Using Reclaimed Wood in Home Remodels

Using reclaimed wood in home remodels has been an on-trend design element for a few years now. It is an idea that appeals to a lot of people for reasons that extend beyond being solely conscious about the environment. One major benefit is the warmth it adds, as well as texture and character to the look of your home. It can instantly add an aged patina to a brand-new kitchen.

Reclaimed wood has a natural warmth to it that will add balance to an Industrial or Modern-style home.  Each piece of wood is unique with its’ inherent qualities and the natural weathering of the boards. Sliding barn doors, accent walls clad in wood, and ceiling beams are especially popular and it looks as though they will remain so for quite a while. Interior designers are seeing an increase in the number of clients requesting the addition of reclaimed wood into their new remodel. Here are a few things you should know about using reclaimed wood to make your newly remodeled space even more visually interesting.

Old but Not Unusable

The idea of using wood from an old building or shipping crate might lead to some worry about rot or insect damage. Reclaimed wood should always be thoroughly examined for those issues prior to use.  Not all reclaimed wood is equal in its properties.  Old-growth timber generally is denser than new wood harvested from younger trees. Therefore, it would be much better suited for a humid part of the home.  Teak, considered the most rot-resistant wood, is highly resistant to weather and moisture. Along with old-growth cypress, teak is an exceptional wood for use in the damp areas, such as a master bath.

Reclaimed wood may need refinishing and will require some amount of routine maintenance, but it can be well worth the extra effort and expense. One additional perk, by using reclaimed instead of new wood, you will not subject yourself and your family to the potentially dangerous off-gassing from a VOC (Volatile Organic Compound) which is found in new wood.

Other Notable Points

Even your own home can be a source of used wood if you are removing old cabinets or shelves. A big reason for the appeal of reclaimed wood is the fascinating details it contains. Odd knots, nail holes, and even the imperfections contribute to the character of the pieces. You may be lucky enough to find a rare species of reclaimed wood no longer being harvested. You will usually find reclaimed wood in different lengths and widths, but this is also considered a visual bonus.

Using reclaimed wood does come with a few challenges. Usually, it is best to have a professional deal with this material, even if you are an experienced do-it-yourselfer since many of the pieces are incredibly old, some more than a hundred years. Many pieces of old wood may contain nails or screws that must be removed before refinishing.

Using Reclaimed Wood

You can use reclaimed wood in any part of a home remodeling project that requires this material. Think about an interesting, one-of-a-kind table made from a vintage door. Sturdy and attractive shelves and cabinets can be constructed, as well. Repurposing wood to make your floors will significantly raise your costs, especially here in the southwest, where we have no 150-year-old barns to salvage!

If you have your heart set on the look of reclaimed wood floors, you have two options. You may want to consider using new wood, stain it to achieve the same look, and save yourself some money. The second option would be to use a porcelain plank tile flooring that resembles barn wood. Tile is more durable and less expensive. An accent wall of reclaimed wood would not be as expensive as doing all the flooring and would add a lot of visual interest and a sense of history to your home.

Where to Use Reclaimed Wood

In the kitchen, we would caution you to be careful with where you place wood in relation to wet areas. Using wood for a small butcher block counter is one thing, but having all your counters constructed of wood will be a maintenance challenge. These countertops would have to be refinished every few years, especially near the sink area. Spills would need to be wiped up immediately. This is definitely not a countertop material for everyone!

Some of our clients have asked about using reclaimed wood as their backsplash material. Again, we would caution you about the extra upkeep. It can be done; however, you would need to have the backsplash sealed multiple times with a lacquer type sealant. In a sleek industrial style kitchen, for instance, as a nice contrast, you may want to add open shelving made from reclaimed wood. Pairing reclaimed wood with other salvaged items like a vintage sink also adds drama and interest to your new space.

How about the Living Areas: Great Room, Bedroom, or Entry?

The Great Room is an excellent place to add an accent wall of reclaimed wood.  If you have a fireplace, a reclaimed wood mantle adds warmth and texture to the room. The master bedroom is a great place to add an accent wall of reclaimed wood, you may not even need to use a headboard.  In addition, an entry or a dining room is also a perfect place to add an accent wall of barn wood.

One other thing to be aware of when working with wood, it will swell and contract depending on the ambient temperature and the amount of humidity in the air. It is important to use a flexible silicone caulking for installation purposes.

 

Let Us Help You Love Your Home Again

As a home remodeler in the Greater Phoenix Area, we will help you do the homework to make the best decisions regarding your remodel.  If using reclaimed wood, we will make sure it goes in the right areas and make is visually stunning! Ready? Call us at (480)895-3442 to schedule your free 60-minute in-home or virtual consultation to get started! Our award-winning design team and craftsmen are ready to make your vision for your dream remodel a reality.

Check out our portfolio here!

 

 

Creating Space We Can Enjoy

As 2020 settles in to be an extraordinary year with unprecedented times, there is a desire to seek out beauty and to find the positive in our lives. And nothing helps more to delight us than design and creating a space we can enjoy.  This year we are exploring bold new creations and unique possibilities regarding our homes. It is the year to be free, experimental, and create new things and reinvent not only yourself but your home. So many trends, some new and others coming back into style, for home renovations are being seen on a regular basis. Here are 8 impressive and unique remodeling ideas, the best part about most of these, they are relatively inexpensive to accomplish even when you are sheltering in place!

8 renovating and decorating ideas in creating a space we can enjoy

  1. Empty space under your stairs? Turn it into a home for your dog, a playhouse for your child, a book nook or even a storage closet.
  2. Decorate your boring blank walls. If you are tired of plain old walls or floors, just add stenciled art, stamps, lace or even paper art to add character to your plain surface.
  3. Put in a hammock where there’s space. Here is one of the craziest ideas that produces amazing results. If you have an extremely high ceiling in your home or empty space above your staircase, simply add a sturdy hammock across the area. Instantly create a space to relax or even sleep.
  4. Wide-open spaces. Turn an empty room into a home mini cinema or entertainment center that you and your guests will absolutely adore. You can even turn that room into a pillow room, where you can relax and read or even sleep depending on the types and size of pillows you have in the room.
  5. Create an indoor pit: While renovating, create a “pit-like” area in your living room; this area can be a hollowed-out area in the ground, much like an indoor pool. This will be turned into a conversation pit when sofas or pillows are added to it. This may not be everyone’s taste, but if you have space, it can turn a room into a major conversation piece.
  6. Create a unique space: Create a hidden room behind a movable staircase or bookcase for escaping into your own private study when you need time alone. Search online for unique ideas that you are certain to fall in love with and give us a call.
  7. Make your walls magnetic: This will make it easier to hang items and it removes the need for unsightly screws and hooks. Do not go for the cheapest option if you use metallic wall boards; choose the sturdiest and most durable option instead.
  8. Utilize your kitchen island for storage: Another unique renovation idea is to place a mini-fridge or wine rack in your kitchen island. Also, consider putting the trash and recycling in the kitchen island. Add trap doors at the top of the island for access.

These are just a few amazing renovation ideas to try next time you are remodeling your home. Do not let your remodeling ideas be limited by tradition; think bold and unique. Contact us at 480-895-3442 if you are interested in remodeling your home and adding to the unique appeal you enjoy from your living spaces.

Peruse our portfolio for more ideas for creating spaces that will make you enjoy your home again!

 

6 BATHROOM UPGRADES FOR YOUR REMODELING PROJECT

Bathrooms are one of our most used spaces but can be a tricky space to upgrade or update. With unmovable fixtures and often tight footprints, options can seem limited at first glance. With a little creativity, though, you can add style and bring your bathroom up to date. We’ve put together a list of 6 bathroom upgrades and ideas that will transform your bathroom and make your bathroom remodeling project a success!

6 Bathroom Upgrades and Ideas

Hide the Toilet

If you’re working with a larger, master bathroom, a half wall can provide a new look and add style while creating a discreet nook for the toilet. A piece of furniture like an armoire or dresser can also create a functional and stylish barrier without the need for framing.

Update Your Surfaces

Bathroom surfaces contribute to your overall look while also taking a lot of wear and tear. Changing out your tile can drastically change the look of your bathroom. Look for larger tiles to minimize grout lines, which will make cleaning and upkeep easier.

Modernize Your Shower

Many people don’t make use of their bathtubs. Why not remove the tub altogether and create a large, luxurious shower? Body sprays, overhead rain showerheads, and even steam generators can upgrade your shower experience.

Create Space on Your Vanity

Bathrooms with double ‘his and hers’ sinks can be updated to create storage space. Getting a new countertop with a single sink can drastically change the look of the room while maximizing counter space for storage and décor.

Light it Up

Utilizing different types of fixtures in your bathroom can do a lot to brighten and update the space. In addition to overhead lights, sconces or other vertical fixtures on either side of the sink or vanity will provide even lighting for beauty routines or shaving.

Think Outside the Box

Replace mirrors and hardware with vintage brass for a chic, homey look, or with chrome to make your more bathroom modern. When shopping for tile and fixtures, look for something that suits your style and personality – even if it comes from outside the bathroom section of the store. Break the rules.

Bonus Tip:  Remember when you’re upgrading and updating your bathroom to draw in design and style elements from the rest of your home. Having a functional bathroom doesn’t have to mean having a boring one!

Give us a call at Tri-Lite Builders at (480) 895-3442 if you’re in the greater Phoenix area and planning to remodel your bathroom in the near future. We’ll schedule a virtual or in-home consultation to help you design the perfect bathroom with amazing upgrades and style.  Explore our portfolio of bathroom remodels for ideas here!

Ten Trends for Kitchen Design in 2020

Kitchen Trends for 2020

Kitchen Design Has Come a Long Way

Kitchen design has come a long way in the last 20 years. We’ve seen some pretty amazing trends, but there are some trends that come and go pretty quickly when people realize they can’t complement their cobalt blue refrigerator, range, and dishwasher for more than a couple of years.  We have had our eye on a few trends that we will happily take into 2020 and beyond.  What we love is an updated classic design for kitchens being amped up in the glamour factor without making you feel out of place having coffee in a bathrobe.

Sleek Kitchen Design with Sleek Cabinetry

Flat-faced cabinets and low-profile handles help to create a very sleek kitchen appearance. By using less crown molding on the tops of the upper cabinets helps achieve that look!  It also gives more storage space to the cabinets.

Darker and Thinner Countertops

With natural materials and earth tones taking over the entire home design, kitchens are doing the same.  Countertops are no longer two or three inches thick. Thinner materials are lightweight but just as durable. One-and-a-half-inch thick granite is more standard and three-quarter inch thick quartz works well for modern style kitchens. What’s new, is dark natural woods like walnut!

Matching Countertop and Backsplash

Extending the countertop material up the backsplash streamlines the number of materials in a kitchen creating a clean and contemporary look.

Double Islands

Expanding a kitchen’s function and maintain kitchen flow, double islands in the kitchen can be an integral feature.  The area is divided between meal prep and serving or gathering.  Add another sink and function is doubled!

Gravity Defying Islands

Maximizing the sense of clean, open space within a smaller kitchen have been drawn to gravity-defying islands. With these unique islands, the functional elements of the kitchen recede to reveal more space and become an extension of the architecture itself.  (Think less bulk underneath the island’s countertop.)

Steel Hoods

Kitchen hoods are moving away from stainless steel and basic painted wood.  Implementing steel and plasterwork into the design makes the steel hood a focal point and conversation pieces for the kitchen.

Warm Finishes

The time for grey and white kitchens is giving way to warm finishes.  When done well, wood cabinetry can be modern and fresh.

Open Shelving for Decor

There has been a long-running trend of open shelving for plates and glassware but now the possibilities are expanding!   Open shelving is displaying antique cookware, gilded vintage glasses and copper pots to blend the old world with modern appliances.

Task Lighting and Natural Lighting

Overhead lighting just isn’t enough light to illuminate food preparation areas sometimes, so this is where we rely on strategically placed task lighting. Under-cabinet lighting, as well as pendant lighting, are very popular options for task lighting.  The addition of windows above or below cabinetry or in the eat-in-kitchen nook brings in a great amount of natural lighting. Many homeowners enjoy the addition of windows or skylights because they also improve the curb appeal of the home.

Pull-out Cabinet Storage

Lower cabinets are often dark and dishes tend to become lost in the abyss. Stop losing dishes, and install pull-out cabinet shelving or better yet, deep pot drawers instead of stationary shelves.  Nothing is more convenient as well as better looking than including built-in trash and recycle containers. Installing them where they are easy to access from your prep area makes your work in the kitchen that much easier.

Greater Phoenix Area Remodelers

Call Tri-Lite Builders at (480) 895-3442 for a free 60-minute consultation to begin your kitchen remodel! Our designers and craftsmen would love the opportunity to show you how we can turn your existing kitchen into an amazing room that you’ll never want to leave. Peruse our featured projects to see some of our award-winning kitchens remodels.

 

Reimagine Your Space With Reclaimed Materials

Stardust is a material reuse organization local to the Phoenix metro area.  Stardust’s mission is driven by their vision of a future without waste; a sustainable community where resources are reused or redistributed.  For the past 20 years, they have rallied behind reducing landfill waste with a simple call to action: Starve the Landfill.  This led them to provide quality reclaimed materials to thousands of customers and diverting more than 80 million pounds of usable materials from piling up landfills.   Stardust has locations where you can donate your materials as well as shop their materials.  Learn more about Stardust here.  If you think you’d like to follow this green trend, as your remodeler, we’d love to help you reimagine your space!

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