Crystal Design Winners Feature Eye for Detail,
PRINCETON, MN For many designers, satisfying their client with a
personalized space is the most fulfilling part of the job. But,
sometimes, their creativity and attention to detail is so telling
that it needs to be rewarded.
With that in mind, Crystal’s 2003 Design Contest initiated in
1999 by Crystal Cabinet Works, Inc., based here serves as a tool to
recognize extraordinary kitchen projects designed using the
For example, in the design that took top honors in the contest’s
Kitchen category, designer Katrina Shirk of Cincinnati, OH-based
Nisbet Brower used Crystal’s Deephaven Inset cabinetry which
features a CGH with Signature Antique White and Butterscotch
highlights, as well as Premium Alder with a Signature Salem finish
and Port highlights. A plethora of unique cabinetry details such as
grape Enkenboll corbels, moldings and onlays, reeded torus
assemblies and a three-piece stacked crown molding help to create a
stunning Country French kitchen that’s rich in detail.
Three-centimeter Labrador Golden granite countertops with ogee
edges and limestone tiles on the backsplash add to the Country
French feel of this kitchen design. High-end appliances, such as an
existing 48″ Sub-Zero unit with new, matching wood panels and a 48″
GE Monogram stainless steel, dual-fuel professional range and
warming drawer, offer both functional value and beauty.
Meanwhile, second-place winner Connie Strohmyer of CS Kitchen &
Bath Studio in Lincoln, NE applied custom cherry wood cabinetry
from Crystal with a Signature Nutmeg finish to her kitchen layout,
creating a beautiful, yet functional Arts-and-Crafts design. The
kitchen also features granite Verde Butterfly countertops,
porcelain tile flooring and such upscale appliances as a 48″
Sub-Zero unit and 36″ Viking Range Corp. cooktop, warming drawer
According to Jeanine Weinzierl, director of marketing services
for Crystal, these wining projects along with the other roughly 140
submissions that came in from throughout the U.S., Canada and the
Bahamas were judged on the appropriateness of the elements used,
the overall use of space, how well the designer or dealer overcame
the design challenges of the space and how well the space
translates in photography.
All winners whose projects were completed between July 2001 and
December 2002 received award plaques, while first-place winners
received a $1,500 gift certificate, plus promotional opportunities
in Crystal’s marketing materials schedule.
Following is a snapshot of this year’s winning designs in the
Kitchen and Other Rooms categories.
Eye for detail
Earning grand-prize honors this year, Nisbet Brower’s Shirk
displayed a keen eye for detail in this Country French kitchen
remodel, according to Weinzierl.
“One of the main reasons she won was that she had an elaborate
use of crown molding,” Weinzierl explains, pointing to the
aforementioned reeded torus assemblies, grape Enkeboll corbels,
moldings and onlays, and a three-piece stacked crown molding.
Shirk’s use of Deephaven Inset cabinetry creates an inviting feel
for the space, Weinzierl notes. “This kitchen combines the
traditional formal look of the painted cabinets with the warmth of
the Premium Alder island.”
However, she notes, the focal point of the kitchen is the custom
mantle hood, which features applied molding, Enkeboll molding and
“One of the custom tall cabinets has two sections with tip-up
pocket doors to hide the GE Profile microwave in one and small
appliances in the second,” she adds.
Completing the design are a Franke sink, Blanco faucets and
ceramic tile flooring.
Work of Art
In second-place winner
Strohmyer’s new-construction kitchen design, Arts-and-Crafts style
was turned into a work of art, notes Weinzierl. The design features
a functional layout with a Prairie-style design approach.
“This octagonal kitchen space needed to reflect the Prairie
features in the rest of this home. It is a good interpretation of
the Arts-and-Crafts style,” says Weinzierl.
Strohmyer integrated custom cabinetry from Crystal Cabinet
Works, Inc. into a functional design for the client, who had
requested that the cabinetry extend al the way up to the top of the
10′-high ceilings. To maintain function, Strohmyer uniformly lined
the ceiling with uppers while specifying special mullion crosses
for the custom-made, stained-glass inserts.
Adding to the personalized look, custom square corner legs were
integrated into the island, hutch and peninsula end cabinet.
Additionally, the custom drawer style used was designed to meet the
client’s taste, while wearing and a flat sheen were applied to
further enhance the unique design. Granite Verde Butterfly
countertops add a warm aesthetic to the space.
Strohmyer adds: “In order to give some weight and detail at the
ceiling, I filled in the space with a panel bottom-edge-profiled to
match the doors and large, deluxe, half-round (LDHR) molding.”
Completing the product line-up is a KitchenAid dishwasher; Grohe
faucet; Elkay stainless steel, undermount sink; Period Brass
hardware; and porcelain tile flooring.
Fusing Mediterranean style
with a unique furniture look, the design staff of Showcase Kitchens
in Vancouver, BC, Canada, set this kitchen apart to earn
third-place honors, according to Weinzierl.
Featuring Crystal’s Elite door style in Red Oak with a black
stain and Signature finish, along with cracking, wearing and
distressing, the center island stands as the focal point of the
design, she further notes.
Meant to look more like a table or furniture, the island blends
with the overall design theme while creating a focal point for
users through the use of 4″-thick French limestone countertops.
In describing the kitchen Weinzierl says: “This design displays
a very good use of space, especially if you look at the back wall,
the lighted cabinets [and] the crown molding detail along with the
use of legs on the island. The massiveness of the design worked
well with the space.”
Adding a sense of elegance to the space, the design staff
selected CGH with Signature Frosty White and Caramel highlights,
wearing and distressing. To enhance functionality, the storage area
was designed to mimic the aesthetic of a hutch, notes Earl Lawson,
principal of Showcase Kitchens.
The design staff then integrated a 48″ Viking refrigerator,
range and dishwasher, as well as an apron sink from Kohler
and blended these products with hardware imported from England.
Complementing the appliances and the island is a custom-finished
plaster hood canopy/hearth, which features wood moldings and lends
a subtle warmth to the space.
Featuring a personal library/
media center, an office and family room, winners of the Other Rooms
category offer elegant and unique design applications, as well,
Earning grand-prize honors was Leslie O’Connor of Bellevue,
WA-based International Kitchens, who used Crystal’s custom door
style on cherry and a custom finish to create a visually stunning
and inviting space designed to meet the client’s needs.
Asked to create a space to house the client’s many books,
O’Connor designed a stunning floor-to-ceiling bookcase that is both
out of the way, yet easily accessible. Enhancing the design,
O’Connor integrated a desk on the right-hand side, as well as a
television and fireplace, to increase the warmth of the space.
Describing O’Connor’s design, Weinzierl offers: “The designer
used the entire wall as storage space in a very unique way.”
Receiving second-place honors, Mark Moyle of Craftman’s Kitchen in
Nassau, Bahamas, selected Crystal’s Regent door style
on Birch with a natural finish to create a contemporary and
streamlined look in his home office design.
“The overall clean look was well-proportioned in the space,”
Connie Strohmyer of CS Kitchen & Bath Studio once again used
the Arts-and-Crafts theme of her second-place kitchen in her unique
family room, earning her firm third-place Other Rooms honors in the
process, Weinzierl notes.
Incorporating Crystal’s custom door style on cherry with a
Signature Nutmeg finish, she created a stunning media center for a
family room, backlit over the top and complete with storage space,
room for a television and shelves for family photos or