Clippings by napagirl

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Photobucket tip - high quality photos

posted by: redroze on 04.21.2009 at 10:54 pm in Kitchens Forum

I was always frustrated at the quality of my photos in Photobucket. I never realized that the default image quality for uploading photos is medium quality. If you choose the higher quality version it makes SUCH a difference in the look of your photos!!

Here's the lower quality version, which you can see is blurrier:

And the high. I chose the 1024x768 (17" screen) option:

I'm in the process of updating the finished kitchen pics in my blog as well. I'll post later once our kitchen table and chairs are in...we get them at the end of this month, woohoo.

My finished kitchen post


clipped on: 04.26.2009 at 05:10 am    last updated on: 04.26.2009 at 05:11 am

RE: Show me your corner sinks, please! (Follow-Up #6)

posted by: katybuggs on 12.24.2008 at 12:12 pm in Kitchens Forum

I had a corner sink for years and loved it. I didn't have a cabinet but a window. I was thinking of doing a corner sink in my new kitchen but it would be in the peninsula and I chickened out. This is not my kitchen but a photo of a corner sink with a bit of character

sink in corner


clipped on: 04.26.2009 at 02:47 am    last updated on: 04.26.2009 at 02:49 am

RE: Sink in a corner? (Follow-Up #20)

posted by: jayjay_teacher on 07.28.2008 at 10:38 am in Kitchens Forum

I went with a corner sink after no other layout seemed to work for us. Moving the window was not an option. Before the reno the sink was in front of a blank wall, and this way when I am at the sink the window is where I can easily see out. Since I have a farm sink there is no problem with leaning over. We LOVE it!

Corner Sink


clipped on: 04.26.2009 at 02:37 am    last updated on: 04.26.2009 at 02:39 am

Minnesota Kitchen Pics

posted by: dlspellman on 09.30.2008 at 08:40 pm in Kitchens Forum

We completed this kitchen in January - just getting around to posting some photos. There are a couple small things still missing when I took these photos, primarily the trim base of the fridge/freezer armoire.

I love all my appliances (Thermador Columns (30" ea), GE Induction cooktop (30"), GE Profile Advantium and GE Convection Oven (27") and my Miele Dishwasher with the fantastic silverware rack.
I also love my Kohler Smart Divide sink in Sea Salt, Soapstone counters, and the Walnut topped island. Cabinets were custom --Lightly distressed, painted with Benj. Moore Linen white and then lightly glazed.
Another favorite - I positioned a large cutting board in the island opposite the DW/sink, and partially over the extra tall/LARGE (fake drawer) garbage bin below it on the right -- chop and scrape right into the garbage - better than Rachel Rays garbage bowl! One last favorite - I used my nasty corner for a lazy susan with 3 recycle bins in it - glass, plastic and paper.
Oh, a little trick of the eye - the upper cabinets have mirrors instead of glass to reflect light and to hide all those oils and spices in the cabinets. The KD was skeptical about it, but I wanted it (had seen a magazine photo) - she admits it looks great!

Hope this helps you in your planning - this website was a life saver for me as we planned ours! I found more info & ideas here than I did from my KD and appliance sale reps...


clipped on: 01.28.2009 at 07:08 pm    last updated on: 01.28.2009 at 07:08 pm

RE: Who cuts out the sink/faucet holes in the plywood? (Follow-Up #9)

posted by: azstoneconsulting on 05.22.2008 at 12:47 am in Kitchens Forum

We cut a section of the plywood out so that we don't
have to deal with the hassles, and our customers appreciate
the extra service touch that we do - here's an example:

here's the sink in place with the faucet held where it will
eventually go:


finished product:


this way, we don't have to worry about drilling holes in
plywood subtop - so we don't antagonize any primadona plumbers....

just have your Fabricator drill the holes in the wood when he drills the stone...

It's NOT rocket science..... ;)

Hope that helps


Kevin M. Padden
Fabricator, Trainer & Consultant to the Natural Stone Industry


clipped on: 05.25.2008 at 09:15 pm    last updated on: 05.25.2008 at 09:15 pm

RE: help me find chicken wire glass panels! (Follow-Up #3)

posted by: allison0704 on 10.24.2007 at 11:31 am in Kitchens Forum

Thank you, Cleo. :)

I just have chicken wire but it was installed after it arrived to the warehouse. I went over the chicken wire with the glaze leftover from the cabinets (to take away the shine and color).

The photo below is a close up of the coffee station - located between kitchen and laundry room in the hallway. It has two of these lift-up doors with chicken wire.

You can see more/newer pictures of my kitchen in Kitchens We Love (scroll down to the middle of the page). You can click on the pictures to enlarge.

Here is a link that might be useful: KWL


clipped on: 10.25.2007 at 08:18 pm    last updated on: 05.25.2008 at 09:06 pm

Soapstone DIY finally complete!

posted by: don_chuwish on 03.23.2008 at 04:53 pm in Kitchens Forum

Friday night I was amazed to find myself putting the final piece of backsplash on. Saturday was spent mostly cleaning up and putting things away.
Thanks to everyone who has posted info that I read or answered direct questions, this forum has been invaluable. Now it's my turn to reciprocate. I don't pretend to be a pro or any kind of expert, but I hope this helps from a DIY standpoint.
I'll link a few pictures in this posting, but you can see the whole gallery on Photobucket, each picture has comments and between them they pretty much tell the story. Album is here:

Some teaser images:

Various parts of my story in progress have been posted in other threads, but I'll try to mention some key points here.
We were very interested in keeping cost down, so the DIY option with soapstone was wonderful to discover. A quality granite or Silestone install would have been triple the cost.
We went to M. Teixeira in N.J. and picked our slabs. If I had it to do over I would NOT have chosen two side by side slabs. The vein patterns are too similar and end up repeating each other in our kitchen. Out of 4-5 side by side slabs I'd take the 1st and last, for example.
When planning how the slabs will be cut, I'd suggest the backsplash pieces be taken from exactly the same spot as the counter they will sit on later, so that the veins and everything match.
Black epoxy was best for 99% of the seams in our install, but where it crossed a white vein I had to make some corrections - digging the black out with a Dremel and replacing with "Instant Install 29" epoxy, which cures to a translucent white. The Instant Install 29 is great to work with, 14 minute working time and then it suddenly hardens up, locking things into place. You can sand it 15 minutes later (thus the name, 14+15=29). It can be tinted to match the stone too. 5 minute epoxies are too fast for big seams I think.
Make sure your cabinet tops are a perfectly even plain, 6' long levels help. Shim any and all gaps - none of mine were more than 1/16". Then get a bead of caulk on the cabinet tops before resting the stone on them. This just makes for perfectly even support all around. We used bottle jacks to lift the stone up a few inches, caulk under it, then set it back down gently.
Doing the caulk and a seam at the same time is daunting, but the caulk has a long setup time, so it works out OK. You can slide the stone over an inch to close the seam after buttering on the epoxy. Jam it as tight as possible to make a thin seam. Most important for a good looking seam is to have the two stones perfectly aligned - any height difference will have to be fixed by sanding one down to match the other.
Diamond cutting and shaping tools are great. They cut the harder parts of the stone just as well as the soft parts, which makes for nice straight lines and even surfaces. A diamond grit drum on an angle grinder is great for shaping the edge of a sink cutout, for example. Regular sandpaper drums don't do as well.
The dust from cutting and shaping is amazing, wait till it's warm and do as much outside as possible. If you can't, like me, then get a good fine particle dust filter for your shop-vac and always attach a collection hose to the tool, or have someone hold the hose right at your cut. It makes a huge difference.
When cutting you need to support the stone underneath, so it won't fall away and break off before the cut is done. I had 1/2" thick styrofoam sheets available, but thick rubber mats from Costco would work too. The photo album shows a good example of this in practice.
For final sanding I tried a million things. What worked best on the flat areas (to clean up seams) was a 5" wet sanding pad on a dual action polisher at its lowest speed. I used a Porter-Cable 7336. Sanding pads were 240 and 400 grit. For a backer pad I used a flexible one made for car buffing, rigid pads were too hard to handle. For product specifics, see my other post on this topic. Edges can be sanded with a good hand block and wet sandpaper. The highest grit with any benefit I found to be 400. Others may stop at 220 or 340 - just a matter of preference.
I feel like there's a million things to say but this has rambled on enough. Happy to answer questions and add details in follow up posts. But if you're looking for tips, please do check out the full Photo bucket album. There's 80 images covering every step of the way.

Thanks again everyone and happy Easter!


clipped on: 04.29.2008 at 04:07 pm    last updated on: 04.29.2008 at 04:09 pm

RE: Do You Have A Cooktop Hood Similar To This One? pic. (Follow-Up #13)

posted by: igloochic on 04.02.2008 at 10:23 pm in Kitchens Forum

LOL Cleo I only have two houses right now, one with a future plaster and granite hood and one with a brick hood enclosure. The French House (with the butlers pantry) is still waiting to go on the market so I can arm wrestle someone for it....but I do NEED that house!)

I hesitate to show pics of my hood as it is now because it takes a vision to understand what it will look like, but to show what is (or can be) under a massive plaster hood (lynne's looked a lot like mine but different shape) this is the dead body:



The top area (about 3" at the ceiling) will have crown molding on it that matches the crown around the room (cherry with an autumn glaze). The sloping area is now drywalled and smoothed out, and that will have venetian plaster on it to match the walls in a soft pumpkin tone. It is real venetian plaster (Marmarmino actually which has both marble and lime dust in the mixture). And then that flat area will be trimmed out mantel style with a trim on the top and the bottom (smaller but similar to the crown molding) which will sandwich about a 10" strip of nordic black antiqued granite. THe granite is the same I'm using to frame the chickens that go between the range and the hood:

I love the stone and plaster hoods myself. They have such a presence in the room and really warm up a kitchen. Lynne's is quite pretty as well and she's done a lovely backsplash behind it. (She'll peep in here soon I'm sure...she can't avoid a hood post if her life depended on it).


clipped on: 04.18.2008 at 07:29 am    last updated on: 04.18.2008 at 07:30 am


posted by: judithva on 07.18.2006 at 10:54 am in Home Decorating Forum

I was bored the other day and thought I'd play with some accessorizing, it's so hard to get right, it drives me crazy! First pic is a bit of a "play" on the formal with the "french country". The Rooster is a "nod" to my family history (my dad was brought up on a poultry farm)
Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

This is a night pic without flash.

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

A view of the same area in the day time.

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting


clipped on: 02.11.2008 at 07:49 pm    last updated on: 02.11.2008 at 08:03 pm

My DIY is finally finished

posted by: bamaspice on 02.22.2007 at 12:04 pm in Kitchens Forum

Thanks to everyone on this board---Remember we had thermofoil laminate cabinets...I removed the laminate and then painted and glazed. We also had feet made for the cabinets. Thanks to everyone for all the support. Especially,thanks to Bill V for holding my hand. Everytime I look at the tile...I get tickled!! Who would have thought..I could do it myself :-)

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting
Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting


clipped on: 02.11.2008 at 03:45 pm    last updated on: 02.11.2008 at 03:45 pm

RE: My honed carrara island...sob... (Follow-Up #10)

posted by: azstoneconsulting on 12.13.2007 at 07:01 am in Kitchens Forum


dmiller and others are all telling you the best advice
I think you can get... give your Carrara Marble a chance
and have a qualified restoration contract take a look at it.

In my opinion, you have a "classic" look in the color
combination that you currently have in your kitchen:
Carrara & Soapstone... very nice aesthetically!

I have attached a link that may be helpful to you in
the care & cleaning of your tops - it's found at the
Marble Institute of Amercia's web site under videos -
it's free to watch, and helpful - especially IF your
Fabricator did not give you much in terms of "after the
sale/care & use of your tops/education"

There are products that can help protect your Carrara
as well, like:
Stone Enhancers (Tenax Ager, Aquamix En-Rich & Seal)
Sealers (Miracle 511-Porous Plus, Surface Treatment Technologies)
that will keep everything looking good.

Hope that helps ya


Kevin M. Padden MIA SFA
Fabricator, Trainer & Consultant to the Natural Stone Industry

Here is a link that might be useful: MIA's Care & Cleaning Video


clipped on: 12.14.2007 at 04:49 am    last updated on: 12.14.2007 at 04:50 am

RE: Corner Sink...advice and or rules? (Follow-Up #21)

posted by: marandall on 08.24.2007 at 12:43 pm in Kitchens Forum

So sorry I am just getting to this! Hope these pics help, but if you need more details just ask! I tried to put a little info under each picture to clarify. Wish my kitchen was finished, because the countertops will really define the angles and I'm hoping that will look good. There are "a lot of details" going on in that corner... hope it is not too "fussy" once completed! The corner feels roomy and comfortable even with a pullout open, not crowded at all. My previous corner was recessed back 6" also, but without the shallow (17" deep)pullouts. Keep me posted on your corner!

Here is a link that might be useful: corner sink views and measurements


PICS & CABINET MEASUREMENTS OF MARANDALL'S CORNER SINK - GOOD INFO (this is on same thread as the next clipping)
clipped on: 12.12.2007 at 03:56 pm    last updated on: 12.12.2007 at 04:00 pm

Hey Napagirl... about that crazy corner of mine! (Follow-Up #33)

posted by: marandall on 09.13.2007 at 04:14 pm in Kitchens Forum

Hey Napa... thought you might like to get a better look at the zigzags around my corner apron sink with the countertops on. Just got the granite this morning! I am so excited! It is not perfect, but it worked out really well considering the unusual shape. One side required quite a bit of shimming and won't be caulked till the color matched caulk comes. Now for the backsplash decisions!


CORNER SINK PIC - this thread has dropped off, missed saving it by 2 hours!
clipped on: 12.12.2007 at 03:54 pm    last updated on: 12.12.2007 at 03:55 pm

finished - finally! pics

posted by: mnhockeymom on 11.14.2007 at 09:33 am in Kitchens Forum

Thank you again to all those who've posted their experiences and wisdom and taken the time to discuss issues and answer questions. After two years of building our dream home in Minnesota and then living in it a mere 18 mos, we moved very suddenly 1500 miles away - we've been in MA just under two years but spent the first 9 months in temporary housing. We moved into this place 14 mos ago and started with all the "easy" stuff (HVAC, new lighting, taking down wallpaper, painting, refinishing floors, etc etc) - we started phase 1 of the major stuff in late June (kitchen, dining room,two baths, mudroom) and have just moved back up from the basement!

I kept an online collection of pics so there are many *before* and *after* pics in there (the first few pages of pics are the important ones) - I hope you enjoy!



clipped on: 11.16.2007 at 03:23 am    last updated on: 11.18.2007 at 04:46 am

RE: finished - finally! pics with LINK for more (Follow-Up #1)

posted by: mnhockeymom on 11.14.2007 at 09:35 am in Kitchens Forum

Here's the pictures link:

Here is a link that might be useful: Before And AFTER Pics!


clipped on: 11.16.2007 at 03:21 am    last updated on: 11.16.2007 at 03:22 am

RE: Can I vent? (Follow-Up #3)

posted by: talley_sue_nyc on 10.24.2007 at 07:09 pm in Kitchens Forum

he just brings the wire out of the junction box in the wall in conduit, UNDER the cabinets. And bolts the conduit to the "block" at the beginning of the Plugmold raceway. And he screws the Plugmold raceway to the underside of the cabinets.

The Plugmold raceway comes in two parts--a bottom and a top. You screw the bottom to the surface, connect the wires to the wires in the "block" w/ little specialized clips, and then snap the top back on to cover it.

He doesn't leave exposed wire in your cabinets--what kind of a maroon is he? Is he a licensed electrician? OK, a little "doohickey," but honestlly!

I'd be tempted to tell him that his unfamiliarity with this product, and his comments about exposed wires are making you fear that he is incompetent, unlicensed, and without coaching from someone w/ more experience. And that he should worry about that, and you'll be calling to see if his license is in order, and whether there's someone SAFE that you can use instead.

Tell him to call around to his peers and find someone w/ lots of experience working w/ Plugmold (it gets used a lot in industrial situations), surely he knows someone who has installed it.

If you dig around on Wiremold's website, there might be installation instructions.


clipped on: 10.24.2007 at 07:50 pm    last updated on: 10.24.2007 at 07:51 pm

RE: Paint island a french country cream - suggestions please!!!! (Follow-Up #3)

posted by: madsprayer on 10.19.2007 at 11:00 pm in Kitchens Forum


I do this professionally and I do not understand why your designer thought it was a bad idea. I have seen stunning results with this combination, and would not hesitate at all.

I spray most of my work, but this is what I would do if I had to use a brush:
(I prefer to use only milk paint on painted cabinets due to both its outstanding durability, easy clean-up, and quick dry time)

Clean entire surface with TSP solution mixed with water. Sand lightly with 320 grit sanding sponge

Prime island with Bin Shellac based primer. Sand lightly again with 320 grit sponge.

1 quart Snow White EF Finishes Milk Paint
1 pint Buttermilk Yellow EF Finishes Milk Paint
* Mix 1/2 pint of Buttermilk Yellow and 1 quart Snow white together and add 10% tap water...stir completely
Apply 2 - 3 coats to attain your desired coverage.

Sand lightly again 320 grit.

1 pint Van Dyke Brown EF Milk Paint Glaze Effects
* Use artists brush to lightly color recesses and profiles and immediately wipe down, repeat until you get the look you want. If the glaze starts to dry too fast simply add water or use a dampened cloth to remove more easily.

Apply 2 coats EF Topcoat Poly Satin finish.

Wait 8 hours

Sand LIGHTLY 320 grit 1 last time.

Apply finish coat Satin Poly.

The piece will look like it came from a top manufacturer

or you can pay somebody like me $500-$800 to spray, glaze, and finish it.

EF Finishes Milk Paint is available from Woodcraft dealers, which have stores nationwide and on the web. It is slightly more expensive than BM but it is a much higher quality finish for fine wood. The Ben Moore product for this application is Impervo enamel, which is used for industrial applications and has not changed much in the past 20 years. Simply, you can do much better.

Hope this helps!


How to, Milk Paint w/glaze
clipped on: 10.23.2007 at 10:17 pm    last updated on: 10.24.2007 at 12:08 am

RE: rubbed oil finishes on cabinets (Follow-Up #4)

posted by: pirula on 06.03.2007 at 08:14 am in Kitchens Forum

But it's not hard to do DIY, if that's any consolation. I gotta tell ya, I did all my counters with a handrubbed tung oil finish and it took a very long time. Weeks in fact. You have to sand very carefully, then you have to do the first coat....and wait and wait and wait. I often had to wait as much as five days before it was really truly ready for the next coat. All in all, it took about eight coats. Not sure cabinets would take that many. The counters were beautiful with just the first coat, but I needed durability and water resistance so did eight coats. Water beads now, no problems. May not have to go that far with cabinets. Perhaps three coats would be sufficient.

I also did the island wrong the first time (used WAY too much oil) and ended up having to resand it and start over. Glad I did, it was totally worth it. The point is that rococogurl is right (as usual), I can't imagine what someone would have charged me to do this.

But it's a very durable finish, and it's gorgeous. If you have chemical sensitivities you can get the citrus solvent vice a regular solvent. Hopefully that should be better for you. Link below. This is used on counters to make them food safe. Sure the cabinets don't have to be food safe, but this may be worth it to not have a reaction.

My counters get heavy use and do get a scratch on ocassion. A quick swipe with a little tung oil and good bye scratch. I can only imagine how beautiful cabinets done in this finish would be.

Waterlox stinks to high heaven. I had to move my son and myself out for a week and we have no sensitivities. It's just stinky. It's great stuff too though, our floors are beautiful.

Good luck

Here is a link that might be useful: citrus solvent


Tung oil on counters
clipped on: 10.21.2007 at 07:24 pm    last updated on: 10.21.2007 at 07:25 pm

RE: Picture of gel stain on cabinet door (Follow-Up #17)

posted by: celticmoon on 10.13.2007 at 03:19 pm in Kitchens Forum

I have posted this before but it eventually scrolls off. With apologies for the length and repetion, I will post it again for Brutuses and Hedygs and anybody else. Feel free to email me also...

Background Story:

My cabinets are frameless, good condition and good layout. But the finish had gone orange and ugly, with the oak graining too busy for me. Cabinets are 18 years old, very poorly finished oak veneered slab doors. Plain with no crevices. They hadn't even take the doors off to finish them!!! No stain or finish was even on the hinge side edges, just dirty ol naked wood. Cheesy, huh?

I looked into changing out cabinets, but that was way too much money, since my layout was OK. And I am cheap, er, frugal. Painting didn't seem right because the doors were plain slabs. I considered new doors but that still meant a lot of money. For a few years I tried to figure a way to add molding toward a mission look, but the rounded door edges made that impossible. Then trolling in a kitchen emporium showroom this last year I noticed dark wood slab doors, kind like mine, but darker. That was the answer.

First I tried Minwax Polyshades. Dicey product. Hard to brush on neatly, then gummy, then seemed to leave a sticky tacky residue. I did a thread on the Woodworking site "Evil Polyshades to the Rescue" which elicited a lot of conflicting "expert" opinions and arguments that one must strip. I stripped the whole first floor of a Victorian once. No thanks. Jennifer-in-clyde (in the same boat)and I stumbled around to get to our method. Found the General Finishes products to work much better. Very easy to apply. Texture is like almost-done pudding, real silky. Just smear it on and wipe off the excess. Couldn't be easier. (see for more info including where to find products. Disclaimer: I have no relationship to them other than being a satisfied customer.)

Here is the play by play:

screwdrivers (for dismantling doors and hardware), box-o-disposable gloves from Walgreen's, old socks or rags, fine sandpaper, disposable small plastic bowls or plates, and plastic spoons or forks, mineral spirits, miracle cloth (optional), General Finishes Java gel stain (or another color) and General Finishes clear top coat (Both are poly based). Optional: General Finishes Expresso water based stain as another layer for maximum darkness.

You will need a place to work and leave wet doors to dry overnight - I set up 2 spaces, garage for sanding/cleaning and basement for staining/sealing. Plan on blocks of 20-30-minutes for sanding/cleaning bundles of say, 6 doors at a time. Then just 10 minute sessions to wipe on coats.

1)Remove the doors and all the hardware from one section of the kitchen. 4-6 doors is a good amount.

2) Clean the wood surface thoroughly. Then go over the wood lightly with sandpaper, just a very light skim sand to give the existing finish some tooth. No more than a minute a door. Rough up the surface is all. A miracle cloth is great for getting off the dust. Then wipe well with mineral spirits to clean well.

3) Open and stir the can o gel THOROUGHLY with your fork or spoon. Spoon some gel into your plastic bowl and reseal the can. This keeps you from contaminating the gels with crud or grit.

4) Put on the disposable gloves and slip an old sock onto one hand. Scoop some gel up and smear it on (It feels really nice and doesn't even smell too awful), then wipe down to remove the excess. I did the coats in the following order and let each dry well overnight:

-General Finishes Expresso water based stain (1 coat) I used this because I wanted really dark. You can probably skip this one to get to a deep rich brown

-General Finishes Java gel stain (couple coats) or whatever color you choose.

-General Finishes Clear urethane gel topcoat in satin (couple coats).

4) Reassemble the doors and drawer fronts and check the color evenness. Touch up with more gel stain where needed and let dry. Add a coat or two more of the clear gel for super durability.

5) Replace hardware.

I was brazen because the cabinets were so cheap and ugly I had nothing to lose. I went kinda thick and didn't wipe everything off perfectly. And I didn't sand between coats. You will think the Expresso coat fades as it dries but it redarkens later. I wanted a very deep dark color, like melted dark chocolate. It is not perfect in tone, there is unevenness in the coloration, but you have to really look to see it. The feel of the finish is really wonderful, smooth and satiny.

Raised the pass through upper run, recycled 2 glass cabinets doors from DR, resurfaced the Corian and got some smashing hardware. It came out pretty great and the finish has held up fine for over a year now. Link to pictures below.

Couple other tips: Go to the bathroom first and tie up your hair. Keep an apron or old workshirt handy for the gel coats' work. Keep a phone nearby either in a baggie or wrapped in a clean rag. Skip these steps at your peril. Oh, and stir the can very well each time and spoon some into a disposable bowl - keeps the can from getting contaminated. Lastly, the socks or rags you use for poly gels should be disposed of carefully as they are flammable and volatile. Rule is to have a bucket of water and dispose into that as you go - then get rid of it all at the end per local ordinances.

RE: Expresso vs. Java. Expresso is blacker, Java is more a red brown, like mahogany furniture. My cabinets had such a faded orange cast, that putting on an Expresso coat after sanding seemed to yield a bit darker end product. Java alone wiped on makes a nice, rich Sienna brown color, but I was wanting it to be much darker than the Java alone would get me to. The other difference is of course that Expresso is water based, so an easier cleanup. Being a gel, the Java can go on much thicker. And the last clear coats provide the nice satin finish - stopping at Java has nowhere near the smoothness and sheen. I found it helped to hang the doors, etc after one clear coat so I could check the color. If I missed a spot, I'd do a Java touchup wipe there. Let dry. Then clear coat wipe.

BTW, with the Expresso, each coat dissolved the one prior - weird. So a second coat didn't seem worth it to me. And even with the Java, if you rub too hard when it is wet you end up removing the color. Letting it dry well between coats is essential. You have to figure about 5 days at one coat a day. I used my kitchen all the way through - who needs doors?

Good luck to you. It is a pain in some ways, but in my case it was really worth it. The worst is definitely the prep. Once the surfaces are ready to coat, it is really short work to glove up, slide a sock on your hand and wipe on a coat.

Here is a link that might be useful: staining project pix (3 sub albums: before during & after)


Celticmoon's gel stain instructions
clipped on: 10.21.2007 at 07:05 pm    last updated on: 10.21.2007 at 07:07 pm

Is my built-in fridge built in right???? (pix)

posted by: labradoodlelady on 10.14.2007 at 03:46 pm in Appliances Forum

I've got the Kitchenaid KSSO42FTX0. It has the custom overlay panels that match my cabinets. When I moved in a month ago, I was bugged by the fact that the fridge sticks out an inch and a half from the cabs over it, but it didn't seem a big deal. Until Thursday, that is, when I couldn't get my daughter's birthday cake into the fridge. And then I couldn't pull the ice bucket out without emptying most of ice out of it first.

I've gone through the installation manual, and *think* I know what's wrong, but I'd really appreciate everyone's input on this. It looks like they forgot to take into account the depth of the countertop when they framed out the refrigerator door opening. As a result, in order to keep the fridge from sticking out 3 or 4 inches from the cabinets above it, they had to jam it so far back into the opening that the doors can't open more than 110 degrees (rather than the full 130 degrees it's made for) without smashing into the edge of the granite.

I'm going to paste in photos of it below. I'd really appreciate everyone's input on this. If your built-in fridge doesn't stick out like mine does, I'd really love some photos to show my GC.

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

What do you all think?????



clipped on: 10.14.2007 at 11:50 pm    last updated on: 10.14.2007 at 11:52 pm

RE: Sources for reclained wood flooring? (Follow-Up #5)

posted by: floorguy on 08.27.2007 at 09:38 am in Flooring Forum

Ackerson-Stevens Inc.
Aged Woods Inc.
Albany Woodworks
American Heart Pine
Antique Wood Products of Lafayette
Appilacian Woods
Arrigoni Woods
Authentic Pine Floors
Berg & Berg
Birch Creek Millworks
Byrne Wood Floors
Carlisle Wide Plank
Castle Flooring
Centre Mills
Century Wood
Chestnut Specialists
Cochran's Lumber and millwork
East Teak
Elmwood Reclaimed Lumber
The Flooring Mill
Forest Floor
Foster Wood
Fulford Flooring
Fuzhou Fortune Reclaimed wood & Bamboo
Gammapar-Nydree Group
Genisis Innovations
Goodwin Heart Pine
Grizzly Forest Products
Guangzhou Fnen Wood
Harvest Timber
Henderson Corp
Heritage Wide Plank
Historic Floor Co.
Historic Woods
John Cox Lumber Co.
Longleaf Lumber
Manomin Resawn Timbers
Millworks of Idaho
Mountain Lumber Co.
Old American Lumber Co.
Old Wood LTD.
Our Heritage Preserved
Pioneer Millworks
Renick Millworks
Roosterhead Antique Pine
Southern Wood Floors
Tilo Natural Floors
Timeless Timber
Triton International Woods
Trout River Lumber Co.
Ua Wood Floors
Vicwood Industry
Vintage Lumber Co.
West Wind Hardwood
The Woods Co.

Those should keep you busy!!!


clipped on: 10.12.2007 at 03:40 pm    last updated on: 10.12.2007 at 03:41 pm

RE: A word to the wise - when you are all done... (Follow-Up #6)

posted by: bevangel on 10.11.2007 at 03:41 am in Kitchens Forum

loves2cook4six is absolutely right. A lot of people don't understand M&M Liens (a.k.a. "Mechanics and Materialmans Liens") and Lien waivers. The details of the laws regarding M&M liens vary from state to state but they have certain elements in common.

An M&M Lien is a document that any person who supplies goods or services for the improvement of real property may file with the court IF they have not been paid for those goods or services. The exact language you'll see on liens from different states vary but what all the legal mumbo-jumbo means is: "I (the lienholder) swear that I provided the following goods or services with a value of $x on such-and-such-a-date for the improvement of real property located at such-and-such-an-address and have not been paid." The M&M Lien protects the tradesman (lienholder) because it ensures that he will eventually get paid.

The reason why is because the lien is a "cloud" on the title of the real property. If the property owner tries to sell the property (or maybe get a loan based on it), the lien will be discovered when a title search is done. (Title insurance basically is a Title Company's way of telling a buyer or lender, "We have done a thorough search for any liens against this property and have not discovered any so if, at some time in the future, some pre-existing lien suddenly comes to light that we should have found but did not, we will pay it off for you so as to clear your title.") No one with any sense will purchase or make a loan on property with a clouded title so any lienholders will get paid when the property is sold or the homeowner tries to get a mortgage loan.

A property owner who has a lien filed against the property WHILE he owns it will have to clear the title before he can sell or get a loan. And he will have to do it without the help of a Title company because the title insurance he purchased when he first bought the property does not apply to liens that arise after that date.

In order to clear the clouded title the homeowner must do one of three things:

1) Produce the signed lien waiver he got back when he first paid for the goods or services (and has kept carefully filed away ever since.)
2) Pay the lienholder AGAIN - plus accumulated interest - in order to induce the lienholder to sign a lien waiver.
3) Go to court and PROVE that he already paid the lienholder or that the lien holder never did the work claimed (i.e., the lienholder filed a false lien.)

Most homeowners stuck with choosing between #2 and #3 probably just pay the lienholder again because that is cheaper than going to court...especially for "small jobs."

So, the Lien Waiver protects the homeowner from unscrupulous tradespeople who try to get paid twice.

gizmonike gave exactly the right advice. If a tradesperson, or a supplier refuses to sign a lien waiver, then don't pay them. There is no reason whatsoever for a tradesman to refuse to sign a lien waiver when he is paid ... except ignorance regarding lien law OR a desire to "stick it to the homeowner" later by filing a false lien! For an honest trademan, the lien waiver is nothing more than a receipt.

M&M Laws in the different state vary as to details so you should find out what they are in your state. Some variations are:
1) The time limit (after supplying the goods or services) for filing the M&M lien;
2) whether or not the property owner must be given Notice prior to the filing of the lien;
3) How long the lien remains in effect and, if not "in perpetuity", whether or not the lien can be renewed and the process for doing so; and
4) Who bears the burden of proof if a lien dispute goes to court. (In a civil dispute, the "burden of proof" is kind of like a presumption of guilt/innocence in a criminal case. Whichever party has the burden of proof is (sort of) presumed guilty, while the other party is (sort of) presumed innocent. It's harder to win if you have the "burden of proof.")

I hope the above general information is helpful but, for specific legal advice regarding liens in your state or haw they apply to the facts of your situation, talk to a lawyer licensed in your state.


clipped on: 10.11.2007 at 05:24 am    last updated on: 10.11.2007 at 05:24 am

RE: Igloochic or anyone else? How did you soundproof your floors? (Follow-Up #6)

posted by: jejvtr on 10.09.2007 at 09:51 am in Kitchens Forum

MLV or Mass loaded vinyl is one of the best ways to achieve sound deadening - it is 1/8" thick comes in rolls & is very heavy.

"Soundproofing" - has various levels if you will - different sounds can be deadened using different methods- framed sheet rocked walls provide an excellent conduit for sound to travel. My bro. in law re-did many of the recording studios @ Sony in NYC (funny now defunct) they used multiple layers of sheet rock w/varying dimensions and staggering seams 1/2" over 5/8" etc...

When doing our reno I spent much time researching how to achieve some level of "quiet" in areas - the more research I did the more complex it became. We had all plaster walls (Talk about great sound buffer!) & a few were replaced w/sheetrock
In any event here are a few things -
- If using sheet rock try to do several layers & stagger thickness & seems
- Wrap any pipes, ductwork, etc.. w/insulation
- IF you aren't staggering sheetrock use 5/8" sheet rock - it will give you a little more than 1/2" has greater integrity and is fireproofed - your contractor will try to sway you on this one....
- INSULATE - between ALL studs - using Roxul mineral wool insulation - used to be used for fire stopping - excellent sound reducing qualities -and fire barrier to boot! depending on where/how you purchase same cost as "pink" stuff - & it does come in batts don't use fiberglass reg insulation.

We used the roxul btwn joist in LR ceiling (which was plaster) then hung j-channel, put acoustical tape on the channel & 5/8" sheetrock was hung from the channel - the idea is to suspend it away from the joists which act as a conduit for sound

Ok - I'll get off my soap box

Good luck glad to "hear" someone is going the effort of doing some sound deadening - You'll never achieve total deadening - unless you are willing to give up windows, doorways, etc but you certainly can achieve less noise.

Any voids will continue to act as a gong of sorts to allow sound travel - so if you are going the efforts make sure all is covered.

Here is a link that might be useful: sound proofing materials


clipped on: 10.10.2007 at 05:22 am    last updated on: 10.10.2007 at 05:23 am

RE: Recessed Lighting Questions (Follow-Up #7)

posted by: chiefneil on 09.30.2006 at 12:22 am in Building a Home Forum

Must be a temporary hiccup with photobucket - the images are still available so far as I know. Here they are again anyway.

This first pick is the original white builder trim.

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

Here's the alzak trim instead of the white trim, all the lights are still on in this photo.

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting


Alzak trim on Juno (?) can lights
clipped on: 02.18.2007 at 05:50 am    last updated on: 02.18.2007 at 05:51 am