Clippings by rdw829

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Storage on back of cab doors--my solution

posted by: Bellsmom on 07.01.2012 at 01:44 pm in Kitchens Forum

Storage in my smallish kitchen is limited, even though it is immensely better than it was before remodel. In early June I posted a query about how to store small flat items on the backs of cabinet doors. Melaska and others helped me with ideas. I promised to post what I decided to do.

This is sort of a tempest in a teapot sort of post, but might be useful to someone.

I decided the strips were too inflexible and found these metal hooks with clear bases by Command. They worked perfectly.

The place I really wanted them was on the back of the sink door next to the microwave. I wanted to hang the plastic lids that I use to cover bowls and plates in the MW so the lids would be handy. This is the way it works:

These are definite keepers. The lids store awkwardly in drawers and perfectly here.

Then I decided to try some on the back of the super susan door which is next to the range. Hanging these small flat objects there saves me half a drawer's worth of prime space next to the range. The susan is used to store seldom used appliances like the sous vide, blender, mixer, and slow cooker. The door is not opened often, and the objects don't get in the way of removing the appliances.

I'm not certain I'll keep the hooks on the back of the susan door, but it is nice to have those things so handy to the range. And at only $1 per hook, no big deal. They come off easily without marring the finish.


clipped on: 07.02.2012 at 09:11 am    last updated on: 07.02.2012 at 09:12 am

RE: Horizontal or vertical outlets/switches with subway tile? (Follow-Up #6)

posted by: nini804 on 06.25.2012 at 10:12 pm in Kitchens Forum

We did horizontal...
Photobucket Pictures, Images and Photos


clipped on: 06.27.2012 at 09:57 pm    last updated on: 06.27.2012 at 09:58 pm

RE: Granite fabricator recommendations around greater Philly area (Follow-Up #12)

posted by: rdw829 on 06.27.2012 at 04:25 pm in Kitchens Forum

Ozone - how was yuour experience with Colonial?

I have been warned to stay away from them. We have also looked at Top Granite in KOP, and based on this thread, I was planning to contact Impreial - and possibly Gravena in Manayunk, which I saw mentioned elsewhere and which a KD friend recommended.

Any other recs in the suburban Philly / Montgomery County area?


clipped on: 06.27.2012 at 04:33 pm    last updated on: 06.27.2012 at 04:33 pm

Dare I ask? New and anxious :)

posted by: precious11 on 05.16.2012 at 10:01 am in Kitchens Forum

Hi fellow GWers! I am one of the-many- lurkers that have been drooling over your beautiful, gorgeous, awe-inspiring kitchens, waiting anxiously with some of you to have your cabinets/granite/soapstone/backsplash delivered, previewed layouts and reflected/ suffered/ dreamed with you in dire times for a while now. I think this forum is fantastic, such an enormous source of information, but more importantly, such a wonderful group of people!! It is amazing what you people can and will do for each other, how involved you get and how great the relationships that form on this forum are- truly inspiring!

As I am -finally!!- starting to consider my kitchen renovation, I cannot wait to become one of you, to have you on my side and use your help and guidance through what will certainly become one of the most grueling tasks so far for DH and I. Here is a brief story : we purchased late last year our beautiful house with fantastic potential, but, well...just potential for now. The kitchen is an 80's "big white", black outdated appliances, brass knobs everywhere, saggy doors and moldy inside cabinets. Ah, and let's not forget the best part: the three tier Kohler cast iron sink, the one that makes you forever happy when you finally take out and firmly hit with the appropriate size hammer- just to get it out of your system- for good :)

Here is the BIG question though: what should I expect in terms of cost? Yes, I know the prices vary widely, but would it be terribly inappropriate for me to ask some of you with full renovation of kitchens about how much you paid to get it? I do apologize if I am too forward with this, but I am really trying to get an idea on what to expect. We do have some money set aside but I have a feeling that it may be too low. Ours will be a fairly large kitchen, with an island- no prep sink, but will involve bringing the kitchen to the studs, new wood floors, granite, cabinets, sink. I plan on using drawers everywhere and little to no uppers- I like the look of open shelves and beautiful, textured wallpaper. Anyone willing to share their costs or at least help me understand what I might expect? Oh, and I do not need fancy cabinets or corbels, just solid oak or maple, preferably painted..

Please forgive me if I am confusing some of you- I know it is hard to approximate, I am just looking for some financial info from the people that have already been there and had such fantastic results *sigh*

Big cyber hugs to you all!! ((( )))



clipped on: 06.27.2012 at 11:20 am    last updated on: 06.27.2012 at 11:27 am

Appliance research frustration--need basic appliance help

posted by: luvn2oxfrd on 01.10.2011 at 05:27 pm in Appliances Forum

I think I have a case of the over-researched-blues.

We are in the process of a major kitchen remodel on a limited budget. I need basic appliances that are durable, functional, and affordable. My dream for professional grade is in the distant future when the kids are grown and my husband has a better paying job.

My style of cooking is fast week night meals, occasional holiday cooking for the extended family and recreational baking with the kids. I have only ever had builder's grade appliances and have had no issues.

Now that I can choose my own appliances, however, I am running into trouble. I would like to keep the refrigerator, range, microwave and dishwasher in the $3500-4500 range. I have room in the budget for a few fun "extras", but nothing too exorbitant. A counter depth fridge would be nice, but I don't think I want to sacrifice interior fridge capacity. I don't need my dishwasher to be silent, but I would like it to be sleek looking with the controls on top. I dream of a dual fuel range, but don't know if it is necessary. A double oven range would be nice, but I like a gas cooktop.

And what about mixing brands? For simplicity, I would like to keep everything the same brand, but if, for example, KA is good at refrigerators, then their ranges stink.

Where do you start?

Here are the appliances I thought I wanted until I did too much research for my own good. Any insight would be greatly appreciated:

Range: KitchenAid KDRS505XSS
Microwave: KitchenAid KHMS2040WSS Stainless Steel
Refrigerator: KitchenAid KBFS25EWMS Monochromatic Stainless Steel
Dishwasher: Bosch SHX4AP05UC Stainless Steel


clipped on: 06.25.2012 at 02:21 pm    last updated on: 06.25.2012 at 02:21 pm

Today is the is finished!! (pic heavy)

posted by: boschboy on 04.29.2012 at 03:55 pm in Kitchens Forum

This is a day I thought would never get here. I am finally ready to show off the finished kitchen. I have been planning this for almost 2 years and I read so many different posts on GW that gave such great advice. You may not know it, but the finished kitchen is a conglomeration of your ideas. THANKS!!

I began the planning phase of the remodel about two years ago. This is a DIY kitchen and I did not want to make too many modifications to the existing layout. Overall it was very usable, it just needed some updates. I think you will agree when you see the before pictures below.

The biggest changes were moving the double oven from one side of the kitchen to the other, installing a vent hood and extending the length of the island. Of course new cabinets and granite countertops were a requirement.

We did purchase our appliances 1 year before we started the remodel. We had a budget and replacing the leaking DW and electric coil cooktop were a must. My induction cooktop is irreplaceable. I figured I might as well keep going so we swapped the side by side fridge for a french door version.

We ordered our cabinets in January. What a pain to deal with small independent stores that did not want to give us a quote once they learned we would be installing them ourselves. Oh well, their loss not mine. We ended up ordering from Home Depot and had a great time working with their kitchen designer. We learned a lot from her and she gave us some new ideas about all the little extras I had not thought about. We have used every wasted space.

I will say that the cabinet install, plumbing changes, moving electrical lines, installing speakers in the ceiling and addition of a vent pipe to the outside went easier than I could have expected. It was fun to come home every night with a goal of something that needed to be completed or to spend an entire weekend working on a larger change. The sense of accomplishment was great. I miss that time already. Oh well, enough of the background. Below are the details.

Cabinets: Kraftmaid Holace Cherry Square with Kaffe finish and all plywood upgrade.

Countertop: Juparana Arandis granite

Sink: Krauss Stainless Farmhouse double sink with faucet

Pulls: Cool Knobs and Pulls #8000 series in various lengths

Backsplash: 2x4 Chiaro Mosaic (Lowes) We made the design over the cooktop from chair rail and standard 2.5x9 moldings.

Window Treatments: Restoration Hardware clearance center

Cooktop: Bosch 36" induction 800 series

Vent Hood: Bosch 36" 800 series

Refrigerator: Bosch Stainless French Door

Microwave: Kenmore Elite built in

Double Oven: KitchenAid double convection

Flooring: Somerset Country Collection Hand Scraped Buttercup

Enough of the are some pics.
Some before shots. This seems so long ago.

Double oven will be moving to where the desk is located.Photobucket

Another view


How is this for a change?

Microwave built into the island. I do not use it very much so it is the perfect spot.

Love the spice pull outs.

Mosaic behind the cooktop we made ourselves.




The farmhouse sink.


Much more usable than the desk.

Under cabinet lighting is a must. It makes the darkest areas shine.

Just a cool shot


And the beautiful Juparana Arandis


And can't forget my boys who supervised the entire project.


clipped on: 05.23.2012 at 10:08 pm    last updated on: 05.23.2012 at 10:09 pm

RE: Recommendations for vinyl replacement windows (Follow-Up #11)

posted by: skydawggy on 06.27.2009 at 12:14 pm in Windows Forum

I'd be more concerned with his methods of installation. Many times an installer who is used to installing low end windows often times is more interested in getting the job done quickly than taking his time and doing it correctly. Some of the questions I would have would be,

1. Does he use fiberglass insulation or foam such as Dow or Hilti? Foam being the preferred method.

2. What type of caulk does he use? Quad being the preferred type but some of the installers still use silicon inside and out. BTW nothing wrong with using Silicon on the inside. We use it b/c the fumes are less toxic and noxious than the Quad for the first 24 hrs.

3. What does he do to level the window on the existing sloped sill?

I'd ask him these questions to get a conversation started about his install technics and then ask for some references from jobs he did 4 or 5 years ago and call the people and get their input. I'd also ask for the addresses of a few homes he's done recently and visit them. Pay close attention to the capping and caulking. If the exterior molding was a Contoured Colonial type, did he just bend the trim coil into a "U" shape and cap or did he take the extra time to fabricate a piece that matched what was there. Also look to see if he made a rain diverter on the top of the window if it was installed into siding.

He may very well do a good job for you but I'd still check on the above suggestions before signing a contract.


clipped on: 04.06.2012 at 01:10 pm    last updated on: 04.06.2012 at 01:10 pm

RE: daveinorlando..... (Follow-Up #2)

posted by: daveinorlado on 09.04.2010 at 09:42 am in Kitchens Forum

I am not afraid to give my opinion on here. I imagine many others who make a living on kitchen and bath products that read this site do not like my posts I am willing to tell you what you need to know where you and the retailer both win on price point of brands I know the costs on.

Kabinart is a 10 year warranty cabinet made in the USA from a family owned cabinet company. They are easy to price cause they only offer the cabinets in plywood construction.

Dealers are normally less then the Woodmark and Shennandoah brands at Lowes and Home Depot if the cabinets are sold @47% of list price. That is where I start my quotes to one time buyers but honestly I will go as low as 39% and still feel it is worth the sale.

In the Glazed Cabinets the cost goes up 15%. The good news is you can have glazes or paint finishes for 15% extra but you get glaze for free on painted finishes if wanted.

54% of list price is where I shoot for on paint with glaze 45% of list price is about as low as I will go. A typical 20-30 ft kitchen when I go as low as I am willing translates to about $1,000 to $1,500 profit as a store owner. You can stay in business as long as you are involed in at least 1 kitchen a week like that.

Interstock cabinets are ok. IF it is your dream home I would consider other alternatives first that have better warranty's first.

I know most garden web readers jump from the roof tops to save you from a Chinese product! I do not honestly know where Ikea cabinets are made but I bet it is not in the USA! Sunco is a company you should consider. They are based in the Boston Area. They import their products pre finished and put them together professionaly with machines clampls and all kinds of tools to glue them together the american way before shipping them. Their elite series is not RTA. A great cabinet for the money. You can not choose your stain color because they buy on large scale to stock the items they sell pre finished but you can not beat the price.

6 square cabinets offers an awesome cabinet for the money. Their products are based on the same model. They offer limited Lifetime warrranty and the finish in my opinion is unbeatable. You should be able to get a price of 39% of list price or less on a 6 square cabinet. a 100% mark up on 6 square is 52% of list price. You should be able to do the math from that to figure everything out you will ever need to know to negotiate.

Independent dealers who carry the allwood brand cabinet sold in Costco get the cabinets at 50% less then costco does. I have no idea how much costco marks it up I have not taken the time to figure it out. I will in the coming week or two. I did a price for possible customer this week with 32 lineal feet of base and wall cabinets and came up with a price of approx $8,500 to the consumer with 36" wall cabinets with crown in a raised panel with glazing. 5 piece drawer fronts with dove tail and soft close drawers, soft closing door hinges, plywood construction and limited lifetime warranty. My dealer cost was approx $5,500. I would be happy to negotiate with the customer if I feel I will be taken seriously. I marked it up exactly 50% so I know I will be less then Costco who is the biggest competition on that product. I will always be less then them at 50%. Go to their website and find a independent dealer in your area that sells it 36% of list price leaves 50% profit for dealer which should be more than enough to keep them happy and give you a better price for a product with longer warranty and great finish.

Interstock is a good product. Their cherry hill door is the best value for the door style. It is the most elegant. Interstock has different multipliers for each door style so I will not get into the math on their products.

If you are looking to consider RTA cabinets I would look at all of the following if I could in your area.

Fabuwood is in NJ they are have a large selection of door styles and colors for being RTA. I do not know if they sell to the public out of a show room as the company that stocks them. A 100% mark up is 60% of list price most cabinet companies try to sell the RTA cabinets for 50-100% mark ups. If you pay 100% it should be assembled and delivered as a minimum. 50% markup is in line with companies on the internet some slightly higher some lower. Fabuwood has to be glued and stapled together so it is a little better quality over a cabinet that has plastic parts that fit together to assemble it. Fabuwood offers a 1 year warranty.

Look at JSI before you decide also since you mentioned this is a home you want to stay in long term. JSI finishes are pretty good and there are several door styles to chose from. 68% of list price is a 100% markup. JSI offers a 1 year warranty.

River Run in Harrisburg Va is an excelent cabinet for the price which is RTA and glued and stapled. Each cabinet has a different multplier of list price to arrive at dealer cost so I will skip teaching you where to bargain to to get a good price and leave enough money for the dealer to stay in business. 1 year warranty

KCD in Raliegh NC imports cabinets from the same cabinet maker as River Run with a slightly lower cost to the dealer. 100% mark up on their Lenox and Tahoe doors style which is excelent price is 68% of list price. 1 year warranty
Remeber 100% mark up should not upset you out of principle in rta products. The overal cost of the cabinets is much less than Made in the USA cabinets so the total dollar amount is generally lower than a semi custom cabinet. Generally I shoot for 50% mark up on the semi custom lines I have with the intention of providing better prices then then the starter brands at the big box stores. Conventional wisdom in our industry tells us that Lowes and Home Depot sell 50% of all cabinets Nation wide. I have no way of knowing if that is indeed true but it is considered to be true by most people I have ever talked to. So if you can beat their prices you are priced right to half of the total competition. I shoot for 25% markup on my custom cabinet products. Generally if my price on a custom cabinet product is $9,000 - $15,000 at a 25% mark up I am making $3,000 -$4,500. At this time I do not ever give out quotes that are much higer then that. I do not attract people that are looking for Wood Mode and other brands like that which are so much more expensive.

TSG is a great company in NJ that imports cabinets they have 10 to chose from to be in competition to interstock. 1 year warranty. 100% mark up is 78% of list price.

IKS in South Carolina is another cabinet company with a few nice door styles to chose from that has a good finish when price matters most. 1 year warranty also. 100% mark up is 68% of list price

Sunnywood sells a great inset cabinet line in RTA if you are looking for that. 1 year warranty is also par for the course! Without my books I am thinking 100% mark up is about 78% of list price also.

Adornus in Miami is a great price for Frameless RTA also. I do not remember their dealer cost of MSRP as I write this. 1 year warranty

Panda kitchen and bath is another frameless company that imports cabinets and sells their own inventory thru panda retail stores. I do not know dealer cost for them. They have a lot of accessories as a general rule also.

Smart Cabinets is an awesome made in the USA cabinet for the money when you are on a budget and want to get something nice if you are ok with flat slab Euro look, Shaker, or Raised panel. I am doing a kitchen for my friend of 20 years He got a quote from Home Depot for $30,000 to reface his cabinets. I got him full overlay shaker cabinets with dove tail drawers (plywood with laminate instead of solid wood) Plywood box construction 36" wall cabinets, shaker crown, super susan base corner cabinets, 32 lineal feet of total cabinetry, pull out spice rack, slide out trash can, roll out drawers in all other base cabinets, 24" pantry with 4 roll out trays,2 30" pots and pans drawer base cabinets built im space saver microwave on the counter next to the pantry, glass diaganol corner cabinets with interior stain and soft close full extension glides on the all the drawers. My dealer cost for his kitchen was $4,050 including shipping. I gave it to my friend for $5,000. Smart is a little known product line in the world of kitchen and bath dealers in the US. Look them up and find someone in your area that sells them. 100% markup is 72% of list price.

Many stores in the Mid atlantic sell norcraft and aristokraft cabinets together. Those stores will also have access to aristokraft's bargain hunters line they call contractors choice. The door styles and finishes are basic but ok. You can not chose to have soft close at this time. I think that is a mistake on the part of the the management of the product line. None the less if you are considering interstock it may be worth a look for you.

If you are going to consider kabinart you should also consider Brandom from Texas. Brandom has a nice selection of door styles but offers 39" wall cabinets and life time limited warranty. 100% dealer mark up is 68% of list price. General rule of thumb is 51% of list price should be less then Woodmark and Shennandoah. Any dealer in todays economy should be willing to sell it for less than that if they are a smaller company without huge overhead.

When you get into the higher end door prices from Kabinart or Brandom Bridgewood Custom becomes a better deal. They offer 10 year warranty on their cabinets. 73.8% of list price is 100% mark up.

Door components in Alabama is another great brand that is customizeable at semi custom prices. They make their own doors so changing door sizes for custom arrangements is not problem for them. 100% mark up is 44% of list price.

Do not expect to get cabinets at less than 25% mark up in made in the USA products and 50% on imports as general rule of thumb. Those percentages leave enough money on the table for the a small cabinet company to stay alive. If there is a designer on comission and base pay and a store to pay for expect higher mark ups.

I hope this is helpfull to someone. I gain a lot of insight in the mind to the consumer when I read the posts which is why I check the site regularly. I am happy to give back to help you learn reasonable price points and info for products I am familar with so you can go shop with confidence in your area.


clipped on: 03.30.2012 at 09:33 am    last updated on: 03.30.2012 at 09:33 am