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Blog for amazing home improvement and remodeling projects in the Philadelphia area. | December 13, 2017

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Shower Systems For an At-Home Spa

October 24, 2016 |

Who doesn’t want to end their day at a spa, relaxing their worries from the day away? What would happen if we told you that we can bring the spa to your home? There are a number of different shower systems that can provide you with the same relaxing, peaceful feeling as if you just ventured out to the spa!

Shower Heads for Anyone

In looking at shower heads and systems, there are a number of different types: standard wall-mount, top mount, sliding bar, and handheld.

  • A standard wall mounted is directly mounted to a wall in the shower and is typically installed at a height specific to the client’s preference to allow for ease of use while showering. A shower head can range from simple design to elaborate.
  • A top-mount shower head is affixed to the ceiling in the shower and usually best accompanies a rainhead shower to give the full access of bathing in a rainforest!
  • A sliding-bar shower head allows for each user to adjust the shower head height based on their personal preference along a wall-mounted base.
  • A handheld shower can be in addition to the wall-mounted shower head, where it can be removed or stationary depending on client preference as well.

In terms of finishes, typically all shower systems are available in polished chrome, satin nickel, and antique bronze.

Wall-Mounted Shower Head

In the simplest form, a shower can contain a wall-mounted shower head and temperature valve as pictured:

screen-shot-2016-10-18-at-11-19-04-pm bathroom-marble-ceramic-tile

This allows for a shower head to distribute water and a temperature gauge to have the user turn the dial to the desired temperature and water pressure.

Handheld Shower

A tier above a simple shower head and temperature gauge, an additional item can be added for better utilization from the user, a handheld shower. A handheld shower can be installed in addition to a shower head. This handheld shower can be of great use to clients with children, pets, or just for easier use of water distribution. A handheld shower can exist on either a bar where it has the option to move vertically or can be affixed to a stationary bracket, respectively.

screen-shot-2016-10-19-at-12-16-19-am spa_1 spa_2

A popular option for the handheld shower is to have this affixed to the wall with either a stationary or moveable bracket and have an overhead rain head shower:

Alternate Nozzles and Sprays

In further upgrading your bathroom getaway, a shower can have alternate nozzles and sprays for steam and alternate water distribution.

img_2210 img_2214 pic-3

Feeling Overwhelmed?

We understand choosing the right shower experience can be overwhelming with all of the different options available, so here are a few items to think about to help narrow down the options:

  • Think about your dream shower/bath experience and make it come to life!
  • Adjustability to all users of the shower is key, so if you are on the fence about choosing between a stationary or removable handheld shower, go for the adjustable option so each user is able to customize their spa-like experience
  • If you see a product that breaks your budget, try to narrow down what specific features you like about that fixture and look for those features in alternate models below your budget

Overall, coming home after a hard day’s work is most rewarding if your bathroom space helps you to relax and separate yourself from daily life. So why not have the spa treatment in your own home?

Convenient and Stylish Shower Storage Solutions for Any Modern Bathroom

October 21, 2016 |

Storage space is hard to come by in a bathroom. Even with a recessed medicine cabinet, a linen closet, and vanity space, I still have trouble storing items for daily use. More storage solutions are hidden right in front of your eyes! Focusing on just one area, the shower/tub, we can already point out 4 points of added storage space: recessed shower niche, in shower bench seating, wire baskets, and corner shelving. Check out how you can maximize your bathroom storage below!

Recessed Storage Niches

Recessed storage niches can maximize storage greatly. While updating your walk-in shower and/or tub in your bathroom, we get so excited over the new finish material opportunities but often neglect to design specified storage within the shower for ease of use. Niches are great at accommodating small and large shampoo bottles, soaps, and anything else one needs in the shower. Compared to any other storage solution in a shower, niches do not take up any additional space. A typical recessed niche is 12” W x 24” H. The 12” width allows the recessed niche to fit between vertical studs behind the wall which are typically 16” apart. The typical depth of a recessed niche is 3.5”, which is the width of a wood stud. Niches can range in width and height but should be discussed prior to starting so as to make sure any plumbing or electrical wires are not in the way as well as supporting of cut stud if make larger in width.

Recessed niches should be installed in interior walls compared to exterior walls. Materiality for these niches have to be taken into consideration as well. Niches can be tiled and can be framed with different edges to retrieve a different look. For example:

Metal edges on a niche vs. bullnose tile.

Metal Edges on a Niche

Metal Edges on a Niche

Bullnose tile

Bullnose Tile

 

Recessed niches can also span to large widths such as:

master_bath_remodel_-24-of-54

Wide Niche

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Niche

Wire Baskets

Wire baskets can be installed to either corner of the shower. These are meant to provide secured storage for soaps and shampoo/conditioner bottles without them slipping and falling off shelving. This is an alternative to recessed storage niches and pie shelves. These items are typically finished to be rust resistant. The wire baskets allow for moisture to completely escape, allowing for no moisture build up. Wire baskets provide a more contemporary/modern aesthetic to any shower.

 

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Wire Baskets

shower-caddies

Wire Basket

Corner Shelves

Corner shower shelves are an additional alternative to recessed storage niches and fixed wire basket storage. Pie shelves are meant to be installed in the corner of showers and tubs. Unlike the wire basket storage, pie shelves come in a few different materials such as marble, glass, and stone.

Shower corner shelving can come in the shape of a 1/4 pie and triangle size. Typically more 2-3 corner shelves are installed in a shower to allow for ample storage space for multiple users in the shower. A corner shelf can even be installed as a seat and/or foot rest for shaving. Heights for installation of pie shelves are based on their specific users. If you are designing for clients that are shorter or taller than average, it is recommended you install based on the needs of your client. As a point of reference, the corner shelves should be installed within minimum and maximum reach distance for the user, 36”-60” off the finished floor.

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Pie Shelf

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Shower Corner

Shower Benches

Shower benches can become another means of storage within a shower. Typically they need 15” in depth to allow adequate enough space while the seat comes 17”-19” in height from the finished floor. Corner benches are typically installed out of the spray area from the shower head, anchored at 18” from the ground so that feet can be tucked underneath. At this height, this bench can be utilized at a foot rest for shaving or lowered storage for shampoo/conditioner bottles.

Typical materials utilized for shower benches ranges from stone to wood, specifically teak. Shower benches can opt to fold for storage while showering and while not in use can store itself for added space in the shower.

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Stone Shower Bench

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Teak Wood

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Wall Mount Teak Seat

With all these storage solutions possible in just the shower/tub area alone, how can you just choose one? Each offers their own unique solution. When choosing some of these solutions for your bath remodel, don’t forget to consider what you seem to be missing in your current space and what can appeal to all users of the new space!

Different Types of Bathtubs: The Ultimate Guide to the Perfect Bathtub

March 13, 2016 |

Few things are better than a hot, long and relaxing soak in the bathtub after a long day of work. When your muscles are sore, and your body aches, a hot tub can be the perfect remedy that will bring you back to live, relieve physical pain and discomfort and reduce stress. Bathtubs nowadays have become more than just an asset for good hygiene. With different bathtubs regarding style, installation and materials, it is becoming harder and harder to find the right bathtub for you. Before you consider what type of tub is the one for you, answer the following questions:
– How often do you use the bathtub, and for what purpose?
– How much space you have in the room for a bathtub?
– Where will you place the tub?
– What design fits you best? What color or/and material will fit best for your style?

basic bathtub

Basic Generalization of Tubs

As mentioned previously, there are different generalizations of tube. The most basic one is soaking tub, walk-in bathtub and whirpool and air tubs.

Soaking tubs are deeper than standard bathtubs, with their sole purpose to allow you to soak your entire body into the hot water. Soaking tubs come in various shapes, styles and sizes, with the biggest difference the amount of water they can hold.

Walk-in tubs come with a door that serves to purpose of allowing you to walk in directly into the tub and eliminates the need of climbing over the edge. Walk-in tubs are recommended for elderly people and people with limited mobility. Because of the door, walk-in tubes can sometimes occupy larger space.

Last, but not least, whirlpool and air tubs are actually therapeutic baths that can shoot air bubbles and water into the tub. For the owner and the user of the tub, this provides massage sensation.

Different Materials

In most cases, choosing the material depends on the budget of the household. Some are cheaper, some are more expensive, and some are just in between. Choosing the right material depends on lots of factors. So, in order to find the best for you, let’s list some of the features of each material.

  • Fiberglass is actually a reinforced plastic covered in gelcoat. Fiberglass is mostly used for air and whirlpool tubs because of it flexibility. Fiber tubs can be shaped easily, and the gelcoat provides the glossy surface. Fiberglass is one of the easiest materials for cleaning.
  • Acrylic is the commonly used material for bathtubs, with wide palette of styles and shapes to consider. Acrylic tubs are resistant to fading and abrasion, they are lightweight, and if insulated, they hold heat. Acrylic is more expensive than fiber, and some classify it as expensive plastic. The price can vary between $350 and $800. Acrylic is prone to scratching, but the scratches can easily be repaired.
  • Enameled steel are moderately priced tubs with a reputation for resistance to strains and scratches. The choice of colors is limited, and the price can go as high as $1,000. Similar to cast iron, enameled steel tubs have one downside, and that is susceptibility to rusts. They retain heat well, and provide excellent soundproofing. Thanks to their lightweight, enameled tubs can be moved easier than cast iron.
  • Cast iron is similar to enameled steel, but with a sole difference of offering more color choices. Aside from colors, cast iron offers same features as enameled steel: great heat insulation and stain resistance. Their weight requires stout deliverymen and support in the bathroom. The price can go as high as $1,200.
  • Wood is one of the most unique materials you can have in your bathroom. The downside is you wood comes with a lot of baggage, as in solid surface sealer that will prevent deterioration. Wood does not offer long-term durability, as the material is susceptible to water staining and leaking. In order to get a special leak-proof and durable bathtub, you will probably need to invest more than $10,000 because of the special preparations needed to ensure your safety.
  • Solid surfaces are made out of composition of acrylic and polyester resins that are then baked into sheets. The result is a flexible surface that retains heat well, is stain resistant and comes in wide range of colors.

bathtub solid surface

  • Cast Polymer is a material that offers a mixture of the advantages of stone and synthetic materials. For starters, you get the look of stone and the flexibility of synthetic materials that result in more color choices and styles. The only problem is gel coating is not as durable as other materials, acrylic for example.
  • Cultured marble is the best “stone” option for bathtub producing a solid-surface product. Marble is usually pricier than other materials, but the advantages are: sleek and stylish look, wide palette of colors and patterns, stain resistance and long durability. The downside is that marble can be scratched easily.
  • Copper is the ultimate material for fine bathroom couture. If you are ready to pay $5,000+ for a bathtub, you’ll be a proud owner of a bathtub that everyone will love to look at.

Installation

  • One of key factors to consider before purchasing a bathtub is the installation process. Where will you position the tub is one of the first question to answer here. In that regard, these are the different types of tubs.
    Alcove tube is rectangular in shape, and you can install it adjacent to three walls. One side of the tub is left accessible, with the front, back and one side always bordered with a wall or other structure. Alcove tubs are usually considered the standard bathtub, with the installation coming from right or left side.
  • Platform installation tubs are also known as “drop in” tubs. The installation requires a built-up structure, where the rim of the structure is as the same level as the top of the deck. In most cases, whirlpool and air tubs use platform installation.

The sole difference between platform installation and undermount installation is that the rim is covered by surrounding deck which can be made out of tiles and/or stones. A floor structure supports the tub, positioned underneath. One of the things you need to consider is whether you will need or want to move/remove the tub. If you opt for stone deck top, you will need to break it in order to remove the tub.

The last two types of installation are free standing and corner installation. Both are self-explanatory, with the free standing easy to position anywhere in the bathroom. The only thing to consider is you need to position the tub close to delivery and drain plumbing.

Tub Features

Some of the features that can be installed on any bathtub can enrich your bathroom, or change completely the outlook and function of the tub.

Mosaic and ceramic tiles can be used to customize the tub. The price of your tub will go up, but you’ll end up with a unique piece of tub in your bathroom.

ADA Compliance is a feature designed for elderly people and people with special needs. The ADA Compliance ensures your tub is on pair with the Americans with Disabilities Act. One of the features here are a grab bars and other accessories that allow for better movement in and out of the tub.

bathtub luxury feautres

Other unique features include installation of jets and bubbles, chromatherapy with underwater LED lights, music, digital controls, and so on.

 

dRemodeling – is a Philadelphia design and build  company specializing in bathroom projects- for more information about bathrooms or to schedule an appointment with our designers  call us now 215-848-4444

 

Soaking tub

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Elkins Park Bathroom Renovation With Custom Flooring

June 22, 2012 | 1

 

Last week, we wrapped up a bathroom renovation project in Elkins Park. The couple whose house we worked on was so excited about their new bathroom that the wife gave the shower a test run before the project was even completely finished! To say the least, she was extremely satisfied with the results.

We transformed this space from an outdated musky bathroom into a warm, elegant place for a couple to relax and comfortably pamper in. The existing bathroom was surrounded by a dull brown ceramic tiling, with accessories to match. The overall look of the prior bathroom was outdated and dingy – the accessories looked almost plastic.

 

 

So, we stripped everything down and gave the

bathroom a complete makeover – floors, walls,

lighting fixtures, accessories, vanity, mirror, toilet

– the works!

 

 

The couple wanted a classy, chic and elegant bathroom. They wanted the space to feel posh yet inviting. So, we chose materials that reflected this agenda and created a warm and relaxing spa-like bathroom.

Using neutral colors and warm lighting, the caramel color of the tiles we chose reflect and emit a tranquil and peaceful atmosphere. The walls and floors are Antico stone field tiles.

 

 

 

We installed a custom designed marble tile detail

on the floor and the shower walls, 1/2″x1/2″ and 1″x1″

Mosaic stone, respectively.

 

 

 

The couple handpicked the vanity from Pottery barn that includes a granite top and drop in sink, a 24″ framed mirror and duo sconces add to the group.

We installed sliding glass doors with chrome handles to encase the shower. The handlebars and shower accessories inside compliment the rim of the glass doors.

 

 

There is an additional light in the exhaust fan,

and two recessed lights in the ceiling,

offering more brightness into the area.

 

 

 

Needless to say, the finished product was a complete flip over from what had existed before. The couple is now happy to wake up in the morning and get ready in their brand new bathroom.

FREE COFFEE!

April 19, 2012 |

 

That’s right – FREE COFFEE.

We’re on a mission to get 500 Facebook likes, and anyone that helps us get there will be entered to win FREE COFFEE.

Simply head to our Facebook page and hit “Like.” Anyone that Likes us on Facebook is AUTOMATICALLY entered into a drawing to win a $25 Starbucks Gift Card. How easy is that?

 

Tell your friends and family so that they’ll have a chance to win too. Once we hit 500 Facebook likes, we’ll randomly pick one of our Fans to receive the FREE $25 Starbucks Gift Card.

Hurry up and head over to our Facebook Page to Like us!