The Tomaiolo Realty Group | Shrewsbury Real Estate, Northborough Real Estate, Holden Real Estate


It has been written; the kitchen is the heart of the home. So, when walking through a model or open house, the kitchen is a significant appeal or detractor. Where the kitchen is relative to the rest of the living space is essential. The layout of the workflow can make or break the impression of the house as a whole. Any upgrades and extra convenience features can turn an ordinary kitchen into your culinary dream area. Other architectural choices can affect the ascetics of the property. 

Layout and Function

When looking at kitchen layouts, the choices are almost endless. How you use the kitchen will give you direction on what will work for you and your family. The number of people that will use the space at any one time can determine how much floor space in the kitchen you need. If you entertain often or tend to gather in the kitchen, an open concept may be up your alley. An island kitchen is another great idea for people who like to congregate and spend time in and around their kitchen. A raised bar on the island can help hide any messes while still enjoying the open island kitchen concept when entertaining.

Work Triangle

Placement of what chefs call the work triangle is an essential element in any kitchen layout. The triangle is made up of the placement of the refrigerator, sink, and oven/stove. In other words, gathering ingredients, prepping, and cooking. Having an optimize work triangle can increase your enjoyment in the kitchen. When touring open or model homes, walk the space as you would use it at home. You could visualize the steps you would take in that space to get your morning cup of coffee. Does the layout make sense concerning how you work in the kitchen?

Upgrades and Add-ons

Many remodeled and new construction homes boast kitchen upgrades that look impressive. A hot water dispenser alongside the sink is convenient, as is an ice cube and water dispenser built into the fridge. Look for those upgrades that lend themselves to helping you make better use of your time. Remember, the more gadgets there are, the more items to maintain. Go ahead and enjoy the undercabinet lighting, so you don’t stub your toes when grabbing that midnight snack. In addition to functional upgrades, some are just there for the overall esthetics; such as crown molding, Italian tile work, or pendant lighting over an island bar. Those can give an otherwise ordinary kitchen a “wow” factor that makes a real impression.

Contact your realtor for more information on locating your dream kitchen.


Here are five tips for when that redecorating urge strikes but you haven't got the budget or time to do a lot. You likely could do all of these ideas for less than $50 and still give your room a new look.

  1. Fresh Flowers: You don't need a fifty dollar bouquet to make a room pretty, but any place will get an immediate boost with a bit of living, breathing greenery. Consider a $20 tropical flower, large enough to fill an empty corner, and spend another twenty on a colorful bunch of fresh-cut flowers. This will give your room an instant punch.
  2. Bowl of fruit and table cloth: Don’t underestimate the zest and color that a large bowl of fresh fruit lends to your kitchen, dining room, and even the coffee table. You can also fill a pottery dish with a variety of fruits, or a tall glass vase with a single fruit (citrus such as lemons or limes) or even line up a row of green apples along the coffee or dining table for a contemporary feel. Select new table linen in the trendiest color of the season to give your room a real lift or invest in a crisp white or cream cloth for a classic look.
  3. Baskets: You don't have to a country girl or guy to appreciate the cozy look of baskets in the home. Even the modern room can benefit from a bit of wood or rattan. The primary purpose here, however, is to hide your clutter. You will feel refreshed if you add a few baskets and fill them with magazines, toys or hobby materials. It is an easy way to contain the everyday clutter that you can't stow away. Clearing up space is always a good look.
  4. Throw Pillows: You can find two throw pillows for less than $50 and even add a cozy blanket to your collection. This is an affordable and easy way to go if you are looking to make a statement. Consider the contrast of light pillows for a dark room, textures and solid colors to add color to a neutral place. And for this price, you can change it seasonally!
  5. New Paint: Admittedly, for the more ambitious, paint is a fantastic way to create a stunning look in little time. Try a creative look by painting a feature wall in a stunning but complementary color (that is the fireplace wall, that blank wall behind the couch and other spaces that can be useful). You can even tape off a small section (this is called color blocking) to focus attention on a collection of pictures, or behind a mirror, or around the fireplace.

Check your local craft store today for home décor accessories that will light up your living area.


One of the most difficult decisions to make when refinishing a room is how much of a current trend to inspire your choices. Jumping in with two feet can be fun and certainly create a wow factor. However, trends can also quickly become outdated and if you’ve invested a lot of time and money into a particular one you will also have to spend a lot of time and money to change it.

Luckily, this isn’t an all or nothing situation. So whether your current obsession is mid-century modern or shabby chic you can satisfy your style preference without making a top to bottom change in a few months or years.

To start, keep bigger items like the wall color, flooring, and furniture neutral in both style and color. What I mean by this is to choose furniture that is inspired by or similar, but simpler, to a more trendy piece. And neutral doesn’t have to mean beige. Blacks, grays, blues, browns, whites, and creams with just a hint of the desired hue are perfect multitaskers that transcend both trends and time.

For example, if you want pink for a blush-toned creme or for green a sage infused blue. If you’re craving color black and white create the perfect canvas for colorful accessories to really pop and make a statement. Navy and charcoal are neutral but underutilized colors that allow you to give a little push style boundaries.

Bring in those pops of color with accents. Wall art, decor, throw pillows, curtains and bedding are perfect ways to do just that. Incorporate your favorite new colors and patterns throughout the room for a consistent look and not as if you haphazardly placed pieces as an afterthought.

The best part of using these details to infuse your trend of choice is that they enable you to go as bold or subtle as you like. Curtains or a comforter in a bright color or a bold print capture the eye immediately. Throw pillows and wall art, on the other hand, make for a room filled with personality.

It’s always fun to incorporate trends when we are decorating. It gives the room your unique brand of personality and brings the space to life. Cleverly choosing your larger items to remain understated to allow your trendy pieces take the spotlight is the perfect way to join in while also staying flexible if you tire of it or want to change things up down the road.

You’ll also be making a more budget-friendly project by choosing neutral tones for your investment pieces. They will be able to carry over decades to come while transcending, for the most part, the many trends it is sure to outlive.     


Whether you are a recent transplant to the area or have been a New Englander all of your life it’s hard to resist the charm of the classic New England style. The crisp clean lines and simplicity make one feel instantly at home. Keep reading to discover how you can add a touch of New England charm to your home. Furniture. New England style still holds its roots from it's early settlers. Look for simple, rustic furniture. Ideally, it should be a handmade piece built for quality to last the tests of time. Speaking of time, no New England home is complete with at least one antique and preferably one handed down generation to generation. If you are not so fortunate to have an heirloom piece start hunting the antique fairs for one you love. Color. New England homes are deeply inspired by their natural surroundings. When choosing colors for your home think sky blues, sunny yellows, sea foam greens, sandy beige, pine greens and nautical navy. If you need some inspiration visit the cape or some nearby woods to gather your color inspiration. Visual Interest. New England style may be simple but it’s not devoid of visual interest. If you don’t have at least something covered in plaid you should consider a shopping trip in the near future. Whether it’s a blanket, kitchen curtains or even some wallpaper, having plaid is practically a must. Braided rugs are another New England staple and not always one limited to floor coverings. You can also find braided table runners, placemats, coasters, chair pads, and potholders. Decorating. Books, books, and more books. A large home library is not hard to find in New England homes. Collect interesting titles and visually appealing book spines for a collection that makes a statement. Nature landscapes, seashells, lobsters, ducks, and shells are all common themes found within this homey decor style. Woven baskets and rustic pottery are also New England staples to be placed on shelves or hung from hooks. Shelving and hooks will be your best friend as New England style maintains it’s clean simplicity by having a place for every item and keeping them off the floor. Features. A wood stove and/or fireplace are practically nonnegotiable. And while a stack of split wood nearby and fireplace tools are a practical necessity there also a form of decor. Invest in a visually appealing log rack and hearth toolset. White washed walls and wide wood plank floors, usually of pine, are another classic New England feature hearkening back to its first settler roots you will want to look for when home shopping or replicate in your redesign. If you’ve been lusting after New England style homes gracing the pages of your favorite interior decorating magazine it’s probably time to add some of that charm to your own home. Whether you just add a few touches by switching up your decorations or overhaul your house top to bottom you should have a better idea of how you too can have a cozy New England style home.