The Remodeling Corner

Janet Cook

February is a great month to focus on what we love. Do you love your home? Does every room love you back? Designing a home that will look as fresh today as it will 10 years from now is a great investment in your own enjoyment, as well as a future return. Here are styles that have held their staying power over time:

White Kitchens have remained popular for decades. Rather than all white, use color or stained-wood cabinets for the kitchen island. When personalizing your style, keeping it calm and contemporary will make it more timeless. Simple shaker-style cabinet doors look classic. Choose a subtle backsplash and stainless-steel appliances. A kitchen remodeling design trend that is here to stay is leaving some wall space open, rather than using every inch for upper cabinets, even if it is only flanking the cookstove, to make the room seem larger and airier.

Hardworking Storage refers mostly to the kitchen, but you can never go wrong by adding smart storage solutions that make keeping organized a snap. Keep counter clutter to a minimum by having a cabinet at countertop depth to keep appliances tucked away. Everyone loves a walk-in pantry for bulk food, infrequently-used appliances, platters, holiday dishes, as well as an easy way to see what you need to restock. There are more choices with kitchen drawers to store dishes, pots, and pans, as well as roll-out shelves to make things easily accessible. Have a designer help maximize your storage space in your laundry room and closet, too!

Traditional Style Bathrooms will stay popular, as long as they are relaxing, elegant, and spa-like. The use of marble quartz, including in the shower to eliminate grout lines, are easier to maintain. The added touch of warm floors is becoming a standard for luxury. When remodeling, it is cost effective to incorporate our changing physical needs at the time, rather than having to retrofit later. Include a hand-held shower, grab bars, bench shower seating, a curbless shower, and wider doors.

Good Lighting elevates mood, makes a space seem larger, warm, and inviting, as well as facilitates safely doing tasks. Layer kitchens and bathrooms with lighting. Flood the home with natural light by eliminating barriers such as walls or obscure glass in a shower.

Indoor-Outdoor living connects us with nature which is calming and health promoting. It extends the home by creating more usable space where you can cook, dine, relax, or entertain. Good design will make it inviting and easy to maintain.

Happy St. Valentine’s Day and happy I-love-my-home remodeling!

Janet Cook, Certified Aging in Place Specialist, President of Cook Remodeling (celebrating their 42nd year), invites you to check out their website for more ideas and photos. @