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Bathroom, Kitchen, Basement Design & Remodeling Ideas for the Nicest Home or Business on the Block

5 Tips to Select an Acrylic Block Casement Egress Basement Window

Written by Mike Foti on . Posted in Basement Remodeling, Windows

Basement egress window
Acrylic block basement egress window
Acrylic block casement window hinge close up
Hinge design of casement style acrylic block escape window

If you’re starting a basement remodeling project and looking to add a entertainment, game, exercise or bedroom local building codes will require the use of an emergency exit egress window. Here are 5 tips to help select the right acrylic block window for this project:  

Get rid of old dated colors in your 1960’s small bathroom – 2 Options to dress up your space without breaking the bank

Written by Mike Foti on . Posted in Bathroom Remodeling, Glass Block

Acrylic bathtub and wall surrounds
Acrylic bathtub liner and wall surrounds lining over an old steel tub and tile walls
Tub space converted into a glass block shower
Tub removed and space converted into a glass block walk in shower

Are you just sick and tired of an old outdated color scheme in your 1960’s bathroom? Are you tiles cracked, or are the walls and grout joints deteriorated?  Let’s face it – the 60’s color schemes are over and some of the materials used are not good enough to eliminate mold and mildew from your shower and bathroom space. How can you turn this eyesore into a shower or bathtub space that is functional, cool, and easy to maintain? Here’s 2 options to consider:  

Project Spotlight: Colored and Frosted Glass Block Shower Window for DIY Home Network BATHtastic Brick Bye Brick Episode

Written by Mike Foti on . Posted in Bathroom Remodeling, Glass Block, Windows

Frosted and colored glass block shower window close up
Frosted & colored glass block shower window wave pattern
Glass block shower wall insert using colored frosted glass blocks
Glass block shower wall using colored & frosted glass blocks

Quite frankly – shower windows can be a pain in the back end. What type of window can you use that will be private, add to the looks of your bathroom and shower and will not rot, rust or deteriorate. This is exactly the problem that Todd and Austene faced in their bathroom remodeling project shown on the DIY Home Network Brick Bye Brick show.  Here’s how they solved this challenge:

5 Tips to Selecting a Tile Shower Backer Board

Written by Mike Foti on . Posted in Bathroom Remodeling

Different thicknesses of extruded polystyrene wall backer boards
Tile over cement backer board
Tile wall installed over cement backer board

Remember the old Fram oil filter commercial – “pay me now or pay me later.” If you’re repairing or building a new tile shower enclosure you know that pay me later can cost you big time (ripping out a shower from water damage is very expensive)! What you don’t see with a shower stall (the materials behind the finished wall) is every bit as important as what you do see. Follow these 5 tips to choose the right tile backer board:

Universal Design Can Be Cool – Using a Decorative Glass Block Bathroom Window to Dress up a Home

Written by Mike Foti on . Posted in Bathroom Remodeling, Glass Block, Windows

  • Glass block bathroom window mural for a universal design based home

    Glass block bathroom window mural for a universal design based home - picture courtesy of Scott Cunningham

  • When most people think of universal design the words that come to their minds might be institutional or boring – and that might have been true in the old days but not anymore!
  • When one of my companies (Columbus Glass Block) was asked to sponsor the Universal Design Living Laboratory Project (a new home being built in Columbus Ohio which incorporates Universal Design and Green Building Concepts) by two friends of mine – Rosemarie Rossetti and Mark Leder – I had no idea of the level of cool elements that would ultimately be designed into their home.

Glass Block Bathroom Window Design – Mix Up Sizes to Make Your Project Pop

Written by Mike Foti on . Posted in Basement Remodeling, Bathroom Remodeling, Glass Block, Windows

Bathroom window using colored & frosted glass blocks in 8" x 8" & 4" x 8" sizes
Bathroom window using colored & frosted glass blocks – 8″ x 8″ & 4″ x 8″ sizes
Vinyl framed glass block window using 6" x 6" , 6" x 8" and 12" x 12" sizes
Vinyl framed glass block window using 6″ x 6″, 6″ x 8″ and 12″ x 12″ sizes clear and colored glass blocks

Why settle for a boring glass block bathroom window when you can be unique? Let’s face it most glass block windows look the same – one clear cube of block stacked on top of another. Mix up the sizes, add color or frosted designs – why design “inside the box” when you can design “outside the blocks?” Use these 7 points for a unique glass block design:

6 Tips to Use Urethane or Sanded Grout for a Tile or Glass Block Shower

Written by Mike Foti on . Posted in Bathroom Remodeling, Commercial Remodeling & New Construction, Glass Block

Urethane grout - premixed bucket

Urethane grout - premixed bucket

Sanded grout in a bag - powder form

Sanded grout in a powder form in a bag

Let’s face it – the #1 place tile or glass block showers fail is in the grout joints. So you need to use the right material the first time around (and save the expensive cost of re-grouting). Follow these tips to save money, time and problems with a shower enclosure.

Hit a Home Run with the Right Bench, Corner or Fold Down Shower Seat

Written by Mike Foti on . Posted in Bathroom Remodeling, Commercial Remodeling & New Construction

Glass block shower wall on granite bench seat

Glass block shower wall on granite covered bench seat

Brazilian walnut fold down shower seat

Brazilian walnut fold down shower seat

In baseball being asked to take the bench is not a good thing – but in shower remodeling selecting the right shower seat will not only add comfort and luxury but can make your space safe and functional as well. Cover these bases to make a winning shower seat selection: 

Small Bath Remodeling – Size Doesn’t Matter

Written by Mike Foti on . Posted in Bathroom Remodeling, Commercial Remodeling & New Construction, Glass Block

Small bath remodeling picture with curved cabinet
Small bathroom remodeling project, subway tile, curved cabinet

In the 2000’s it was the bigger the better in bathroom remodeling projects – large soaking tubs, bathrooms the size of master bedrooms were all the rage. Well those days are long gone. We have a new economic reality in the United States and as we’re all discovering you’ve got to learn how to do more with less. Fortunately cool and functional does not have to be related to size when it comes to small bathroom remodeling project. Learn these 5 ½ steps to make your small bath project shine:

Glass block showers – design with the end in mind

Written by Mike Foti on . Posted in Bathroom Remodeling, Glass Block

Glass block shower design
Glass block shower design with frameless door photo courtesy of M E Whittaker Builders

I’ve seen glass block showers get screwed up plenty of times. In most cases the culprit is poor planning or no planning. Since glass blocks cannot be cut – the shape, size and dimensions of the wall cannot be an afterthought. Follow these 5 ½ steps for a successful project.  

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