Posted in Bathroom Organization, Faucets, Kitchen Automation, New Products

10 ‘gee-whiz’ products that will rocket your kitchen into the future

Wondering what’s the buzz on new kitchen technology? Check out this great little article on MSN, “10 ‘gee-whiz’ products that will rocket your kitchen into the future”, by Christopher Sololmon, to see what’s the latest in forward thinking technology for the kitchen. When I was contacted by Chris Solomon in January, I was happy to contribute my opinion on the Anvil Motion for the article and pleased to see another item that has been on my radar for the last year was also included in the article. I talked about Anvil Motion back here and Delta Touch 20 technology here, herehere, and here.  Happy to be your bird-dog on hot new items. Enjoy the article.

Neat ideas! 

Also, pleased to see another nifty new item, Drawer Vac, made the list too. When you see the article link at MSN, you will see it’s useful application for kitchen clean up, but I have another useful idea for vacuums. How about bathroom clean up? I can tell you that some of my most creative inspirations come from the most mundane tasks, one of them happens to be blow drying my very thick hair. I have a lot of hair and lose lots of it every time I brush. I hate seeing hair on the floor and hate even more the time it takes to sweep up. I am also a neat freak, so I needed a way to make bathroom clean up easier in the morning. Here is my own neat idea for keeping the bathroom tidy in the morning. Install a roll out tray inside a vanity cabinet and install a portable hose vacuum. Power up, grab the hose and floor clean up is a snap! It’s a quick fix to a messy situation in the bathroom, it’s even more convenient if you can have an outlet installed inside the cabinet. If you can’t afford to install an automated toekick vac, this would be the ideal solution. So far, I am happy with my low tech vacuum fix. Hair and dust bunnies be gone! Clean up made simple. Your family will thank you for making clean up easier.    

Posted in Alternative Backsplash Materials, Back splashes, Caesarstone, Counter tops, New Products

What’s on my radar today: CaesarStone

This past week I had the pleasure of learning about CaesarStone’s latest quartz surface, Motivo™, at a local NKBA chapter meeting generously hosted by Mitrani Shower Doors and Caesarstone.  Motivo is a textured embossed quartz surface available in two textures, Lace and Crocodile, that can be used in wall panels, furniture, counters and more. Viewing a small sample does not do it justice. It must be seen in a large application. In my local area, Mitrani Shower Doors, in Woodland Hills has two large installation shown in their shower displays. The texture resembles the authentic pattern found on a crocodile. Stunning.

Shown above: Crocodile 3100C.

Posted in New Products, Rain Heads, Shower Heads

Lumiere Circolare Floral

Yesterday I asked if you 
could guess what this was in this photo.
If you guessed a rain head, you get a gold star. 

The Lumiere Circolare Rain Canopy by Jaclo is composed of a patterned semi-transparent cover that is available in several different designs and colors for a range of options that effortlessly meld into their setting.

Actually this is an interesting idea of adding light through the rain head fixture. Very clever. More patterns can by found at

Lumiere Circolare Floral


  • 12″ Diameter Rain Canopy with 228 Easy clean, replaceable, rubber jets for full rain effect
  • 12″ drop from ceiling
  • ½” male IPS inlet connection at ceiling
  • Lit internally by LED lights
  • Floral pattern available in:
  • Black: (12R-LF-101)
  • Silver: (12R-LF-102)

Prices start at $4,500. 

The second item featured in the top photo is JACLO’s Dream Light Rain Canopy. It enables you to experience revitalizing color while fulfilling a daily ritual. The futuristic design of this lit Rain Canopy features LED lights, which illuminate the falling water. The lights can be programmed to turn on manually with the flip of a switch or they can start automatically whenever the shower is turned on. Featuring a full rain spray, the canopy can be customized with fixed colored lights in white, blue, amber, red, green or warm white. 

FACTS: 16″ x 20″ Rettango dream light rain canopy


  • 16″x20″ rectangular rain canopy with 149 easy clean replaceable rubber jets for full rain spray effect
  • Brass construction with surface or flush mount to ceiling. ½” male IPS inlet connection at ceiling
  • 12 low voltage, direct current LED lights with 110V AC input voltage (transformer included)
  • Single color, fixed lighting comes on when water comes on
  • LED lights available in:
  • White (standard) (-013)
  • Blue (-015)
  • Amber (-016)
  • Red (-017)
  • Green (-018) 

Prices Start at $8,900
* CE approved

Now why can’t hotel rooms install these features in the guest rooms? 
Posted in New Products, Working with a Contractor

Consumers Report: News from the 2010 International Builders Show

Here is a terrific invention for taking additional security measures while remodeling. Consumer Reports the following: “Schlage has unveiled an improved rekeying process for its SecureKey door locks, which is designed to let you safely grant temporary access to guests or contractors without having to change the lock afterward.” For the full article, please click on the link below the video.

Schlage Secure Key

Posted in Accessable Design, Home Automation, Kitchen Automation, Luxury Kitchens, Modern Kitchens, New Products

Fully Automated Cabinets

Just when I thought I have seen everything, the latest innovations in kitchen automation never ceases to amaze me. Anvil Cabinet and Mill, a long time leading provider of custom cabinetry, recently launched Anvil Motion, the world’s first fully automated cabinetry system. For centuries, cabinets have opened with a hinged, swinging motion.

Not so with Anvil Motion’s patent-pending technology, the first system with doors and panels that open on command. Simply wave your hand and cabinet panels and doors rise and fall vertically with precision, concealing or revealing contents. Take a look.

Posted in Electrical outlets, New Products, Unusual design

Concept Outlet Design Saves Power Without Unplugging

Have you heard that the simple act of unplugging electronics and electric equipment not in use can save big on your energy bill? Equipment not in use but still plugged in draws energy in stand-by mode. Freelance designer Yong-jin Kim has come up with an innovative solution. Instead of the hassle of unplugging equipment.  with the simple twist left, the electrical supply is cut off at the receptacle.

Via Design Milk

Posted in Bath tubs, New Products, NKBA Bathroom Planning Guidelines, Safety Features, Universal Design, Unusual design

Oyster Tub By Salvinistile

Size: 70.85″ x 42.15″ x 26.60″
Material: Marble
Design By: Architect Carla Baratelli for Salvinistile
Country: Italy

This is more than just design in marble. As shown from their web site, click the photos to link back to more photos from House 8, this is European designed “concept living”. Shapes influenced by nature is a trend we are seeing more of in sinks and tubs.

Great design if you are Michael Phelps, limber enough to move in and out of water like a fish. For those of us who are aging less than gracefully, planning a design with safety factors in mind is critical.

The National Kitchen & Bath Association developed the Bathroom Planning Guidelines with Access Standards to provide designers with good planning practices that consider the needs of a range of users.

Grab Bars: Plan grab bars to facilitate access to and maneuvering within the tub and shower areas.

Tub and shower walls should be prepared (reinforced) at time of construction to allow for installation of grab bars to support a static load of 250 lbs.

Grab bars should be placed at least 33” – 36” above the floor.

Grab bars must be 11⁄4” to 2” in diameter and extend 11⁄2” from the wall.

Access Standard

Recommended: Walls throughout the bathroom should be prepared (reinforced) at time of construction to allow for installation of grab bars to support a minimum of 250 lbs. of pressure.

Grab bars should be placed according to the needs and height of the user, particularly near the tub/shower and the toilet.

Code Reference:

  • Grab bars should be installed at the tub, shower, and toilet according to the following:
  • Bathtubs with permanent seats: Two horizontal grab bars (a1) should be provided on the back wall, one between 33” and 36” above the floor and the other 9” above the rim of the bathtub (a2). Each grab bar should be no more than 15” from the head end wall or 12” from the foot end wall. A grab bar 24” long should be provided on the foot end wall at the front edge of the bathtub. (ANSI 607.4.1)
  • Bathtubs without permanent seats: Two horizontal grab bars should be provided on the back wall, one between 33” and 36” above the floor and the other 9” above the rim of the bathtub (a3). Each grab bar should be at least 24” long and no more than 24” from the head end wall or 12” from the foot end wall. A grab bar 24” long should be provided on the foot end wall at the front edge of the bathtub. A grab bar 12” long should be provided on the head end wall at the front edge of the bathtub (a4). (ANSI 607.4.2)

For More information:
Salvini Stile
Michael Phelps Photo Credit Link