Inspiration

Disappearing Microwaves

Monday, August 4th, 2014

Lately, I’ve been spending my hours just thinking about microwaves. Yes, I do that, I sit down in a chair, cup my chin in my hand, look up to the ceiling, and think about microwave ovens. About their placement in kitchens and *gasp* even their necessity.

The microwave oven as we all know has become a staple in the American home in the last 40 years, they are the most convenient appliance for a quick reheat and in my experience, they make a great baked potato. I’ve asked friends this question, "How often do you use your microwave?" For some the answer is "several times a day" for others "not much at all".

The reason I’ve been thinking so much about them is that I’m getting rid of the micro hood in our Nevada house we’re remodeling, at least temporarily, and for two reasons. First, it’s black, and I’ve decided to use all white appliances in this kitchen.

nevada house oak kitchen cabinets

While I endorse the two tone cabinetry look, I do prefer that the finishes on appliances are the same, so the range is getting replaced with a white slide in to complement the existing dishwasher and refrigerator (not shown) and the black microwave is leaving. Both the range and microwave hood will be sold on Craigslist or donated to Habitat, and the cabinets will eventually be replaced, but not until winter. 

Second, I’m not a huge fan of the micro hood. I do see its purpose in a smaller kitchen, it makes sense, but I do prefer the look of just a hood by itself above a range or cooktop and so I’m seeking ways to include a microwave in the kitchen’s new design but I want to make it disappear, at least from prominent view.

In my search of inspiring ideas I found many clever ways to hide the microwave so that it is available when needed but also hidden from sight. 

white kitchen wood flooring

hidden microwave in cabinet

remodelista

A special appliance pantry is the most appealing idea, with doors that retract into the cabinet so they can sit inside while the appliance is in use.

hidden microwave behind cabinet

better homes & gardens    

Read the rest of this entry »

Thinking About… an Outdoor Shower

Thursday, July 24th, 2014

Exhausted, we took a break from demo yesterday to sit by the pool and we watched the kids playing in the water as we talked about different ideas for future improvements. The topic turned to outdoor showers – they have a way of leaving an impression, especially the ones from favorite vacations.

We so loved the bamboo walled outdoor shower at the Kauai beach cottage and many years ago we visited a dear friend in Siena, Italy, she had a simple outdoor shower on the side of her small home with a view of the valley in Tuscany, dreamy! We got to thinking that with a pool (or a beach or lake nearby), it makes sense to have an outdoor shower for the practicality and ease of rinsing off and I started thinking about tucking one into a corner and then started searching online for different ideas. 

I just love these outdoor showers, some open, some private, all they require are a shower head and a perch for soap/shampoo and towels… oh yeah, and that little detail called new plumbing…  

corner outdoor shower

mcalpine booth & ferrier

 

outdoor shower billfry

bill fry construction

 

  outdoor shower

hus & hem

 

porch outdoor shower

rethink design studio

  

ebony stain outdoor shower

skona hem

    

Read the rest of this entry »