Posts filed under ‘remodel’

Tile Design vs. Electrical Outlets & Switches

We get asked this great question quite regularly:  

“I LOVE my new tile, but I need some advice…What should I do with the electrical outlets that fall within the kitchen backsplash area?”  

Good news!  We’ve got several creative solutions for you – yay!!!

These little necessary items can possibly ruin your beautiful, and often pricey backsplash!  We are confident that if you consider the locations ahead of time, you will improve the finished look of your kitchen or bathroom.🙂

Details on outlets…

It’s required by law that you have electrical outlets within your kitchen – which is a good thing!

Your kitchen has many electrical needs:  major appliances, small appliances, built-in appliances, lighting, exhaust fans, and basically anything you might want to plug in or switch on while you’re in there.

In regards to your kitchen or bathroom, the National Electric Code requires:

  • Small appliance circuits feeding countertop receptacle outlets are required to be Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter (GFCI) protected
  • Any countertop wider than one foot requires a receptacle outlet
  • Receptacle outlets must be installed every four linear feet at minimum – more is totally fine too
  • Countertops separated by range cook top, refrigerators, or sinks are considered separate countertop spaces
Modwalls_Counter Top Appliances

Examples of kitchen appliances in need of electrical outlets.

Are you in the planning phase of your new kitchen or bath remodel?  

If you are planning your kitchen or bath remodel, congrats(!), you are thinking ahead!  Here are some helpful questions you can ask yourself and discuss with your electrician regarding your kitchen or bath’s electrical needs:

  • What fixed/portable appliances do you plan to install/have in your kitchen? What are the locations and their power requirements?
  • What kind of lighting do you want/need: Ceiling? Under cabinet? Toe kick? Pendant or chandelier? Recessed? Surface Mount? Ceiling fan?
  • What kind of lighting controls do you need?
  • Where do you want your light switches and appliance outlets?
  • What materials/installation practices do you need to comply with National Electric Code requirements? Hint: ask your electrician
  • Do you have special requirements due to disabilities and/or the Americans with Disabilities Act?
  • What are the brand specification of all fixtures you want?  Have your electrician check these out too.

After you discuss your electrical needs with your electrician and have a final layout in mind, the electrical outlets and switches can be located and installed.  Don’t worry if you already have your outlets in place, it’s really easy to move them around and make adjustments before the installation of your backsplash.

There are several different ways to approach this without ruining your backsplash with a bunch of ugly, poorly  placed outlets and switches.  Here are some creative solutions as to how you can address the outlets & switches within your backsplash.

Implementing Creative Solutions…

#1 – Flip your outlets horizontally to coordinate with the pattern of your backsplash (but if your backsplash has a vertical pattern to it, keep you outlets vertical too)

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Horizontal Outlet Sketch
Manhattan Ave Residence - modern - bathroom - los angeles - Michael Lee Architects
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#2 – Install a power strip under your upper cabinets

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Undercabinet Power Strip Sketch
Wyncote home - exterior - eclectic - kitchen - philadelphia - Colleen Steixner
vandyke-39
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#3 – Install the outlets or switches on or within your cabinets…(some additional planning involved).

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Outlet Sketch001_2

Photo by Rockwood Cabinetry

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#4 – Install your outlets where you know you’ll need them!

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Outlet Sketch001

Image 4

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#5 – Install custom pop-up grommet outlets where you know you’ll need them!

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Kitchen Power Grommet - modern - kitchen - los angeles - Doug Mockett & Company, Inc

Find these at www.mockett.com

South Fork Kitchen - eclectic - kitchen - phoenix - Troyer Kitchen and Bath

Find these at www.mockett.com

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#6 – Specify outlet and switch plate covers to coordinate with your material selections: making them a design element instead of an eyesore!

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mendocino kit rspitzer2

1x4 cloud kitchen laura ricks_2

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#7 – [Bathroom specific] – Install the outlets or switches within your bathroom mirror and trim with a mirrored cover…some additional planning involved.  Look closely for them!

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Playhouse_Modwalls Lush 1x4 Sunset

Playhouse_Modwalls_Brio clear peridot

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Q:  Have some other creative outlet and switch solutions?  Share them with us and we’ll add it to this blog! 

Modwalls® has been making Colorful Modern Tile since 2005. We have high end and unique designs that are in stock and available for purchase online 24/7 at modwalls.com  Samples Available and Discounts to the Trade.  Residential, Commercial and Hospitality. Live Your Colors with Modwalls Tile.

January 17, 2016 at 5:27 pm 4 comments

Spring Sale of Glass Subway Tile & Mosaics at Modwalls

Lush Brio Sale 2015

 

Cloud thru Peacock

 

Lush Glass Subway Tile

gardner and rocks ahill_2

5c082-10560998_790732534300737_156446720_n

May 5, 2015 at 3:10 pm Leave a comment

Craftsman Detail = Simplicity, Quality and Passion

semihandmade tileJohn McDonald is the owner of Semihandmade which is an innovative company that makes one-of-a-kind doors for IKEA kitchens, bathroom, closets and media cabinets. Modwalls spoke with John about how he started the company and the best way to incorporate craftsman touches in your remodel.

“I had been in LA for about 13 years working freelance in the film biz doing writing and production (mainly waiting tables).  At 34, I started buying old furniture, refinishing it and selling at swap meets. Then I moved on to making custom furniture and cabinetry.”

John transitioned to making doors from IKEA cabinets about five years ago and because of the demand, his company expanded to include 30 employees. The concept is simple and brilliant. You want that IKEA kitchen but not so crazy about the doors that come with the cabinets? What do you do? Simple:

“You don’t have to buy them,” says John. “All you do is just buy the boxes and hardware and we’ll make the amazing fronts, panels and tops so you get a really custom look for less.”

Rex Rox Lunar SemiHandmadeJohn’s philosophy when it comes to design is to keep it as simple and clean as possible. “I can’t stand precious and overly thought-out.” He’s passionate and opinionated about what he does, which has made his company a success within the industry and a favorite among clients.

“I always make it a point to seek out other companies I like. Modwalls makes a clean  tile product that is really well-made with great colors and excellent customer service. We’ve used their tiles at different design shows to compliment our booths. We also recommend their stuff to clients we think it will appeal to. Some of their new stuff is really amazing!”

So what do you do if you want to incorporate craftsman touches but you’re on a budget?

“The key is trying to have a few nice things you’ll hopefully have for a long time, then building around that.  The fact that IKEA is our platform says all you need to know about us. They’ve got a great system, really solid bones, and they are genius to let people compliment things as they like.”

Teal Agate semihandmadeSo whether it’s colorful ceramic tile or semi-handmade zebrawood cabinets, pick a product you love, a company you believe in, and have fun. Anything else?

“Remodeling is a marathon. Be prepared for that!”

Have a Modwalls’ design question? Ask and we will answer!  www.modwalls.com

 

December 19, 2014 at 9:49 am 1 comment

Modwalls’ People: A Kitchen is More Than a Room.

“He’s learning his colors here.”

Donna Jewell’s kitchen is where her two-and-a-half year old grandson gets to practice his colors.

Clayhaus Ceramic Tile

Clayhaus for Modwalls Ceramic Tile

“He loves the kitchen. He asked me, ‘where did you get all these tiles?’ He points to color and knows the name. He’s getting really good!” Donna’s Georgia home was built in 1983 and she likes to keep it current. Every room has a different feel and style, and she finds inspiration everywhere.

“I have some help, but it’s my own vision. I read a lot and look at a lot of magazines, and in the last few years, I just like colorful things.”

Last April, Donna’s mother passed away and she wanted to honor her.

“She was a home economics teacher and spent a lot of time in the kitchen. I have many fond memories of her here, so when I saw the Modwalls’ tiles in an article in Cooking Light magazine, it just hit me. They were so bright and cheery. I thought, ‘This is it. This is what I’ve been looking for.”

She called Chris at Modwalls who sent her samples and helped determine how much tile she would need and how long it would take.

“She was fantastic. She helped me from beginning to end. I thought it was going to take much longer but one day, I got a surprise phone call saying, ‘Donna, your tile is ready,’ so it was much quicker!”

As Donna puts the finishing touches on the room, she envisions using Modwalls’ tiles to make picture frames to hang on the wall.

“The whole experience with Modwalls was pleasant and fun. Everybody just comments on how wonderful it looks, bold and bright, playful yet classy.”

And what does her family think?

“My husband says it feels like a Florida kitchen. It has a bright and airy feeling. And the other day, I thought, my mother would love my kitchen.”

Do you have a Modwalls’ challenge? Do you have a home project that needs some special attention? Tell us your Modwalls’ story.

November 14, 2014 at 12:01 pm 1 comment

Before and After Bathroom Remodel with Modwalls Tile

Grace Chon recently shared her bathroom redo on Instagram. We love “Before & After” photos; especially when our tile is part of the After!
Shown: Lush blue  glass subway tile in 1×4 Vapor.
Repost from @thegracechon via @igrepost_app, it’s free! Use the @igrepost_app to save, repost Instagram pics and videos, Here’s another before and after, this time of the bathroom. These were shot in the same spot, same time of day! We had a skylight added in because the bathroom used to be such a cave. I do NOT recommend doing a bathroom renovation when you’re 9months pregnant. 😝 #renovation #bathroom #midcenturymodern #rejuvenation #casadechon

November 7, 2014 at 4:14 pm 1 comment

Modwalls People: Classic and Eclectic Meets Modern

Modwalls People: Anita loved her home. It was a Midcentury house remodeled in the 60’s and 70’s. Anita needed tile that would merge the classic and eclectic with modern. Enter Modwalls.

Continue Reading November 5, 2014 at 9:59 am Leave a comment

New Shape In American Made Ceramic Tile: The Wedge By Modwalls

THE WEDGE IS HERE!
Our exclusive new American made addition to our Kiln Ceramic Tile collection. The Wedge is available to order in 75 glossy and matte colors.
Shown: Milk, Splash, Limoncello and Brine.
Buy online or order samples at Modwalls.
“Live Your Colors”

October 29, 2014 at 3:35 pm 1 comment

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Rebecca Lonergan


Founder and Creative Director of modwalls.com, a designer of modern tile with an online showroom at www.modwalls.com. Modwalls are colorful tile designs with a uniquely modern sensibility in a wide range of materials.

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