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Archive for the 'Outdoor kitchen' Category

August 1st, 2011
By Vivian Martin

An easy way to ease into gardening is when you receive a tangible benefit. A cottage herb garden provides visual interest, delightful scents and a perpetual supply of fresh herbs. A snip here, a pluck there and the fruits of your cooking will dazzle family and guests. I like keeping a herb planter close to the barbeque. Fresh basil leaves wilted on a grilled pizza are divine. This article from BuildDirect provides a primer on how to plan for your culinary garden!

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Herb Garden

If you’re looking for a home improvement project that will add beauty, relaxation and delicious fresh herbs to your life all at the same time, adding an herb garden to your home or yard can be the perfect choice. I love cooking with fresh herbs, but find that buying them at the grocery store can be quite expensive. Fortunately, most herb plants are actually quite easy to grow at home.

For the price of a few packs of seeds or a few nursery plants, you can enjoy a steady supply of fresh and delicious herbs all summer long. In fact, I find that many herbs can also be grown inside the house, as long as you provide them with an adequate light supply. If you’d like to try your hand at growing your own herbs, here are a few ideas you can use as inspiration. (continue with the full article here…)

July 29th, 2011
By Vivian Martin

Image source: National Geographic

For us, hornets and spiders fall into the same category. This is because these bugs, while they can look somewhat creepy and intimidating, are actually beneficial. Both hornets and spiders devour flies, mosquitoes and other pesky insects. The white faced hornet, for example, loves to eat caterpillars and tomato worms, so it is a great natural defender for your vegetable garden.

But here’s the thing with hornets: while we know they’re beneficial, we don’t necessarily want them hanging around while we are trying to entertain on the patio or in the backyard. They do have stingers, and getting stung by a hornet is no laughing matter. We don’t want to kill the hornets – we just want to repel them away from our outdoor entertaining area and to another part of the yard. Read the full article for natural ways to keep these beneficial insects from crashing your picnic!

July 5th, 2011
By Vivian Martin

 

Milford, MA Showroom tropical patio

A great place to grill turns summer cooking from indoor chore into prime party entertainment. And few foods are as memorable as fresh vegetables and meats kissed by a little fire. If you’re thinking about boosting the joy factor in your summer cooking arrangement, you’ll get lots of ideas from more than 1,500 inspiring outdoor kitchen photos from designers on Houzz. Here are a few examples to whet your appetite, but please feel free to just help yourself here.

April 19th, 2011
By Vivian Martin

An outdoor kitchen is a wonderful way to add more space to a home without undergoing major renovations. Whether it’s the simple addition of an outdoor fire pit or an extensive kitchen and dining area, the idea has caught on.

Outdoor kitchens can offer so many benefits. Casual summer dining can occur outdoors every evening. Breakfasts alfresco can take on an entirely new intimacy, and dinner parties too large for your dining room can easily be accommodated. Think family hot dog roasts. Beer and open-fire pizza. S’mores.

This natural extension of a home merges the indoors and outdoors, and can succeed in a variety of forms. Take note as summer slowly approaches on the beauty of outdoor kitchens and dining.

Follow the slideshow below for inspiration for your outdoor living space.

April 12th, 2011
By Vivian Martin

Now that the weather is getting nicer, all ideas of outdoor leisure home activities come flooding back to your mind. From playing out in the yard with the kids, to enjoying neighbors over for a barbecue on the back patio, it’s never too early to start planning. Adding a summer kitchen to your outdoor patio maybe just the piece that is missing from yours! Portable grills are nice, but summer kitchens allow you to plan an entire area for relaxing, preparing and serving food, and it can add value onto your home.

When choosing your amenties, the following considerations come into play:

  • Determine you entertainment style
  • Assess what you enjoy cooking
  • Comfortable lounging area
  • Know your budget

The addition of a summer kitchen can be a wonderful addition to your home, which you can use for years into the future. When you finally decide to sell your home, a summer kitchen is a well sought after amenity that homebuyers will be eager to see.  Don’t forget to plan for outdoor lighting around your summer kitchen to ensure your evening entertaining is just as enjoyable as the daytime.

(Read the full article and enjoy more images at the freshome blog)

November 3rd, 2010
By Vivian Martin

At Drummond House Plans, we are always creating new designs. This is your chance to participate in the creative process and tell us what YOU like and want! We have several bungalows on our drawing board and your input will tell us which one gets launched first!

On our homepage at www.DrummondHousePlans.com, you will find three versions of a bungalow floor plan. They all have the same economical footprint but different interiors. Let us know which floor plan you prefer and why, or even let us know how you would have us customize it for your needs!

The basic characteristics are the result of the input of many of our site visitors. The floor plans all include:

  • 3 bedrooms (master includes suite)
  • Two car garage
  • 1550 sq.ft. of living area
  • Covered porch on rear elevation
  • Fireplace in living or family room
  • Secondary bathroom
  • Kitchen with island counter
  • Stairway for access to the basement
  • Access from the garage by a mud room

So, just study the floor plans and let us know which one you think should be launched first. Then stay tuned!

Thanks for visiting the DrummondHousePlans Blog!

June 16th, 2010
By Vivian Martin

While many men shy away from the kitchen, the backyard grill is the primal domain that beckons them to strut their stuff. Whether it is a simple charcoal bowl or an elaborate grill-zebo, dads and husbands seem to relish the thought (if you will pardon the pun) of grilling, smoking, and roasting summertime treats. 

Burgers and hotdogs are still grilling staples but backyard cookery has gotten even more creative. It is not uncommon for a grilling area to now include a barbeque with side burner, an outdoor kitchen prep area, a smoker and other specialty cookery items. A number of barbeque manufacturers have additional components that allow you to put together a grilling island that is both attractive and functional. If you have a yearning for a woodburning pizza oven, companies like Chicago Brick Oven have prefab kits and components to make building your outdoor kitchen easy!

At DrummondHousePlans, we have more and more requests for house designs that include a covered grilling deck. The reason for this is twofold. Firstly, it is great to have an area to grill even when the weather is not co-operating, thus extending the season to grill comfortably and keep the barbeque out of the elements. The second reason is that the grilling deck often becomes an extension of the indoor living space, providing a natural transition to the backyard. Some great examples of outdoor grills or full kitchens can be found in our Design Ideas at Houzz.

Some helpful hints in designing an outdoor kitchen can be found at Backyard Landscape Ideas

 Outdoor kitchen designs can be as elaborate or as simple as you desire. Depending on your creativity and your budget, you can have a simple island to make outdoor cooking easier, or an elaborate outdoor room.

Before you decide what you want, be sure and explore all your options so you can get the outdoor kitchen you truly want.

The first thing to take into account is the space you have available. If space is at a premium, you’ll want to be conservative and use your space carefully. If you have a lot of space, you can design an outdoor kitchen in whatever configuration feels good to you.

Outdoor Kitchen Design

Outdoor kitchen designs include islands of various shapes, countertops, short walls, seating areas and more. Some even incorporate large outdoor patio fireplaces and plasma televisions!

You can plan for straight countertops or angled, whichever fits the shape of your house and yard the best. Maybe you’re putting your outdoor kitchen poolside or overlooking a lake or river. You can plan it any way you want.

Outdoor kitchen designs often incorporate natural surfaces like granite or slate on the countertops. Ceramic or stone tile are also popular choices. Remember to choose textures and colors that suit the exterior of your home if it is to be nestled up to an exterior wall.

In warmer climates, stucco makes a nice texture for the vertical wall surfaces. In wetter or colder climates, something durable like poly is actually an excellent choice. It does not crack, warp, fade, rust or deteriorate.

Stainless steel is the usual choice for outdoor sinks, refrigerators, cooktops and grills. It weathers well and resists rust as well as looking very professional. It is easy to clean and can withstand a lot of abuse. Your budget and space allowance will determine how many of these appliances you can install.

Be sure to incorporate some counter space for food preparation like chopping, slicing and mixing. Having running water can be very useful in your cooking space, so a sink is a wonderful addition if you have the space and budget for it. A single basin is usually sufficient. Storage drawers, access panels for the gas lines to your grill and storage shelves are also options you should consider.

Outdoor Kitchen Covers

Be sure to take your climate into consideration for your outdoor kitchen design. If you get a lot of sun, you may want to ensure that you have a covered area of some kind. This can be a permanent structure or something removable like canvas panels.

If you get a lot of rain, you’ll enjoy a permanent overhead covering as well. If you get snow in the winter, you’ll want to build some type of covering that will stand up to the weight of the snow while protecting your outdoor kitchen.

More Ideas For Outdoor Kitchens

Another thing to consider if you live in a cold climate is a fireplace. This can be anything from an outdoor patio fireplace to a large, built-in traditional fireplace. With one of these installed, you’ll be able to enjoy your outdoor kitchen even during the winter.

Seating is another concern. Do you entertain a lot? If you do, you might like some seating near the cooking area so your family and guests can visit with you during meal preparation. Bar stools work well, as do formed benches with cushions.

Outdoor patio furniture may also fit into your design. If you have the space, you can arrange your kitchen and all the seating areas like a room inside your house. You can include end tables, comfortable chairs, a dining area and more. It becomes an outdoor room!

Lighting Your Outdoor Kitchen

Don’t forget the lighting. Ambiance lighting is fine for setting the mood, but you’ll need better lighting to cook by. Do you want decorative lamps set into the walls? How about portable solar lights on your dining table? There are many choices available when you are designing your outdoor kitchen, so look carefully for the lighting you really want. There is nothing more annoying than not being able to see what you are doing in the kitchen, so take that into account when choosing your lighting.

Once your outdoor kitchen is built and you’re enjoying it, you’ll be glad you took the time to really consider your design.

For more ideas of how to enjoy your outdoor kitchen, make sure you follow us on Twitter.

 



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