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Category: Blog

10 Bathroom Updates to budget for 2017

Bathrooms are one of the most used rooms of the home and significantly influence the value of residential properties. Many homeowners want to create a contemporary setting with updated features and decor that is used. For those who are planning on redesigning their bathroom, there are a few updates to budget for in 2017.

1. Dark Green Shades
More homeowners are incorporating dark green shades into their bathrooms, which are replacing blue shades that have commonly been used in past years. The green shades can be paired with beige or brown colors and will allow the room to feel warm and inviting.

2. Kit-Kat Tiles
Kit-kat tiles are replacing subway tiles in 2017 and are longer in their shape and size. The feature allows the bathroom to appear modern and sleek. They can be placed vertically or horizontally to make a statement and stand out in the shower or when used on the backsplash.

3. Terracotta
Terracotta tiles incorporate extra warmth into the room and include a natural matte finish that allows them to be used on walls. The tiles will replace cool and white features to create a cozy setting that is more welcoming.

4. Extra Storage Options
The functionality of the bathroom is crucial to creating a modern space that is updated. Add extra storage options that make everything within reach and keep clutter off of the countertops with built-in shelves and pull-out drawers that are used.

5. Metallics
Metallic designs continue to remain popular in 2017 and add a bit of style in the bathroom to allow the space to flow well with the rest of the home. Consider installing brass faucets or gold fixtures to add a high-end element that makes the room appear luxe.

6. Industrial Details
One of the most modern elements of the new year are industrial details with concrete floors or walls that can be used. The gritty design of the material is available in tiles to ensure that it transforms the setting and hides scuffs or marks that develop.

7. Custom Bathroom Tiles
More homeowners want to have a bathroom in their home that is unique with its design, which makes custom bathroom tiles in demand to create a customized environment that is specific to your home’s style. Artisanal tiles will create a high level of visual appeal and can be paired with a featured stone.

8. Wood
Timber is a common material that will be incorporated into bathrooms in the coming year to incorporate a bit of warmth into the space, which can be used in unique ways. Consider adding it to the sink or on the walls to impress your guests.

9. Large Tiles
Oversized tiles are an up and coming trend that reduce the amount of grout lines that are present and enhance the space of the bathroom.

10. Pink Elements
Touches of pink are unexpected and break a few rules when it comes to interior design for those who want to have a bit of fun. Add hot pink towels in a dark room or various shades of blush with the art that is on display.

10 Kitchen Updates to Budget for 2017

December is the ideal time of year to start putting together a list of projects that need to be completed around the house next year. This includes working up a realistic budget. It takes a little research, but it can be fun.

It seems that our kitchens often make the top of the list for updating. Let’s explore a few of the things you can do to freshen up your kitchen in 2017.

Reface your Cabinets
Refacing your cabinets is one of the most dramatic things you can do to update your kitchen. It can be as simple as repainting with a new color or staining them. Or, you could completely change out the doors and drawer fronts to give a more contemporary or a more classic look. Inserting glass in doors can lighten up the room.

Switch out Hardware
An easy kitchen upgrade is changing out your door and drawer hardware. The available options are endless, and many are quite affordable. Make a bold statement with some of the new designer series of hardware. Kitchen and bath showrooms are good places to get some ideas.

New Countertops
If your countertops are delaminating or are stained, you might want to consider changing the material out. Granite is still the number one kitchen counter material. It is certainly durable, though not without its drawbacks. You might want to look into countertops that are made from a blend of quartz and other raw materials. These are hard, non-porous, stain resistant, impact resistant, and easy to clean. They also come in a variety of colors. Think about changing the color scheme.

Refurbish Existing Countertops
Stone countertops can benefit from resealing. White water spots can be removed with a paste of baking soda and water. After the stone has been cleaned and allowed to dry, apply a fresh coat of sealer to give new life to the stone.

Lightly sand down your wood countertops and reseal them to protect them.

Replace or Repair your Backsplash
Dress up your kitchen by changing out the backsplash. Bling it out with tinted glass or metallic tiles. Perhaps add a blackboard backsplash in a particular area that would be fun for the whole family.

If you want to keep your ceramic tile backsplash, consider having it re-grouted and cleaned to freshen up the kitchen.

Opt for Stainless Steel Appliances
Do you have white or black appliances? Stainless steel is so popular now that just about every appliance company offers a stainless steel finish option. The prices are more competitive now. Stainless steel appliances will brighten up your kitchen instantly.

Replace your Faucet
Kitchen faucets don’t last forever. They do need to be replaced or repaired at some point. Faucets are becoming smarter and have more functionality. There are hands-free faucets, and faucets with extensions that make filling pots easier. Modernize your sink with a new faucet.

Reconfigure Cabinet Interiors
Storage needs are always changing. You may find that you need taller shelf space to store a stand mixer or a blender. You may also want to be able to reach things more easily. There are companies that specialize in remodeling cabinet and closet interiors to better meet your storage needs. They can install pull-out shelves to help you find what you are looking for without having to bend down and empty out the cabinet.

Upgrade your Lighting
With the recent switch from standard incandescent light bulbs to the more efficient LED and CF bulbs, now is the time to upgrade your light fixtures. Visit a show room and see how well a kitchen can be lit with newer and more efficient fixtures.

Add Trim and Molding
If your door and window trim is pretty standard builder’s quality, consider changing it out to something with more definition to give the room a more finished appearance. Adding crown molding above cabinets can bring the whole room together by framing everything like you would a piece of art.

Start planning your 2017 updates now and have fun with it! It often helps to have a vision board of things you really like. Make use of magazines and product brochures to collect your ideas.


Tasteful Decorating for the Holidays for your Bathroom and Kitchen

Kitchens and bathrooms are two rooms that are often overlooked when it comes to decorating for the holidays. That doesn’t mean that they should be neglected. Your kitchen and bathroom are two places where your holiday guests will eventually end up, so if you enjoy decorating for the holidays, here are some tasteful decorating tips for those rooms. 

Unused Space
You can utilize standard holiday décor in your kitchen and bath that you would normally use in your family room and entryway. A large, simple, clear glass jar or vase filled with holiday ornaments, pine cones, and lights will make a big impact in a corner that is rarely used. 

Lighting Considerations
If you use holiday lighting, keep it away from sinks and other sources of water for safety reasons. If in doubt, battery powered LED lights work awesome and last a long time using standard batteries. If you go with white LED lights, buy the “warm white” ones or you will end up with a blue-white hue that is cold and uninviting.

Use Temporary Hanging Accessories
Take advantage of removable hooks and suction cups that allow you to hang decorations on walls, windows, and mirrors. Use one on any surface to hang a wreath or other wall décor. Temporary hooks and hangers are secure and won’t damage your walls or other surfaces. 

Use Vertical Space
If you are low on counter space, utilize the vertical space to make the most of your holiday displays. Platters, cake stands, and candle holders can be stacked to create tiered a holiday display. Secure any stacked items and keep them far enough away from the edge of the surface where little hands can find them. These tiered surfaces also allow you to use your deserts, like cookies and cupcakes, as décor. Just decorate them with colored sprinkles or icing that coordinates with your décor.

Look Up
Space above eye level is easy to forget, but is a great place to decorate. The top of your kitchen cabinets, over windows, and chandeliers can be great places to decorate. Hang ornaments or pine cones from a chandelier with fishing line, drape garland around the top of kitchen cabinets, and hang a lighted garland around the top of the bathroom mirror.

If you have children, or child visitors, there are many child-friendly décor items for the kitchen and bath. For a children’s bathroom, consider toilet seat covers adorned with holiday characters, coordinating shower curtains, and hand towels. These safe items will delight children and don’t create a hazard for small children.

You can use similar ideas in the kitchen with children in mind by decorating with character-themed kitchen towels, window curtains, table cloths, and plush character decorations. Use rubber underneath table cloths to prevent children from pulling them off the table and spilling food and drink.

Decor Makes a Home Inviting
Kitchens and bathrooms should not be forgotten during the holiday season. Your home will look and feel more inviting and warm, creating an atmosphere that is comfortable and relaxing. Try to think outside the box and keep children and safety in mind when decorating in these rooms.

Deep-Clean Your Bathroom – Six Steps to Cleanliness

Bathrooms aren’t usually the most sanitary rooms in a home. The bathroom is a haven for germs and bacteria, and not just because it’s a room where the toilet is located. Bathrooms are often damp, and dampness is where bugs, bacteria, and sometimes fungi get comfortable enough to make a home in these spaces. Homeowners can prevent bathrooms from being any dirtier than necessary by deep cleaning on occasion. In six simple steps, homeowners can feel much more comfortable with the sanitary state of even the dirtiest bathroom.

Clean the Shower Head
It’s one place homeowners forget to clean regularly. The best way to ensure the shower head in any bathroom is clean is to fill a plastic bag with vinegar. Place the bag over the head of the shower, and use a tie to keep it in place. Overnight is the ideal time to allow the head to soak for ample cleanliness before allowing it to rinse itself with running water.

Clean the Shower Curtains
Many people simply throw curtain liners away and replace them. It’s a nice concept, but what about that shower curtain? It might not be the thing that gets wet and covered in mildew, but it does require cleaning. Simply place it, along with the curtain liner, in the washing machine for one cycle with two to three old towels. The towels are to scrub the curtains as they wash. Hang the curtain back up to dry. Now it’s free of bacteria, mildew, and shower filth.

Clean the Faucets
So many people forget the clean the faucet. It’s best to do this daily with disinfecting wipes easily throw away after each use. This prevents bacteria from forming on the faucet in addition to any germs spread by hands turning water on and off between washings.

Clean the Sink Drain
Studies show this is one of the dirtiest places in the house, and it needs a good cleaning. Pour white vinegar down the drain. Wait a few moments before flushing it out with hot water. This kills bacteria living in there. Since many people wash their hands here after using the bathroom, spending time outdoors, and doing a number of other things, it’s filled with a variety of bacteria.

Clean the Grout
Some people ignore this step, but it’s crucial homeowners understand why this is dangerous. Grout doesn’t get a good deep clean with a mop. It’s porous. Homeowners need to use straight bleach every few months to clean this. The bleach works as a killing agent to annihilate any bacteria growing in the damp porous grout. It’s imperative homeowners keep the windows open as well as the fan on. It’s also imperative to rinse the grout once it’s clean.

Clean the Toilet Brush
There’s no real trick to cleaning a toilet. It needs to be scrubbed with cleaner, possibly with a damp pumice stone to fight any stubborn stains. What’s important to remember is the toilet brush. Most people forget that it’s covered in the grime, filth, bacteria, and feces it cleaned off the toilet moments before. Homeowners put it back in its carrier without a second thought. It should be replaced every few months, but it needs a good cleaning after each use. Put the brush between the toilet bowl and seat, close the seat, and douse the brush with bleach, wait, and then pour water on it before storing it.

Deep cleaning the bathroom is a dirty job, but someone needs to do it. The ideal time to deep clean is every other month or so to prevent bacteria from taking over. It’s a dirty room, but that doesn’t mean it needs to stay that way.

Smart Tips for Making Your Small Kitchen Functional

Kitchens are the hub of every home, and small kitchens seem to pose more problems than solutions. Just because a kitchen is small in space doesn’t mean it’s small in style or functionality. When a homeowner learns the proper way to maximize space, small kitchens become more functional, and the size no longer matters as much. Even when there’s little storage space and/or counter space, small kitchens don’t have to frustrate homeowners.

Add Floating Shelves
It’s more cost-effective to add floating shelves to empty spaces than actual cabinets, and many homeowners appreciate this chic look. Not only is it sophisticated, it’s functional. It allows homeowners more space to store aesthetically pleasing dishes and glassware, and it doesn’t cost a fortune.

Convert Baseboards
Most homes feature several inches of space beneath cabinets with nothing but a baseboard covering them. One idea to maximize space and functionality in a small kitchen is for homeowners to turn those empty spaces into drawers. It’s a DIY project for some, but it might require the help of a handyman for others. Either way, the space can be used for baking pans, pizza pans, or seasonal dishes that only make an appearance a few months out of the year.

Customized Cabinets
Every house has a few cabinets that aren’t used often. They’re too big for anything homeowners need to store. They don’t offer shelving for smaller items. They’re used up by only a few small kitchen items. It happens all the time, but many homeowners choose to fix this problem by installing custom cabinets. Every homeowner has a chance to create a cabinet system that works based on personal preference. Whether it’s a small cabinet designed specifically for spices or a big corner cabinet with a lazy Susan to maximize every corner, custom cabinet choices are endless.

Rolling Islands
Small kitchens typically don’t feature islands. They’re too big, and the space is too small. If a homeowner has a place to store a rolling island, however, it’s the perfect addition to any small space. Not only does it have storage capabilities, it also allows homeowners to bring it out when additional counter space is needed. When it’s no longer needed, the island is easily rolled back into a pantry or storage closet.

Maximize Odd Spaces
Some homes feature odd layouts where there’s a little extra room for additional items in between things like the fridge and the wall. A custom rolling pantry that pulls out is perfect for a space like this. It allows homeowners to pull things out as they are needed, as well as ensure they can store things without making the kitchen look more cluttered.

Small spaces have the potential to become big on space and style, but homeowners can’t always see that without a little help from the professionals. Sometimes it takes touring a kitchen showroom to see how upscale custom items and designs enhance spaces that seem hopeless to homeowners. Size matters, but not nearly as much as homeowners imagine when it comes to the kitchen.

How to Make Your Bathroom a Spa Oasis

The bathroom is one of the most private and used rooms in your home.  We think everyone’s bathroom should be a place to unwind, refresh and RELAX. Whether you are a bath soaker or shower steamer, everyone deserves a spa-like experience in their bathroom. The good news is you don’t have to undergo a huge renovation to get a more tranquil “feel” in your bathroom.

Below are some tips and tricks to transform your bathroom into a spa oasis without spending a fortune or going through a full renovation.

Color Matters
Trading bright and bold colors for blue/green/gray hues is a simple update that creates a more relaxing and low stress environment in your bathroom. It is a scientific fact that cool colors are more calming to our eyes and brains. You can easily apply this concept to paint and towel color choices, but you should also keep color in mind when deciding on flooring and tile in your bathroom.

Add Décor
You can spruce up your bathroom with plants; vases and greenery can really improve the look of your bathroom. Adding storage with a linen cabinet is a great way to keep your bathroom clean and organized. You can also add extra seating in your bathroom or create the perfect makeup counter for yourself, fully equipped with a beautiful mirror, great vanity/countertop and timeless stool/chair. The possibilities are endless when adding décor, storage and organization and they all scream “high end” as if you were at the spa.

Switch your Showerhead
Whether you like a lot of pressure or you enjoy a smooth trickle, there are a variety of options when looking to update your shower. Swapping out your old showerhead for a modernized showerhead is a simple way to bring the spa to your bathroom every morning. The possibilities are endless when looking for a new showerhead. You can get an oversized, a handheld, or add additional showerheads. Updating your shower head isn’t the only way you can bring the spa to your own bathroom. An open layout can help the flow of your bathroom and make it feel bigger; the easiest way to achieve this is a glass door shower. Glass door showers are timeless and can improve the look of your entire bathroom.

Soak, Soak, Soak
Nothing says spa quite like unwinding in the bathtub. The bathtub is typically where our eyes are drawn when we first walk into a bathroom. There are various options when looking at tubs such as a classic clawfoot, or a modern free standing tub. The bathtub that you choose immediately adds style to your bathroom. For extra relaxation, don’t forget your candles and bathtub caddy tray!

Creating a spa oasis in your own home bathroom can be as easy as making a few updates! Paying attention to color ensures that you will maintain a calm and serene feeling in your bathroom. Adding simple and timeless décor and organization can give your bathroom a high-end feel while keeping it clean and pleasing to the eye. Updating your shower allows you to create an experience as unique as you are every time you shower.  Having a stylish and functional bathtub is the last check on your checklist to creating your own oasis!

5 Space Saving Tips for Your Kitchen

The kitchen is the workhorse of the house. Not only does it entertain, but it also cooks, cleans, and houses a multitude of appliances both small and large. When it comes to storing the tools needed to perform all these tasks, space can get tight. That’s why you should take advantage of every inch you have.

Consider these space saving tips so your kitchen can effectively dish out the work you demand from it.

1. Pull-out drawers
When most people think storage the first thing that comes to mind is bigger or more cabinets. While that’s not a bad idea, there’s also a better one.

Many people don’t realize that standard cabinets with fixed drawers contain a lot of wasted space, especially when it comes to space below the counter top.

Take advantage of all your cabinets’ space by installing sliding drawers and baskets. These pull out so you can store (and reach) items in the far rear of the cabinet without having to move anything aside.

2. Lazy Susans
For cabinets hanging above the counter, utilize Lazy Susans. These turntables are especially handy in corners, where cabinets are deeper and sometimes difficult to reach.

3. Baskets & Bins
Not everything needs to be hidden away behind a cabinet door. Some items that are frequently accessed — like phone chargers, notepads, pens, or the like — are best stored in bins or baskets.

If your kitchen is fitted with a breakfast bar, consider installing small sliding bins underneath the bar, where they’ll be out of the way but easily accessible.

4. Functional storage
Aside from adding more cabinets, integrating functional storage pieces into your kitchen is a great way to save space. Islands are kitchen essentials and can be fitted with drawers and bins.

Even better, rolling islands (aka kitchen carts or workstations) are an excellent for smaller kitchens. They provide mobile counter top space (some are fitted with butcher block tops and can serve as mobile cutting boards) as well as shelves underneath for storing things like cookbooks, cutting boards, dishcloths, or other items.

Bonus: When you’re hosting, a kitchen cart can be decked out with cheese, appetizers, or drinks and rolled wherever the party is!

5. Multipurpose tools
Nothing saves space like downsizing but there’s no need to worry about getting rid of essential tools in the process. Many of today’s kitchen tools and appliances have been redesigned to have multiple uses.

Consider cutting boards with built-in, pop-out colanders, or small food processors that can do anything from chop to whip to grind meat. Or invest in a good stand mixer, a tool that has an almost endless number of attachments, making it good for mixing batter, making pasta, and grating cheese, among other things.

Other more old-fashioned tools, like cast iron pans, help save space because they’re good for the stove top as well as the oven or grill, cutting down on having separate pans for sautéing, baking, and roasting.

When you put these tips to work you’ll be surprised at how much more spacious — and effective — your kitchen can be

6 Brilliant Tips to Organize and Declutter Your Bathroom

The bathroom is the space where most of us begin and end our days. We shower in there in the mornings and get ready, and that experience sets the tone for the hours that lay ahead. We brush our teeth and wash our faces in the evening, preparing for a good night’s sound sleep. It makes sense then, that our bathroom should be a place of calm serenity.

Read on for six simple tips to transform your bathroom.

1. Think Neutral
There are amazing, wildly patterned, bright colored shower curtains, rugs and towels on the market. While these styles might be tempting, they could be overwhelming, especially in a smaller bathroom.

Consider using mostly neutral tones with a few pops of color. This will help create a serene, calming room which naturally lends to a sense of order and organization.

2. Make it Uniform
When possible, make things match. Using uniform refillable bottles for shampoo, conditioner, and body lotion will cut down on visual stimuli and make the bathroom appear and feel more orderly.

A bathroom with three mismatched towels hanging in it will seem much more cluttered than one with three towels of the same color or pattern. Invest in matching bath towels, hand towels, and face cloths.

3. Give Everything a Home
Items that you don’t use that often should be kept out of sight in the medicine cabinet, under the sink, or in drawers.

Things you use every-day should be accessible. Make these items part of your bathroom decor by storing Q-tips and cottons balls in attractive jars and corralling toiletries with a pretty tray.

4. Organize Hidden Spaces
Keep like items together. For instance, dedicate one large drawer to your hair dryer, flat iron, brush, and styling products. When things are easy to find, you save time and experience more order psychologically.

Reduce clutter by getting rid of stuff you don’t use. When in doubt, throw it out. The chances are unlikely that you’ll miss something that you never use anyway.

5. Utilize Vertical Space
If you don’t have space in the bathroom to spread out, spread up. Get creative with towel bars and shelving to maximize your space. Over the toilet organizers can be a great way to add storage without making the room feel like it’s closing in on you.

6. Keep it Clean
Cleanliness is the mother of order. It doesn’t take long for things to get out of hand–a towel gets tossed on the floor, the toothpaste lid isn’t returned to the tube, and the hairspray gets left out on the counter. Before you know it, the bathroom feels like it’s in total disarray. Nip these enemies of organization in the bud by setting aside five minutes every-day to tidy up and a half hour every week to deep clean.

Life is chaotic, but the bathroom doesn’t have to be. Give these tips a try and see if maintaining an orderly, peaceful bathroom helps to set the tone for orderly, peaceful days and nights.

10 Decorative Ideas Using Mirrors in Your Bathroom

Your bathroom should be a space that is both comfortable and functional. It’s one of the most used rooms in your home. If you’re looking to do a complete overhaul or just want to update your design game, consider using mirrors to reflect your personal style in your bathroom.

Make a statement.
Choose a statement mirror with a fun and fancy border or antique frame. This will infuse a bit of individuality in a bathroom done in simple, clean lines or a monochromatic color scheme. In very small spaces, using a statement mirror may take the place of hanging a picture or adding other decorations.

Create space and add privacy.
Incorporate mirrored shower doors in a small or narrow bathroom. Mirrors reflect light, making smaller spaces look and feel larger. Make the most of a tiny space and add a layer of privacy not found with ordinary glass doors.

Add some round edges to a square space.
Bathrooms often are all rectangular in shape with hard edges everywhere catching the eye. Circular mirrors establish a new line of vision in a room that can otherwise be very angular.

Break up with your long wall mirror.
Many bathrooms are designed with one long mirror spanning the length of your vanity. Instead of one mirror, hang several square mirrors side-by-side to add an element of interest and visually break up the wall space.

Light it up.
Add a back-light or illuminated edge to your bathroom mirrors. Not only will this change the look of your bathroom, it will create ambiance. The additional soft lighting can make this a more relaxing space for you to unwind.

Go vertical.
Don’t limit yourself to squares or a long, wide rectangle. Hang your rectangular mirror vertically over your vanity. You’ll still get the same functionality with the added illusion of height . You can also prop a floor-to-ceiling mirror against an open wall to give additional height to the room by taking advantage of vertical space.

Try something different in the background.
Use small mirrors as tiles to create a one-of-a-kind backsplash. This doesn’t have to be limited to your vanity. Insert a mirror behind a freestanding bathtub or in an alcove designed to store toiletries.

Show your personality.
Find unique shapes. Don’t be afraid to look outside the squares and circles that are typical in mirror designs. Look for scalloped edges, sunbursts or anything that suits your unique design aesthetic.

Create a frame for your lighting.
Let your mirrors do some multitasking. Use dual vanity mirrors over double sinks to frame interesting lighting choices. A beautiful sconce or small wall lamp can be placed between the mirrors or at their sides for a balanced look.

Mix but don’t match.
This will work best in bathrooms with a bit more wall space. There is no need to settle on one style when it comes to mirrors in your bathroom. Use several mirrors with the same shape but of different sizes to hang in gallery format on your wall. Or, choose a large mirror in one shape and surround it with smaller mirrors in a different shape.


Tile Flooring for Kitchen: Pros and Cons

As a practical flooring material, tile is an excellent choice for almost any room of the home, especially in the kitchen. With a beautiful look and easy-cleaning style, tile flooring adds value to the home. A wide range of colors, styles and types of tile flooring are available, and there are pros and cons to each that homeowners should consider before making final decisions about adding tile to the kitchen.

Functional Appeal
The appeal of tile flooring is timeless, and the homeowner can choose from a variety of styles for a rustic or contemporary look. The versatility of this flooring material means there are options to match any decor style in the home and create a space that is both beautiful and practical. The variety of sizes in which floor tiles are available make it adaptable to large or small spaces and easily customized to fit unusual areas or oddly shaped rooms.

Preventing Damage
Tile can be a fragile material, and breaking or cracking it is possible if it is not properly supported or subjected to heavy blows. Tile should be installed with a solid substrate and backerboard or an uncoupling membrane to ensure that it can hold up to the weight of appliances and heavy foot traffic. The homeowner should avoid dropping pots or other heavy items on the tile flooring surface.

Slip Hazards
Tile can also be very slippery, especially when it is wet. Luckily for homeowners, tile is rated for slip resistance, and choosing a tile that will not become a hazard when it is wet is a wise option. Although non-slip tile is not as critical in kitchens as it is in bathrooms, it is important to choose tile that is safe in any areas of the home where water is present.

Maintenance Needs
Tile and grout require maintenance, and depending on the type of tile and grout that is used, the homeowner should plan on sealing the floor’s surface annually. Some types of stone or porcelain may not require sealing, and paired with epoxy grout, maintenance needs can be greatly reduced. Although the costs of these materials are higher, it is a tradeoff for ease of maintenance.

Cold or Warm
Although tile flooring feels cold, it is also an excellent type of flooring to install over a radiant heating system. This gives homeowners the option of warming tile floors in the winter for warm feet and a cozy home. Although embedding hot water pipes or electric cable under the tile is a practical and functional way to heat a home, tile has no ability to insulate the floors, so it will feel cold unless the radiant heating system is actively in use.

Dreaming of a Spa Tub at Home? Guide to Buying Tubs and Whirlpools

The key player in any bathroom remodel is, undoubtedly, the bathtub. In addition to maintaining a striking, inviting appearance that works to pull the entire bathroom together, bathtubs have a variety of health benefits. This combination of positive attributes make bathtubs a popular choice for installation through the ages.

The Health Benefits of Bath Time
Fortunately for bath lovers, the act of soaking in a bath comes with a plethora of health benefits. Bath time assists with health issues such as insomnia, headaches, blood circulation, blood pressure, and weight loss, among other things. Baths clarify the skin, relieving issues such as eczema, in addition to clearing any muscle tension that has built up throughout a day’s work. Submerging beneath the soothing bath water does more than just relax the body physically. Taking a bath is the perfect way to soothe the mind as well. Many studies have shown that the act of lying down in warm water at a horizontal level improves the bath lover’s mood significantly. With this information in mind, it’s important to choose a comfortable bathtub during any bathroom remodeling process.

The Advantages of a Top-of-the-Line Whirlpool Tub
Homeowners who dream of taking their bathroom remodel to the next level should consider kicking things up a notch by adding a whirlpool to the mix. These Jacuzzi-style tubs fit with water-blowing jets are the ring leaders in the industry of relaxation today. The feeling of water pushing against the skin at powerful speeds takes an abundance of pressure off those muscles and joints that tend to get overused day to day. Powerful whirlpool water jets work to relax the muscles along the back as well, encouraging blood to flow in a fluid motion throughout the body. Additionally, whirlpool tubs are an excellent investment for homeowners who suffer from arthritis or chronic pain. The rapid movement of hot water around the body helps to reduce muscle and joint pain one water droplet at a time.

The Bold Look of a Whirlpool
In addition to being known for their long lists of health benefits, whirlpool tubs are desirable simply because of their striking appearances. With wide depths and curves abounding, a whirlpool tub is clearly the most inviting of any bathtub available on the market today. It’s hard for any owner of a whirlpool tub to resist filling their deep tub with water at the end of a long day, turning the jets on for the ultimate escape. Any bathtub is a key player in a bathroom remodel, but a whirlpool tub ties the entire bathroom’s design and purpose together.

Selecting the Right Bathtub for a Bathroom Remodel
Fortunate for any bathroom remodeler, there are several different bathtub options available to suit a variety of budgets. Cast iron and acrylic tubs are less expensive in price, but just as easy on the eyes when it comes to creating a unified bathroom appearance. The Bath & Kitchen Showplace can find the perfect bathtub to suit any remodeling budget.

3 Reasons to Use Ceramic and Porcelain Tiles When Renovating Your Bathroom and Kitchen

Remodeling can either be exciting or become a hassle. There are many factors that must be considered when renovating a high activity space such as the bathroom or kitchen. Functionality in those areas is critical; not only do the features of those rooms need to be practical, but as the person using those spaces, you should also be able to enjoy them from an aesthetic perspective. Porcelain and ceramic tiles are functional options for those of you looking to re-do your kitchen or bathroom in terms of practicality and satisfaction. Keep reading below to learn of three benefits of using ceramic and porcelain tiles when renovating your kitchen or bathroom.

1. They’re Easy to Clean
The two rooms in your home most prone to becoming messy are the kitchen and the bathroom for obvious reasons. Food, makeup, soap, the list goes on for the number of products that can dirty your surfaces. When renovating, consider tiles like ceramic and porcelain to make clean up incredibly simple. Because both materials are not porous, they can withstand the mess of various items. Neither liquid nor solid will put up a fight when you want to clean up. Additionally, depending on the size of the tile, the gaps between each tile can be very thin, preventing too many small messes from getting trapped if your tiles haven’t be grouted yet.

2. They’re Resistant to Water Damage
Naturally, your bathroom floor is going to get wet. There are mats to protect you from slipping, but what matters is the material underneath. There’s a reason that most bathrooms don’t have wooden or carpeted floors, and that’s because the water damage would be incredible and consistent. Ceramic and porcelain off protection from unnecessary water damage, especially if it’s the cause for renovation in the first place. Don’t allow history to repeat itself. Tiled walls in the shower are a no-brainer. A tiled backsplash in the kitchen is wise for areas around the sink, especially the faucet, where sneaky leaks might creep up and cause unexpected problems.

3. They Make Your Space Pleasant
Every renovator should be reassured with the performance of their tiled walls and floors. Beyond that, the room should be a place you enjoy being in. Cooking is more enjoyable in a pleasant kitchen, and getting ready early in the morning isn’t too bad when your bathroom is efficient and comfortable. The wonderful thing about ceramic and porcelain tiles is that they’re incredibly versatile. You can find them in various colors, finishes, and shapes. Creating designs with tiles is an overlooked technique and saves you from the hassles of painting on a wall that’s otherwise unprotected from water and other substances found in kitchens and bathrooms. Open the blinds and let light reflect off of your white tiles to add the feeling of more space to your bathroom. Cooking in a cramped kitchen is a hot, unpleasant experience, but that can be remedied by choosing the proper tiles to maximize the efficiency and comfort the room will provide once it’s been renovated.

When you decide to give your bathroom or kitchen some changes, be sure to keep in mind the practicality of the new additions. Ceramic and porcelain tiles offer practicality, protection, and comfort. Happy renovating!


7 Things You Need Know Before Buying a Kitchen Sink

Count the instances where the kitchen sink is in use. Vegetable rinsing, washing dishes, filling up cups with water, and washing hands are a few examples. When it is replacement time, comparisons to the old one is handy. The chosen sink came from quality research too. Therefore, these tips are an outline toward the endgame: a sink worthy of the heavy load.

Sinks come as one large basin, two basins, or three basins. One basin is a large area similar to a bathroom sink. The average organizer can separate dirty dishes from hand washing silverware. For the homeowner who prefers dividers, select two or three basins. Three-basin sinks come with evenly matched basins on either side. The middle part becomes a garbage disposal area. Two-basin sinks come in evenly matched or offset. Evenly matched sinks are equal in size, shape, and dimension. Offset sinks differ in size, with one smaller than another.

Kitchen sinks contain various rectangular shapes. Farmhouse sinks are deep, rectangular basins with a throwback, vintage vibe for rustic and country kitchens. A double farmhouse loses the vintage vibe, yet gains the modern, traditional, or transitional edge. Rectangular sinks with rounded edges are available as well.

When homeowners search for sink materials, consider appearance, maintenance, and durability. Stainless steel is durable, easy to maintain, and blends in with any decor. Porcelain is beautiful with colored backsplash and durable. Granite is scratch-resistant and beautiful. Stone sinks are durable while blending well with stone countertops and decor. Due to pros and cons, further research is mandatory before finalization.

How will the sink install? Apron-front installation exposes the entire front sink area. Farmhouse sinks mostly share this installation. Undermount sinks install underneath the cutout area and inserted upward for a perfect fit. Most sinks are drop-in, meaning the sink installs downward into the cutout space. It rests right on top of kitchen countertops. Integral installation blends in with countertop space because both come from the same material. A helpful tip is to get measurements for the sink area. The width, length, and depth ensure the sink is a perfect fit.

White is what you see, but it doesn’t have to be what you get. Sinks come in various colors ranging from bright and dark colors to various material and texture. Color doesn’t come cheap, but if it blends with kitchen decor, the expense is worth it.

What else is necessary for the sink to function well? Drainboards, rear drains, and a deeper basin/bowl provide customization for unique results. Features bring a personal touch to generic sinks. Racks, colanders, cutting boards, knife blocks, and bowls are a few additional items available for completion.

Price must be the final step. Good sinks balance selection and price. Sink selection based on cost limits appearance and customizing possibilities. Sink selection based on selection bears no limitation. However, recklessness on finances will have equal repercussions.

Sink shopping requires advanced research. Trust a company with valued expertise in kitchen accessories and fixtures. Trust Kitchen Showplace. Professionals will show homeowners varied selections of sinks in our showroom. Touch, feel, and see the difference. Why would anyone shop anywhere else?

How To Choose The Right Bathtub

Have the perfect bathtub can truly bring out the best sense style in bathroom décor. The bathroom should be a sanctuary that makes you feel welcome and pampered as soon as you step through the door, and as a centerpiece, the bathtub serves a very important role in creating this effect.

In addition to the aesthetic appeal, the bathtub should also have features to ensure it’s been made to the best standard in quality and utility for your needs. The following factors are all things to be on the lookout for in order to ensure that you make the best bathtub purchase at all times.

You are going to want to take some time to carefully consider of the inside measurements of the bathtub. The standard measurements of the bathtub are 5’ long by 30” wide and about 14“ to 16” high.

The average exterior measurements of the bathtub are generally between 5’ and 6’ long, while being anywhere between 30” to 60” wide. In order to ensure that your bathtub’s interior is a suitably comfortable fit, make sure to look at these measurements very carefully. There’s no point in buying a deluxe tub that you can’t fit into properly.

Be aware of the fact that not every bathtub that you choose will actually have the ability to have a shower installed. You should also ensure that the water heater of the bathtub is capable of filling the entire tub with hot water to your standards.

Depending on the weight of the bathtub, the floor beneath it just might have to be reinforced so that it doesn’t create any damage to the structural integrity of the home. In addition to taking note of the weight of the bathtub, you will also need to determine whether the drain and spout should be positioned on the right side or the left side.

Bathtub categories
Different models of bathtub will often be categorized into specific categories. The different categories of bathtubs consist of (but are not limited to) the following:

  • Platform bathtubs
  • Freestanding bathtubs
  • Corner bathtubs
  • Recessed bathtubs

Platform bathtubs are the easiest of all types to clean and replace individual components, but they are a little bit more labor-intensive during installation. Freestanding bathtubs are easier to install than platform bathtubs, and they might allow for easier shower integration.

Corner bathtubs, true to the name, are installed in the corner of the bathroom. Corner bathtubs generally do not accommodate a shower installation, but they do offer a number of design options.

Finally, recessed bathtub, also called alcove bathtubs, are attached to the walls on both ends and one edge. There is a single finished side, and many of them often have faucets that are mounted on the wall that make it easy to implement a shower.

Bathtub material
The material of the bathtub is another important element to consider. Lightweight acrylic material is resistant to abrasion, cultured marble gives many different options for colors and patterns, fiberglass is economical and versatile, and cast polymer does a very good job at retaining a sufficient amount of heat.

5 Common Bathroom Designs to Avoid

What is your dream bathroom idea? Do you imagine yourself soaked in a big tub with hot water scented with exotic oils, surrounded by candles, holding a glass of wine while reading your favorite book or just washing away the day’s stress? This dream can be a nightmare if you do not plan well. Remodeling a bathroom requires much effort and detail consideration. You do not want your poor planning and consequent mistakes to be a social phenomenon and a point of reference.

1. Improper Installation
The bathroom can be an unsafe place even without installation mistakes being a small room with water, smooth surfaces, electrical outlets, fragile objects, and people all in one place. It is not surprising that most home accidents do happen in the bathroom.

Inaccurately fixed shower doors, mirrors, and electricity outlets in the bathroom can present many risks, which can even be fatal. Poorly done installation does not just weaken your structure, but it also exposes you to electrical shocks and mold. Although renovating your bathroom can be a costly project, a DIY renovation may expose you to many risks. Consider hiring an experienced and professional contractor to remodel your bathroom.

2. Awkward Colors
Bright Yellow
Bright yellow is a sparkling color, but it can be harsh to the eyes and make small spaces look even smaller. Yellow may also not be a good behind the mirror color, because it may not give a nice frame to the face. In addition, bright yellow bathroom walls are not visually appealing.

Red is too much and tragic for a tiny space. It arouses intense feelings and raises blood pressure. If you must have red in your bathroom, use it as accent color in your soap dispenser or towel trims. Consider having light touches of red in your bathroom to achieve a classy look. Be careful, too much red could be a scare.

This is a great outdoors color, like in a field of green grass, but could give you a sick feeling in your bathroom. It does not give you face a great frame if applied behind a mirror. The color is not ideal for any wall, not just your bathroom walls.

3. Uncomfortable Spacing
Tiny bathrooms can be inconvenient and discomforting. The minimum spacing requirements may not extend to how you can shop for or arrange your home amenities. When it comes to your bathroom, ample space is essential.

4. Lack of Storage
Having a bathroom with limited storage can be such an inconvenience. Having to fetch items from the bedroom to the bathroom can be annoying. Consider having enough storage in your bathroom for various bathroom items. You may limit storage space in your guest bathroom. However, ensure you have cabinets, towel racks, shelves, and hanging hooks in your bathroom. Storage is always functional.

5. Thinking Short Term
Focusing on your future needs and retaining a simple but elegant bathroom look can be an ideal way of ensuring that your bathroom design remains timeless. Installing double vanities makes your bathroom more family friendly and useful when you sell your home in the future because not everyone likes a marble sink or antique tub.

Although many people undertake bathroom-remodeling projects to enhance the visual appeal and functionality of their bathrooms, some bathroom renovation designs may have just the opposite effect.


The Bath & Kitchen Showplace
Bath & Kitchen Showplace offers everything you need for your bathroom and kitchen remodeling projects. We offer more than 50 years of experience to help our customers in the Austin, Dallas and Arlington areas find the best plumbing and fixture products for every budget. Please browse our site and let us know how we can help you.