Designing the Perfect Colorful Kitchen

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Designing the Perfect Colorful Kitchen

The joy of being an interior designer is getting the opportunity to push the design boundaries every once in a while. In doing some inspiration research for an upcoming kitchen design project, I began to notice the rarity of kitchens with really interesting color stories. I'm not necessarily criticizing the choices designers and homeowners have made, but we need more color in this world! 

And, like I do, I started pondering the idea of how best to design a kitchen filled with color in such a way that it could be changed as color preferences changed. So, I went searching for some perfect examples and came up with this simple list of ways to design your next kitchen with color for a real show-stopping design.  

Paint is your friend. Of course, the easiest way to bring color into your kitchen design is to use paint in smart ways. A neutral palette of surfaces and cabinetry is the perfect opportunity to go bold with colorful walls. The beauty of using paint for your splash of color is how you can always change it depending on color mood.

Fabric and decor adds the right amount of color in the right places. Similar to paint, decorative elements can also be the perfect way to bring color into a space. In the space below, a simple roman shade brings in a nice punch of color in this otherwise neutral space. Window treatments and upholstered barstools are great ways to bring in colorful fabrics. Consider too the connection with adjacent rooms. It will make all the difference in how the kitchen connects with the rest of the house.

Requiring slightly more devotion, go bold with your backsplash. In the grand scheme of things, a backsplash provides you a great design opportunity to be bold with your chosen color. And, if you want to switch it out down the road, it's only slightly more disruptive to change out. The key here, by the way, is to make the other surfaces relatively neutral.

Nothing screams devotion like cabinetry in a specific color. For the true color devotees, this is your chance to go bold or go home. While not as easy to change out down the road, putting a color on your cabinets makes the strongest statement. In the examples below, notice how smartly color is used. While bold, in their own certain ways, each room has a strong color story mixed with beautiful neutrals. The proportions are all balanced and the color doesn't over power the rooms. If you're going to paint your cabinetry, consider a subdued color, a white washed blue or lighter version of your favorite color. This keeps the room from feeling like a clown house. 

Depending on your level of devotion or propensity to risk taking, having a colorful kitchen isn't out of reach. I hope these examples of colorful kitchens have shown you how easy it can be without locking yourself into a color (unless that's what you want). Don't be afraid to use a little color in a bold way. And, if you need help navigating the design world, give JASON BALL interiors a call. We're glad to help.

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Before & After: New Laundry Room Layout for an Active Family

As a follow up to the Before & After entry from a couple of weeks ago, let's look at what happened in the laundry room of this project. As I mentioned before, this house is so typical of many suburban homes built in the 1980s and 1990s. And, when it comes to the laundry room, they clearly didn't have an interior designer help them with the space planning of the room. The standard layout was a large closet with bi-fold, louvered doors on one end, a small laundry room sink and the washer and dryer crammed into the other side. This really is the epitome of an inefficient use of space.

So, what if we get the chance to reconfigure the space for today's lifestyle? What layout changes make sense? And, how can we improve on the traditional, less than optimal layout? Well, let's use this one as a case study and look at the before picture to see what we were dealing with. A poorly designed storage area, an less than optimal laundry area had to be dealt with in a way to not only improved the space, but also was set up for an active family.

As you can see from the "after" picture below, we not only gave the family more functional spaces to work with, but also brought some great style into a room that is usually forgotten. A great two-tone herringbone tile floor, white quartz counters and clean white cabinetry make this a place anyone would want to spend some time working.

ABOUT JASON BALL interiors. Jason is an interior designer based in Portland, Oregon serving residential and commercial clients throughout Oregon and Washington, and beyond. To see examples of his design work, visit the Portfolio page. For an evaluation of your upcoming projects, contact Jason Ball at (503) 267-2352 or via e-mail at jason@jasonballinteriors.com.

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Before & After: Gray With A Splash Of Red

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Before & After: Gray With A Splash Of Red

The kitchen design world continues to love the idea of painted cabinetry. White, black, other cool colors and of course, gray. There is no better neutral than gray. It goes with nearly every color and is a perfect backdrop for any type of design - contemporary, traditional and so on. The trick is always how to get the combination just right.

When my clients first came to JBi with the concept for their kitchen, they knew they wanted gray cabinetry and some touch of red as an accent color. Our goal became to find a way to make the gray feel fresh and contemporary in this kitchen loaded with traditional touches. The extra large crown molding, flush inset cabinetry and furniture-like island all lend themselves toward a more traditional look. Throughout the design process, we looked for ways to tone down the traditional feel and bring the design into a beautifully updated kitchen filled with contemporary design elements. The changes throughout all improved the flow and function of the space, while providing a jump off point for the look of the rest of the home.

Take a look at our design challenges and how we addressed each of these to create a true showcase kitchen.

While the general layout of the kitchen didn't change that much, we did move some appliances around a little to help with the flow of the space. By moving the range to a side wall, we were able to design a beautiful cooking station with the proper ventilation (no more inefficient downdraft!). 

The real fun, however, came in finding ways to incorporate red into the overall look. We started by adding cabinets with glass doors on either side of the range with painted red interiors. The valance fabric has an artistic quality to it in reds and grays. Red accessories and a red stand mixer help complete the look. All-in-all, one stunning kitchen with all the right details in the right proportions. Here's the unfiltered picture for one last view and a detail shot of the amazing range.

ABOUT JASON BALL interiors. Jason is an interior designer based in Portland, Oregon serving residential and commercial clients throughout Oregon and Washington, and beyond. To see examples of his design work, visit the Portfolio page. For an evaluation of your upcoming projects, contact Jason Ball at (503) 267-2352 or via e-mail at jason@jasonballinteriors.com.

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JBi is a Repeat Winner!

Each year Houzz awards "Best of Houzz" awards in both customer service and design to the top 3% of building and design professionals. JASON BALL interiors is humbled by another year of receiving both the Design and Customer Service awards. Here is the full press release from Houzz. To see the JBi profile on Houzz, click on the badges at the bottom of this page or click here.

January 19, 2015

Houzz Announces “Best Of Houzz 2015” Winners

Annual Survey and Analysis of Community of Over 25 Million Monthly Users Reveals Top-Rated Home Remodeling Professionals and Design Trends

Houzz (www.houzz.com), the leading platform for home remodeling and design, today announced the community’s picks for Best Of Houzz 2015, a homeowner-to-homeowner guide to the top home buildersarchitectsinterior designers, landscape pros and other residential remodeling professionals on Houzz from tile, stone and countertop pros to painters.

“Houzz connects people with the best home professional for their project by providing the only 360-degree view of a professional, from their portfolio, client reviews, awards and accreditations to their work style and expertise based on their participation in the Houzz community,” said Liza Hausman, vice president of Industry Marketing for Houzz. “We’re delighted to join our community in recognizing the talented professionals on Houzz who are delivering incredible designs and delightful customer experiences.” 

The Best Of Houzz award is given in two categories: Customer Service and Design. Customer Service honors are determined by a variety of factors, including the number and quality of client reviews a professional received in 2014. Design award winners’ work was the most popular among the more than 25 million monthly users on Houzz, known as “Houzzers,” Winners will receive a “Best Of Houzz 2015” badge on their profiles, showing the Houzz community their commitment to excellence. These badges help homeowners identify popular and top-rated home professionals in every metro area on Houzz.  

About Houzz
Houzz is the leading platform for home remodeling and design, providing people with everything they need to improve their homes from start to finish - online or from a mobile device. From decorating a room to building a custom home, Houzz connects millions of homeowners, home design enthusiasts and home improvement professionals across the country and around the world. With the largest residential design database in the world and a vibrant community powered by social tools, Houzz is the easiest way for people to find inspiration, get advice, buy products and hire the professionals they need to help turn their ideas into reality. Headquartered in Palo Alto, CA, Houzz also has international offices in London, Berlin and Sydney. For more information, visit www.houzz.com

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Before & After: A True Cook's Kitchen With A French Flavor

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Before & After: A True Cook's Kitchen With A French Flavor

You've heard it once, you've heard it a million times - we love Before & After pictures. It gives interior designers an opportunity to show everyone what's possible in a space. This project is no exception - we implemented some huge changes in this kitchen and here's the story behind everything.

The Story. A wonderful couple approached JASON BALL interiors to help with a significant remodel of their custom home. Having built the home, raised a family, the couple is enjoying retired life far removed the bustling city (although they also love the city and get into Portland every chance they get). At the end of a long road, with views of the surrounding hills, the home's setting makes it worth fixing it up for the next chapter in their lives. While this entry focuses on the kitchen, we also completely finished out the basement with a large multi-use room (family room, workout area, bar, game table, wine storage), and completed the guest bathroom and bedroom. All in all, this was a huge project that resulted in some dramatic changes to the home (see the full project here).

As you can see from the before picture below, the home clearly reflects the style of the day in the 1990s. White tile counters, light wood cabinetry, an inefficient walk-in pantry, an electric cooktop in the island with nearly non-funtional downdraft vent system and so on. 

BEFORE

BEFORE

CHANGES MADE TO IMPROVE FLOW AND FUNCTION

CHANGES MADE TO IMPROVE FLOW AND FUNCTION

The design idea behind these changes were all to alter the layout of the kitchen to improve the way the kitchen functions. By taking out the walk-in pantry and replacing it with cabinetry, we improved the efficiency of that part of the kitchen. We were also able to put all food storage in one location (cold and dry storage together makes perfect sense). Having the cooktop in the island is almost always the least efficient location. For an ex professional chef and an avid home cook, the need for a high quality cooking appliance and proper ventilation was paramount for the remodel. The old location of the refrigerator created a block in the flow of the space and acted like a wall. There was no natural flow from the kitchen to the nearby eating area.

And now for the big reveal!

jason-ball-interiors-kitchen-design

Not only does the kitchen look larger because of the refrigerator move, but now this space is perfect for cooking, entertaining and is stylish to boot. We focused on designing and creating a French-inspired space. Marble counters and backsplash, a beautiful warm gray painted cabinetry and sandblasted white oak island and shelving bring new life to this kitchen. Because of their of antiques, I designed an island that had some age built into it and felt like a piece of furniture. Three stainless steel modern stools provide an interesting juxtaposition. Here are some additional shots of the space to show off the details.

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kitchen-design-by-jason-ball-interiors

I hope this has inspired you to look at your own space and evaluate it for improvements you might make in the flow and function. And, while we're at it, let's make it a spectacular space!

ABOUT JASON BALL interiors. Jason is an interior designer based in Portland, Oregon serving residential and commercial clients throughout Oregon and Washington and beyond. To see examples of his design work, visit the Portfolio page. For an evaluation of your upcoming projects, contact Jason Ball at (503) 267-2352 or via e-mail at jason@jasonballinteriors.com.

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