January 2024

Illustration: Shutterstock

A Guide to Sustainable & Eco-Friendly Home Remodeling

Deciding to renovate instead of constructing a new home is the first step in eco-friendly remodeling. Reusing existing materials provides for the most negligible environmental impact. Incorporating sustainable, renewable, and recycled materials, energy efficiency, water conservation, and indoor air quality in the design of your remodel will make your home more comfortable and have the lowest impact on the environment.

Here’s a guide on incorporating sustainable and eco-friendly upgrades into your home.

Energy-Efficient Appliances and Lighting

Upgrade your home with energy-efficient appliances and lighting fixtures. Look for appliances with the ENERGY STAR label, indicating they meet strict energy efficiency guidelines. Choose LED lightbulbs as they consume less energy and have a staggeringly longer lifespan than traditional incandescent bulbs. LED bulbs afford approximately 50,000 hours of light, with some brands boasting as many as 100,000 hours. If you use your lights for 10 hours daily, LEDs should serve you well for close to 14 years. They are now available in several color temperatures, including warm white, cool white, and daylight.

Use Smart Home Technology 

Illustration: Greener Ideal
Incorporate smart home technology to optimize energy consumption. Smart thermostats, for example, learn your heating and cooling patterns and adjust accordingly, helping you save energy. You can also invest in smart lighting systems and automated window treatments to maximize natural light and passive heating and minimize energy usage.

Look for Sustainable Flooring 

Choose eco-friendly flooring options to enhance the sustainability of your home. If you have hardwood floors, refinishing rather than replacing them has the most negligible environmental impact and will likely be the most cost-effective. Consider sustainable materials like bamboo, cork, sustainably harvested wood, or reclaimed wood. Remember that the material may be sustainable because it continues to grow, but it is not eco-friendly if shipped from a long distance. Materials like tile and linoleum are long-lasting, easy to clean, and not damaged by water. Linoleum from natural materials such as Flax seed oil, wood flour, pine rosins, jute, limestone, and pigments can last up to 40 years. Vinyl flooring, however, is not eco-friendly as it is made from petroleum.

Use Recycled and Reclaimed Materials

Embrace the charm of recycled and reclaimed materials in your remodeling project. Incorporate reclaimed wood for flooring or accent walls, countertops made from recycled glass or concrete, and fixtures crafted from recycled metals. These materials not only add character but also contribute to the reduction of waste.

Pay Attention to Insulation and Ventilation

Ensure your home is adequately insulated to conserve energy. Proper insulation helps maintain a consistent indoor temperature, reducing the need for excessive heating or cooling. Additionally, invest in efficient ventilation systems to improve indoor air quality and reduce the need for air conditioning.

Opt for Native Landscaping

Extend your eco-friendly approach to the outdoors by incorporating native and drought-tolerant plants in your landscaping. Native plants are adapted to the local climate, requiring less water and maintenance. This supports biodiversity and creates a more sustainable and resilient landscape. Plant deciduous trees on the South side of your home that provide summer shade and winter sunlight for future generations.
Photo: Dig Your Garden

Choose Eco-Friendly Paints and Finishes

Opt for low-VOC (volatile organic compounds) or zero-VOC paints, finishes, and adhesives. Traditional paints release harmful chemicals, contributing to indoor air pollution. Eco-friendly alternatives minimize the environmental impact and are better for your health.

Use Eco-Friendly Window Treatments

Select window treatments that enhance energy efficiency. Options such as thermal curtains or shades help regulate indoor temperatures by reducing heat loss in winter and heat gain in summer. This results in energy savings and increased comfort.

Choose Energy-Efficient Windows and Doors

Photo: © rh2010 / adobe stock
Upgrade to energy-efficient windows and doors that improve insulation and reduce energy costs, with the added benefit of noise control. Look for products with high energy performance ratings to maximize efficiency.

Sustainability is an Ongoing Process

Commit to ongoing sustainability by incorporating eco-friendly practices into your daily life. Perform regular maintenance on energy-efficient appliances, ensure proper insulation, and continue to explore ways to reduce your environmental impact.

A sustainable and eco-friendly home remodel is an investment in the future and a responsible choice for the present. Integrating these practices into your home remodeling project, you contribute to a greener planet while enjoying the benefits of a healthier and more energy-efficient home.

December 2023

Beautiful and bright living room with arched windows, 2 sofas, and a chair
Photo: Boston Globe
How to Get a Luxury Remodel without Breaking the Bank

Creating luxury in a home goes beyond just expensive materials and designer finishes. It’s about creating a feeling of indulgence, comfort, and sensory delight. Here are some key elements that contribute to a sense of luxury in a home.

Space and Flow:

  • Generous proportions: Large, airy rooms with high ceilings evoke a sense of spaciousness and freedom.
  • Seamless flow: Open floor plans or well-connected spaces encourage movement and create a sense of visual continuity.
  • Natural light: Abundant sunlight streaming through large windows adds warmth, brightness, and a connection to nature.

Materials and Finishes:

  • High-quality craftsmanship: Solid wood, natural stone, hand-woven textiles, and custom details speak of quality and care.
  • Layered textures: A mix of textures like velvet, linen, leather, and wood creates visual interest and tactile pleasure.

Sensory Indulgence:

  • Calming sounds: A gentle water fountain, crackling fireplace, or soft music soothes the soul and creates a tranquil atmosphere.
  • Luxurious textiles: Sumptuous throws, plush cushions, and soft rugs underfoot invite you to sink in and relax.

Personalized Touches:

  • Artful expression: Original artwork, meaningful collections, and objects with personal stories add soul and individuality.
  • Clutter-free haven: A clean and organized space allows your design elements to shine and promotes a sense of calm.
  • Hidden conveniences: Smart home technology, automated lighting, and heated floors add an element of effortless luxury.
Luxury bathroom with chandelier, oval free-standing bathtub, and all white tile
Photo: Ceramic Tile Center
Making decisions up-front on your budget and priorities is essential to get the most out of your remodel. As a design-build contractor, we can suggest possibilities for remodeling your home and help you weigh the cost/benefit of your choices to help you get the most out of your remodeling dollars.
Splurge on High-Impact Areas

Instead of spreading your budget thin across the entire house, concentrate your “luxury” spending in high-impact areas that make a significant difference. Spaces like the kitchen and bathrooms often provide the best return on investment, as these are rooms where luxury is most noticeable.

Consider where you can remove non-structural walls or raise the ceilings to create a sense of a larger space and better flow between rooms. Select statement finishes such as marble or quartz countertops and backsplashes in the kitchen or a furniture-like vanity in the bathroom. These focal points can create immediate opulence without requiring a substantial budget for the whole project.

Modern bathroom with backlit mirror and elegant Kohler faucet
Photo: Kohler Smart Home
Choose Timeless Materials
Luxury doesn’t always mean choosing the most expensive materials; it’s about selecting those that stand the test of time. Look for countertops in the kitchen and bathroom made of materials like granite, marble, or quartz in white or neutral tones. Select simple tile designs using porcelain, ceramic, or marble tile for backsplashes and shower and tub surrounds – again in neutral colors. These materials look luxurious, will never look outdated, and add value to your home.


Hardwood or wood-look tiles in flooring provide an elegant touch and are more budget-friendly than other options. Investing in quality materials can save you money in the long run by reducing the need for frequent replacements or repairs.
A selection of unique chandeliers from Amazon Home
Photo: Amazon Home
Use Lighting Creatively
The right lighting fixtures can transform your home environment, giving it a more luxurious feel. Consider installing statement light fixtures, such as a chandelier in the dining room, pendant lights in the kitchen, or a multi-level lighting figure in a stairwell between the first and second floors. These additions can become focal points, adding a touch of glamour to your space.
Explore affordable lighting options (such as the ones above found on Amazon) at local retailers or other online sites. Often, a well-chosen, budget-friendly light fixture can have the same impact as an expensive one.
By making decisions on your budget and priorities up-front, focusing on high-impact areas, choosing classic materials, and getting creative with budget-friendly options, you can create a luxurious home that reflects your style within your budget.
Ultimately, luxury is subjective. What feels luxurious to one person might not be to another. It’s about tailoring your home to your definition of comfort, beauty, and indulgence. Whether it’s a crackling fireplace in a cozy reading nook, a private balcony overlooking a city skyline, or a spa-like bathroom with a soaking tub and heated towel racks, focus on creating spaces that truly pamper your senses and bring you joy every day.

May 2023

Increase Your Home’s Value with these Remodeling Projects
Tiny ceramic houses on increasingly taller stacks of coins to represent increase in home's value

Updating and modernizing your home can make it more comfortable and functional for your family and more appealing to potential buyers, positively impacting the selling price.

It’s essential to remember that not all remodeling projects will have the same impact on property value. Some projects may provide a higher return on investment than others. That’s why it’s important to consider which projects to tackle carefully and to work with a professional who can help guide you through the process.

If you’re considering remodeling to increase your home’s value but aren’t sure where to start, this list is for you. These seven home remodeling ideas are sure to boost your property value.

Kitchen renovation with a large island and a farmhouse sink
1. Kitchen Renovations

Kitchen renovations are one of the most popular and effective ways to boost property value, and there are many options to consider. Upgrading appliances, cabinets, countertops, and backsplashes can all make a significant impact.

If you have the space, add an island, which can serve as a functional workspace and a gathering spot for family and friends.

Upgraded bathroom remodel with lots of windows for natural light, a freestanding tub and dark tile flooring
2. Bathroom Upgrades

Bathrooms are another area where remodeling can increase your home’s property value. Updating fixtures, installing new flooring, and replacing old vanities can all make a big difference. You may also consider adding a new shower, tub, or luxurious spa-like bathroom.

Outdoor living space with a large stacked-stone fireplace and peaked roof
3. Adding a Deck or Patio
Outdoor living spaces are popular, especially in places like the Bay Area. Decks and patios provide beautiful and functional spaces for entertaining, relaxing, and enjoying the great outdoors.

The nice thing about outdoor spaces is that there is a project to match every budget. You may want to opt for a simple and functional design, or you may want to go all out with a luxurious outdoor kitchen and dining area.

4. Updating Flooring
Flooring and wall finishes might be the most underrated projects for increasing a home’s value. Updating old carpeting, installing hardwood floors, or adding tile can instantly update the look and feel of your home.

5. Energy-Efficient Upgrades
Nothing increases a home’s value, like decreasing the cost required to run it. Upgrading your windows, adding insulation, and installing a new HVAC system can all make a big difference in your energy bills and your home’s comfort. Solar panels will not make your home more efficient, but they are a great way to decrease energy costs.

Attic addition with only the drywall finished and scaffolding around
6. Additions

Whether you opt for a finished basement or a new addition, adding more space to your home can make it more functional and appealing to potential buyers. With additions, it’s all about what you need and complements your home’s style and proportions. If you have young children, you may want to consider adding a family room or playroom. If you’re empty nesters, you may want to create a luxurious master suite or a home office.

7. Enhancing Curb Appeal

The front entrance creates the first impression of your home, and changes in this area can boost a home’s overall value. Adding a new front door or a fresh coat of paint to your existing door, updating the light fixtures, and adding planters can create a fresh, welcoming look to your home. More expensive changes, such as adding siding or new trim, repainting the whole house, and redoing the landscaping, may be worth the expense if your home is outdated relative to other houses in your area.

Whether you are considering a kitchen renovation, bathroom upgrade, or outdoor living space changes, there are a variety of ways to increase the value of your property. Contact us today to schedule a consultation, and we can help you weigh the cost/benefit of the projects you want to undertake.


April 2023


Transform Your Space with Creative Kitchen Remodeling Ideas

If you want to transform your kitchen into a functional and stylish space, you’ve come to the right place. With these kitchen remodeling ideas, you can elevate your kitchen design for a completely new kitchen or update one or more areas in your existing kitchen.

Upgraded Countertops

Upgrading your countertops is one of the easiest ways to give your kitchen a fresh look. Not only will this improve the functionality of your space, but it will also create a polished, cohesive look. There are a variety of materials to choose from, including granite, marble, quartz, or porcelain.

When choosing a material, consider the durability and maintenance required. Granite and marble are known for their natural beauty but require sealing to prevent stains. Quartz and a newer option, porcelain slabs, are low-maintenance options resistant to scratches and stains.

Top Design Trends for 2023
Repaint your Cabinetry

One way to make a dramatic change in the look of your kitchen is to change the color of your cabinets. While you can attempt to repaint your cabinets yourself, you’ll be happier with the results if you hire a professional painting company. Thoroughly cleaning your cabinets to remove grease and dirt, removing all the doors and hardware, filling any nicks and dings, sanding — sometimes multiple times—masking off the inside of the cabinets, and then setting up a dust-free booth to spray on the new finish is best left to the professionals. Consider your existing backsplash and flooring when you select the new color. Dark blue, black, muted neutrals, and timeless white are popular now. Changing the hardware to a modern profile will also give your cabinets a fresh appearance. Painting the kitchen walls are also a good option.

Unique Lighting Fixtures
Lighting can significantly impact the overall look and feel of your kitchen. Consider adding unique lighting fixtures to create a focal point and add visual interest. Pendant lights and other hanging fixtures, such as bar lights, are fashionable for over islands or dining tables, while chandeliers add a touch of glamour to the room. When choosing lighting fixtures, consider the style and finish. Do you want a modern, industrial look or a more traditional feel? And remember the size and placement of the fixture. Ensure it fits the room’s scale and provides adequate lighting. Consider installing a dimmer switch for versatility to dim the lights when you want to entertain or relax with a midnight snack.

Consider a “Countersplash”

A trendy backsplash seemed like a great way to add personality and flair to your kitchen at one time. However, backsplash fads change every two years. We often fall in love with them because it is human nature to love the NEW. When we see a trend on social media, in magazines, or showrooms, we think we want to have that too –until the trend changes AGAIN. Our advice on any hard surface is to keep them quiet. What may seem boring now – subway tile or marble in a neutral color – is timeless. One trend that will probably stand the test of time is a Countersplash –where the countertop material is continued onto the backsplash. Using the same material on both surfaces creates a sense of continuity and depth and makes cleaning easy. If you choose this option, make sure the pattern is classic marble or quartz in a neutral color- white and cream are best.

If you’re overwhelmed by all the choices, we can help you choose the styles and materials that fit your budget and vision for your space – and stand the test of time. Contact us today to schedule a consultation to transform your kitchen.

March 2023

What’s New in the Kitchen?

Kitchen trends change quickly, and it can be hard to keep up! We don’t recommend completely remodeling your kitchen every time a trend changes. But if you’re curious about what the latest kitchen trends are, we’ve got you covered.

Let’s look at some of the new trends taking over in the kitchen.

Top Design Trends for 2023
Timeless With a Splash of Trendy

Many homeowners are choosing to combine timeless bases in their kitchens with trendy pieces. This could look like installing timeless oak cabinets and pairing them with trendy big, gold door pulls and a brightly colored glass tile backsplash. Door pulls and backsplashes are relatively easy to change out if you are the type who likes to redecorate every couple of years.

Natural Stone Slabs
Beautiful, natural stone slabs have been popular as kitchen countertops for a while. They are now dominating backsplashes from the countertop to the ceiling, cascading to the floor in waterfall edges and wrapping around islands. Natural stone is unique and beautiful and enhances these spaces as the basic neutrals they replace never could. We especially love using natural stone on the kitchen island with a waterfall edge. The waterfall edge wraps the granite or marble over the edge of the island to the floor – making your kitchen look incredibly modern.

Cabinets Are for More than Just Dishes
Nobody wants to see microwaves or coffee makers anymore. Instead, installing floor-to-ceiling cabinets that hide small appliances is on trend. While these cabinets reduce your visible counter space, you aren’t losing usable space.

Bold Colors and Accessories

Move over all-white kitchens! Kitchens with bold colors are becoming more popular. Dark blue or green cabinets with a complementary backsplash are trending right now. Repainting your island in a bold color can be a way to update your kitchen without remodeling the whole room. Hardware, plumbing fixtures, and artwork used in kitchens are getting bigger and brighter. Black and gold finishes are currently popular choices. However, we offer a caution — gold and black have not proven to be durable finishes for fixtures in heavily-used often wet areas like kitchens and bathrooms — and we recommend you select chrome or stainless finishes in these areas.

Secondary Kitchen Spaces

Secondary kitchens, also called prep kitchens or sculleries, are spaces next to the primary kitchen for prepping vegetables, cleaning and storing dishes and cookware, and doing messy kitchen work. If you need additional space in your kitchen, will love this trend.

An Impractical Trend

Lastly, there is a new kitchen trend that we do not believe will last – removing the highly functional kitchen island in place of a large dining table or something similar. Kitchen islands have been popular for well over a decade because they are so useful. Unsurprisingly, some people want to try something new, but we do not think this trend will last.

Does your kitchen need an update? We are here to help! Call us to discuss your wants and needs, and we will help you create a plan to give you the kitchen you dream of.

February 2023

Top Design Trends for 2023
It is a bittersweet situation. Your kids will soon leave home to start their own lives, and sad to think they won’t be under the same roof anymore.
If you need help figuring out what to do with these newly-vacated bedrooms, here are some ideas for using the extra space in your home.
Craft/Hobby Room
Painting, pottery, sewing, and crafting are all popular hobbies to take on once the kids are out of the house, and now you’ll have plenty of space to create your next project.
If the room you want to remodel has carpet installed, it’s a good idea to remove it in favor of something easier to clean. Water-resistant ceramic or porcelain tiles are excellent options and come in almost any color or pattern you can imagine.

Whatever hobby you choose, you will need bright, overhead lighting. Recessed lighting is a good option for a craft room; you can add as many lights as you think are necessary and include a dimmer to control the amount of light you need for each activity. You could also install a light/ceiling fan combination to help with temperature control and ventilation.

A long countertop with cabinets and shelves will help you keep your supplies in order and out of sight when not in use. We can help you design and install custom or modular cabinetry to meet your shelving and storage needs, and we work with companies such as Valet Custom Cabinets and Closets for larger projects.
Home Office
Remote work is here to stay. If your workspace consists of a laptop at your dining table, we can help you upgrade that; since you now have the space, turn it into a home office.

First, install a hardwood floor and paint the room a warm, soothing blue, gray, or peach. These colors have proven to boost creativity and reduce stress. You’ll also need desk space. This should have enough space to hold your computer, keyboard, and any files or paperwork you may need to reference throughout your day. Next, some built-in cabinets and shelves will help you stay organized and provide room for a printer, reference materials, and display space for photos.
Installing a skylight or oversized windows to optimize natural light will be a great mood booster during your workday and should not be overlooked.
Home Gym
Exercise is a great way to reduce stress and improve your mood. If having workout equipment nearby will help prompt your ability to get a workout in on busy days, turn a spare bedroom into a private workout spa.

Install rubberized flooring to reduce noise and impact from weights and equipment. You’ll also want full-length mirrors to check out your form. If you like music while working out, install a surround sound system and a TV for treadmill or exercise biking time. And make sure you include a place to stretch. If you have the space, you may even want to add a spa, steam room, or sauna to relax and revitalize at the end of the day.

What ideas do you have for home now that you’re an empty nester? Contact us to discuss how we can help transform the extra rooms in your home into functional and enjoyable spaces.

January 2023

Top Design Trends for 2023
If you’re embarking on a home renovation in the new year and planning your overall design scheme, you may have been surprised by the latest trends. The market is leaving all-white and greige spaces in 2022 and entering a more dramatic era, thank God.
Remember, your home doesn’t have to be “trendy.” It should be a reflection of what makes you feel comfortable. But, if you are interested in learning more about what is “in” for the new year, here are some top trends and ways to incorporate them into your home remodel.
Bring Nature into The Home

Creating spaces that bring the outdoors in has been a big trend for the last few years. This trend extends beyond adding plants and greenery to your décor. It also relates to the materials you use.

In the bathroom, it’s about pairing natural materials together to create a mismatched yet cohesive space. Using natural stone for your flooring and pebble tile in your shower will create a calming space – add a rain shower to make it feel even more peaceful. Natural light is also essential, so consider adding a large window or skylight to your design. Finish off the trend with a natural wood vanity, and your bathroom will be an up-to-date, spa-like oasis.

Mid-Century Modern
A more surprising color trend we are seeing is the use of pastels in the home. You have to be careful with how and where you incorporate them into your design, so your room doesn’t end up looking like a baby’s nursery.

With the proper execution, pastels will create a tranquil yet interesting space. One great place to add pastels is to your bathroom. Pastel-colored geometric tiled floors will add a ton of character to a bathroom space without being too “loud.”

You could also use pastel tiles in the shower. We like glass mosaics in light pink or soft seafoam greens. This will give your shower a lovely, elegant look.

Dark and Dramatic

Design trends suggest that stark white kitchens are phasing out. Dark spaces with abundant natural light are a new and very different trend. This translates into hardwood or concrete floors and dark cabinets– think navy blue, green, or black, paired with wood or dark stone countertops. The wall color should match the cabinets. We know this is a significant difference from recent popular kitchen designs. But, if this look appeals to you, it can be amazing – as long as your design emphasizes natural light to offset the dark finishes.

What do you think about the 2023 trends? Do they sound like something you could see in your home? Regardless of the trends, the essential criteria in your design choices are that they make your home comfortable, functional, and one you love.

Please contact us if you’re planning a remodel in the new year. Whether you’re interested in a new trend or have something else in mind, we can help you make the best choices for you and your home.

November 2022
Fireplace Ideas to Add Style to Your Home
The closet used to be a place to hang your clothes; now, closets are evolving into so much more. Today’s walk-in closet looks more like a trendy boutique than a closet. This space should be clean and well-lit and make you feel calm, especially as you start (or end) your day.

Need some help figuring out what to include in a luxury master closet? Here are some must-haves:

Dressing Area
To make getting dressed easier, you need to have a designated space in your closet to put on clothes. You’ll need full-length mirrors to check your look from all angles, and ideal if you can create room for a three-way mirror.

Your dressing area should also have seating – a bench, at the very least – so you’ll be able to comfortably put on shoes or sit and sip some coffee while you ponder today’s outfit choices.

Credit: Space Savers
Customizing Your Closet
Designing and building your closet means including cabinets and shelving unique to your needs and your wardrobe. If you want everything kept out of sight, built-in cabinets with doors and drawers will be essential. High-quality cabinets can be the puzzle piece that transforms a regular closet into a luxurious space in your home.

For many people, viewing their clothing helps them decide what to wear. We can create open-concept storage with specific areas for items such as shoes, handbags, jewelry, and accessories. A closet with ample storage for all your clothing items is key to staying organized and having calm, stress-free mornings.
There are quite a few options for closet lighting, and using more than one type is optimal. You could use recessed lighting to light the room from above combined with LED strip lighting anywhere that could benefit from more light. Some examples could be clothing racks or shelves. You could also add a window or two to give the closet natural light and real-time information about the weather. A skylight could also be your solution to adding natural light, with the bonus that they do not take up closet wall space.

Lastly, a chandelier is a must-have in a luxurious closet for some people. A prominent hanging light fixture reflecting your style will be the finishing touch that brings your closet to life.

Credit: The delight of design
Coffee Bar
This may seem a bit extravagant, but having a coffee bar in your closet can be a game-changer – especially if you have a two-story home. You won’t have to walk down to the kitchen to start your day. Instead, you can brew coffee while deciding what outfit to wear.
Want to turn the closet of your dreams into a reality? Together we can design a closet that helps you get your day started calmy and helps you stay organized. Give us a call so we can get to work.

October 2022


Fireplace Ideas to Add Style to Your Home
It’s that time of year again. The weather is getting colder, and soon we’ll be spending more time indoors.
Whether you’re snuggled up watching a movie or wanting to add ambiance to your home, a fireplace provides cold-weather comfort. Fireplaces have been used for thousands of years, beginning in the Stone Age as simple dug-out holes; they became a necessity, serving as the home’s primary heat source and hub, and were relied on for cooking. In the 21st century, fireplaces still serve as a source of heat and continue to bring families together, yet have transitioned into more of a luxury in modern-day homes.
And from a design standpoint, there are plenty of ways you can make a statement with your fireplace that reflects your style and creates a focal point in any room. If you’d like to add a fireplace to your home or spruce up an existing one, here are some fireplace trends to inspire you.
A stone fireplace is an excellent option to add texture to a room. Stone fireplaces have been popular for years, and we don’t anticipate that changing anytime soon, especially since natural elements have been prevalent in-home design trends.
Pairing your stone fireplace with natural wood beams or a wood mantle is a great way to create a stunning focal point in your space. You could also use light stone, like travertine, in an all-white room to create a bright, luxurious space. Whatever you decide, a stone fireplace will be an excellent addition.
Tara Kantor
If you’re hoping to create a timeless, luxurious element in your home, a marble fireplace is a great way to do so. Marble comes in many colors and patterns and can work with most color palettes. For example, marble can be used against dark walls or built-ins to create a dramatic element in a study or great room.
Room Divider
Many homeowners are steering away from completely open spaces and finding ways to create defined living areas. One way to achieve this is by installing a room divider fireplace. These fireplaces are often installed between a dining area and a living room, but you can get creative and install them in other places, such as between a bedroom and a bathroom
Room divider fireplaces are also helpful in warming multiple areas of your home at the same time.
A newer trend in home design is the minimalist style. This style avoids intricate detailing and opts for clean, uncluttered lines. A minimalist-style fireplace blends into the room, focusing on the beauty of the flames instead of the decorative elements that often surround a fireplace.
Frameless fireplaces look best in homes with a modern, high-end style. They are an excellent addition to a living room or a bathroom as a surprise finishing touch.
Gas fireplaces are still the best option for California because you can be easily added to an existing space. However, like wood fireplaces, gas fireplaces (and cooktops and ranges) may be banned in the near future in California due to environmental concerns.
What type of fireplace would work best in your home? If you aren’t sure, we can help you decide. Give us a call so we can help you choose where your fireplace should go and what style would best compliment your home.

September 2022


Home trends are constantly changing. Regarding bathrooms, sleek spaces are on the way out, and more luxurious, intricately decorated spaces are becoming fashionable again.

If you’re planning a bathroom remodel, these are the most popular trends:

Wet Rooms
One of the newest trends in bathroom design is the wet room. A wet room is a space constructed with materials designed to get wet and often combines the shower and tub into one open and luxurious area—an excellent idea for those with limited space. Some wet rooms include a shower space and a freestanding tub in a glass enclosure separate from the sink and toilet areas.

We know what you’re thinking—doesn’t everything get wet? Don’t worry. Wet rooms have a sloped floor, so water will be guided to a drain and not get left standing on the floor. Since the space is more open and there are fewer nooks and crannies, they can be easier to clean. And many of the new trends are connected to universal design principles. Houzz reported that more than half of bathroom renovations are completed to address needs specific to groups like aging family members, young children, or people with disabilities.

Neutral Tones
Regarding bathroom color schemes, neutral, earthy tones are becoming more popular. Off-white or clay tiles in the shower space and wood accents are trendy, as are wood and natural tones. A clean white countertop, coupled with neutral tones, looks wonderful. To add an element of nature to the neutral bathroom, many homeowners include greenery into their design by including shelves or deep window sills on which to put potted plants, or for an over-the-top idea, simply opening their bathroom up to a private outside garden room.
Vintage Details
Ultra-modern bathrooms are giving way to more vintage details. Antique vanities with intricate detailing are popular, as are freestanding tubs. Both look elegant and interesting while being functional. Large, ornamental lighting is a must-have in the vintage bathroom. Brass chandeliers or large gold sconces next to a framed mirror make the space look vintage in the best way possible.
              AVALANA SIMPSON                                                                        ANNIE SCHLECHTER
Homeowners are also installing wallpaper with a vintage feel. Think bold floral patterns or a wallpaper featuring birds or butterflies. Lastly, vintage brass or jeweled hardware gives the perfect finishing touch to the vintage-style bathroom.
A Smarter Bathroom
Regardless of the style you choose, your remodeled bathroom needs some smart upgrades. Home technology has come a long way in the last few years, so while planning your bathroom remodel, make sure to include some of these upgraded features:

  • Touchless faucets – these are becoming common in the home
  • Voice-activated showers – you can turn on the water with a voice command and set the water temperature too
  • Self-cleaning and self-deodorizing toilets
  • Interactive LED mirrors that can display your email, traffic reports, the weather, or your smart home controls

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