Youthful and Timeless Naperville Kitchen

“You don’t have to reinvent the wheel with your kitchen renovation,” says Normandy Designer Laura Barber, AKBD. This Naperville home is great example of a kitchen that functioned well, but was in need of a refresh. “They wanted a kitchen with a youthful feel and timeless style. Black and white is a perennially winning combination. It’s perfect in many kitchens, especially this one where they were looking for an updated classic style that wouldn’t date itself over time.

before kitchen remodeling
White kitchen cabinets with cooktop in the island

Small tweaks help. “We removed the soffits so we could expand the height of the upper cabinets and give them more storage,” explains Laura. “Gaining that extra bit of vertical space made it an easy decision to incorporate a built-in microwave without sacrificing storage space.”

A little-used desk is now a wine bar when entertaining and a first-stop spot for every day. “Everyone needs a drop spot, a place where you set your keys, phone, and computer when you walk in the door,” says Laura. She adds, “When it’s time to host friends and family they can tuck all their things away and use this space as a beverage station.”

Thinking through what your kitchen is missing helps make sure you get what you need from the renovation.

before the kitchen remodel
White kitchen with dark island

Laura cautions that even when you are not planning to make major structural or layout changes, it’s a good idea to do a complete renovation rather than just replace the cabinets. “Code has changed since this home was built in the 90s. It’s important for us to find out what’s going on behind the walls to give you a beautiful home that’s also safe,” explains Laura. We brought everything into present standards including insulation for energy efficiency and updated plumbing and electrical. Additionally, the new appliances and specialized storage increased their daily enjoyment of the space.

“If you’re happy with how your kitchen works but want it to look differently, we can make that happen for you. With everyone spending more time at home it’s really life enhancing to have rooms you love, especially the kitchen,” says Laura.

If you’re thinking of remodeling your kitchen, you can set up time to talk to Laura about the possibilities. Explore the Normandy Remodeling photo galleries for more inspiration. We share photos, videos and more on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest and TikTok. If you enjoy design, please follow along with us.

before the kitchen remodel
White cabinets in the kitchen

The Lasting Appeal of a Basement Laundry Room

Basement laundry room, shelf over the washer and dryer, sink, under sink storage cabinets, upper cabinets

In the past few years, laundry rooms have moved up in the world. Families are choosing to combine their first floor mudroom with the laundry room, creating a one-stop drop and go spot for grubby sports gear and other frequently laundered items. Second floor laundry rooms have also increased in popularity. Having the laundry located upstairs is convenient for washing sheets and putting them back on the beds without going up and down the stairs several times.

Laundry room, floor to ceiling cabinets, laundry sorting storage, upper cabinets, gold hardware

But don’t forget about the basement, as your lower level remains an excellent location for the laundry room. “If your laundry room is in the basement, it may be time to freshen up the space,” says Normandy Designer Karen Chanan. Karen adds, “If the space is depressing, we can make it appealing. If it’s already nice, we can elevate it further to function better and be more enjoyable when you’re in there.”

Once the plumbing is in place, insulation is important. You have water lines for both the washer and the sink. Plan to keep those working well during a deep freeze with good insulation. Even when working in an existing basement laundry room, take the time to assess the plumbing and make the necessary improvements and upgrades. Choose flooring that can handle a little water. Tile and cement are good options.

White laundry room cabinets with gold tone fixtures

One benefit of having your laundry room in the basement is space. “You can spread out and give yourself a folding area with room for multiple laundry baskets,” says Karen. You can add cabinetry, hanging racks, possibly even a spot to bathe the dog.

A second, less obvious benefit is that a basement laundry room can be your own little escape room. Pop on down for some time with nothing but the hum of the dryer to keep you company.

Laundry Room with Barn Doors

We’ve seen some incredible basement renovations recently. Where your basement is a true family destination, it’s nice when the laundry room is as attractive as the other rooms. “If you have a beautiful basement, you want a laundry room that complements the design. Then, when the door is open, you can feel good about people peeking into your basement laundry room,” says Karen.

If you’re thinking of a basement or whole home remodeling project, you can set up a time to talk to Karen about the possibilities. There are excellent ideas in our Normandy Remodeling photo galleries. We share projects and inspiration on Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest and TikTok. Follow along with us for doses of design throughout the week.

Lower level laundry room, storage cabinets, laundry sorting, sink, upper cabinets

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