News : Kitchen Design Company Ties Lakota Heritage to ‘Green’ Practices

Nov 20, 2012

From Portsmouth Patch

“Much of what we do is with the intent to limit, as much as possible, the negative impact we have on the earth,” says Nathan Johnson, co-owner of Portsmouth-based Visions Kitchens & Design. “We also think of community and families first.”

Launched in late 2010 by business partners Johnson and Ernest Proper, Visions Kitchens & Design is a kitchen design company specializing in cabinets, countertops, and closet systems. Its approach encompasses every step of the design process, assuring that a new kitchen, bath, library, fireplace or home office fits seamlessly within the overall feel of the room and home.

Johnson and Proper bring a unique perspective to their work. Both can trace their lineage back to Native American roots. Lakota, to be exact: Johnson is Hunka — or adopted — Lakota, while Proper is Lakota Oglala and Mi’kmaq. November being Native American Heritage Month, Johnson and Proper’s unique journey is one on which both are proud to reflect.

“According to the Lakota tradition, the Earth is our Mother, and we operate our business with that in mind, absolutely,” explains Johnson. “The Lakota always ask the question, How are we impacting the environment seven generations ahead?”

Because of the principals’ background, Visions emphasizes green initiatives and approaches, including partnering with sources that practice sustainable harvesting; making use of bamboo and other sustainable wood products; incorporating low or no VOC paints, stains and finishes; utilizing reclaimed or recycled cabinet and countertop materials; as well as specializing in design techniques that can help the owner receive points towards LEED certification.

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