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RE: Our Pool Process - Pics (Follow-Up #12)

posted by: MiaOKC on 06.21.2013 at 09:09 pm in Pools & Spas Forum

Yay for progress. I went over to measure our steps and think you will be ok, still have to think there will be a little build up with the application of plaster. I took a pic of just the shallow end of our pool. Including steps it is 29 x 15. The three steps take about 41" out of that. Each one of ours is about 10" tall and 13" tread. Depth at floor of pool just off the step is about 42" from coping/deck/ground level. I think it is a very comfortable stair to traverse. I think it's most important each step is close to the same to keep from tripping up or down. Our IG hot tub has about a 9" deep step #1, which might be 4" of water, then down to the next step is 12" of step and water to get to. Always makes me stumble.


Stair height
clipped on: 06.25.2013 at 04:23 pm    last updated on: 06.25.2013 at 04:23 pm

RE: Help: Question about Where to End Backsplash Tile (Follow-Up #16)

posted by: bill_vincent on 01.05.2010 at 12:22 am in Kitchens Forum

Piaa-- sorry I didn't see your question before, but I think I've answered it anyway. :-)
Marita-- Nope! :-)



clipped on: 01.05.2010 at 11:28 am    last updated on: 01.05.2010 at 11:28 am

RE: Bill: Some Niche Questions- (Follow-Up #5)

posted by: bill_vincent on 12.24.2009 at 02:39 pm in Bathrooms Forum

Yes, it will, if you don't allow for that thickness in your calculations and are making your niches fall within your pattern!

That was my reason for this statement:

Pretty much what you want to do is figure out where yout tile coursing is going to land, and then set your framing, taking the thickness of the Durock and tile into account (also figuring about 1/16" for thinset and roll-on waterproofing. If you're going to use Kerdi, figure about 1/8" for thinset and WP). You then frame the niche (giving yourself a little play that can always be built out with thinset later)

I want to put a couple of glass shelves in the niche. How are they fastened to the sides?

What Laz said. Set your back and two side tiles up to the point where the shelf is going to go, and then set your shelf, putting just a bit of thinset on the side and back edges, and then set the shelf on top of the edges of the niche tiles, maybe using a small wedge or tooth pick under the back edge to give the shelf a slight pitch outward.




clipped on: 12.30.2009 at 06:02 pm    last updated on: 12.30.2009 at 06:02 pm

RE: Bill: Some Niche Questions- (Follow-Up #1)

posted by: bill_vincent on 12.23.2009 at 08:06 pm in Bathrooms Forum

1. Are all the Durock seams inside the niche taped & mudded like the rest of the alcove? How about the 4 outside edges (the perimeter)?

Being that it's all supposed to be waterproofed, and most waterproofing systems also double as crack suppression membranes, it's not really necessary, so long as the joints get filled in order to keep a continuous membrane, but it wouldn't hurt to tape them, either.

2. If the bottom should slant a bit for drainage, do you slant the 2 x 4 or build up the back of the tile with thinset?

Build up the back of the tile. It only has to be about 1/16" higher than the front.

3. I saw a step-by-step set of photos for installing a premade niche. Is there one for building from scratch?

Not really. Pretty much what you want to do is figure out where yout tile coursing is going to land, and then set your framing, taking the thickness of the Durock and tile into account (also figuring about 1/16" for thinset and roll-on waterproofing. If you're going to use Kerdi, figure about 1/8" for thinset and WP). You then frame the niche (giving yourself a little play that can always be built out with thinset later), Durock it, waterproof it, and tile it.

Piece of cake! :-)


clipped on: 12.30.2009 at 06:00 pm    last updated on: 12.30.2009 at 06:00 pm

I'm thankful for...a finished kitchen!!!!

posted by: traci29 on 11.29.2009 at 03:29 pm in Kitchens Forum

Wow, I can't believe I'm FINALLY posting a finished kitchen! :) It's actually about 99% finished since I haven't totally organized everything (but that's hidden - haha) and don't have window treatments, etc. (not sure if I'm going to put up blinds), but I'm just glad to have gotten to this point!!

Thanks to everyone on this forum for all the great advice and for simply listening to my vents at times! I've met such great people through here and hope to keep in touch! My only complaint is that while waiting for my kitchen to finally be done, I've had to endure looking at too many gorgeous finished kitchens and seeing things "I should have done" - haha :)

So...let's see, the process began in Sept 2008 (yep, you read that correctly!) and it's now almost 2010 - yikes, that looks even worse in print! :) The kitchen was part of a 1000 sq. ft. addition that included a master suite / kitchenette on the second level. I could go on and on about what went wrong (might be much easier to say what went right!), but I won't - it's too depressing :) The second floor is *almost* finished but the outside is supposed to have 2 decks and a balcony off the master, none of which have even begun, so who knows when everything will be complete. I'm just VERY thankful that at least the inside is approaching the point where I hopefully will not be dealing with anyone coming in and out and getting things dirty as soon as I clean! Well, other than my husband and dog of course - they do a good job of dirtying up the house all by themselves - haha!

I've tried to list the major details, since I know everyone on GW usually wants to see those, but if I've forgotten something or you have a question, feel free to ask :) So without further ado, here are the photos!

Here's the old kitchen "before":

And here's the old kitchen "after":

Sorry, couldn't resist - that really is the old kitchen, since the current kitchen is an entirely new addition to the house - so here it is:

With island pendants and plinth lights on:

An unstocked pantry :) It's actually a walk-in but hard to tell from photo

- Perimeter: Cambrian Black antique finish
- Island: Persian Pearl antique finish
- Crackle glass shelf on island: Custom by Advanced Glass Designs, Atlanta, GA
- Tile: Calcatta Gold 3 x 6 subway tile, honed, (less than $7/sq. ft.!!)
- Grout: Silver Grey StarQuartz QuartzLock
- Range: 48" gas American Range, 6 burners with grill
- Vent hood: Vent-a-Hood
- Dishwasher: LG (already had)
- Refrigerator: SubZero 48" (already had - just painted the panels to match the cabinets rather than getting stainless steel))
- Wine fridge: Vinotemp? (not sure, but I think this is the brand - we got it at Costco)
- Main sink: Lansen double bowl stainless steel 15 gauge
- Island sink: Ticor stainless steel 18 gauge
- Faucet, main sink: Industrial polished chrome pull-out faucet (no brand?!) - Ebay
- Faucet, island sink: Delta, polished chrome
Red oak, ebony stain (refinished all existing hardwood throughout house to match), satin finish poly
Walls (what little paint can be seen): SW Argos
Bar stools: "Modern Silver Bar Stool"
- Island pendants: Local Atlanta lighting designer - pendants are called "Droplet"
- Sink pendants: Mercury Glass Pendants from
- Island toekick lighting: Small LED plinth lights (more common in UK)
Cabinets (custom by local Atlanta cabinet maker):
- Perimeter: Shaker style maple wood, SW ??? (supposed to be Snowbound, but isn't - long story, but basically we found out months after that the paint isn't Snowbound, so have no idea what it actually is!)
- Island: Shaker style cherry wood, custom stain
Cabinet Hardware:
- European style long bar pulls, stainless steel
- Knobs: Hickory Hardware, stainless steel, Euro Contemporary 1.5 inches


clipped on: 11.29.2009 at 04:35 pm    last updated on: 11.29.2009 at 04:35 pm

RE: Favorite Drawer/Cupboard Organizer (Follow-Up #2)

posted by: circuspeanut on 10.24.2009 at 11:04 am in Kitchens Forum

I love my homemade cutlery dividers that fit right into the drawer -- $15 worth of 1/4" maple and some Titebond:
Image and video hosting by TinyPic

And my 8" wide pullout pantry bins between fridge and wall:
Image and video hosting by TinyPic
Image and video hosting by TinyPic


clipped on: 11.16.2009 at 09:05 am    last updated on: 11.16.2009 at 09:05 am

Does This Tile Mosaic Look Right To You -- Pictures

posted by: applepie61 on 10.30.2009 at 11:39 pm in Bathrooms Forum

Today the tile guy laid our floor in the guest bathroom and something is not right...the left side of the pattern does not match the right side. Specifically, where the ming green meets the basketweave on the top, bottom and left side, there's white thassos bricks. On the right side where the ming green meets the basketweave there's a combination of ming green dots and pieces of the thassos bricks. My eyes like to see symmetry and this doesn't look symmetrical to me. I think he could have moved the border in one row and this could have been avoided. Is it normal to do a pattern this way where the left side doesn't match the right? Am I being too picky? He hasn't finished the job so I imagine there's still time to make adjustments??? What are your thoughts?


clipped on: 11.08.2009 at 06:17 am    last updated on: 11.08.2009 at 06:17 am

RE: buehl, others: did I made a refrigerator carcass mistake? (Follow-Up #7)

posted by: buehl on 11.07.2009 at 12:00 am in Kitchens Forum

For cabinet-depth or standard-depth refrigerators only:

I know this is too late for CarolinesMom (sorry, I just saw this!) but the depth of the finished end panel should match the amount the refrigerator carcass/box extends from the back wall...regardless of where the countertop edge is.

The countertop depth only comes into play if (1) the refrigerator is adjacent to a counter and (2) the carcass of your refrigerator ends at less than 25.5" from the back wall. If so, they you'll have to pull the refrigerator forward to make the carcass flush with the countertop edge. The carcass must always be at least flush w/the things adjacent to it (walls, counters, tall cabinets, etc.) to allow the door(s) of the refrigerator to open fully.

In our case, for example, the countertop edge is 25.5" from the back wall but the finished end panels around our refrigerator are 26" deep...that's how far the carcass of the refrigerator ends from the back wall. The finished end panels stick out approx 1/2" past the countertop edge adjacent to them.

What you don't want is to have your end panels deeper than the refrigerator carcass...if it is, you won't be able to open your refrigerator door(s) fully, and possibly not even enough for everyday use (it depends on how the door hinges work). If they are deeper, simply trim then down b/f installing them (cut end against the wall!)


clipped on: 11.07.2009 at 06:05 am    last updated on: 11.07.2009 at 06:05 am

RE: Does a colorless/white glass subway tile exist? (Follow-Up #13)

posted by: theanimala on 10.31.2009 at 12:33 pm in Kitchens Forum

skoo, this is the only other picture I have at this time. The color doesn't show the best as it was taken at night but I think it gives a better idea. The grout looks bigger in these pics then they do in real life. We actually had the glass tiles placed right against each other so there is the slightest amount of grout (white unsanded) that fills in the tiny ridge.



clipped on: 10.31.2009 at 05:46 pm    last updated on: 10.31.2009 at 05:46 pm

RE: Does a colorless/white glass subway tile exist? (Follow-Up #1)

posted by: kitty_car on 10.06.2009 at 01:45 pm in Kitchens Forum

I ordered many samples of glass subway tiles trying to find a pure white as well. I found the subway tile color Blanco at "" to be one of the whitest. It comes in regular glass and frosted glass. Oh, and their prices were pretty great too.
Here is the Modwalls "Cloud" on the right and the Glass Mosaic Outlet "Blanco" on the left so you can see the difference.

Subway tile samples


clipped on: 10.30.2009 at 04:59 pm    last updated on: 10.30.2009 at 04:59 pm

RE: Beeswax on Soapstone? (Follow-Up #2)

posted by: florida_joshua on 10.29.2009 at 09:01 pm in Kitchens Forum

holland bowl mill Bee's oil

Clapham's salad bowl finish

Both great product one does cost more though.


clipped on: 10.30.2009 at 06:53 am    last updated on: 10.30.2009 at 06:53 am

RE: Read Me If You're New To GW Kitchens! [Help keep on Page 1] (Follow-Up #28)

posted by: hobokenkitchen on 10.22.2009 at 07:54 pm in Kitchens Forum


You do not necessarily need an online image hosting account to upload pictures to gardenweb.

Here's a way to do it without having to create an account.

1: go to

2: browse for your picture

3: select the size you want - I ususally choose the 'message board' option

4: Click 'UPLOAD NOW'

5: Select the top line of html code

6: paste the code straight into your gardenweb post.

Voila! Images on gardenweb with no online picture hosting account.

Hope this helps! : )


clipped on: 10.26.2009 at 08:25 am    last updated on: 10.26.2009 at 08:26 am

RE: It all makes sense cabinets are the wrong color!!!!! (Follow-Up #12)

posted by: traci29 on 10.19.2009 at 05:01 pm in Kitchens Forum

Here's the thing that really made me give more thought to the cabinet color. I recently came across smilingjudy's kitchen photos again and realized that her cabinets were Snowbound (I had forgotten that I saw hers when I initially chose the color!). I think the photos below illustrate the difference, even though my photo isn't the best due to being at night. Smilingjudy - I hope you don't mind me using your photo to illustrate! At least I now know I'm not losing my mind and it's not just lighting, etc :)

So...based on the photo and comparing the cabinet color to the ceiling color (which will be used on the window trim), do you think it is going to look completely weird?? Keep in mind that it looks slightly more apparent in person than in the photo. I hope I don't end up with a kitchen that looks like a patchwork quilt or something - haha! I like the effect in quilts, but not in my kitchen!

Smilingjudy's kitchen - notice the crisp white cabinets that match the white refrigerator:

My kitchen - notice how NOT white the cabinets are (can compare to the true white ceiling:


clipped on: 10.19.2009 at 05:40 pm    last updated on: 10.19.2009 at 05:40 pm

RE: Bar-style pulls: Sizing guidelines? Pictures? (Follow-Up #1)

posted by: theanimala on 10.02.2009 at 01:47 pm in Kitchens Forum

We did the same thing, all horizontal, with all different sizes. We tried to average out size so that the pull would take up 3/4 of the door. Depending on the size of the door and the size of the pull available we had to so slightly lower or larger, but in the end we are very pleased with the look. We have some really long ones on some 36" drawers, which really look sharp.

Pic of unfinished kitchen, but with pulls on.



clipped on: 10.02.2009 at 10:33 pm    last updated on: 10.02.2009 at 10:34 pm

Sharb-inspired Pantry Done!

posted by: buehl on 11.04.2008 at 10:52 pm in Kitchens Forum

We finally finished our DIY Sharb-inspired pantry! (Sorry folks, no chandelier!)

Here are the pics....

Come visit my pantry...

Pantry Entrance...

The door opens...

Entering the pantry...

The left side...

The left side has 15" deep shelves and holds, top-to-bottom, cereals, snacks & drinks, gluten-free foods, cookbooks & appliance manuals, two bins--one for yams & one for white potatoes, and toaster oven & coffeemaker on the floor. (Small appliance shelf now holds cookbooks. Toaster Oven & coffee maker are now on the floor.)

Left Side, top

Left Side, middle

Left Side, bottom/floor

The right side...

The right side has 12" deep shelves and holds, top-to-bottom, paper towels, baking/cooking supplies (next 3 shelves), small appliances, more baking supplies. The floor has a stool & paper plates & plastic cups. My extra oven racks are leaning against the far right wall. Eventually, we will be mounting our broom & dustpan there. (Don't know where the extra oven racks will go.)

Right Side, top half

Right Side, bottom half


clipped on: 09.29.2009 at 04:20 pm    last updated on: 09.29.2009 at 04:20 pm

Modern Bathrooms in New York City

posted by: scottielee on 09.02.2009 at 07:16 pm in Bathrooms Forum

thanks to everyone here for generously sharing their renovating experiences, ideas, and wonderful pictures. here are some shots of my two bathrooms renovated last year...better late than never right ^_^

main bath

guest bath

Main Bath
Tub: Kohler Tea-for-Two Cast Iron Whirlpool K-856-RH-0
Tub Faucet: Hansgrohe Axor Starck X Tub Filler and Handshower 10402001
Toilet: Duravit Starck 1 0233090000
Vanity: Porcher Ovale 89040 with Statuary White Honed Marble Top
Lavatory Basin: Porcher Cirque
Lavatory Faucet: Grohe Atrio Single 32006OOO
Cabinets: Robern Flat Beveled Mirrored Door Cabinets MFC1628
Mirror: Robern RE:Flect Arch Mirror RF2032ARC
Lighting: Flos Romeo Babe Soft Wall Lamps
Towel Bars: Smedbo Home
Wall: Bisazza Hearts White Glass Tiles
Floor: Casa Dolce Casa/Casamood Neutra Silver Porcelain Tiles

Guest Bath
Shower Enclosure: Kohler Arica Round Shower Enclosure K-705250-L-SH and Kohler Memoirs Shower Receptor K-9569-0
Shower: Grohe Aquatower 2000 27018OOO
Toilet: Toto Soiree MS964214CFG
Lavatory: Porcher Chipperfield Pedestal Lavatory Kit 24228
Lavatory Faucet: Grohe Atrio High 20069OOO
Mirror: Flos Linea Classic Oval
Lighting: Flos Romeo Babe W Wall Lamps
Towel Bars: Blomus Duo Polished
Wall: Bisazza Petit Four Blu Glass Tiles
Floor: Bisazza Righe Blu Glass Tiles


clipped on: 09.27.2009 at 08:15 am    last updated on: 09.27.2009 at 08:16 am

Stone Information and Advice (& Checklists)

posted by: buehl on 04.14.2008 at 02:56 am in Kitchens Forum

First off, I want to give a big thank-you to StoneGirl, Kevin, Joshua, Mimi, and others (past and current) on this forum who have given us many words of wisdom concerning stone countertops.

I've tried to compile everything I saved over the past 8 months that I've been on this Forum. Most of it was taken from a write-up by StoneGirl (Natural stone primer/granite 101); other threads and sources were used as well.

So...if the experts could review the information I've compiled below and send me comments (here or via email), I will talk to StarPooh about getting this on the FAQ.

Stone Information, Advice, and Checklists:

In an industry that has no set standards, there are many unscrupulous people trying to palm themselves off as fabricators. There are also a number of people with odd agendas trying to spread ill rumors about natural stone and propagate some very confusing and contradictory information. This is my small attempt at shedding a little light on the subject.

Slab Selection:

On the selection of the actual stone slabs - When you go to the slab yard to choose slabs for your kitchen, there are a few things you need to take note of:

  • Surface finish: The finish - be it polished, honed, flamed antiqued, or brushed, should be even. There should be no spots that have obvious machine marks, scratches, or other man made marks. You can judge by the crystal and vein pattern of the stone if the marks you see are man-made or naturally occurring. It is true that not all minerals will finish evenly and if you look at an angle on a polished slab with a larger crystal pattern, you can clearly see this. Tropic Brown would be a good example here. The black spots will not polish near as shiny as the brown ones and this will be very obvious on an unresined slab when looking at an acute angle against the light. The black specks will show as duller marks. The slab will feel smooth and appear shiny if seen from above, though. This effect will not be as pronounced on a resined slab.

    Bottom line when judging the quality of a surface finish: Look for unnatural appearing marks. If there are any on the face of the slab, it is not desirable. They might well be on the extreme edges, but this is normal and a result of the slab manufacturing process.

  • Mesh backing: Some slabs have a mesh backing. This was done at the plant where the slabs were finished. This backing adds support to brittle materials or materials with excessive veining or fissures. A number of exotic stones will have this. This does not necessarily make the material one of inferior quality, though. Quite often, these slabs will require special care in fabrication and transport, so be prepared for the fabricator to charge accordingly. If you are unsure about the slabs, ask your fabricator what his opinion of the material is.
  • Cracks and fissures: Yes - some slabs might have them. One could have quite the discussion on whether that line on the slab could be one or the other, so I'll try to explain it a little.

    • Fissures are naturally occurring features in stone. They will appear as little lines in the surface of the slabs (very visible in a material like Verde Peacock) and could even be of a different color than the majority of the stone (think of those crazed white lines sometimes appearing in Antique Brown). Sometimes they could be fused like in Antique Brown and other times they could be open, as is the case in the Verde Peacock example. They could often also go right through the body of the slab like in Crema Marfil, for instance. If you look at the light reflection across a fissure, you will never see a break - i.e., there will be no change in the plane on either side of a fissure.
    • A crack on the other hand is a problem... If you look at the slab at an oblique angle in the light, you will note the reflection of the shine on the surface of the stone. A crack will appear as a definite line through the reflection and the reflection will have a different appearance on either side of the line - there will be a break in the plane. Reject slabs like this. One could still work around fissures. Cracks are a whole other can of worms.
    • Resined slabs: The resin gets applied prior to the slabs being polished. Most of the resin then gets ground off in the polishing process. You should not be able to see just by looking at the surface of a slab whether it was resined or not. If you look at the rough sides of the slab, though, you will see some drippy shiny marks, almost like varnish drips. This should be the only indication that the slab is resined. There should never be a film or layer on the face of the stone. With extremely porous stones, the resining will alleviate, but not totally eliminate absorption issues and sealer could still be required. Lady's dream is an example. This material is always resined, but still absorbs liquids and requires sealer.
    • Test the material you have selected for absorption issues regardless - it is always best to know what your stone is capable of and to be prepared for any issues that might arise. Some stones indeed do not require sealer - be they resined or not. Baltic Brown would be an example here. It will not absorb one iota of anything, but it is still resined to eliminate a flaking issue.

Tests (especially for Absolute Black) (using a sample of YOUR slab):

  • To verify you have true AB and not dyed: Clean with denatured alcohol and rub marble polishing powder on the face. (Get denatured alcohol at Home Depot in the paint department)
  • Lemon Juice or better yet some Muratic Acid: will quickly show if the stone has alot of calcium content and will end up getting etched. This is usually chinese stone, not indian.
  • Acetone: The Dying usually is done on the same chinese stone. like the others said, acetone on a rag will reveal any dye that has been applied
  • Chips: Using something very hard & metalhit the granite sharply & hard on edges to see if it chips, breaks, or cracks


  • Before the templaters get there...
    • Make sure you have a pretty good idea of your faucet layout--where you want the holes drilled for all the fixtures and do a test mock up to make sure you have accounted for sufficient clearances between each fixture.
    • Be sure you test your faucet for clearances not just between each fixture, but also between the faucet and the wall behind the faucet (if there is one). You need to be sure the handle will function properly.
    • Make sure that the cabinets are totally level (not out by more than 1/8") before the counter installers come in.
    • Check how close they should come to a stove and make sure the stove sits up higher than the counter.
    • Make sure they have the sink/faucet templates to work from.
    • Make sure have your garbage disposal air switch on hand or know the diameter

  • If you are not putting in a backsplash, tell them
  • Double check the template. Make sure that the measurements are reasonable. Measure the opening for the range.
  • Seam Placement: Yet another kettle of fish (or can of worms, depending on how you look at it, I guess!) Seam placement is ultimately at the discretion of the fabricator. I know it is not a really popular point of view, but that is just the way it is. There really is more to deciding where the seam would go than just the size of the slab or where the seam would look best in the kitchen.

    Most stone installations will have seams. They are unavoidable in medium or large sized kitchens. One hallmark of a good fabricator is that they will keep the seams to a minimum. It seems that a good book could be written about seams, their quality, and their placementand still you will have some information that will be omitted! For something as seemingly simple as joining two pieces of stone, seams have evolved into their own universe of complexity far beyond what anybody should have fair cause to expect!

  • Factors determining seam placement:
    • The slab: size, color, veining, structure (fissures, strength of the material an other characteristics of the stone)
    • Transport to the job site: Will the fabricated pieces fit on whatever vehicle and A-frames he has available
    • Access to the job site: Is the house on stilts? (common in coastal areas) How will the installers get the pieces to where they need to go? Will the tops fit in the service elevator if the apartment is on the 10th floor? Do the installers need to turn tight corners to get to the kitchen? There could be 101 factors that will influence seam placement here alone.
    • Placement and size of undermount (or other) cut-outs. Some fabricators like to put seams in undermount sinks, some do not. We, for instance will do it if absolutely necessary, and have done so with great success, but will not do so as general practice. We do like to put seams in the middle of drop-in appliances and cut-outs and this is a great choice for appearances and ease of installation.
    • Location of the cabinets: Do the pieces need to go in between tall cabinets with finished sides? Do the pieces need to slide in under appliance garages or other cabinetry? How far do the upper cabinets hang over? Is there enough clearance between the vent hood and other cabinets? Again the possibilities are endless and would depend on each individual kitchen lay-out and - ultimately -
    • Install-ability of the fabricated pieces: Will that odd angle hold up to being moved and turned around to get on the peninsula if there is no seam in it? Will the extra large sink cut-out stay intact if we hold the piece flat and at a 45 degree angle to slide it in between those two tall towers? Again, 1,001 combinations of cabinetry and material choices will come into play on this question.

    You can ask your fabricator to put a seam at a certain location and most likely he will oblige, but if he disagrees with you, it is not (always) out of spite or laziness. Check on your fabricator's seams by going to actual kitchens he has installed. Do not trust what you see in a showroom as sole testament to your fabricator's ability to do seams.

    With modern glues and seaming methods, a seam could successfully be put anywhere in an installation without compromising the strength or integrity of the stone. If a seam is done well, there is - in theory - no "wrong" location for it. A reputable fabricator will also try to keep the number of seams in any installation to a minimum. It is not acceptable, for instance to have a seam in each corner, or at each point where the counter changes direction, like on an angled peninsula.

    Long or unusually large pieces are often done if they can fit in the constraints of a slab. Slabs as a rule of thumb will average at about 110"x65". There are bigger slabs and quite often smaller ones too. Check with the fabricator or the slab yard. They will be more than happy to tell you the different sizes of slabs they have available. Note, though, that the larger the slabs, the smaller the selection of possible colors. Slab sizes would depend in part on the capabilities of the quarry, integrity of the material or the capabilities of the machinery at the finishing plant. We have had slabs as wide as 75" and as long as 130" before, but those are monsters and not always readily available.

  • Generally, it is not a good idea to seam over a DW because there's no support for the granite, and anything heavy placed at or near the seam would stress the stone, possibly breaking it.
  • Rodding is another issue where a tremendous amount of mis-information and scary stories exist: The main purpose for rodding stone would be to add integrity to the material around cut-outs. This is primarily for transport and installation and serves no real purpose once the stone is secured and fully supported on the cabinets. It would also depend on the material. A fabricator would be more likely to rod Ubatuba than he would Black Galaxy, for instance. The flaky and delicate materials prone to fissures would be prime candidates for rodding. Rodding is basically when a fabricator cuts slots in the back of the stone and embeds steel or fiberglass rods with epoxy in the slots in the stone. You will not see this from the top or front of the installation. This is an "insurance policy" created by the fabricator to make sure that the stone tops make it to your cabinets all in one piece
  • Edges: The more rounded an edge is, the more stable it would be. Sharp, flat edges are prone to chipping under the right (or rather wrong) circumstances. Demi or full bullnose edges would almost entirely eliminate this issue. A properly milled and polished edge will be stable and durable regardless of the profile, though. My guess at why ogee and stacked edges are not more prevalent would be purely because of cost considerations. Edge pricing is determined by the amount of work needed to create it. The more intricate edge profiles also require an exponentially larger skill set and more time to perfect. The ogee edge is a very elegant edge and can be used to great effect, but could easily look overdone if it is used everywhere. We often advise our clients to combine edges for greater impact - i.e., eased edge on all work surfaces, and ogee on the island to emphasize the cabinetry or unusual shape.
    Edge profiles are largely dependent on what you like and can afford. There is no real pro or con for regular or laminated edges. They all have their place in the design world. Check with your fabricator what their capabilities and pricing are. Look at actual kitchens and ask for references.


  • Seams:
    One hallmark of a good fabricator is that they will keep the seams to a minimum [StoneGirl]

    • A generic good quality seam should have the following characteristics:
      • It should be flat. According to the Marble Institute of America (MIA) a minimal amount of lippage is acceptable (1/32"), but conscientious fabricators all strive for a perfectly flat and smooth joint.
      • It should be narrow - as in smaller than 1/16". (I think the MIA stipulates no larger than 1/8", but that is pushing it - and only if the fabricator bevels the edges of the seam, almost similar to the edge of a stone tile. This is, thank goodness, not a standard practice any more!)
      • The color on either side of the seam should match as closely as possible. On regularly patterned stones like Ubatuba for example - there should be no variation. On stones with variation in colors or veins, the match should be made as close as was humanly possible.
      • Vein direction should flow. The MIA suggests a single direction of vein flow, but it is acceptable IF DISCUSSED WITH THE CLIENT to change vein direction on a seam if no other option is available. This would happen in book matched slabs - you will have a "butterfly" seam in this case. In other cases, the fabricator could put a miter seam in a corner and change vein direction 90 degrees. This is usually done with extremely linear veining like Bamboo Green, for example, but this is something that should be discussed with the fabricator and agreed upon by the client.
      • The seam on the finished edge of the stone should NOT dip in and create a divot in the edge. When you run your fingers over the edge, you should not be able to feel the location of the seam at all.
      • The thickness of the slabs on either side of the seam should be equal (or feathered out so that there is no discernible difference)
      • The glue in the seam should be of a color that matches the stone as closely as possible. Glue joints that are too light or too dark will show up something terrible. The idea behind tinting the glue is to try to make the seam "disappear" or something relatively close to it

  • Checklist:
    • Check the seams for evenness and smoothness.
      • Make sure that the seams are neat and clean.
      • Make sure that the seams are not obvious.
      • Make sure the seams are butted tight
      • Make sure that there are no scratches, pits, or cracks

    • If sealing is necessary (not all granites need to be sealed):
      • Make sure that the granite has been sealed
      • If more than one application of sealer was applied, ask how long they waited between applications
      • Ask which sealer has been used on the granite.

    • Make sure the sink reveal is consistent all the away around
    • Check the gap of the granite at the wall junctions.
    • Check for inconsistent overhangs from the counter edges
    • Check for chips. These can be filled.
    • Make sure the top drawers open & close
    • Make sure that you can open & close your dishwasher
    • Make sure the stove sits up higher than the counter
    • Make sure that you have the appropriate clearances for your appliances
    • Check the edge all around, a good edge should have the following characteristics:
      • Shine: The edge polish should match the top polish in depth and clarity. The edge should not be milky, dull, or waxy.
      • The edge should not have "waves". Eyeball along the edge. A good edge should have a mirror like reflection and be fairly flat. Waves that you can see or feel are not a good thing.
      • The aris (very top of the edge) should be crisp and straight, even on a bullnose edge. Once again you can see this by eyeballing along the very top end of the edge profile. A wavy, dippy aris is poor craftsmanship.
      • A good edge will have a consistent profile. It will not be larger in some spots or smaller in others.
      • A good edge should also have NO tooling lines. These will be fine lighter/white lines running along the edge. This is a mark of a poor edge polish, of a CNC machine that is not set correctly, and a lack of hand finishing. This is common when a company has only mechanical fabrication (i.e., CNC machines or line polishers) and no skilled hand fabricators to finish the work properly.

    • Run your hands around the entire laminated edge of yor counters to make sure they are smooth
    • Check surrounding walls & cabinets for damage

Miscellaneous Information:

  • More than all the above and below, though, is to be present for both the templating as well as having the templates placed on your slabs at the fabricator's
    If you canot be there, then have a lengthy conversation about seam placement, ways to match the movement, and ways to color-match the counters that will be joined at the seam
  • Find a fabricator who is a member of the SFA
  • When they polish your stone for you don't let them wax it. It will look terrible in 2 months when the wax wears off.
  • Don't use the Magic Eraser on granite--especially AB
  • Any slab with more fill (resin) than stone is certainly a no-no!!
  • When you do check for scratches, have overhead lighting shining down so scratches are easier to see
  • Don't let them do cutouts in place (granite dust becomes a major issue)
  • Granite dust can be a problem...some have heard of SS appliances & hoods damaged by the dust, others have heard of drawer glides being ruined by the dust
  • If you have wood floors--especially if you're in the process of staining or finishing them--make sure that they don't spill or drip granite sealer on the wood floors. Apparently the sealer interferes with the stain or finish process.
  • Suggested Prep for Installation:
    • Remove any drawers and pullouts beneath any sections that will be cut or drilled onsite, e.g., sink cutouts and/or faucet, soap dispenser, air gap, instant hot etc. holes, cooktop cutouts.
    • Then just cover the glides themselves with a few layers of blue painter's tape (or some combo of plastic wrap and tape)
    • If you make sure to cover the top of the glides and attach some of the tape to the cab wall as well (to form sort of a seal)and cover the rest of the glides completely with tape, you should be fine.
    • Usually the fabricators will have someone holding a vacuum hose right at the spot where they are drilling or cutting, so very little granite dust should be landing on the glides. What little dust escapes the vacuum will be blocked by the layer(s) of tape.
    • When done w/installation, remove the tape and use a DustBuster (or similar) on all the cabinets and glides

  • Countertop Support:
    • If your granite is 2 cm thick, then there can be no more then 6" of of unsupported span with a 5/8" subtop
    • If your granite is 3 cm thick, then there can be no more then 10" of unsupported span - no subtop required
    • If you need support, the to determine your corbel dimensions:
    • Thickness of Stone - Dimension of Unsupported Span = Corbel Dimensino
    • i.e., an 18" total overhang in 2 cm would require a 12" corbe; the same overhang in 3 cm would require an 8" corbel


clipped on: 09.14.2009 at 12:55 pm    last updated on: 09.14.2009 at 12:55 pm

Pantry photos/ pics of pantries

posted by: rhome410 on 02.03.2009 at 02:58 pm in Kitchens Forum

There are some great pantry threads that will eventually be lost and Starpooh suggested I post links here so that others can post and, hopefully, we'll keep some of these resources alive for those planning pantries in the future. (She pointed out that threads 'live' longer here than on the discussions side of the forum.) There is one thread, in particular, that has awesome photos of pantry interiors that I can open through a link I've saved, but if anyone posts on it, it doesn't become current again. Starpooh has put it in .pdf form and it is too large to download here, so I've linked it below.

Here is another walk-in pantry thread with helpful shelf spacing guidelines/recommendations:

There is also a previous thread with photos of closet style pantries, which I'm still trying to track down. Of course, photos of pantry cabs will be helpful to people, too.

Anyway, here's hoping people will start showing off their pantries here, so we form a pantry album for others to consult.

Here is a link that might be useful: Thread as .pdf: Anyone Willing to Share the Inside of their Pantry?


clipped on: 09.09.2009 at 07:14 am    last updated on: 09.09.2009 at 07:14 am

BLING! Bathroom done... Lots of photos.

posted by: pharaoh on 11.30.2008 at 12:14 am in Bathrooms Forum

Here is my long awaited DIY Bathroom Remodel. We are calling this 99% finished :)

Original Finishes 60s cultured marble counter, 70s metallic wallpaper, 80s peel-n-stick vinyl tiles, no shower

My main Design aesthetic was BLING!

Finishes Polished, high gloss, clean
Primary Shapes Square and sharp
Colors Metallic, white, transparent, brown
Materials Wood, marble, chrome, glass, crystal

Duration 1 year to design, plan, shop and import
6 months from demolition to completion

List of projects
1. Vanity Floating vanity made from bubinga, an African rosewood. Finishes in gloss waterlox varnish
2. Mirror frame Bubinga
3. Shower panels Bookmatched Bubinga with 5 coats of marine varnish
4. Shower doors Hydroslide from CRL, 3/8" starphire glass
5. Shower panel Wood and chrome (ebay)
6. Toilet - Ebay
7. Shower wall and bathroom floor Pure white Sivec (Macedonia) marble 18x18 (over Schluter ditra/kerdi)
8. Bathroom walls- Custom made Starphire glass tiles 4"x18"
9. Tile inserts Swarovski 1"x1" Foiled crystals
10. Sink Marble vessel sink
11. Faucet Chrome waterfall vessel faucet
12. Towel bar, tissue holder Chrome Danze Sirius
13. Sconces Candice Olsen Chrome/Crystal Sconce
14. Chandelier Chrome Snowflake with Swarovski crystal
15. Countertop " Tempered starphire glass with 4" chrome standoffs
16. Window Aluminium double glazed with laminated privacy glass
17. Door Laminated privacy glass
18. Door lever Chrome Omnia
19. LED lighting - under the floating vanity and edge lit glass wall tile




Finally, the LED mood lighting (cycling color)


clipped on: 09.07.2009 at 12:03 pm    last updated on: 09.07.2009 at 12:03 pm

RE: Please show me your crown molding and shaker cabinets (Follow-Up #1)

posted by: nhbaskets on 09.03.2009 at 08:25 pm in Kitchens Forum

Our crown molding has a straight profile. I can take a close up picture if you're interested.


clipped on: 09.04.2009 at 11:17 am    last updated on: 09.04.2009 at 11:17 am

Traditional Modern Pearl White Kitchen in New York City

posted by: scottielee on 07.14.2009 at 10:58 pm in Kitchens Forum

thanks to everyone here for generously sharing their renovating experiences, ideas, and wonderful pictures. here are some shots of my little kitchen renovated last year...better late than never right ^_^

Cabinets: Omega Signature, Maple in Parisian Pearl
Countertop: Statuary White Honed Marble
Islandtop: Craft-Art Brazilian Cherry
Backsplash: Bisazza Damasco Bianco Glass Tiles
Floor: Casa Dolce Casa/Casamood Neutra Silver Porcelain Tiles
Range: Wolf Duel Fuel DF304
Hood: Wolf Pro Wall PW302718
Dishwasher: Miele LaPerla G2830SCi/SS
Refridgerator; GE Monogram
Sink: Franke Kubus KBX-110-21
Faucet: Grohe Ladylux Cafe 33755SDO
Hardware: Bouvet Knobs 5201-25 and Bouvet Drop Pulls 5002-10 & 5008-18
Pendants: Flos Fucsia 1
Undercabinet Lighting: Kichler 10560WH & 10566WH
Stools: Emeco Kong and Emeco Stool


clipped on: 08.30.2009 at 01:51 pm    last updated on: 08.30.2009 at 01:51 pm