Dallas Home Remodeling Style – Mediterranean Kitchen Design

One of the favorite features in the traditional Mediterranean kitchen is beautiful ceramic or terra cotta tile work. To get a truly Mediterranean feel you might choose a single color tile with a decorative shape for the floor or colorful tile with a simple design for the backsplash. In a cool colored kitchen, tile offers a great opportunity to add warmth, personality and an exciting focal point into your design.

Consider “Reclaimed” Wood

Reclaimed wood can add warmth and depth to any kitchen. Beams and dark wood elements are often seen in a traditional Mediterranean design. Why not add multiple reclaimed wood elements like shelving, beams, molding, and furniture to create multiple focal points.

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Use Black Hardware in a Contemporary Style

Wrought iron is a staple in traditional Mediterranean design. Often wrought iron decorative elements like brackets and railings are used to accent the wood and tile. For a more contemporary look, wrought iron hardware can add a modern element to a traditional style. Don’t be afraid to use distressed hardware, especially if the other elements are crisp and new.

Consider Open Shelving Instead of Upper Cabinets

Open shelving can add a feeling of openness to your kitchen design. Plus you get the added benefit of introducing other design elements of color and pattern to your space with decorative plates, glassware, and pottery. Floating shelves can add a clean, contemporary feel to a Mediterranean design by providing balance to the larger, heavier details.

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Modernize With Contemporary Lighting

Lighting is the perfect way to update and modernize your kitchen space. Moving away from more traditional lighting elements to ones featuring a contemporary shape can give you the best of both worlds. When shopping for fixtures, look for ones that complement the style of your kitchen using materials and colors that match your choices of color and materials. Make sure to go beyond standard fixtures and consider adding ambient elements like flush spotlights and under cabinet lighting.

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For Contrast, Introduce Modern Furniture

Bright modern furniture can freshen up your space and add an interesting element to a traditional classic style. Swapping out dark wood tables or chairs for brighter more contemporary furniture can drastically change the vibe and style of your kitchen. The simple clean lines of modern design furniture can add a fun element that feels fresh and contemporary to create your own unique Mediterranean style!

Don’t Forget To Accessorize!

One of the wonderful elements of the Mediterranean style is the creative use of eclectic elements to decorate the space. Accessories like interesting ceramic pieces, flower patterns, copper and of course wrought iron are the perfect design element for a true Mediterranean style kitchen.

Consider hanging beautiful copper pots and pans from a wrought iron rack to add visual pop to the central work area. Tapestries, paintings, photographs and other artwork the feature the Mediterranean countryside can provide an old and elegant look for a more rustic approach. Whatever your style or aesthetic taste, the Mediterranean kitchen lends itself to creative personalization.

If you’re planning a kitchen remodel, consider the creative style that the Mediterranean kitchen design can bring. Whether you’re striving to achieve a dark, elegant, traditionally rustic look, or the eclectic combination of traditional and modern design, the Mediterranean kitchen is the perfect style for you!

If you want to learn more about our Dallas Kitchen Design and Remodeling services, call us today through (800) 371-8970 or schedule an appointment to speak with one of our qualified professionals by submitting the form. 

7 Remodeling Mistakes That Can Avoid By Using a Design Builder

Costly Home Remodeling Mistakes A Design Builder Can Prevent

Planning a home remodeling project can be an exciting time for any homeowner. We all want to create a living environment that meets our needs, expresses our personal style and is the perfect place to create lasting memories with our family and friends.

Planning your project and putting together a team is the most important elements of a creating remodeling. If it’s an extensive project, you may need to hire an architect, interior designer, and general contractor. Or you can choose to work with a design builder and get all three from one firm.

Even a simple home remodeling project can be a challenging and complicated affair. Working with a design builder can make the process run more smoothly and help you to avoid common mistakes that can cost you in both time, and money.

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Here are seven mistakes you can avoid by working with a design builder on your next project.

1.     Your Creative Vision is Unclear

One of the most common mistakes is not knowing exactly what you want. A design builder will work closely with you to understand your creative vision. Their design team will learn about your lifestyle, understand your needs, and help to flesh out your creative vision before hammering a single nail. They will have knowledge of current trends, the latest technology, and will help you to maximize your budget so you can afford the luxuries you dream of while keeping your project on track.

2.     Hiring A General Contractor, Before Considering All The Possibilities

You’ve decided on your project and have begun to vet builders. You meet a contractor and you hit it off. He seems nice and knowledgeable so you sign a contract. Choosing the first contractor that comes along is never a good idea. You should vet several, check their references and their work. A professional design builder is an option that you should explore before signing any contract. Because they can handle every aspect of your project from design, to planning, budgeting and construction, working with a design builder can often be a much smarter choice. Let’s meet up for a free consultation! Submit the form and we’ll contact you by the next business day.

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3.     Choosing A Design Builder Based on Price

Money is always a subject when it comes to a home improvement project. While a contractor can come in with a low price, is it really a bargain? A general contractor may not provide needed architectural services, that’s an additional expense. What about interior design? Another additional cost. Working with a design builder, when you receive a proposal, it will clearly break out all of the services you can expect. You’ll receive a comprehensive project plan and budget, along with contingencies and clear policies for change orders and additional costs.

4.     Not Working With A Designer

If you hire a general contractor, they might not have the depth of design experience that your project might require. The first half of “design-build” is design! You can be sure that when working with a full-service firm that they will have the design experience to understand and define your creative vision and help you to achieve it. They will also have a deep understanding of the latest trends, materials, finishes, and technologies available and can work with you to suggest high-quality alternative materials that can deliver the look you want while stretching your budget.

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5.     Starting a Project Without A Contract and a Plan

This is common sense, but you should never start a project without a detailed plan and a binding contract. When you work with a design builder you can rest assured that every element of your project including costs, the scope of work, the order work will proceed, material costs, design costs, and every other aspect of your project will be clearly outlined and delivered in the form of a formal contract. Your contract will include any contingencies for additional costs like change orders, or upgrades.

6.     Compromising Your Vision

You’ve probably been saving up for your project for years, or you are paying for it with a home equity line or loan that will take years to repay. You’ve developed your creative vision and now it’s time to get started. The last thing you want is a contractor to steer you away from your creative vision towards a finish or layout that is not what you want. Working with a full-service design builder means that your vision and budget will always be top priorities. They can help you to maximize your budget by creative choices in materials or can work to get you discounts so your vision is realized.

7.     Not Staying Involved In The Process

As the homeowner, you’re the most important member of the team when you work with a design builder. From the earliest parts of the process, your design builder will turn to you to learn about your needs, lifestyle, and vision. They will consult with you throughout the design process and conduct regular walkthroughs of the job site. You may be asked to sit in on the planning meetings and scheduling. Your design builder will always be available to answer any questions and will contact you if questions arrive on site.

Talk to us to learn more (800)-371-8970 about your home remodeling in Dallas! 

Partnering with a design builder for your next home improvement project is a smart move. You can often stretch your budget because all services are provided in-house. That means no additional costs for architects, engineers, or designers.

Because all services are in-house, your budget can be maximized. Decisions can be taken at quickly when the architect is down the hall from the builder (or maybe even the same person!). They work closely with you to make sure that your creative vision is met and have the talent, expertise, experience, and knowledge to provide the highest quality craftsmanship and deliver your project on time and on budget.

If you’re seeking a high-end design builder to remodel your kitchen, master suite or an entire home, contact us at (800) 371-8970 or click here! Joseph & Berry are Greater Dallas’s preeminent design-build firm and has completed hundreds of bathroom projects.

What To Look For In A Home Remodeling Warranty

What To Know About Your Design-Build Firms Home Remodeling Warranty

For many homeowners considering a remodeling project, their decision is often based on factors like cost, references and project history. For your next project, when vetting potential contractors, consider examining the warranty they offer as a part of your decision making process. Often, the warranty alone can point you toward the best choice for your remodeling project.

Think about it. What does an insufficient warranty say about the company behind it? Contractors that are constantly returning to a job site to fix faulty construction typically don’t offer extended warranties on their projects. A remodeling company that offers a warranty that is longer than required by state law, shows that they stand behind their workmanship. Choosing the less expensive company, with the shorter warranty may save you money up front, but in the long run, it will cost you more to hire a second firm to come in and fix their work after the warranty is up.

Choosing a remodeler with an extended warranty covers you both ways. A company that offers an extended warranty typically doesn’t have to come back and fix their work, and when a problem does arise, a good home remodeling warranty protects you by guaranteeing that the problem gets solved at no additional cost to you.

Want to learn more about our design build process for your home remodeling in Dallas? Click Here

Here are a few things to look for in both good and bad remodeling warranties.

Get It In Writing!

You wouldn’t proceed on a remodeling project without a written estimate and a contract with your builder. A home remodeling warranty is no different. Make sure they will stand behind their work… in writing! A “workmanship warranty” covers both work and materials, typically the contractor agrees to cover any defect, including both the labor and materials needed to correct a problem during a designated time period. Contractors expect to have to return to a job site for a few issues like caulking that cracks after it dries. For efficiency, they’ll often suggest that you wait long enough to create a list so they can fix everything in a single visit.

A typical workmanship warranty covers anything that was damaged due to poor workmanship, like cracks in a floor or surface that wasn’t properly installed. What workmanship warranties do not cover are materials or appliances that fail on their own. Those are covered by the manufacturer’s warranty. You may want to ask your contractor if they will provide the labor needed to remove and replace a failed appliance or fixture that is replaced by the manufacturer.

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What Isn’t Covered in Your Home Remodeling Warranty

What work warranties generally do not cover is any damage caused by the homeowner, although it is still worth asking your contractor to take a look if something breaks after an accident. For instance, if you knock something off of the kitchen counter and it cracks a floor tile, you might have to pay for the repair. However, by contacting your contractor, he may determine that the tile cracked because there wasn’t enough mortar used by the subcontractor. In this case, an honest contractor should take responsibility to fix the mortar and replace the tile.

If you provide your contractor with fixtures or materials for a project, they may not be willing to warrant any work required if those fixtures fail, such as water damage caused by a defective faucet that leaks.

Ultimately, your home remodeling warranty is only as reliable as your contractor. That’s why trust and reputation are important when making your choice. In addition, having a solid well written contract, confirming that they carry the proper licensing, and are insured and bonded is important. A reliable contractor will have no problem providing you with references from past clients. Make sure you ask for, receive and contact several references before signing any contract.

Here at Joseph & Berry, we work hard to build relationships with our clients that last a lifetime. We stand behind the quality and workmanship of every project and we are one of the few contractors in the country that offer our customers a lifetime warranty.

Most remodeling companies in Greater Dallas, and throughout the country do not warranty their work. At Joseph & Berry – Remodel, Design Build we value our clients and believe that every one of them deserves the very best we have to offer. So we hold ourselves to a higher standard. We are so confident in our work that we warranty it, for life! Want to learn more? Contact us to schedule your complimentary consultation!

Your home is your biggest investment and choosing the right contractor is a major decision. We’re honored when you choose Joseph & Berry for your home improvement project. We bring our clients award-winning design, attention to detail and the finest state-of-the-art construction techniques to every home we work on. We promise to give every client a world-class experience unsurpassed in the industry and we back up that promise with one of the only Lifetime Warranties in the business.

A TRUE Lifetime Warranty For Remodeling

At Joseph & Berry, we’re always just a phone call away. However, if we don’t hear from you when your project is completed, you’ll hear from us! We always schedule a return visit in twelve months to stop in, say hello and check our work. If you have any issues, we’ll take care of them, for free. In fact, we’ll cover repairs due to material defect for as long as you live in your home. We work hard to build relationships with our clients and our lifetime warranty really does last a lifetime!

If you’d like to learn more about our lifetime warranty, our team, or to discuss your upcoming remodeling project, give us a call at (800) 371-8970 or submit the form and we’ll contact you.

 

 

Designing a Walk-in Closet for A Master Suite Bedroom and Bath

Design tips for a walk-in closet that makes a master suite more functional and less cluttered

One home improvement that can add real convenience to your life, and value to your home when it comes time to sell is a luxurious walk-in closet in your master suite. Whether you’re remodeling your master bedroom, adding an addition to create a luxurious master suite, or considering converting a spare room, a large walk-in closet can help keep your clothing organized, make getting ready for work in the morning, or cocktails at night a more pleasurable, efficient experience. And your clothes will last longer too!

Let’s look at what you’ll need to consider before turning that spare room or extra space in the bedroom into a master suite walk-in closet.

Your Walk-in Closet: Layout And Space Needs

You’ll need to do a little planning to determine how much space you’ll need. Start by assessing your storage needs. Here are some tips to get you started.

  • Start with Your Clothes – This is important. You want to make sure that you’ll have enough space to gently and comfortably store your belongings. The depth of your cabinets and racks will range from 14 to 24 inches to accommodate your clothing. Most items including shirts, blouses, jackets, and coats will require at least 24-inches. Anything less won’t properly fit your clothing.

Base your design around the clothing you own. For example, folded sweaters and shirts will need between 9 and 15 inches of linear space; coats can require 68 inches of vertical space, pants and jeans need 50 inches of vertical space and skirts can require 45 inches.

  • Figure Out How Many Double and Single-Hang Sections You’ll Need – to maximize storage in your walk-in closet, take inventory of how many long dresses, winter coats and jackets you own to determine single space needs. Then look at skirts, shirts, pants, blouses, and slacks to make sure you have enough double hung space.
  • Think About The Corners! – Corners are tough. They can be utilized for additional storage with proper planning. Corner shelves can help you to use this space. Consider hanging ties or handbags, or even store suitcases. When you’re investing in your closet, you want to utilize every possible inch of space. Don’t forget the corners!
  • If You’re Converting A Spare Room, Consider an Island – If you have enough room, an island can be an excellent addition to your walk-in closet. Ideally, you’ll need 36 inches of space on each side of the island, but you can get by with as little as 24. The more clearance space you have, the more functional you can make your island. With 36 inches of walk around space, you can include pull out drawers which can house sweaters, delicates, jewelry or more.
  • Don’t Forget the Cubbies – Cubbies are an excellent addition that can house sweaters, shoes, handbags, and other items. If you have lots of boots, remember to include taller cubbies on the bottom to accommodate storage.
  • Think About Fun Functional Additions When Planning – Benches, dressing tables and makeup mirrors, specialized storage, a full-length dressing mirror and other functional touches can personalize add a level of luxury to your space. Don’t forget proper lighting, ventilation, and decorative touches like art or hidden speakers for your enjoyment.

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Think About Location

Unless you’re planning a master suite addition, proximity is important. While technically you can put your walk-in closet in any unused or unusual space, like the attic, your first choice should be to keep it attached to the master bedroom.

Ideally, using the bedroom closest to the master bedroom is the best option. This allows you to close off the room from the rest of the house and create an opening in the master bedroom as an entry. Closing off a room and creating a doorway is an easy renovation that can be reversed to convert the closet back into a bedroom if you decide to sell in the future.

The most important thing to remember, no matter whether you’re taking space from the existing master, building an addition or converting a bedroom, is to make sure you have the minimum space available. Most master walk-in closets range between 5 to 12 feet (or more) in width. The minimum width allows you to have a 3-foot hallway if you hang all of your clothing on one side. Depth can vary from 5 to 17 feet of depth depending on your situation.

The room’s dimensions will help to determine what amenities you can include. For example, f you’re converting a bedroom, the windows can reduce the hanging space available, however adding a dressing table can be a great option. Natural light is perfect for applying makeup or getting a real feel for a piece of clothing’s color!

Adding a walk-in closet to your master bedroom is a great project that can make your life more organized and increase the value to your home. If you’re unsure where to start, or need ideas, contact us and speak to one of our designers. They can review your existing space and explain all of your options. At Joseph & Berry, we are experts at designing functional walk-in closets for master suites four our Dallas area clients. Contact us to schedule your free consultation.

 

Attaining The Perfect Home Remodel | A Planning and Process Guide

Perfect Home Remodel | Planning & Process Guide Are You Planning a Home Remodel? Here Are Some Tips to Get You There Successfully!

Perfect Home Remodel | Planning & Process Guide
Perfect Home Remodel | Planning & Process Guide

A home remodel can be a bit overwhelming. It’s a complex job filled with product and color choices along with the task of maintaining a budget and finding the right design build firm to complete the work, Perfect Home Remodel | Planning & Process Guide

Whether you’re considering a kitchen remodel, creating the perfect master suite, or adding an addition, with planning, research, a developed creative vision, and the right contractor, you can complete your project successfully and create the perfect space for you and your family to enjoy for many years to come.

The following steps can help you to plan and execute a successful home remodel.

FIRST, DEVELOP YOUR CREATIVE VISION

Even before you seek out a contractor, have a plan. Start to develop a creative vision for your project. Your entire project from planning, design, and budget comes down to your knowing exactly what you want at the beginning of the project. Be prepared to answer questions like the following;

  • What is the overall style you are looking to achieve? Choose something you’ll want to live with for years to come. (Traditional, Contemporary, Country, Vintage)
  • Will I need an addition or is my current footprint large enough? (Where will you put that soaking tub?)
  • Am I looking for the best materials and appliances or will the standard be good enough? (6 burner Wolf cook top with in-wall oven or 4 burners GE Cafe range?)
  • Will my home remodel require taking down walls and moving the kitchen or bathroom locations? (Moving mechanical systems will add to the cost.)
  • What type of flooring fits your lifestyle and aesthetic? Hardwood, natural stone tile, carpet?)
  • Are you seeking a statement home with custom exotic wood kitchen cabinets with a hand rubbed finish or something more conventional?

Make a master file and start clipping photos of spaces that you like regarding design, style, and décor. Go through home, design and architecture magazines. You can also do a lot of the work online. Sites like Houzz allow you to create digital “Idea-books” that you can fill with relevant photos from the site.

This pre-planning research can work in your favor when you begin the process of building your team. By giving your designer your master folder, you can develop a commonality of vision and language right from the beginning of your project. By choosing “must have” elements from your files, you can begin to develop your budget. Your designer may have ideas that can meet your aesthetic needs while keeping you within your budget.

WORK WITH A PROFESSIONAL DESIGNER

To successfully execute a major home remodel you need a detailed plan and scope of work. Hiring an architect, interior designer, or better yet, a design-build firm is a significant step in the process. Each can play a role in your project.

While every company does things a little differently, many designers work on projects that don’t involve major structural work. They can also offer assistance with materials and colors. Architects may take on a large range of work, or specialize for example only working on floor plans and permits leaving the electrical plans and plumbing to the contractor.

Choosing to work with a full-service design/build firm can mean a single source for your entire project. A design/build firm handles every phase of your project all in-house from the physical design of your space to planning and permitting, creating a realistic budget, construction and even interior design. When you’re considering your project, look at all of the possibilities, including hiring a design/build firm!

Perfect Home Remodel | Planning & Process Guide
Perfect Home Remodel | Planning & Process Guide

SELECTING THE RIGHT TEAM FOR YOUR HOME REMODEL

Hiring the right people can often be the difference between a smooth, minimally disruptive home remodel and a major disruptive project that can turn ugly! When interviewing firms, there are several things to take into consideration before you sign a contract. The process of vetting can take several weeks depending on how many companies you are interviewing. Make sure you are prepared before any meetings. Have a good idea of what you are looking to accomplish, have a general budget in mind and develop a list of relevant questions to ask each prospect.

You will usually start with an in-person meeting. This is your opportunity to understand the services that each firm offers and make sure they understand your aesthetics and creative vision. It is critical that you have a budget in mind and that you can communicate your expectations to the firm you hire. Make sure you feel comfortable with anyone you choose to work with. Having a good rapport in the interview process is a good first step.

Remember, depending on the scope of work, the workers from the company you choose will be in your home for some time. Working with a company that you can communicate with, understands your needs and design style and can keep disruption to your home to a minimum can go a long way towards a successful project!

If live in the Dallas/Forth Worth Metroplex and you’re planning a home remodel, give the professionals at Joseph & Berry a call! We’re here to help you design a home that will meet your needs for years to come.

Perfect Home Remodel | Planning & Process Guide

How To Choose The Best Kitchen Countertop Material for a Remodel

Choose Kitchen Countertop Material & Remodel Know Your Options When Choosing The Perfect Kitchen Countertop

Choose Kitchen Countertop Material & Remodel
Choose Kitchen Countertop Material & Remodel

Choose Kitchen Countertop Material & Remodel, Whether you’re remodeling your kitchen, giving your existing kitchen a facelift, or building a new custom home, your countertops can set the style and tone of the most important room in the house. If your home features an open concept floor plan, it can even carry your design sense throughout the entire living space.

In fact, countertops are almost as important as the layout of your kitchen. Today, you have more choices than ever before. With a huge variety of human-made and engineered products, as well as natural materials available in every possible color and pattern, you have more options than ever!

While it’s tempting to choose your new countertop based solely on aesthetics, picking your kitchen countertop comes down to four criteria; your style, maintenance needs, the material’s durability and of course the cost. Consider each before making a final choice.

 

FINDING THE RIGHT FIT: DEFINING YOUR NEEDS

Start by examining your lifestyle. While beautiful white Carrara marble is an elegant, luxurious choice, if you have small children who love to come home from school and make peanut butter and jelly sandwiches on the kitchen counter, marble is probably not a good choice for you. Perhaps an engineered quartz or natural soapstone surface might make more sense.

Do you love to prepare food? Will you be chopping and slicing on your surface? Maybe a hardwood butcher block surface, like natural maple is the answer. Looking for an eco-friendly option? Consider solid surface composites like IceStone, Richlite or Paperstone. They are sustainable and release no VOCs. Are you a baker? Marble countertops stay cool and if you like to bake, it is the perfect surface for kneading dough.
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KITCHEN COUNTERTOP OPTIONS TO FIT ANY LIFESTYLE

The good news? With so many great kitchen countertop choices available, even if you have your heart set on a particular material like marble, but it doesn’t match your lifestyle, you can find a similar material like manufactured quartz that can match the pattern and style of natural marble.

Let’s explore some of the popular kitchen countertop options available!

GRANITE

Natural stone is a popular kitchen countertop choice and granite is by far the most popular. Granite countertops come in a wide variety of colors, and every slab is unique. It also comes in several different finishes including, brushed, antiqued, honed (which is a matte finish) and polished for a shiny almost luminescent look. Granite’s cost can vary widely with a common variety like Ubatuba being more affordable than the more exotic Labradorite.

NATURAL STONE

While granite is the most popular natural stone, it’s not your only choice. Marble, limestone, quartzite, and soapstone are great luxurious options, but they are not as durable as granite and will require occasional maintenance like annual sealing. Even truly exotic stone like Onyx is available for your kitchen countertop if money’s no object!

ENGINEERED STONE

Another option is engineered stone. Quartz countertops are made by using chips of stone and resin. They offer the look and feel of natural stone, but are almost bulletproof and come in every color imaginable. You will pay for this durability however as manufactured stone countertops can cost twice as much as the least expensive granite!

SOLID SURFACES

If it’s practicality you’re looking for, solid surface materials might be the right choice. Acrylics like Corian, or newer countertop materials like Paperstone or Richlite (made using recycled paper and resin) are easy to maintain and eco-friendly. We rarely use solid surface materials in our kitchen designs, but they are ideal for laundry rooms where value and practicality are important.

CUSTOM-MADE CONCRETE

A hot trend a few years ago, concrete countertops are at home in a contemporary or industrial design. They can be customized with pigment, stained, acid washed, and polished. It can also be delivered with several different finishes including trowel finished,  exposed aggregate or pressed with a tool that replicates marble like veining. Concrete requires upkeep and needs careful maintenance. A sponge left on the surface can leave a stain, acidic liquids can etch the surface, and sudden temperature changes can cause warping or curling. It also needs to be sealed four times a year, and paste wax should be applied every couple of months.

WOOD COUNTERTOPS

Wood is a traditional material that can warm up your kitchen. Wooden kitchen countertops like maple or butcher block are easy to clean, and small scratches can easily be sanded out. Water can be a problem, so you will need to oil them frequently to keep the surface sealed.

The best option is to try to see and touch the surfaces in person before you make a final decision. Work with a designer and discuss your options. Countertops can be customized with various edge styles. Many designers are their meeting clients needs by combining different materials to create a truly custom kitchen. With all of the countertop choices available and a little help from your kitchen designer, you’re sure to find the perfect kitchen countertop to meet your lifestyle and stylistic needs!

Choose Kitchen Countertop Material & Remodel

Wine Cellar Construction | Keeping Your Collection Safe in Texas

Wine cellar construction tips for home collections

Wine Cellar Construction
Wine Cellar Construction

Wine Cellar Construction ,Heat is enemy number one for wine, and temperatures higher than 70° F will age a wine more quickly than is preferable. With a record high of 113° F, and an average daily high of 77° F, the greater Dallas, TX area is an ideal one for installing a wine cellar in your home. Proper wine cellar construction is crucial for your collection.

WHERE TO PUT A WINE CELLAR

The ideal temperature for wine storage is 55-57° F, and 55-75% humidity. The closer you can get to optimal temperature without too much artificial cooling, the better. Typically, a wine cellar is best built in a basement, as it’s cooler. If your home lacks a basement, it’s still possible to construct one above ground, but you’ll need a larger-size cooling unit. A dry environment also requires more frequent introduction of humidity. In general, a wine cellar should be located where there’s adequate ventilation, no direct sunlight or heat, and at least one external wall.

If you’ve dreamed of building a wine cellar in your greater Dallas, TX area home, here’s what you need to know to bring your vision to fruition.

CRUCIAL ROLE OF THE VAPOR BARRIER

Frequent or sudden fluctuations in wine cellar temperature and humidity are detrimental to the aging process of wine: the resulting excessive oxidation makes wine turn bitter before it can achieve its peak taste. That’s why it’s important to ensure your wine cellar keeps the ambient temperature inside lower than the area outside it. A vapor barrier separates the two environments. On interior walls, a vapor barrier is created by wrapping polyethylene around the studs and applying it to the surface behind the insulation.

INSULATION DURING WINE CELLAR CONSTRUCTION

Think of your wine cellar as a room-sized refrigerator. Proper insulation is key to controlling the temperature and protecting your walls and ceiling, as well as your wine. Thick insulation – a minimum R-22 rating – is best for interior and exterior walls. A minimum rating of R-32 is best for the ceiling. If the walls are concrete, blown-in insulation is recommended, and if the floor might have an impact on the room’s temperature, insulation there should also be considered.

CELLAR WALL AND CEILING COVERING

The wine cellar’s interior wall and ceiling is determined by the overall theme of your cellar. Regular drywall is typically adequate, but if you have humidity concerns, consider moisture-resistant drywall instead. Always use a low VOC latex-based paint to prime and paint the walls and ceiling. If you prefer the look of redwood tongue and groove material, be sure to use rot-resistant wood. Never use cedar, as its strong aroma will taint the wine. Some people also use granite or other stone as a wall covering.
wine-cellar-construction-and-design

CELLAR FLOORING

All types of flooring are used in wine cellars, with the most common being tile, slate, hardwood, marble, and concrete. Never use carpet, as it will mold in the cool, damp conditions. Choose flooring that matches your overall theme and make sure it’s applied to a level surface.

CELLAR DOORS

For proper temperature and humidity control, wine cellars need to be a sealed environment. Otherwise, you’ll end up with a continually running cooling unit, which shortens its life and increases your energy costs. Use an exterior grade door with weather stripping on all four sides. Some environmentally minded homeowners choose reclaimed wine barrel doors.

CHOOSING AND PLACEMENT OF COOLING UNIT

How large a cooling unit you’ll need depends on your wine cellar construction, cellar size, the ambient climate, construction plans, and more. Ideally, it should be mounted on an interior wall. A wood frame is typically constructed to hold the unit, which on average weighs between 50 and 120 pounds. At Joseph & Berry, we’ll help you find the cooling unit that’s right for your cellar.

VENTING

Ventilation keeps your cellar at the optimum temperature. The cooling unit blows cool air into the cellar, which then pushes warm air to the ceiling. That warm air must be moved to a properly-sized exhaust room, or the wine cellar temperature will get too hot. The ideal exhaust room has a fresh air intake that regulates temperature and provides continuous air flow.

WINE RACKS

Racking varies widely, but common woods include redwood and mahogany, as well as reclaimed wine barrels. All are resistant to rot in a cool, damp environment. Some people prefer wire lattice, modular storage, or fully customized wine racks. It all depends on your budget and the overall look you want your cellar to have.

CELLAR LIGHTING

The goal with any wine cellar lighting is minimal heat output and 0% UV rays. A recessed ceiling can lights are popular wine cellar choices, and they should be put on dimmers to control brightness. Timers and motion detectors can also help avoid having the lights left on, which can heat up the cellar over time. LED rope lighting is an attractive choice for highlighting racks.

At Joseph and Berry, we work with homeowners through every step of the wine cellar construction processfrom planning and budgeting through the design and execution of your project. Let us help you create your custom wine cellar! Contact us to schedule an appointment for a design consultation!

 

Celler wall image by akariganphotos courtesy of Flickr