Category Archives: Product Advice

What you need to know about windows

Windows recently designed by Rose Construction Inc

Simonton Windows has an excellent article explaining all you could possibly need to know about windows. Topics include:

  • Styles and shapes
  • Why Vinyl?
  • Glass Options
  • Door Hardware
  • Window Hardware
  • Colors and Grids

Energy efficiency and impact-resistant products are explained.

As for window shapes and styles, these are the things that will affect the appearance of your home and the use-ability of the windows. If you want operable windows you definitely want windows that are convenient to open, and lock securely for peace of mind.

There are many manufacturers of windows; check out Simonton and learn all you need to know to make an educated selection when purchasing your next windows!

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How to select your kitchen cabinet material

Kitchen cabinets installed by Rose Construction Inc

Kitchen cabinets come in a variety of materials – everything from inexpensive composite wood products to stainless steel, glass front, bamboo, and a variety of hardwoods.

This article will focus mostly on hardwoods, and much of the information is taken from the website  cabinetexpress. Check them out for more info!

Types of wood used for kitchen cabinets:

Maple contains grain patterns that are particularly attractive, increasing the value of this wood. When stained, the mineral grains that cause the patterns will appear darker and more distinct. Maple is one of the harder woods; the toughness and beauty of maple cabinets combine to create a great material for kitchen cabinets and is the most popular.

Cherry wood has inherently rich tones and colors, setting it apart from other types of wood. The grain pattern in cherry wood is very tight, allowing for smooth finishes and quality stains. Cherry wood cabinets is frequently chosen simply for its beauty.

Oak has the most distinct graining pattern. It can be stained and can appear striped or wavy, very fine or broad. It is an abundant wood and very durable. Because it so abundant, it is one of the least expensive of the hardwoods. Oak cabinets are able to withstand rough treatment and will resist dents and scratches better than other wood cabinets.

Hickory has a distinct grain pattern, with a flowing, sweeping pattern. Smooth and easy to stain, it is a solid, close-grained wood, with a unique pattern of grain.

Birch, like cherry, stains extremely well and is smooth to the touch. The grain patterns in birch wood have subtle waves and flows, providing a warm and cozy appearance in the kitchen.

 Thermofoil cabinets are made from PVC vinyl film. They come in a variety of colors, but white is the most common. They tend to be found in a more modern style kitchen, but can also fit nicely into a traditional setting.

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Bath vanities – what fits your style?

Willow Creek Vanities
Willow Creek vanity in shaker style.

There are a nearly endless number of styles and colors to choose from, which is wonderful, but may make it hard to come to a decision when making your selection!

The amount of space available in your bathroom is the first criteria to consider in selecting a new lav.

Nameek's wall hung lav and optional cabinet

Nameek's wall hung lav and optional cabinet


A more ornate style is shown here:

Traditional  Bathroom Vanity
Ambella Home Di Franco Vanity

After determining how much physical space you have available, consider color and style; they seem to go together. Do you prefer a sleek modern style, or a more ornate, traditional?  

Check out what is available, consider your budget and then do it!

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Great new products for remodelers and new construction

Cree's award wining LED bulb
Cree’s award wining LED bulb

We often get asked what is the best type of lighting. Everyone knows incandescents are on their way out – but what is the best replacement?  It depends somewhat on what you want from a light fixture – do you need it to turn on immediately? A great new bulb from Cree, the CR6 LED downlight is more efficient than a comparable compact flourescent bulb, turns on to full brightness immediately and contains no mercury. 

Another great product for aging-in-place bath remodels is the Elevance, a walk-in bath with features that make it a pleasure to use. It has an extra-wide door opening to make entry for wheel-chair uses easier; the sliding wall moves with less than 5 lbs of force; a stylish grab bar is part of the tub; an inflatable seal keeps the water inside, and sensors keep the door from opening when the tub has water in it.

Kohler's practical and stylish walk-in tub
Kohler’s practical and stylish walk-in tub
Then get to work on planning your next kitchen or bath remodel.



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Filed under Aging-in-place, bathrooms, Product Advice, Remodel Kitchen & Bath, remodeling

Creative and beautiful bathroom fixtures

Don’t go with the ordinary; these fixtures are works of art!

Tam Tam washbasin by Laufen

Tam Tam washbasin by Laufen

Kitchen and bath design newsis the online source for these wonderful bathroom fixtures.  Another washbasin from Laufen’s collection is called the Il Bagno Alessi One Tuna washbasin.

Laufen's Il Bagno Alessi One Tuna

Laufen's Il Bagno Alessi One Tuna

I wonder what inspired its shape? Here is a poetic description straight from Laufen:

“Laufen’s Il Bagno Alessi One Tuna washbasin features graceful curves and ample space. The soft fluid lines of the ceramic sink are highlighted by the clean white or new warm grey finishes. It is available with or without a tap hole, allowing a faucet to be positioned on an adjacent wall.”

Banner Image

Laufen designed bathroom

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Great luxury bath fixtures!

Cool new bath fixtures:

Very stylish bath tub

Kohler's answer to the question "Can I put a hot tub inside my house?"

This is like a neat combination of the hot tub and a bathtub! Kohlers website states:

“The deep bathing wells allow users to sit almost totally immersed in water. Available in a soaking model and a bubble massage bath, the tubs are designed for two bathers.”

Here is another great idea to increase the size of your tub and still in a standard alcove:

Expanse curved bath

Expanse curved bath


Kohler has another great idea with this bath!

Another favorite luxury item in the master bath is a steam shower. So amazingly relaxing, especially in the winter months when everywhere you go it’s so cold out!

Steam shower

Steam shower


Kohler’s newly designed steam generator kits feature a steam head that protracts from the wall when heating and retracts when not in use for a clean appearance.

Go to Kohlers website for more information and for even more great bath products.

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Amazing Glass Bath!

We just finished the most amazing and I think, exceptional bathroom! Our client had a desire for a white on white bathroom, with contrasting patterns of tile creating focal interest in the room. With the addition of a sleek, modern warming rack for bath towels and a lav with strong, clean lines, this bathroom is a standout. The glass wall of this roomy shower with its Arctic White, built in Corian bench and trim is set off by the contrasting penny round floor tiles in the shower base and bathroom floor.

Tiny accent lights in the shower ceiling provide delicate spot lighting where needed. The tiles are from Ann Sacks, and you can go to their website at :  

Or go directly to the crystal mosaic tiles products page with this link: Check out the variety of sizes, styles and colors Ann Sacks carries in the glass tiles. This is a website for inspiration in designing your bathroom remodel.

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Green Remodeling:

There have been a great many articles on using “green” materials in remodeling and new construction.  Green refers to materials that have been recycled or sustainably produced so that no harm is done to the environment in their harvesting, manufacturing or their “afterlife” – their recycling/ re-use capability.

Today we are fortunate that there are many sustainably produced products to choose from for remodeling kitchens, bathrooms and any other part of your home.  I was impressed with the LEED certification for the beautiful solid surface countertops in LG Hausys Hi-Macs Eden line of countertop products.  LEED is an acronym for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design and is the standard for  environmentally sustainable construction.

Eco-friendly decorative toilets with dual flush technology are an excellent way to conserve water use.  Popular, high quality brands such as Kohler, Karsten, American Standard and Toto, among others, provide fashionable and at the same time water conserving toilets.  We invite you to check out their websites to see the wide array of fixtures available.

Carpeting that has a high recycled content is an earth friendly choice; millions of tons of used carpeting are discarded every year in the United States and the synthetic materials will take thousands of years to decompose.  While you are replacing the carpeting don’t forget the underlayment; it should be recyclable as well. 

Another advantage of green products is that most produce very little, if any VOC’s (Volatile Organic Compounds).  The off-gassing of new paint, glues and fabrics is problematic for people with allergies or for those who are concerned about the long term effects of breathing these fumes.  Low VOC products include interior finishes that are low to zero-VOC as well as paints, stains and wall coverings.  In addition, wood floor finishing can now be accomplished with water-based urethane products. 

What does all this mean for us?  Most of us are interested in how to make our home furnace or cooling system work more efficiently and in finding out where we can purchase sustainable products for our kitchen and bath remodels at a reasonable price.  When it really comes down to it, we have to consider the first costs for a remodel or new construction.  Can we afford all these “green” materials?  If the cost is too high, then it won’t happen.  The good news is that with increasing interest and purchasing of sustainable materials, the costs are coming down; in fact right now many products are comparable to less “green” materials.  So when you plan that next remodeling project, consider the green alternatives before making a final decision.

Some helpful websites for “green” materials are listed here:

Low VOC materials

Plumbing fixtures:



Countertops from a local company:

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Choosing Paint

Last week I wrote about interior painting. If you’re still looking for a great paint, take a look at the article How to Choose Paint from Mother Earth News for information about what type of paint to use in specific rooms as well as low- and no-VOC paints and natural paints.

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Trendy is Classic with Subway Tile

The problem with trends is that they’re over quickly and can date your wardrobe or project. When you incorporate trends into your wardrobe it’s easy to move on when the trend is over. However, that’s not nearly as simple to do when the trend is used in your decor or remodel. For example, one of the newest trends, plaid, may once again be exclusively used by Washingtonian males wearing sandals-with-socks and college dorm rooms once the fad is over. Therefore, plaid wall-to-wall carpet may not be the best idea unless you plan to remodel again in a year.

Trends don’t last, which is why I’ve been excited to see subway tiles used so much recently. Yes, it is a definite trend but the difference is that this is an affordable classic element that will never go out of date. Once the trend has run its course, subway tiles will still look elegant and beautiful. They are extremely versatile and work well with almost every decor style from historic to sleek to shabby chic. Want to see a few  examples? Well, take a gander at just two samples from our portfolio:

Tile and ToiletAbove: Subway tile in non-standard 4″x8″ plays against mosaic flooring and marble in this updated bathroom.

Subway Tile BackgroundAbove: Standard sized subway tile (3″x6″) and a deco strip provide a classic backsplash for the kitchen in this historic home.

Subway tiles are also available with a bevel if you want a more 3d appearance. If you’re going for the handmade variety, the possibilities are almost endless (just ask your tile maker but be prepared for sticker shock). And, if course, if you’re going after the true trend, try subway tiles in another color (black and gray seem popular in the blogosphere) or install the tiles vertically rather than horizontally. Search online for inspiration and realize that in ten years your subway tile will look classic whereas your plaid carpeting may be tomorrow’s version of avocado fixtures.

© Rose Construction 2009

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