When Coordination Is the Key

Times Staff Writer

The trend toward customized styling in redesigned or brand-new kitchens is now being realized through the use of integrated cabinetry and appliances. To produce a flushed look, one major company’s answer is the Monogram. This exciting line of high-end, built-in appliances from General Electric offers an alternative to having too many different, uncoordinated pieces of kitchen equipment.

Consisting of 13 different models, the Monogram series includes upscale GE appliances that offer more upgraded key features than ordinary units. They are available in either a dramatic black glass finish or in a soft-white, which many designers have found to be the strongly preferred color in the current market.

Another advantage of the Monogram is that many custom cabinet makers have adapted the line so that they can provide consumers with customized facings for every appliance to match whatever cabinet finish is opted for.

One of the key products in the Monogram line is a counter-depth, 42-inch-wide, built-in, side-by-side refrigerator. Aside from providing ample storage space to accommodate party trays, this refrigerator can be aligned with standard base cabinets.


Also available is a self-cleaning, in-wall, double oven with an electronic timer. These ovens are spacious and equipped with an automatic rotisserie.

Monogram cooktops are geared towards easy-clean cooking and are available with an optional down-draft venting accessory kit. You can choose between a model with solid disk cast-iron heating elements or an induction model that uses a magnetic friction process to heat iron-rich pots and pans.

Two high-performance microwave ovens are also available: one is a built-in combinationconvection/microwave oven with broiling element; the other is a wall-mounted or countertop microwave with automatic programming and 10 power levels.

Highly rated in the line is GE’s electronic dishwasher, which provides readouts at each phase of operation. Its Potscrubber cycle handles baked or dried on foods and the machine provides delayed start programming. It also alerts the user if someone has forgotten to fill the detergent cup and signals in case of a clogged drain. Last but not least in the Monogram series is a built-in trash compactor.


Another company that caters to consumers desiring a built-in look in their kitchens is KitchenAid. Available in white, black or almond designs (provided with trim kits), KitchenAid appliances include a double thermal/convection oven, a trash compactor, a sleek glass cooktop with solid cast-iron elements, a self-cleaning double oven with thermal convection upper oven and a deluxe thermal lower oven, a microwave oven with solid state controls and, of course, one of KitchenAid’s highly rated appliances, its built-in dishwasher. Completing the line is an array of refrigerator models equipped with modern features. The newest model is the KitchenAid built-in refrigerator (model KSRF36BT), which will be available in late fall. Four years in the development, this 36-inch wide, 24-inch deep, side by side refrigerator/freezer with adjustable height is a true built-in that can be mounted flush to cabinets. The refrigerator features tempered glass shelves, roller-track guides that allow effortless movement of crispers, meat drawers, baskets and roll-out shelves. An ice and chilled water dispenser is located in the door.

The GE Monogram is available through custom kitchen design stores.

The KitchenAid appliances are available at Familian stores.