kitchen design for entertaining

Your kitchen is the everyday heart of your home, but it’s also a focal point for those special occasions where you invite guests and do some entertaining. If your current space isn’t enough to wow friends and family, or it just doesn’t reflect your personality or the overall aesthetic you’re looking to create for your home, kitchen remodeling services are the solution.

Below are a few kitchen design tips that will make your home a better space for entertaining.

Wine Area

Wine drinkers will love having a customized space for various wine bottles, bottle openers and glasses. Create a unique wine bar to conveniently store your favorites and display them to guests. Add in a mix of wine glasses and diffusers to have an area where everyone can congregate and enjoy a fresh bottle of wine. This area can include a wine fridge if you like or you can place fruit and cheeses inside to pair well with whatever wine you are tasting that evening.

Coffee Lovers

If you are more of a coffee drinker, why not create a coffee bar. Have an inlet in your kitchen created for all things coffee. This can include your coffee pot or Keurig, as well as coffee press, mugs, flavorings, etc. You will be able to invite friends over for a hot cup while you talk about your day, enjoying your time together.

Grill Space

Home owners who love to entertain outside with barbeque parties will love to create a grill space in the home. If you have a patio space, simply add in French doors, if you don’t have them already. This will give you easy access to the outdoors and bring the party from the kitchen to the patio space. On nice days, you can leave the doors open so guests can congregate outside or in. Place a cabinet near the French doors to house the grilling utensils and items needed to get the party started!

Mood Lighting

To set the mood of the party, consider adding in dimmers to the kitchen area. Whether you are having a romantic dinner with your spouse or enjoying a little music and wine with friends, you want to be able to control the mood of the space. Lower the lighting for a more intimate feel or brighten the space when you need to have full lighting for cooking. Dimmers can easily be installed to change the feel of the space.

Customization of the kitchen space is easy, especially if you work with the premier kitchen remodeling contractor in Northern Virginia.

Plan Your Kitchen Design for Entertaining

Contact Collins Tile and Stone online or call us at 703-907-9655 today to discuss a kitchen remodeling plan that will make your home the ideal spot for special occasions and get-togethers!


Collins Tile and Stone recently performed a bathroom remodel in South Riding, VA. View photos and information about the remodel below. For those interested in bathroom remodeling in Northern VA, contact us today at (703) 907-9655.

Bathroom Remodel South Riding Bathroom Remodeling Project in South Riding VA
Shower and Tub Remodel Bathroom Remodel in South Riding Virginia
Countertop Shower Remodeling Photo
Tub Remodel South Riding Tub Remodel
Bathroom Counter Top Remodel

Project Details:

  • Installed tile per the selections and sketch from Conestoga Tile.
  • Bathroom Floor: 18” x 18″ Venatino Honed – Marmol
  • Shower: 12” x 24” Venatino Polished – Marmol on the shower walls.
  • Shower Floor: 2” x 2” Mosaic Venatino Honed-Marmol.
  • Shower Curb: Installed a 6″, double beveled white carrara marble threshold
  • Bathroom entrance: Installed a 4” x 36″ white carrara marble threshold
  • Surrounding the shower and tub: 3 rows of Avalon and a Pencil trim of Avalon
  • All tile is back-buttered, an industry best practice, and a technique used on every installation we perform.  Back buttering ensures we meet industry standards for proper mortar coverage.  All tile is set using Laticrete 272. This is a high performance setting material that features over 250 psi of shear bond strength.
  • Grouting and caulking grout using Bright White- Permacolor Grout from Laticrete. All grout is sealed using Aquamix Sealers Choice Gold.
  • Caulking/Movement joints. All movement joints within the shower are accomplished using Latasil silicone caulk in Bright White from Laticrete.
  • Installed new, customer provided cabinetry, including installation of all cabinet hardware.
  • Installed a frameless shower enclosure. Fabricate customer provided mirror molding. Build two 28” x 40” mirrors, on-site.

Ask about a free in-home consultation!
Call (703) 907-9655

Collins Tile and Stone recently performed a beautiful modern bathroom remodeling project in Arlington, Virginia. View photos and information about the remodel below. For those interested in bathroom remodeling in Northern VA, contact us today at (703) 907-9655.

Tile Install in Northern VA Tile Install in Northern Virginia
Tiling Northern VA Bathroom Tiling
Tiling Project in Bathroom Northern Virginia Tiling


Project Details:

  • Tile distributed by Mosaic Tile
  • Bathroom Floor: Cosmos Tile Glow 12″x 24″ rectified porcelain tile placed on a diagonal 33% offset pattern. Cosmos Tile Glow 12″x 24″ tile cut-down for base around the perimeter of the bathroom floor and trimmed on top with Schluter Quadec Polished Chrome.
  • Shower: Cocoa Adore Ceramic 12″x 22″ tile placed on a horizontal straight pattern on shower walls. Cocoa Adore Ceramic 12″x 22″ on back and sides of niches, and trimmed with Schluter Quadec Polished Chrome. Cosmos Tile Glow 1/2″x 1/2″ Mosaic porcelain tile placed on a straight pattern on the shower floor. Cosmos Tile Glow 12″x 24″ tile cut-down for base the front and back of the shower curb.
  • VanityFocal Wall: Cosmos Adore Ceramic 12″x22″ tile placed on a horizontal straight pattern from floor to ceiling surrounding the vanity with Schluter Quadec Polished Chrome edging.  The tilecontinues throughout the shower walls.
  • Cambria thresholds: Installed a Cambria Lancaster threshold at the bathroom entrance and repeated at the shower curb.
  • In compliance with industry best practice, all tile is back-buttered, a technique used on every installation we perform.  Back buttering ensures we meet industry standards for proper mortar coverage.  All tile is set using Laticrete 4XLT whichis a high performance setting material that features over 600 psi of shear bond strength.
  • Cambria Lancaster Quartz fabricated and installed at thevanity countertop, threshold at shower curb and again at the bathroom entrance.

Ask about a free in-home consultation!
Call (703) 907-9655

How to Budget for Kitchen Remodeling in Northern VirginiaThere are a few steps to complete before breaking ground on a kitchen remodeling project — planning the design and layout, selecting products, choosing materials… and what else? Before starting with anything else you should set your budget.

Accurate financial planning can make all the difference in the final results of your project and your stress levels throughout the process. To help you along with setting the ideal budget, keep some of the following tips in mind:

Start with a Max Spending Limit

Carefully consider your overall financial situation before you decide on a budget for kitchen remodeling in Virginia. You should start with a clear accounting of your savings and expenses. Alternatively, if you took out an equity loan to cover your renovation, you could consider the loan amount as the max spending limit of the project. Either way, once you have an idea of the total money available to you, then you will be able to plan with a definite upper limit in mind. That max amount shouldn’t necessarily be your actual budget, but it’s a good starting place.

Include an Extra 20 Percent

It’s always a good idea to plan for the unexpected. While surprise budget-busting events like broken pipes are very uncommon, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t prepare for them. Todd Cella, a highly experienced contractor dealing in kitchen remodeling in Utah, recommends that homeowners make unexpected emergency expenses account for up to 20 percent of their initial renovation budget. Doing so will ensure that you don’t end up breaking the bank if an obstacles comes up along the way.

Know Individual Costs

How to Budget for a Kitchen RemodelIf you will be undertaking a full kitchen renovation, you should break your overall budget down into categories. Estimating individual expenses for appliances, cabinets, fixtures, windows and special features will ensure that you have properly allocated your budget across all of your needs. Edina Painting, a Minneapolis house painter,  says that home remodelers often forget to account for potential painting costs during the budgeting process. According to Marc Holt, a representative of Minneapolis carpeting experts Galaxie Floor Stores, “Without looking at expenses by category, it can be easy to eat up too much of a budget on cabinets alone and have none left over for important finishing details like flooring, wallpaper, and paint.”

Set Priorities

As you evaluate the expenses from each individual category of your renovation, you should also form a list of priorities. If a special feature like an island is an absolute must for you, then it should go to the top of the list. Writing your priorities out will help you make decisions in the event that changes or compromises need to be made later on. We recently spoke with a Minneapolis luxury home builder who verified that setting priorities is an essential preliminary step on every home construction project they undertake.

Need Help Budgeting for Kitchen Remodeling in Northern Virginia?

By following the tips above, you should be able to get a good start on a budget for your kitchen renovation. For more guidelines to follow on estimating and planning a home remodeling project, check out this blog from an expert on basement finishing in Parker CO.

For help with budgeting and the rest of the design and planning process, contact Collins Tile and Stone today to schedule a free in-home consultation! We’re here to help you create your dream kitchen!

Ask about a free in-home consultation!
Call (703) 907-9655



April 2015, Collins Tile and Stone received top honors, winning the NTCA Five-Star Grand Prize for Residential Tile Installation at the 26th annual international trade show “Coverings” in Orlando, Florida. Collins Tile and Stone exemplifies superior craftsmanship and technical expertise through the installation of a full-scale remodel featuring a steam shower using top-quality materials selected to best perform under challenging conditions in a Northern Virginia master bathroom renovation.

Based on a custom design, the primary features of the new bathroom were the large steam shower housed within a beautiful glass enclosure juxtaposed against a Japanese air soaking tub. This remodeling project required careful design and planning due to the innate challenges of constructing a steam shower in comparison to a normal shower. This required several stages of construction to properly build the steam shower since steam has a greater propensity for invasiveness than water. It was crucial to follow TCNA methods to ensure the best quality installation and performance of the steam shower to withstand use for years to come.


The design consisted of an exquisite combination of tiles creating both texture and modern appeal. It was imperative to ensure that the tile selected was able to resist the damaging effects resulting from the amount of water and vapor it is subjected to within the steam shower environment. With these conditions in mind, the homeowner worked with our team to thoughtfully select the proper tile containing properties conducive for the steam shower.

The tiles chosen for the remodel were distributed by Architectural Ceramics and comprised of 12” x 24” glazed, porcelain tile from the Flashback Series by Eleganza, for the bathroom floor and soaking tub facing. The shower walls, shower bench facing, and soaking tub walls is comprised of 12” x 24” and 3” x 24” (cut on-site from 12” x 24” field tile) natural porcelain tile from the On Square Series by Emil Ceramica. The decorative mural inset is comprised of a luminous hand-made, fused glass mosaic in a matte finish from the Tozen Series by Lunada Bay Tile Collection. The mural border repeats the glazed, porcelain tile from the Flashback Series and was also cut on-site from 12” x 24” tile to 3” x 24” pieces. In addition, the shower floor was comprised of Flash Back .5” x .5” mosaic tile. All of the tiles were installed with precision using standard ceramic tile installation methods and materials, as recommended by the TCNA.

“Collins Tile and Stone is the first Five Star Contractor to ever win back to back Grand Prize Recognition in our prestigious awards program. This particular project was impressive in that it professionally portrayed an extreme makeover from an outdated bathroom to an inspirational and functional new design,” shared Bart Bettiga, NTCA Executive Director. “Collins Tile and Stone continues to support our industry in many ways, and their commitment to installation excellence and customer satisfaction gives strong support to the NTCA Five Star Contractor Program.”


(L to R) Bart Bettiga (NTCA Executive Director), Christin Lecker (Collins Tile and Stone, Dir. of Marketing), Buck Collins (Collins Tile and Stone, President), Joe Tarver (NTCA Executive Director Emeritus), Jim Olson (NTCA Asst. Exec. Director)

“It is our privilege to be honored with this distinction for technical installation and superior craftsmanship including recognition of the intricate tile design and layout of this project,” expressed Buck Collins, Founder and President of Collins Tile and Stone. “The integrity of this stunning master bathroom remodel was achieved by the collaborative efforts of our team, our client, our vendors and distributors, and manufacturers. It is with sincere appreciation that we accept this special acknowledgement by the NTCA.”

Collins Tile and Stone is among an elite group of 42 NTCA Five-Star Contractors representing the best installers in the industry who must meet a number of criteria involving certifications and continuing education; active safety programs; client, supplier and peer recommendations; and active involvement in the industry through the NTCA.

Organized and chartered in 1947, the National Tile Contractors Association (NTCA) is a non-profit trade association serving every segment of the tile and stone industry, and is recognized as the largest and most respected tile contractors association in the world. Actively engaged in the development of industry standards, installer education, and member service, the NTCA is dedicated to the betterment of the ceramic tile and allied industries.

The NTCA Five-Star Award was presented at Coverings celebrating its 26th Anniversary as the largest and most important ceramic tile and natural stone trade fair and expo in the United States. The event features exhibitors from more than 35 countries and is the stage for introducing some of the most innovative tile and stone products in the world.

Collins Tile and Stone has earned the service industry’s coveted Angie’s List Super Service Award, reflecting an exemplary year of service provided to members of the local services marketplace and consumer review site in 2014.

Founder and President of Collins Tile and Stone, Buck Collins, shares, “It is with utmost gratitude to our clients and our hardworking team that we receive this distinguished recognition a fifth year in a row. This achievement is made possible by the commitment of our team to deliver the highest quality craftsmanship and customer service on each and every remodeling project. We commit ourselves each year to uphold this standard and we hope our customers have come to equate Collins Tile and Stone with the best in the industry. We value our clients for entrusting us with their tile and remodeling needs.”

“Only about 5 percent of the Ceramic Tile companies in Northern Virginia have performed so consistently well enough to earn our Super Service Award,” said Angie’s List Founder Angie Hicks. “It’s a really high standard.”

Angie’s List Super Service Award 2014 winners have met strict eligibility requirements, which include an “A” rating in overall grade, recent grade, and review period grade; the company must be in good standing with Angie’s List, pass a background check and abide by Angie’s List operational guidelines.

Service company ratings are updated daily on Angie’s List. Companies are graded on an A through F scale in areas ranging from price to professionalism to punctuality.

gold pin

We wish you and your family all the best for 2015! Many thanks for making this last year a great success and we welcome the opportunity to meet your remodeling needs this upcoming year! Wishing you a safe and memorable New Year!

With much appreciation & best wishes from the entire team at Collins Tile and Stone

We want to share this great article we found in House Beautiful explaining some of the ways homeowners are investing in their homes…through kitchen and bathroom remodels. Homeowners are creating their very own sanctuary at home and are willing to invest to make it more appealing and luxurious. Many of the trends cited in the article can be found in projects we’ve had the pleasure to build so we couldn’t agree more with these design tips. You may be contemplating your very own remodel and hedging on a detail or two or three….we hope you find this article to be a good compass on remodeling trends in 2015 and you take away an idea or two for your own kitchen or bath. Please visit our Photo Gallery to find some of these trends and to dream big.

Beautiful claw footed, slipper tub by Victoria & Albert


Popular Trends in Tile Selections for the Home

This is a great article identifying current tile trends. Read more to learn about wood-like tiles, popular hexagon patterns, and modern mosaics and how they are being applied in today’s remodels.

Tell us which of these trends peak your interest. We’d love to hear about your unique tile application in your kitchen or bathroom.