Southern Charm

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A Practical Kitchen with a Great Design

HardingWhen people hear “practical” they tend to translate that to “boring” but the two do not have to go hand-in-hand.

Each home and homeowner is different, so a “one size fits all” approach to kitchen design is not the way to go.

When remodeling, work with a qualified, designer and contractor to determine the best way to renovate your kitchen to work within your budget and accommodate your lifestyle needs.

A well-executed workflow in the kitchen with a great aesthetic can make the kitchen the best place to be in your entire home. Here are a few ideas for a beautiful and practical kitchen:

  1. The work triangle.  Professional kitchen designers know the best way to maximize space and design workflow is through “the triangle”. The triangle is the area between the refrigerator, the prep/cook area and the sink.
  2. Wide aisles. Newer kitchens allow for families. 4-foot wide aisles mean there’s room for parents and kids to pass each other “in the aisle.”
  3. Laundry in the kitchen. The kitchen is the heart of the home. It’s where families, cook, dine, watch TV, do homework, entertain, and, yes, do laundry. Hidden alcoves and extended pantry areas with room for laundry means greater functionality and less time travelling between rooms to get the housework done.
  4. The multifunctional kitchen range hood. The cooktop and range are a vital part of the kitchen.  The right range hood will not only help improve air quality in your kitchen by eliminating smoke, grease and odors it can also add light to your cooktop to make cooking easier. Some high end range hoods from companies like Rangecraft are not only functional but are so well designed they become an artistic focal point in your new kitchen.

The design team at RangeCraft is always available to talk with you about your kitchen project – large or small. We’ll help you make sure you add your own personal touches to make your kitchen unique and truly your own. Call us at 877-RCHOODS or 201 791-0440 or get some inspiration from our website at rangecraft.com.

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New Year’s Resolution: Organize My Kitchen

pot-rail-rangecraftWe all do it: make New Year’s resolutions. Lose weight, exercise more and organize my home.

This year, how about making a New Year’s resolution to organize your kitchen? The kitchen is a great place to start when organizing your home as you spend so much time there.

Here are a few tips to keep your kitchen organized and free of clutter:

Fix the pantry. It’s easy to feel overwhelmed and disorganized when you open the pantry door and you’re greeted by lots of boxes, bags and cans. It can be hard to see what’s on the back of any of your pantry shelves. Consider using clear acrylic containers to store cereal, crackers and snacks. You can easily see what’s inside and how much is left. It even makes the weekly shopping list easier.

Baskets and containers. Attractive baskets and containers can help store all the less frequently used items in your kitchen, like small appliances and special dishes. When you purchase multiple containers that match, your kitchen will look much less cluttered and disorganized.

Utilize doors.  Use metal bins on the backs of your kitchen doors. You can line up two to three bins and create a deep holding space for lots of different items, including those big bags of chips that don’t really stand upright on a shelf.

Use pot rails. Drawer space is usually at a premium in most kitchens. Use the space above your kitchen range for decoratively displaying pots, pans and even large cooking utensils. Save your kitchen drawers for items no one really wants to see like pens, scrap paper and tape dispensers.

Any of RangeCraft’s custom-designed metal range hoods are available with pot rails to maximize storage space and get large pots and pans out from under the cabinets to directly above the cook top.

RangeCraft’s made to order hoods are available in over 25 product categories in a variety of shapes and sizes in copper, brass, stainless steel and decorator colors.  Our range hoods are not only functional but they are an artistic focal point in your kitchen.

Visit www.rangecraft.com today or call us at 877-RCHOODS or 201 791-0440 for more kitchen design ideas.

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The Holiday Kitchen

holiday-kitchenWith the holidays upon us, you’re probably hauling out seasonal decorations from their storage area in the attic or the garage. Decorating helps gets us in the mood for the holidays and is one of our best ways to celebrate and enjoy the season.

While you’re decorating the exterior and interior of the home, don’t overlook the kitchen. After all, it’s only natural to decorate one of the rooms where you and your family will spend a majority of your time this holiday season.

Whether you’re entertaining a crowd during the holidays, or just sharing and spending time with immediate family, here are some tips to create a decorative theme in the kitchen:

Pick a color scheme.  There’s typically a lot going on in the kitchen, so when it comes to color, sometimes less is more.  Choose a single color scheme: gold, red or green and work within those shades. Look for decorations that work in the kitchen as well as other areas and don’t forget the powder room.

Bring on the accessories.  There’s no end to the choices of holiday-themed accessories available online and in stores. Choose a few that will stand out, then add special touches, like holiday-themed dish towels, glass and dishware and don’t forget candles to set the mood.

Scents of the season.  Few things are more inviting than walking into a home or a room and inhaling a pleasant aroma. There are many scents that invoke the spirit of the holidays: pies baking, a fresh cut tree or a cinnamon.  If you’re not cooking or baking, try scented candles, aroma sticks or potpourri.

Of course, the holidays involve a lot of cooking. Smoke, grease and odors generated by that cooking can overpower your kitchen. An efficient kitchen range hood can dramatically help reduce the heat, smoke and odors caused by cooking.

The quiet yet powerful motors of RangeCraft’s range hoods can keep the air clean in your kitchen. A quality ventilation system also leads to a cleaner kitchen, as grease particles and smoke are removed from the air, instead of settling on appliances, countertops and cabinets. The quiet fans of RangeCraft’s hoods work so efficiently they’re no louder than the hum of a refrigerator.

Not only are Rangecraft’s range hoods super efficient at improving air quality in your kitchen they are also beautiful works of art that often become a talking point for your holiday guests.

To learn more about RangeCraft kitchen hoods, visit www.rangecraft.com or call us at 877-RCHOODS or 201 791-0440 and speak to one of our kitchen design experts.

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A Black & White Choice

HardingStyles evolve but the appeal of a black and white kitchen never dies. It’s all about contrast. Black juxtaposes white and no matter how much, or how little, of either color you decide to use, you can almost never get the look wrong.

Here are some ways of designing and decorating with black and white:

Wallpaper: Wallpaper can be the simplest way to add drama and dimension to a kitchen. Instead of white walls try some unique wallpaper and make a design statement, for example check out Mughal Leaf from Schumacher Wallcoverings or Rose Beds by Graham and Brown.

Paint: it may seem daunting to use black paint but if done well it looks amazing. Not ready for black walls? Try a black ceiling. If your ceilings are high enough and there’s a lot of natural light coming into the room, a black ceiling can be dramatic yet understated. Take a look at Knight by Jeff Lewis Colors–it’s in the brown family but looks black.

Cabinets: Sometimes black cabinets are all you need to make a statement. Take a look at Wood Mode and KraftMaid for custom cabinetry in a black lacquer or matte finish.

Accessories: Black and white accessories are some of the easiest to find.  Decorative items and wall art in black and white are all simple yet effective ways to accent your kitchen. Try Ballard Designs for some black and white accessories for the kitchen.

Appliances: Of course all major appliances come in white but many refrigerators, dishwashers and ovens are available in black too. One way homeowners are bringing a centerpiece to their kitchen is with a high-end range hood. Companies like Rangecraft that make custom range hoods can match your range hood to your kitchen color palette and can add contrasting design elements like metal bands, rivets, rounded corners, and buttons that can really “dress up” a range hood and make it look like a work of art. Each Rangecraft range hoods is made, one at a time, by skilled artisans.

For more ideas on designing your kitchen in any color, visit RangeCraft at www.rangecraft.com or call 1-877-RC HOODS and speak to one of our kitchen design experts.

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Choosing a Contractor when Remodeling

Dearborn-1Thinking about a kitchen update? When you’re ready to remodel, you need to start off on the right foot. Hiring a contractor is the first – and maybe most important step – in the remodeling process.

You’ll be entrusting your home and kitchen to this contractor so you’ll want to make sure it’s someone that can do a great job. Here are a few tips for choosing the firm to do the job:

Ask for referrals: Everyone knows the best way to find good talent is through referrals. Word of mouth is definitely a reliable way to go. To enhance the referral process, have a list of at least three or four questions when calling a contractor’s former clients. Did the contractor show up on time? Did they give fair prices and detailed estimates? Were they neat and respectful of your home? Was the project completed on deadline and close to budget?

Look at credentials: Make sure the contractor is licensed and insured in your municipality and state. Look at your contractor’s certifications. Most contractors – and interior designers, too – will have completed coursework with a professional association, such as the National Kitchen & Bath Association or National Association of the Remodeling Industry.

Get all agreements and contracts in writing.  Make sure any written agreements include pricing and a payment schedule. Your agreement with your contractor should also outline the scope of work, a site plan and a change-order clause. You and your contractor need to be on the same page should situations arise or plans change.

In addition to all the structural changes you make in your new kitchen, you will want to consider updating your appliances. Up-to-date appliances can increase your home’s resale value and reduce your energy bills. One type of appliance that can help with energy use and increase your home’s value is a quality, custom-designed range hood.

RangeCraft hoods, for example, remove unwanted cooking smoke and vapors with powerful energy-efficient fans, keeping your bills down as well as the need to paint often. Offered in copper, brass, stainless steel or powder coated decorator colors, RangeCraft hoods are designed with exquisite detail, making them a great addition to your kitchen and your home. Visit www.rangecraft.com to learn more or call 1-877-RC HOODS and speak to one of our kitchen design experts.

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Choosing a Kitchen Style

Builder Show 2012 aOne way to narrow down how to decorate your kitchen is to identify your favorite design style.

There are many home design styles and you can develop your unique approach but if you want help getting started here are some of today’s most popular styles:

Country: A country design gives a home a feeling of being a cozy, lived in space. White wood paneling is typical and soft floral patterns are often used. Homeowners that decorate in this style often buy antique furniture pieces.

Coastal: A coastal design uses colors that are reminiscent of the beach, sand and sky. Such designs often use airy fabrics and feature beach-themed accessories such as seashells.

Mediterranean: A Mediterranean style includes a generous use of terra-cotta, stone and tile in neutral shades and blues and greens.

Art Deco: Art deco designs use geometric lines, mirrors and wood, typically with chrome hardware and a generous use of glass.

Modern: A modern style emphasizes shapes and lines. Modern styles use a lot of neutral with a strategic use of brighter colors. Modern designs use strong geometric shapes and focus on a careful use of light and space.

When it comes to applying your chosen design style to your kitchen you can get more specific ideas by scanning magazines, watching design shows and working with interior designers. One of the areas you will need to spend time on will be finding appliances that integrate seamlessly with your design. Keep these factors in mind:

Refrigerators: There are refrigerators available to match any design style with a multitude of configurations and price ranges. The three main configurations are side-by-side, top-mounted freezer and bottom-mounted freezer.

Cooktops: Decide if you prefer cooking with gas or electric. Cooktops now come with grill grates, warming trays, and multiple burners.

Range hoods: When choosing a range hood, remember that the kitchen is the number one source of indoor air pollution. Be sure the hood you choose is powerful enough to capture smoke, odors, grease and heat generated from cooking.

Firms like RangeCraft make customized kitchen range hoods to match any style of kitchen. So whether you choose country, coastal, Mediterranean, art deco or modern you can have your range hood match your design perfectly.

For more ideas on designing your kitchen in any style, visit RangeCraft at www.rangecraft.com or call 1-877-RC HOODS and speak to one of our kitchen design experts.

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Kitchen Storage Ideas

hood-pot-railWhere do you store your pots, pans and frequently used utensils?

Is everything stashed away in a cabinet or drawer that is too small for all the equipment, making it hard to find? Do you wish that all your favorite cooking tools were more readily at-hand?

Why not consider a decorative backsplash rail or pot rack?

A simple backsplash rail can work well in almost any area between cabinets and countertops. Easy to install and convenient to use, a backsplash rail is perfect for holding the items you use frequently and want to display. Utensils, decorative towels or linens, and even dried herbs can be displayed and used frequently with a backsplash rail.

If keeping pots and pans within reach is important, the pot rack is an ideal way to use conveniently placed hooks to hold them.  For the avid cook looking to keep favorite cookware within reach, a pot rack helps utilize space efficiently in the kitchen.

A great alternative to installing a pot rack in your kitchen is having a pot rail built into your kitchen range hood. Any of RangeCraft’s custom-designed metal range hoods are available with pot rails to maximize storage space and get large pots and pans out from under the cabinets to directly above the cook top, where you need them.

RangeCraft’s made to order hoods are available in over 25 product categories in a variety of shapes and sizes in copper, brass, stainless steel and decorator colors.  Our range hoods are not only functional but they are an artistic focal point in your kitchen.

Visit www.rangecraft.com today or call us at 877-RCHOODS or 201 791-0440 for more kitchen design ideas.

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Kitchen Inspiration

Builder Show 2012 aWhere do you find your best decorating ideas? Is it looking through magazines? Browsing in bookstores?  Maybe talking to friends or watching home decorating shows?

If you said you get your ideas from television, you’re in good company. 42% of home renovators credit television shows as their inspiration for their home renovation projects. There are lots of shows on the DIY network, like Kitchen Cousins, Renovation Realities and Kitchen Renovations, that allow us to sit back, eat popcorn and watch someone else do all the work in 30 minutes or less.

It’s important to make sure your kitchen is a reflection of your own personal style. Whether you’re an avid cook or too busy for anything other than take-out, the kitchen remains the central hub and heartbeat of your home. Updating, redecorating and keeping the kitchen a place where you and your family enjoy spending time is never a waste of time or money.

To help find and keep ideas, try looking through various sources of inspiration:

Keep a scrapbook or file. Thumbing through magazines and clipping pictures, even if it’s just a color that catches your eye, is a great way to keep ideas that inspire.

Consult designers. Designers are always on top of the latest trends. Ask designers for their input, even if you’re just doing small projects yourself. Most designers will talk with you about ideas in the hopes of building future relationships.

Search online. Decorating and design websites, blogs and video of home renovation projects help keep you current and aware of what’s out there.

The design team at RangeCraft is always available to talk with you about your kitchen project – large or small. Wherever you draw your inspiration for design and decorating, we’ll help you make sure you add your own personal touches to make your kitchen unique and truly your own. Call us at 877-RCHOODS or 201 791-0440 or get some inspiration from our website at rangecraft.com.

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We Love Our Customers

rococoHow many times have you dealt with a company and ended up frustrated by their customer service? Have you ever purchased an item only to find out later its quality was poor? Or been disappointed by the design of a product you bought?

All too often today, customers are left feeling underwhelmed by a business’s dedication to its customers. At RangeCraft, it’s our mission to change that.  Since our inception, our number one priority has always been our customers.

We don’t believe in limitations and rarely use the word “no.” Our reputation is built on quality craftsmanship, attention to detail and exemplary service. What makes us different?  Whether working with a homeowner, kitchen designer, builder or kitchen contractor, we manufacturer each range hood one at a time.

“We work hard to listen to our customer’s needs,” says Ramona Panus, president of RangeCraft.  “Our ‘top of the line’ reputation is what sets us apart from the competition, we maintain our standard of excellence with state of the art production machinery to insure the finest quality and selection of range hoods and universal inserts for kitchen ventilation.”

But don’t just take our word for it. Take a look at what these customers have to say about their custom-made RangeCraft hood: http://www.rangecraft.com/Testimonials.htm

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