Outdoor Living Trends ’07: Firepits and Outdoor Rooms

Homeowners will be adding firepits and fireplaces for outdoor entertaining in 2007. And they will be paying a lot more attention to environmentally-friendly landscape options, such as adding native plants and managing stormwater more effectively, according to a new survey of leading members of the American Society of Landscape Architects.

The informal survey conducted in December, identified the most popular requests from homeowners and commercial clients for 2007. For homeowners, firepits and outdoor fireplaces top the list. Also popular are requests for sustainable solutions, such as using native plants that require less watering and maintenance.

Homeowners are requesting landscape architects design complete outdoor rooms, such as kitchens and bars, for entertaining. Water features such as koi ponds, pools and fountains continue to be popular. Incorporating rain gardens and green roofs in home landscapes will add a different — and more sustainable — flavor to 2007 homes.

Steve Martino, FASLA, of Phoenix — recipient of both the ASLA Design Medal and the ASLA Residential Design Award of Excellence in 2006 — cites private living spaces, outdoor rooms and water features as top homeowner requests. He also says that clients are coming to him for “green solutions” for their homes.

Paints & Caulks

Color Trends 2007

From spicy color combinations to hues that warm the soul, 2007 color trends contain palettes that work independently as a “statement color” or as a subtle backdrop where home furnishings take center stage.

“Many of these palettes will find a home in rooms from coast to coast,” said Debbie Zimmer, color and decorating expert for the Rohm and Haas Paint Quality Institute and member of the Color Marketing Group, an international organization that helps shape the latest color trends.

“What I enjoy most about our palette grouping this year is the homey and nature-like quality.”

Comfort colors

Biscuit and wheat neutrals, cocoa brown, pumpkin orange and cinnamon apple pie, are just a few of the comfort colors that will wrap your room with warmth and promote a stress-free space. The comfort color palette is an especially good choice for kitchens and family rooms.

Back to Nature

Yellows and blues, leaf-like greens, along with organic browns combine to bring the outdoors in. Add translucency and a glass-like quality by incorporating varying paint sheen levels. As a subtle accent color, add rust or copper-like metallics into the scheme. Bedrooms and bathrooms are perfect places to incorporate the back to nature hues or in rooms where an accent wall is employed.

Stark Contrast

From clean, clear reds and deep plums to the sophistication of black and white, this color group works both as an accent and as an elegant backdrop for many living spaces. Polished brass metallics complement this scheme. Dining, living rooms and especially powder rooms will benefit from this bold and spicy palette.

Kitchens & Baths

2007 NKBA Executive Committee

The National Kitchen & Bath Association (NKBA) announces the appointment of the 2007 NKBA Executive Committee as follows:

President - Bob Garner, CMKBD, Medallion Cabinetry Inc.
President-elect — Sara Ann Busby, CKD, Sara Busby Design
Vice-president — Suzie Williford, Kiva Kitchen and Bath
Secretary — Mark Karas, CMKBD, Adams Kitchens, Inc.
Treasurer — David Alderman, CKD, Dave’s Cabinet, Inc.
Past president — Allan S. Pattison, CMKBD, Kitchen Korner

Coastal Construction

Plea for Building Trades Volunteers on Gulf Coast

Volunteers of America is seeking volunteers with building skills to help in the rebuilding of the Gulf States, which were devastated from Hurricane Katrina. More than a year after Hurricane Katrina, New Orleans, as well as the Gulf Coast regions in Alabama and Mississippi are in critical need of assistance.

“Our needs for volunteer help are as great as ever,” says Cathie Peterman, New Orleans director of volunteer services for Volunteers of America. “So many people rushed here to help following the disaster, but the volunteer help has fallen off dramatically.”

Particularly needed are carpenters, electricians, plumbers and other professional craftsmen. Many homes need to be entirely rebuilt.

Unfortunately, many residents have received insufficient or no insurance money to help with the rebuilding. Homes need insulation, wiring and plumbing installed; ceilings, walls and flooring need to be built; light fixtures and appliances, trim, doors and cabinets need to be installed; carpet and flooring need to be put down; and homes need to have new roofs.

Skilled tradespeople are encouraged to spend their next vacation or downtime in New Orleans, Alabama or Mississippi. For more information, please visit the New Orleans Volunteers of America website at: www.voagno.org.