3 No-Fail Tips For Your Next Kitchen Renovation


A Bronxville, New York, kitchen by designer Sarah Blank (PHOTO: NEIL LANDINO)

We tapped three of today’s premier kitchen designers to weigh in on the heart of the home. Here are the kitchen renovation tips Sarah Blank, Matthew Quinn and Christopher Peacock think should be top of mind.

Don’t stress about the mess. 

Sarah Blank | sarahblankdesignstudio.com

“Do not clean up when the designer comes over to see how you live. If you tidy up before I arrive, how am I going to know what the problems are? I spend a lot of time talking to clients and asking what they want, but what tells me even more is opening all the cabinets and drawers and looking at their inventory and how everything is stored. Once I know what’s behind closed doors, I can design your kitchen! My new book, Classic Kitchens for Modern Living, is certainly a culmination of everything I have learned over the past 40 years!”

MORE BY SARAH BLANK: The Charm Factor Is High In This Historic Kitchen Renovation

Begin with the basics. 

Matthew Quinn | matthew-quinn.com

“I fell in love with kitchens because of their technicality—I like to focus on the architectural plan first; I’m a big stickler for rectangular and square rooms. From there, we address access points, center lines, location of appliances, storage, circulation, ergonomics and functionality. After nearly 30 years in the business, I can immediately pinpoint what needs to be tweaked, but if the kitchen works well, I know I can make it beautiful.”

MORE BY MATTHEW QUINN: Pick Up On The Color Cues In This Fun Atlanta Kitchen

Have confidence in your team. 

Christoper Peacock | peacockhome.com

“The key is to be a good listener, have an inquisitive mind and a holistic or all-encompassing approach. If you watch what happens in most people’s kitchens today, it’s not kitchen related. It’s a gathering space, an entertaining space, a quiet space. Sometimes it’s a retreat or a place to relax—it’s all these things. We have to understand how the kitchen is being used because this room has matured into the most important space in the home. It’s critical to get the design right. Trust the people you’re working with—a kitchen renovation is an everlasting project.”

MORE BY CHRISTOPHER PEACOCK: Behind The Calming Kitchen Scheme We’re All Craving Right Now