New technology and accessories for kitchens are forever changing, but some people are wary about using high-tech or untested products. We understand that apprehension and it’s one of the reasons why we try to install these new “gadgets” in our showroom displays so our clients can see them and we can do some testing of our own. While some features are introduced and quickly fade, there are others that we see clients immediately embrace. Here are 5 “new-ish” features whose popularity, due to the benefits they bring, has us incorporating them into more and more of our designs. We think Inspector Gadget would be pleased!
1) The Docking Drawer®
Docking Drawer® is probably the market leader of in-drawer electrical & USB outlets. This feature is great for desk areas or anywhere that you need a functional power source with clutter-free aesthetics.
2.) Angled Power Strips
Angled power strips (“plug mold”) are not new but we do use them a lot when we don’t want to disturb a beautiful backsplash with outlets and switches. The angle on the power strip makes it easier to plug things in than a “straight plug mold and now these angled power strips are even equipped with optional USB ports AND built-in LED lighting!
3) Magic Corner
Blind-corner cabinets or “dead-corner” cabinets have always been a storage nightmare. Half-circle swingout shelves have helped make those cabinets more useful but now there’s a new twist on those units. The Magic Corner, as it’s referred to by many, makes these corner cabinets a “dream!” With these units, all the items that are stored on the shelves are brought forward and totally out of the cabinet. Making retrieval of items a breeze.
4) Touch-to-Open Drawers
Most people are familiar with touch-to-open doors, but touch-to-open drawers have been a bit more difficult to engineer because of the popular “soft-close, self-closing” feature on most drawer tracks. An electrical drawer opening system (Blum’s Servo-Drive) was introduced about 10 years ago, but it was, and still is, fairly expensive because of the need for electrical outlets, wiring, transformers, etc. But the Servo-Drive works great, especially on pullout wastebasket cabinets. Blum has now developed drawer tracks with a self-opening trigger built into the track, called “Tip-On Blumotion”. The drawer will open with just a slight push on the cabinet front. This new track with the built-in mechanical trigger, not an electrical trigger is a relatively inexpensive feature to add to the cabinetry.
5) Corian Charging Surface
While the docking drawer is great for charging a cell phone and keeping countertops clutter-free, some prefer to keep their cells phones in plain sight while it’s charging.
Many smartphones and tablets already include the ability to charge using induction technology, and adapters, but now the charger (or “transmitters”) can be built under your solid surface countertop (Corian or Corian Quartz). The Corian Charging Surface incorporates a transmitter that is hidden from view to power up smartphones, tablets and more, wirelessly. To charge, you just place the device on your countertop in the designated area. Charging stops automatically when your battery is full.
Your Minneapolis & St. Paul Kitchen & Bath Design-Build Resource
Considering a kitchen design or kitchen remodel project and want to see some of these features in person? Visit the Sawhill Custom Kitchens & Design showroom at International Market Square in Minneapolis, MN. We are the Twin Cities expert in kitchen & bath design, offering a concierge experience to your kitchen or bath design/build/remodel experience, tailoring our process to your needs and taking care of the details from start to finish. We can’t wait to meet you!