Call Us: Baltimore: (410) 675-4740    |   Chevy Chase  (240) 858-1001

Recent Projects: The Open Floor Plan and Polished Bath

national lumber careers whole team

Watch any home improvement show or take a quick glimpse into any recent home buyer’s ‘must have’ list and you’ll see a common thread: a request for an open floor plan. Open floor plans have been at the forefront of interior design priority lists for years, allowing homeowners the space and set-up they need to interact with family, decorate and entertain. One of the common pitfalls of this design element? The omission of separating elements which then creates one communal space instead of separate areas for various purposes.

Creating a ‘flow’ and relationship between spaces that feels organic is not a simple task; it takes attention to detail and an understanding of how each room will be utilized and the journey the homeowner will take throughout the spaces each day. According to our kitchen expert, Rick Bechtel, it is crucial that contractors not only listen to client requests and industry trends, but that they also make suggestions founded in experience that help accommodate the existing family dynamic and everyday movement in the space. For example—the family who cooks and eats together may appreciate an open layout with a serving island and a couple who entertains and prefers to serve plated meals in a dining room may prefer a more private cooking space.

One of our most recent kitchen and bath projects touched on these very concepts. This client’s goal was to achieve an organic, open floor plan to create a functional, communal cooking, dining and living space that didn’t feel too vast. They also wanted to incorporate more functional storage while creating an environment that didn’t feel disconnected or over-planned. To accomplish the customer’s goal, the National Lumber kitchen and bath team utilized Starmark cabinetry and the many creative storage solutions that they offer.

By relocating the kitchen and incorporating the existing family room/main living area, they were able to combine the things they love: cooking and family. They were also able to add something they desperately needed: functional, attractive storage. Once reworked, the new kitchen featured creative corner cabinet storage, pull-out spice storage, pull-out cooking utensil and knife storage, multiple drawers for more organized itemized storage, maximized tray storage with dividers above steam/microwave oven, pull-out double trash/recycling, an integrated coffee system, and a ‘pot filler’ faucet above range.

The new kitchen also features built-in refrigerator/freezer units, an integrated paneled dishwasher, integrated paneled refrigerator/freezer drawers, an apron-front farmhouse sink, an enclosed, paneled professional hood vent, double-thick stone tops with a waterfall peninsula edge and full-height splashes which not only looks great, but is also easy to clean and maintain.

To design this kitchen required frequent site visits to confirm measurements and clearances, in-store design consultations to view several styles and finishes and in-depth research on appliances to ensure fit and function. Due to the hard work and vast experience of our design team, we were able to exceed expectations, transforming the space into a chic, comfortable and useful environment. We used Starmark Cherry Bridgeport Modern Full Overlay (in Driftwood Stained Finish) cabinetry in the kitchen and Ultracraft Walnut Shaker with the International Overlay (in Natural Stained Finish) in the bathroom area.

Creating an inviting, functional space for everyday life as well as entertaining family and friends is not an impossible task with help from our kitchen and bath team. We understand the balance you seek when working to build something that fits your needs but is also intimate and comfortable. Meet with our team to get started on your dream kitchen

More to explore

Kitchen DEsigner

Laura brings 18 years of experience to our kitchen design team. She helps customers build exceptional kitchen spaces down to the finest details. 

Every client has unique needs, and Laura enjoys the puzzle of figuring out how to fulfill them. She combines her technical abilities with her background in interior design to balance functionality and beauty.

She listens to her clients to help them narrow down their choices and presents a curated selection to make the process less overwhelming. Laura finds creative solutions to check off their wish list while keeping them on budget.

Her personal favorite design trend is a transitional style with a hint of traditional details. She loves the mix of painted colors and the textures and variations of natural woods. However, the best
part of her job is the opportunity to work in every design style
and come up with different combinations of styles, materials,
and finishes executing her client’s unique vision.

Personally, she loves everything involving water- the ocean, pools, boating, and long baths.
She also enjoys anything with a story- books, movies, shows, etc.
Her newest hobby is attempting to have as much fun cooking as she does exploring new restaurants.

Kitchen DEsigner

With over 15 years of experience, LindaRose brings deep knowledge of how to achieve beautiful kitchen designs at the right price. 

For LindaRose, listening to a client’s needs is paramount to achieving a great design. Creativity is key to kitchen design, requiring out-of-the-box thinking to achieve an excellent final product. 

Some of her favorite design trends she introduces to clients include transitional, clean lines, and dark islands with light perimeters. 

Before entering the world of kitchen design, she spent 20 years in theatre as a singer and actor, working in notable local theatres like Round House and Everyman.

In her free time, she enjoys other creative endeavors such as working with textiles including quilting, embroidery, and weaving. 

Kitchen DEsigner

Rick Bechtel is an industry expert with 7+ years as a kitchen designer. He brings unique insights to design thanks to his 15 years as a carpenter and contractor.

Rick believes in the importance of listening to the needs of the clients he works with. Utilizing his experience s a carpenter and contractor, he strives to make every layout as economical as possible through wise cabinet selection. 

Rick makes informed suggestions for products or features that can improve the cooking experience. He’s an expert in taking the dream items clients identify online or in showrooms and introducing options that better fit their design needs and are less cost prohibitive.

As a designer, he’s an expert on contemporary or transitional styles, light colors, and wood accents. 

Rick is passionate about woodworking and contracting but transitioned his career to spend more time with his children. He enjoys projects around his (or his children’s) house, and weekend trips with his wife.