Buzzing with Excitement from the 2015 KBIS Show!

Omega displayWith this being our 30th year in business, we want to be sure we are continuing to provide our customers with the best construction materials and remodeling advice our industry has to offer. We took advantage of the opportunity to send our designers to the annual KBIS/IBS Design & Construction Week held at the Las Vegas Convention Center this month. This event featured the combination of both the International Builders’ Show (IBS) and the Kitchen & Bath Industry Show (KBIS), put on by partners National Kitchen & Bath Association, and the National Association of Home Builders.

Danielle & Mark
Danielle Peter with Mark Koch, our Omega sales representative

As one can imagine, when such industry powerhouses combine to throw an event meant to both inspire and connect design-build professionals with the most innovative resources and materials available on the market, their attendees would come home with a wealth of knowledge and ideas.

Danielle Peter, one of our designers who attended the show, believes this is quite an understatement. “When you go to the KBIS and IBS show, you expect to see what’s new and exciting. What I find even more valuable, is the access one has to educational events led by the multi-generational collection of game changers, entrepreneurs, board members, celebrity designers, and peers alike.  Everyone is so open to sharing their knowledge and philosophies of the construction industry with you, and that helps make a difference between a designer and design professional” says Danielle.

Frameless Omega display
Frameless display by Omega Cabinetry

Omega Custom Cabinetry by Master Brand, one of our cabinet companies, promoted their newly launched frameless line, which included Ricci Black Gloss Acrylic Doors. Their exhibits were top of the line and Mark Koch, our Omega sales rep, said that even he was impressed with their displays! Omega’s bath display in Metro Quartersawn Oak Ceruse Grey was featured in “Best of KBIS”.

Cambria new for 2015
Cambria natural quartz counter top sample slab–full of movement

 

Georgia at CambriaAnother one of our product vendors, Cambria, a natural quartz counter top company, showcased a new line of slabs that were rich with color and movement–none like any of their current selections. We are anxiously awaiting these new samples in our showroom.

Top Knobs
Top Knobs “jewelry for your kitchen”

Top Knobs 2Also, Top Knobs–our most popular cabinet hardware company, displayed a wide variety of their products, including “jewelry for your kitchen” for those who want to glam up their kitchen cabinets.

Alana Busse, our designer and show attendee, says “There were so many amazing new products at the show this year. I can’t wait to introduce them to our clients for their upcoming kitchen and bath projects.”

Georgia Sturgeon in a Google Analytics workshop
Georgia Sturgeon in a Google Analytics workshop

Georgia Sturgeon, Westside’s office and marketing manager, gained insight on internet marketing trends as well as social media tips. “This show is so immense–totally packed with products and information that one could spend a week here and not absorb it all.”

As you can see, our staff was greatly inspired by the KBIS kitchen and bath show and are buzzing with excitement to share their ideas with you. Give us a call or visit our showroom to schedule a free home consultation.

 

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No Place Like Home for the Holiday Parties

Virginia Dudasik completely agrees with the above sentiment and therefore hosted a Christmas Open House in her freshly remodeled kitchen. Virginia is a designer, a member of the Conejo Association of Professional Interior Designers (CAPID) of which I am also a member, and she is our project photographer. Virginia and her husband are also clients of ours—Westside Remodeling recently remodeled their kitchen. Virginia provided the creative vision for the project, while our designer, Alana A. Busse, completed the cabinet design and coordinated the project, and Marty Farrell was their lead carpenter.

Westside Party3Virginia was kind enough to invite our entire staff to her party, and Alana, Georgia and I were delighted to be able to attend. Vicki Korniski, a previous designer of ours who retired at the end of last year, was there as well. Vicki is a friend of Virginia’s through CAPID. This year Virginia showed off both her new kitchen and her new granddaughter!

The house was decorated beautifully for the holidays, and a wonderful time was had by all. Not only did we have roast beef with all the trimmings, but the guests brought many delicious dishes, including lots of Filipino delicacies! One of the guests played Christmas carols on the piano with the skillfulness of a professional musician. Several guests danced to the music, while others gathered around to listen. Virginia’s newly remodeled kitchen and serving area looked fantastic.

Virginia loves to host parties and entertain, and so her goal was that her kitchen be designed for entertaining. Her solution was to relocate her kitchen to the larger space that was once the family room and then create a comfortable lounge where the original kitchen was once positioned. The two spaces now integrate seamlessly, providing an easy flow for guests.

The island cabinetry is dark-stained alder, which contrasts beautifully with the white painted wall cabinets. The countertops are quartz, while the backsplash is an interesting combination of large 12 x 24 porcelain tile in the lower portion with 3 x 12 glass tile above. The kitchen includes a full-size built-in refrigerator, two sinks, and waste containers both in the island as well as near the sink—providing two clean-up zones. This new kitchen provides the ultimate in storage, including wine bottle storage, pull-outs in the pantry, cookbook storage, storage for silverware, and cookie sheets stored above the oven for easy access.

Three windows in the original family room were made smaller so the kitchen cabinets could fit above them. To increase wall space, the original sliding glass door was changed to a single lite French door. The once red-brick fireplace, newly faced with porcelain tile that mimic the look of concrete, provides a welcoming atmosphere in the kitchen.

If you like to entertain but your kitchen needs updating, be sure to contact Westside Remodeling—before your next big party!

— Bob Sturgeon

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Is Your Kitchen Ready for the Holidays?

As I’ve said so often, the kitchen is the heart of the home! I expect many of you will be spending a lot of time in the kitchen during the upcoming holidays. That’s where families love to gather, as they prepare meals and share funny stories about the kids and grandkids. I hope you and yours will make some wonderful memories this season!

One thing you may discover over the holidays is that your kitchen desperately needs updating. Perhaps the number of people living in your home has increased, and the kitchen feels cramped for space. Or maybe changes in your lifestyle means you use your kitchen differently than you used to. Just remember that when you choose Westside Remodeling for your home improvement project, you receive the following benefits of our Design & Build process:

You contract with a single company for both design and construction services. Our in-house team of professionals eliminates the additional aggravation of hiring a separate architect.
Our designers work hand-in-hand with you right from the outset, listening to your needs and desires, while keeping a careful eye on your budget and timeline.
Our designers help promote the most cost effective methods and designs that will also meet your design needs.
Your design is specifically developed to meet each of your goals, and then material selections are made—before construction begins. We avoid “designing” during construction, which is more costly.
Valuable time is saved, since the construction process can begin immediately following your design and cost approvals.
Our project managers have direct communication with our designers during construction, should any questions arise.
Our team provides a single point of responsibility. There are no misunderstood intentions, saving time and expense during construction.

Westside Remodeling works within the Design & Build model because it provides the best remodeling experience and a superior final product for our clients. Contact us at (805) 499-4121 or visit www.westsideremodeling.com to learn more.

A beautiful kitchen in Newbury Park, recently remodeled by Westside Remodeling

Happy Holidays!

— Bob Sturgeon

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Remodel Your Entire Home in Phases

Remodeling your entire home provides a fresh, new look, but it also may be a larger investment than your budget can handle right now. Here’s the good news: you don’t have to wait to begin the process until you have saved enough money to bring your whole vision to completion. Westside Remodeling has some suggestions for moving ahead in the right direction.

1. Make your wish list
2. Determine your budget
3. Set priorities
4. Meet with our Westside Remodeling design team
5. Work out a plan to remodel in phases, one room at a time

Instead of remodeling your entire home at once, you can select one, well-used room in your home and give it a facelift now, and then move on to the next phase of your plan at a later date. By planning ahead, you can be sure that all the spaces in your home will integrate beautifully once remodeling is complete.

The first phase of your remodeling project is going to depend on what it is that you are looking to incorporate–more space, more light, a flooring upgrade, larger windows, new doors, or a new function for the existing room. While each of these remodeling ideas have merit, you should focus on the ones that are the most important to you and see just how far your financial budget is going to allow you to go at the moment.

Westside Remodeling will help you look at structural changes first. Perhaps you wish to improve traffic flow and bring more light into a room by having a wall removed between that room and an adjoining room, thereby enlarging the space. We will help you determine whether this is a structurally sound project. It’s important, for example, to know whether the wall is load-bearing and what is inside the wall—such as electrical, HVAC or plumbing—before it is demolished. If this option isn’t feasible, we can suggest other alternatives. You may decide to bring more light into the space through installing larger windows or skylights, for example.

Perhaps it’s time to remove worn-out carpeting or sheet vinyl and replace it with beautiful wood flooring or tile. Fresh paint in a bold new color will update the look of the room. Cabinets or countertops in today’s sleek, modern styling will completely transform the space. New cabinetry adds both functionality and refinement to a room. Since the floors, walls and cabinets are the largest areas of most rooms, any change that you make is going to create a big difference that you’ll appreciate instantly. Depending on the room and its purpose, other remodeling changes that you might want to consider include adding built-ins, such as bookcases, a fireplace, or a desk.

Whatever you choose, making a plan to remodel in phases can help you complete your vision for your home for an investment that fits your budget. We at Westside Remodeling would love to work with you on your plan.

— Bob Sturgeon

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A Fantastic Outdoor Kitchen

As we prepare to celebrate Thanksgiving this month, my thoughts turn to thankfulness for my family. What a joy it is to bring family members together this time of year! And there’s no better place to celebrate than in an outdoor patio/kitchen, especially since it stays warm almost year ’round in Southern CA. We recently had the pleasure of helping one young couple get set up for the holiday season.

BEFORE

BEFORE

BEFORE

This young professional couple spent some time searching online for a reputable, high-quality remodeling company in their area. They found the Westside Remodeling website, liked what they saw, and then stopped in to visit our showroom. This was the beginning of the process that resulted in their wonderful, new outdoor kitchen.

DURING

I met with our clients at their home to discuss their vision for the outside space, which also included a gas fireplace and patio cover. The husband is a real BBQ type of guy who loves outdoor cooking, so he was very enthused about this project. He had already begun some of the demolition work himself, digging up planter beds to make more space available, while keeping the concrete patio as a foundation for the kitchen. In the coming spring, he plans to stain the concrete patio, making it appear more uniform.

Before we built the BBQ island, the bar, and the fireplace, we had to cut out the existing concrete patio where we needed to dig the footings. The base was then constructed of concrete block and finished with an all natural stone veneer in Desert Gold. The countertops are in Typhoon Bordeaux granite that features striking gold veining and ribbons of burgundy. These materials are able to withstand high temperatures, as well as a variety of weather conditions.

AFTER

The BBQ island is well equipped with a Fire Magic BBQ grill, a side burner and a power burner, plus storage cabinets and drawers. An attractive curved bar with stools provides seating for four, while the stand up bar behind the BBQ grill is perfect for entertaining larger crowds.

AFTER

A virtually maintenance-free patio cover was constructed of Alumawood, an embossed aluminum product with a textured wood-grain finish. We installed small LED down lights overhead, along with a junction box for our clients’ lovely chandelier that adds considerable charm to the space. An infrared space heater was attached to the wall for cool evenings.

AFTER

Westside handled all the plans, engineering and permits for this project, which is one of the benefits of working with an experienced remodeling company. Our clients are very happy with the results. The wife told me recently, “Our BBQ is getting lots of use. People who come to see it think it’s fantastic!”

I personally think the outdoor kitchen turned out beautifully. It was really fun to work together with our clients to design it and build it. And now I’m looking forward to the future, since we’ll be working with them on their indoor kitchen!

Be sure to contact Westside when you’re ready to build your outdoor kitchen.  Visit our website or call 805-499-4121.

– Bob Sturgeon

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Our Clients Maximize Their View with a New Balcony

Our clients’ lovely home is located on a golf course, and they delight in the incredible views of the greens, the sunset over the ocean and the Channel Islands in the background. The husband is from England and he and his wife enjoy having friends from England visit every year.

The couple wished to spend time on their balcony with their visitors, savoring the beauty of the surroundings—but it wasn’t possible. Their existing cantilevered balcony was so small, it could barely accommodate a couple of chairs, let alone a table. And they really didn’t have enough covered space under the balcony for a sitting area on the patio.

Westside removed the original balcony and designed a balcony that is supported by sturdy steel posts inside stucco columns that match the exterior. This support structure made it possible for us to more than double the size of the balcony.

Our clients requested that the columns be narrow, so their view wasn’t blocked as they relaxed in the patio sitting area. The columns, however, rest on wide footings that our engineer determined meet the latest seismic building codes. To construct the footings, we had to cut into the existing stamped, colored concrete patio, and our clients feared their patio might be damaged. True to our standard practices, Westside handled the process with care, and the patio was not negatively affected in any way. The low brick pilasters at the base of the columns provide an attractive finish, without being an obstruction.

Under the balcony, we installed high-efficiency LED lighting between the support beams to illuminate the patio sitting area. The corbels were framed and then stuccoed, to fit the existing decorative elements of the home.

 

 

 

We are particularly proud of the balcony railing that we created as a perfect curve, a design that provides more space than the usual rectangular footprint. The railing is powder-coated aluminum, which offers a maintenance-free, rust-free finish appropriate for coastal environments.

 

 

Our clients have already had the pleasure of spending time with guests on their new patio and balcony, and they love it. Here’s how they responded to our Guild Quality client survey: “We were very pleased with Westside’s professionalism throughout the entire project, and we are extremely happy with the results. We have already recommended Westside to friends.”

Please feel free to check out Westside’s Guild Quality survey reports on our website. Read what our other clients have to say, and then contact us for your next project. We’re looking forward to hearing from you.

Bob Sturgeon

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Spice up Dinner Time with a New Luxury Kitchen

Spicing up dinner time with a few zesty recipes might be a bit more fun in a new luxury kitchen. After all, who wouldn’t enjoy a kitchen facelift that incorporates deluxe granite or natural quartz countertops, custom wood cabinets, and stainless steel appliances? The kitchen is one of the most visited rooms in a home, and as such, it’s a good investment to renovate it with modern upgrades that ooze with style, quality, and convenience. After all, there’s nothing quite like cooking in a luxury kitchen. DSC_6287

Westside Remodeling recommends the following strategies you can take to upgrade your kitchen from ordinary to luxurious: 

While many homeowners associate cherry wood as the popular choice for a new luxury kitchen, today’s options for customized cabinetry are expanding to include other wood species, such as walnut and quarter sawn oak. Painted finishes, especially white and gray, are on the rise. Current design trends for cabinets incorporate clean lines with contrasting textures and hidden storage options to make cooking more convenient. More than one wood species or wood finish is often blended together in the same kitchen, or metal accent doors are combined with wood doors. Typically, you’ll want to choose a style in keeping with the general décor of the rest of your home. And don’t be afraid to ask your designer how to make your kitchen even more inviting by adding accents or conversation pieces to draw in your guests.

DSC_6289

Granite and quartz are very elegant choices for countertops. Quartz is coming on strong as manufacturers continue to create fabulous new looks that set your kitchen apart from the rest. This material is even more durable than granite and easier to clean. Another glamorous option is a solid wood countertop. Again, the trend is to mix textures within one kitchen—perhaps wood on the island and quartz on the rest of the countertops.

Stainless steel continues to offer a sleek, luxurious look that brightens the kitchen’s appearance. New trends for appliance styling include white and black glass exteriors that offer a sleek, minimalist appearance that is also easy to clean. Upgrading your oven to one that offers steam/convection cooking, or purchasing an induction cooktop, or perhaps a smart phone enabled gas range provides you with some of the amazing conveniences that help to make cooking a luxury.

Tile and hardwoods offer excellent choices for deluxe flooring that stands up to lots of traffic, while also providing a stylish base for your kitchen table and chairs. Your options are a bit more generous than in past years, since today’s porcelain tile can convincingly mimic wood or stone. Beautiful exotic hardwoods and hardwoods with textures, such as hand-scraped finishes, add glamour to your kitchen.DSC_6295

Upgrading your kitchen’s cabinetry, countertops, appliances, flooring, walls, and lighting can transform a dull kitchen to one with the elegance of a fine restaurant. Giving your kitchen a luxurious facelift that encourages you to try out gourmet recipes for your dining pleasure is a great idea, since it also increases the market value of your property. If you are working with a really outdated kitchen, you may want to overhaul the entire room with a quality renovation.”

Ready to start planning your luxury kitchen? Call Westside Remodeling at 805-499-4121 and speak to Danielle Peter or Alana A. Busse, our talented designers and remodeling specialists!

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5 Storage Solutions Every Kitchen MUST Have

Alana Busse asked us to repost this recent Dura Supreme blog entry, since it is so useful and informative. She thinks it will be of great interest to you, and she wants to share.

“As a kitchen designer and remodeling specialist, I find that all of my clients want the most storage they can get out of their new kitchens,” says Alana. “That is easy with great storage solutions like these.”

Here are the top five requested storage solutions every kitchen must have!

1. TRASH AND RECYCLING
Every kitchen will benefit from having a dedicated space for trash and recycling bins. In fact, this is our most popular kitchen cabinet.Jodi_BRC

2. SILVERWARE AND UTENSIL STORAGE
Silverware and kitchen utensils are essential tools for every kitchen, and when drawers are organized and neatly divided for each utensil, your entire kitchen will be more streamlined and functional. Our divided trays, two-tier trays and drawer partitions allow you to segment a drawer for optimal organization and efficiency.Jodi_BRC-utensil

3. SPICE STORAGE
You don’t have to be a culinary professional to appreciate a well-organized collection of savory spices in your home. Dura Supreme offers an amazing array of kitchen storage accessories for your spices; flat storage within drawers, vertical racks that pull out from thin spaces, door mounted racks, specialized shallow cabinets and even drawers with stainless steel spice jars tucked into their own compartments.Jodi_Spice

4. ROLL-OUT STORAGE
Base cabinets are usually 24″ deep, providing a lot of storage space. However, accessing the items stored in the back of the cabinet can be inconvenient and cumbersome. That problem is solved with our roll-out shelves, available in several depths, different configurations and with various partitions. Our roll-out shelves glide out smoothly on full-extension slides and include a soft-close, self-closing feature for optimum convenience in your kitchen.Jodi_RolloutDrawer

5. CREATIVE CORNER STORAGE SOLUTIONS
With all of the creative corner storage solutions available today, there is no need to overlook this once unused, inaccessible space in our kitchens. Dura Supreme offers several ingenious accessories so that every inch of our corner cabinets is accessible and convenient. Turntables are a traditional solution and ours spin smoothly and effortlessly. Swiveling shelves and gliding trays are also clever options to cavernous corner cabinets, so that the items stored in the cabinet glide out for easy access.Jodi_Corner

Reposted from a Dura Supreme blog post by Jodi Tramontin on August 25, 2014

You are invited to visit Westside Remodeling’s showroom to see samples of the Dura Supreme cabinetry line, which has a multitude of style options and can fit most budgets.

 

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Illuminate Your Home with New Lighting

DSC_6395We have noticed that homeowners are often unaware of how important it is to upgrade lighting when they remodel. Did you know that replacing old light fixtures with new ones, along with installing lights in dark areas, can help modernize the look of your home, enhance your living spaces, and increase your home’s sale value? Your home can be changed from dark and dreary to bright and welcoming.

Pearl-36Switching out old light fixtures that are showing signs of age can instantly take years off the appearance of your home. A word of caution though–trendier styles of lighting are more likely to go out-of-style sooner than conservative choices. You may want to go with the trendier selections to enhance the value of your real estate if you are planning to sell in the near future.

In addition to modernizing the look of your home, improving your lighting layout with specialized lighting fixtures can enhance the safety of your home, increase your sense of security at night, and make it easier to complete certain types of activities.

B0038116Ideas for new lighting options:
▪ Replacements for all existing lighting, creating themed décor.
▪ Functional lighting in the entranceway and alcoves of your home.
▪ Dimmer switches in rooms where you don’t want the light glaring in your eyes, such as the bathroom in the middle of the night.
▪ Spot lighting over the bed to enable nighttime reading.
▪ Recessed lighting to highlight otherwise dreary corners.
▪ Overhead fixtures in closets and pantries.

If your landscape is in need of some brightening up, consider enhancing your home’s curb appeal with low-level lighting to illuminate pathways around the home or to accent garden fountains or sculptures. Low-level lighting can be pointed upward to accentuate the walls of the home or stately trees. Since it shines directly where needed, it does not encroach on the night sky to the same extent as lights that flood the entire yard.

B0058789Please feel free to discuss your lighting needs with us.

Bob Sturgeon

 

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Choose Your Contractor with Care

It is an interesting, but sobering fact that a sizable percentage of Westside Remodeling’s annual income comes from fixing failed work done by others. As an example, we once fixed a problem where another contractor installed a sliding glass door without a header—believe it or not.

In another instance, we made a shocking discovery while working on a kitchen remodel. The homeowners were completely unaware that, in order to relocate a drain line for the kitchen sink, the previous contractor had cut away all the support studs for the wall. The only thing holding up the house was the stucco!

Examples of Poor Workmanship — Photos Courtesy of This Old House

My most unforgettable situation involved a woman who told us Westside came highly recommended, but she decided to use another remodeler. He had given her a lower price, and by using his services she could afford to remodel her master bath in addition. Six months later, she called us in tears, “Would you come out and look at this disaster!” Nothing in her house was completed; a giant pile of debris stretched from the front entrance through the living room; boxes of plumbing fixtures with missing parts were stacked one on top of the other. Before the framing was completed, the remodeler had been installing cabinets just so he could get another check. He never pulled any permits. He did this to several people and then left the country. Westside agreed to take the job, which involved cleaning up the mess and tearing out the shoddy workmanship. The homeowner ended up paying us more than our original bid.

Examples of Poor Workmanship — Photos Courtesy of This Old House

Examples of Poor Workmanship — Photos Courtesy of This Old House

When it comes time for your remodeling project, you don’t want to worry that someday you’ll be telling your own personal remodeling horror story. From the very beginning, you want assurance that your contractor will do things right the first time and stand behind their work should something go wrong. The National Association of the Remodeling Industry (NARI) has a list of questions on their website that you should ask of potential contractors.

We also recommend that you do the following before hiring:
• Visit the Contractor State Licensing Board to check on the state of the remodeler’s license. Make sure the license is active and valid.
• Check for workman’s compensation insurance.
• Check for liability insurance. Ask the contractor to show you his insurance certificate and look to see that it’s up to date.
• Ask for references, and go look at the finished work. Pay special attention to how the details are handled where different materials intersect—for example, where a tile floor meets a cabinet.
• Know if you will have an on-site supervisor or if the job will be run from an office. Westside uses the Lead Carpenter system, for example.
• Understand how the contractor facilitates communication between the various trades.
• Ask if he gives a guaranteed completion date and lifetime warranty on workmanship
• It is helpful if the contractor is local, so you know he will be there for you, if you have needs.

Remember this: quality and service come at a higher initial price. Low-ball bids are invariably the result of corner-cutting. Choose your contractor with care, and you will save money down the road by avoiding expensive and invasive repairs in the future.

Just like you, I’m also amazed at how much things cost nowadays. The only thing that costs more is when you have to do it again!

Bob Sturgeon

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