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Hi!

Welcome to my blog. As an interior designer, design is in my blood. Design affects how we live, how we function. It can have a profound effect on our happiness and productivity.  I wish to inspire you with my stories about great, good and not so good design. About exteriors and interiors. About colours and art. In short, the things that we surround ourselves with. 

The Six Basic Elements of A Kitchen Renovation

The Six Basic Elements of A Kitchen Renovation

Would you agree that the above kitchen badly needs attention? It is crying out for a major renovation I think! Even my Mom’s kitchen did not look this outdated or old-fashioned…

A kitchen renovation is a huge undertaking for any homeowner.  And, if you have a limited budget it can become an even bigger mountain of difficult things to overcome. Let’s face it, if you have lots of money you can hire a kitchen designer and have that person do all the work for you. But, the reality is that most people do not have the money for a designer. Their budget is already stretched to the limit. Or they would rather spend their money on some new purchases for their kitchen rather than on design fees.

North Vancouver Kitchen Renovation by Sophistique Interior Design (my own firm). This renovation made a tiny boxed-in kitchen dating back to the sixties, into a large open one. To the right of the island and sink wall with the huge bank of windows is a dining nook and a plenty of floor-to-ceiling storage cabinets. This house also has a formal dining room off to the left of this kitchen. This renovation is timeless and will last for decades. It took place in 2008 and it still looks current!

North Vancouver Kitchen Renovation by Sophistique Interior Design (my own firm). This renovation made a tiny boxed-in kitchen dating back to the sixties, into a large open one. To the right of the island and sink wall with the huge bank of windows is a dining nook and a plenty of floor-to-ceiling storage cabinets. This house also has a formal dining room off to the left of this kitchen. This renovation is timeless and will last for decades. It took place in 2008 and it still looks current!

If this sounds like you than you are in the right place. My new series of blog posts highlights the steps to take when planning a kitchen renovation. The posts go into detail about what to look for, what to review, how to plan for your renovation step by step. I am bringing the ins and outs of my profession to you, the homeowner, in a way that you can make the knowledge your own. You become your own best designer!

What if you had all the steps for a renovation at your fingertips, would you feel more confident that you could tackle it on your own, or at least do a lot of work yourself with minimal input from a professional. This would save a lot of money wouldn’t it? It could also bring out a creative process you did not know you had, giving you further confidence to tackle additional home projects.

As a professional interior designer for over 25 years I have designed and renovated many kitchens, from small to large. From budget kitchens to luxurious state-of-the-art spaces. In essence, I follow a very defined process of collecting data and applying that data to create a design concept. And, you can too: whether your kitchen is small or large, whether you want to spend a limited amount of money or heaps of it, you can create your dream kitchen by following a sequence of basic steps and principles.

Vancouver Condo Kitchen Renovation by Sophistique Interior Design. With a lot of storage cabinetry on the north and west walls in this kitchen, we could leave the range wall more open and clean looking. A bit of fun!

Vancouver Condo Kitchen Renovation by Sophistique Interior Design. With a lot of storage cabinetry on the north and west walls in this kitchen, we could leave the range wall more open and clean looking. A bit of fun!

I was reading an article on houzz.com where the case was made for hiring a professional kitchen designer to make life easier for the homeowner. Of course, there are times when a professional is required but many times the homeowner can do it him/herself, if only they know exactly what to do. The article spoke about design fees for designing a kitchen and the typical rates were between $125-$150 in US dollars. This would amount easily to $3500-$5000 US for a custom design. And this is exactly the design fee I have charged in the past and would still charge in the future is a client wanted me to design their kitchen.

Would it not be wonderful if you could save this money and use it to buy a great dishwasher and oven? Or to purchase that wonderful range you wanted all along?

I have designed a step by step process for you to design your new kitchen. If you think about each step carefully, apply my recommendations I can guarantee you much better results for a kitchen renovation. Your renovation will move faster and smoother (after all you want to be without a kitchen for a short time as possible - it is one of the most important spaces of your home, if not the most important one!). You will make few or no mistakes at all.

You will save money! Who does not like that!

We start with the six basic elements you will need to review and think about before you do anything.

This kitchen design features built-in storage behind vertical granite panels on either side of the range. The panels slide behind the range backsplash revealing about 4” of shallow storage for herbs, cooking oils etc. Design by Sophistique Interior Design.

This kitchen design features built-in storage behind vertical granite panels on either side of the range. The panels slide behind the range backsplash revealing about 4” of shallow storage for herbs, cooking oils etc. Design by Sophistique Interior Design.

These elements are:

  1. Size or Square Footage

  2. Functionality

  3. Lifestyle

  4. Electrical, Plumbing & Mechanical

  5. Appliances

  6. Budget

I will guide you through the process I take my clients when they ask me to design and renovate a new kitchen. You will learn how to approach these critical elements of a kitchen renovation. You will learn to see aspects of design you probably would overlook and would not think of yourself. I will recommend when you need a professional to do some aspect of work you cannot do (think of making drawings for cabinetry manufacture).  You will end up with a plan and achievable timeline to work with. 

After going through a kitchen renovation planning process I will take you through other design processes related to your home: bathrooms, living rooms, dining rooms etc. You will learn how to create your dream home. Together we can make plans on what you want your dream home to look like. At the same time I will be opening your world to design from around the globe to get your creative juices flowing. And, while going through this process  you can ask me any design question you may have. 

Source: Pinterest. I like the rose coloured tone of the pendants in this kitchen. They stand out and at the same time reflect the wood island top. The Thonet style barstools finish the look quite wonderfully. All simple elements but with a huge amount of impact.

Source: Pinterest. I like the rose coloured tone of the pendants in this kitchen. They stand out and at the same time reflect the wood island top. The Thonet style barstools finish the look quite wonderfully. All simple elements but with a huge amount of impact.

Stay tuned for step one: The Six Basic Elements of Planning a Kitchen Renovation.

I invite you to share these posts with your family and friends or anyone you know who is thinking of planning and designing a major area in their home. I know my step by step guidance will help them! Subscribe to my blog and join me in this journey of design discovery.

Step 1 - How to Plan your Kitchen Renovation

Step 1 - How to Plan your Kitchen Renovation

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