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Bathroom and Kitchen Design in Dallas

You can recognize a great looking bathroom or kitchen design and would love that look for your home. Millwood’s own in-house designer, Graham Smith, has 4 decades of residential interior design and construction experience and his expertise is provided on each project.

Our Design Philosophy

  1. Space Planning
  2. Simplicity
  3. Let the Feature be the Feature
  4. Traditional or Contemporary?
  5. The Right Materials
  6. Eclectic or Just Plain Weird?
  7. En Vogue or Passe?
  8. Collaboration

Space Planning

The first thing to consider in any design is PRACTICALITY

Kitchen Planning

For a kitchen, it is essential to create a fluid working space where 2 or more people can function simultaneously. The classic ‘work triangle’ still holds true today, where the sink, worktop and cooktop/oven are close together for efficiency. Homeowners today also require large open spaces, to the den for example. Large islands with seating for 4-5 people is more the norm. In fact, the traditional ‘nook’ dining table is becoming rarer. This may be a good thing as the nook space can be used to extend the kitchen itself with more workspace and storage. There are many examples on this website.  All kitchen remodels include a full plan and 3D renderings (see example below, with actual finished project)

Sharon H Bath After - 2

Bathroom Planning

For master bathrooms, we have seen a surge of customers wanting to remove the traditional large tub (which is rarely used) and create a large sumptuous double shower with 2 shower systems and potentially a large rain shower head. Often these are “walk-in” with no door and no threshold. Vanities now feature deep large drawers for towels and products. Large LED mirrors are also replacing traditional mirrors and vanity lights. We can help you design the perfect layout, and we have the skills to complete large, complicated projects involving removing walls, construction, and plumbing/electrical installations.

Simplicity

There is no bigger adage than “too much of a good thing”! In general, we try and go for an integrated look which means not too many different color/material choices. For example, a good rule is no more than 3 tile choices in a bathroom. Shower walls and bathroom floors look better if the same tile is installed. Alternatively, you may want to use a wood look tile on the floor which can look very inviting. Plus, the shower base is different tile such as a mosaic. Accents should be just that… ACCENTS! Used sparingly. Like jewelry and accessories on a beautiful dress or suit. Again, we can guide you on all these choices. In fact, one of our main responsibilities is to help you avoid expensive mistakes!

Let the Feature be the Feature

We often use (sparingly) some interesting mosaic or pencil tile to create a highlight, for example, as a shower tile border or niche. A common “mistake” is to extend that feature too far, into other areas such as around the tub, or having 2 or more lines of glass mosaic or similar running through a beautiful, tiled wall. You may LOVE a particular mosaic pattern but like seasoning in cooking, too much is a bad thing especially when it is in your meat, potatoes AND vegetables!! Be gentle with the seasoning (I mean features).

Traditional or Contemporary?

This is usually the first choice which guides all other decisions. Are we going down the “Traditional” road (i.e. earthtones, browns, beiges, stone etc.), the “Contemporary” road (whites/grays, Carrera quartz, glass, etc.) There are “Transitional” designs but better to pick one style and use the other colors lightly. Once we know your preference, we’ll help you with tile selection, cabinet colors, and countertops. We can bring samples of cabinet doors, tile, grout and paint colors to see in your own home. We welcome input from our customers including choosing tile and paint. We’ll help make sure it all works together for a cohesive look.

The Right Materials

We prefer to use better quality materials. The finish is better, lasts longer and are more reliable. There is a price premium, but you’ve probably also heard of “Buy cheap. Buy twice”! One of our favorite quotes (by Sir. Henry Royce, of Rolls Royce fame) is “The quality will remain long after the price is forgotten”. How appropriate as 98% of ALL Rolls Royce’s ever made are still on the road!  The same goes with faucets (Kohler, Delta, Moen), paint (Sherwin Williams ProMar), Grout (Mapei premixed, ready sealed, antimicrobial agents, non-mold), shower glass (with Enduroshield coating for easy cleaning) and so on. In additional we ALWAYS replace water shutoff valves with new ¼ turn valves. The last thing you need is a leaky valve. We have hundreds of satisfied clients over the years who will testify to the quality  and longevity of our work, and we love going back to visit a customer years later and seeing how well their kitchen/bathroom is looking.

Eclectic or Just Plain Weird?

We like to offer some “out there” ideas, but, there has to be a point to it. We recently completed a major bathroom remodel for a young couple. Other contractors suggested the usual. Rebuild the shower, change out the tub and vanities and so on. However, we could see they had an opportunity to push out the entire bathroom wall about 2 ft. This meant we could build a superb “wet area” which features two complete shower systems with 2 rainshower heads, and a freestanding tub. It is a “walk-in” shower which means no door, but with a floor to ceiling glass panel to keep the water in. Just WOW! We also installed a “floating vanity” with LED mirror and LED lighting under the cabinets. So fabulous, and the owners are thrilled. It also fulfilled ALL of the choices and parameters mentioned in the above sections. Integrated, contemporary, minimal fuss and high quality materials.

En Vogue, or Passe?

We have been removing brass faucets and hardware for years, replacing  them with brushed nickel or oil rubbed bronze fixtures. Chrome has recently made a big comeback, as well as brushed gold for faucets and cabinet pulls. Oil rubbed bronze has receded in popularity somewhat. Tile choices have become very interesting, as we are installing more “large format” tile which can be as large as 24” x 48” in size (or even larger). Lighting has also changed dramatically. Gone are incandescent bulbs replaced by all LED. New bathrooms often feature combined LED lighting on the edges. Wallpaper has mostly disappeared but for powder rooms may be a good idea and depends on the pattern. How about a chandelier in the bathroom? We’ve installed several. However, in kitchens and nooks we mostly remove hanging lights in favor of small, recessed ceiling LED lights. We may use 10-16 in a typical remodel (called “distributed lighting”). Let’s talk about what’s in vogue, and likely to be popular for many years.

Collaborative Approach

It’s YOUR home we are remodeling.  We never forget that it’s YOUR choice and we want you to be happy for many years!! Our job is to help design, manage and complete the project(s) in a timely manner. It has to be a win-win for everyone so we are all friends at the end!

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