Saturday, December 15, 2012

Universal Design Kitchen - Designing For Different Abilities

   Whether you're remodeling due to a disability or just planning for the future, keeping safety and accessibility in mind is always AK's policy. Kitchens can be remodeled with ease of use, sanitation and improved lighting in mind. Ranges with stove controls at the back may be dangerous for an older person with limited mobility who must reach over a hot cooktop to turn off a burner. Your safety is AK's first concern when analyzing home modifications for aging-in-place.  As a CAPS (certified aging in place) remodeler, we are fully qualified to handle home modifications on a need basis, from ramps for wheelchairs and motorized scooters to multiple features for making everyday activities easier for the aging population.
   AK designed a kitchen remodel in Woodstock, Georgia for a client who had limited mobility. Not only did she want her disability to be designed for, but also her great sense of style! Universal design and aging in place does NOT mean frumpy. Just look at this kitchen after! 


Stunning & Functional - The Perfect Combination

 Dropped Cooktop - Knobs In Front

Questions? Comments?

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Peppermint Holiday Serving Tray Craft

  These creative trays are so adorable and perfect for serving your holiday cookies, cupcakes and treats! This is a fabulous holiday decor craft. Imagine bringing the hostess or your neighbor a plate of Christmas cookies on a tray they can EATAnd maybe the neatest part is that each tray only costs about 75 cents!

-Peppermint Serving Tray-
What You’ll Need:

-Mints - (Tip: The Cheaper The Better! Buy the ones that have white in the center, and striped only on the rim of the peppermint.)
-A cookie sheet
-Parchment paper
-An oven

How to Make It:

1. Heat your oven to 350 degrees F.

2. Arrange your mints on a parchment paper lined cookie sheet. Your mints should be roughly ¼ inch apart, leaving some extra room on the sides for melting.

3. Bake it for approximately 5-7 minutes.

4.  Once it’s out of the oven, let it cool slightly (30 sec) and trim the edges.

5.  Use as a tray, but be careful not to add any hot items to the tray, even once it's cooled.

*Tip: You can also use a cookie cutter while the peppermint is still warm and cut shapes to harden into ornaments! 

6. You can go as crazy as you want with this: Use green & red to make a design, spell a word or even use sticks instead of mints!

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Atlanta Highrise Remodel

   How can you add value, bolster functionality and livability in your home without spending a fortune? This is a common question we receive. While the answer is different for every home and every family, we can share the formula we engineered for this AK client purchasing a condo in Atlanta. AK recently completed this Atlanta highrise condo renovation project that encompassed many parts of this home:

  • The engineered floors were sanded and a darker stain was added. This dramatically improved and updated the look of the whole space. Having nice floors is like having a good bone structure!

  • Sometimes it's all about appearance. The grout on all the tile was dirty, but the budget did not allow for all new tile. AK scraped out the grout and replaced the grout with the same tiles, so that the tile floor looked new. This will give the tile a longer life, better protection from moisture and a prettier aesthetic!

  • The laundry and front closet flooring was removed and tiled to match the rest of the tile in the house. Because storage space is at a premium, in the laundry area AK built a platform to support the stacked washer and dryer and then built shelves for additional storage. A basic closet system was also installed in the master bath closet. You can see "before" pictures on our website:
  • The master bath now has 2 sinks, colonial cream granite and additional storage was added over the toilet with new counter and cabinets. A "Sea Gray" was chosen for the walls in this room.
  •  The rest of the condo was painted a "Shaker Beige" with the same color taken down 2 shads and used for the ceilings. The trim was also painted in this color in a semi-gloss.

  • The kitchen has 42” wall cabinets in a poplar with toffee stain, the base cabinets had new doors and drawer fronts added and AK painted the frames to match the stain. As a cost-savings measure, AK was able to save the kitchen countertop by not refacing the base cabinets.  Under cabinet lighting was also added in the kitchen.

Monday, December 3, 2012

Who Knew The North Pole Was So Shabby Chic?

"...Op op op op Oppan North Pole Style..." 

   While the thought of intentionally decorating your home to look like Santa's workshop and the North Pole may be laughable, much like our Gangnam Style reference, when you see what we mean you may be singing a different tune! While watching Elf this year, a family holiday favorite, we watched Buddy the Elf humorously trudge through his daily routine at the North Pole and suddenly thought, "I wonder what paint color they used for the Elf's houses? What stencils? What faux techniques?"
   All of you diy and home trend enthusiasts can sympathize with this inability to shut off your "designer side", even during a pretty hilarious movie. What caught our eye was the similarity in the North Pole home movie sets to many trendy decorating techniques we're seeing today, 9 years after the movie was made. Take a look:
Grey, tone on tone painted and distressed wood. 

A Popular Project On Hometalk & Houzz? DIY Kids Room Shabby Chic Furniture Decor? NO! A Super Trendy North Pole Bedroom From ELF!
The Natural Materials, Embellished Furniture, Cool Palette...All Popular Design Trends. Who Knew ELF Was So Hip?

Santa's Fireplace From ELF? Nope! A Winter White Christmas Mantle On Hometalk:

Luxury In Gray

  Adapting this North Pole Style can be beautiful and easy! There are no shortage of projects and how-to's on Hometalk: You can even search for shabby chic, gray paint or whatever you're looking for! 
  And if you're looking for the PERFECT gray paint, you need to read our blog: 50 Shades Of Gray (Paint)