New kitchen Ideas That Work, by Jamie Gold is, simply, a good book, a great reference, and a source of inspiration for the entire kitchen design process. Upfront, I've got to say that I heartily endorse this book as a go-to manual for homeowners to get those "kitchen ducks" in a row before you spend your first (or second, first being this book) dime on your kitchen.
As I've said before on this blog, I've lost a friendship over choosing not to review a book on kitchen design due to its errors and overall sub-par quality and have declined to review another book by an author I did not know for the same reason. Thus, I take the subject matter very seriously, being a certified kitchen designer for many years.
I know the author of New Kitchen Ideas That Work, Jamie Gold, quite well. We have been friends and colleagues for a number of years. Of course, I must also mention that images of one of MY kitchens is in this book. That's all well and good, but still, if this book did not meet my standards, overall, for kitchen design information, I would absolutely pass on doing a review. And, as noted above, my knowing the author has no influence on my decision to review this book.
I love the way the chapters are organized. The topics have a progression which makes perfect sense within he framework of a kitchen project and makes it easy to understand the process and to find the information you need. The tone of the text is conversational and the content is easy to understand, making it read almost like a novel - it's actually a pleasant read! You feel as if you are being spoken to by a trusted design professional whom you have known a long time and have a lovely rapport with.
The reader is not being told to replace everything, but to pick and choose - wisely, with recommendations: choose a facelift or complete remodel which, of course, also relates to budget issues. Jamie walks you through this decision making process and many others throughout the book.
Islands, work zones, appliances, layout, storage must all be considered together, at once, in the preliminary design process. Jamie addresses each of these issues in depth, making sure the homeowner asks himself/herself the right questions to get to the essence of the appropriate design solutions for his/her/their individual lifestyle needs. Let me tell you - these are big issues as most people only do a kitchen once!
There is a wealth of design information covering styles and themes of kitchens as well as how individual materials nudge the design in one direction or another. In addition, the properties of many materials are discussed including durability, cleaning, preparation and specialized installation requirements. Jamie goes beyond noting the most common materials used in kitchens and notes materials that you may not have heard of.
Decorative details - a decorative "layer" that I have always said must be considered at the start of the design process, are discussed. Beautiful images are seen throughout the book providing information and inspiration. In fact, I would definitely say that this book has equal parts of each - information and beautiful visual inspiration.
There is so much more good content that I do not have room to mention in this post. Sinks, faucets, lighting, backsplashes, the role of technology in kitchens and more, more, more. Your money will be well spent with and is a smart initial investment toward your new kitchen project.