size of your island is the amount of space around it. You always want to make sure there is enough room around the island so as not to impede the flow of traffic through your home or limit the ability of the cook to move around easily and efficiently.

An island this size can fit easily into a smaller kitchen.
smallislandhgtvPhoto: HGTV
A bigger island can really help define the space in a large open kitchen.14032810_321469251530534_1325135376_nPhoto: Caitlin Creer Interiors

Seating

Having seating at your kitchen island is a huge way to increase the functionality of your kitchen island. There are multiple ways to design your island to maximize seating capability. You can use a multi level island which will separate the seating area and work/prep space. You can use your island as a base for a banquette seating area. A table space can easily be incorporated into one end of an island or you can leave a counter overhang with enough room to move push chairs under when not in use.

This island creates a ton of seating for family and friends.fec91a7001fbPhoto: Kelly Deck Design
 A classic example of a multi level island.RS_heather-guss-rustic-neutral-kitchen_4x3.jpg.rend.hgtvcom.1280.960Photo: Heather Guss
Banquette seating is a wonderful option if your space allows it.03-kitchen-island-with-a-built-in-seating-areaPhoto: DigsDigs.com
Integrating a table space is a great way to utilize one end of a large island.tableincorporated            Photo: Kelly Deck Designs

Storage

Options are almost limitless for storage in your kitchen island. Any combination of drawers, cabinets and shelves give you the ability to really customize the island to your specific storage needs. With that in mind, its a good idea to think about what you want to store in your island. Everyday items need to be easily accessible. Small appliances and larger pots may require extra depth or height.

Drawers and cabinets with pull out shelving maximize storage potential in a medium-sized island.
10-classic-kitchen-island-with-tableware-storagedigsdigsPhoto: Digsdigs.com
Your kitchen island is the perfect place to store and display cookbooks.decorative-cookbook-holder-home-interior-design-transitional-kitchen-london-718x538.jpgPhoto: decorology
A mix of open and closed storage is the perfect way to showcase collectibles while concealing more utilitarian items.Kitchen-island-pots-storagePhoto: Homedit

When it comes to your kitchen island,  Prestige Marble & Granite is here to help you with a vast selection of unique, exotic and rare natural stones from around the world. Our knowledgeable staff will guide you through selection, layout, design and installation. We welcome homeowners, designers, and contractors to browse our showroom any time!

Timeless Decorating Tips from America’s First Interior Designer

thehouseingoodtaste

Trends come and go, but there are some tenets in decorating that will always stand the test of time. Elsie de Wolfe, America’s first interior designer who was often referred to as the “First Lady of Interior Design,” was a revolutionary and trendsetter and the first to promote a design concept that revolved around a lifestyle.

Her decorating  book, The House in Good Taste (1913), has influenced generations of designers and her impact on style, elegance, and the art of living remain an important influence even today.

The key elements of de Wolfe’s style are as sensible and fresh as ever. These tips from her book are as pertinent today as they were a century ago:

1. Painted Walls

“To me, the most beautiful wall is the plain and dignified painted wall, broken into graceful panels by the use of narrow moldings, with lighting fixtures carefully placed, and every picture and mirror hung with classic precision. This wall is just as appropriate to the six-room cottage as to the twenty-room house. If I could always find perfect walls, I’d always paint them, and never use a yard of paper. Painted walls, when very well done, are dignified and restful, and most sanitary.”

2. The Use of Color

“What a joyous thing is color! How influenced we all are by it, even if we are unconscious of how our sense of restfulness has been brought about. Certain colors are antagonistic to each of us, and I think we should try to learn just what colors are most sympathetic to our own individual emotions, and then make the best of them.”

3. Curtains

“How often do we see masses of draperies looped back and arranged with elaborate dust-catching tassels and fringes that mean nothing. These curtains do not even draw!…
A window is such a gay, animate thing. By day it should be full of sunshine, and if it frames a view worth seeing, the view should be a part of it. By night the window should be hidden by soft curtains that have been drawn to the side during the sunshiny hours.”

4. The Living Room

“Listen a minute while I tell you how I see such a room: Big and restful, making for comfort first and always; a little shabby here and there, perhaps, but all the more satisfactory for that—like an old shoe that goes on easily. Lots of light by night, and not too much drapery to shut out the sunlight by day. Big, welcoming chairs, rather sprawly, and long sofas.”

5. The Dining Room

“In most other rooms we avoid the “pairing” of things, but here pairs and sets of things are most desirable. Two console tables are more impressive than one. There is great decorative value in a pair of mirrors, a pair of candlesticks, a pair of porcelain jars, two cupboards flanking a chimney-piece. You would not be guilty of a pair of wall fountains, or of two wall clocks, just as you would not have two copies of the same portrait in a room. But when things “pair” logically, pair them! They will furnish a backbone of precision to the room.”

 

Make a Splash in the New Year by Giving Your Bathroom a Makeover

The bathroom is the space where most of us start and end our days. It’s also the most private room in the house and the place to relax and get away from the stress and pressures of work and every day life. While it may seem that the bathroom is not the most fashionable space in your home, doesn’t this make it one of the most important rooms in the house? Why not turn your bathing space into a place of style and beauty with these five brilliant bathroom design trends.

Smart Storage Solutions

A beautiful bathroom is an organized bathroom. Life is hectic enough without wasting time looking for your bathroom essentials. Cabinetry manufacturers are now offering many clever options for keeping everything you need organized and close at hand. Even the tried and true medicine cabinet is now becoming the command center for organization, with many new models featuring built in electrical and USB ports, TVs, and even refrigeration for your gels and creams (or your wine!)

Montclair Cabin

Natural Materials

This year will be marked by a emphasis on organic and natural elements when it comes to a bathroom design. Natural materials will not only add character and warmth to your room, but they’ll also help to soften the sleek lines of modern toilets, tubs, and sinks. Materials like wood and naturals tone will add organic coziness to clean colors and simple lines.

Oaks Residence

Floating Vanities

While floating vanities have been popular in Europe for some time now, they are just becoming trendy in the US. The floating vanity creates a sense of space and openness (great for small bathrooms), but they have practical advantages as well. They can be installed at almost about any height, which is great if you find  standard height vanities either too tall or too short. Also, the open area underneath makes for easy cleaning. The look is great for both traditional or modern designs.

Little Compton

Metallics

The metallics trend, which has been strong in other areas of the home, has finally made its way into the bathroom, with copper, brass, and rose gold making a big splash in bathroom design. Look out for faucets, mirror frames and towel bars in these soft metal tones that will add warmth to even the most contemporary design scheme.

Hamilton Terrace

Wet Rooms

This hot new trend includes a shower space and freestanding tub in their own glass enclosure separate from the sink and toilet areas. Opting for a complete wetroom will give your bathroom a glamorous, spa-like feel, but it’s important to work with professional designers and architects on a project of this scope.

When it comes to adding organic elements to your design, Prestige Marble & Granite is here to help you with a vast selection of unique, exotic and rare natural stones from around the world. Our knowledgeable staff will guide you through selection, layout, design and installation. We welcome homeowners, designers, and contractors to browse our showroom any time!

Kitchen Design Trends in 2017

Kitchens, along with master bathrooms, continue to be the most desired areas for home improvement projects. With the current low interest rates and increased property values, most consumers believe kitchen and bath renovations offer a good return on investment. While we believe that any remodel should reflect the style of architecture and location of the home, as well as personal tastes and lifestyle, each years brings new design trends which might be worth considering. Let’s take a look at what’s in store for kitchens in 2017.

Is Gray the New White?

While white cabinets continue to be tops, gray is closing in and could be the top kitchen kitchen color in 2017. And combining cabinet colors is a trendy look that’s holding strong.

Gray kitchen
These gray cabinets are painted in Grey Owl by Benjamin Moore.
Gray and white cabinet combination with marble countertops.
Gray and white cabinet combination with marble countertops.

Sinks in New Hues

A colorful sink is a great way to pop in a small amount of color in a neutral kitchen or make it more of a focal point by using the same hue in the backsplash.
Elkay Sinks and Faucets

Architectural Lines

On the faucet front in 2017, keep things clean and minimal by choosing a linear silhouette. The architectural aesthetic will instantly update your look and works  with a wide range of styles.

Kohler K-7547-4 Purist Double Handle Bridge Kitchen Faucet with Rotating Spout
Kohler Purist Double Handle Bridge Kitchen Faucet

Bold Light Fixtures

Oversize light fixtures lend a great sense of depth perception and can be used to create drama in a room with a low ceiling.

Kitchens

Marble Mania

This classic countertop material took a backseat to granite and quartz because it is more vulnerable to staining, chipping and fading. But designers and homeowners are drawn by marble’s rich natural tones and timeless style and are returning to the material. (Find out more about what to expect with marble in the kitchen here.)

Calacatta Gold
Calacatta Gold Marble  – by Prestige Marble & Granite

Waterfalls

A growing desire for contemporary lines accounts for the popularity of waterfall countertops, as homeowners are opting for cleaner cabinet styles, simpler doors and less molding.

Waterfall countertop
Waterfall countertop in marble.

Patterned Tile

Funky patterned tiles might be taking the place of subway tiles in 2017.

Kipling Residence
When it comes to your countertops, Prestige Marble & Granite is here to help you with a vast selection of unique, exotic and rare natural stones from around the world. Our knowledgeable staff will guide you through selection, layout, design and installation. We welcome homeowners, designers, and contractors to browse our showroom any time!

Hue News: Pantone’s 2017 Color of the Year is Greenery!

pantone-color-of-the-year-2017-greenery

Color forecasters at the Pantone Color Institute have declared “Greenery” as next year’s color of the year. Pantone explains that the vibrant yellow-green hue  is symbolic of new beginnings:

Greenery is a fresh and zesty yellow-green shade that evokes the first days of spring when nature’s greens revive, restore and renew. Illustrative of flourishing foliage and the lushness of the great outdoors, the fortifying attributes of Greenery signals consumers to take a deep breath, oxygenate and reinvigorate.

Pantone, owned by Washington, D.C.-based Danaher Corp., has a system that helps manufacturers define color precisely. The Pantone Color Institute provides color trend forecasting, brand color development supported by brand color stories, and product palette development.

Every year, Pantone’s team around the world spends a good chunk of the year studying trends in fashion, consumer products, social media and technology. It looks for influences that best describe the current mood of society and picks a color to reflect those elements. Pantone tips off some marketing partners in advance, so consumers will soon see a variety of products, such as Sephora cosmetics, KitchenAid stand mixers, Keurig coffee makers, and even cars, in the new hue.

pantone-skoda-green

 

Greenery is a versatile “trans-seasonal” shade that lends itself to many color combinations. Pantone also created a selection of ten palettes pairing Greenery with neutrals, pastels, brights, deeper tones, metallics, and even the two 2016 colors of the year, Rose Quartz and Serenity. These palettes easily cross over fashion, beauty, product, and interior design applications.

Pantone color palettes for 2017

Pantone color palettes for 2017

Do you plan to incorporate Greenery into your interiors? Here are some examples for inspiration.

Traditional Bedroom
Annalisa at Mediterra
Los Gatos Townhouse
Art&deco
You can count on Prestige Marble & Granite when it comes to selecting natural stone countertops that will integrate with the latest in design and color trends. Stop by our showroom and speak with our knowledgable staff anytime. Designers, builders, and homeowners are all welcome!

“Poised Taupe” is Sherwin Williams’ 2017 Color of the Year

Sherwin Williams' Color of the Year: Poised Taupe

The color Sherwin Williams anticipates defining 2017 is Poised Taupe, and here’s why: “This timeless neutral is modern, classic and a beautiful balance of warm and cool.”

Cool gray has been the reigning neutral in the design world the past few years, and it remains strong, but is now beginning to feel a little too cold and industrial for some. Poised Taupe has what people love about cool gray, but it also brings in the warmth of brown.

“It’s like gray and brown had a baby, and it became taupe.”

That’s how Sue Wadden, the director of color marketing for Sherwin-Williams, described the color on the Today Show. That’s a good description because taupe is not hot or cold, gray or brown, dark or light. It lives somewhere in the lukewarm middle between brown and gray.

According to Sherwin Williams:

“Poised Taupe creates a cozy lifestyle and brings a sense of sanctuary into our homes. It diffuses the stresses of the world outside our doors — so much so that we feel restored and in balance when we walk across our threshold.”

This feeling of coziness is what the Danes call hygge (pronounced hue-gah), a feeling that comes from creating the right atmosphere. Poised Taupe is just the color to conjure up hygge, according to Sherwin Williams.

Are you ready for some hygge in your home? Get inspired with this look at some beautiful spaces that utilize Poised Taupe:

There’s no doubt this cozy bedroom in Poised Taupe exudes welcoming warmth.

2010 Southern Living Showcase Home
Poised Taupe is a great choice for this monochromatic kitchen. And its a fabulous complement to the natural stone countertops!
Thermador
This dining room is sleek and modern, but the Poised Taupe on the ceiling adds warmth that might otherwise be lacking.
Tanglewood Residence
This contemporary living room shows that poised Taupe is definitely versatile, pairing well with the blue and yellow accents.
The Carlyle
When it comes to your countertops, Prestige Marble & Granite is here to help you with a vast selection of unique, exotic and rare natural stones from around the world. Our knowledgeable staff will guide you through selection, layout, design and installation. We welcome homeowners, designers, and contractors to browse our showroom any time!

Wondrous Waterfalls

Waterfall countertops have been rising in popularity recently, and we have to admit we love them (when they are installed properly!). A waterfall countertop ‘falls’ off the edge of a set of cabinets, creating the appearance of a continuous surface that blends from the top surface down the side. While the look is mostly a style choice, there are actually some practical reasons for installing them.

Prevents Scratches and Dings
End panels on typical wood islands and cabinets are usually high located in traffic areas, making them susceptible to scuffs, scratches and dings. Natural stone sides will withstand the abuse, keeping your island and cabinets looking pretty and new.

Hidden Storage
The waterfall can be used to hide appliances or create hidden storage space for any number of items.

Protects Against Water Damage
Waterfall counters aren’t exclusive to the kitchen. They can be integrated on bathroom cabinetry to cover and protect against water damage and splashing.

What better way to create a gorgeous, yet practical focal point in your home than with a sleek waterfall countertop? And whatever your personal design preference –traditional, rustic, modern, European, or farmhouse – waterfalls offer a truly distinct accent to any space. Here’s a look at few of our favorites for inspiration.

Rye, NY Home
Kitchen + Bath Artisans
Los Angeles Hills Modern Kitchen
Santa Clara
Current Showhome - 39 Watermark Road
Hudson Loft, NYC
Bird Key Contemporary
Corona del Mar Ocean Front
Richard Lane
Parsons Green House
Kitchens...the heart of the home
New Potomac residence
Westchester, NY
Westchester Dream Home
Fisher & Paykel
Park Lane Residence

Get even more waterfall countertop inspiration our Pinterest board!

We hope you have enjoyed this look at waterfall countertops fashioned from a variety of naturals stones in a myriad of styles. If you’re thinking of taking the waterfall plunge, you can be assured that the natural stone pros at Prestige Marble & Granite have the knowledge and experience to fabricate and install perfectly mitered waterfalls with a seamless appearance. Come browse our Columbia showroom and see for yourself!