Design Tips

Monday, May 4, 2015


Rita O’Brien IDS, Rita O’Brien Design Group | photo by Jeff Garland
Rita O’Brien IDS, Rita O’Brien Design Group | photo by Jeff Garland

May is officially upon us, which means the weather is warmer, the flowers are blooming, and remodeling projects are getting underway. While it may seem a daunting task, remodeling can add function to your most used spaces and value to your home. Five top designers share their tips to help you get the most from your next remodeling project.

1. Plan Ahead
“Whether you’re looking to do a complete or a partial remodel, proper planning is key. First, determine what changes need to be made out of necessity and then look at changes that make sense for floor planning, product selections and permanent surfaces. Consulting a design professional at the start will help you decide what to keep and what must go. Getting these things in order from the very start will help keep you on-budget and can prevent later unexpected delays.” – Donna Brown NKBA, Dazzling Designs

2. Start with the Kitchen and Bathroom
“For most of us, our kitchens and bathrooms are the spaces we use the most, so why not invest those hard-earned remodeling dollars where it counts? Give your kitchen or bath an updated, fresh look simply by changing the countertops, backsplash, lighting, a faucet, paint colors or even cabinetry hardware. Often the simplest and easiest change can have the most impact!” – Sharon Kory, Sharon Kory Interiors

3. Work with Your Space
“Removing a wall is a great way to create a more livable space that is instantly brighter and more inviting, but that may not always be an option. Luckily, there are other things that can be done to help maximize your space. Open shelving, tucked-away seating, and mirrors are great ways to open up a room. Also, when dealing with narrow spaces, flooring with linear lines helps to elongate the space.” – Rita O’Brien IDS, Rita O’Brien Design Group

4. Recycle
“Not everything needs to be replaced when remodeling. In some cases cabinets can be reused with a new finish or paint, and furniture can be repurposed by simply reupholstering with a new fabric.” – Donna Brown NKBA, Dazzling Designs

5. Don’t overlook the Fireplace
“In a circa 1980s-'90s house we look to the fireplace for an easy update. They're often made of a dark, tired brick, or white painted trim. The fireplace can be refaced with stacked stone, a new mantel, and updated enclosure. We even turned a standard, rectangle-shaped fireplace opening into a fabulous linear shape, which really gave the room a nice update.” – Terry Ellis ASID NCIDQ, Room Service Interior Design

Using any of these tips is a great way to get your next remodel off to the right start! For more tips and inspiration, be sure to follow us on Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram, Twitter, and Houzz.