Author Archives: Jessica White

A Note from a Client

We received the nicest note from a client who’s kitchen was done almost a decade ago:

“I contacted Kitchen Encounters for the paint color of my cabinets as I wanted to “spiff up” my house and paint the cabinets professionally.  My cabinets were installed 8 years ago and the paint was “bubbling up and chipping”.  I had no expectations from Kitchen Encounters except for them to tell me the color of the paint.  Instead of just giving me the paint color, they came out and inspected the cabinets and decided there was a factory manufacturing problem with the painting.  They worked hard with the factory to recognize that the paint was defective from the manufacturer.  Ultimately, I was able to replace most of my  defective cabinet fronts with entirely new fronts.  This was at no expense to me except for the labor to reinstall the fronts!  Kitchen Encounters was tenacious with the manufacturer to hold true to their warranty.  I  am appreciative to Kitchen Encounters beyond words.  They are reliable, trustworthy, tenacious, and loyal.”

It’s important to us that our clients know that even after their kitchen is designed, and the cabinets installed, that we will be readily available to assist if any issue arises with the cabinets. If it’s not something that we can fix ourselves, we will help them find the right person for the job!

Client Testimonials

One of the most rewarding aspects of our work is when our clients are so gracious and appreciative of what we do, and the relationships we form with them throughout the process.

Check out our Houzz profile to read just a few of the lovely reviews we have received:

Houzz Reviews

And be sure to look through our project photo books while you’re at it!


Houzz review- Hewes



Severna Park Voice Home and Garden Guide

This month’s Severna Park Voice included the Spring Home and Garden Guide! One of our design team members wrote an article explaining the many possibilities when it comes to inside the cabinetry.. Our Marketing and Communications coordinator also had an article for the Annapolis Design District about using art in design. Check them out here:

Cover ArticleAd ArticleEnd Art in Design Article

Woodland Retreat

We tend to feature a lot of our favorite kitchen projects here, but we also work on many other projects and rooms for our clients! Designer, Tracy McGuinness, AKBD, had the pleasure of working with a lovely couple in 2015 on redesigning their Master Bath and Hall bath. These spaces were transformed from 80’s drab to modern day fab!


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Part of what made this project so special was the number of firms from the Annapolis Design District that were all involved in this transformation:

Lisa Publicover Interiors Designs

Riley Custom Homes and Renovations

In Home Stone



Visit the Bathroom section of our Portfolio to see more.

35 Years!

That’s right! This Spring of 2016, Kitchen Encounters will officially have been in business for 35 years!


Let’s flash back to 1977. After previous experience of driving interstate tractor trailers, framing houses, and customizing vans, owner Mark T. White, felt that doing something more hands-on would be a job he would enjoy. He started working for a company making custom countertops, and really liked what he was doing. He was proud of the final product and loved seeing how happy the homeowner’s were and how much they appreciated the beautiful craftsmanship. That company ended up going out of business about two and half years after starting there. However, that experience opened Mark’s eyes to some of the frustrations that homeowners were having with kitchen designers and installers, which led him to opening his own business.

Mark’s sister, Cindy (who is our Financial Manager) loaned him about $800 to buy the basic tools he would need to continue making custom countertops. He rented a friend’s basement and built an apartment in one corner, and used the rest of the space as a workshop. From there, he moved his workshop into a large garage off Hudson St. About a year later, he moved into a warehouse on Legion Ave in Annapolis, where he continued to make countertops. After some time, a cabinet dealer was looking for space to have a display in the Annapolis area, and so he offered the front of the warehouse, where the office space was located, to act as a showroom. It was then that Mark was truly inspired to become a kitchen designer.

In 1997, Mark bought a small 1950’s cottage, where Kitchen Encounters resides today, in the heart of the Annapolis Design District. The three bedroom home was transformed into a functional showroom, with our offices in the basement. The showroom maintains a home-like atmosphere, while housing about 10 display vignettes featuring different cabinet styles, features, and functions.

After years of focusing on different aspects, and offering the full package (design, construction, and installation), he realized that his strong points were in the cabinetry and design itself. Mark developed the Interactive Design Process to ensure that comfort, beauty and function merge successfully in a remodeling or new construction experience. This process has since been taught nationwide at industry events, NKBA Chapter meetings, and through developing a course at the local community college. By using numerous sketches to illustrate design possibilities, our clients are able to identify features that fit their lifestyle. The preferred design elements are then combined into the best plan for the project. As we enter our 35th year in business,  Kitchen Encounters has received about 50 different awards and recognitions, has been published in over 35 different publications, with over 100 appearances, featuring almost 80 different projects, plus about a dozen projects have been featured on HGTV.

Reaching our 35th year in business wouldn’t be possible without our friends, families, design team members, business associates, clients, and neighbors. We want to thank all of you for your continued support, and here’s to another 35 years!

More from the 2016 Design Competition

Here is the on-line version of the NKBA magazine with the winning projects and a brief description of each!

You can also view photos of all the winning projects on the NKBA’s Pinterest Board! Look for projects with Mark T. White’s name underneath for his award winning kitchens!

And here are some photos of Mark and Cindi at the awards gala in Las Vegas:

2016 PWP Studio Corporate Event Photographers

2016 PWP Studio Corporate Event Photographers

2016 PWP Studio Corporate Event Photographers

2016 PWP Studio Corporate Event Photographers

2016 PWP Studio Corporate Event Photographers

2016 PWP Studio Corporate Event Photographers

2016 PWP Studio Corporate Event Photographers

2016 PWP Studio Corporate Event Photographers

Congratulations, Mark!

Award Winning Designs

The Kitchen and Bath Industry Show was held last week in Las Vegas in conjunction with the International Builder Show. The NKBA (National Kitchen and Bath Association) holds a design competition every year for design firms nation wide, and the awards are presented at a gala to kick off the week of KBIS.

Kitchen Encounters owner, Mark T. White, CKD, CBD and his wife, Cindi, attended the gala and the show. Mark was the proud recipient of TWO awards from the competition! He placed 1st in the Large Kitchen category, and 3rd in the Medium Kitchen category.


Here are photos of the two winning projects in the recent issue of NKBA magazine:

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See more of our Award Winning Designs in the Portfolio section of our website!



Art and Design

We are so honored to have such a presence in this month’s issue of Annapolis Home Magazine!

Not only did a photo of one of our projects (by Cathy Terranova and Mark T. White, CKD, CBD) make the cover shot, but there’s a 10-page feature story on that project as well! Here are a couple of before shots of the project on the Eastern Shore:

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Check out the article to see the drastic, artful change!

Another one of our designers, Tracy McGuinness, AKBD was responsible for the kitchen re-design of Decolart, the Annapolis art and design showhouse that was open in December! The great part about the showhouse is that we had done the original kitchen design back in 2002 when the church was originally converted to condos. Here’s some before shots of the showhouse kitchen, but you’ll want to see the photos from all the other rooms!

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What an exciting way to start the new year!