Clippings by taliaferro

 Sort by: Last Updated Post Date Post Title Forum Name 

RE: Cloud Swift...your outlet covers? (Follow-Up #3)

posted by: cloud_swift on 04.24.2008 at 08:40 pm in Kitchens Forum

rmkitchen has the right link. Columbia Gorge Stoneworks,, made our outlet and switch covers. They were a pleasure to work with. They aren't cheap but it was worth it to us to complete the look especially given how many switches and outlets we have.

We followed the directions on their website regarding how much stone to send - they need extra in case they have a problem with an area on the stone. We used two sink cut-outs and the cut outs from the 3 wide switches which were just the size needed for a one wide outlet cover.

We used some plastic transparent film cut to the size of each wall plate so we could slide it around on the scraps and see the stone underneath. We found the spots on the scraps that provided a good match to the backsplash around the wall cover and taped down the transparent film to mark the spot.
Then we packaged the stone and shipped it to Columbia Gorge Stoneworks. My careful DH used about 20 pounds of cardboard to pack the stone because he didn't want it to get damaged in transit! :^o

In a few weeks, this came back:
Here is the back of a wall cover so you can see how much they shape the stone:
We had the blanks marked with letters for each outlet position and they put the letter on the back of each wall plate so we didn't have to figure out which went where. They had one case where they couldn't use the spot on the stone that we had marked but they chose a good alternate spot with a great match. The silvery rectangles on the back are magnets so that we don't have to have screws. We checked and all our outlets and switches attracted the magnets. They have magnets that you can glue in place on the outlet/switch if yours aren't magnetic.

The colored cover on the Lutron outlets extends over the part of the outlet that the magnet would stick to so it is in the way:

No problem, the excess plastic breaks off easily enough - here you can see the plastic with one end taken care of and the other still there:

Close-up of a finished cover in place:


clipped on: 11.24.2008 at 09:18 am    last updated on: 11.24.2008 at 09:18 am

Pls help list popular cabinet companies alphabetically

posted by: starpooh on 03.30.2008 at 03:56 pm in Kitchens Forum

I'm trying to put together an alphabetized list of all the popular cabinet companies for an updated FKB checklist. It would include about 30-35 of the companies most-used by members of this forum.

I'll start.
(Please copy the previous list then insert your entry/entries alphabetically. Thank you!)

Crown Point
Quality Custom Cabinetry (QCC)


list of cabinet companies
clipped on: 03.30.2008 at 10:34 pm    last updated on: 03.30.2008 at 10:34 pm

My KD came in at $180,000 when he knew my max was $150,000

posted by: taliaferro on 12.04.2007 at 03:41 am in Kitchens Forum

Just back from meeting with my KD. When we started the design phase, I told him that my budget was $125,000. That gave me some wiggle room in the event we went over because my MAXIMUM was $150,000. Well, his figures came in at $180,000. *sigh*

During the time we were working on the design and making the selections for materials, I specifically asked him whether he was mindful of my budget. His response was: "Always." I reminded him of the budget parameters and he responded that we were well within that and that I would be pleasantly surprised.

Now, I'm in the position of having to make cuts and it HURTS. The thing is this kitchen does not have a lot of bells and whistles that could be eliminated to cut costs. I passed up things like a potfiller, warming drawer, wine chiller, icemaker, prep sink, etc., choosing to invest in high quality materials.

Just to give you some context:
SIZE: 23' x 14' kitchen space, plus an 11' x 6.5' mudroom

CABS: QCC -Quality Custom Cabinetry $80,000 includes-
* perimeter cabs and 10'x4' island;
* custom legs on island
* custom stain on premium grade maple; island apron will be painted and island cabs will have a darker stain than the perimeter cabs
* wenge wood on mudroom bench
* zebrawood counter for message center

COUNTERS & BACKSPLASH- honed marble slab

RANGE BACKSPLASH- Mosaic glass tile by Oceanside glass

FLOOR- Limestone


RANGE - La CornueFe

HOOD - Best by Broan with masonry plaster finish



* Sink- Franke Pro 16 gauge stainless single bowl undermount 30x18x12
* Faucet - Dornbracht Tara Classic w/ rinsing spray
* Everpure instant hot water & icy cold filtered water
* Soap dispenser, Air switch, tapmaster, garbage disposer

LIGHTING - recessed 5" halogen ceiling throughout, undercab pucks, plugmold (I already purchased hanging ceiling fixture for over island)

STRUCTURAL: expanding opening for 48" x 56" window (Marvin); AND existing partial walls on either side of desk and pantry being removed for new cabinetry.

My question is - do these numbers sound reasonble? Also, am I overimproving if I spend $180,000 for a kitchen remodel on a $700,000 house? I'm not sure if this has any bearing, but our home is on the low end in our development. Homes range from the high $600's to high $900's.

I searched the NKBA website to find the recommended kitchen remodel cost to home value ratio. I remember reading something about that, but I was unable to find it. Does anyone know what that formula is?

**Heres another wrinkle** The KD told me that he was at the point of his "retainage" where he could go no further unless I gave him a deposit for the cabinets. I was too stunned to ask what exactly that meant. Could he possibly mean that I need to put a deposit on the cabs before he will make adjustments to the drawings to get closer to the original budget?

I paid him $1500 upfront for the design. (He's the owner of a design/build firm) We worked together as follows:

Meeting #1-@ my home, introductory meeting; I gave him check for $1500 to put together a design.
Meeting #2- @ my home to survey
Meeting #3-@ showroom, used CAD
Meeting #4-@ my home, KD brought the GC over for me to meet
Meeting#5-@ showroom, CAD
Meeting #6-@ showroom, CAD
Meeting #7-@ showroom, he presented the numbers and gave me the custom stained door sample

After our last meeting, the KD said he would reevaluate the carpentry detailing for the island to see where he could make changes to bring down the cost.
T he link below is to the drawings Ive received thus far. The KD said he would clean them up and fill in dimensions, etc I expect I will get the "final" plans at the same time I get the estimate.

Any opinions on how to deal with the budget overage and the KD who apparently wants a deposit on the cabinets before he will go further, would be most welcome and greatly appreciated.

Here is a link that might be useful: kitchen drawings


clipped on: 02.17.2008 at 04:01 am    last updated on: 02.17.2008 at 04:02 am

Preparing the House for the Remodel & Asthma

posted by: buehl on 01.11.2008 at 12:37 am in Kitchens Forum

My son and I have asthma. DS is particularly allergic to dust...although that really means dust mites. However, b/c we have asthma our lungs are more sensitive to airborne dust, fumes, perfumes, etc.

Does anyone have any advice on preparing the house for the remodel? Since it's winter, we cannot block off the registers in our bedrooms. Will it help to cover the warm air & cold air returns on the first floor? I would think so, but I'm not an expert on ventilation.

Is there anything else we can do? (DS is afraid he'll have to wear a mask all the time...I'm trying to avoid that!)

And no, we don't have some place else to go for the duration--both our families live out of state.

Oh, demolition has been moved to Tuesday now! So, time is short as we race around getting ready. It's starting a month earlier than planned so it's thrown our plans off...but we will be glad to be done by Easter, or so we've been told.

[This is also why I've not been as helpful w/layouts this past week...sorry! I'll be back when things settle into a routine...if they ever do!]


clipped on: 01.13.2008 at 01:12 am    last updated on: 01.13.2008 at 01:12 am

need thoughs on wood topped island - not butcher block

posted by: buffettgirl on 11.14.2007 at 05:01 pm in Kitchens Forum

I'm pretty sure I want a wood topped island. The island won't have any "stuff" in it - it will simply be for sitting/eating/prep. But I won't be cutting directly on it.
I believe we're going to go with Maple.

What sort of finish should I get on this and how hard will it be to keep it looking nice? I don't mind if over the years it gets aged like a table would, from use, but I don't want it to look like crap soon either.

Is it practical? Will I like it? or will it be nothing but frustration to me?


clipped on: 01.09.2008 at 04:34 am    last updated on: 01.09.2008 at 04:34 am

How To Insert A Pic?

posted by: lynninnewmexico on 09.10.2007 at 08:11 pm in Kitchens Forum

Would someone please tell me in simple, basic English how to insert a pic into a post here . . . please? And, please, please don't give me a link to the how-to for this site. (Sigh!)As savvy as I am doing many things on the computer, I have an extremely hard time reading most computer directions written by computer geeks; I couldn't seem to make the directions posted by GW work for me (insert a very red face here). Simple "1,2,3 and you're done" directions would be very (very) much appreciated.


clipped on: 11.18.2007 at 03:41 am    last updated on: 12.27.2007 at 09:29 pm

recessed lights help

posted by: justinp on 12.20.2007 at 12:36 pm in Kitchens Forum

I need some help with the placement of both recessed lighting and under the cabinet lighting. Suggest about what type i should us would also be helpful. I am also putting in granite countertops so i don't know if that is an issue with the UC lights causing a reflection. I am putting a breakfast bar in the top right corner and going to put two pendant lights. Another thing i got to figure out is if i should put all the recessed lighting on one switch or two. The link below is a rough outline of my kitchen any help would be great thanks

Here is a link that might be useful: kitchen layout


clipped on: 12.24.2007 at 03:40 am    last updated on: 12.24.2007 at 03:40 am

Marble and Granite Countertop Sealers

posted by: skagit_goat_man_ on 10.23.2007 at 08:09 am in Kitchens Forum

What brands of sealers have you used and are you satisfied with them? Tom


clipped on: 12.04.2007 at 02:20 pm    last updated on: 12.04.2007 at 02:22 pm

Converting a pdf file to a jpg file

posted by: ntt_hou on 11.19.2007 at 01:40 am in Kitchens Forum

Some forum has "Frequently Asked Questions" but I couldn't find it on this Kitchen forum.

This question was asked a few times so I thought, I'd just post it.

This is a simple way to convert your pdf file into a jpg (photo) format so you can post it on the forum. You'd need to use Adobe Reader version 7.0.

Open your pdf layout in Adobe Reader. At the top horizontal menu, the 2nd listed is "Edit". Under Edit, select "Copy file to clipboard".

Then, open MS Paint Brush. Under Edit, select "Paste". You should see your drawing now. Do a "Save As" and chose JPG as your file extension (right below it). Now you have your layout in jpg (photo) format for posting.

Please e-mail me if you have any problem or question.



clipped on: 11.21.2007 at 12:18 am    last updated on: 11.21.2007 at 12:18 am

RE: Marble counters - Am I beating a dead horse???? (Follow-Up #2)

posted by: momto4kids on 08.31.2007 at 11:26 am in Kitchens Forum

I still stand by my "no stains" on well-sealed marble!!

A few years ago, there were some Carrara "marblers" who frequently posted their experiences. All of them used 511 sealer (not the impregnator). they don't post anymore, but they had a lot of info.

Two things:

1. Now that you have a can try making a poultice to remove it! I think that would be a worthwhile experiment!

2. Reseal your sample (the area that's not stained if you're going to try the poultice!). I have 2 coats. I know the former posters always recommended at least 2 coats. you do want to avoid putting too much sealer on the stone. Water should bead up right away.

Keep us posted!


I saved this formula from former posters...I don't know who, so I can't give credit...

Here's a poultice formula for coffee:

Make a solution of 20-30% peroxide (available at beauty supple places...wear gloves) and a few drops of ammonia. Then mix in some sort of WHITE "material;" e.g., paper towel, napkin, tissue. Make only enough to cover the stain. It should be paste-like (consistency of peanut butter).

Wet the stained area with distilled water. Pre-wetting fills the pores of the stone with water isolating the stain and accelerating the removal by the chemical.

Apply the poultice to the stain being careful not to spill any on the non stained areas. Apply approximately 1/4-inch thick over-lapping the stain area by about one inch.

Cover the poultice with plastic (food wrap works great). Tape the plastic down to seal the edges. It also helps to poke several small holes in the plastic so that the powder will dry out. Failure to do this may result in the poultice staying wet.

Allow the poultice to dry thoroughly. This is a very important step. The drying of the poultice is what pulls the stain from the stone into the poultice material. If the poultice is not allowed to dry, the stain may not be removed.

Drying usually takes from 24 to 48 hours.

Remove the poultice from the stain. Rinse with distilled water and buff dry with a soft cloth. If the stain is not removed, apply the poultice again. It may take up to five applications for difficult stains.


clipped on: 10.09.2007 at 11:19 pm    last updated on: 10.09.2007 at 11:20 pm