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PHOTO BY JOHN KNOUFF

5300 Crosswind Dr. Columbus, Ohio 43228

Editor/Designer

Rebecca Walters rwalters@dispatch.com Staff Writer

Jeff thitoff

jthitoff@dispatch.com Contributing Writers

Nancy Byron Michael Leach Photographer

John Knouff Vice President Sales

Abby Clark Custom Publishing Sales Manager

Deborah Jackson Advertising Sales Director

Rhonda Barlow Advertising Sales Managers

BEST of Fall T

he BEST of Fall Central Ohio Home & Garden Show is just a couple of weeks away. There will be something for everyone at the three-day show. Entertaining, cooking, decorating and landscaping ideas will abound — along with plenty of guest celebrities, including HGTV’s Vern Yip, sharing their home-improvement expertise. The show also will feature Michael Boudreault, a talented muralist based in Columbus, who graciously let us conduct a Q&A for this issue of the magazine (see page 53). I also want to bring to your attention ABC’s Extreme Makeover: Home Edition, which was in town recently to build a new home for a deserving Columbus family. In August, the cast and crew of the show, along with P&D Builders Inc. and thousands of volunteers, built a new home for the Rhodes family. The show is scheduled to air sometime around the holidays. In the February issue of Central Ohio Home & Garden, we will feature a rare behind-the scenes story on what it takes to construct a home — in just one week, nonetheless. Locally based P&D Builders is going to give the magazine a sneak peek at what goes into this roundthe-clock labor of love. •

Rebecca Walters Editor

4 Central Ohio Home & Garden

Randy Hershoff Chris Kerr Phillip Kumar joseph matessa Chris Pettograsso Account Executive

KELLY ALLEN

kallen@dispatch.com

Central Ohio Home & Garden is a publication of The Columbus Dispatch’s Advertising Department. For advertising information, contact Deborah Jackson at 469.6136 or email djackson@dispatch.com.

This issue’s cover photo features the craftsmanship of decorative painter and muralist Michael Boudreault, who will be appearing at the BEST of Fall Central Ohio Home & Garden Show. Cover photo by

John Knouff

BEST OF FALL 2011


Photos by john knouff

Contents BEST of Fall 2011

ON THE COVER

Cave Dwellings 8 DEPARTMENTS

By Design 14 Great rooms — The heart of the home

Best of Home 22 Informal Dining — No rules

Great Outdoors 49 Michael Leach gets us ready for fall

At Home With 56 Home remodeler Peter A. Robinson

Gourmet Style 60 Kitchen islands — A gathering spot for all occasions

Our Backyard 66 special feature

BEST of Fall 52

22 14

6 Central Ohio Home & Garden

60

BEST OF FALL 2011

Q&A with Michael Boudreault and highlights of the Central Ohio Home & Garden BEST of Fall Show

56


On the Cover

Cave Dwellings Story by

8 Central Ohio Home & Garden

BEST OF FALL 2011

JEFF THITOFF

Photos by

KIMBERLY SHOOK


L

ong ago, caves provided protection from outside elements and the threat of certain prehistoric creatures. At their best — they were damp, dark and cavernous. Over the years, man and woman have created much more impressive dwellings, featuring modern amenities. The cave as a dwelling seemed to be disappearing. But as time passed, man desired a designated space that was strictly inspired by, and primarily geared toward, the male species — and with that, the “man cave” was born. In the beginning, man caves consisted of mammoth-sized televisions and normally were located at the lowest level of the house — the basement — or along the outer reaches of the garage. The cave was often dark, even on the brightest of days.

‘I’m not a big basement person, and I didn’t want this to look like a basement. Our basement (left is kind of our ski lodge now.’

Innovative design and

— Tracey Wallace

As man and woman evolved, and as technology and architecture advanced, these cave dwellings changed. In 2011, it’s no longer a cave — nor is it something just for men. It’s a family destination that has something for all. “I deal primarily with the wives now, and they have the most input,” says Jon Smith, co-owner of Buckeye Basements. “They want something spectacular for themselves, where they can have parties with their friends and host events like wine tastings.” Smith receives a variety of requests from homeowners wanting to redo their lowerlevel living areas based on their lifestyles. “Some people are just looking for someplace to send the kids, but a lot of people want something that is different than what everybody else has,” Smith says. “We’re putting one in right now that has a wine cellar, a bar and six stone arches.” The Wallace family in Westerville had an unfinished basement where their three boys played hockey and other sports, but decided to change the space for entertaining family and friends. The finished product, handled by Buckeye Basements, included a 100-inch media screen, flanked by a pair of 36-inch plasma televisions, a full kitchen, bathroom and bedroom, a wine room with

The Boyers of Upper Arllington lowered their basement by eight inches.

architectural advances are changing the way people feel about their basements. Central Ohio Home & Garden BEST OF FALL 2011

9


On the Cover

Photos by

a stone arch, fireplace and a pinball machine. The trio of televisions allows the family to view multiple sporting events and makes the Wallace home quite the popular place, where the boys and their friends play video games. Tracey Wallace is pleased with the finished product and says it’s a terrific venue to host parties. “I’m not a big basement person, and I didn’t want this to look like a basement,” she says. “Our basement is kind of our ski lodge now.” Upper Arlington resident Sally Boyer used to call her basement “the cave.” When the Boyer children were younger, they played in the space. But as they got older, a transformation was necessary. “It was not the most inviting area,” says husband Paul Boyer. “Whitewashed limestone walls, cement floor, pipes and ducts and wires visible on the ceiling.” The Boyers took a drastic approach when they renovated the space by lowering the floor eight inches.

“We knew this project would provide some unexpected challenges,” Sally Boyer says. Renovators Inc. was up to the task and gutted the old floor and transformed the cave into something more appealing and useful. The finished product included a beautifully designed living area, kitchen and full bathroom, a new laundry room and the infusion of natural light by installing several deep well windows. “Today, our basement is part of our daily living space,” Sally Boyer says. “Several nights a week there are anywhere from four to 10 kids downs there watching a movie, playing a video game, enjoying a Bible study, playing cards or ping pong.” While the Wallace and Boyer families were renovating their caves, the Robinson family was moving into a new house that was part of this year’s BIA Parade of Homes at Olentangy Falls. Weaver Custom Homes built the house. The basement has a factory-like,

KIMBERLY SHOOK

industrial look with an open ceiling and modern feel throughout. “The industrial part of it was the idea of our president, and it looks great with the 10-foot ceiling,” says design coordinator Daisy Shamp. The space is almost 2,000 square feet. There’s a bar, full kitchen, television area and pool table in the main space. In addition, there’s a wine cellar, a playroom, bedroom, bathroom and exercise room. Shamp says the industrial look is “unexpected” when you see it for the first time. “We heard some people saying the design might not fly in this area, but it came out very nicely,” she says. After the Parade, the Robinsons had the option of changing the design elements. However, they left it as is. “Everything they did down there looks great — from the metal around the posts on the bar, the light fixtures, the handrail coming down the steps — it all comes together really well,” Anna Robinson says. • Photos by

JOHN KNOUFF


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ARCHITECTURAL SERIES FIBERGLASS

FRENCH STYLES

Take a good look at your front door. Does it whisper to guests: ”Welcome to our beautiful home?“ When it comes to your home, your front door should be the focal point and the centerpiece. It makes that first impression – welcoming, intriguing, exciting, calming and perfectly enduring. Whatever you dream your front door to be, the experts at the JELD-WEN Design Center are ready to help you get inspired. The Design Center offers the greatest range of exterior door options in Central Ohio. “We can suit a variety of architectural home styles and budgets, says Amy Zimmerman, marketing manager of The Design Center, and we start with a unique approach to helping you pinpoint the perfect solution for your home and lifestyle.“ Upon entering the sleek new Design Center Showroom, you can feel the creativity. It’s just in the air! Your consultant will help you begin your shopping experience by asking you to select from 50 photograph cards at our “Mood Card Station,” choosing one or several images that are inspirational, aspirational or evoke a feeling of what your home means to you. Do you love rich stained wood? Or sharp clean modern lines? Or durable materials like steel and fiberglass? Close your eyes and set the mood for your home’s new updated look. Or if you would like to get a head start on seeing what your home will look like with new doors, prior to your visit, upload a photo at The Design Center website and then work with a consultant to digitally add new doors for a sneak peek at how different colors and styles will work in your home using our DesignWorks visualization software. No matter what you choose, you will be amazed by the dozens and

Windows | Entry Doors | Interior Doors | Garage Doors

12 Central Ohio Home & Garden

best of fall 2011


Custom Wood Doors JELD-WEN Exterior Wood Doors are crafted from beautiful hardwoods, available in various stain colors and offer homeowners the capability of creating one-of-a kind designs. You can truly capture your personality with a custom wood door. Authentic Wood Doors No door makes an impression like a wood door. It brings a sense of artistry into any home, whether modern or traditional. A wood door also increases the perceived value of your home. JELD-WEN offers doors in the following wood species: AuraLast Pine, Hemlock, Meranti Mahogany and Knotty Adler. Aurora Custom Fiberglass Doors Fiberglass doors are designed to emulate real hardwoods, down to the knots and cracks. In fact, with so many woodgrain textures, finishes and decorative accents to choose from it’s easy to make it your own and add your own personal style.

Architectural Fiberglass Doors These doors feature greater detailing for a more genuine appearance and they are made to be architecturally correct. For example, a flat paneled Craftsman Design is ideal for a home with Mission, Prairie, Shaker or Craftsman architecture. FiberLast Fiberglass Doors This is the next generation fiberglass door with eco-friendly aspects. It not only meets ENERGY STAR qualifications for the 2011 Tax Credit of up to $500, it’s made with 35% recycled materials! Design Pro & Smooth Pro Fiberglass Doors The Design Center also offers fiberglass doors built with strength and durability and they’re low-maintenance. These doors also meet the ENERGY STAR qualifications for the 2011 Tax Credit of up to $500. Steel Doors JELD-WEN steel doors from the Contours collection deliver long lasting good looks along with a beautiful profile that is unique to the market replete with design details normally found only in high-end, wood doors.

Let the consultants at The Design Center help you choose the right front door for you and your home – you’re only limited by your imagination. Visit the showroom at 765 Brooksedge Blvd in Westerville or visit www.thedesigncenter.com to browse the JELD-WEN door selection, schedule an in-home or in-showroom appointment or call 614-524-4176 for more information. JELD-WEN has been manufacturing windows and doors in Central Ohio since 1965. ©2011 JELD-WEN Door Replacement Systems, Inc.

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Visitbest Central Ohio Home & Garden 13 ourof Interactive I fall 2011 Showroom 765 Brooksedge Blvd. Westerville


Great expectations Great Rooms — The Heart of the Home Story by

L

JEFF THITOFF

abeling rooms can be tricky. Some spaces, like the dining room or bedroom, have obvious reasons for their monikers. Others aren’t quite so clear, like the attic or the den. But what about the great room? The name provides an expectation that is difficult to meet. What is so great about the room that makes it worthy of such a name? The exact birth date of the first great room is unknown, but its popularity began

14 Central Ohio Home & Garden

Photos by

JOHN KNOUFF

to soar in the 1990s. “When I was growing up, mom and dad had a formal living room and there was a formal dining room and a family room,” says Bob Yoakam, president of Rockford Homes. “That formal living room has almost gone away and people have taken some of that space and incorporated it into the family room and made it larger to make it the great room.” As new homes were being built, consumers took a hard look at what really was

BEST OF FALL 2011

functional in the homes, and where they would spend the majority of their time. “We didn’t use the formal living room when I was growing up,” Yoakam says. “It was where all the pretty furniture was and no one went in there unless there was a big party or something. The great room is one place they can use all the time.” Great rooms almost always featured two stories, but now people are going with nine- and 10-foot ceilings, Yoakam says. “The added ceiling height does a lot to the volume of space,” Yoakam says. “Sometimes that added space opens to a loft on the second floor for the kids to use while mom and dad are with the guests downstairs.” Lisa Theado, who handles sales and marketing for The Tuckerman Home Group, says certain design elements are standard in great rooms that make them warm and inviting. “The concept is to open the floor plan, so the rooms are one cohesive unit,” she says. “Even if you aren’t in the same room, the openness makes you seem like you are all together.” And that, perhaps, is the biggest difference between great rooms and living rooms or family rooms. Great rooms typically are open from the kitchen so it’s more of a gathering spot. Most have a fireplace

‘You can date yourself out of a kitchen in 12 months, but the great room designs last much longer.’ — Lisa Theado and a bank of windows along the back of the house, according to Theado. “Trying to bring in outdoor living space has become very popular,” she says. “Even if it’s snowing outside, you’re sitting by the fire and you can see the snow falling and not feel like you are trapped inside.” When deciding on a design for the great room, there aren’t too many hard-and-fast rules — other than the room has to be great, of course. Michelle Ethridge-Craycraft of InStyle Interiors has designed a number of great


By Design

The Reis home in Muirfield presented a unique challenge because the layout was longer and narrower than many great rooms.

rooms. “The top three focal points are usually the fireplace, television and the wall of windows,” Ethridge-Craycraft says. “Those are critical.” Ethridge-Craycraft says it’s important not to ignore the fireplace. Its location typically dictates the placement of the TV. “You usually don’t want the TV to go in a spot opposite of the fireplace, because then you would have your back to the fireplace,” she says. “And then you have to make sure the windows don’t conflict with the television and bring in a glare.” Sometimes, Ethridge-Craycraft has to contend with a smaller area or a more narrow design. The great room in the Reis home in Muirfield presented a unique challenge because the layout was longer and narrower than most.

“Michelle recommended we get an L-shaped sofa with a round table in the middle,” Bridget Reis says. “That and the way she designed the colors in the room made it much warmer.” When designing rooms that aren’t the ideal size or have larger items that might limit space, Ethridge-Craycraft gets creative. “You can put a writing desk behind the sofa, or low book shelves behind the couch to eliminate wall book shelves,” she says. “A lot of time an upholstered ottoman coffee table is nice because you can store toys there if you have young children.” One aspect of the great room that used to require a significant amount of space is the television, but that rarely is the case anymore. “People used to want to hide these big,

ugly televisions inside a large armoire, but TVs now look very cool,” Ethridge-Craycraft says. “With the flat screens, people don’t mind showing them off, they take up less space and are much more attractive.” Theado says one of the biggest changes in great rooms is the addition of more elements being built into the rooms. Bookcases and entertainment centers are being constructed in the walls to maximize space. Other than that, people are sticking with what has worked for years, she says. “You can date yourself out of a kitchen in 12 months, but the great room designs last much longer,” Theado says. Yoakam agrees. “It’s going to continue to be a standard going forward,” he says. “It’s a room you use every day and it’s versatile because you can make it as comfortable and as formal as you’d like it to be.” •

Central Ohio Home & Garden BEST OF FALL 2011

15


BEST of Fall Presenting Sponsor

Rosati Windows’

success framed in community service

R

osati Windows founder Mike Rosati finds that the old adage “doing well by doing good” is the best business maxim. As passionate as Rosati is about serving his customers, he’s even more zealous about serving the entire community. The company gives back a portion of every window that the local manufacturing, installation and service company sells. “A portion of every window we sell goes to help those who need it most in our community,” Rosati says. “I have lived in central Ohio my whole life, so I see the needs of the community.” That commitment led the company founder to establish the Rosati Windows Foundation, designed to support worthy local causes. The foundation helps Buckeye Ranch, Ohio Cancer Research Associates, Nurturing Nursing Professionals Scholarships at The Ohio State University, Franklin Park Conservatory, Justice League of Ohio, Columbus Italian Festival, Columbus Piave Club and Access

16 Central Ohio Home & Garden

Health Columbus, which helps Columbus-area residents in need to obtain prescription medications. Rosati Windows Foundation also supports Westerville South High School sports scholarships, allowing students who want to play sports but cannot afford payto-play fees to participate. Rosati’s dedication to

company. We understand clearly that our customers are the lifeblood of our business and that they do us a favor by letting us serve them,” Rosati says. “And we’re proud to let our customers know that we’re as committed to serving the community as we are to serving them.” Rosati Windows’ promise

service permeates the entire company, with customer service at the core of its culture. That obsession with customer service has paid off. Some 40 percent of the company’s business comes via referrals from satisfied customers. “The customer is the most important person in our

to its customers and the community has made it one of the most trusted companies in the home-improvement industry. As a result of that emphasis on integrity, honesty and customer service, Rosati Windows has received the Better Business Bureau’s Business Integrity Award, Columbus Chamber

BEST OF FALL 2011

of Commerce Small Business Leader award, the Angie’s List Super Service Award, the NARI ACE Award and Consumers Choice Awards every possible year. It also is a Business First Corporate Caring Award winner for its strong commitment to community service. The results of all that service are as clear as the windows Rosati makes, sells and installs. Beyond helping thousands of needy local children and families, the company has grown substantially since Mike Rosati launched it in 2000 as the only local manufacturer to sell directly to customers. Since then, Rosati even has been recognized as Ernst & Young’s Entrepreneur of the Year. Show guests can learn more about Rosati Windows’ commitment to customer and community service by visiting the Rosati team at the 2011 BEST of Fall Home Show. In addition, they can learn more about how Rosati Windows boost energy efficiency and save money, while increasing the value of their home.


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Best of Home presented by the BIA

Richard and Linda Goldsmith’s informal dining room is perfect for entertaining family and friends. The table comfortably seats 12 people, and they can dress it up or down, depending on the occasion.

No Rules story BY

JEFF THITOFF

PHOTOS BY

JOHN KNOUFF

Formal doesn’t have to be a Formality Informal dining rooms change the way people eat and live

F

or years, certain design elements were considered essential when building a home. Formal dining rooms, for instance, were considered… well, a formality. The purpose of a formal dining room was not for a simple lunch or a quick snack.

22 Central Ohio Home & Garden

Its reason for being was to host multilayered feasts of epic proportions that featured a large bird, ham or both. The tables were massive and contained enough chairs fit for a king and queen. When the occasion was special, the meal was consumed in the formal dining room. When dormant, BEST OF FALL 2011

the area was almost entombed — sealed and forbidden and always immaculate, as if waiting for someone to host the next big event and bring it back to life. Over time, families became smaller and the space used less often. Even so, dining rooms continued to be built.

That’s no longer the case, however, as people are maximizing the usage of their square footage. Suddenly, the formal dining room was on the chopping block. “For years, people were building these formal dining rooms and they were only using them twice a year —


around the holidays — and then things changed almost overnight,” says Mark Braunsdorf, president of Compass Homes. “It’s probably the fastest change I’ve ever seen in this business.” The decline of the formal dining room has spurred the evolution of the informal dining room and has dramatically altered the way people eat — and live. The morning room, or breakfast room, an eating area within the kitchen, has become more popular for all meals. The space is more open and inviting than a formal dining room. When Compass Homes built a house last year in Dublin for Richard and Linda Goldsmith, she purposefully requested that the formal dining room be omitted. The couple moved from Akron to be closer to their children and grandchildren. “We just didn’t use the dining room much in Akron, but we did have a nice breakfast area,” Linda Goldsmith says. “We had a big kitchen and it just seemed like everyone was in that area all the time.” Goldsmith has an area dedicated just off the kitchen to house her large dining room table and chairs. The open area features plenty of windows and a built-in granite buffet. “There are 12 of us down here, so I have a table to accommodate that many,” Goldsmith says. “We can make it look formal or dressy if we want, but it doesn’t have to be a formal dining room.” “Probably over 50 percent of our customers aren’t building formal dining rooms these days and people are finding new ways to allocate their living space,” Braunsdorf says. “Our standard size for a morning room is 12 by 16 (feet), which is larger than many formal dining rooms.” Restaurants also have contributed to changes in the way people dine at home.

“If you go to places like Brio or the Columbus Fish Market, it’s a big deal to be able to see the kitchen and how they are preparing the food,” Braunsdorf says. “Cooking is an art now.” Kim Pheiffer of Pheiffer Designs and Associates also has noticed the change in thinking. She works with homeowners in re-allocating their formal dining spaces as well as with new homeowners in designing informal dining areas. “Many people are using these large round tables that seat eight to 10 people that can be made to look formal, but have a more informal look,” Pheiffer says. Pheiffer achieved that objective at this year’s BIA Parade of Homes at Olentangy Falls, where she was the interior designer of the Ambassador Homes house. “We put two tables in the dining area, and one was higher like a pub table, and one was a regular-sized table,” Pheiffer says. “We were trying to show people that this is an area that you could play cards in and have fun and doesn’t have to be something that’s so formal that no one ever sets foot in.” More often these days, homeowners, who at one time thought a formal dining room was essential, are having second thoughts. Linda Simmons, of Medallion West in Westerville, made the switch from a formal room to something more versatile. Like others, after committing to a formal dining room when designing the house in 2003, she found she wasn’t using it very often. “We have a hearth room off our kitchen that can seat 12 to14 people and that’s really where people are more comfortable,” Simmons says. “The formal dining room was tucked away and we didn’t like to entertain there, so we

changed it.” The change included a small sofa, two chairs, a couple of tables and a tall library bookcase — complete with a library ladder. The room, which is around 320 square feet, has plenty of family pictures on display, high ceilings and silk curtains. “Sometimes we sit in there and have cocktails and appetizers before having dinner at home or going out to eat somewhere,” Simmons says.

“I call it my wine room, but we use it for a lot more than that. When my mother comes over, she likes to sit in there and read, and it’s her favorite room.” Simmons says when people see the transformation, they are inspired to do the same in their own homes. “I’ve had several friends who have since done other things with their formal dining rooms, and I actually helped a couple of them,” she says. •

Central Ohio Home & Garden BEST OF FALL 2011

23


BEST of Fall Feature Sponsors

Granite Transformations transforming lives as well as kitchens and baths

W

hile many companies tout their efforts to give back to the community, one local home-improvement firm focuses its support in small doses where the need is greatest. For Granite Transformations, standing behind grassroots projects doesn’t always gain the company lots of PR buzz. But its support can truly transform some of the less well-known but most-needed projects — in much the same way they transform a client’s bath or kitchen. “Our motto since we started the company has been that you

receive very little if your fist is tightly closed,” says Granite Transformations Vice President of marketing and sales John Brooks. “By opening your hand to give back, you receive so much more — not just in profits, but in the way it makes you feel and how it impacts our city.” Brooks adds that the company shares its profits with a number of worthwhile causes, including Athletes in Action, Voice of the Martyrs, St. Jude’s and others. In addition to financial support, Granite Transformations donates in-kind products and services, helping transform smaller churches,

schools and other worthwhile sites in need of a new look and more functional space. “We may hear about a worthy church from a client doing business with us. It makes us feel so good to give back to the community, supporting those who have helped Granite Transformations achieve success,” he says. By maintaining close, one-on-one relationships with clients, Brooks and the Granite Transformations team often hear firsthand where the greatest need is within the community. The company’s philosophy

toward community involvement mirrors its core products, which make a major transformation without messy demolition or huge budgets. Granite Transformations’ unique process uses technology to let homeowners cover old, unattractive or non-functioning surfaces with the most beautiful, durable and popular finishes: granite and real stone, Italian glass mosaic and real wood for a fraction of the cost of total replacement. BEST of Fall Home Show guests can learn about the process by visiting the Granite Transformations booth Sept. 9-11 at the Ohio Expo Center.

Ohio Mulch: Good and Green

W

hen Ohio Mulch was looking to give back to the community, the company wanted to keep its green principals in focus. The answer was a natural: Use the company’s 14 central-Ohio locations to help homeowners recycle their food and yard waste and no-longer-used electronics. The company’s convenient locations around the area are becoming repositories for everything from table scraps and tree trimmings to obsolete computers and junked cell phones. “Every month, we recycle more than 25 semis filled with old computers and other electronics,” says Ohio Mulch Director of retail sales Ron

24 Central Ohio Home & Garden

Frost. “It’s exciting to consider that all of those materials — 25 truck loads — are being reused and thus, won’t end up in our landfills.” Frost adds that food and yard waste recycling creates even more of a natural cycle for customers. “They love it! They can drop off bags of yard and food waste, and then turn around and purchase the nutrient-rich compost right in our stores. We create multiple grades of compost from all the waste our customers bring in to recycle. They can then take it home to feed their own yard and garden in the most natural way. It really is recycling at its finest,” Frost says.

BEST OF FALL 2011

As a locally owned company, Ohio Mulch can ensure its mulch is made from top-quality materials. In fact, the company often harvests and replants its trees, ensuring that products are cleaner and greener. In addition, mulching around beds, trees and gardens enhances that commitment to the environment, supporting soil moisture retention and reducing water usage. It slows the growth of weeds and feeds soil with nutrients as it breaks down, so home gardeners can use fewer chemicals to weed and feed. Pine mulch also offers acidity, reducing soil Ph, which is ideal for flowers and vegetables. All of Ohio Mulch’s mulch products — even dyed mulch — are non-

toxic and biodegradable. When Jim Weber opened the first Ohio Mulch retail store in 1984 at just 19 years of age, he likely had no idea it would become one the region’s leading mulch dealers to both residential and commercial customers. And now, with the addition of the new recycling and compost programs, Ohio Mulch is growing even greener in the way in which it serves customers. Consumers can see all varieties of mulch, and learn about the new recycling and composting options at the Ohio Mulch booth at the BEST of Fall Home Show, Sept. 9-11 at the Ohio Expo Center.


A GUIDE TO REMODELING RIGHT

NARI Home Improvement Showcase

Photo courtesy of JS Brown


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Experience the difference with NARI Connecting homeowners with professional home remodelers is part of what the National Association of the Remodeling Industry (NARI) has been doing for the past 26 years. In just a couple of weeks, NARI will be hosting its Home Improvement Showcase — A Tour of Central Ohio’s Finest Remodeled Homes. The tour takes place Saturday, Sept. 17, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Sunday, Sept. 18, from noon to 5 p.m.

This is your opportunity to meet the professionals, ask questions and see firsthand the quality work being done by talented remodelers and designers right here in central Ohio. We invite homeowners to see for themselves why consumers say NARI members are making the difference in their remodeling experiences. For those who have had difficulty locating a skilled contractor, NARI is the best resource in which to turn. NARI contractors undergo a thorough background check and are screened using stringent criteria for experience and craftsmanship. NARI contractors also

Our Values

must display a commitment to the NARI code of ethics. By reading this and future issues of NARI TODAY, homeowners can learn more about locating and working with the most trusted professionals in the remodeling industry. Without fail, this special feature introduces homeowners to the professional members of NARI and serves as a guide to remodeling right. In this issue, homeowners will find tools to help them feel comfortable with making decisions about their remodeling projects. Using these guides will give peace of mind and help produce winning results with your home remodeling

project. Hire a NARI professional and experience the best. We hope you enjoy the content of NARI TODAY. If you have questions about NARI or how to locate a NARI member who can help with your remodeling needs, visit www. TrustNARI.org to get started. We look forward to serving you and seeing you on the tour! Come experience the difference!

Todd Schmidt, CR, President, NARI of Central Ohio, Owner, Renovations Unlimited

integrity, family, honesty, respect, education


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remodeling showcases help homeowners find the right fit

NARI’s Home Improvement Showcase: A Tour of 13 Newly Remodeled Homes Sept. 17 & 18, 2011 Sat., 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sun., Noon to 5 p.m. $10 full tour/$3 single site. Tickets available at each tour location.

Visit www.trustnari.org for show details.

Remodeling your home is a decision that will have a lasting impact on your quality of life. However, finding a professional remodeler that matches your needs and expectations is no easy task. These professionals work in your home — the most intimate and private space you have. Even with all the efforts of social networking and personal advertising, meeting face to face with potential remodelers is still the best way to discover whether you click with a company. Home-improvement and remodeling tours provide great ways to meet multiple remodelers in person within a single afternoon. It’s like speed dating for your home — focus on pursuing the professionals that you feel best match your needs. Attending the NARI Home

Improvement Showcase, to be held Sept. 17 and 18, will provide an intimate environment where homeowners can view remodelers’ work firsthand. Touching a smooth countertop, seeing the details in the craftsmanship and observing the depth of the space are all valuable details for anyone thinking about a remodel. Additionally, knowledgeable staff will be available to answer questions in a lowpressure environment to discuss projects that you might be considering. Following a few guidelines will help you get the most out of a home-remodeling tour.

1. Don’t Limit Yourself

Even if your next project is a bathroom, don’t skip a house just because its project does not fall in the bathroom category. You might miss out on meeting a professional with whom you connect. Instead, focus on design elements you are drawn to within the projects. If you click with someone, companies have additional portfolios that provide examples of other work they have done.

2. You are the Priority

Central Ohio’s leading remodeling companies participate in home showcases to meet people with a keen interest in remodeling their home. Do you fall

Gold

Sponsor: into this category? If so, that means representatives of these companies want to meet you. Keep this in mind, and don’t be afraid to ask questions. These individuals have the information you’re looking for, and they want to share it with you. Plus, the more you interact with a company, the better idea you’ll have as to whether or not they are the right company for you.

3. Note What You Like

Whether it’s a bold glass backsplash, a creamy-gray granite countertop or welcoming smiles and patient answers, keep track of what you like at each home on the tour. Maybe you hate the floors, but love the cabinets. Focus on the positive rather than the negative. It will make the overall experience more enjoyable. What you like always trumps what you don’t, so try not to judge a company based on another customer’s quirky selection. No professional designer will force fuchsia tiles into your home without your consent. The key to viewing customremodeled homes is to understand that your room will be a space with your customizations, not your neighbor’s. By NARI member Annie Coleman of Kresge Contracting kresgecontracting.com

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10129 Abbotshire Village Pl. Powell 43065 Project by: Nicholson Builders www.nicholsonbuilders.com Contemporary kitchen featuring a custom island with radius details, multilevel counters and circular freestanding table. Directions: From the north end of I-270, exit to SR 315 North and follow to old SR 315/Olentangy River Road. Follow to Abbotsford Green Drive, and turn left on Abbotsford Green Drive. Turn left on Abbotshire Village Place.

2

7081 Olentangy River Rd. Columbus 43235 Project by: Kresge Contracting www.kresgecontracting.com Redesigned within its original space, this classic kitchen complements the client’s practical and aesthetic needs. Directions: From I-270, go south on U.S. 23, right on West Wilson Bridge Road, and then right on Olentangy River Road. The house will be on the left. From SR 315, go west on Olentangy River Road. House will be on left.

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195 Highland Ave. Worthington 43085 Project by: DiYanni Remodeling www.diyanniremodeling.com Completely remodeled home — New front, new bathrooms and a showstopping kitchen! House for sale — come see! Directions: From I-270, take exit U.S. 23 South/North High Street toward Worthington. Continue to follow North High Street 1.2 miles. Turn left onto Highland Avenue. House will be on the right.

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299 Blandford Dr. Worthington 43085 Project by: Eagle Specialty Remodeling www.eagleknowsremodeling.com Remodeled kitchen and bathrooms of 1960s ranch while working closely with homeowner to control costs. Directions: From SR 161, east of SR 315 and west of High Street, go south on Seabury (across from Thomas Worthington High School football field). Seabury winds around and becomes Blandford. House is on the south side of the street.

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119 W. Riverglen Dr. Worthington 43085 Project by: Dave Fox Design Build Remodelers www.davefox.com A whole-house makeover featuring new kitchen, family room addition, new master suite and patio. Directions: From SR 161, go to High Street (U.S. 23) and head south. Go through downtown Worthington and turn right on West Riverglen Drive. House is on the left.

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117 Riverview Park Dr. Columbus 43214 Project by: Nicholson Builders www.nicholsonbuilders.com Major interior renovations involving massive kitchen and highly detailed sunroom with integrated technology. Directions: From I-71 take the Morse Road exit and head west to High Street. Head south on High. Turn right from High Street to Riverview Park Drive.

7

54 Erie Rd. Columbus 43214 Project by: Griffey Remodeling www.griffeyremodeling.com Complete kitchen remodel, removal of interior walls and addition of a screened porch. Directions: Take I-71 to North

Broadway, go west on E. North Broadway, turn right on North High Street, and then left on Erie Road.

8

3911 Riverview Dr. Columbus 43221 Project by: Renovations Unlimited www.renovationsunlimited.com A whole-house renovation including a master bathroom, 1 1/2 bathrooms, kitchen, sunroom, mudroom and garage. Directions: From I-270, take the Fishinger Road exit going east toward Upper Arlington. Turn left (north) on Dublin Road; turn right onto Riverview. The home will be on the right side.

9

2691 Leeds Rd. Columbus 43221 Project by: Collamore Built www.collamorebuilt.com Modern-style kitchen remodeled in mid-century, ranch-style home. Directions: From SR 315 exit at Lane Avenue. Go west on Lane Avenue to Leeds Road (the last street before Route 33). Turn right on Leeds Road.

10

1920 Berkshire Rd. Columbus 43221 Project by: Ketron Custom Builders www.ketroncustombuilders.com Renovated to the way we live today. Kitchen, living room, master suite and much more. Directions: From Lane Avenue, take

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326 Reinhard Ave. Columbus 43206 Project by: Keefer Contractors www.keefercontractors.com First-floor addition includes family room, laundry room, full bathroom, additional closet space and interior stairway to existing basement entrance. Directions: From I-71 take the Broad Street exit. Go east on Broad, south on Parsons Avenue, then turn right onto Reinhard.

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Northwest Boulevard south. Berkshire Road is the second road south of Lane. Turn right (west) on Berkshire Road.

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2611 Fair Ave. Bexley 43209 Project by: NJW Construction www.njwconstruction.com Two-story multiroom addition: family room, master bath, master walk-in closet and mudroom. Directions: From Main Street go left (east) on South Drexel Avenue (U.S. 40), and go 0.4 mile. Turn right on Fair Avenue, and go 0.4 mile. House is on the right.

13

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a guide to remodeling right

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12 Pickett Pl. New Albany 43054 Project by: Dave Fox Design Build Remodelers www.davefox.com A basement finish featuring kitchen, full bathroom, bedroom, media room, craft room and large gathering area — all finished with upscale materials. Directions: From I-270 take Route 161 east — the New Albany/Hamilton Road exit. Turn right. Go left onto East Dublin-Granville Road. Pass Harlem Road and take the next right on Pickett Place. Turn right and follow to 12 Pickett Place.


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PHOTOS COURTESY OF GREENSCAPES LANDSCAPE ARCHITECTS & CONTRACTORS

WINTER SPRING

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n order to have a successful landscape in the spring, you must begin in the fall. This is important to help your plants survive harsh Ohio winters. Many homeowners are unaware that, with a few simple steps, they can keep their landscaping healthy and ready for spring. Lawns are the biggest attraction in landscaping. For a homeowner who enjoys a lush, green lawn, fall preparation is extremely important. Your lawn builds its root system during nari of central ohio

the winter. As such, the more you prepare and give it attention now, the healthier and greener it will be. 1. Mow your lawn until it no longer grows. The final cut should measure one adjustment level shorter than normal. Leftover leaves will suffocate your grass, so make sure you remove them and bag them up. 2. Fertilize your lawn in November, as this will provide your grass the essential nutrients it needs to promote root growth over the long winter

months. 3. Weeds also are preparing for the winter season, so a weed treatment is very important to keep your lawn weed free in the spring. The winter can be long and dry, and just as damaging to your plants as the summer’s high temperatures. By following these tips, your plants will be ready for spring. 1. Make sure there are no bare soil spots, and the mulch depth should be 1 to 2 inches. This keeps roots insulated from extreme temperature changes

and retains moisture for the upcoming months. 2. Most plants, especially trees, will benefit from fall fertilization. 3. Keep watering plants until the last frost, as the winter can be extremely dry and harmful. 4. Avoid late-season pruning, the plants need time to harden off before frost to avoid damage. 5. Gently remove heavy snow from the plants, as damage could occur to cold and brittle branches. Once the snow starts, www.trustnari.org


Your lawn builds its root system during the winter. As such, the more you prepare and give it attention now, the healthier and greener it will be. keeping walkways and driveways clear is important. The best suggestion is to promptly remove the snow, as the sun will help dry out the hard surfaces. Sand always is great to use and will not damage the a guide to remodeling right

pavement. Try to keep chemical use to a minimum. Over time, the chemicals can damage your hard surfaces.

Natural Stone The least damaging chemical recommended for snow and ice removal is calcium magnesium acetate, but it may damage the stone with prolonged use over time. However, prompt snow removal and the use of sand for traction is recommended, thereby eliminating the use of chemicals on natural stone.

Pavers If chemicals are needed, use extreme caution. Overuse will damage the pavers. If regular chemical applications are needed, sealing the pavers in the fall is recommended.

Concrete Keep chemicals off concrete wall stone commonly used for steps. They usually have half the PSI rating of pavers and, therefore, are less dense and more porous. No chemicals should be used during the first year because the

concrete is still curing. Never use chemicals with ammonium. They are extremely harmful and will quickly disintegrate concrete. Other deicing chemicals can be used under extreme conditions, use carefully and do not over apply. If chemicals will be used, keep up to date on sealing the concrete. By NARI member Marc Aubry of GreenScapes Landscape Architects & Contractors www.greenscapes.net

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Great Outdoors Gardening expert michael leach says if your landscape looks tired, overgrown or out-of-date, fall is the perfect time to make amends.

Ahead Spring With Fall Gardening and Landscaping

f w to Besme Sho Ho l l a F

t h g i l t o sp ch lea l e ha mic Sept. 9

BEST OF FALL 2011 Central Ohio Home & Garden

49


Great Outdoors

D

o as knowledgeable designers and gardeners do — dig in after summer’s dog days to tackle projects from lawn improvement and perennial planting to patio installation and complete makeovers. Think of autumn as a second spring — and a second chance to tackle plans washed away during the April, May and June deluges. “Fall is pretty much a good time to do anything,” says Mike Moulton, who handles sales and design for Five Seasons Landscape Management in Reynoldsburg. “Fall is the best time for (planting) most plants.” Adds Terry Killilea, owner of Warwick’s Landscaping in Gahanna, “There’s less maintenance, less watering and less heat stress on the plants.” This also means less work for homeowners. Not to mention that fall weather typically is splendid — with warm days that make outdoor chores a pleasure and gardens sparkle. Crisp evenings are ideal for cozying up around a fire pit or al fresco fireplace. Another autumn bonus is the clearance sales at garden centers. With so much going for autumn, why does spring get all the attention? Obviously, winter’s cabin fever creates a backyard frenzy during the first warm days, plus there’s the psychological angle. “Most people are so in tune to outdoor holiday parties for Memorial Day, Father’s Day and Fourth of July that once they’re done with (those), they’re kind of tired,” says Moulton, a certified landscape professional. But instead of tossing in the trowel and stowing the patio furniture, follow the horticultural in crowd down

50 Central Ohio Home & Garden

plant and transplant perennials, such as day lilies and iris, by the end of September to allow roots time to take hold before cold weather. Trees and shrubs, however, can be planted until the soil freezes, sometimes not until December.

Voracious Veggies

Hurry to plant seeds for truly garden-fresh salads of lettuce, radishes, turnips, Story by MICHAEL

LEACH

the garden path for a rousing farewell to summer and a head start on spring.

Lush Lawns

Early September is the best time for sowing grass seed.

Photos by John Knouff

October or early November. Sodding, weed killing and other improvements also are best done in September. Keep mowing as long as necessary. Drop the blade to its lowest setting for the final trim.

Bulbs Abloom

Daffodils, crocus, tulips, lilies and other favorites must be planted in fall to ensure good root growth. Tie back floppy perennials and annuals to make planting easier. Autumn crocus and colchicum should be planted immediately. Their lavender, white and pink flowers are ideal candidates to brighten ground covers.

Warm soil and cool temperatures are ideal for germination. Don’t dawdle — roots need time to establish before cold weather, according to The Ohio State University Extension-Franklin County. Fall fertilizing produces root growth (not more mowing) that helps grass to green up sooner in spring and weather summer droughts. OSU recommends a fertilizer application in early September and a second in late

BEST OF FALL 2011

Lighten, Brighten

Move beyond mums for fall color. Asters, Japanese anemones, golden rods, boltonia, sedum and ornamental grass are among perennials that can brighten the scene by enhancing summer annuals and roses.

Take Root

Because roots continue growing until soil freezes, you can add or move most perennials, shrubs and trees in fall. Many gardeners prefer to

kale, chard, collards and other quick-growing vegetables. Most pair deliciously with the last tomatoes, peppers, zucchini and other hot-weather favorites. Collards and kale might survive winter to provide early spring greens.

If You Build It

April showers bring flowers and building delays. This year’s drenched spring backlogged projects well into summer, Moulton says. Fall generally is drier making it better for building patios, decks, ponds, walks and other structures. Moulton schedules planting for new projects in autumn to avoid stressing plants with summer heat and drought. Doing a building project now means a one-step operation, not two. You’ll have a finished look that will be even more appealing in spring. •


*Wreaths *Garlands *Centerpieces * Straw *Corn Shocks * Pumpkins


BEST of Fall

Home Show features HGTV’s Vern Yip, foodies, appraisals and more

VERN YIP

T

his year’s BEST of Fall Home Show, presented by Rosati Windows, will leave guests with loads of fall entertaining, cooking, decorating and landscaping ideas, as well as free appraisals and help with every imaginable home-improvement project. A host of celebrity guests will entertain and enlighten show-goers, including:

VERN RETURNS

Demand was so great to bring back the HGTV star who visited in 2008 that show officials tracked down Vern Yip on the set of his newest hit, Urban Oasis (he’s also a judge on Design Star) and convinced him to come back to Columbus. Guests can hear design tips and ideas from the engaging Yip, who also will sign autographs during two appearances on Sunday, Sept. 11. While here in ’08, Yip met local decorative artist, Michael Boudreault and subsequently featured him on episodes of De-

52 Central Ohio Home & Garden

MICHAEL RUHLMAN

serving Design and on the Aug. 27 airing of Urban Oasis. Boudreault also will be at the show on Sept. 11, demonstrating dazzling paint techniques for walls and furniture.

RUHLMAN RULES

One of the nation’s most popular cookbook authors, food writers and bloggers, Michael Ruhlman will share his experience and expertise with audiences at the show on Saturday, Sept. 10 at 3 p.m. The Ohio native made a name for himself translating the chef ’s craft for every kitchen, authoring numerous books, articles and cookbooks and appearing on popular food shows such as Iron Chef America and Cooking Under Fire. He’s also been a featured guest on Anthony Bourdain’s No Reservations. Ruhlman’s book, Ratio, is seen by many as the bible to good cooking, offering home cooks the secret to unlocking any recipe via the perfect ratio of ingredients.

BEST OF FALL 2011

JOSH OZERSKY

OZERSKY’S BACK

Also on Saturday, Sept. 10, burger guru and James Beard Award-winner Josh Ozersky will bring back his incredibly popular cooking demonstration from last spring’s Home & Garden Show. Time magazine food writer and author of The Hamburger: A History, Ozersky will share his lively burgercooking tips with show guests on the Home Idea Center Stage, where he’ll show crowds the secret to his expertly crafted and painstakingly researched hamburger recipe. Plus, he’ll share with the crowd samples of one-of-akind smoked meats from local charcuterie, Thurn’s Specialty Meats.

TRASH OR TREASURE?

Nationally syndicated columnist and TV personality Dr. Lori and her free appraisals are the prescription for anyone curious about the value of grandma’s heirloom or that

DR. LORI

flea market find. Show guests are encouraged to arrive early and bring one item to see if it’s trash or treasure. Appraisals are limited and offered firstcome, first-served. Dr. Lori can appraise items pictured in a photograph. On her last visit, Dr. Lori shocked one local show guest who discovered that her aunt’s vases were worth more than $10,000. Another woman’s china doll was appraised at $3,500.

BUGGING OUT

Dr. Insecta will appear at the show, introducing guests of all ages to some of the coolest live insects on the planet. Kids and adults will walk away with loads of fun facts about each critter and will have the chance to experience their own close encounters with the insect world’s gentle giants. From hissing Madagascar to hairy arachnids, foot-long millipedes and even an emperor scorpion named Darth Vader, this incredible insect zoo will create a real buzz at the show. •


f t oShow s e B me Ho Fall

M

ichael Boudreault specializes in creating life-like and life-size scenes and designs on the walls, ceilings and surfaces of people’s homes. Some have dubbed him a modern-day Michelangelo. Boudreault, who is based in Columbus, has appeared on HGTV’s Deserving Design with Vern Yip. The two hit it off at a 2008 Central Ohio Home & Garden BEST of Fall Show. Since appearing on TV, Boudreault’s clientele base has grown. He has painted the foyer of a NASCAR team owner as well as done projects for numerous other local and national celebrities. Public examples of this gifted man’s work can be seen in schools and hospitals. In no way, however, does Boudreault consider himself above doing smaller jobs. Nor does he seem fazed by his recent rise in popularity. Boudreault was raised in southern Florida and has a degree in art education. He made a life- and career-changing decision — he stopped teaching and decided to pursue painting full time — after a trip with his junior high school students to Italy, where he visited the Sistine Chapel. Boudreault is married to Danielle, who teaches first grade. The couple has two children — Kayla, 14, and Christo, 12. The family moved here from North Carolina in 2006.

t h g i l t o sp EPT. 11 ULT DREA U BO

MICHAELS

story by rebecca

walters

Photo by John Knouff

M ichael Boudreault O ,M B D P &M wner

ichael

oudreault

What do you think about being dubbed as the modern-day Michelangelo? It’s an honor because he is my favorite artist. It’s probably because I relate to his trajectory of work – he didn’t just sit there and paint and suffer on canvas. He painted buildings

ecorative

and he painted the people and it was a job, and he didn’t always love it. The Sistine Chapel just about killed him. I think that — and it’s almost sacrilegious to say — but he was the ultimate decorative artist, really. He adorned buildings with ornament and

ainting

urals

decorative beauty and he made them look even better — to enhance the architecture. I’ve always admired the fact that (painting) was a job, and artisans were well respected back then — as artists and as laborers — that were of a higher value.

Central Ohio Home & Garden BEST OF FALL 2011

53


BEST of Fall Describe your signature style. European in nature. I like French, German and particularly the Italian painters — fresco painters — Tiepolo, Michelangelo, Botticelli. I just like that style of work. I have a more simplified version of it just so people can afford it. It’s basically about design and using artistic expression in design. Your trip to Italy was lifechanging. How has appearing on national television changed your life? Being on TV is great and everything, but it is hard to parlay a TV appearance into a windfall of jobs and cash. It gives you credibility and people trust you a little bit more, and that has helped me a lot. But this economy was tough on everyone — even the people who are in the luxury business. Plus, not all of my clients are rich. When times have been really slow — no mural work or anything — I would do house painting when I needed to. Work wise, what has been your most rewarding experience? (Unpaid jobs) usually are the most rewarding ones. But there really is no altruistic act ever — there’s always some self-serving aspect to it. But, I did a mural for a cancer center, one at St. Vincent’s Children’s Center and a couple murals at Worthington Estates Elementary School. I think when the kids just sit there and watch you paint is so great… They watch and they ask you really cool questions — and some of them are really interesting — I think that’s the most rewarding. What inspires you on a daily basis? What makes you wake up in the morning and say, ‘I’m

doing what I’m supposed to with my life?’ I want my kids and my wife to be proud of me and I want them to see me happy working so that they’ll find something that they enjoy doing. I truly am so lucky that I do something that I love that pays my bills. You changed directions after your trip to Italy. Do you believe in fate or happenstance? Will you ever return to teaching? I really love teaching. I think I would be a better teacher now and not be so cocky and arrogant. I’m still cocky and arrogant, but I’ve been humbled by life and by having kids. Now when I look into the eyes of someone’s kid, I’m looking at someone’s child who just adores them, and you know what that feels like. When it comes to changing direction, I’m a chicken. My wife always says ‘Go for it, go, go, go.’ She has been so supportive and never held me back in any way. I’m the one who holds us back. When I graduated, I was handpicked to go to Japan to start a discipline-based art education program for American executives. I had just accepted a teaching job in North Carolina, everything was set — we had just settled in, we had just gotten married. (My wife) said, ‘Let’s do it, let’s go to Japan!” I was petrified, I chickened out. I should have listened to her. After a day of creating, where do you go in your house to relax and unwind? My deck. I love sitting on my deck. I love nature. I sit and talk to my wife about our days and enjoy a martini. What grounds you? My family. Period. •

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At Home With

PETER A. ROBINSON

Story by NANCY BYRON PhotoS by JOHN KNOUFF

Lifelong learner considers himself old school

H

e has a degree in clinical psychology, lives in a barn and is a Class-A racquetball player. He’s also an award-winning contractor. His art-deco remodel of a neighbor’s master bath recently earned him local, regional and national Contractor of the Year awards in the $60,000-plus category from the National Association of the Remodeling Industry (NARI). Clearly, Peter A. Robinson, owner and president of Peter A.

56

Robinson Remodeling, is a man of many facets. He’s hiked the Appalachian Trail. He used to help his uncle restore circus wagons. He went to college on a football scholarship and he went through a motorcycle phase for about three years. It was on one of these twowheeled jaunts through the countryside when Robinson stumbled upon his true love: the former Kitzmiller family barn in Blacklick. “I wasn’t even looking for a

BEST OF FALL 2011 Central Ohio Home & Garden

house,” Robinson says. “I just fell in love with it without even going inside.” It took nearly two years to restore the old, neglected barn, built circa 1876, to a point where he could live in it year round. “It’s a money pit, but I love the building,” Robinson says. “It’s totally beautiful to me. It’s got exposed beams on the inside. It’s got a lot of history. It used to be a boarding house in the ’30s. It was a raucous party place in the ’40s. It’s had fires

Peter A. Robinson never wants to stop learning. Just take a look at his résumé and hobbies. “I don’t care how old you are, there’s always something new around the corner,” he says. in it.” Robinson saw potential and turned it into a cozy four bedroom, 2 1/2 bath home with a wood-burning fireplace in the living room. He did much of the woodworking himself — the staircase, flooring and bathroom trim — and furnished it mostly with antique pieces passed down from his family. “I like to do woodworking,” Robinson says. “It helps me


relax.” Robinson also finds solace outdoors. “I love yard work and gardening,” he says, noting that his semirural property encompasses roughly 1 1/2 acres. He operates the company in a building situated behind his residence on the property as well. “I love to work outdoors,” Robinson adds. And he loves to play there. “My wife has a place in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan right on the water in the middle of nowhere,” he says. “We go up every year. I love solitude. I love to just go out in the woods and get lost with Cooper, my Bernese Mountain Dog.” Robinson considers himself “old school.” To that end, he has several antique tools proudly displayed on a beam in

is not going to go the way I want and that every person is not going to like me — all the things you don’t want to hear, but you know are true. George was not an educated man, but he had common sense beyond anybody.” One of Robinson’s favorite mantras comes from Frank: “We don’t have excuses. We make choices.” “When you think about that, you can apply that to anything, anytime,” Robinson says. “If you have a meeting and you say you can’t make that meeting, you made a choice to do something else with your time.” In 1972, Robinson, who was the first in his family to graduate from college, made a simple choice — a choice that ultimately plotted the course for a career in home remodel-

‘IT USED TO BE A BOARDING HOUSE IN THE ’30S… A RAUCOUS PARTY HOUSE IN THE ’40S.’ his living room. “It’s just a reminder that things were done with great care and patience and a love for building in the early days,” he explains. “It’s something I don’t want to let people forget.” Robinson’s old-school roots might have been what drew him to George Frank, one of the founders of NARI of Central Ohio, who — despite being nearly 30 years his senior — became one of Robinson’s closest mentors before his death in 2004. “He taught me so much just about life and people and how to deal with people,” Robinson says. “I lost my dad at a very early age, around 20, and that affected me for many, many years. So I kind of adopted George as my father/mentor. He taught me that every job

ing. “We were right in the middle of a war, a big recession was going on, job placement was almost nonexistent,” he recalls. “So here I am with this great college degree, high on the hog and realizing I’m going nowhere fast. I wasn’t going to go hungry, so while I was looking for my permanent job in psychology, I was going to step back, start building small things and just keep busy.” After all, he’d grown up working side-by-side with his father, who managed a lumber company in Connecticut, and his uncle, who was a master carpenter. Building was a logical fallback. “The fact is, I really enjoy what I do — and you have to,” he says. “This isn’t a job to me. It’s a lifestyle.” • BEST OF FALL 2011 Central Ohio Home & Garden

57


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Gourmet Style

Kitchen

Islands

T

A gathering spot for all occasions Story by JEFF THITOFF photos by John Knouff

he word “island” evokes thoughts of a shipwrecked survivor, a quiet and lonely place of solitude. Put “kitchen” in front of it, and it

becomes a place for culinary creations, social gatherings and festive times.


K

itchen islands have become a staple in most homes. They are as different in style as kitchens are in size. Having one gives homeowners more options in the kitchen. “It’s not only a great aesthetic focal point of the room, but it also plays a major role in establishing the social environment for the kitchen,” says Caryn Badgeley, partner and lead designer for Alterna – Kitchen Bath and Home, located in Harrison West. “It’s crucial to the functional flow of the area and gives more definition to the kitchen.” “More and more people are wanting a secondary sink installed with the island,” Badgeley says. “One of our more popular models has a standard double bowl with a lower dividing unit — so you can more easily wash larger items and still have the ability to separate water on each side.” People are incorporating more drawers and things such as bookshelves to allow for more storage, adds Alan Preston, president of Preston’s Architectural Restoration. “It’s really becoming a quality piece of

furniture in the middle of the kitchen and it catches your eye when you come in the room,” he says. “Sometimes people are having an island that is a completely different color than the rest of the kitchen to make it stand out even more.” Granite is the most popular kitchen island surface because it’s individualized, looks great and is extremely durable. “Granite has also become more affordable, and it really gives that ‘pop’ to the island,” Badgeley says. One of the more unusual requests Badgeley has received is countertops made from paper. The process involves layering long sheets of individually dyed paper that are between one-quarter of an inch to three inches thick. “It was originally designed to use in skateboard parks, exterior paneling on homes and we’ve even used it as shower panels,” Badgeley says. “It’s unique, very resistant to water, feels like a wood countertop and has a rich color palette.” Millie White of Upper Arlington badly wanted a kitchen island in her Cape Codstyle home.

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Specifically, she wanted an island large enough to seat six to eight people, and was hoping for some added storage space. The challenge: White’s kitchen wasn’t big enough to accommodate a 10-footlong island, Badgeley says. However, White was not deterred. She wanted the island more than the small room located just off the kitchen. “I chose to blow it out and just make my kitchen bigger,” White says. The other challenge was finding a section of granite large enough. “The piece she found is close to four feet wide,” Badgeley says. White knows the island is poised to be the focal point of her new room. “It’s basically becoming a room with a large gathering spot right… Hopefully it’s going to look like the island has been in the house forever.” That line of thinking is what other homeowners are striving to accomplish. “The kitchen island is a gathering area,” Preston says. “It’s more than just an area to make the food — it’s a focal point.” •

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Central Ohio Home and Garden Magazine - Fall 2011  

Central Ohio Home and Garden Magazine - Fall 2011

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