Monday, May 9, 2016

6 kitchen and bath upgrades that are 'the whole package'

(BPT) - Let’s face it — once you get past high school, the people who go farthest in life are the ones who are the “whole package,” those who balance style, good looks and brains. The same can be said of kitchen and bath upgrades. The ones that will stand the test of time — the ones you’ll love as much in five years as you do the day they’re installed — are the improvements that blend style and intelligence.

Sure you might fall in love with that $5,000 built-in coffee maker, but are you going to adore it as much when you’re still paying for it five years from now? And when you sell your home one day, will buyers agree with you that it was worth giving up an entire walk-in closet to get five more square feet in the master bathroom?

Great bathrooms and kitchens really do sell homes, so it makes sense to invest in upgrades that are the whole package. They look great, are stylish, functional and enjoyable, and will give you a decent return on your investment when it comes time to sell.

Here are six kitchen and bathroom improvements that really are the total package:

1. Granite countertops

Countertops are both a major design feature and a vital necessity in both kitchens and baths. New, quality countertops improve the appearance and function of either room. Of course, granite is still a top choice for kitchen counters but it also goes well in the bathroom, giving vanities a high-end look. A USA Today study found more than half of buyers said they would pay more for a home with granite countertops.

2. Skylights
Whether in a kitchen or bathroom, adding solar-powered, fresh-air skylights will brighten the space with abundant daylight and freshen the air with natural ventilation that exhausts heat, humidity and odors. In baths, they also provide privacy. Energy Star-qualified no leak skylights like those from VELUX America can be operated by a touchpad programmable remote control, as can solar powered blinds in an array of designer colors and patterns, and are eligible for a 30 percent federal tax credit for the skylights, blinds and the cost of installation. Sun Tunnel tubular skylights make it possible to add natural light even in first-floor kitchens or bathrooms where there is no direct roof access.

3. Quality lighting
Lighting is both a practical and design consideration for kitchens and bathrooms. In addition to natural light sources, such as skylights and windows, it’s a good investment to install upgraded light fixtures. You should have multiple layers of light, including overhead for both rooms, task lighting or under-the-cabinet lighting in kitchens, and vanity lighting in the bathroom. Your design options are vast, and upgrading your lighting can be both a design statement and an improvement that enhances livability.

4. Eco-friendly fixtures and appliances

Of course you know new appliances and fixtures can make kitchens and baths look more appealing to buyers, and more enjoyable for you while you live in your home. But their value will be even greater if you choose options that can also help reduce your water, sewer and utility bills. From low-flow showerheads and ultra-high-efficiency toilets, to Energy Star-qualified dishwashers and refrigerators, eco-friendly fixtures and appliances are great design choices that will put money back in your pocket for years to come.

5. Tile

Tile is a big win for both kitchens and baths. Replacing worn or dated tile in showers or bathroom floors improves the look and function of the room. In kitchens, adding a tile backsplash is an affordable way to make a design statement while protecting walls from cooking spatters. Tile can also serve as a countertop material in kitchens and baths, where design flexibility and durability are essential.

6. Organization and storage solutions
From dishes, pots, pans and foodstuff in the kitchen, to towels and personal care items in the bathroom, you probably have a lot of stuff that needs to be stored in both rooms. So will future buyers! Adding cabinet and drawer organizers, as well as extra storage solutions, can make it easier for you to use both rooms. Plus, it will help reduce clutter, giving your kitchen and bath a more open, clean look.

You don’t need a huge budget to make kitchen and bathroom upgrades that really are the whole package. Even a minor renovation in either room can have a big impact on your home’s livability, beauty and resale value. For more tips on upgrades that are the whole package, contact the staff at Interior Surfaces. Give us a call at 614.761.7856 to make an appointment to meet with us at 4353 H Tuller Road, Dublin, OH 43017.

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

The 2016 kitchen design trends are on track to become timeless

(BPT) - Some kitchen design trends fade as quickly as they come in — tile countertops, naked windows or avocado-hued appliances may come to mind. Other trends, however, are so deeply rooted in good design that they’re destined to become timeless style statements — and enhance your kitchen with a look you’ll love as much in a decade as you do the first moment you see it.

Those are the trends homeowners should watch for in 2016 and incorporate into their kitchen upgrade plans, says stylist and designer Emily Henderson, season five winner of HGTV’s “Design Star.” Given nearly nine in 10 homeowners plan to renovate their homes in the near future with half of them planning to do so within the next year, according to a survey by LG Electronics, being armed with the right information will help make those renovations a success.
Timeless design has an enduring aesthetic that seamlessly complements a range of infinite kitchen styles and colors,” Henderson notes. “They create looks and enhance functionality in ways that will pay off for homeowners for years to come.”

Henderson points to three design trends to watch in 2016:

Open it up
Areas that seem small or cramped have never been a staple in homes. Look for design enhancements that create a more open atmosphere, like open shelving or glass-front cabinets, which appear contemporary, sleek and functional. Open storage encourages organization, cuts clutter and eliminates chaos since the contents are always on display. They also provide a great way for homeowners to display their pretty dishware, Henderson notes.

Let your personality shine
Modern designs and the sheer number of home décor products make it easier than ever to personalize virtually any design theme. You can add a dash of your personality to your kitchen decor in many ways. Use decorative accents on counters and focus on underscoring a theme you love in the rest of the house, for instance. A lived-in look with touches of style adds life to the space. “I love vintage salt and pepper shakers, brass or wooden utensils, glass canisters, wooden bowls, enamel pots and even vintage cookbooks,” Henderson says. “You can find so many ways to add personal flair to a design, and it’s a sensibility that will never go out of style.”

Contrast is good
Some combinations will always be on trend, and Henderson predicts more of them will be showing up in kitchen design in 2016. “Black and white, metallics like brass, gold or copper paired with natural and wooden touches — these combos will never tire,” she says. “They can be used alone or in combination with other elements. You really can’t go wrong with any of them.”

For more kitchen design inspiration contact the staff at Interior Surfaces. Give us a call at 614.761.7856 to make an appointment to meet with us at 4353 H Tuller Road, Dublin, OH 43017.

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Six style tips to prepare your home for the holiday season

(BPT) - Bored with the whirlwind of red and green decor that inundates every home during the holiday season? This year, more homeowners are thinking beyond the traditional when decorating for winter celebrations. Expert insight into the year’s top decor trends can help anyone create impressive, elegant holiday style with minimal effort.

Red and green will always be classic, but when it comes to holiday decor, rules are meant to be broken,” says Kirsty Froelich, design director for The Tile Shop. “Anyone can use inventive color schemes, fun patterns and smart home updates to create spaces that embrace the essence of the season.”

Froelich notes six top trends to keep in mind when decorating for the holiday season:

1. Feel festive with florals
An easy first step to bring your home into the holiday season is to add festive fresh or dry floral arrangements. Evergreens and poinsettias always convey the essence of the season, but blooms in hues of rich purple, crisp white and even funky fuchsia will add cheerful energy to any room. A small floral arrangement on a bathroom vanity, for example, adds warmth and color — a particularly nice touch if you’re hosting guests.

2. Beautify with backsplashes
Tiling your backsplash is an easy update that instantly upgrades a kitchen or bar space, and serves as a great conversation starter for guests. A backsplash also can be a relatively inexpensive project with a stunning impact.

3. Be merry with metallics
To create a show-stopping visual effect, use metallics in details throughout your home. Chrome and nickel are hot, and there’s a current resurgence of brass and gold. If you have metal in your backsplash tiles, add a centerpiece in the same metal to tie the entire room together. Keep in mind that less is more. Thoughtful touches of holiday decor will have bigger visual impact than an overload of figurines and frills.

4. Get jolly with geometric patterns
From gift wrap to seasonal fabric, geometric patterns are on trend for the upcoming holiday. A gorgeous geometric tablecloth is the ideal backdrop for a big family feast. Geometric mosaic backsplashes leave a lasting impression during the holiday season and into the new year. Finally, geometric wrapping paper in vivid colors like teal or chartreuse, make for an extra stylish tree.

5. Wow with window treatments
Don’t overlook the potential of your windows when adding holiday pizzazz to your home. By using fabrics that feature a festive theme or pattern, you can easily create temporary window treatments that bring a space together. Simply visit your local craft store, pick out a bolt of two of fabric that blends with your holiday aesthetic, and have the appropriate lengths cut. Then simply drape and enjoy.

6. Give your fireplace a facelift
A fireplace is the quintessential gathering spot for friends and family during holiday celebrations. A sleek stone makeover will update any drab or dated fireplace into a stylish focal point in your home. Add extra ambiance with candles, flowers and other simple decor on the mantel to make the space feel special.

There’s no better time to let your home shine than the holidays,” says Froelich. “Adding holiday greenery, a few metallic touches and whimsical window updates will make your home feel festive. Now’s the perfect time to get that tile project done that’s been on the back burner, so you can show off your hard work and the amazing new space to all visitors.”

For more home design inspiration as you prep for this holiday season contact the staff at Interior Surfaces. Give us a call at 614.761.7856 to make an appointment to meet with us at 4353 H Tuller Road, Dublin, OH 43017.

Friday, September 18, 2015

Floor your house guests with creative design twists

(BPT) - Hardwood flooring brings enduring beauty, charm and value to a home. Not content to keep a good thing underfoot, inspired homeowners are now finding new and creative locations to use it for a dramatic effect.

Using hardwood flooring on walls and ceilings is becoming an increasingly prominent trend. The rationale goes beyond aesthetic. While the wide variety of colors and finishes do provide myriad design options, hardwood flooring is also very durable and easy to maintain.

Here are just a few of the many considerations for creatively using hardwood flooring:

1. Deck the walls.
Just like floors, there are a multitude of colors, patterns and finishes that can be installed on walls. After choosing the hardwood to match your decor, design a layout for how high you want it to go and how you want the planks positioned. Choose a horizontal layout for a traditional look, or go with a vertical or diagonal layout for a more distinctive statement. It’s important to decide this in advance to avoid wasting materials.

2. Ceilings to look up to.
If you want your ceiling to take center stage, it’s best to keep the floor neutral and muted. For cohesion, use the same tone on both the ceiling and floor. In an all-white room, try a wooden ceiling with a matte finish for a complementary look.

3. Make more of less.
Hardwood flooring accents can help you make the most of a smaller space. In the bedroom, place hardwood flooring around and above your bed to create a headboard. This creates a familiar look and ties a room together without taking up extra space. Another idea is to use hardwood flooring to create an accent wall. This makes the room feel larger by focusing attention to one wall.

4. Choose the right flooring.
It is important to choose the right hardwood flooring for specific applications. Lighter-weight products – usually 5/16-inch to 1/2-inch thick – are easier to install and keep in place over time. Flooring types and textures such as acacia or handscraped styles add a distinctive character to rooms. The team at Interior Surfaces can help you choose the right flooring.

Creative options still abound if you’re a homeowner who literally remains grounded with their flooring. When deciding how to decorate an expansive room, for example, different colors or species of hardwood can be used to section off separate areas – especially in open spaces commonly found in loft style and other contemporary construction.

Imagination is ultimately the only limit for homeowners and the staff at Interior Surfaces are here to help! Give us a call at 614.761.7856 to make an appointment to meet with us at 4353 H Tuller Road, Dublin, OH 43017.

Thursday, July 9, 2015

Dress up your Floors with Top Tile Trends

(BPT) - If you are renovating any area of your home, it may be time to try something new—such as bringing tile into main living areas in addition to your bathrooms and kitchen. New designs, styles and technologies are making tile the most versatile and accessible flooring material.

“Tile has always been durable and easy to maintain,” says Kevin McDaniel, director of product development and design services for a leading tile retailer. “Tile has a long life span and classic good looks, making it a favorite flooring of choice wherever homeowners need a floor material that’s both practical and beautiful. Even more design options are available now, making tile a smart floor surface in virtually any room of the home.”
Homeowners, builders, designers and product developers are thinking outside the box when incorporating tile into renovations and new builds. From bringing tile flooring up the wall, to using the same tile flooring across multiple rooms, they’re working with tile in non-traditional ways. Here are some top tile trends to consider for your interior design project:

1. The look of real wood with a rustic finish. Many of the larger-format faux wood tiles mimic the look of real hardwood floors. Less expensive and more durable than real wood, these tile floors are practical yet beautiful choices for active households with children and pets. Details evoke the character of real wood, right down to the nails. “Rustic faux wood is making a huge splash because of its warm, earthy coloring and unusual time-worn finishes such as aged paint, a finish hard to achieve with real wood. I foresee it continuing to be a very popular design trend,” McDaniel says.

2. Those longer tile planks. While standard square tile sizes will always have their place in home décor, rectangular tiles – otherwise known as planks — are gaining popularity. New 12-by-24-inch tiles are a hot choice in bathrooms and 6-by-36-inch tiles or 8-inch by 8-feet planks (often in wood-grained looks) are a favorite for living areas.
“Using longer planks can help smaller spaces look larger, and create an appealing consistency across multiple rooms,” says McDaniel. “While consumers may be familiar with traditional tile shapes such as square or hexagon, these longer tiles offer exciting new design flexibility.”

3. That poured concrete look. While concrete is a trendy design material right now, it’s not practical for every household or application. New tile styles create the look of poured or stained concrete at a fraction of the cost, and with all the durability, versatility and ease associated with tile. Tile options range from long rectangular 8-by-18-inch or 12-by-24-inch planks to 18-by-18-inch squares. Tiles are rectified—the edge is cut completely straight—and grout joints are very narrow to further create the look of seamless concrete.

4. The warmth of heated floors. While heated floors were once a luxury option for homeowners, they’re becoming increasingly mainstream. Tile lends itself to radiant heat beneath the floor. You can find a full line of accessories, including thermostats, which can control the heat in any floor in your home. This includes both the shower floor and shower benches.

5. Unconventional grout and tile design ideas. Using a high-contrast grout color can make the floor pop, and it’s a tactic that works well with mosaic designs. Choosing the right grout color is just as important as the tile you select. Also popular is the concept of mosaic designs that mimic an area rug within a larger section of tile flooring and create the look of custom art within the floor.

Shopping for tile designs and inspiration is easy with help from the staff at Interior Surfaces. Give us a call at 614.761.7856 to make an appointment to meet with us at 4353 H Tuller Road, Dublin, OH 43017.

Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Hot master bath trends for 2015 and beyond

(BPT) - When it comes to renovating spaces in your home, the master bath should be top of mind. Leading master bath trends for 2015 go beyond functionality to incorporate features that complement the design aesthetic and provide a touch of luxury for lasting results.
By understanding top trends and incorporating them into your remodel, you can instantly increase your home’s comfort, style and value. Renovated master baths are not only in demand, but bathroom remodels also provide one of the highest rates of return on investment. A midrange bathroom remodel recoups 72.5 percent during resale, according to Remodeling Magazine’s 2014 Cost vs. Value report.

Here are the hottest trends in master bath renovations for 2015:

Zen-like designs meet a contemporary aesthetic
Homeowners want modern designs with uninterrupted sight lines, but they don’t want their bathroom to feel cold or calculated. Master baths are becoming spa-like retreats with upgrades that help homeowners look and feel their best. The inclusion of modern technology, like programmable water features and smart televisions, is offset by designing with organic textures, like bamboo, cotton and marble for a Zen-like feel.

Subway tiles reign king
The master bath is the perfect place to incorporate tile work – it’s durable, beautiful and water resistant. Despite the availability of thousands of tile designs, one classic option is trending: subway tile. These aren’t grandma’s bland rectangle tiles. Modern subway tiles are available in a wide array of colors to add a splash of personality to master bathrooms. A few popular subway tile colors include slate gray, cobalt blue and winter white. Tile experts mix tiles of different colors to create truly timeless, one-of-a-kind designs.

Radiant heated floors increase comfort
Cold toes are the last thing you want when enjoying your master bath, which is why radiant flooring is considered a must-have for 2015. Heated flooring is trending particularly in areas where the temperature drops during the evening or the winter is lengthy. Electric radiant heat is typically installed under tile flooring and is regulated with a temperature gauge – an effective way to add luxurious warmth to the entire master bath suite.

Spa-like showers create a personal oasis
More than just a place to get clean, homeowners are using the master bath shower as a place where they can escape the stresses of daily life and enjoy personal time. In order to create this oasis, designers are incorporating a variety of upscale features into showers. From steam showers, designed to open pores, to multiple shower heads that provide mist from every angle, the shower is more customized than ever before.

Modern metallics add visual interest
Metals used in the bathroom add visual interest and style. While stainless steel is a safe choice, higher-end bathrooms frequently feature metals that convey interesting colors and textures, such as oil-rubbed bronze and brushed nickel. Brass tones are making a comeback in unusual hues like warm-colored copper, and these options add richness to the overall bathroom design.

Big and bold light fixtures create personality
Homeowners are setting all subtleties aside when selecting master bath light fixtures. Unexpected lighting will be a statement piece for the master bath in 2015. From glamorous crystal chandeliers to clusters of hand-blown glass globes or drum pendants made with laser-cut metal, light fixtures are the finishing touch that redefines a master bath’s personality and functionality.

For more information about designing your dream bathroom call Interior Surfaces at 614.761.7856 and make an appointment to meet with us at 4353 H Tuller Road, Dublin, OH 43017.

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Choosing the hardwood floor that's right for you

(BPT) - After kids go back to school, homeowners finally have time to complete remodeling projects. This makes autumn a popular time for home improvements. In fact, home improvement activity is expected to peak in the final three months of 2014, according to the Leading Indicator of Remodeling Activity developed by the Joint Center for Housing Studies of Harvard University.

Installing hardwood flooring is one of the most popular renovation projects. Homeowners desire hardwood floors for many reasons. They’re durable and can withstand the wear and tear of playful kids and pets. They retain a classic, natural look and feel, adding to a home’s elegance. Plus, hardwood floors are simple to clean and maintain.

Since a floor is a key design element, it’s important to make sure the right one is selected based on its location and the homeowner’s lifestyle and personal preference. With the wide variety of flooring types, choosing the right floor for a space can be overwhelming. These key tips will help homeowners find and install the perfect hardwood floor.

Location, location, location
Where the flooring will be installed is an important consideration to ensure the floor will retain its beauty for generations. If on or above ground level, there are a wide variety of options available, from solid hardwood to bamboo varieties. For below-ground-level installations, such as basements, it’s important to choose a flooring type – such as engineered hardwood – that can withstand moisture.

Suit your lifestyle
If the hardwood floor will be in a well-traveled part of a home, or serve as ground zero for active kids and pets, it’s best to choose a wood variety that is at least as hard as red oak, as this is the industry benchmark for comparing the relative hardness of wood species. Viewing how floors compare on this scale and considering lifestyle attributes will help determine the flooring that’s right for a room. In addition, there are other flooring varieties to consider such as cork, laminate and vinyl for those who want the most durable hardwood alternative.

Color your home with style
Various hardwood floor hues and finishes can complete the look of a room or set the foundation for a room’s design, so it’s important to base color and species on personal preference. Somerset Hardwood Flooring, for example, is a premier line of hardwood flooring that offers a range of colors and finishes.

For help choosing the hardwood floor that's right for you, call InteriorSurfaces at 614.761.7856 and make an appointment to meet with any of our staff at 4353 H Tuller Road, Dublin, OH 43017.