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North Carolina Kitchen Transformed by AARP

AARP launched its “Recession Remodel” room makeover contest last year intending to show that even in a recession, bathrooms and kitchens can be updated not only to be more attractive but also to make the home more comfortable and efficient now and in the future. The final makeovers of the winning rooms -- a farm house kitchen outside Charlotte, NC and a Snohomish, WA bath employed universal design, a design approach that assures a room or home is easily used by anyone of any age or ability.

Judy Hammill had always planned to retire to the quiet farming community outside of Charlotte where she had been raised and her daughter Jamie Hammill and son-in-law Mike Brady now live. But the kitchen of the old family farmhouse needed a makeover before Judy could carry on comfortably there by herself. Jamie entered the AARP Room Makeover Contest on her mother's behalf, and they won the services of universal design experts and a CAPS builder, as well as all the appliances, fixtures and building products they would need to make the dream come true. AARP’s total makeover of the winner’s kitchen expanded and brightened the room, added an open floor plan, extensive cabinet and counter space, multi-level work and eating space, and easy to reach appliances. Now the beautiful new kitchen is as comfortable and efficient as it is pretty.

Meet the Hammill women, and see details of the kitchen's transformation in the video and slide show.

AARP renovated the winning kitchen and bath with generous volunteer help from local designers and contractors and the assistance of building and appliance suppliers and manufacturers and local chapters of The American Society of Interior Designers and the National Association of Homebuilders’ Remodelers Council in both locations.

Jennifer Thompson of Vestra Interior Design in Burlington was the North Carolina team lead with the help of designers of Amy Baucom and Calvin Hefner. J.W. Flair of Flair & Sons, Inc. was the general contractor. Cynthia Leibrock, a nationally known universal designer helped shape the overall project.

In addition to the design and construction teams, support for the Recession Remodel in North Carolina came from Apple Blossom Insulators, Artisan Shutter, Bosch, Harkey Tile and Stone LLC, KitchenAid, Kohler, Liberty Hardware, Running Creek Custom Cabinets, Stiebel Eltron, Tupperware Brands, and Web-Don.

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