September 2008’s Featured Works

The Kitchen Guide

By Laura Jensen, CMKBD
Schiffer Publishing, Ltd.
Atglen, PA

In The Kitchen Guide, Laura Jensen has compiled 427 case studies of kitchens, complete with vibrant photography, that illustrate the never ending design possibilities that kitchens present.

This comprehensive design guide shows how each facet of a kitchen can be crafted to collectively produce a creative and stylish room.

Beginning with architectural elements, this section of the book focuses on overall dimensions and the incorporation of various structural fundamentals. Windows, ceiling treatments, flooring, lighting and other structural elements are among the architectural fundamentals discussed. In the chapter on flooring, Jensen profiles a Massachusetts kitchen that features a focal point in front of the range – a ceramic tile floor with inlaid medallion. Additionally, a backsplash featuring a vine-like design is shown.

The essentials of the work space is the book’s next focus, with specifics on the wet center, the cold center and the hot center. One Tennessee home displays a wet center with raised dishwasher behind a cabinet panel. It sits on the far left of the island, which features landing space beside a double-bowl sink.

Detail elements are also considered, including stacked, multi-height and multicolored cabinetry. With explanations of the differences in cabinet styles and colors, these elements can be as elaborate or simple as the client wants. A case study kitchen from Michigan is seen in the stacked cabinet chapter, and shows glass-door cabinets that echo the window patterns stacked on the closed door lower cabinets.

The text ends with a resource list of contributors and their contact information.

The Kitchen Guide provides designers a plethora of projects to guide their clients to a favorable design idea.

The Victorian House Book

By Robin Guild
Firefly Books, Ltd.
Buffalo, NY

Written by Robin Guild with builders, designers and homeowners in mind, The Victorian House Book illustrates the history of residences in the Victorian era, while addressing how to remodel these homes for modern times.

Using 500 color photographs and 1,500 line drawings, this workbook is organized room-to-room and from foundation to rooftop to assist in redesign plans.

Aided by architects, artisans and historians, Guild, who is a designer, has created an encyclopedic reference book to use in preserving and restoring this architecture’s past.

The book details the history of Victorian homes and the importance of finding a balance between living within the style and adapting the elements for modern lifestyles accordingly.

The book begins with a tutorial on the progression of architecture and design from the Victorian style model to present design. The chapter on ‘Victorian Inspiration’ explains how this style developed and covers the three major categories of this style: Classical, Medieval and Modern. The classical style is seen in designs from Greek to Roman, while the Medieval style is a product of the gothic period of architecture.

Illustrations on standard house types are provided at the end of the chapter. Through photographs, examples of modern architecture mimicking Victorian design are seen. Each chapter ends with line drawings of the structures discussed.

Chapter five speaks specifically to kitchens and baths in the Victorian home. A transition from stoves of iron, coal or wood burning variety to gas created structural issues, forcing the kitchen to a separate area of the home in Victorian times. The text gives ideas on how best to achieve the Victorian feel, as this layout is uncommon in modern home design.

Guidelines for sympathetic conversions appear at the end of the text, which assess the conditions, offer tips for adaptations and alterations and speak to the care and maintenance of the Victorian home and the designs within.

How To Work With An Interior Designer

By Judy Sheridan, ASID, CID
Gibbs Smith
Layton, UT

Written as a guide to help clients work better with professionals, How To Work With An Interior Designer answers many of the questions homeowners may have for designers, including how a designer can save them money and how to get the most out of a designer.

Author Judy Sheridan offers helpful tips and advice throughout the text, such as keeping photographs of furnishings in a file-by-room system.

There is also discussion on the differences between design in reality and design on reality television that was written to help the client recognize the difference. Included in the appendix are client letters, contracts and kitchen sketch samples, all designed to create the most comfortable design experience possible.

With checklists, wish lists and lists regarding when to hire a decorator or what a designer should have at an interview, Sheridan pulls together the knowledge and information of many years of experience to not only abate the client’s fears, but also provide designers with insight into clients’ needs when working in this partnership.