Thursday, April 16, 2015

Smart Luxury Features for Your Kitchen or Bath

Master bath heated towel radiator in a bathroom designed and installed by Kitchen & Bath Design + Construction, West Hartford, CT
Heated towel radiator.  Photo courtesy KBDC.
Creating a comfortable, functional, and aesthetically pleasing kitchen or bath is essential when considering a renovation.  So much of our time is spent in these rooms that making them special when remodeling makes sense both from a practical standpoint, but also from a financial one.  What do we mean by "luxury"?  Typically luxury is a "want" as opposed to a "need", and often luxury is seen as something opulent, and to many, unobtainable.  In this instance, however, luxury refers to special touches in a kitchen or bath that create comfort, add functionality and increase our enjoyment of these spaces.  While not every kitchen or bath warrants all of these features, adding any of these will not only increase a homeowner's sense of well being, but also increase over all efficiency of the room.

Custom closet storage in a master bath suite designed and installed by Kitchen & Bath Design + Construction, West Hartford, CT
Custom closet storage system.  Photo by
Chrissy Racho.

Luxury Bath Features

  • Heated Flooring
  • Heated Towel Bar
  • Lighted Magnifying Mirror
  • Drawer Accessories
  • Cabinet Accessories like Hampers and Rollouts
  • Dimmer Switches
  • Humidstat Fans
  • Wall Mounted Electric or Gas Fireplace
  • Kitchenette 
  • Closet Storage system
  • Hands Free Faucet and or Toilet
  • Anti-fog Mirrors
  • Night Light Toilet Seat

Luxury Kitchen Features

  • In Cabinet Lighting
  • Cabinet Accessories
  • Foot Pedal Waste
  • Foot Pedal Sink
  • Pot Fillers
  • Compost Through Counter
  • Water Filtration
  • Specialty Pet Centers
  • In cabinet lighting in a wet bar designed and installed by Kitchen & Bath Design + Construction, West Hartford, CT
    In cabinet lighting.  Photo by Chrissy Racho.
  • Hands Free Faucet

Features like heated flooring and towel bars can make a new bath feel like a day at the spa.  Who wouldn't like to step barefoot onto a warm bathroom floor instead of the standard cold tile.  Not only are these little luxuries,  but they can also serve as auxiliary heat sources for the bath.

For the kitchen, in cabinet lighting and accessories such as pull outs, rollouts, lazy Susan's and drawer organizers help make a kitchen efficient, providing a well designed and thought out space.

To start the creative juices flowing I've included photos of some of these accessories here. What would be on your luxury list?

This master bath includes a kitchenette area for morning coffee or night cap.  By Kitchen & Bath Design + Construction, West Hartford, CT
Master bathroom kitchenette.
Photo courtesy KBDC

Kidney shaped pullouts provide accessible storage in a corner base cabinet by Kitchen & Bath Design + Construction, West Hartford, CT
Base cabinet pull out.  Photo courtesy KBDC.

It's easy to be green with an in-counter compost bucket in this kitchen by Kitchen & Bath Design + Construction, West Hartford, CT
Through counter compost bucket.  Photo courtesy KBDC.

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

LIVE from the Kitchen & Bath Industry Show: 5 Kitchen and Bath Design Trends for 2015

Our Project Manager attended the 2015 Kitchen & Bath Industry Show held in Las Vegas.
This year's Kitchen & Bath Industry
Show was held in Fabulous Las Vegas!
Our Project Manager recently attended KBIS, the Kitchen & Bath Industry Show, in Las Vegas, Nevada.  Going against the slogan, “what happens in Vegas stays in Vegas” we’d like to share with you some of what she came back with.  We'll be creating a series of posts, so without further adieu, read below for 5 design trends for the kitchen and bath.

The cabinets in this picture feature a Storm Gray finish.  Gray is a trending color for 2015.
The cabinets in this master bath 
feature a storm gray finish.  
Free standing tubs continue
to be hot in 2015.  Photo by
Chrissy Racho.
1. Whether traditional, transitional, contemporary or somewhere in between, the colors currently trending for the kitchen and bath are whites, grays and browns.  These colors are being used in cabinetry, tile, and flooring in a myriad of shades and materials.  While red, and its many shades, is also making a splash in the home.  Annually, Pantone, the market leader in communication color, tracks leading trends and names a color of the year.  The Pantone 2015 color of the year is Marsala, and like the wine, it has a rich red hue that easily partners with the browns, greys and whites that are also trending. 

Tile featuring bold "wall paper" patterns are being used in a variety of applications.
Chevron and gray are two
popular trends this year.
Photo by Chrissy Racho.
2. Tile in “wall paper” type patterns like chevron, Moroccan and hound’s-tooth are featured in both bold and neutral colors.  Used in backsplashes, on the floor or as decorative accents, and in materials
like ceramic, glass, metal or even cement, these tiles can add a dramatic effect in a kitchen or bath.

The look of rustic wood is in like this floor tile resembling weathered wood.
The look of rustic is in, like
the flooring of this
master bathroom shower
suite.  The floor tile is made
to resemble weathered
Photo by Chrissy Racho.
3. Rustic wood grains are making their mark like never before, and are being used throughout a room as today’s design aesthetic is returning to the colors and textures of nature.  The look and texture of wood is being integrated into a variety of materials from vinyl to tile and is being used on the floor, walls, in the shower, on islands, and everyplace in between. 

4. Transitional design, design featuring simpler lines than traditional, but not as basic or severe as contemporary, is also trending in kitchens and baths for 2015.  This style is more relaxed with a family friendly focus.

5. Storage and organization is on everyone’s design wish list and there are many new accessories that can help keep a household in order.  These feature everything from knife block and utensil organizers built into a base cabinet to bathroom cabinet caddy’s for hair brushes and blow dryers.

There were so many trends featured at this year’s design industry show, including a 5,900 square foot show house.  Those discussed here are just a few that stood out and warranted a bit of discussion.  Other trends that continue to gain popularity are freestanding tubs, freestanding seats in the shower, touch and touchless technology in toilets and plumbing fixtures and integrating energy saving elements into the home.  There is much more to share, and we will in some other upcoming posts so stay tuned.

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Like KBDC On Facebook!

O.k., it took a while, but you can now find Kitchen + Bath Design + Construction on Facebook.  Please stop by for a look and a "Like".  We'd really appreciate it if you could help us to spread the word.

Friday, January 30, 2015

Kitchen + Bath Design + Construction of West Hartford, CT Receives Best Of Houzz 2015 Awards

I think 2015 is going to be a great year!  Not only are we celebrating 25 years in business, but Kitchen + Bath Design + Construction has been awarded “Best Of Houzz” badges for both Design AND Customer Satisfaction by Houzz, the leading platform for home remodeling and design.

We were chosen by the more than 25 million monthly unique users that comprise the Houzz community from among more than 500,000 active home building, remodeling and design industry professionals.

The “Best Of Houzz” award is given in two categories: Design and Customer Satisfaction. Design award winners’ work was the most popular among the more than 25 million monthly users on Houzz, known as “Houzzers.” Customer Satisfaction honors are determined by a variety of factors, including the number and quality of client reviews a professional has received in 2014. Winners are "awarded" a “Best Of Houzz 2015” badge which is placed on their Houzz profiles, helping Houzz users around the world to discover and love a professional’s work, to learn even more about that business’ popularity and satisfaction rating among their peers in the Houzz community.

“Houzz provides homeowners with a 360 degree view of home building, remodeling and design industry professionals, empowering them to engage the right people and products for their project,” said Liza Hausman, vice president of industry marketing for Houzz. “We’re delighted to recognize Kitchen + Bath Design + Construction among our “Best Of” professionals as judged by our community of homeowners and design enthusiasts who are actively remodeling and decorating their homes.”

If you haven't been to yet, you should check it out.   Why not start with our Houzz?!

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Kitchen + Bath Design + Construction Celebrates 25 Years of Business!

Kitchen + Bath Design + Construction
Owner, Lorey Cavanaugh in her showroom
located at 13 Sedgwick Road, West Hartford, CT.
Photo by Chrissy Racho.

Happy New Year everyone! Break out the champagne-this year, 2015, marks our 25th anniversary of doing business in the greater Hartford area.  I am so blessed to be able to do what I love, designing kitchens and baths, making a difference in people's homes and lives.  I recently read an interesting, and somewhat surprising, statistic in Qualified Remodeler Magazine that roughly 13 percent of remodeling businesses close each year, and less than half never make it to a fifth anniversary.  As a female owned and operated business in a male dominated field, heading into 25 years of service is even more significant.  I credit some of this success to innovative design, but more importantly are strong connections to some remarkable people-clients, staff, subcontractors, family and friends.  To help celebrate this milestone, we've expanded our showroom and conference area to include a new kitchen display highlighting some of the latest trends and cabinetry accessories, instituted a client thank you program and will offer value-added kitchen and bath seminars.  I think 2015 will prove to be an exciting year for Kitchen + Bath Design + Construction. I hope this year brings you great things as well, and maybe we'll have the opportunity to meet and discuss your next remodeling project. 

Friday, December 5, 2014

Making Memories: KBDC Wishes You a Happy Holiday And Offers A Cookie Recipe To Try

We do quite a few kitchen projects throughout the year, and it always brings me great joy to hear from a client how much they are enjoying their new space and how well the newly remodeled kitchen is working for them.  At this time of year when so much of our holidays revolve around cooking and time spent in the kitchen, many memories are made as children and parents work together to bake those holiday breads, cookies and meals.  To me, nothing says home and Christmas, like the smell of cookies baking in the oven. With this in mind, I would like to share a recipe from Cook's Country that recently made its way into my email inbox.  It was first published in a 2009 issue of their magazine. It uses both Nutella and espresso powder and sounded delicious to me.  I am looking forward to trying this recipe.  Let me know if you whip up a batch with, or for, someone special in your life.  I would love to hear.

Wishing you a very happy holiday season and a healthy, prosperous 2015.  Enjoy!!

Hazelnut Chewies, Makes about 3 1/2 dozen cookies

Nutella is a chocolate-hazelnut spread that can be found near the peanut butter in most grocery stores; you will need one 13-ounce jar for this recipe. These cookies can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for 3 days.


  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/4 cups Nutella spread
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 1/3 cups granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon instant espresso powder
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/3 cup milk
  • 1 1/2 cups hazelnuts, toasted and chopped fine
  • 1 cup confectioners' sugar


Adjust oven racks to upper-middle and lower-middle positions and heat oven to 375 degrees. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper. Combine flour, baking powder, and salt in bowl. With electric mixer on medium-high speed, beat Nutella, butter, and granulated sugar until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add vanilla, espresso, and eggs and mix until incorporated. Reduce speed to low, add flour mixture and milk, and mix until just combined. Fold in ½ cup hazelnuts and refrigerate dough until firm, about 1 hour.

Place remaining hazelnuts in bowl. Add confectioners’ sugar to another bowl. One at a time, roll dough into 1-inch balls, roll in hazelnuts, then roll in confectioners’ sugar. Place balls 2 inches apart on prepared baking sheets. Bake until set, about 8 minutes, switching and rotating sheets halfway through baking. Cool 5 minutes on sheets, then transfer to wire rack and cool completely. Repeat with remaining dough.

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