Why That Much Design Blog by Tom Segal & Barbara Ballinger

Home Theaters

An extra room in a single-family house, townhouse, or apartment is a great place to set up a home theater if you’re a movie buff who hates the hassle of going out or not having your favorite films at your disposal all the time. But furnishing and equipping it properly is essential since less light, good acoustics, and comfortable seating all make the steep costs a worthwhile investment. At the upper-most levels, it’s key also to hire a professional media guru, along with an architect or designer to achieve best results. Here are frequently asked questions with answers from home theater expert Rob Dzedzy of Media Rooms Inc. in West Chester, PA, David Wexler of The Little Guys in Mokena, IL, and interior designer Sharon McCormick of Sharon McCormick Design, LLC, in Durham, CT: Read more →

May 30 / 2014
Author Barbara Ballinger and Tom Segal
Category Uncategorized
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Furnishing a Room: What it Really Costs

Moving, redecorating, or remodeling? Fortunately, most of us don’t start with a blank slate. Usually, we own a few furnishings or have inherited some pieces to build from as a start. But there’s still a lot to purchase to make a room look inviting, functional, and give it cache. The costs quickly add up, even before you can finish asking: Why does it all cost so much? Read more →

January 10 / 2013
Author Barbara Ballinger and Tom Segal
Category Uncategorized
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Plumbing Fittings

Bathrooms, especially master bathrooms, continue to rank high among homeowners’ remodeling projects–and particularly now that house sales are picking up in many areas of the country. There’s a good explanation. Besides gathering as a family in bigger, multi-purpose, remodeled kitchens, many homeowners seek a private sanctuary where they can escape to pamper themselves without leaving home. Close the door, keep out the kids, be alone, turn up the volume on your ipod and take that incredibly long shower or soak in a deep tub with not a care in the world. Read more →

December 16 / 2012
Author Barbara Ballinger and Tom Segal
Category Uncategorized
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Custom Cabinets

Cabinets typically represent 50 percent to 60 percent of the cost of a kitchen remodeling. With a high-end overhaul averaging $113,000 nationally and even a mid-range kitchen redo pegged at $58,000, according to the latest 2012 “Cost vs. Value” report from Remodeling magazine, the choice of cabinets should be carefully considered.

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December 03 / 2012
Author Barbara Ballinger and Tom Segal
Category Uncategorized
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Bluestone Terraces

Nothing connotes a classic, elegant outdoor space more than bluestone paving, often referred to as fieldstone. Made from sandstone, it’s the crème de la crème of natural stone, quarried in this country most often along the East Coast in New York, Pennsylvania, Vermont, and Connecticut.

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November 15 / 2012
Author Barbara Ballinger and Tom Segal
Category Uncategorized
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Countertops

How did it happen? We’re not quite sure but before we knew it Corian and higher-end laminates were out and granite became the go-to choice for luxe, top-of-the-line kitchen countertops with its rich, dazzling colors and eye-popping speckles. It also appealed for its durability since it was heat resistant, nonporous and stood up well to busy prep work. Read more →

October 26 / 2012
Author Barbara Ballinger and Tom Segal
Category Uncategorized
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Sub-Zero Refrigerators

Remodel a kitchen, and one of the most important pieces of equipment to select is the refrigerator/freezer. At the top of many wish lists is a Sub-Zero, known for its superb quality, durability and sleek good looks, often with a stainless steel or glass front, or painted or natural wood panels that match a kitchen’s decor.

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October 16 / 2012
Author Barbara Ballinger and Tom Segal
Category Appliances
Comments 18 Comments

Why That Much?

Let Barbara and Tom Explain!

We all dream of buying the best—a Nespresso coffee maker that makes java as bold as that barista in Tuscany, or an elegantly simple yet chic, exquisitely made Patek Philippe watch that has never faded from style. But then, life gets in the way. The economy reminds us not to dream so extravagantly, especially when there are much more affordable, readily available, and functional objects at hand. Read more →

October 01 / 2012
Author Barbara Ballinger and Tom Segal
Category Uncategorized
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