Town Topics — Princeton's Weekly Community Newspaper Since 1946.
Vol. LXV, No. 10
Wednesday, March 9, 2011
Coldwell Banker Princeton Office

Prudential Fox and Roach, Realtors

Gloria Nilson GMAC Real Estate

Henderson Sotheby's International Realty

N.T. Callaway Princeton Office

Stockton Real Estate, LLC

Weichert, Realtors

Advertise in Town Topics

Iris Interiors

Advertise in Town Topics

Weather Forecast

It’s New to Us by Jean Stratton

QUALITY AND EXPERTISE: “I enjoy the creative process; so much of the work is about that. It is important to make the process as rewarding as the final product, and I love watching my clients’ reaction when it all comes together.” Lisa Tobias, owner of Tobias Design, offers clients quality cabinetry and expert design.

Fine Custom Cabinetry and Innovative Design Are the Highlights of Tobias Design in Hopewell

Achieving the look you have always hoped for in the kitchen, bath, or other rooms in the house does not have to be an unrealized dream. A fresh approach to cabinetry can often make all the difference, and the choices available today are boundless in wood, style, finish, and design.

For the past eight years, many customers have turned to Tobias Design for high quality, artistic cabinetry and innovative design, with personalized service a priority from concept to completion.

“The credo by which I do business is that ultimately, I want every client I work with to walk away with ‘Yes, because’ not “Yes, but’. I want them to have nothing but a positive experience,” says Lisa Tobias, owner of Tobias Design at 48 West Broad Street in Hopewell.

“I always loved design and home furnishings,” adds Ms. Tobias, who formerly did actuarial work in New York. “When I came to Princeton, I had a brand new house, and I was very interested in the entire design process. I decided to go into business for myself, and I found that my corporate career could define the process. It helped bring structure to the business and manage expectations.”

High Quality

While focusing primarily on kitchens and bathrooms, Tobias Design also provides fine custom cabinetry and personalized design for home offices, entertainment centers, as well as built-in cabinets for the bedroom and wall units for the living room.

The company offers the high quality cabinetry of Bentwood Luxury Kitchens, Greenfield Cabinetry, and SieMatic from Germany. “All our cabinetry is top quality, and I am especially looking forward to introducing more people to the SieMatic line,” says Ms. Tobias. “It’s a refreshing modern approach, a line featuring a simpler, cleaner look.

“The basis of the design process is finding out what you like, what you don’t have but want, and what you have that you don’t like,” she explains. “If it’s the kitchen, I have to determine how you use it. Do you entertain? Formally or informally? How many people cook? How many are in the family? Kids, pets, etc.? This affects the layout and design. Some people want multiple refrigerators, two stoves; others store their take-out menus in the oven!

“Kitchen design is governed by logical layout. It should promote efficiency and function, coupled with design — the look. It should also reflect the personality of the owner. I’m a very function-driven person. However, function and form are not mutually exclusive. The overall look of the room and how it ties into everything in the house, the flow — all of this is important.”

Design Expertise

To whatever project she undertakes, Ms. Tobias brings her design expertise, focus, and attention to detail. And she likes a challenge. “I love to work on a project that has something unique to it. Someone may have a family heirloom and want to introduce it into the kitchen, for example. I also did a kosher kitchen in New Brunswick, which had specific requirements. I love it when something is uniquely challenging. I like things that are not predictable. I enjoy the unexpected.”

She also enjoys historic renovations, and has worked on a number of such projects. On one, she definitely encountered the unexpected. “We were renovating a 1700s house, and workers found a car from the 1920s buried deep in the backyard. In the trunk was a rug, filled with bones!”

Cabinet options — for whatever age and type of house — abound today, with limitless styles, woods and finishes available. Homeowners often select cherry, walnut, or alder wood, with traditional styles especially popular in the Princeton area.

“Some people like the look to be timeless,” points out Ms. Tobias, “but in the kitchen, for example, it will still be dated by the backsplashes and countertop materials. I continue to learn what the newest trends are, not only in cabinetry, but also countertops, lighting, appliances, flooring, knobs, pulls — the entire spectrum. They all portray a look, which tells a story.”

Seamless Flow

Tobias Design works with leading suppliers of flooring, countertops, lighting and appliances, providing a seamless flow from design to installation. “I know how to handle the entire process,” says Ms. Tobias. “What I can create and the process I establish distinguishes me. You are getting a Tobias design.”

Clients from many areas have appreciated her experience. They range from Princeton and Hopewell to Pennington and West Windsor to Bucks County and the Jersey shore. In addition, Tobias Design has had projects in Wisconsin, Palm Beach, Virginia, and Delaware, among other places. Ms. Tobias is able to accommodate a variety of budgets.

Customers also enjoy the handsome showroom in Hopewell. Filled with sample kitchens, varied cabinetry and countertops, it also provides sample design books, featuring Ms. Tobias’s work. In addition, it offers a real working kitchen for cooking and baking demos, and wine tastings, etc.

Ms. Tobias looks forward to continuing to help customers realize their dream kitchen, bath, or other favorite room in the house. Introducing them to the finest custom cabinetry and utilizing her design expertise to fit their unique needs and style of living is her pleasure.

Tobias Design is open Monday to Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m., evenings and weekends by appointments. (609) 921-9593. Website:

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