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October 19, 2014 / Ann Porter, CKD

Legrabox by Blum

When it comes to drawer box choices for cabinets, generally there are four choices for consumers.

  • Blum MetaBox – a three-sided drawer with the metal sides functioning as the runners. This tired and true choice is the most economical.
  • Melamine Box – usually a white box doweled together with a choice of runners ranging from vinyl Tandem glides, full-extension side mount glides and concealed undermount glides. The action can be standard or soft-close. Another color choice is dark gray for a European or Contemporary aesthetic.
  • Blum TandemBox – an evolution of the MetaBox and the Tandem concealed drawer runners. This three-sided, double walled drawer offers full extension, soft-close action. The Intivo option can be personalized by using a design element with BoxCover or gallery rail. These drawers are offered in gray and stainless. The new stainless now doesn’t show fingerprints which was a big problem before.
  • Dovetailed Box –  a solid maple or birch box dovetailed on all four corners. Considered an upgrade by most manufacturers, these drawers are usually offered with concealed undermount glides with soft-close action. Many companies now offer a walnut as a luxurious option.

A fifth drawer box option is now available. The LegraBox from Blum features a slim half-inch  (12.8 mm) profile for maximum storage capacity.

New LegraBox |KitchAnn Style

LegraBox features a new innovative, runner system utilizing synchronized drawer profiles for greater running action and performance even under heavy loads.

The LegraBox program consists of three drawer side heights for standard drawers and two drawer side heights for interior roll-out drawers.

New LegraBox Heights |KitchAnn Style

The sleek and noticeably straighter box is offered in two finishes – a brushed stainless steel or a gray matte finish. I am hopeful the black finish available in Europe will soon be offered here.

New LegraBox Dividers |KitchAnn Style

The LegraBox drawer has its own divider system called Ambia-Line. The drawer accessories include cutlery inserts with integrated containers with Softtouch coating and  pull-out frames with magnets for connection to steel as well as wood frames for an elegant contrast. Ambia-Line Kitchen Accessories include a spice holder, foil dispenser, plastic dispense and plate holder.

New LegraBox Ambia-Line |KitchAnn Style


I expect for most manufacturers the LegraBox will fall between the TandemBox and a Dovetail drawer. Adding accessories or glass inserts will obviously add expense.

October 8, 2014 / Ann Porter, CKD

Houzz Marketplace

Fueling the current trend of digitizing the home-remodeling experience, Houzz has raised an impressive $165 million in a fourth round of capital, led by Sequoia Capital, one of its early backers.

Houzz is using its pile of cash and its popularity with home remodelers to fuel a foray into e-commerce. In a new section of its site called Houzz Marketplace, the company will play host to a selection of bathtubs, vanities, backsplashes and other home décor items being sold by thousands of online retailers.

Shopping online | KitchAnn Style

The transactions will all take place on the Houzz site, and the company will keep a 15% cut of each sale. The order fulfillment and customer service will be handled by the sellers.

E-commerce will become the third source of revenue for five-year-old Houzz, which also sells advertisements and charges architects, designers and other home contractors an annual subscription fee for tools to help them engage with potential customers on its site.

Shopping Houzz Online | KitchAnn Style

Selling actual products on its site  is what Houzz  says will make it stand apart from Pinterest, another popular destination for design enthusiasts. I tend to prefer Pinterest over Houzz for collecting pictures and taking a mental break. While I’m interested in seeing the new site design that Houzz has rolled out, I doubt that having products constantly pitched to me is going to be appealing.

I can see how his might appeal to the D-I-Yer more than the Design Professional – especially those who protect ability to source unique finds for their clients.

How do you like the new Marketplace?


October 5, 2014 / Ann Porter, CKD

What I’m Obsessing Over

Bike Hanger | KitchAnn StyleI stumbled across a picture of this hanger and I thought it was a designer’s take on everyday objects modernized for hospitality use. Such as this hanger shown below from Doug Mockett that sells for $41.00. It looks cool, but it’s still just a hanger.

Hanger | KitchAnn Style

It turns out I was completely wrong. This hanger, designed for Biomega, by Paul Crofts Studio is a bicycle hanger for the fashion conscious.

“The products I have designed for Biomega are based on simple twists on everyday objects, from bike clips to a sponge to clean your bike. The design of the bike clip was to be produced from Laser cut sprung stainless steel. An accessory previously overlooked, my aim was to take the object from the mundane and purely functional to a level that was more in tune with jewelry and the quality of the Biomega bikes.”The Designers for Biomega focus on the product goal and general feel instead of the technologies involved. The result is that the Human-Machine interface seems simpler and is more in harmony with your feelings towards the product.

Biomega Bike Hanger | KitchAnn Style


Biomega Bikes

Biomega is a Copenhagen-based, Danish brand of designer bicycles.  launched in 1998 by Jens Martin Skibsted. It is known for engaging international designers from outside the bicycle industry—including Marc Newson, Ross Lovegrove, Beatrice Santiccioli  and Karim Rashid— in designing its products.

Biomega Bikes are the perfect Commuter Bicycles. Featuring Chainless bikes with shaft and belt-drive systems, it is possible to make your commute in fashionable clothing without the need to worry about grease getting on your clothes.  Biomega makes bicycles that are as much a work of art as they are extremely efficient modes of transportation.

Biomega Puma Bike  | KitchAnn Style

Biomega started collaborating with Puma under Antonio Bertone’s creative supervision. Skibsted designed the initial Puma bike, known as BOS / Boston for the Biomega portfolio. A folding mechanism allows the bike to be reduced in size by fifty percent to fit in tight spaces. Its main feature is a lock that is integrated within the structural framework. If a would-be thief breaks the lock, the bicycle breaks as well.

Biomega Bos Bike  | KitchAnn Style


Recently The NYC bike, designed by KiBiSi – a design firm co-founded by Biomega’s founder, Jens Martin Skibsted, the architect Bjarke Ingels, and industrial designer Lars Holme Larsen. was launched at Eurobike and Interbike 2014.

The NYC / New York city bike is based on Biomega’s innovative CPH / Copenhagen design, but reengineered it to include functions that make commuting safer and more comfortable. The NYC incorporates chainless cycling with its carbon fiber belt drive that transfers power to the rear wheel. While classic in silhouette, the NYC utilizes a integrated front mudguard within the aluminum down tube.

Both the New York Museum of Modern Art (MOMA) and the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMoMa) have Biomega bicycles in their collections.



October 1, 2014 / Ann Porter, CKD

Calacatta Nuvo

Caesarstone’s interpretation of natural Calacatta marble, Calacatta Nuvo brings you wide, elegant, cascading, grey veins on a white opaque base.

Calacatta Nuvo 5131, available nationwide this fall, comes in 20mm polished slabs 56.5″ x 120.”

Calacatta Nuvo Bathroom | KitchAnn Style

Calacatta Nuvo makes an unforgettable impression and upgrades any interior design into a masterpiece. This latest design from Caesarstone offers the beauty of luxurious natural stone with the ease of Caesarstone care and maintenance.

Its hard, nonporous surface makes Caesarstone simple to clean. In most cases, soap and water or a mild detergent is all that is required to maintain its luster. If necessary, apply common, non-abrasive, household cleaners such as Soft Scrub Liquid Gel with Bleach or Comet Soft Cleanser Cream With Bleach directly on a damp cloth or sponge and wipe the surface, rinsing thoroughly after cleaning.

Caesarstone products come with Limited Lifetime Warranty as long as your material is permanently installed inside your primary residence and not used as flooring. If you prefer your local fabricator add a honed finish to your slab be aware that this could void your warranty.

Calacatta Nuvo Bathroom | KitchAnn Style

Calacatta Nuvo Bathroom | KitchAnn Style


September 28, 2014 / Ann Porter, CKD

Appliance News

GE sells Appliance unit to Electolux | KitchAnn styleGeneral Electric (GE) recently announced it is in an agreement to sell its home appliances business to Swedish white-goods group Electrolux for $3.3 billion.

It’s hard to imagine GE, a household name for more than a century, leaving the consumer appliance industry.

This deal is a major shake-up in the home appliance industry, pairing the second- and third-largest companies in the industry.

Under the deal, GE has a long-term agreement with Electrolux  to keep using the GE Appliances brand alongside its own Frigidaire brand in an attempt to leverage the company’s long history.

Although the boards of directors of both companies have approved the transaction, it is subject to closing conditions and regulatory approvals, and is due to close next year.

Electrolux said the acquisition, the single biggest deal it has made, represented “an attractive strategic fit” for its operations in North America, expected to generate “significant synergies” particularly in procurement and day-to-day running of the combined business.


GE has sold devices to people for its entire 122-year history, starting with the light bulb, which was invented by company founder Thomas Edison. The lighting division will stay, but it’s just a tiny part of GE. Now GE will sell its products almost exclusively to other companies.

GE is the only remaining member of the Dow Jones Industrial Average, first calculated in 1896. But, GE has frustrated shareholders by underperforming both the Dow and broader stock indexes for much of the last decade.

There was no mention of what would happen to FirstBuild  which is a partnership between GE Appliances and Local Motors to create a new model for the appliance industry and manufacture those designs in its Microfactory.

ann and sam at monogram experience centerMy trip to the Monogram Experience Center last October.  Being able to cook on
the appliances is an incredible educational tool and meeting designers and dealers
from around the country was very insightful.


September 21, 2014 / Ann Porter, CKD

Nouveau Rebel

It’s hard to believe a year ago I was attending the London Design Festival and visiting amazing showrooms. How can a year go so quickly?  One showroom tour I really enjoyed was Lee Broom in Shoreditch.

This year Lee Broom launched a new collection of lighting and objects at Electra House, his flagship store, under the tongue in cheek title, ‘Nouveau Rebel.’

“I named the collection Nouveau Rebel as it is a material favored by the traditional art world and also the nouveau riche. I like the tipping point between these two worlds, and I wanted to create contemporary products that use the material in new ways whilst referencing 80’s styling and traditional production methods”

The lighting features diffusers made from hollowed out Carrera marble. A light source inside illuminates the stone’s veined surface from behind.

Lee Broom Marble Lighting | KitchAnn Style

The collection includes Chamber pendant lights, a spherical Dome light and a linear light called Tube.

The Tube Light is made from a cylindrical piece of marble  that is just six-millimetres thick along its length, with LED bulbs inside and bronze caps on each end.

“It’s a marble take on a fluorescent light,” said Broom. “It’s probably the difficult piece in the collection to make because its using one long piece of marble.”


Nouveau Rebel Lee Broom Marble Tube | KitchAnn Style

 Lee Broom Marble Lighting | KitchAnn Style
Nouveau Rebel lighting at the launch party at the Ace Hotel

September 17, 2014 / Ann Porter, CKD

Energy Star and Water Sense Sales Tax Holiday

There’s a  sales tax holiday this weekend for Energy Efficient Appliances  and Water Sense Products September 19 – 21, 2014 starting at 12:01 a.m.

Floridians will pay no sales tax on purchases of up to $1,500 of ENERGY STAR appliances and WaterSense products. However, a person is limited to a single purchase of each specific type of Energy Star or WaterSense product that has a sales price of $500 or more. There are no quantity limits for qualifying items with  a sales price less than $500.

Qualifying ENERGY STAR products|KitchAnn Style

Qualifying ENERGY STAR products:
Air purifiers
Ceiling fans
Clothes washers
Light bulbs
Room air conditioners
Swimming pool pumps
Water heaters
Qualifying WaterSense products:
Bathroom sink faucets
Faucet accessories
High-efficiency toilets and urinals
Weather- and sensor-based irrigation controllers









Dryers are not listed because they do not meet Energy Star qualifications. Installations Charges may be tax exempt too. It get’s a little tricky but if you purchase a qualifying product that does not become part of the home and remains tangible personal property when installed, the item plus the labor are exempt if their total is less than $1,500.

Example: An Energy Star window air conditioner unit for $350 plus $100 install. The $450 total purchase qualifies.

Example: A WaterSense toilet is sold by a contractor for $465 with installation for $125. The $590 total does not qualify.

If you want to buy a Service Warranty on your new Dishwasher, it too may be exempt. If the retail sale of an item is exempt from tax, the charge for a service warranty sold with the item is also exempt when the total is less than $1,500.

WaterSense products|KitchAnn Style

Understanding Coupons and Rebates.  The price of a qualifying item is not limited to the amount paid by a customer.

Example: The Energy Star refrigerator you want is $1,795. The retailer is offering 10% off. Your purchase of $1,615.50 qualifies for the first $1,500 to be exempt. You pay sales tax on the remaining $115.50

Example: You purchase an Energy Star freezer for $1,549. The manufacturer is offering an instant $50 rebate at the time of purchase. Although you pay $1,499, the price remains the same for the retailer. They will receive $1,499 from you and $50 from the manufacturer. The first $1,500 is exempt and you pay sales tax on the remaining $49.

If the retailer – not the manufacture;, were offering the rebate in the example above, the $1,499 purchase would have been tax exempt.


If you like to shop on the internet the good news is that if your order is accepted within the holiday period for immediate delivery, it qualifies for exemption – even if it ships after the tax holiday ends.

Shipping and handling charges are part of your purchase total and follow the same exemption rules. If you purchase multiple items on a single receipt, the shipping and handling charges must be fairly assigned to each item to determine if an item is exempt during the holiday.

September 14, 2014 / Ann Porter, CKD

AirRenew Gypsum Board

With all the talk about VOCs, tighter homes and the need for make up air, who isn’t concerned about indoor air quality (IAQ) these days?

Many things in a home’s interior can off-gas — including new furniture, paint, carpeting and cabinets. New aldehydes can also be brought into the space through air fresheners, cleaning agents, clothing and other daily household items. Breathing in these chemicals on a regular basis may be dangerous to one’s health.

CertainTeed offers a drywall that actually improves indoor air quality. AirRenew’s new technology takes VOCs out of the air and converts them into safe, inert compounds. Once they are captured in the board, they cannot be released back into the air.

AirRenew | KtchAnn Style

Rather than off-gassing formaldehyde and other VOCs, AirRenew Gypsum Board has industry-first VOC-scavenging technology that removes these chemicals from the air, breaking them down and storing them inside the wall through a process that’s effective for about 75 years, the company says.

The gypsum board also features M2Tech technology, which provides enhanced protection against moisture and mold.

There’s no practical way to eliminate all mold and mold spores in the indoor environment, but using AirRenew with dual technologies greatly reduces the potential for mold problems.


AirRenew | KtchAnn Style

AirRenew continues to effectively clean air even when used with multiple coats of water based acrylic or epoxy paints and breathable wallpaper.

The AirRenew portfolio of products includes a wide range of performance attributes, such as resistance to fire, mold, moisture, abuse and impact. The product line up features: AirRenew Essential, AirRenew M2Tech®, AirRenew M2Tech Type X, AirRenew Extreme Abuse as well as AirRenew Extreme Impact. Each product handles the same as regular gypsum board and does not require special tools to install or finish.

AirRenew Essential comes in a 1/2-inch gypsum board, and AirRenew Essential Type X, a 5/8-inch fire-resistant gypsum board.

AirRenew boards are GREENGUARD® Gold Certified, can contribute to LEED building credits and contain up to 99% total recycled content.

Improves indoor air quality and protects your walls from everything life throws at them.


Recently, celebrity remodeler Mike Holmes and son Mike Jr.  featured the product in his two-hour episode  “Mike’s Ultimate Garage” on HGTV Canada.

Holmes used CertainTeed AirRenew Extreme Impact Indoor Air Quality (IAQ) Gypsum Board as the interior walls of the 1850 square foot garage.

AirRenew | KtchAnn Style


“I’ve been planning my dream garage for years. My son MJ went over and above what I’d even envisioned to make sure I ended up with an amazing man cave. I know I’ll be spending every minute of my downtime there,” said Mike Holmes. “With the cold Canadian winters I’ll have to keep the garage doors closed most of time. It’s good to have peace of mind that AirRenew will help keep pollutants out of my lungs. And the extra durability is a great thing, in case I am hard on my workshop.”


Mike's Ultimate Garage| KtchAnn Style

Mike knows the ultimate man cave requires quality materials. 

September 10, 2014 / Ann Porter, CKD

Cree Recalls LED Light Fixtures Due to Lens Breaking

Cree Inc. is recalling about 10,000  CXB Series LED high-bay indoor light fixtures due o the possibility the glass lens will break and cause laceration hazard. The recall is for model numbers CXB-23L-40K-U-1-HC and CXB-23L-40K-U-1-JP.

Cree lighting recall 2014| KitchAnn Style

These lights are 16″ x 18″ x 7″ and are used mostly in commercial and retail settings. The affected products can be identified by the manufacturing lot number found underneath the UPC label on the rim of the fixture.  Only products with a manufacturing lot number starting with the following codes are included in this recall:

AG45, AG48, AG49, AG50, AG51, AG52
AH01, AH02, AH03, AH04, AH05, AH06, AH07, AH08, AH09, AH10, AH11, AH12, AH13, AH14, AH15, AH16, AH17, AH18
L1H01, L1H02, L1H03, L1H04, L1H05, L1H06, L1H07, L1H08, L1H09, L1H10, L1H11, L1H12, L1H13, L1H14, L1H15, L1H16, L1H17, L1H18

Cree lighting recall 2014| KitchAnn Style

These lights were manufactured in China and sold through wholesale electrical distributors and lighting contractors from January 2014 through April 2014 for approximately $350.

If your lights are part of this recall, stop using the light fixtures immediately and contact Cree for free replacements. Cree is contacting purchasers directly. Cree Technical Support toll-free at (800) 425-4653 from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. CT Monday through Friday or

September 7, 2014 / Ann Porter, CKD

Colormix 2015 Inspiration: Unrestrained

From bold, ethnic-inspired colors and designs to the Bohemian lifestyle, the Unrestrained palette celebrates a carefree spirit, wanderlust and pulsing color. The palette features saturated primary hues, including sunny yellow, lively turquoise and bright blue, as well as black and white. Each can be used on its own for a pop of color, or combined, to create a vibrant, energetic space.

Unrestrained - colormix forecast 2015 | KitchAnn Style

South Africa’s colorful art scene and focus on the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro have strongly influenced a Carnival-like spirit. This spirit is inspiring design with a zest for life, and the vibrant colors of Unrestrained are a reflection of that design aesthetic,” – Jackie Jordan. director of color marketing, Sherwin-Williams

 More Unrestrained Color Inspiration

Unrestrained Colormix Theme Bedroom | KitchAnn Style
Love the throw and the chair color with the yellow lamp


Unrestrained Colormix Theme Dining Room | KitchAnn Style

Turquoise makes this room pop

 Unrestrained Colormix Theme Outdoor Room | KitchAnn Style

Bohemian Chic Outdoor Space

Unrestrained Colormix Theme Dining Room | KitchAnn Style
An Entrance that Pops with a Tanger Sofa

Unrestrained Colormix Theme Island | KitchAnn Style

Vibrantly Painted Kitchen Island

Unrestrained Colormix Theme Living Room | KitchAnn Style

Amazing Bold Paint Color with Yellow Mantel

Unrestrained Colormix Theme Tiles | KitchAnn Style

Unrestrained is a perfect description for this bathroom


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