Tag: renovation

Best Places to Upgrade Your Home

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Refresh your home using these simple techniques that will bring an air of sophistication and increase its resale value.

Paint the Kitchen Cabinets

You don’t have to replace your kitchen cabinets to get a completely fresh look for your kitchen. Adding new cabinetry can be expensive, but something as simple as a new coat of paint can make the room feel like new. If your kitchen is outdated, painting the cabinets can make it feel more modern and cleaner.

Update Cabinet Handles

Enhance the modern look of your kitchen even more with updated cabinet handles. Swap out generic or out-of-date handles for newer, more stylish ones to give your kitchen an entirely new look and feel. “It’s clear that brushed brass is year’s stand-out metal, giving a luxurious finish to handles, small appliances and even plug sockets [livingetc.com.]”

Build and Furnish a Backyard Deck

A beautiful backyard deck offers a seamless transition from indoors to out. Aside from offering you the perfect place to flip burgers and catch some rays, having a deck will increase the resale value of your home. Experts suggest using a rustic, natural wood.

If your home already has a deck, consider reviving it with a power wash and hand scrub. Then, brush on a protective coat of semitransparent stain to protect it from the elements.

Adding a outdoor furniture from chaise lounges to table and chairs creates the ultimate relaxation space. Choose outdoor furniture that compliments your high-end luxury furniture from A. Rudin.

Create a New Look with High-End Luxury Furniture

The best furniture features subtle curves, balanced line and proportion, and refined detail. Your aim when choosing furniture upgrades for your home should be to transcend the fashion of the moment, creating a sense of timeless style and luxury. High-end luxury furniture from A. Rudin is perfectly suited to today’s elegant interiors. A. Rudin’s classic upholstered furniture and casegoods are custom made for exceptional quality and comfort.

Upgrade Landscaping

The front of your house is the first thing people see. Yes, improving your “curb appeal” increases the value of your home. But it also makes your house look more friendly and inviting to guests, and creates a more satisfying place to return to every evening after work. Any improvements in landscaping — from planning a flower bed to surrounding the house with a hedge– are worth your while. “As for big-ticket investments, like trees, they aren’t just nice to look at; they also stave off erosion, block storm-water runoff, reduce carbon dioxide emissions, and filter groundwater pollutants [realsimple.com.]”

Hide the Eyesores

Some things that are necessary to your home’s function can be hidden from sight and still work perfectly. Putting hinges on a canvas portrait or picture frame can turn it into an excellent coverup for unsightly thermostats and alarms.

Install a Water Filter

Millions of people drink bottled water because of concerns over the purity of tap water. Some just don’t prefer the taste. These problems exist around the country, regardless of the whether the water comes from a municipal pipeline or a ground well.

Installing an under-sink water filtration system is a cost-efficient way to ditch the plastic bottles and reduce your carbon footprint. Save the earth the plastic waste by investing in a reuseable water bottle and filling up from your new filtered faucet water every morning.

High-End Luxury Furniture from A. Rudin

The furniture from A. Rudin has been made in Los Angeles for four generations by dedicated craftspeople using old-world skills. It is custom furniture for elegant living: residential, hospitality, contract. Each piece is smoothly finished with exacting care. A. Rudin interprets classic seating to suit personal tastes and today’s interiors. Discover A. Rudin products here.

Most Common Mistakes in Kitchen Design

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One truth of family life that transcends cultural boundaries is that everyone loves to congregate in the kitchen. A redone kitchen adds value to your home and makes all that extra time you and your family spend there more enjoyable.

When designing your new kitchen, avoid some of the most common mistakes people make with this handy guide to what NOT to do.

TO create your dream kitchen, you must begin with the proper surfacing materials. To learn more about what quartz kitchen countertops can do for you, visit Vadara Quartz today.

Not Creating Enough Counter Space

Many people regret not creating enough counter space in their kitchens for all the activities that go on there. To create an estimate of how much counter space you will want, make a list of the activities you will need counter areas for. Then, evaluate how they may overlap when two or more people use the kitchen.

Next, consider your materials. Laminates are rugged and heavy-duty, but stone, concrete, quartz, metallic, and natural wood countertops are all beautiful options to consider.

Not Including Enough Electrical Outlets

When everything from your blender to your espresso machine to your cell phone plugs into the wall, you know you’re going to need more than two outlets. Choosing which appliances you want to place in specific locations and placing your outlets there will help you plan your space better and halt the tendency for them to accumulate on countertops.

Not Establishing Good Flow

“In kitchen design, the kitchen triangle links the three areas of greatest activity: the sink, stove, and refrigerator [source: How Stuff Works].” Narrow aisles and islands that cut off access to these key areas make kitchens less efficient. You should never have two cabinets that cannot be open at the same time, a refrigerator door that opens away from the heart of the kitchen, or a dishwasher that prevents you from standing at the sink. Tip: When you’re designing your new kitchen, imagine opening every single door at the same time – if anything comes into contact, its time to remeasure.

Forgetting About the Trash

Make sure to carefully consider trash placement – it should be close enough to the exterior door, or have a clear path to the door, for easy disposal. In our contemporary, eco-conscious environment, you’ll want separate bins for regular, paper and plastic waste. Hide the waste baskets in your cabinetry and spoil yourself by installing soft-close cabinets.

Too Much Stainless Steel

Many of your appliances – such as the dishwasher, stove, and refrigerator – may have chrome finishes. Keep in mind that adding a stainless microwave, toaster, and set of pans can create an overwhelming metallic shine in your kitchen, making you feel like you live in a commercial warehouse instead of your own home. Some solutions: consider black or colored appliances. Or, put refrigerators and microwaves behind cabinetry paneling.

Not Having Enough Types of Lighting

Technically, your kitchen is supposed to have three types of lighting: general illumination, task lighting, and accent lighting. If you don’t have the latter two, your kitchen will look too fluorescent and sterile.

In most kitchens, the general lighting comes from a combination of overhead lights, natural light from windows, and ambient light contributed by a fixture in an adjacent room. Many people neglect to provide enough task lighting in their kitchens; the prep areas, the sink, and the stove should all have task lighting of their own. Use accent lights to show off your most beautiful design elements.

* Energy Star compliant compact fluorescent bulbs use about 25 percent of the power of a regular incandescent light bulb. This 75 percent savings would add up to about $600 million if every American home upgraded just one light bulb [source: Energy Star].

Following Trends Too Closely

Always remember: Your goal is home improvement with an eye towards selling. This means you need to stick with a style that’s appropriate to the rest of your home and suits the tastes of the people in your area. It also means you should forego updates with prices beyond your neighborhood’s range (for example, a commercial oven in a standard home.) Some kitchen investments will add to the value of your home, but consider the fickle nature of design trends. Most “have a short half-life, and when they’re out, they’re really out.”

Quartz Kitchen Countertops

Vadara Quartz comes in classic colors and styles designed for modern living. Vadara’s quartz kitchen countertops are nonporous and can be used well in your kitchen as countertop or floor tile because it will not absorb food or liquids like granite does. Unlike other premium surfaces, it is virtually maintenance free.

How to Best Light Your Kitchen

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There are many things to think about when designing your kitchen lighting. Consider the natural light in the room, the layout of your kitchen, and your budget size. Also, be sure to check on the electrical wiring in your kitchen to make sure it is up-to-date.

Vadara Quartz solid surface quartz countertops pair beautifully with all types of kitchen lighting, to give your kitchen the depth and contemporary touch you’ve been seeking.

Natural Light

Before you even begin to plan where your kitchen units will be placed and how you will light them, you should think about the natural lighting in your kitchen. Take into consideration the ceiling height as well as where the natural light falls at various times of day. Plan your kitchen so that you have the best light when you use your kitchen most. Vadara Quartz Bianco Perla countertops reflect the natural light beautifully, capturing sun and shadow in a soft and subtle cream color with pronounced veining.

Electrical Fittings

After you decide where your units, appliances, furniture, and fittings will be located, you will be ready to consider artificial lighting. By this stage you should have the best layout to suit the space and natural light. Choose the styles you want to include early, as these will affect your budget; you’ll also need to let the builder and electrician know your plans for wiring the fittings and switches. Try your best to include fixtures, switches, and plugs in your technical drawings.

Your Budget

Updating your light fittings to more energy efficient LEDs is a cost-effective move. These will initially cost more than standard Halogen or Compact Fluorescent Lamps (CFLs,) but the bulbs will last for up to 25 years. They can also offer the benefit of providing different shades of light to suit your needs.

Mood Lighting

Use LED strips facing upwards on top of plinths and cabinets to create a floating sensation, up-light tall ceilings and architectural features. Capture the mood with countertops from Vadara Quarts Illumina Collection. These moody and romantic quartz tops are translucent, and shine when backlit.

Lighting that Works for You

Another, less often thought of option, is to have internal lighting in cabinets on motion sensors so that the lights come on when you open the door. This can be especially useful in lower cabinets which don’t get as much light from the ceiling lights or windows.

Zoned Lighting

If the kitchen is part of an open floor plan, the best way to maximize all areas is to install task lighting in the kitchen and mood lighting in the social areas to define the different zones.
You can install task lighting under top cabinets which sit over a countertop, like circular LED spot or strip lighting, which give off soft illumination. Pair your task lighting with Vadara Quartz Absolute Blanc countertops for a clean and fresh finish.


LED dimmable ceiling spotlights or pendants work best over a kitchen island (just make sure to light the right part of the space so that you are not standing in your own shadow when preparing food or eating.) Vadara Quartz Denali looks great on an island countertop – its speckled white/gray color blends well with your kitchen, camouflages spills, and reflects the spotlight or pendant lighting for a cool finish.

Top 5 Kitchen Lighting Tips

1. Don’t put lights too close to cabinetry because the glare from the lights could discolor the veneer.
2. If you have low ceilings, be careful not to overpower your kitchen with too many lights.
3. Kitchen lighting should be placed directly over walkways, prep areas, sinks and cook tops. This way no matter what you’re doing you won’t have any dark corners.
4. Use spotlights on dimmer switches so you can easily control light levels.
5. Think carefully about where the switches are positioned (don’t overlook the details.)

Solid Surface Quartz Countertops

Vadara Quartz offers solid surface quartz countertops with the most natural color palette available, combining beauty, function, innovation, and value. Vadara Quartz is part of a Family of Brands which includes additional surfaces, sinks, and faucets. Their New 2018 Collection is now available!