Tag Archives: Efficient Lay Out

Simple.

Simplicity.  It’s something we hear in reference to many aspects of our lives.  But what does it mean for home design?  First, let’s discuss what it does not mean.  A common misconception is that simplicity is synonymous to boring, modern, cold, plain, or sterile.  Simplicity should not be confused with these descriptors.  So what does it mean?  Simplicity is timeless and unfussy.  It is effortless.  It puts emphasis on quality materials, functionality, and efficiency rather than ornate details and expansive floor plans.  How does one achieve simplicity?  Bartelt. The Remodeling Resource explores the “how” in this article.

Subtle InterestHartford Sunroom Addition

Although order and repetition can be used to achieve simplicity, there are many opportunities to add detail and character to a simple space.  Include “imperfect,” yet soft, elements such as distressed woodwork or hand-hewn beams.  Consider a monochromatic color scheme.  Create contrast with a mix of old and new items.  Add texture or pattern to your home.  Reclaimed materials, hand-scraped floors, honed countertops, a herringbone backsplash or floor, tin ceilings, brick – the options are endless to add charm and showcase your style in an understated manner.

Wauwatosa Master Bath RemodelNeutral and Natural

Cool neutrals, soothing earth tones, natural textures – simplicity is warm and adaptable to changing styles and trends.  Many homeowners opt for tone-on-tone grays, beiges, and off-whites.  For an organic feel, weathered wood, natural stone, and various metals are just a few ideas.  These elements can add a calmness to your space.

Restraint

“Have nothing in your house that you do not know to be useful or believe to be beautiful.”

-William Morris

This quote is a great example of simplicity.  For a simple, uncluttered space, homeowners need to learn how to “edit.”  They must choose what’s important to include and what is not necessary.  This is the “less is more” or “quality over quantity” idea we’ve discussed in the past.  Instead of a huge, open floor plan or elaborate design details, opt for efficient space planning and quiet elements.

ConnectionWauwatosa Sunroom Remodel

Simplicity and less “stuff” can connect you more to your surroundings by emphasizing natural light and showcasing views of your home’s backdrop.  It also focuses on establishing a better flow and seamless transition between the indoors and outdoors such as a sunroom with a patio door or accordion glass door that creates easy access to an outdoor entertaining space.

Timeless Design Part I

It’s a common question: how can we create a space that stands the test of time and looks like it has always been there?  A remodel is a big investment, so homeowners want to ensure that the space has a long “life span.”  You don’t want to look back 10 years from now and think, “That was so 2013.”

How can you achieve timeless design?  Bartelt answers that question in a three-part blog, discussing efficient layout, seamless transitions, and classic style.  Today, we’re focusing on your home’s floor plan.

Efficient Layout

Think about your lifestyle.

It’s important to understand how you use different rooms in your home.  Do you entertain frequently?  Are you a gourmet chef?  Do you have small children?  Questions like these affect the flow and specific details of each space.  If you entertain often, for instance, you may want a large island, wet bar, and direct connection from the kitchen to the family room.  If you enjoy cooking, that may dictate the placement of your cooktop in relation to prep areas.

You should also identify what is and is not working for you in your home.  Are there rooms that are rarely or never used?  Do you have a cramped kitchen and an oversized dining room?

Evaluating your lifestyle and determining if your home complements it are the first steps in the remodeling process.

Create open, yet separate spaces.

“Open concept” is a term we hear frequently.  Eliminating walls, doors, and other barriers can accommodate better flow and make the space feel larger, but it’s essential not to merely create a big, open box.  Use arches, columns, French doors, shelves, beams, and other details to Colgate Kitchen Remodelcreate open, yet defined spaces.  It adds character to your home and still allows you to engage guests in the other room while you prep in the kitchen.

Consider functional rooms.

Unused rooms or “catchalls” are taking up valuable real estate in your home.  Make room for practical spaces, such as mudrooms, laundry Mequon Mudroom Remodelrooms, and home offices.  These spaces often serve as your family’s hub, offering organization and serving a specific purpose.  There are endless options to make these rooms work harder for your family – lockers, cubbies, closets, message boards, “drop zones,” benches, and beyond.

Maximize your storage.

There are many storage options available to keep your home organized and more functional.  Don’t waste any space!  Incorporate cabinetry that extends to the ceiling.  Consider organizational Spice Racksystems, such as Rev-A-Shelf, that offer pull-outs, racks, and dividers to make use of dead corners.  There are often empty pockets where you can seamlessly insert storage – on unused walls, in a kitchen island, under the stairs, even in narrow areas (i.e. cookie sheets or wine bottle storage).

When planning your storage, make sure to think about how you use various spaces.  You’ll want everything to have its place, to be within arm’s reach of where you’ll need it.  In the kitchen, you’ll probably want spices by the range, knife storage near the butcher block, and drawers with silverware dividers close to the sink and dishwasher.  In the mudroom, a coat closet, mail organization, and cubbies with hooks may be essential.Pull-Out Pantry

There are many other creative opportunities for storage and organization:

  • Butler’s pantries
  • Drawers built into banquette seating
  • Pot racks
  • Cookbook shelves
  • Pull-out pantries
  • Closets