The need to ditch the bathtub has never been higher. With the desire of older homeowners to age in place, and fewer people having the time to take baths, the number of bathtub to shower conversions has been growing steadily. While tub to shower replacements are not a new concept you’ll learn in the video and article below 4 ½ new ideas to add both function and style to these projects.
If you’d like to have the look of natural stone in your shower stall or tub enclosure but thought the cost was out of reach – think again! In the video and article below learn the benefits and uses of a cost effective, low maintenance shower and tub wall panel system which is rapidly growing in popularity.
Combining advanced digital imagery with a ¼” thick PVC backed composite
Design Imaging of Orem Utah combined their knowledge of computerized imaging to replicate the look of large slabs of stone and marble. These images are then bonded to a PVC backing and sealed to create designer shower or tub wall panels.
Benefits of designer wall panels
Some of the benefits of this PVC backed composite wall system include:
- Wall panels are light and easy to install even for a do it yourself consumer. They can be cut with a carpenter’s knife.
- Creates the look of real stone at ½ the cost.
- 20 different patterns provides a large degree of design flexibility for any decorating theme.
- No grout joints eliminate the maintenance associated with tile projects.
- There is no need (or expense) associated with having to seal the panels.
- These wall panels can be installed over old tile to reduce installation time and disposal costs (note – make sure the tile walls are not spongy to ensure there is no mold behind the backer wall).
- Easy to install corner shelves, recessed niches and accent borders improve the look and functionality of the enclosure.
The primary use of this material is for tub enclosures and shower stalls, but it can also be used for kitchen backsplashes or any other area where a natural stone look is desired.
Purchasing designer wall panels or finding a contractor
On a nationwide basis this material can be purchased by a homeowner or contractor through Innovate Building Solutions. On a regional basis The Bath Doctor of Cleveland, Akron and Columbus Ohio can provide installation service.
What additional questions or comments do you have about these designer wall panels? Please comment below.
If you’re looking for more information or an estimate to install these designer shower or tub wall panels contact The Bath Doctor of Cleveland (216-531-6085) or Columbus (614-252-7294).For nationwide direct product sales call Innovate Building Solutions (877-668-5888). For complete bathroom remodeling contact Cleveland Design & Remodeling (216-658-1270).
When Debi and her husband George were looking to remodel their small Texas bathroom their goals were to combine an easy to clean and user friendly walk in shower with and to use unique wood elements. In order to use every available inch of space the couple removed a wall to pick up 2′ in width (so the final dimension of the space was 7.5′ x 7.5′ – see pictures during demolition below) and used a pocket door to help with space restrictions.
The finished bathroom was a stylish door-less shower highlighted with a one of a kind glass block design with several unique uses of durable species of wood in the trim, ceiling and cabinetry. Learn more about this project below.
The Walk in Shower
As Debi said, “We were looking to convert our little bity bathroom into a larger walk in shower. We did not want to incur any costs associated with moving the plumbing, but wanted to invest our money in this remodel on high quality finished materials that would last – and also include the wood features that George loves!”
This focus on high quality, low maintenance and stylish products resulted in the following selections:
- Decorative glass block shower wall with cocobolo trim – Working with Lillie Burton from Innovate Building Solutions 3 glass block patterns (Vue, Decora and Seascapes) were combined with a “sunset” colored glass blocks and decorative glass tile blocks to create a distinctive design. The wall was trimmed with cocobolo wood – which is an oily, dense wood which has red, brown and white colors naturally inherent in the wood. Wow – what a cool combination! (note – yes it is fine to use this cocobolo trim in a wet shower environment due to the dense nature of this species of wood).
- Happy Floors 12” x 24″ porcelain tiles in Bambu Beige– Debi just loves the abstract look of the porcelain tiles which were laid horizontally from the floor to the ceiling. The big sized tiles are not only nice and stylish to look at, but they result in fewer and smaller grout joints.
- Teak flooring used on the ceiling – This room takes on a stunning and warm appearance with the use of teak flooring on the ceiling of the entire bathroom.
The Use of Custom Wood
The cool use of durable and decorative wood does not stop at the shower. In the main portion of the bathroom George built a custom bathroom cabinet and vanity with ribbon wood and birch trim. The vanity used a Kohler ledges undermount bathroom sink in a ember color. The cabinets were topped off with granite.
In addition George made a custom towel rack that looks like a small ladder – what a fun and functional use of wood!
While Debi and George were very hands on with this project (creating the cabinets, towel stand, glass block wall installation and final wood trim details) – they also had help in the final result. The construction and build out was done by Kitchen and Bath Wizards and the glass blocks were provided by Innovate Building Solutions.
What do you think about Debi and Georges’ walk in shower? What experience do you have with using wood products in a bathroom environment. Please comment and ask questions below.
Learn More About Frosted Block Windows
To learn more about the frosted protect all glass block windows or get a free estimate on a glass block window, wall or shower project visit or call span itemscope itemtype=”http://schema.org/LocalBusiness”>
Innovate Building Solutions
on a nationwide basis (877) 668-5888) or for a local project their divisions including
Columbus Glass Block
Cleveland Glass Block
West Side Glass Block
(216) 398-1020) or
Mid America Glass Block
(513) 742-5900) of Cincinnati or Dayton and Akron
While looking at Tina Crabb’s finished luxury bathroom would make many people envious – what makes this project even more special is the “under the hood” elements you don’t see.
Learn below some of the innovate products and installation methods used by general contractor/remodeler Jeff Pettus (of Snowline Designs) and Ray Visco (of Visco Tile & Stone) to create a bath remodel that will not only stand the test of time for Tina – but also provided time effective methods for the contractors to install as well (Note: In Part 1 of this series learn more about the unique finished products and vision of this project).
During a bathroom remodeling project, great things can happen when contractors, suppliers and homeowners work together on design and delivery. Tina Crabb, of Black Hawk Colorado, was looking to give a facelift to a master bathroom in a home she and her husband purchased 15 years ago. The old bathroom was dated and the jetted spa tub took up too much room and was seldom used.
In Part 1 of this series learn how Tina, in conjunction with Jeff Pettus (owner of general contracting company Snowline Designs) and Ray Visco (owner of Visco Tile and Stone), identified and used innovative bathroom accessories and other products to create an impressive bath design which combined dramatic style and long term functionality (note: Part 2 of this series focuses on the quality driven installation approach used Jeff and Ray to make sure the project lasts).
Our aging housing stock in the United States is not prepared to accommodate our aging population. No place is this more evident than in bathrooms. Many homes built before the 1970’s have small 5’ x 7’ bathrooms with combination tub/showers which are difficult and dangerous for older people (and those with mobility challenges) to get into. Check out the video below and read the 5 steps to convert a bathtub into a wheelchair accessible shower to eliminate the worries associated with climbing into a tub.
If you live in California being thoughtful about space is essential whether you’re remodeling or adding a room addition. John W. of Simi Valley California used careful planning and a high level of construction skills to add a 357 square foot addition which included a new master bathroom, hallway, and office/laundry room. In the article below learn about some of the features (both seen and unseen) that John included that not only works efficiently and effectively – but also looks great as well.
“Our small 5’ x 7’ bathroom was in need of a major overhaul. The toilet didn’t flush well, the cast iron tub didn’t drain properly and the finish on the tub was peeling off, and the pink and gray tiles created an outdated look. A few cosmetic touches just wasn’t going to cut it, said Margie Kalkbrenner of Parma Ohio.” The Kalkbrenner’s not only wanted a bathroom that was nice to look at, but also one that used high quality construction methods to ensure the long term performance of the space (with an eye towards keeping the budget in check as well).
Learn below how Margie and Carl Kalkbrenner (with the assistance of Cleveland Design and Remodeling) turned this small space into one that Margie says feels like a fancy hotel today.
“I love this shower so much I don’t want to get out of it!” exclaimed Devah Young of Traverse City Michigan. When Devah and Tom Young decided to remodel their bedroom and bathroom they had already renovated every other room of their home – they were no strangers to the remodeling process!
For this project their goals where to (1) make the spaces easier and safer to live in, (2) provide some unusual touches to make the project distinctively their own (3) to use materials which would perform well over the long run – all while doing the project at a cost effective price. Learn below how Devah and Tom were able to achieve these goals.
“I really needed to ditch that ugly shower door. The one piece fiberglass shower surround had a flimsy framed shower door which was to tough to clean and rusted,” said Debbie Kee about her bathroom in Lincoln, Delaware.
The door dilemma started a one year Internet research project for Debbie to find a stylish, low maintenance alternative to transform this shower space and her bathroom. Learn below how Debbie (in conjunction with Innovate Building Solutions and her contractors Stu Welch and Barry) used a glass block shower kit and DIY shower wall panels to create a easy to clean and good looking walk in shower.