Monday, June 25, 2012

Surprise Contender: Copper for Kitchen Countertops

By: Lisa Frederick (Courtesy of Houzz)

Unexpected and full of character, copper is getting buffed for its
growing appearance on the countertop scene.

If you're in the market for a kitchen makeover, you've probably spent hours debating countertop choices.  Granite or marble? Laminate or quartz? Soapstone or stainless steel? Just to add to your dilemma, here's one more player on the scene: copper. Although it's not as common as its countertop cousins, this timeless favorite is growing in popularity, and it's worth adding to your list of possibilities. Here's what you need to know.

The Pros of Copper

Ease of maintenance. It may sound surprising, but copper is relatively simple to clean. A mixture of lemon juice and salt will scour it well (be sure to rinse afterward), but you can also get by with warm water and a squirt of ordinary dish soap. Dry the surface thoroughly and wax or oil it periodically to keep it in the best possible shape.

Mellow patina. Considered a "living" surface, copper tarnishes as it oxidizes and reacts to the substances that cross it. For many, that's part of its appeal. Unsealed copper will gradually dull and transition to a blend of matte reds, browns and greens, which a lot of homeowners appreciate for the character it adds.

Germ resistance. Some — but not all — copper alloys have natural antimicrobial properties. The Environmental Protection Agency regulates this claim and requires manufacturers to register antimicrobial copper products, so check with the EPA if you want to ensure that your copper countertop (like these along the perimeter of this kitchen) will resist bacteria.

Green living.
Copper often can be salvaged from scrap yards or commercial applications, so it's popular with those committed to sustainable living.
Versatility. Copper is a chameleon — it can take on a variety of personalities to suit your space. It feels as appropriate in a modern townhouse or an industrial loft as it does in a traditional kitchen or a comfortable cottage.

The Cons of Copper

Discoloration. This is the flip side of the pretty patina that copper develops. If you're attached to the new-penny look of shiny copper, you'll have to be diligent about resealing. Check out examples of aged copper countertops to determine if or how much you'll still like them years down the road.

Dings and scratches. Because it's soft, copper is easily marred by knives and heavy pots and is susceptible to everyday wear and tear. Although these often can be buffed out, some people enjoy the sense of age that results. If you're really concerned about dents, opt for a hammered or otherwise distressed finish, which won't show them nearly as prominently.

At Cabinet-S-Top, helping you choose the right countertop
is one of our specialities. 
Stop by our showroom to see our selection. 
We are located at 1977 Medina Road, Medina, OH  44256

Monday, June 18, 2012

7 Kitchen Upgrades Worth the Money

By: Amara Holstein (Courtesy of Cultivate)

Tackling a kitchen renovation can feel overwhelming with the dizzying array of choices available. We’ve helped narrow down the options to some of our favorite kitchen innovations today—some of which are quite pricey, others less expensive—but all of which are great investments for your kitchen's future.

Modern Cabinet Interiors

Soft close doors, tray divider, cabinet rollouts, pull out spice rack
Though cabinet exteriors are usually the main attraction in any kitchen, it’s well worth it to invest in their insides too. The best extras? Our first recommendation is soft-close doors and drawers. The drawer glide construction is more durable, drawers don’t 'bounce back' when you close them, and there’s no more slamming of cabinet doors. Cabinets that speak to particular needs, such as tray dividers, spice racks, and recycling drawers, have major organization payoffs.  Photo by:

Touchless Faucets...At Home!

This innovation in residential design is turning heads in major health organizations, who praise its cleanliness and minimization of food contamination. Some faucets can be turned on by tapping anywhere on the spout or handles; other faucets have touchless technology that lets you wave a hand over a sensor to start the water flow. These faucets also provide ease of use for seniors, who may fumble with handles on traditional fixtures.
Photo by: Susan Serra, Designed by: Moen

A Cooktop Griddle

A cooktop griddle provides a larger surface for whipping up stacks of pancakes (and other foods) at once, while the flat edges make flipping easier. Available as a built-in option for pro ranges (36” and larger) as shown here, or as an addition you can buy and use on top of any range. We’re not quite as fond of the grill top option, though; they can be harder to clean and often result in a smoky kitchen.
Photo by: Bronson Pate of Bauman Photographers, Designed by: Andrea May Hunter Gatherer

Under-Counter Appliances
These conveniently placed appliances serve small spaces well, allowing fridges, wine storage, and freezer drawers to be installed compactly. Their trim sizes also leaves more room above—for cabinets, shelves, or simply for a bare, modern look. Plus, they allow for a kitchen tailored to your needs, whether you’d like to store a few bottles of wine or need an extra freezer for frozen summer berries, without having to commit to a full-size appliance.  Photo by: Lincoln Barbour,
Designed by: Kenton McSween Architect

A Steam Oven
You won't know how badly you need this new kitchen appliance until you have it. Cooking with steam is faster, easier, and healthier than cooking in a conventional oven (steam keeps moisture in food, so there’s no need to add much butter or oils). Now, built-in steam ovens even include convection technology for an all-in-one cooking appliance." The downside? Steam ovens are smaller than their conventional counterparts, so if you often make large roasts or have a big family, this might not work as your primary oven.
Photo by: Wilson-Wirth Design / Brent Haywood Photography
Designed by: Lisa Wilson-Wirth, CKD / Wilson-Wirth Design

Built-In Espresso Machine
If you feel like treating yourself to an early birthday present (this year and next), opt for a built-in espresso maker. The machines connect to the faucet, so you don’t have to refill water tanks or mess with unwieldy mechanisms, and it churns out espressos, cappuccinos, latt├ęs, and, of course, coffee in minutes. Sleek, sexy, and quietly streamlined, it's like having your own in-house coffee shop.
Photo by: Rick Lew Photography
Designed by: Chelsea Atelier Architect, PC

Counter Depth Refrigerators

Standard fridges extend about four inches past the edge of most countertops, looking bulky and incohesive. In contrast, counter depth fridges end flush with the countertop for the same look as a built-in fridge—and without a much higher price tag. Choose a model with an internal icemaker and water dispenser to keep the fridge front completely clear of any visual clutter. Photo by: Samsung

We realize that some of these upgrades can be a little pricey, but all of which are great investments for your future kitchen. At Cabinet-S-Top we can help you establish a budget, manage your budget and manage your wish list.  We want you to meet your budget while providing you with the essential items that will make you fall in love with your new kitchen.  Stop by and see us at 1977 Medina Road, Medina, OH ~ 330-239-3630.  You’ll be glad you did!

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

9 Ways to Create a Not-So-Standard Bathroom

By David Yuen (Courtesy of Houzz)

Make a small bath more interesting with color contrast,
natural light, bright tile, transparency and more

Sometimes it's hard to get inspiration for a potentially uninteresting 5' x 8' bathroom space, and there are good reasons for it. Once you install the sink basin, toilet and bathtub there is not much room for accessories, and most homeowners and builders tend to choose neutral tones and colors for finishes because they are thinking of the resale value. The results are bathrooms we don't want to spend much time in besides doing our daily routines. Here are some designs to spark ideas for your next bathroom.

1.    Create color contrast. This black-and-white scheme keeps the bathroom simple and uncluttered. The dark tiles on the floor grounds the space perfectly.

2. Add natural light in unexpected places. The small opening across the length of the shower provides light and movement as the sun travels through the day.

3.  Maximize transparency with a clear glass sink. The diagonally laid tiles and full-length mirror further enhance openness for this bathroom.

4. Use space above the toilet for open or closed storage. The red accent wall adds depth and a focal point.

5.    Consider dramatic tile. The lemon-lime tile and glass shower panel take the attention away from the small dimension of this bathroom.

6.    Play with scale. Large tiles along the back wall makes the bathroom appear longer. Give your bathtub a finished look by tiling the tub as well.
7.  Color flow. As in the previous bathroom, the floor material continues up to the tub, making a nearly-seamless transition.

8. Spa-like materials. This bathroom gets a spa feel with light and calming materials with a hint of color.

9. Install storage shelves wherever possible. These open units with the bamboo-like drawers are an elegant way to store toothbrushes and other toiletries.


Click here to received our FREE bath planning guide.  Let our certified designers help you make the right choices for your bathroom.  Give us a call (330-239-3630) or stop by our showroom to see our selection.  Cabinet-S-Top is located at 1977 Medina Road, Medina, OH 44256.

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Two-Tone Cabinet Finishes Double Kitchen Style

by Lisa Frederick (Courtesy of Houzz)
Love 'em or not, two-tone kitchen cabinet treatments are still going strong. Try these strategies to change up the look of your space.
I can't tell you how many articles I've read lately that proclaim, "The two-tone cabinet trend is dead!" If I may be the voice of dissent, mix-and-match kitchen cabinet finishes will be with us for a long time — and there's no reason to ditch them. After all, they've been around since the days when your average kitchen contained a worktable, some open shelves and a pie safe or two.

Done right, two-tone (or even three-tone) cabinetry can enhance a space in any number of different ways, from adding visual weight to introducing texture. Check out these approaches, each with a different purpose, but all with stunning results.
1. Create a brilliant focal point. A mannerly cream-colored kitchen comes to life with a rich red island — the star of the room. Besides drawing attention, it pulls the tones of the backsplash and the glass-front cabinet interiors into the room. Bright cabinetry usually works best against a neutral backdrop to avoid an eye-boggling color competition.

2. Ground an airy space.
This light, ethereal kitchen might appear to float away if it weren't for the bank of rich espresso-brown cabinets that anchors it. Limiting the palette to two neutral colors helps to maintain the serene vibe.

3. Pull the ceiling down.
Conversely, dark cabinets on top and lighter ones on the bottom can help to make a kitchen feel snug and cozy. A contrasting color is also a great method of highlighting handsome architecture, such as the four-pane design of the upper cabinetry in this space.

4. Bring the shine.
Glossy acrylic base cabinets add a sleek, reflective note to this streamlined kitchen. Their juxtaposition with the matte island and upper cabinets, as well as the honed flooring and island countertop, creates an appealing textural interplay.

5. Diversify a neutral palette. This kitchen could have been a study in brown, but the glazed peacock blue cabinetry gives it energy and a hit of sass. Introducing a dramatically different finish is easier and feels more natural when the cabinetry evokes the impression of freestanding units, like this hutch-style approach.

6. Pull the wall hue into the room. Lime green on the kitchen island echoes the paler shade of the walls for a graduated two-tone effect. The same technique also works well when you want to repeat a dominant or background color in tile or wallpaper.

7. Add a barely-there breath of color. Colors don't have to shout to boost visual panache. In this quiet, elegant kitchen, silvery gray on the island adds another nuance to the creamy whites and pale dove grays that cloak the rest of the space. It lends just enough presence without disturbing the peace.

8. Bridge floors and walls. Sometimes a contrasting cabinet finish can provide a visual transition between the wall treatment and the flooring. The warm cherry-tone lower cabinets in this classic kitchen extend the warmth of the brick underfoot and also create a buffer between the white units and the darker floor and backsplash materials.

At Cabinet-S-Top, we can help you create a two-tone cabinet treatment for your kitchen.  Stop by our showroom located at 1977 Medina Road, Medina to see our product line or give us a call to set up an appointment 330-239-3630.