Sarabeth Cummins, a fourth year furnishing and interiors major, recently won second place in the National Kitchen and Bath Association (NKBA) Kitchen Student Design Competition.
Cummins also received a scholarship of $1,500 and a fully paid trip to The Kitchen and Bath Industry Show (KBIS) Jan. 8-11 in Orlando.
Cummins’ submission originated as a class project in which students were given a client profile and told to design a custom floorplan tailored to the client’s wishes.
“We got a sheet that showed their style and kind of what they were looking for,” Cummins said.
Cummins was assigned an elderly couple located in Chattanooga, Tenn.
“We had to think about what problems they might come across physically in the future, and so I kind of just thought about if I were elderly or if I were designing a kitchen for my grandparents, what would they need in their home?” she said.
“They were worried about having upper cabinets and being able to reach things, so I made sure to incorporate cabinets that were countertop height,” Cummins added. “The cabinets went all the way down to the countertops so that they would still have some cabinet storage without having to reach up very high, and I think that was an aspect that set my design apart from the other ones.”
Besides critically thinking about the layout for the couple, Cummins also had to consider the design.
“Since they’re in Chattanooga and it’s a very outdoorsy town, for the aesthetic part, I drew from surrounding areas and Chattanooga, and used natural colors,” Cummins said. “It was nice to have a client and have to get out of our comfort zone for someone since that’s actually real life and what we’re going to do when we get into our career, so it was definitely my favorite project.”
Cummins said she’s excited for KBIS and hopes to take advantage of networking opportunities.
“Being able to put I won second place in this national competition on a resume, I think is a great talking point and it stands out,” Cummins said.
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