A Finish Comparison | Painted Cabinets or Stained?

The type of finish you used for your kitchen cabinets didn’t used to even be a question. It was paint. Always paint. Stained cabinets were dated and and normally either too yellow or too red and painted cabinets allowed you any color option your heart desired! Most importantly, paint allowed you a bright white kitchen…something everyone loved. But as always, everything comes back around and this is the case for staining. With the popularity of the SoCal look, a light, waxed white oak cabinet has become super popular and with it, the reemergence of the stained cabinet. There are so many more stain options available now so the color options are expanded…even with stain. And you can still keep the natural wood look instead of completely hiding any sort of graining like you would with paint. That being said, there are still pros and cons to both options. So aside from the style you’re wanting to achieve, consider these items before making your cabinet finish choice.

As we mentioned before, paint will completely cover the wood grain on any sort of cabinet. This can be an attractive option for those who prefer a cleaner look and wants something very tailored. More modern kitchens would definitely be the place for a painted cabinet…but also consider the rest of your home. What’s the style you’re trying to achieve and would a wood grain work well with that?

a5a9a47df188306fc3b1f9b24fcc613a.jpg

On the other hand, if you want to show off the character of your cabinets and love the fact that they are real wood, you may not want to cover them up with paint but rather highlight the natural beauty with a well suited stain.

05526dd3f1bbc3061bd35e824523c828.jpg

It’s important to consider what your cabinets are made of as well. Obviously a cabinet that is not real wood cannot be stained. The stain is simply pointless since there’s no natural wood material to enhance and no graining to show. If your home has cabinet doors that are a material other than wood, paint is really your only choice.

21417eecf77ce64678e32a58ff8b0d4b.jpg

Don’t be discouraged though. The nice thing about paint is that the color options are endless! You can literally paint your cabinets any color you want! Most stains are some version of black, brown, grey, or white. There is a variety of tones and hues within those neutral families however, there’s no getting a true blue or green cabinet which some people want.

804a3341e7efc06ad37d0515c307e6b3.jpg

Practicality is a big factor when it comes to kitchen cabinet finishes since the kitchen is a high traffic area. Stained cabinets, because they have more movement in the graining, actually hide more imperfections. Painted cabinets, though, typically show any sort of nick or ding. The paint color is a smooth coat so any break in that coating will be visible. For this same reason, painted cabinets are harder to touch up whereas stained cabinets are easier to fix.

574e0c0c1a0e7580c07101a1ab7f4cd2.jpg

Depending on where you purchase your cabinetry, it can cost more when it comes painted. Most common stain finishes are less than a painted finish, however, the newer stains don’t always fit into the “inexpensive category”.

7f5ed8b918a648a727ba0fa51dc85b3e.jpg

Finally, consider what is required when you want to change your cabinet color down the road. A painted finish can usually just be primed and painted over whereas a stained finish has to be stripped and re-stained which requires a lot more work.

aab9f013cb3f4dc5ed90a7a5d92c1601.jpg

It’s a lot to consider! The nice thing is that you can get a lot of look with either option, you just have to make sure the practical side works well for your lifestyle!

Design Tips | Calm and Collected Master Baths

It’s easy for master bathrooms to get neglected because they are used so often. It doesn’t really make sense when you say it out loud but if you think about it, it’s true. Because a master bathroom is a personal space rarely seen by guests, on top of the fact that it’s used frequently by EVERYONE, it often gets used and abused and doesn’t end up looking so hot. But a master bathroom should be calming space. Even if it does need to be functional, it doesn’t mean that it should be ugly or cluttered. So today we’re talking about ways to try to lighten up and declutter a master bath so that it doesn’t feel like it’s closing in on you when you walk into it.

The first very simple way to streamline the look of your master bathroom is by keeping the color scheme neutral and monochromatic. Tone on tone works for a functional space like this and is actually best for color when it comes to make up. So don’t worry about figuring out ways to add pops of color or crazy pattern, just keep it chill. It will function best that way in the end.

cb22fe60806ebd34313b7379f92bc672.jpg

Even though there are like a million fun shower curtains out there, glass is always better in a master bath. More specifically, frameless glass. In the evolution of glass, you’re not pigeonholed with your glass options anymore. Glass can work in a shower and in a tub/shower combo. You can also make it pretty without all the hardware and do the frameless glass for either scenario. This will make a huge impact on the look over your bathroom. Not only does it elevate the style but it will immediately open up the space to make it feel more airy.

a11727dcac17bb9ae99480e175758835.jpg

While this next tip can go more modern, there are definite ways to keep it within the transitional style. It won’t hold up in a traditional style bathroom but that doesn’t mean it doesn’t look good! Wall mounted vanities immediately open up a bathroom and will instantly give the illusion of more space. We’ll admit that it’s not the simplest swap since it does involve plumbing changes, but if it fits into your style, it really is a cool look that will work for you.

34e28e54e7c68baaa6950b45a41093a6.jpg

This next little tidbit relates to mirrors but gives you options! We are huge fans of countertop to ceiling frameless mirrors that have the lighting inset. It adds a ton of reflection in your space and is visually much cleaner than a framed mirror (no matter how pretty!) However, if that look or even the cost of that look doesn’t work for you, selecting a mirror with integrated LED lighting is another way to visually declutter your master bath by eliminating the visual noise extra layers can create.

3acfc3674e6aa4e2ff92366a15b81ca4.jpg
6399e29361d4d4f5d23f1e8b22b158fb.jpg

Final tip: Chill out, folks! We all need some chill time. :)

TMID In Print | Magazine Feature

If you live in the Seminole county area, you may have seen some of our work recently. Interior Appeal magazine recently published photos of two town homes we designed for Park Square Homes — the Washington & Lincoln. To be published in a 6 page spread is amazing and an incredible honor but it gets even better! We were featured on the cover!

The family room from the Washington model with it’s bright pop of color and modern vibes was selected to grace the Spring/Summer issue cover! While the work is ours, we know that good design is best appreciated through good design photography. So we would be remiss to ignore the fact that Stephen Allen photographed these rooms and does incredible work. We are grateful to him and Orange Appeal for giving our work a voice! Check out the full magazine here and be sure to check out pages 92-97!

Screen Shot 2019-04-21 at 8.28.55 PM.png
Screen Shot 2019-04-21 at 8.30.23 PM.png
Screen Shot 2019-04-21 at 8.37.47 PM.png
Screen Shot 2019-04-21 at 8.38.05 PM.png

Design Tips | Pulling a Family Room Together

Aside from the kitchen, the Family Room is one of the most important rooms in the house. It’s where your family gathers for all sorts of events and occasions and is most likely an area that you enjoy being in. That’s why we think it’s important for the family room to be a space that is comfortable but also durable while also just being pretty! If you have to be in it a lot and are looking at the things in the space, make them enjoyable to be surrounded by! As with every space, there are layers that should go into a family room. We’ve broken them out below to give you some food for thought the next time you decide to redecorate.

Add textured fabrics. This little tidbit is pretty much a standard piece of advice that we give for any room…except maybe the bathroom. But texture in general is huge for us! Texture is what adds depth and interest to any space. A family room in particular will have fabric on multiple applications — drapery, seating, pillows, blankets, so you have lots of ways to add texture in. The nice thing about texture in a family room is that it often does well hiding “use”. Not all, but many textured fabrics have shadows that are created by the high-low effect of the texture and these shadows help disguise dirt! So plus, plus! Visually interesting AND practical!

79b23a6aa68081f7f5dbcea102cbb081.jpg



Mix neutrals. If you’re like us and you gravitate towards neutrals (which isn’t uncommon in a “common area”), then this tip will hopefully help you boost your use of them. The colors that we consider neutral range from the blacks, whites, ivories, and charcoals to tans, beiges and browns, but also include denimy blues and navy. So this is actually a good thing in a family room because, if you want to use all neutrals but you know whites, tans, and beiges are not going to be practical for your family, you’re in luck. Mixing in some brown, grey, and even a darker blue will all work together! This mix of color with allow you ways to hide dirt and spills (if used wisely) while also giving your room some visual depth by bringing in a variety of darks and lights.

622b36060dc0c2ca861b7b2ea6962c51.jpg




Include moveable pieces. This tips is purely for functionality. We all know that a family room is a space where there could be 3 people hanging out or 10. Family move nights happen there but so do birthday parties and game nights. So, in order to accommodate varying amounts of people, include smaller pieces of furniture that are easily moved. This could be small accent tables for drinks or even ottomans for additional seating. You know how your family uses your space best so you may need more of less of these, but we’re pretty sure that including a couple of these elements will come in handy regardless of who you are!

c6deb4fca80e7356a313f949c7efd1ea.jpg


Patterned Rugs hide a lot! One big impact piece that will definitely get a lot of wear in a family room is the area rug. From spills to foot traffic to pets, a family room rug will take a beating. You can approach selection of this piece from different angles — some want to spend the money on it so it will hold up while others feel that a less expensive rug is best since it will likely get replaced often. Either approach is fine, however when it comes to style, we recommend something with pattern. Pattern doesn’t have to mean something crazy and in your face but it does usually mean a variation in color that will hide the use. Larger scale patterns are often better but that’s not to say that some smaller scale patterned rugs couldn’t work too.

174066a8fa160931a7000e7b5088a844.jpg


Consider fabric type for practicality. As we’ve already discussed, family rooms are high traffic areas as well as multi-purpose spaces, it’s important to consider the best type of fabrics for use in a space like this. While the color and pattern and texture all matter, the material makeup is important too! Linens and silks are beautiful but not practical. Leather is great for repelling spills but can be scuffed and torn. Oftentimes a blend of natural material and synthetic fibers (like polyester) work well for durability. Wool is easy to clean and cotton is washable. Also consider selecting fabrics coated with crypton —the liquid will literally bead up and roll off — it’s where a lot of fabrics are going.

Overall, the family room is an important space. It has a lot of boxes that need to be checked off to make it right but it is possible! Fabric options are endless and there’s no reason you should have to sacrifice comfort, durability, or style in a space like this!

Design Trends | Decorating Trends for 2019

It’s hard to believe we’re already almost a month into 2019. It’s a new year and if you’re like us, you’re wanting a fresh look for your home. We know we’ve all been bitten by the redecorating bug hard— most of us have started projects at our own homes in addition to working on our projects. Usually we’re like the shoemaker’s kids and neglect our own homes to focus on our clients but we’re all ready for a little change. Anyway, all that to say, if you’ve been bitten too and you’re looking for some fresh ways to update your home, there are some trends you can use as guidelines to make sure your updates last.

The first item is something we’ve been doing for years so it’s not technically new, but we do like that it will be a focus of 2019. Texture! Layers and layers of different textures will be hot this year. Most people think of fabrics when they think of textures but we’re actually talking about casegoods too. Casegoods with inlay of shell, bone, and mirror will be popular along with casegoods wrapped in the shagreen (kind of a leathery texture). What out nightstands, dressers, and consoles! Texture is coming for you!

d18eb845befc7001d646df72bec03e28.jpg

Emerald green is going to be a hot color this year. That rich, dark, earthy green. It’s going to be big and it’s going to be good! More and more upholstered pieces will be available in emerald (most in a velvet, making it even more lush) so don’t be scared to incorporate a little bit of it throughout!

9a7af2e39778fc86eba72c678211f3cf.jpg

Speaking of upholstery— more and more furniture will come with a curved back and sides which is kindof a big deal. For SO long, the track arm, square back look has been what people want so moving away from that to the curved back is a major shift. Of course, the track arm, square back pieces will always be classics but don’t be surprised at the curved back options available to you!

d0d030f06c841c2e1e9d583605eb18af.jpg

Natural wood tones were becoming popular in bathroom and kitchen cabinets in 2018 but there will be more and more of them in 2019. This earthy look that keeps things a little more natural is on its way up. It seems like we’ve gone through all the painted colors for kitchens and bathrooms so why not go back to the wood look just in a lighter stain?!

0031bbb037fc0da1ab7a1c8f467fc086.jpg

Finally, a focus on windows will be big this year. People are beginning to see windows as the architectural details they can be and are bringing attention to them by painting out the trim in a contrast color like black or even replacing them altogether with the steel framed windows.

360e2d56a80f49ec8957ae666fd02445.jpg

We’re excited about 2019 and what it has in store! Be sure to keep stopping in to see what we’re up to!