(Photos courtesy Ashton Woods)

It won’t surprise anyone who looks at a lot of renovated homes and new construction — among the splurges DFW homebuyers are willing to make, the kitchen reigns supreme, a survey of homebuyers revealed.

Ashton Woods, one of the nation’s largest private homebuilders, commissioned a national survey of homebuyers, and while Dallas-Fort Worth buyers tended to fall in line with national trends in some places, they bucked the trends in others.

For instance, those surveyed indicated they would prioritize luxury features — like high-end appliances and pricier finishes — over other areas in the house.

“We like we like to entertain, we like to have people over, and the kitchen is the heart of the home,” said Nikki James, who is the studio manager for the Ashton Woods Dallas Studio. “And they’re putting money into that space with things like luxury appliances like Jenair, and putting in quartz countertops, and spending a little bit more money on your light fixtures in your kitchen, where you know it’s more eye-catching and appealing whenever guests are coming in your home.”



Someone said something bad about the Silos, y’all.

For this week’s social media-generated story, we asked our readers on Facebook about design trends they feel are O-V-E-R.

And boy, did ya’ll have some opinions. Some of you are OVER granite. Others feel TVs mounted over fireplaces are on their way out. Karen Eubank, our resident design maven and stager, says the vessel tub is floating on outta here.
Some have hate in their hearts for the Tuscan, the modern farmhouse, and the McMansion.

Some even dared to take the Fixer Upper name in vain, y’all.  I think you might go to design trend aitch-ee-double-hockey-sticks for that. Like, a cupcake, a bag of shiplap, and some barbecue come to take you to a very dark place.

So below, in the name of experimentation, we’re trying something new — the responses from our readers in a slideshow format. We’ve had some itchy fingers to try this for a while, and this seemed like a great discussion to use this style of presentation. (more…)

Let’s start with a Maestro Color from Allied Stone, shall we?

Calacatta Riviera.

It’s an awesome color featuring naturalistic veining that looks like the real deal of marble. But it performs like a champ! No sealing is required EVER!!!

Today everyone wants the marble look, but no one wants the hassle and maintenance. Natural marble is soft, prone to etching and staining in it’s natural state. Maestro Quartz, available at Allied Stone in Dallas, is a beautiful alternative.

“We sell it by the square foot, you don’t have to buy whole slab quantities,” says Matthew Collins, brand and marketing manager. “It’s perfect for design flexibility and price.”

Allied Stone is a leader in fabrication and installation of natural stone. The company specializes in unique and customized granite kitchen countertops and bathroom vanities for new homes and remodels, crafting designs from only the highest quality natural stone such as granite, marble, onyx, and soapstone.

Allied Stone is the only granite fabricator in DFW that actually owns and stocks as much inventory and range of selections as the local granite distributors. Allied’s selection of exotic stones is conducted completely in-house.

More than 45,000 pieces of beautiful, exceptional stone slabs are available in more than 500 colors.

Allied also has the largest number of CNC machines among local DFW fabricators, giving them the unique ability to assure high precision and a streamlined production produce. With four Texas locations and a store in Durant, Ok, only Allied can offer a stunning inventory of natural stone, serving its customers with elegance and efficiency.

Allied Stone has partnered with CandysDirt to bring you a beautiful Stone of the Week. For questions you may have about putting glorious stone in your home, 855-861-6388 or email here. 

2015 trends

Wallpapers, blue pops of color, and subtle midcentury modern accents are all on Zillow Digs’ trend forecast for 2015. Photo courtesy Zillow Digs/S + H Construction

Style makers, movers, and shakers, 2015 is going to be a beautiful year, one that is “modern, yet approachable.”

At least, it is according to Zillow Digs, which has announced the top five 2015 trends in their annual Home Trend Forecast, as well as which four fads from 2014 are on their way to the style graveyard.

The top 2015 trends will include cowhide accents in unexpected places, gold fixtures in brighter tones than the past, and wallpaper in all sorts of new styles, textures, and colors.

Style losers include chevron patterns, matchy-match furniture, and the super-saturated colors that have dominated interior palettes for the past few years.

“Home design will embark on a dramatic shift in 2015, moving far away from the bright jewel tones and overused chevron and ikat patterns that took 2014 by storm,” said Kerrie Kelly, Zillow Digs design expert. “Unexpected textures and an eclectic, modern vibe are about to find their way in 2015. Expect to see a more sophisticated look in 2015 that incorporates gold hardware, natural textures, and a subtle midcentury modern undertone.”

The forecast combines data from a survey of leading interior designers and an analysis of the most popular photos on Zillow Digs. Let’s take a look at  these burgeoning 2015 trends, and those on the way out. Click through to see the lists!