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November 1st, 2012
By Vivian Martin
 
Daily rituals ground our days with a predictable rhythm that can provide comfort. Although many of them are banal, why not take them from ordinary to extraordinary? Making my morning coffee, for example, is a ho-hum ritual that I perform bleary-eyed; shifting to something like an elegant Chemex coffeemaker could elevate this mundane routine.

In a similar vein, the daily ritual of bathing or showering should be special, taking place in a pleasurable and healthy environment that boosts our well-being. Consider surrounding yourself with one of these handsome and eco-conscious finishes.

Find eco-friendly inspiration (and beauty) in the following slideshow!

October 15th, 2012
By Vivian Martin
 

Sure, we’re called the “water planet,” but remarkably little of the blue stuff — less than 1 percent — is available to us as potential drinking water. The rest is tied up in saltwater, ice caps and other less-accessible sources. That scarcity isn’t obvious to most of us in the industrialized world, where water is cheap and easy to find, but there are a billion others who aren’t as lucky. And our time of easy water may be waning too, with the U.S. Government Accountability Office predicting water shortages in 36 states by 2013.

Being water wise can cut your utility bills, reduce the need for costly investments in water treatment and delivery systems, and contribute to a more sustainable water future. The bathroom is the place to start since it’s the water hog in your home, accounting for more than half of the indoor water you use. Check out these water-wise plumbing fixtures that don’t compromise style or function. 

May 22nd, 2012
By Vivian Martin

Picking the best toilet seems like it should be straighforward — but it isn’t. Trouble is, there are many variables to consider. But at the end of the day, certain toilets tend to rise to the occasion. Terry Love, who is a plumber and plumbing blogger, loves his Toto toilets. Consumer Reports and Consumer Search, which is a meta-analysis of a whole host of reviews, also give props to some American Standard, Kohler and Gerber toilets. For the lowdown on the latest toilets, read on…

Some notes:

• Most of these toilets are low-flow or low-consumption (1.6 gallons per flush or less)
• Most work by gravity not by pressure, like the older toilets. Gravity mechanisms are easier to repair and more effective but are not a great choice for homes with poor plumbing systems.
• Many of these are available in either standard height or “comfort height”/ADA height, which means they sit higher off the ground.
• Most come with an elongated shape or a round shape (better for smaller spaces but I find less comfortable)
• Many have a special coating on the bowl itself to help prevent staining
• You can choose between two-piece toilets and one-piece. The latter are generally more expensive but easier to clean and may look more sleek.

Read more on which toilets are receiving favorable ratings…

February 24th, 2012
By Vivian Martin
Vollinger residence contemporary bathroom
 

Cabinetry can make a major statement in a bathroom — especially a large master bath. Many of the newest, strongest design trends still come from Europe, and American manufacturers bring innovation to the category with smart solutions for your bath.

Follow the slide show below for all of the trends:

November 28th, 2011
By Vivian Martin
Falls Church Bathroom contemporary bathroom

Sometimes it’s hard to get inspiration for a potentially uninteresting 5′ x 8′ bathroom space, and there are good reasons for it. Once you install the sink basin, toilet and bathtub there is not much room for accessories, and most homeowners and builders tend to choose neutral tones and colors for finishes because they are thinking of the resale value. The results are bathrooms we don’t want to spend much time in besides doing our daily routines. Follow the slideshow below for some designs to spark ideas for your next bathroom.

March 27th, 2011
By Vivian Martin

What are some ways to describe an Asian style interior? The words serene, peaceful, and Zen immediately come to mind. Although Asian design could be described as a fusion of styles, there are distinct recognizable elements which are associated with this type of decor. Let’s see how some talented Houzz designers created bathrooms inspired by the Far East.

View this idea book for inspiration…

March 14th, 2011
By Vivian Martin

See What Designers Are Doing With This Versatile, Weatherproof Counter Alternative

Concrete may not be the first material you think of for your countertop, but take note: Designers are doing some amazing things with this readily available alternative to traditional granite or engineered stone. It may seem cold and industrial, but it can look warm or sleek depending on your tastes.

Enjoy the slideshow featuring concrete in various forms – natural, tintled, formed and more!

February 16th, 2011
By Vivian Martin

I love to hear about building material innovations. With that being said, I also tend to wait until the pros have had a chance to work with and evaluate the pros and cons of new materials. In 2010, a new tile substrate called Kerdi-Board from Schluter Systems was introduced to the North American market. This product may very well change the way ceramic, porcelain and stone tiles are installed, especially in high-moisture areas.

Kerdi-Board consists of a core of rigid structural foam sandwiched with a waterproof and felted membrane. When combined with the system adhesives, seam tapes and drain systems, potential water damage to the underlying structure is virtually eliminated. Available in thicknesses from 3/16” to 2”, it cuts with a knife, is light in weight, impervious to water and insulative. The 2” thick Kerdi-Board can even be used to build partitions, benches and tub surrounds. It almost seems too good to be true and if it did not come from a company with a strong loyalty in the tilesetter world, I would be skeptical.

New materials only become mainstream when they boost installation efficiency and cut down on installation costs. A lot of DIY folks get sticker shock when they see the price of Schluter products but the pros know that they can be confident with their installation and long-term performance. The product is light, strong, cuts quietly and dustlessly, prevents movement of water and water vapour and provides thermal insulation (great for steam showers).

kerdi-board shower application

At this time, I could not find Kerdi-Board in any of the big box stores in Canada but tile specialty shops carrying Schluter products can have it ordered in if they do not already stock it.

If you have any comments on this product or if you have pictures of this product in use, we would love to share it with our readers.

Thanks for visiting the DrummondHousePlans Blog!

February 4th, 2011
By Vivian Martin

You have finally selected your bath tile, but do you know what you are using for the shower floor? This surface is an important detail that shouldn’t be overlooked. It is an opportunity to unify the bath design or make a statement. In addition to aesthetics, there are practical issues to consider, such as the floor slope and slip resistance. Let’s take a look at some Houzz showers to see how they were done.


January 28th, 2011
By Vivian Martin

Relaxation can be achieved in a variety of forms. For today we put together a collection of 30 amazing bathroom designs that are meant to release pressure. Whether it is the shape of the bathtub that makes a difference, the inspiring decorative objects or the view that can be admired, these bathrooms all have something in common with relaxation. Some interiors are rich in green arrangements, which add freshness and invigorate the place. We also tried to find a few bathroom designs that have a special color theme. We noticed that wood has a great effect in modern decors- take the first picture for example- as it adds authenticity and personality.

Windows are also of major importance, as they have a huge influence on the aesthetics and atmosphere of a room. Diagonal windows add a dramatic touch and are welcomed in case there is an inclined wall near by. Most of the bathrooms in the pictures below are modern, but you will also notice a few classic elements that combine perfectly with the contemporary arrangements. Have a look and tell us what you think about this collection of bathroom designs.

To visit the entire Bathroom Design Idea gallery from Freshome, click here. Take your time as each image has a lot to offer.

 



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