Northwest Renovation Magazine

A Home Improvement Magazine


For many Portlanders, a kitchen remodel is a chance not only to update appliances and aesthetics, but also to reconfigure the flow of an older home and bring it in line with how we live today. With multi-purpose bars or nooks to serve multi-tasking modern families, today’s kitchen is much more than just a place to prepare food. Photo by Anna M. Campbell Photo by Anna M. Campbell Photo by Anna M. Campbell Photo by Matt Niebuhr Photo by Matt Niebuhr Photos by Matt Niebuhr In... more

A lot of remodeling contractors do not let their homeowners do any work on their projects because — ostensibly — they say that the owner’s workmanship might make their project “look bad.” (And, in some cases this is true!) Or, they say, it is hard for the contractor to schedule around owners who are doing some of the work themselves, because the owner may or may not be able to get his or her part of the project done in a timely manner. (This, too, is true sometimes.) And, they say, they... more

“More is better” has been losing popularity in our increasingly downsizing culture, but making it work in our homes can be tricky. We have learned to eat less, but more nutritionally. We know to conserve more natural resources and waste less in unnecessary purchases. Our culture has embraced the idea of frugality, yet we find it difficult to practice when it comes to home design. Just as people need information to change their daily eating and consumption habits, so we need to learn to live well... more

Do you shudder when you take a sip of the water out of your kitchen faucet? There’s a good reason. Contaminants in our drinking water are at an all-time high and funding for our drinking water infrastructure is at an all-time low. Homes built prior to 1986 may have lead in the pipes or in the fixtures. Even newer homes are serviced by older distribution systems, which means the water must pass through pipes filled with rust, lead, and other contaminants before reaching your faucet. The chlorine... more

We knew we had our work cut out for us when we wholeheartedly agreed to collaborate on the redesign of this 1950s kitchen. Tom and Hilary, owners of this wonderful Mid-Century Modern ranch in Portland, OR, had specific ideas when it came to the new design. Having worked as a professional chef in her mother’s French restaurant while growing up, Hilary had precise notions of how a kitchen should function, and function it does! By implementing a few hard and fast commercial kitchen... more

Wall decorations go back to the days when people lived in caves. There, on the stone walls, are the images of hands and animals. Mystical beings look out at us as artistic memories of that time and place. Although the Chinese were using decorated rice paper to embellish their walls for thousands of years, the story of wallpaper in Europe started with the use of beautiful tapestries that were hung to both bring beauty into the space and act as a form of insulation. Castles with stone walls were cold!... more

There has always been a blending of decorative arts with functionality in the design of domestic kitchen tools, everything from painted scenes in the glazes of ancient clay vessels to the graceful curves in hand wrought iron kitchen tools. The Shakers, for example, were known for blending simple elegance with form and functionality in a way that parallels that of ancient Japanese artistry. General Electric marketed the first electric toaster in 1909. It was simply known as the D-12. Of the three... more

With the current economy forcing people to stay in their homes because they can’t afford to sell them, we see some new trends in the remodeling industry. Before 2008, it was common for people to spend $50K or more remodeling their kitchens, and being able to recoup the investments when they sold their houses a few years later. That all changed with house prices plummeting four years ago. This kitchen involved moving the range out of the island and the refrigerator from where the range is... more

Click Cover to view a Digital Version of the current issue.