Accommodating Homes

The desire for a lovely home for homeowners and their family is important, but equally important is a home that can accommodate certain requirements.

For people in wheelchairs, there are requirements that can make a home work well. Basic elements such as halls and doorways wide enough to allow for wheelchairs to pass through are a must.  Open floor plans often help provide the space for wheelchairs to maneuver among furniture and architectural elements.

Flooring is also important. The best choice is tile for a number of reasons. First, the smooth surface makes it easy to move through a home in a wheelchair. The sturdy nature of tile also means that it will hold up under some potentially rougher than usual traffic. Finally, it’s one of the easier materials to maintain.

Kitchens and bathrooms require some special consideration. They have to be large enough to handle a wheelchair, include a shower with easy access and toilet that is set higher. A lower sink with space underneath works well, and drawer storage is obviously better than a traditional medicine cabinet.

For a kitchen, upper cabinets are not particularly useful, although most homes include them. Plenty of lower cabinet or open shelf space within reach from a sitting position is critical. Having a prep/work surface at table level will make fixing meals much easier, and a faucet with a pull-out spray helps with cleaning up.

Today’s designers and home suppliers are addressing the needs of people with wheelchairs. If this is a concern for you or a member of your family, let us know if you would like more information.

Bathroom Blogfest 2012: Creating a Cottage Style Bathroom

We wanted to finish up Bathroom Blogfest 2012 with a  traditional, warm bathroom design.  This design can work for both newer and older homes.

Cottage style is a charming choice for the bathroom.  Cottage style can work with traditional and farmhouse architecture as well as cottage homes.  These bathrooms favor traditional elements and surfaces and often reference vintage and antique elements.

This bathroom features one of the timeless classics of bathroom design: the claw-foot tub.  These antiques are classics because of their deep soaks and cast-iron construction that holds the heat. Antique claw foot tubs can be found restored to their original condition, and can also be customized with color on the exterior.

The pedestal sink is a nice vintage touch that fits perfectly with cottage style. While these sinks don’t provide storage, their narrow profile is ideal for a small bathroom. Additional storage can be created with a small vintage cabinet, bookshelf, or hanging cabinet.

You could add penny tiles or hexagonal tiles on the floor for a classic vintage cottage style.  Typically, white and black, today’s penny tiles and hexagonal tiles can be found in an array of colors to suit any taste. A soft throw rug next to the tub is a stylish and smart addition to create a soft place to step out of the tub.

Wainscoting on the walls is a great touch in a cottage bathroom. Subway tiles, in classic white, would work nicely on the walls in a cottage bathroom, as well. Charming vintage art and the simple framed mirror complete the cottage look in this bathroom. The wainscoting dark color framed by the white trim and patterned area rug adds visual interest to this bathroom.

We hope you all enjoyed reading about bathrooms this week as much as we did! We’re so grateful to have participated in Bathroom Blogfest 2012 and cannot wait until next year’s group blogging adventure.  Don’t forget to take a look at the rest of the Bathroom Blogfest writers below:

Name Twitter Username Blog Name Blog URL
Susan Abbott susanabbott theIdeaStudio www.theideastudio.ca
Laurence Borel blogtillyoudrop blog till you drop www.laurenceborel.com
Bill Buyok AventeTile Avente Tile Talk http://www.aventetiletalk.com/
Jeanne Byington jmbyington The Importance of Earnest Service blog.jmbyington.com
Nora DePalma steamtherapy The Mr. Steam SteamTherapy Blog http://blog.mrsteam.com/
Mr. Steam noradepalma OR-DP POV www.oreilly-depalma.com/blog
Stacy Garcia kbtribechat kbtribe http://kbtribe.wordpress.com
Diane Kazan dkazan Public Bathroom Blog http://thekazan.blogspot.com
Arpi Nalbandian Arpi_Nalb Avente Tile Talk http://www.aventetiletalk.com/
Victoria & Shelley Redshaw & Pond scarletopus Scarlet Opus Trends Blog www.scarletopus.com
Sandy Renshaw sandyrenshaw Purple Wren purplewren.com
Bruce D. Sanders rimtailing RIMtailing http://rimtailing.blogspot.com/
Paige Smith none Tile tips from installation professionals http://neusetile.wordpress.com/
Todd Vendituoli TALV58 Thebuildingblox http://www.thebuildingblox.com/
Shannon Vogel cyswebsites From the Floors Up http://fromthefloorsup.com
CB Whittemore cbwhittemore Content Talks Business Blog http://simplemarketingnow.com/content-talks-business-blog/
Irene Williams crossvilleinc Elevate Your Space http://elevateyourspace.wordpress.com/
Linda Wright skiptotheloo Skip to the Loo! http://lindaloo.com/

 

Bathroom Blogfest 2012: Ocean Inspired Colors in the Bathroom

Let the bathroom blogging continue! We hope you’ve had a chance to look at some of the other participants’ blogs; they’re all amazing with great, helpful tips.  There’s only a couple more days left of this year’s Bathroom Blogfest so get your reading glasses on and enjoy the designs!

The colors of the ocean just seem to work in a bathroom. It could be the connection with water that makes these colors work so well. We’re not sure why so many of us are drawn to the colors of the sand and sea when designing our bathrooms, but we are. Blues, creams, beiges, greys and greens in soft hues can all work in a sea inspired bathroom.

Whether you choose to design your bathroom in coastal style or not, you can still use ocean inspired colors in the bath.  Floors, walls, shower curtains, towels and mats can all be found in beautiful shades of the ocean and sea. Colors inspired by sea glass, soft blues, greens and white, are a lovely combination for the bathroom that is neither masculine nor feminine. If you have a bathroom that has white tile on the walls and floor, you can add these colors as accents as either paint for the wall or vanity, or in smaller doses by using colorful towels and mats.

Colorful glass tiles inspired by the ocean are beautiful in the shower or on the floor in a coastal or ocean inspired bathroom.  Mosaic tiles used as a border or on the floor can also bring in ocean colors. Mix these colorful tiles with neutral stones like white marble or travertine to bring in another layer of natural beauty.

If the ocean does not inspire you, think about your favorite outdoor space. Mountains, lakes, meadows and deserts can all be color inspiration for your home.

Check out more Bathroom Blogfest 2012 entries here:

Name Twitter Username Blog Name Blog URL
Susan Abbott susanabbott theIdeaStudio www.theideastudio.ca
Laurence Borel blogtillyoudrop blog till you drop www.laurenceborel.com
Bill Buyok AventeTile Avente Tile Talk http://www.aventetiletalk.com/
Jeanne Byington jmbyington The Importance of Earnest Service blog.jmbyington.com
Nora DePalma steamtherapy The Mr. Steam SteamTherapy Blog http://blog.mrsteam.com/
Mr. Steam noradepalma OR-DP POV www.oreilly-depalma.com/blog
Stacy Garcia kbtribechat kbtribe http://kbtribe.wordpress.com
Diane Kazan dkazan Public Bathroom Blog http://thekazan.blogspot.com
Arpi Nalbandian Arpi_Nalb Avente Tile Talk http://www.aventetiletalk.com/
Victoria & Shelley Redshaw & Pond scarletopus Scarlet Opus Trends Blog www.scarletopus.com
Sandy Renshaw sandyrenshaw Purple Wren purplewren.com
Bruce D. Sanders rimtailing RIMtailing http://rimtailing.blogspot.com/
Paige Smith none Tile tips from installation professionals http://neusetile.wordpress.com/
Todd Vendituoli TALV58 Thebuildingblox http://www.thebuildingblox.com/
Shannon Vogel cyswebsites From the Floors Up http://fromthefloorsup.com
CB Whittemore cbwhittemore Content Talks Business Blog http://simplemarketingnow.com/content-talks-business-blog/
Irene Williams crossvilleinc Elevate Your Space http://elevateyourspace.wordpress.com/
Linda Wright skiptotheloo Skip to the Loo! http://lindaloo.com/

Bathroom Blogfest 2012: Using Marble in the Bath

We are participating in the 7th annual Bathroom Blogfest! This year’s theme is “Still Coming Out” and it is a great way to bring together bloggers from all over the globe to talk about bathroom designs.  Take a look at who’s participating this year and get the inside scoop on everything bathroom.

There is just something classic about marble in the bathroom. Marble counters and sinks are traditional designs that continue to be popular today.  But there are new ways to use marble in the bathroom in addition to the classics.

Marble tiles can be applied to the floor, walls, and shower stall.  New tile sizes and patterns make this centuries old material feel contemporary.  Laying the tile in a horizontal pattern, rather than a traditional vertical pattern turns these classic tiles into a contemporary style.   Oversize horizontal tiles, like in this bathroom, are another way to put a contemporary twist on marble tiles.

Marble can be polished, honed and tumbled for shiny and matte surfaces.  Honed and tumbled are better choices for flooring as they are not as slick when wet.  Placing a bath mat down can help absorb water and prevent slips.

The tile is a neutral color, which allows a homeowner to have versatile options for the sinks, countertop, and bathroom accessories.  This homeowner chose to keep the bathroom sinks and countertop clean and neutral by choosing white, but they always have the option of adding a pop of color with towels or candles. Another great option for marble tile choices is classic white marble with grey veins.  A mix of white fixtures and marble has a crisp feeling that makes us think of a luxury hotel or spa.

Covering the walls and tub surround in the same marble tile gives this bathroom a uniform look and only adds to the luxurious spa feeling. Using the same material throughout the space makes the room feel even larger.

Even a little marble can make a big impact. A marble counter in the bathroom would take a small amount of stone and could fit most budgets. You could also add a strip of small marble tile for a sink’s backsplash in the bathroom.  It will add detail and interest to your bathroom.

Read more about Bathroom Blogfest 2012 from other writers:

Name Twitter Username Blog Name Blog URL
Susan Abbott susanabbott theIdeaStudio www.theideastudio.ca
Laurence Borel blogtillyoudrop blog till you drop www.laurenceborel.com
Bill Buyok AventeTile Avente Tile Talk http://www.aventetiletalk.com/
Jeanne Byington jmbyington The Importance of Earnest Service blog.jmbyington.com
Nora DePalma steamtherapy The Mr. Steam SteamTherapy Blog http://blog.mrsteam.com/
Mr. Steam noradepalma OR-DP POV www.oreilly-depalma.com/blog
Stacy Garcia kbtribechat kbtribe http://kbtribe.wordpress.com
Diane Kazan dkazan Public Bathroom Blog http://thekazan.blogspot.com
Arpi Nalbandian Arpi_Nalb Avente Tile Talk http://www.aventetiletalk.com/
Victoria & Shelley Redshaw & Pond scarletopus Scarlet Opus Trends Blog www.scarletopus.com
Sandy Renshaw sandyrenshaw Purple Wren purplewren.com
Bruce D. Sanders rimtailing RIMtailing http://rimtailing.blogspot.com/
Paige Smith none Tile tips from installation professionals http://neusetile.wordpress.com/
Todd Vendituoli TALV58 Thebuildingblox http://www.thebuildingblox.com/
Shannon Vogel cyswebsites From the Floors Up http://fromthefloorsup.com
CB Whittemore cbwhittemore Content Talks Business Blog http://simplemarketingnow.com/content-talks-business-blog/
Irene Williams crossvilleinc Elevate Your Space http://elevateyourspace.wordpress.com/
Linda Wright skiptotheloo Skip to the Loo! http://lindaloo.com/

 

Black & White Flooring Options

Are you unsure what flooring to use for your home? Do you have a bold streak and want something unique? Then you might want to add a bit of pizzazz to your décor with black and white flooring. This color scheme creates drama in any room as it makes everything else in the room stand out. Often chosen for bathrooms and kitchens, we’ve recently seen some designers use it throughout the home.

One way to execute a black and white scheme is by implementing the checkerboard design where black and white tiles are placed alternately on the floor. This is one common way of using these two sophisticated colors together.

Another way to implement a black and white scheme for your flooring is by laying black and white tile squares on the diagonal to make a diamond appearance. This look will make your room look shiny and clean.

A mosaic black and white tile can also be a sophisticated choice, though a bit expensive and complicated, if you want patterns and textures for your tile in your entry or hallways.

Another design option that you can do is by adding a single tile of different color in the middle of the room that has black and white flooring. This will give added drama and will create a pattern that will stand out.

The pinwheel design is also a great pattern to follow when implementing a black and white scheme. To do this, single black tile is surrounded from all sides by white tiles or a variation of this pattern is using a white tile instead, with black tiles surrounding it.

If you want a bold, clean and unique look for your kitchen and bathroom, then a black and white color scheme is the way to go.

Design Inspiration: The Colors of the Mediterranean

Deep blue seas, terracotta tiles, golden sun yellow, olive green, rich ochre—these are the colors we think of when we think of Mediterranean style.  These rich, vibrant colors take their inspiration from the sea, land and sky around the Mediterranean Sea.  Found throughout countries like Spain, Italy, Greece, Turkey and Morocco, the colors of the Mediterranean can be incorporated into your home for a beautiful color palette.

Terracotta flooring is great in a Tuscan or Spanish inspired kitchen. These warm reddish brown tiles can be paired with white or wood cabinets.  Terracotta tile can also be used in entryways and bathrooms. Moroccan tiles that are typically colorful with bold patterns are another choice for flooring or backsplashes inspired by the colors of the Mediterranean.

Plaster walls tinted with a hint of yellow ochre are also wonderful ways to bring in a bit of the Mediterranean to kitchens, bathrooms, living or dining rooms.  Ochre is a warm, golden yellow that looks amazing paired with deep blues and olive greens.

For more Mediterranean color inspiration, look to the textiles of these Mediterranean countries. Provencal fabrics from the south of France offer great color pairings and inspiration for walls, floors and furniture colors.

You can be inspired by the colors of the Mediterranean even if your style is not Mediterranean. Accents in these vibrant colors can work with most styles of decorating. Use these colors as a jumping off point for your own style décor and the result will be colorful and cheerful.

Design on the Diagonal

Taking a square tile and putting it on its point can transform this basic tile into a new and interesting design element: the diamond pattern.  Installing tiles on the diagonal transforms the look of square tiles. Diagonal patterns can be applied to walls, floors and back-splashes. In other words, wherever you install tile you can install tile on the diagonal.

For floors, diagonal tiles can make the footprint of the room feel larger. If you use black and white tiles or colored linoleum tiles, your pattern will be more obvious.  Stone or single colored ceramic or porcelain will have a more subtle pattern.  Using a contrasting or white grout will call more attention to the diamond patterns.

A diamond pattern used as a back-splash is a great way to bring more attention to the wall. Using a diamond pattern with simple square tiles allows you to have a more sophisticated feeling backsplash without the expense of it.

Diagonal lines can also be achieved using wood floorboards. This is an unconventional way to install wood floors. Diagonal lines would look cool in a contemporary or loft space. Double-diagonal patterned wood floors create a herringbone pattern that is more traditional. Herringbone or zigzag patterns are also a big trend for wall and upholstery patterns right now.

Diagonal lines, whether in diamond patterned tile backsplashes or chevron patterned rugs, add dynamic interest to a space. Even a zigzag patterned throw or pillow on the sofa can add this design trend to your décor.