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Step Up Your Stairway Style with 5 Design Ideas

By | Custom Home Construction, Custom Home Design, Uncategorized

Staircase Design Ideas from Orlando Custom Home Builder Jorge Ulibarri:

This metal contemporary staircase makes a sculptural statement accented with glass art on the walls in this home. For more design ideas by Orlando Custom Home Builder go to www.cornerstonecustomconstruction.com

This metal contemporary staircase makes a sculptural statement accented with glass art on the walls in this home.

Today’s floorplans showcase the staircase as the focal point of  the room serving as functional sculpture. No longer relegated to the back of the home as uninspired utilitarian features, the latest staircase designs merge art and engineering to defy the limits of the standard banister and baluster system. Orlando Custom Home Builder Jorge Ulibarri designs the staircase in each of his custom homes as an attention-getting architectural feature and shares a few ideas to inspire your own stairway style:

Transparent railings:

Acrylic or glass rail stair systems create a contemporary, clean silhouette drawing focus to the stair risers and treads. This staircase has no hand rails, opting instead to encase the steps behind a tempered glass wall for safety and visual effect.

This floating staircase is encased in a glass wall that negates the need for hand railings. For more design ideas by Orlando Custom Home Builder go to www.cornerstonecustomconstruction.com

This floating staircase is encased in a glass wall that negates the need for hand railings.

See-through stair railing systems can draw focus to feature walls such as this one crafted of stacked stone and the floating wood steps. “Stair feature walls crafted of wood, stone, tile or decorated with art add visual drama and replace the outdated accent wall painted a different color that was once popular in main living spaces,” says Ulibarri, who is building a contemporary home with a white stacked stone stair feature wall and glass railing system.

Floating wood stair treads and glass panels convey organic contemporary style complimented by a stacked stone feature wall and wood sculpture in the 2016 New American Home. For more design ideas by Orlando Custom Home Builder go to www.cornerstonecustomconstruction.com

Floating wood stair treads and glass panels convey organic contemporary style complimented by a stacked stone feature wall and wood sculpture in the 2016 New American Home.

Floating wood stair treads and acrylic panels with wood hand rails mix materials as an architectural feature in this home. For more design ideas by Orlando Custom Home Builder go to www.cornerstonecustomconstruction.com

Floating wood stair treads and acrylic panels with wood hand rails mix materials as an architectural feature in this home.

Cable Railing Systems:

Stainless steel modular staircase by Marretti.For more design ideas by Orlando Custom Home Builder go to www.cornerstonecustomconstruction.com

Stainless steel modular staircase by Marretti.

Metal railing systems with horizontal or vertical cables, crossbars, mesh or perforated metal in aluminum, brass, iron, steel or stainless steel go great with contemporary and industrial-styled interiors.  Metal designs come in a variety of finishes— polished, brushed, satin or powder coated and with fasteners and fittings in interesting shapes. Mix materials by adding handrails of wood or plastic.

Wood and aluminum rail staircase in the Responsive Home, a concept home in Las Vegas. For more design ideas by Orlando Custom Home Builder go to www.cornerstonecustomconstruction.com

Wood and aluminum rail staircase in the Responsive Home, a concept home in Las Vegas.

Floating Stairs:

Stairs that appear suspended without supporting structures below are popular designs because they work well with traditional styles and contemporary styles.

This floating staircase curves to stylishly accommodate a narrow space in the foyer. For more design ideas by Orlando Custom Home Builder go to www.cornerstonecustomconstruction.com

This floating staircase curves to stylishly accommodate a narrow space in the foyer

Under the Stairs Wine Storage:

Jorge Ulibarri suggests making the most of under-stair space with creative storage features such as a wine cellar. “Typically, the space under the stairs is large and deep enough to build a walk-in wine storage room with refrigeration and a tasting bar. Under the stairs wine storage is one of the most in-demand features in my homes, ” says Ulibarri, who is building a contemporary home with under-stair wine storage crafted of glass doors with display lighting.

Orlando Custom Home Builder Jorge Ulibarri designed and built this staircase in a Lake Nona home with a walk-in wine storage room. For more design ideas by Orlando Custom Home Builder go to www.cornerstonecustomconstruction.com

Orlando Custom Home Builder Jorge Ulibarri designed and built this staircase in a Lake Nona home with a walk-in wine storage room

 

Orlando Custom Home Builder Jorge Ulibarri designed and built this staircase in a Lake Mary home with a walk-in wine storage room. For more design ideas by Orlando Custom Home Builder go to www.cornerstonecustomconstruction.com

Orlando Custom Home Builder Jorge Ulibarri designed and built this staircase in a Lake Mary home with a walk-in wine storage room

For more design ideas and inspiration, subscribe to Orlando Custom Home Builder Jorge Ulibarri’s video series, Trade Secrets.

Lake Nona Residence

By | Custom Home Construction, Custom Home Design, Kitchen Design, Uncategorized

Jorge Ulibarri Custom Homes Introduces Its Latest Custom Residence on Beautiful Lake Hart in Lake Nona

 5,300 square foot custom home located on an envious waterfront lot on stunning Lake Hart in Lake Nona, Orlando, Florida. Designed and built by Orlando luxury home builder, Jorge Ulibarri. www.imyourbuilder.com

5,300 square foot custom home located on an envious waterfront lot on stunning Lake Hart in Lake Nona, Orlando, Florida. Designed and built by Orlando luxury home builder, Jorge Ulibarri.

This 5,300 square foot custom home is located on an envious waterfront lot on stunning Lake Hart in Lake Nona, Orlando, Florida. Designed and built by Orlando luxury home builder, Jorge Ulibarri, the home is framed by moss-draped oak trees in a storybook setting. The owner wanted to take advantage of the picturesque lake views by opening all of the main living spaces to the outdoors.  “I wanted the architecture to create a sense of arrival that feels as if one has traveled to the secluded beauty of a country manor or Tuscan estate. The home’s stone tower entry and precast accents, custom-made, wrought-iron, double door give it a sense of history and grounded character,” says Jorge Ulibarri, owner of Cornerstone Custom Construction, a luxury home building company based in Heathrow, Florida. Through architectural photos, we invite you on a tour of this 4 bedroom, 4 bath home with a style that respects Florida’s regional architectural language and infuses the latest looks in home interiors.

The two-story grand room opens to the kitchen with a double-height fireplace and wood beams in a grid design anchored by two geometric chandeliers in this home designed and built by Orlando Luxury Home Builder Jorge Ulibarri. www.imyourbuilder.com

The two-story grand room opens to the kitchen with a double-height fireplace and wood beams in a grid design anchored by two geometric chandeliers in this home designed and built by Orlando Luxury Home Builder Jorge Ulibarri. www.imyourbuilder.com

The ceiling treatment in the grand room draws the eye up to the grid of beams and two geometric chandeliers, an open hallway bridges the two wings of the home upstairs overlooking the tower entry and grand room. The home was designed and built by Orlando Custom Home Builder Jorge Ulibarri. www.imyourbuilder.com

The ceiling treatment in the grand room draws the eye up to the grid of beams and two geometric chandeliers, an open hallway bridges the two wings of the home upstairs overlooking the tower entry and grand room. The home was designed and built by Orlando Custom Home Builder Jorge Ulibarri. www.imyourbuilder.com

The kitchen in this Lake Nona custom home designed and built by Orlando Luxury Home Builder Jorge Ulibarri features a transitional design with gray cabinets and white quartz countertops that stand in contrast with the kitchen island crafted of espresso wood and gray and white granite. The kitchen features a barrel ceiling of travertine stone and wood beams and an eat-in breakfast bar. www.imyourbuilder.com

The kitchen in this Lake Nona custom home designed and built by Orlando Luxury Home Builder Jorge Ulibarri features a transitional design with gray cabinets and white quartz countertops that stand in contrast with the kitchen island crafted of espresso wood and gray and white granite. The kitchen features a barrel ceiling of travertine stone and wood beams and an eat-in breakfast bar.

The kitchen's gray and white color palette makes it feel fresh and modern with stainless steel appliances, fittings and fixtures. The home was designed and built by Orlando Custom Home Builder Jorge Ulibarri. www.imyourbuilder.com

The kitchen’s gray and white color palette makes it feel fresh and modern with stainless steel appliances, fittings and fixtures.

A two-story tower foyer makes a grand entrance pouring in natural light from a crown of windows. The wrought iron staircase echoes the design of the custom made wrought iron and glass door in this home designed and built by Orlando Custom Home Builder Jorge Ulibarri. www.imyourbuilder.com

A two-story tower foyer makes a grand entrance pouring in natural light from a crown of windows. The wrought iron staircase echoes the design of the custom made wrought iron and glass door in this home designed and built by Orlando Custom Home Builder Jorge Ulibarri.

The masterbath features a free standing tub that fronts a double-entry shower with gray base cabinets and white and gray granite countertops in this custom home designed and built by Orlando Luxury Home Builder Jorge Ulibarri. www.imyourbuilder.com

The masterbath features a free standing tub that fronts a double-entry shower with gray base cabinets and white and gray granite countertops in this custom home designed and built by Orlando Luxury Home Builder Jorge Ulibarri.

The formal dining room in this Lake Nona home designed and built by Orlando Custom Home Builder Jorge Ulibarri.

The formal dining room in this Lake Nona home designed and built by Orlando Custom Home Builder Jorge Ulibarri.

Barn doors painted white with stainless steel hardware open to the media room and the hallway with a barrel travertine tile ceiling. The home was designed and built by Orlando Custom Home Builder Jorge Ulibarri. www.imyourbuilder.com

Barn doors painted white with stainless steel hardware open to the media room and the hallway with a barrel travertine tile ceiling.

Remodel of 1989 Home Into Tuscan Jewel

By | Custom Home Construction, Custom Home Design, Uncategorized | No Comments

Orlando Custom Builder Jorge Ulibarri Transforms Outdated Home into Tuscan Jewel

The before and after picture of the facade of a 1989 home that Orlando Custom Home Builder Jorge Ulibarri remodeled into a stunning custom Tuscan residence located in the gated community of Heathrow, Florida. For more information, go to www.imyourbuilder.com

The before and after picture of the facade of a 1989 home that Orlando Custom Home Builder Jorge Ulibarri remodeled into a stunning custom Tuscan residence located in the gated community of Heathrow, Florida. For more information, go to www.imyourbuilder.com

Orlando Custom Builder Jorge Ulibarri discovered an architectural jewel in the gated community of Heathrow, Florida several years ago in need of a makeover and some TLC. “The home is located in a picturesque and highly desirable neighborhood of moss-covered oak trees and unique custom homes but this one was very outdated. It was stuck in a weird place between the worst of the 80s and 90s taste and style but the home had good bones and a lot of square footage all on a single floor with a rear entry garage. Those are rare features in today’s new homes where the garage is placed on the front of the home in order to squeeze the house on a lot and square footage is stacked in two stories instead on one. I think front facing garages detract from the home’s facade and so in my book, that’s a deal breaker when I look for a home to remodel,” says Ulibarri, who bought the home in 2007 began extensive renovations.
The before and after pictures of the remodel of a 1989 outdated home into a Tuscan custom residence by Orlando Custom Builder Jorge Ulibarri. www.imyourbuilder.com

The before and after pictures of the remodel of a 1989 outdated home into a Tuscan custom residence by Orlando Custom Builder Jorge Ulibarri. www.imyourbuilder.com

Ulibarri took the home down to the studs and reframed the interior adding sleek architectural curves and arches. He removed all of the popcorn ceilings to create custom ceiling treatments in wood, stone and with beams. He resurfaced all fireplaces and replaced outdated carpet with travertine floors to transform this outdated home into a Mediterranean custom residence.
The before and after pictures of the remodel of a 1989 outdated home into a Tuscan custom residence by Orlando Custom Builder Jorge Ulibarri. www.imyourbuilder.com

Before and after pictures of the original living room and entrance in the 1989 house remodeled by Orlando Custom Home Builder Jorge Ulibarri. www.imyourbuilder.com

In the entrance, Ulibarri created a step down and added a wrought iron custom front door and railing to divide the space between the entrance and dining room. He added a niche, arches and architectural curves and replace carpet with travertine floors and a floor medallion for a visual focal a point. On the dining room ceiling, Ulibarri added beams after removing the home’s original popcorn ceilings.
The before and after pictures of the remodel of a 1989 outdated home into a Tuscan custom residence by Orlando Custom Builder Jorge Ulibarri. www.imyourbuilder.com

The before and after pictures of the remodel of a 1989 outdated home into a Tuscan custom residence by Orlando Custom Builder Jorge Ulibarri. www.imyourbuilder.com

In the kitchen dining area, Ulibarri removed the outdated space-age looking recessed ceiling over the dining table and replace it with a circular stone niche that holds a wrought iron fixture. The original ceiling over the range had a soffit with flourescent light panels. Ulibarri removed that ceiling and created a warm wood beam to frame the space. He resurfaced the eat-in bar top with stone mosaics and the kitchen island with a contrasting granite countertop and added a sleek stainless steel rangehood.

The after picture of a kitchen remodeled by Orlando Custom Home Builder Jorge Ulibarri www.imyourbuilder.com The original outdated kitchen was built in 1989. This new Tuscan kitchen features mosaic stonework, wood beams, rich wood cabinets and granite countertops with a modern sleek rangehood.

The after picture of a kitchen remodeled by Orlando Custom Home Builder Jorge Ulibarri www.imyourbuilder.com The original outdated kitchen was built in 1989. This new Tuscan kitchen features mosaic stonework, wood beams, rich wood cabinets and granite countertops with a modern sleek rangehood.

Ulibarri added a wine cellar to the home by taking extra space from the guest bathroom located behind the cellar and reframing the space into a walk-in wine cellar in the formal living room.

Orlando Custom Home Builder Jorge Ulibarri remodeled a 1989 outdated home and created a wine cellar from wasted space in the bathroom located behind the cellar.   The wrought-iron door is custom made and imported by Ulibarri's team of metal artisans in Mexico and can be ordered through his website www.imyourbuilder.com

Orlando Custom Home Builder Jorge Ulibarri remodeled a 1989 outdated home and created a wine cellar from wasted space in the bathroom located behind the cellar. The wrought-iron door is custom-made and imported by Ulibarri’s team of metal artisans in Mexico and can be ordered through his website www.imyourbuilder.com

The formal living room made the most dramatic transformation with wood plank ceiling and grand wrought-iron chandelier and a floor-to-ceiling stone fireplace. Notice the how the architectural arches bring a touch of Old-World forms to the space. During the remodel, Ulibarri completely redid all of the home’s interior walls replacing outdated rectangular entrances with graceful arches and curves.  Ulibarri replace carpet throughout the home with travertine floors.

The updated Tuscan formal living room in a 1989 home remodeled by Orlando Custom Home Builder Jorge Ulibarri. www.imyourbuilder.com

The updated Tuscan formal living room in a 1989 home remodeled by Orlando Custom Home Builder Jorge Ulibarri. www.imyourbuilder.com

In the master bath Ulibarri resurfaced the tub platform in stone mosaics and added faux finish to the walls. He reframed the window to create an arch and added a niche.

The before and after of the master bath in the remodel of a 1989 home by Orlando Custom Home Builder Jorge Ulibarri www.imyourbuilder.com

The before and after of the master bath in the remodel of a 1989 home by Orlando Custom Home Builder Jorge Ulibarri www.imyourbuilder.com

In the master bedroom, Ulibarri resurfaced the fireplace surround in stone accented with a wood beam, replaced an out-of-style ceiling fan with a wrought iron fixture, removed the popcorn ceiling and added crown moulding and replaced the carpet with travertine floors for a much warmer look with a rich blend of textures.

The before and after pictures of the master bedroom in a 1989 home remodeled by Orlando Custom Home Builder Jorge Ulibarri www.imyourbuilder.com

The before and after pictures of the master bedroom in a 1989 home remodeled by Orlando Custom Home Builder Jorge Ulibarri www.imyourbuilder.com

The 3,800 square foot home wraps around a pool and outdoor living space. Ulibarri kept the original blue and white Spanish decorative tile on the pool edge and he resurfaced the pool deck with travertine pavers and added a pergola and blue fountain pots in place of the outdated diving board.

The before and after pictures of the outdated swimming pool transformed into a resort-style retreat in a 1989 home remodeled by Orlando Custom Home Builder Jorge Ulibarri www.imyourbuilder.com

The before and after pictures of the outdated swimming pool transformed into a resort-style retreat in a 1989 home remodeled by Orlando Custom Home Builder Jorge Ulibarri www.imyourbuilder.com

The pool’s blue and white Spanish tile became the design theme for the Cobalt blue outdoor living room decor.

The new outdoor living space of a 1989 home remodeled by Orlando Custom Home Builder Jorge Ulibarri . The outdoor dining room and outdoor living room feature Cobalt blue decor from Frontgate. For more information,  go to www.imyourbuilder.com

The new outdoor living space of a 1989 home remodeled by Orlando Custom Home Builder Jorge Ulibarri . The outdoor dining room and outdoor living room feature Cobalt blue decor from Frontgate. For more information, go to www.imyourbuilder.com

The new outdoor living space of a 1989 home remodeled by Orlando Custom Home Builder Jorge Ulibarri . The outdoor dining room and outdoor living room feature Cobalt blue decor from Frontgate. For more information,  go to www.imyourbuilder.com

The new outdoor living space of a 1989 home remodeled by Orlando Custom Home Builder Jorge Ulibarri . The outdoor dining room and outdoor living room feature Cobalt blue decor from Frontgate. For more information, go to www.imyourbuilder.com

In the top photo is the original exterior of the 1989 home remodeled by Orlando Custom Builder Jorge Ulibarri. The photo below shows the home’s new Tuscan facade. Ulibarri kept the original tile roof and added stone to the facade to give it a Tuscan flair and removed the outdated stucco bands

The before and after picture of the facade of a 1989 home that Orlando Custom Home Builder Jorge Ulibarri remodeled into a stunning custom Tuscan residence located in the gated community of Heathrow, Florida. For more information, go to www.imyourbuilder.com

The before and after picture of the facade of a 1989 home that Orlando Custom Home Builder Jorge Ulibarri remodeled into a stunning custom Tuscan residence located in the gated community of Heathrow, Florida. For more information, go to www.imyourbuilder.com

Indirect Lighting for Direct Impact

By | Building Green, Custom Home Construction, Custom Home Design, Fireplace design, Kitchen Design, Mod-Mediterranean Design, Uncategorized | No Comments
LED lit coves in the barrel ceiling on this hallway cast a soft glow on the glass tile edges of the travertine barrel drawing focus to key architectural details in this Mod-Mediterranean home designed and built by Orlando Custom Home Builder Jorge Ulibarri

LED lit coves in the barrel ceiling on this hallway cast a soft glow on the glass tile edges of the travertine barrel drawing focus to key architectural details in this Mod-Mediterranean home designed and built by Orlando Custom Home Builder Jorge Ulibarri

LEDs provide new opportunities for lighting small spaces once inaccessible by bulb technology. Because these semiconductor chips are miniscule but pack a lot of light, they are illuminating living spaces in ways we’ve never seen before. Orlando Custom Home Builder Jorge Ulibarri is in the final stage of constructing a Mod-Mediterranean home that is the perfect canvas for indirect lighting. “We used LED tape lights to create illuminated silhouettes that draw the eye to architectural details,” explains Ulibarri who designed the 4,800 sq. ft. home as a fusion of Old World and contemporary design.

LED light kitchen in this Mod-Mediterranean Home designed and built by Orlando Custom Home Builder Jorge Ulibarri

LED light kitchen in this Mod-Mediterranean Home designed and built by Orlando Custom Home Builder Jorge Ulibarri

The home’s elevation is Spanish-Mediterranean but the interiors showcase clean lines, sleek fixtures and finishes such as glass mosaics mixed with rustic beams, travertine floors and other raw natural materials.

“Lighting design plays an important role in creating the Mod-Mediterranean style. It has to be done right, with a modern, edgy allure that melds with more rustic features. LED indirect lighting creates that contemporary vibe in a traditional setting,” says Ulibarri.

LED tape lights illuminate the kitchen cabinets inside, above and below in this Mod-Mediterranea home designed and built by Orlando Custom Home Builder Jorge Ulibarri

LED tape lights illuminate the kitchen cabinets inside, above and below in this Mod-Mediterranean home designed and built by Orlando Custom Home Builder Jorge Ulibarri

In the kitchen, Ulibarri added LED tape lighting to the interior, top and bottom of the upper cabinets as well as the bottom of the kitchen island for toe kick lighting. When lit from within, the frosted glass cabinet panels cast a soft glow in the kitchen. LED indirect lighting in the open kitchen provides added illumination without casting distracting glare on the flat screen TV in the adjoining living room. “LEDs work well in the kitchen because they provide a powerful light source without giving off a lot of heat. Keeping the temperature down in kitchen is a challenge because you have to balance the need for light with other heat radiant sources such as the oven and range. LEDs give off less heat than other light sources such as halogens and incandescent lights,” explains Ulibarri. Consider that a typical incandescent bulb runs at 200 degrees above room temperature.

LED Tape light

LED Tape light

LED Tape consists of a dot of light spaced approximately every 5/8 inch. The quality of LED chips varies in terms of the light conducting phosphorous coating (a proprietary recipe that differs among each manufacturer). Ulibarri installed high quality LED Tape light with a color temperature of 3000K at an approximate cost of $18 per liner foot for materials and installation. Prices vary depending on the complexity of the project and installation.

Led tape lights illuminate the sides and decorative inset of this Mod-Mediterranean fireplace designed and built by Orlando Custom Home Builder Jorge Ulibarri

Led tape lights illuminate the sides and decorative inset of this Mod-Mediterranean fireplace designed and built by Orlando Custom Home Builder Jorge Ulibarri

Ulibarri installed LED tape light to illuminate the sides of the soaring Mod-Mediterranean fireplace, a centerpiece that anchors the aesthetic. LED tape light also illuminates the built-in glass tile mosaic and glass inlay above hearth.

In the hallway, LED tape lights hidden in the barrel ceiling cove cast a soft glow on the travertine tile framed in glass tiles.

LED lit barrel ceiling in the hallway of this Mod-Mediterranean home designed and built by Orlando Custom Home Builder Jorge Ulibarri

LED lit barrel ceiling in the hallway of this Mod-Mediterranean home designed and built by Orlando Custom Home Builder Jorge Ulibarri

No matter what your style, any home has several “sweet spots” for LED lighting, areas where LEDs are practical and economical.  Terry McGowan, DirectorEngineering & Technology
American Lighting Association, offers the following ideas for LED lighting:

–       Portable task lights

–       New or retrofit downlights in ceilings

–       Under and over-cabinet lighting

–       Interior cabinet lighting

–       Indirect lighting – particularly in coves

–       Outline lighting (for example, outlining a door so it can be seen at night for orientation)

LEDs can product light colors in the entire spectrum and come in a color temperature measured in Kelvins (K) in a range of 2700K-6500K. As a general rule when selecting the right LED lighting, remember: the higher the Kelvin number, the bluer the light will appear. The lower the Kelvin number, the warmer the light appears. LED lighting opens up new possibilities in lighting design. These are just a few ideas for  inspiration to show you the potential of this energy-efficient lighting tool.

 

 

 

 

 

Barrel Ceilings That Raise Eyebrows

By | Custom Home Construction, Custom Home Design, Kitchen Design | No Comments
Brick multibarrel ceiling in kitchen of a home designed and built by Orlando Custom Builder Jorge Ulibarri

Brick multibarrel ceiling in kitchen of a home designed and built by Orlando Custom Builder Jorge Ulibarri

A Checklist to Determine if the Barrel Ceiling is the Right Choice

The latest in home design is all about raising sight lines with architectural details. Ceiling treatments that make you look up are the main ingredients of a well-designed home. This attention to the details above is evident in the popularity of the barrel ceiling. “As a custom builder, I get many requests to create a barrel ceiling in the kitchen or a home’s passageways. This type of ceiling treatment has many incarnations that offer homeowners options for materials and price points. The barrel ceiling requires certain bones in a home: truss support, ceiling height etc. Before going forward with this ceiling design option, here is a checklist to determine if the barrel ceiling will work well for your living space,” says Orlando Custom Builder, Jorge Ulibarri. 

Ceiling Height:

faux painted multibarrel ceiling in kitchen of a home designed and built by Orlando Custom Builder Jorge Ulibarri

faux painted multibarrel ceiling in kitchen of a home designed and built by Orlando Custom Builder Jorge Ulibarri

It’s important to take into account the height of your ceiling because the barrel ceiling will lower the height by 18 inches. Here’s why: the design requires a 12 inch drop to accommodate the radial barrel and 6 inch drop at the end of the barrel to accommodate the beam.

Ceiling Structural Support:

Brick veneer single barrel ceiling in a home designed and built by Orlando Custom Builder Jorge Ulibarri. This single barrel ceiling works well for hallways.

Brick veneer single barrel ceiling in a home designed and built by Orlando Custom Builder Jorge Ulibarri. This single barrel ceiling works well for hallways.

Not every home’s infrastructure is built to accommodate the design and weight loads of a barrel ceiling. If you want to retrofit or remodel a room to include a barrel ceiling, then you have to reinforce the existing trusses to accommodate the loads or weight of the barrel ceiling. This adds significantly to the cost of the barrel ceiling and should be factored into the budget.

Room Layout:

The barrels must align with the kitchen island and lighting fixtures. Pictured here is a brick multibarrel ceiling in a home designed and built by Orlando Custom Builder Jorge Ulibarri

The barrels must align with the kitchen island and lighting fixtures. Pictured here is a brick multibarrel ceiling in a home designed and built by Orlando Custom Builder Jorge Ulibarri

One of the biggest challenges with this type of ceiling that must determined in advance is the layout of your room. The kitchen is the number one choice to showcase a barrel ceiling. The challenge in the kitchen is to synchronize the layout with the design above. The lighting fixture above the kitchen island must be centered over the island and in the middle of the barrel. The barrels must sync up with the various other kitchen components in a way that makes sense visually and functionally.

Barrel Ceiling Materials:

Single faux painted barrel ceiling in the hallway of a home designed and built by Orlando Custom Builder Jorge Ulibarri

Single faux painted barrel ceiling in the hallway of a home designed and built by Orlando Custom Builder Jorge Ulibarri

So you decided your home can accommodate the barrel ceiling. Now it’s time to pick the finishes. When it comes to choosing your design elements, you have several options: soffits, beams, crown molding, tongue and groove, faux finish, travertine tiles and brick veneers. You can chose to go with a single barrel or a multibarrel design. The multibarrel ceiling typically consists of three to four barrels separated by beams. If you are watching your budget, a faux-painted finish for the barrel ceiling is most affordable. If you opt for brick veneer or travertine, you have the choice of a staggered linear pattern that runs parallel to the beams or a herringbone pattern that crisscrosses or a combination of both. Another budgetary consideration: the herringbone pattern in a brick or travertine finish tends to be the more expensive of the two. Wood beams are essential elements of the barrel ceiling. You can go with the more affordable faux wood beams made of drywall or foam. Pricier options include beams made of real wood veneer. For a look at how to create faux wood beams, I invite you to view my Trade Secrets Video on Faux Wood beams as well.

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Color Trends for 2013 Nix Neutrals For Statement Hues

By | Custom Home Construction, Custom Home Design, Kitchen Design, Video Episodes | No Comments
Midnight Mystery Palette in Roycroft Bottle Green (SW 2847) and Olde World Gold (SW 7700)

Midnight Mystery Palette in Roycroft Bottle Green (SW 2847) and Olde World Gold (SW 7700)

 Opposites Attract as Color Makes a Comeback in Home Decor for 2013

Color is making a huge comeback in home décor and design. Beige walls are out of fashion along with the idea of flipping homes for a quick buck. As more homeowners opt to stay put in their homes for the long haul, they are trading in neutrals for statement hues that bear their own unique décor signature.

Sherwin-Williams has pegged the Color Trends for 2013 and packaged them in four distinct palettes. Recently, while attending the International Builders’ Show in Vegas, I spoke with Sue Wadden, Color Consultant and Interior Designer for Sherwin-Williams.  “The 2013 Color forecast is called Opposites Attract. We featured four collections ranging from deep, dark, saturated masculine tones, all the way to bright, energetic, exciting colors with punches of gray, black and white as palette cleansers, “ explains Wadden.

Every year, Sherwin-Williams culls their color forecast from what’s trending in fashion, pop culture, consumerism and the arts. The reigning color for 2013 is Aloe, as anointed by Sherwin-Williams.

Aloe SW6464 Color of the Year 2013 as deemed by Sherwin-Williams

Aloe SW6464 Color of the Year 2013 as deemed by Sherwin-Williams

“This is no ordinary pastel – Aloe is funky and glamorous, demure and free-spirited. While Aloe’s vibe can verge on retro, when paired with caviar blacks, crisp whites or soft grays, suddenly Aloe has a new soul and attitude. And Aloe is highly adaptable, making it a perfect pick for everyday spaces such as a breezy sunroom or a well-dressed living room,” says Jackie Jordan, Sherwin–Williams director of color marketing.

Aloe SW6464 Color of the Year 2013 as deemed by Sherwin-Williams

Aloe SW6464 Color of the Year 2013 as deemed by Sherwin-Williams

Here is a breakdown of the Four Color Palettes in 2013’s Color Forecast:

Midnight Mystery:

Midnight Mystery Palette in Loyal Blue (SW 6510)

Midnight Mystery Palette in Loyal Blue (SW 6510)

This color palette features oxidized, metallic hues. “Midnight Mystery connotes a moodiness inspired by the futuristic Victorian vibe of steampunk design. It’s a turn of the century aesthetic, a mixture of Thomas Edison and visible mechanics,” explains Wadden. The palette has dark, earthy colors counterbalanced with green grays.

Honed Vitality:

Honed Vitality Palette in Spiced Cider (SW 7702)

Honed Vitality Palette in Spiced Cider (SW 7702)

These earthy, desert inspired colors kick up the neutral palette a few notches with pops of blue for sky and water. The palette draws inspiration from the layered hues of  mineral deposits, sea-buffed stones and the weathered shutters of a rustic farmhouse. “It’s very grounded to the earth and very useable for interior and exterior residential and commercial,” says Wadden.

Vintage Moxie:

Vintage Moxie Palette in  Radiant Lilac (SW 0074)

Vintage Moxie Palette in Radiant Lilac (SW 0074)

This collection of 60s inspired pastels has a retro glamour of pearls, florals and classic feminine silhouettes tempered by funky accents and attitude, according to Sherwin-Williams. Wadden calls them “pastels on speed.” She suggests using these colors as interior pops set off by a white canvas.

High Voltage:

High Voltage Palette in Electric Lime(SW 6921) and Extra White (SW 7006)

High Voltage Palette in Electric Lime(SW 6921) and Extra White (SW 7006)

These bright colors mirror the neon lights of Vegas and 80s fashions. The High Voltage collection has an electric feel and works well with palette cleansers such as black, white, gray and clear acrylics as primary backdrops. “The High Voltage collection is based on the technology of LED lighting and pop culture. They are brights tied to consumer merchandise,” explains Wadden.  She cites as an example, an all white room with electric lime green chairs.

So now that you know what’s trending in color for the home, how do you use such bold hues? I asked Wadden for a few tips.

Use a neutral as a primary wall color and accessorize with colors.

Honed Vitality Palette in Safari (SW 7697)

Honed Vitality Palette in Safari (SW 7697)

You can stay on trend by incorporating splashes of color without making the focus all about a trend color. “Paint the front door rustic red and the exterior charcoal. It’s very rich and on trend,” says Wadden. Think of pulling in color with tile, flooring, carpeting and fabrics from any of these four color palettes.

Take cues from colors you like.

Vintage Moxie Palette in Radiant Lilac (SW 0074)

Vintage Moxie Palette in Radiant Lilac (SW 0074)

“It doesn’t have to be a commitment to the color trend but the whole environment you create,” explains Wadden.  She suggests creating a room that is fashion forward in these colors or using unexpected colors on the ceiling. One example is a front door in plum and a purple couch. “I like the exterior of the home to be a signature of  the home’s interior,” says Wadden.

As a culture, we are becoming more color-conscious, as illustrated by the proliferation of chromotherapy home accessories from bathtubs and toilets to backlighting. I’ll be covering that topic in my next blog posting. Until then, be sure and subscribe so that you don’t miss a single posting on the latest in home design and décor.

The Electric Fireplace, A Hot Property in Home Design for 2013

By | Custom Home Construction, Custom Home Design, Fireplace design, Video Episodes | No Comments
Electric Fireplace by Modern Flames

Electric Fireplace by Modern Flames

Electric Fireplace by Modern Flames
www.modernflames.com

One of the latest trends to light up a room is the electric fireplace. Recently, I attended the International Builders’ Show in Vegas where electric fireplaces were the hot property in home design. There are several reasons why:

Electric Fireplaces are Affordable:

Electric Fireplace by Hearth & Home

Electric Fireplace by Hearth & Home

A gas or wood burning fireplace can cost you approximately $3,000 to purchase and install plus the cost of the gas lines, which can run as much as $400.  An electric fireplace costs approximately $1,000.

Electric Fireplaces Can be Installed in Any Room:

Electric Fireplace by Hearth & Home

Electric Fireplace by Hearth & Home

Because electric fireplaces don’t require ventilation, they can go in any room with a 120 Volt electrical outlet to plug into. The electric fireplace simply hangs from the wall so the possibilities are endless.

Electric Fireplace by Modern Flames

Electric Fireplace by Modern Flames

Imagine an electric fireplace flickering nearby while soaking in your tub, reading fireside in your family room or enjoying an al fresco evening by the flickering light of your outdoor living room hearth.

Electric Fireplaces Go with Any Décor:

Electric Fireplace by Modern Flames

Electric Fireplace by Modern Flames

Manufacturers are capitalizing on this trend in the hearth industry launching new electric fireplace product lines in many styles. These electric fireplaces have cool capabilities that traditional fireplaces just can’t pull off. Some have colored LED backlighting that can be programmed to rotate up to nine different colors or remain constant. The base of the firebox can feature stones or a glass rocks.

Electric Fireplace by Hearth & Home

Electric Fireplace by Hearth & Home

In order to appreciate the beauty of these affordable faux fireplaces, I put together a Vlog with some video clips so you can really appreciate how an electric fireplace can light up a room.

The Kitchen Island Curves and Wraps In 2013

By | Custom Home Construction, Custom Home Design, Kitchen Design, Video Episodes | One Comment

The Latest Trends in Kitchen Island Design Trade Lines for Curves and Mixed Materials for Monolithic.

MonolithicIslandNAM

The latest kitchen design trend creating a buzz at the International Builders Show has to do with the shape and make of the kitchen island.

Kitchen Island Curves:

CurvedKitchenisland

Still a must-have in any modern kitchen, the island is softening its linear look with curves that allow for round-the-table seating instead of shoulder-to-shoulder.

Kitchen Island Surfaces Go Monolithic:

MonolithicIslandNewAmericanHome

Countertops that wrap around the island base are showing up in the latest kitchen designs. It’s an aesthetic known as Monolithic. You’ll be hearing that word a lot in 2013. Monolithic design is defined as a single material that seamlessly wraps around a surface, wall, cabinetry or any other feature.

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Some of the best examples are in the concrete surfaces of kitchen countertops, very on-trend this year. Concrete is a malleable material that can be sculpted and molded to create a seamless surface.

Kitchen Island Doubles Up:

HuntersKitchenRendering

The kitchen island is doubling up in some homes to offer more multi-tasking capabilities, surface space and storage. Orlando Custom Homebuilder Jorge Ulibarri says the double island is a great solution to a common kitchen design challenge: keeping the kitchen open while preserving storage space. “In one of my homes, the shape of the kitchen is square. Rather than enclose the kitchen with walls to create more surface and storage space,  I added the double island  to maintained the openness while providing this added functionality.”

In this example picture above,  Jorge designed two islands each with seven linear feet of countertop space that sit four feet apart.  The inner island, located in the kitchen center, will be monolithic, made of wraparound Carrera marble with white cabinetry underneath. The island facing out towards the family room features the same white Carrera marble countertop but with an espresso wood cabinetry base to compliment the floor-to-ceiling fireplace in the family room.

For more design ideas and money-saving new construction tips, subscribe to the video series, Trade Secrets, available on YouTube

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How to Add Glass Tiles for Today’s Shimmer Trend

By | Custom Home Construction, Custom Home Design, Fireplace design, Kitchen Design | One Comment
NKBA 2013 Design Contest Contestant "Mosaics Meet Their Match" , photo courtesy of NKBA

NKBA 2013 Design Contest Contestant “Mosaics Meet Their Match” , photo courtesy of NKBA

Surfaces with shimmer and sheen go perfect with today’s popular transitional style. 

Surfaces that shimmer are trending in home decor and that makes glass tile an ideal tool to add sparkle to any space. From kitchen backsplashes to bathtub surrounds, accent walls and pool perimeters, indoors and outdoors, glass tile is IN. The National Kitchen & Bath Association says the current look in the kitchen is all about surfaces with sheens that gleam alongside stainless steel appliances, capturing light and complimenting more traditional elements such as wood cabinetry. Orlando Custom Homebuilder Jorge Ulibarri uses a mixture of glass, stone and metallic tile mosaics in many of his homes.

“Travertine or stone mosaics work well in more rustic styles while the glass tile mosaics help fuse rustic and contemporary. It’s an affordable architectural detail when used in small, high profile areas,” says Jorge.

Glass Mosaic tiles frame a vanity built by Orlando Custom Builder Jorge Ulibarri

Glass Mosaic tiles frame a vanity built by Orlando Custom Builder Jorge Ulibarri

Glass tile is a timeless material adorning ancient temples, monuments and other great architectural works. Today’s modern twist on glass tile mixes it up in mosaic patterns with other materials such as stone, ceramic and metal.

Glass tiles come in many shapes, colors and sizes and are available in sheets of predesigned patterns. Prices vary from a low $5 per square foot  sheet to upwards of $15 to $30 per sheet. Although these mosaics may look like artisans painstakingly handcrafted each design, glass tile mosaic sheets are easy to install.  Here are some of the hottest looks for 2013.

Glass Stick Mosaics:

Glass tile backsplash in a Modern-Mediterranean Kitchen designed and built by Orlando Custom Builder Jorge Ulibarri

Glass tile backsplash in a Modern-Mediterranean Kitchen designed and built by Orlando Custom Builder Jorge Ulibarri

Rectangular tile or glass stick  mosaics are popular shapes and patterns in modern home design.

The  larger rectangular blocks known as subway tile are surfacing in many kitchens where the aim is to incorporate simpler, more modern elements.  Shiny glass tiles combined with  stainless steel and industrial materials work to create a transitional style that blends traditional and contemporary elements.

White Subway Tile in the kitchen of The New Southern Home, photo courtesy of NWC Construction

White Subway Tile in the kitchen of The New Southern Home, photo courtesy of NWC Construction

Glass Mixed with Stone or Metal Mosaics:

Glass mixed with stone or metallic tiles in a mosaic lends itself perfectly to that Mod-Mediterranean style that blends Old World with modern design.

stoneandglassmosiac

Metallic tile alone can add an industrial edge to a room as an accent wall or niche backdrop. These mixed mosaics merge shiny and natural materials to pull together stone floors with beams and contemporary fixtures. As an example, Orlando Custom Homebuilder Jorge Ulibarri is framing a wall-to-ceiling fireplace with a mixed mosaic design of stone, glass, and metallic.

Glass and stone tile fireplace designed and built by Orlando Custom Builder Jorge Ulibarri

Glass and stone tile fireplace designed and built by Orlando Custom Builder Jorge Ulibarri

Glass Tiles for Sparkling Pools:

GlassMosicPool

 

Many of today’s pools feature glass tiles on the sides and bottoms to capture light and liven up the color of water. A blue or emerald-green glass tile bottom can make pool water mimic the azure hues of the Caribbean ocean. Because the glass tiles are durable, tough, and resistant to mildew and stains, they are ideal for embellishing outdoor areas such as water features.

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Glass Tiles To Infuse 2013 Color of the Year:

Emerald Green Glitter Glass SubwayTiles by Susan Jablon

Emerald Green Glitter Glass SubwayTiles by Susan Jablon

The new hue for 2013 as anointed by Pantone, the global color authority,  is Emerald. This jewel-tone hue is surfacing as color pops in home décor and fashion. Consider incorporating emerald glass mosaics to sparkle up a space.  Pantone suggests infusing its Color of the Year in emerald painted accent walls and home accessories as well.

stix48

Check back soon for more home design inspiration and new home construction tips. I’m headed to the NAHB International Builders’ Show in Las Vegas next week. We will return with the latest products, sources and trends in home design and new construction. I can’t wait to share with you more about what I discover. Thanks for reading.

5 Tips to Pick the Perfect Stone Slab

By | Custom Home Construction, Custom Home Design, Kitchen Design | No Comments

 

granite kitchen backsplash in home designed and built by Orlando Custom Home Builder Jorge Ulibarri

granite kitchen backsplash in home designed and built by Orlando Custom Home Builder Jorge Ulibarri

Natural stone gives any room rich and timeless character but picking the perfect piece of stone for your kitchen countertops can be tricky business. Since it’s a natural material, no two lots or pallets of stone are alike. Each harvest from the quarry has its own unique characteristics and appearance. Selecting the ideal stone surface not only involves a good eye but a clear understanding of the material. Here are a few money-saving tips to help you pick the perfect stone slab for your home’s countertops and kitchen island.

granite countertop in home designed and built by Orlando Custom Home Builder Jorge Ulibarri

granite countertop in home designed and built by Orlando Custom Home Builder Jorge Ulibarri

 Pick the Slab Before Building the Kitchen Island and Counters:

A common mistake homeowners make is selecting a stone slab that doesn’t fit the kitchen counters and island.  Hakan Collu, Owner of International Tile and Stone, recommends that homeowners pick the stone slab first then design the countertops and island to fit the stone surfaces. “This is a big mistake that can cost money and detract from the look of the stone. Kitchen design should be collaboration between the designer/builder and the stone supplier to avoid waste and extra cost,” says Collu.  When the kitchen island is built too large for the stone selected, the homeowner has to buy an extra slab and ends up with an unattractive seam. Also, certain colors of stone are limited to certain sizes. To get the maximum use of the slab, pick it out first, then build the island to fit.

granite countertop in home designed and built by Orlando Custom Home Builder Jorge Ulibarri

granite countertop in home designed and built by Orlando Custom Home Builder Jorge Ulibarri

Understand the Stone’s Durability and Limitations:

White Carrera marble is the popular choice these days for countertops; it’s also a stone that requires regular maintenance and care. “Homeowners need to understand the stone’s characteristics and limitations so there are realistic expectations about the stone’s durability.”   Marble is not as durable as granite; it stains, scratches and cuts.  Travertine, a type of limestone, is a softer stone and is more absorbent making it vulnerable to stains.

granite countertop in home designed and built by Orlando Custom Home Builder Jorge Ulibarri

granite countertop in home designed and built by Orlando Custom Home Builder Jorge Ulibarri

Ask HOW the Stone is Priced:

Stone can be priced per square foot or by the piece.  It’s important to ask what is included in the price of the stone. Ask whether the countertop and island CAD design, the stone slab’s custom cut, and it’s installation are included in the price.

granite countertop in home designed and built by Orlando Custom Home Builder Jorge Ulibarri

granite countertop in home designed and built by Orlando Custom Home Builder Jorge Ulibarri

Lay the Slab Down to See How Light Reflects:

Stone slabs typically are displayed standing upright. When looking at stone piece, lay it down to see how light reflects. This will give you an accurate representation of the way the stone will look lying flat as a countertop. It allows you to show the stonecutter the area of the stone you want highlighted in the custom cut. Also, this is a good way to inspect the stone for fissures that are harder to see when the stone slab is standing upright.

granite countertop in home designed and built by Orlando Custom Home Builder Jorge Ulibarri

granite countertop in home designed and built by Orlando Custom Home Builder Jorge Ulibarri

Ask if the Stone Has a Sealer:

A quality sealer can extend the lifetime and durability of natural stone. The Marble Institute of America says that most granite countertops do not need to be sealed. Granite is stronger, more resistant to scratches and more durable than most stone surfaces. Most granite slabs are factory treated with a resin coating to fill in micro-fissures, indentations and other imperfections. Marble is a good candidate for a quality sealer because it is vulnerable to mild acids commonly found in the kitchen. If you do choose to seal the stone countertop, The Marble Institute of America recommends using a quality sealer that is resistant to water and oil and has a life expectancy of ten to fifteen years and

Look for Remnant Stone:

granite countertop in home designed and built by Orlando Custom Home Builder Jorge Ulibarri

granite countertop in home designed and built by Orlando Custom Home Builder Jorge Ulibarri

Sometimes, great deals are available with remnant stone. This is stone that was leftover from a custom cut. By choosing stone scraps, you can find an exotic stone piece for a fraction of the cost. These stone scraps are ideal for small areas such as niches and half baths. For more money-saving tips and design ideas, subscribe to the video series, Trade Secrets, available on YouTube.