Rick Gedney from Gedney Kitchens (aka Kitchens by Gedney) likes to point out that if you buy a car, you can always get another car in a couple of years. But once you build a kitchen, with appliances, cabinets, and the works, it’s a done deal. You shouldn’t have to think about that kitchen again for another 30 years.
“While you might get a red car that’s trendy, you are probably not going to get red cabinets,” says Rick. “You want something that has legs and can last.”
Rick loves to give a tour of their showroom on Bradley Road in Madison where it’s been since 1979.
“People like our small, well-appointed showroom,” says Rick. “They aren’t overwhelmed by it. When they go into those big warehouse stores, their eyes glaze over. Here everything is concise and well laid out and they can make decisions.”
At Gedney Kitchens, you will get the personal attention you would expect from a small, family-run business along with the professional skill of their dedicated design and installation team. They have created over 4000 kitchens along the Connecticut shoreline, throughout the Northeast and beyond.
Whether it’s textured finish Quartz countertops with chef size composite undermount sinks or Wood-Mode cabinetry, Gedney Kitchens makes sure to show off the latest trends but also sticks to the classics that people love.
“We are currently installing a steam oven and preparing for a built-in coffee maker in our showroom. We didn’t see those kinds of appliances until recently. Our showroom is constantly being updated because the industry is constantly changing,” says Rick.
Rick says a growing trend in kitchens are hybridized workstations that combine functions such as coffee, wine, and charge centers into one place to maximize space.
“You may use the coffee center in the morning,” says Rick. “Or the wine center is used in the evening, for instance. People use these centers at different times of the day or week.”
A second trend right now is more stylistic, and that is the new generation of flush appliances.
“The flush installation of appliances is something that is pretty hot right now,” says Rick. “Even the ovens are flush with the cabinetry. Think about an oven or a refrigerator, you see them sticking out, but now it’s a nice smooth marriage. Imagine traditional materials, yet clean and crisp, with things flush where it makes sense to be flush and things accentuated where it makes sense to be accentuated.”
Their company name may be Gedney Kitchens but Rick wants people to know that kitchens are not the only thing they do. They are also known for their great closet and bath projects and designs for other key rooms in the house.
“Right now, we are doing a large den with mahogany paneling and a hidden TV,’” says Rick. “We are really a functional millwork and casework design company, throughout the home, rather than only kitchens.”
Gedney Kitchens is a second-generation Connecticut company started by Rick’s dad, Dick Gedney, who attended the first ever kitchen design school hosted by General Electric back in the 1950s. The Gedney’s come from a family line of shipbuilders who built the first shipyard in the “New World” in 1637 in Salem, Massachusetts.
Rick says that Gedney Kitchens is a business that is very much built on “a team concept.” He points out that design, management, admin, installation and service all have an important role in making a project successful.
The team includes Rick’s brother Curt who has a background that includes a stint with DuPont Corian® and other companies on the industrial and commercial end of kitchens and he brings that perspective to the business.
Laurie Erickson is a design school graduate and is the “first nonfamily member and has been with us over 30 years”.
Ana Sirota has a BFA in Interior Design and is the youngest person on the team. “Ana is a younger person and follows the art world. She brings a fresh young creative perspective to what we do and is not afraid to be challenged. She started here as an intern.”
Pat Gerard as the Office Manager is the glue that holds the company together and has been with Gedney Kitchens for over twenty years.
If you take a tour of his showroom, ask Rick about his PV solar-generated electrical system, where he has put his environmental science background to work.
“We are off the grid,” says Rick. “We have a photovoltaic system here and we will soon use the sun to power up our own vehicles to service our clients efficiently. I try to think ahead!”