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  • Writer's pictureColin Stayton

Judging Design Submissions Brings Rewards

Updated: Jun 23, 2023

Peter Cardamone, founder and principal designer, spent two and a half days this June judging one of the industry’s top design competitions with five other kitchen and bath design professionals from around the country.

Held in Chicago, the 2021 Kitchen & Bath Design Awards draws hundreds of applicants nationally from firms large and small. Sponsored by Kitchen & Bath Design News, the event is now in its sixth year.

The judges first whittled down hundreds of entries to the 10 best in each of 11 categories. Pete and Sarah Kahn Turner, of Jennifer Gilmer Kitchen & Bath in Chevy Chase, Md., assessed kitchens in the $150,00-$225,000 range and master baths $50,000-$100,000. On the final day, the panel together weighed the 110 designs to identify the top three in each category for Gold, Silver and Bronze awards.

“It was eye-opening to see how much effort went into the submissions, with the majority providing impressive images and detail,” he recalls, “making our critiques much easier and the whole experience educational and inspiring.”

One feature that both he and Kahn Turner plan to borrow for future designs is back-to-back sinks on a large kitchen island as a fresh option for dual chefs.

“I’m always drawn to design projects that have strong symmetry. Islands aligned with ranges, sinks aligned with windows. My critical eye focuses more on space planning and function first and aesthetics second. That’s the building block to me—to see things in space—and, I believe, one of my strengths as a designer."

“I’d happily judge a competition again. It was a satisfying experience on many levels, not the least being an opportunity to give something back to an industry that’s done pretty well by me for many years.”

KBDN shares expanded coverage of this year’s Kitchen & Bath Design Awards online as well as in its print edition. For a list of the panel members plus terrific photos of the 33 winning projects and insights from the judges, visit

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