This is a sponsored post by Anna Gibson, owner of AKG Design Studio and an award-winning, certified kitchen and bathroom designer. AKG Design Studio is a boutique design firm specializing in kitchen, bathroom designs and cabinetry sales. Contact her at 571-989-2541 or [email protected], and check out her work on Houzz, Pinterest, Twitter and Facebook.
Long before the dust takes over the house and the kitchen is down to bare wall, let’s talk about to how to prepare for the design process. Making your kitchen pretty is great but making you kitchen functional is also really important.
Here is a seven step plan to help you get the most out of your time with your designer and get the results you want:
1. Collect — When you make up your mind that it’s time to start thinking about a remodel, then that is also a good time to start collecting ideas. The internet makes this task much easier with sites such as Houzz and Pinterest. You can create idea books that you can later share with your designer, and even other family members can chime in and add their ideas, as well. Make sure to note on each photo what you liked about it and why you saved it. After 50 photos of kitchens, you forget.
2. Lists — Make an inventory list of what’s in your kitchen — especially appliances, dishes you want to display, how many sets of silverware you have. All this will become handy information for the designer and for you to make sure everything will fit into the new kitchen.
3. Give it time — In your “time” budget, leave plenty time for planning. Kitchens are not just cabinets and counter tops, there are plenty of other things to consider, discuss and brainstorm about. Before I even meet with customers I ask them to fill out a questionnaire about their lifestyle and kitchen function so I can understand their needs better. There will be a few meetings with the design to review the different layout options and selections, this time can stretch between 3-6 weeks of planning time, before anything is even ordered.
4. The big picture — Before we dive into the little details, we need to see what can be done with the space and what the customer wants to accomplish with the remodel. Is it just a face lift or a full restructure of the kitchen layout? Do you want more space for baking or to seat people in an island? Ask yourself why you are remodeling the kitchen and let the designer come up with few possible layouts to solve those dilemmas.
5. Dream big — Make a wish list as long as the moon and toss everything in it. You never know what your designer will be able to accommodate. Remember, just like with your contractor, it is important to communicate all your needs and wants with your designer. We can’t give you your dream kitchen if you don’t tell us what you want.
6. Trim it down — After you made your dream list, it is time to come back to earth and see what will work in your kitchen. This will be the designer’s job. Your part will be to make a must-have list for the kitchen, setting priorities. Are you going to use this $800 warming drawer or end up using it to store cutting boards? Or will you bake enough to have the fancy (yet super functional) KitchenAid pullout.
7. Using the kitchen — After the designer submits the final big-picture drawing, it’s time to nail down that must-have list and see how it will all work. Review the design, mark what each cabinet is intended for and make sure that grandma’s old casserole dish has the perfect spot and the kids can get to the snacks without bumping into you. Think of which accessories you need and which will be luxury (those costs add up quickly).
Here are a few additional resources that can help you plan for your remodel:
Would like to meet the team behind AKG Design Studio?
Please join us Nov 13 for a private shopping event and a chef demo at William-Sonoma.
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