Pet Friendly Flooring Guide

by raveshowroom
on August 1, 2020
.

They say that a house is not a home without a pet. Pets become beloved members of our family and we do all kinds of things for their happiness and well-being. Whether your pet is older, rambunctious, or an over-eager baby they can still cause damage around the home. They don’t mean it, so we forgive them. (I mean, who could stay mad at that face?) But if you’re doing some renovations or planning a new build, there are options available that will keep a smile on your face and a wag in their tail. We have assigned different flooring categories ‘paw ratings’ 1 to 4 paws, with 4 paws being our top rated pet-friendly products.

Image result for puppies slide on hardwood

Hardwood

There are so many colors, finishes, and different styles of hardwood available and it has become increasingly popular. Something to keep in mind is that while hardwood provides great resale value, as a pet owner you need to know that it can scratch easily under claws and is more absorbent of smells and stains than some of the other options. There are, however, a lot of distressed product lines on the market that help to mask the wear and tear that claws can cause. It is wise to opt for a hardwood that ranks up there on the Janka scale (hardness factor); hickory is an excellent option for pet owners, it is incredibly hard and has grain to distract from wear and tear.

Laminate

Laminate is an affordable hardwood alternative; it is quite durable, but is susceptible to moisture. The surface of a laminate floor is resistant to staining, but you need to be diligent about wiping up spills and accidents as soon as possible to prevent swelling.  Standard moisture tolerance for a laminate floor (before swelling) is usually half an hour max. There are even a few new ‘waterproof’ laminate floors on the market which reduce the issue of swelling. Some pets find laminate floors slippery and seem to have a tough time gaining traction. The 3 major benefits of laminate floors is their budget friendly price point, DIY-friendly installation and the ability to change out damaged boards without calling in an expert. 

Carpet

Carpet offers sound insulation which can be handy if your pet loves to play at night. It has come a long way in the last decade, many new features are available including stain-resistant and odor-resistant options. Shaw Flooring offers a moisture proof blue backing upgrade on many of their carpets, this prevents moisture from wicking through the backing and into the pad or subfloor below. Carpet provides good grip for paws to run and play, and is an excellent product to use on your stairs. Careful with your choice though, some cats just looove to sink their claws into a berber style carpet.  Make sure that you have a scratching post available, so that your kitties won’t take it out on your flooring.  Carpet comes in a wide range of price points and there is something available for every budget.

Tile

Durable and stain resistant, tile will maintain its look and value for a long time. However, some tile can be slippery for paws and can be tough for pets with mobility issues. A great product when it comes to wiping up spills and messes, tile is extremely easy to care for. Tile can be a bit cold on the paws, but there is always the option to heat your floors. To offset the hardness and coolness of your floor, you can always add soft area rugs to offer some reprieve for your furry companion to lounge on.

Vinyl –    

Moisture resistant, stain resistant and more forgiving in terms of hardness; vinyl is one of the top-rated products for pets.  Vinyl comes in a wide range of options varying from plank-style hardwood looks, to tile-look, as well as sheet vinyl (often referred to as lino).  There are also a wide range of prices and quality levels. Your pets will appreciate the warmth underfoot, grip/traction should not be a problem and you will appreciate the ease of cleaning when you opt for vinyl.

Flooring is an important element of your home; it not only has to look great, but encounters more wear and tear than any other finish. Selecting the right product for your home will help to maintain resale value, and offer comfort to your entire family (including your four-legged family members). Be sure to mention your pets to your sales person when shopping for flooring, there are always new innovative products entering the market that are designed with our furry friends in mind.

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Oh Canada: Our Top 5 Canadian Suppliers

by raveshowroom
on July 1, 2020
.

It’s July first, and that means that it’s time to celebrate our beautiful country, the True North, Strong and Free.  To commemorate Canada Day 2020, we are going to highlight some of our valued Canadian suppliers at the Rave Design Showroom.

Vintage Prefinished Hardwood Flooring: 

Vintage is a Canadian hardwood manufacturing company that has been producing high quality flooring products in Quebec and Ontario for over 30 years.  Vintage is on the leading edge of quality and design- their ‘Solid Sawn’ engineered hardwood has been an industry leader in stability and style. When you purchase hardwood flooring from Vintage, you can feel good about supporting a Canadian company that protects our environment through responsible forestry and manufacturing processes. 

image courtesy of Vintage Hardwood Flooring

Maxxmar Window Fashions: 

Maxxmar has been a Canadian industry leader in window coverings since 2007. With innovative designs like their ‘Mandalay Dual Shades’, it is no surprise that they are one of our go-to blind suppliers.  Maxxmar prides itself of offering a vast selection of top-quality products at affordable pricing and to top it off, their products come with eco friendly certification.

image courtesy of Maxxmar Window Fashions

Artcraft Lighting: 

Established in Toronto, in 1955, Artcraft Lighting is a family owned, Canadian lighting company with some impressive staying power! In the lighting world, there is very little Canadian Manufacturing; Artcraft has a featured line that is North American Made.  Artcraft offers fashion forward designs, and always keeping current with the market trends- likely the reason they have such great longevity in the lighting industry, making them a Canadian success story!

image courtesy of Artcraft Lighting

Handstone Furniture: 

When we have clients looking for furniture that can become heirloom pieces, we look no further than Handstone. Handstone opened their doors in 1999 as a one-man show, crafting handmade, solid wood custom furniture in Ontario. They remain a family owned Canadian manufacturer to this day. Their beautiful pieces are customizable and are available by custom order; we adore their dining room suites and bedroom furniture! You will always find their furniture on our showroom floor.

image courtesy of Handstone Furniture

Classic Granite Works: 

Classic Granite Works is a small family owned business that got it’s start in 2005. Initially operating out of Ponoka, AB and eventually expanding and moving their operation to Red Deer in 2016. We trust Classic Granite Works with all of our solid surface countertop jobs, everything from large custom homes to small remnant vanity tops. Classic carries and fabricates more than just granite, they have a large array of quartz suppliers as well. Talk about supporting local, Classic Granite Works are members of our community who support our local charities and employ our fellow Central Albertans. We’re pretty fond of them, in case you can’t tell!

So, there you have it, our top 5 Canadian Suppliers at the Rave Design Showroom. Purchasing from any one of these suppliers helps to keep Canadians employed and supports our economy. You can feel good about your Canadian purchases for many reasons; Canadian companies adhere to our manufacturing and labour laws and guidelines, they give back to Canadian charities, and are known for their high standards for quality products. Buying Canadian is always a win-win!

And in true Canadian fashion, I have to end this blog by saying I’m really SORRY if I missed anyone, we love all of our great suppliers.

Happy Canada Day from everyone at the Rave Design Showroom!

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Design Trends: To Follow, or Not to Follow?

by raveshowroom
on June 8, 2020
.

If there is one thing I have learned over the years, it is that design trends are fleeting. I have seen interior decorating trends flood the market and then fall out of favor as quickly as they hit the scene.  One of the most common statements made by clients, is that they don’t want their space to become dated quickly. Here are some observations I have made when it comes to making décor selections that will stand the test of time.

Rule #1:  If you are seeing a specific trend EVERYWHERE online and on TV, you might want to avoid it.

I have found that when trends/fads are at their peak, you will see them everywhere you look. This is generally a really good indication that it will soon be on the downward swing, with the potential of falling out of favor in the near future. One of the main factors in cutting edge design is designing a space with unique features, something the masses have not yet seen. When a trend becomes incredibly mainstream, it starts to lose its appeal because it is no longer thought of as special. 

An example of a trend that reached incredible popularity and then fizzled out would be wall-to-wall shag carpeting. Shag carpeting had HUGE popularity in the 70’s. As unconventional as the thought of raking your indoor carpets may have been, they had their hay-day in bold red, purple, avocado green and gold.

Most of the clients that lived through the first shag era vowed never to live with it again, however, a new wave of ‘short shag’ carpeting came in the early to mid 2000’s. Our carpet suppliers reinvented the shag carpet, every brand carried an abundance of shag styles in the beginning of the trend. Clients couldn’t get enough, they demanded longer shaggier pile. As the trend carried forth into more and more homes, the novelty started to wear off as homeowners realized that this high-maintenance option was not the easiest to live with and durability just wasn’t there. Production of shag carpet is very limited these days, there are only a hand full of options available and dense high-quality plush carpets have squeezed shag out of the scene.

I personally find that a lot of trends do not follow the cardinal design rule of ‘form follows function’.  Shag carpet is a great example of this. Shag is constructed with long loose filaments; the looser the carpet filaments, the easier it is for dirt to get down into the fiber and wear the carpet out quicker. When a fad gains popularity strictly because of style or a look, unfortunately, I find that there is often a lack of quality in the construction so the product can be affordable enough to reach the masses.

(Shag carpet, up close & personal.)

Rule #2:  If a trend really speaks to you, go for it- but do so cautiously.

Let’s say you are obsessed with Joanna Gaines’ Modern Farmhouse style, and let me reiterate, there is absolutely nothing wrong with this! Modern Farmhouse is a trend that has been in the forefront for several years now, it is casual and a little bit rustic with a polished edge to it. There is nothing wrong with introducing elements of a current décor style into your home; if you love this style, by all means run with it!  I would recommend introducing select furniture pieces, light airy paint colors, add textures and contrasting metals to safely achieve this look. The reason I used the word ‘safely’ is because you can introduce a style without going all in.

Going overboard would be installing shiplap to every single wall and ceiling in your home, tearing out all of your kitchen’s upper cabinets and installing open shelves in their place, and replacing all of your lighting with Edison bulbs for a more rustic look. I’m not saying that the trends I just mentioned are a faux-pas, but you must be mindful about actually living in a home with these features.

(Would your open shelves be this tidy? I know mine wouldn’t!)

Shiplap comes with increased dusting, there are lots of grooves and ledges for dust to collect on- how often are you willing to pull the ladder out to dust all of your walls? An accent wall or ceiling detail would be much more manageable than entire rooms clad in shiplap.

Open shelves in place of upper cabinets photograph beautifully in the design magazines, but these are carefully curated shots; remember that everyday living comes with dust, mismatched dishes and some unavoidable clutter.

Edison bulbs can make for some awesome accent lighting, but are definitely not a good choice for task lighting- they will leave you in the dark.

Quite often, décor styles are romanticized by show homes, magazine spreads and television programs- stop and think about how your home functions before committing. Make changes to your home to reflect your personal style, but be mindful of how easily these can be revamped should you tire of living with this style or should you want to list your home for resale.

Rule #3: There are no rules!

Okay, maybe there are a few rules when it comes to design… like, don’t make design decisions that will put anyone in danger (for example, using a highly polished tile on a shower floor), and don’t ignore local building codes. BUT as far as rules of style go, you are the master of your domain. If you love a trend or style that is not currently being endorsed by the celebrity designers, go with it.  If I offended you by saying that shag carpeting is no longer ‘en vogue’ and you really love the style, add an ultra shaggy area rug to your space! Who am I to tell you what you need or don’t need in your home? The bottom line is, you have to be mindful of quality and function of the products you put into your home. Your space needs to make you happy, and your hard-earned dollar needs to be well spent.

(Like they say, home is where the heart is)

Your home should make you smile when you return home from a day at work, it should be your haven. It is incredibly exhausting (and expensive) to try to keep up with the current home décor trends, and just like shag carpet, these trends will all come full circle and will be in fashion again in the future.

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Weekend Warriors: Updating Your RV

by raveshowroom
on May 1, 2020
.

Camping and Alberta go together like peanut butter and jelly; we are surrounded by beautiful rec areas, have mountains to explore and lakes to enjoy. When you drive through our residential areas, you will see an abundance of campers and RVs in driveways- this is part of our identity, we are weekend warriors!  Every Spring, we get an influx of calls from customers who want to replace their RV flooring or update their finishes, here are some tips of the trade for camper improvements.  

The most common phone call we get before May long weekend, is “HELP! I opened up my camper and my lino was split wide open!” This is a common occurrence, it is partly due to our crazy temperature fluctuations, and partly due to the fact that the sheet vinyl is not full-spread glued during manufacturing.  The vinyl is perimeter fastened, and the extreme cold/warm snaps that we have in the winter months cause the vinyl to shrink and expand rapidly causing the flooring to split. It is rare that these splits can be repaired because of the stretching that happens when they burst, the lino generally needs to be removed and new flooring installed.

What type of flooring should you replace your lino with?

Sheet vinyl or lino is always a safe and affordable bet, but it is not a real do-it-yourself friendly product to install. Don’t be weary of putting the same type of flooring in that originally failed; when we install sheet vinyl, it is full spread glued in place. When the lino is fully fastened it is unlikely that you will ever have another problem with your floor.  There are hardwood patterns, tile patterns, there are even some sheet vinyl products with minimal patterning or bold funky styles.

Luxury Vinyl Plank (or LVP) is another great option. LVP comes in a wide variety of styles; you can buy click floating product, glued-down and even loose-lay options.  When it comes to LVP, we strongly recommend going with glue-down product in 2mm thickness. There are many thick 5mm options on the market, but they are so full of vinyl that they shrink and expand quite rapidly, causing gapping and peaking in the seams. Click options are easy for do-it-yourselfers, but there are several factors that can potentially cause issues. Quite often there is no room for extra thickness in the flooring (do you have a slide that comes in overtop of the area where you are installing the new flooring?) Also, click vinyl products require a gap around room perimeters to allow them to float- there are no baseboards in campers to hide this. It is difficult to complete a clean-looking click vinyl install without adding additional trim around cabinets and walls.

What about your cabinets?

The internet is full of blogs dedicated to camper renos, and one of the most common and dramatic quick fixes is painting the cabinets. You can drastically update your space by painting your cabinets and updating your countertops.  Be sure to take time to properly prep and clean the cabinet faces, speak to your local paint experts about the best product to use for your application. As far as countertops go, there are lots of options out there! There are premade wood/butcherblock countertop options on the market, this works great if you have a straight run of cabinets and is very DIY friendly. You could stop by your local granite shop to inquire about quartz or granite for the space- come armed with measurements, there may be a remnant calling your name at a discounted price. You could price out a new laminate countertop, these usually come in premade lengths as well. I’ve also seen some incredible epoxy overlays, as well as tiled countertop transformations. Speaking of tile transformations, don’t forget to add a tiled splash to your countertop for extra pizzazz!  

What about the carpet areas?

Carpet can easily be replaced, but again, it is not the easiest DIY project. We recommend going with a hard-wearing, low-pile carpet that will stand up to the wear and tear that comes along with camping. Carpet replacement is relatively inexpensive, but you can save yourself some of the install costs by removing all non-fixed furniture from your camper and by removing existing carpet prior to bringing your trailer in for install. Sometimes you can find the perfect piece of remnant carpet for a bargain price.

Tired of the factory supplied curtains & bedspreads?

Most RVs come with upholstered valences over the windows, these are some of the quickest items to show their age… and to make your space feel out of date. In a lot of cases, you can order new upholstery weight fabric and glue/staple this directly over the factory valences for an instant rejuvenation. When it comes to bedding, I am a big fan of duvets with duvet covers. The best part about duvet covers is that they are easy to launder after a weekend of camping.  There are tons of duvet cover sets on the market, or if you are thrifty, you can even make your own duvet cover by sewing two top sheets together and adding buttons or ties to one end. This is another instant refresh that shows your personality without breaking the bank. Extra bonus points if you add a snuggly throw to the end of the bed!

We love to see how people personalize their campers and RVs!  It’s a great way to inject your personality into your home away from home. Don’t forget to add artwork and personal touches that will make you happy to be inside in the event of a soggy or snowy May long weekend.

Happy Camping!

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Staying in: How to Redesign Your Space

by raveshowroom
on April 1, 2020
.

Right now, people all over the world are spending more time in their homes than ever before. People are working from home, spending their time indoors, reconnecting with their immediate family as well as their interior spaces.  Since so many are home-bound, people are looking around their homes and scratching their heads asking how they can make improvements to their space (while staying home).

Well, here are a few tips to give you inspiration, get you motivated and enjoying your home.

First, what is the purpose of the room you are standing in?  Does it work as an office, family room, dining area or maybe a flex area?

Keep the layout simple, it will make the room much more user friendly and feel more spacious. When keeping it simple, think de-cluttering. Set yourself a day when you can remove most of the accessories and small furniture pieces from the room. Give the room a good cleaning, repaint if necessary to freshen the walls. Don’t forget those windows, clean the blinds and drapery if you have them.  Now you are ready with a fresh clean slate.

 If you currently have an eye sore in your room, for example a radiator or old wood paneling, try painting these pieces out the same color as the walls to minimize them. 

Scale or size of your furniture is very important.  If you have a large sofa, for example, you don’t want to add a tiny chair or side table.   With a large sofa, a large chair and larger scale end table in your room, this may be enough to make your room look full

Are a few new pieces of furniture in the budget? Make your room feel like each piece has been lovingly collected by mixing leg styles. Spend your time at home browsing furniture online and narrowing your style and options down (pay close attention to dimensions and scale). Choosing similar finishes on the legs will pull the pieces together. A simple tapered leg on a sofa in espresso and turned legs on a chair in the same finish will achieve the look. Seat height is also very important. They should all be close to the same height. Remember, family gatherings will be permitted again in the future; when everyone gathers, you don’t want Grandma sitting close to the ground while Uncle Dave is sitting part way up the wall!

Different texture adds interest to the eye; picture a tweed chair, leather ottoman and coarse woven cotton drapery fabrics. If you want to mix patterns, think small, medium and large scale prints. Picture a small dot, medium size florals and large buffalo check pattern. You probably use the same idea when mixing clothing, and don’t even realize it.  

Have you created a focal point in the room? If you are lucky enough to have a fireplace, you already have one. So, what to do if you don’t?  You can create a focal point by something as simple as painting a feature wall a darker color than on the other walls.  A more modern approach is having all the walls painted the same color, then add either a large piece of art work or cabinet.  You may also try adding wall paper or wood paneling to the wall (and yes, for us old timers “IT’S BACK!“)

What about your lighting needs for the room?  There may be general lighting in the ceiling but if the room used for reading, crafts, etc. task lighting is very important.  A table lamp or floor lamp, maybe wall sconces work great for ambient lighting.  The shades are something a lot of people overlook as they may change color when the light is turned on.  If replacing a shade on an old lamp, think scale; will that size and shape of shade fit the size of the lamp?

So, you now have a feature wall, you have furniture that is the right scale and fabric selection, it’s now time for the finishing touches. Simple side drapery panels soften a room and the hard edges of the windows.  If your blinds are broken in anyway, it’s time to replace them. This is a great time to have some fun with fabrics. Fabrics can add color and or texture to a room, whether it’s your window coverings or simple toss cushions.   A new area rug can add the little bit of color you are looking for. You can have furniture feet all on the rug or front feet on, or just a small area rug under a coffee table. When considering your area rug size, think to yourself ‘do I want my floors to show or not?’ Remember those accessories you cleared out when decluttering? Bring a few (emphasis on few) back into the room.  A couple of well-chosen pieces is a better choice than filling the room again with those treasures that need to be dusted.  You don’t need to get rid of your treasures, just store them away for now. In a years’ time pull them back out, you may not hold the same attachment to them after a year and be willing to let them go and let someone else enjoy them.   

Greenery is back!  Whether it’s one large plant or a few smaller ones, plants bring the outdoors in as well as filter the air. You can research on line to find plants that don’t need a lot of maintenance. Succulents can live for a long time for those of us who tend to forget about watering.

Art work is so subjective. I was lucky enough at one time to listen to an art expert talk about investing in art.  His words have stuck with me all these years. ‘Buy art that you love. Every time you walk by the picture or framed piece it should bring a smile to your face. Don’t worry if you think it matches your room it’s the smile that is important.’

By the time you have gone through this checklist, your space should have taken shape and pulled together nicely. The satisfaction that you will have in knowing that you pulled this off will be the best part; now kick those feet up & relax, being indoors won’t be so bad when you love your thoughtfully designed space.  

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Choosing the Right Product: Flooring

by raveshowroom
on March 1, 2020
.

Walking into a store with a large range of flooring options can be totally overwhelming.  Here at Central Alberta Tile One we can help walk you through the selection process, by sharing our product knowledge and making it easier to pinpoint the type of flooring to best suit your needs.

There are a few different things to consider when choosing flooring for your home:  Budget, durability and style to name a few.  You also need to remember that there are pros and cons for all flooring options on the market.

There are a large variety of products that will fit into just about every budget and style – Hardwood, laminate, tile, Luxury vinyl plank, and carpet.

LUXURY VINYL PLANK is one of the most popular products on the market today.  It is highly durable and very cost effective making it a great choice for the family with children, pets or just an active home life with lots of traffic who love the look of hardwood but need something that will hold up better to the wear and tear.  There are lots of patterns, colors and styles.  LVP not only boasts durability it is a waterproof option making it wonderful for bathrooms, kitchens, laundry rooms, etc.

A stunning LVP herringbone installation for Alair Homes

HARDWOOD is still considered one of the most desirable floor coverings.  It brings value and beauty to your home.  You do have to be aware that most hardwoods will scratch and dent much easier than look-alike products.  A large number of the hardwoods today are being manufactured with hand scraping, wire brushing and distressing which makes it easier to repair and disguise the accidental mishaps that may occur. Hardwood enhances any room and helps to accent other wood finishes in your home.

LAMINATE is a less expensive option to hardwood that maintains the ‘look’ of hardwood.  It is made with a high density fiber board, a photo layer topped with a very durable wear layer, making it less likely to scratch under the same circumstances as traditional hardwood.  There are also a huge amount of different styles making the selection of the perfect flooring a little easier. Laminate is installed using the click method making it relatively easy for the do-it-yourselfer!!

DIY Friendly Laminate Flooring

TILE is one of the most durable, hard and scratch resistant floor coverings on the market.  There is a vast variety of sizes, shapes and styles of tile, making design options endless.  Sleek and modern to classic and traditional, you will be able to find just what you are looking for.  Tile is a great option for high traffic areas but it does come with a few draw backs.   Tile is quite hard and cold.  We have underfloor heating options that can be installed to rectify that problem and a beautiful area rug can warm up and soften to help complete the room.

CARPET is still, and will always be a great way to create a warm and cozy space.  There are post production stain treatments giving carpet superior stain resistance, odor blockers, etc.  Regular cleaning and care helps maintain the life of your carpet. The nice thing with carpet is that is absorbs sound and is soft to the touch. There are a wide array of patterns, colors and styles of carpet, once again making the selection process fairly uncomplicated.

Cozy & comfy carpet

Each of the flooring types have quite a range of price points, so finding one to fit with in your budget should be relatively painless.

Creating a space that you and your family will love should be fun and easy. Just remember there is no right or wrong!!

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How to Design a Lighting Plan

by raveshowroom
on February 1, 2020
.

Building a new home can be overwhelming at times, that’s for sure!  So many choices and decisions and of course, you want everything to come together perfectly.

Here are a few questions you can ask yourself to help your lighting plan come together more effectively and in turn, it should make the selection process more enjoyable.

What type of lighting is required for each space?

  • Task Lighting: Do you require light in an area to perform a specific task? These lights usually blend into their surroundings & do not make a visual impact; the biggest impact will be the light that they emit.
    • The use of pot lights or LED discs are excellent ways to achieve effective task lighting in almost any room.  It is recommended to space them anywhere from 4’ to 6’ apart depending on the diameter of the disc.
    • Track lights can be an effective option when a more directional form of lighting is wanted.  It allows corners and more difficult areas of a room to be reached from one central lighting location.
    • Under cabinet lights are a great way to add task lighting to prep areas, work spaces or desks in a more inconspicuous way.
  • Ambient/Decorative Lighting: This type of lighting can range from something as simple as a basic flush mount fixture (hallways, closets, bedrooms etc.) to the more elaborate focal point fixtures (foyer, dining room, island etc.).  These types of fixtures are generally where you can plan to spend a bit more of your budget.
    • A couple of examples of ambient/decorative light fixtures are chandeliers, wall sconces, picture lights,
example of decorative lighting & pot lights, with ample natural light

What is your ceiling height?  Is it flat or vaulted? What size is the room? Will you have much natural light from windows?

  • The answers to these questions will help you to determine the number of fixtures required, as well as the size of the fixtures that will work for each space.

What look and style are you hoping to achieve in your home?

  • We would suggest you try to visit as many of the show homes built by our amazing local home builders.  Seeing a lot of the options in person makes the visualization process a lot easier.  As well getting to see all of the newest trends and styles out is a fun experience.
  • There are so many popular décor styles out there, and there is a light fixture for every décor style on the market.
Beautiful hanging lights
Sorento Custom Home’s 2019 Hospital Lottery Home

Have you established a lighting budget for your project?

  • Most builders will assign a price per square foot for lighting. Be sure to communicate early on in your build if you have some specific requests (ceiling fans, statement fixtures, pot lights, etc). These lighting types can come with increased electrical costs, you want to ensure that your budget will allow these items.
  • When you determine what is important to you- (for example, a bold statement dining room fixture, or some funky pendants over the island), your lighting salesperson can help to keep you within budget.

The bottom line is, you are not in this alone! You can always come up with a rough lighting plan, and you can come to the experts for help. Please stop by our showroom for a visit.  We would be happy to assist with the layout of the lighting in your home and provide fixture options to bring your vision to reality.

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NOW WHAT: Hardwood Floor Scratches

by raveshowroom
on January 1, 2020
.

Oh no!!  Your brand new hardwood flooring just got its first scratch!  Heartbreak… but don’t worry!!  Just remember, this is your home – to be lived in and memories to be made!

Wood is a natural product, and you can expect to get scratches on your hardwood.   However, there are some things to keep in mind as you are choosing hardwood for your new home or reno.

The species of wood can vary greatly in the grain.  Look for a “grainy” wood such as Hickory or Oak; these two species are fairly hard woods.  They have a lot of grain, so its easier to hide scratches when they happen.  When you choose a smooth, clean lined wood such as maple, it’s more difficult to hide or repair the scratches. 

Kids will be kids!

If you have kids or pets, we definitely recommend a Hickory or an Oak for your new flooring.  If you choose a soft wood such as Maple, Birch, or Pine, just know that you will get scratches and dents more easily.  I had a Birch Rustic Grade installed into a previous acreage home, and I loved it!  A houseful of kids and lots of activity…so it did scratch–but I still loved it.  I loved the color it darkened down to—a mellow golden shade.

Haven’t you ever walked into a years old restaurant or pub setting with the floors so worn—you just feel immediately comfortable and at home.  It stands the test of time—and you can easily put modern, industrial, or transitional styles and it blends perfectly!

How do we help to prevent scratches from happening?  Generally, hardwood really is an easy product to keep.  The most important thing is to vacuum regularly.  This is super important, as it’s the small crumbs, tiny sharp particles, etc. that can be the most damaging to those floors.  This is especially important around the Dining Table, as the chairs are sliding in and out across the wood, and catch those small pieces. 

Hardwood with genuine time-worn charm

Some tips for general care and maintenance are 1) be sure to keep your Relative Humidity between 30 – 55%, as recommended by National Industry Standards.  This helps to protect your floor against cracking, checking of surface, contraction and expansion.  2)  Don’t let water or other spills sit on your hardwood.  Though the wood will shrink back down from a spill sitting for a little while, do try to get it cleaned up as soon as it happens. 3)  Do not use harsh detergents, bleach, acidic or ammonia-based cleansers, or oil soaps.  These can strip or dull the finish, and leave a white, dull haze on the surface.  4)  Use caution using refreshing finishes or coatings.  These can result in a build-up and more maintenance down the line for you.  And who wants more housework!??

Should you get a scratch, there’s a couple of things you can do.  CAT1 carries a product called “TIBET ALMOND STICK”.  It has a conditioning, somewhat waxy texture that you can rub on to minor scratches, let sit to absorb, and then buff away with soft cloth.  It deepens the exposed wood and blends the color and scratch away.

You can also use the stain pen (color matched—maybe 2 or 3 colors) to blend the scratch.  Start gradually with light pressure and blot/smear with a tissue to soften the edges.  Add more color as necessary to create your own “wood grain”.

If your floor is badly scratched from pets, and general hard wear and tear, you may consider having the wood sanded and refinished by a professional.  This can be a messy job.  Book a consultation with an experienced hardwood refinisher.  Ask for references and go look at their work if possible.  It is not inexpensive to do.  You could expect approx. $6-$8/SF, depending on prep and shape of the existing flooring.

Overall, you must look at your hardwood as an investment to last.  Once you commit to hardwood for  the natural, beautiful product that it is, with a little care and attention, it’s a surface that should last for many years.

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Holiday Entertaining: 101

by raveshowroom
on December 1, 2019
.

Are you ready to entertain for the holidays?

Yes, Christmas is coming and there’s just no way around it! Christmas comes once a year whether you are a fan of the holiday, or not.

Try not to think of Christmas as a day but as a season to celebrate.

To start off the season it’s time to think about rearranging the furniture making room for the Christmas tree and getting ready to entertain.

Remember your guests when moving furniture around.  Arrange your furniture to encourage conversation. Make sure that there are adequate side tables for your guests to set down their drinks and appetizers.

Traffic flow is important when deciding furniture placement. Is there room for your guest to move around and help themselves to refreshments?

Something people may forget about is how lighting can set the mood for your entertaining.  Mini LED strands look great intertwined with your decorations.   Make sure there is plenty of light for the tasks at hand and ambient light to help with the overall festive feel.

So you’ve decide to throw a party. Make sure you have a budget and stick to it. Set priorities and decide if this is a sit down dinner or casual buffet event. Keep it manageable. Having your food menu and guest list written out ahead of time, will keep you organized

What to serve guests is always the question most of us ask ourselves. Remove some of the stress by realizing you don’t need to be perfect. This year try and simplify things and don’t be afraid to ask for help.  Before hosting there are many things that can be done ahead of time. Have most of the food prepared the day before. Seasonal serving dishes can be brought out early and decorating can be done.

I like to stick to tried and true recipes, this can save you time as well. This is not the time to experiment, we want guest to enjoy the food, not look for the trash to hide the food that was an oops. If you have the space keep your food and drinks on different tables. It will help with traffic jams.  The use of ice buckets will free up more space in the fridge.

Prepare cocktails in a pitcher, great for self-serving, how about Cranberry and vodka or Moscow mules. Make sure there are ample non-alcoholic drinks available as well. Cider is always a favourite

Slices of citrus fruit, apples, cinnamon sticks, clove or pine cone will scent the air, arrange them is a bowl or basket.  Throw a few pine cones on the fire if you are lucky enough to have one.

When decorating your table try and stay consistent with the style of your home.

How about using your favourite Christmas Carol to inspire your table scape. Silver Bells, Winter Wonderland, White Christmas, Jingle bells etc.  

When creating your table scape start with the base. Things that will make a great foundation for your table décor: table runner, scarf, plaid blanket, faux fur sheepskin, small (new) rug.  Add some garland, decorate with candles, candle holders and flowers. For a twist to the tradition table center pieces try boxes, trays, toys, bead strands, fruit, branches, pine cones and traditional glass tree trimming balls. Try thinking outside the box.  With the new battery operated candles and lanterns, or LED strands you don’t have to worry about open flames if that is a concern.

When your guests arrive, the first thing they will see is the entrance to your home. Make sure it is welcoming and has the Christmas feel.  A wreath is a traditional touch for a door, it is a symbol of eternal strength.  Urns with greenery, exterior lights, a welcome mat, garland, bows or branches. Whatever you do to make the entrance inviting, will certainly set the mood for your guests.

If you have the room inside your home, have a place for guest to remove their outside foot wear and coats.  A bench or chair for the less nimble is a very nice touch. Do you have room for a decorated console table in the entry?  A mirror is also great for guests to check their hair and adjust themselves before entering the festivities.

Whether you have decided to add games to the event or just some music playing in the background, be sure to enjoy the evening yourself. And remember, it is the people you have chosen to spend time with that is the most important part of the season.

Merry Christmas!

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Trending: Top 5 Hot Wallpaper Looks!

by raveshowroom
on November 1, 2019
.

Make a bold statement! Wallpaper is back, and BOLD styles are all the rave! Our Rave Design Showroom has a current library of Joanne Wallpaper books for you to go through and get inspired.  Here are the current top five hot trends in wallpaper.

 

#1- Our Favorite Bold Floral Wallpaper:

Florals have made it back onto our walls and they are bigger and bolder than ever before… but in a more sophisticated way than we’ve seen in the past.  These florals add visual interest and a focal point that will have all the wow factor that people are wanting in their homes. We have seen these bold floral wall papers used in baby nurseries, offices, bathrooms, laundry rooms… really, these look spectacular in ANY room!

 

#2- Our Favorite Geometric Wallpaper:

The gals here at Rave love an amazing geometric.  These wall papers add so much visual interest into a space without taking over the whole room.  A bolder geometric wallpaper will add dimension and style to any room in your home.  We would recommend using these wallpapers in an entryway, bedroom, dining room, behind a bookshelf and don’t forget your fifth wall… the ceiling!

 

#3- Our Favorite Metallic Wallpaper:

Wanting that pop of glam in your space… by choosing one of our favorite bold metallic wallpapers, the possibilities are endless. Applying these metallic wallpapers onto your wall will definitely step them up a notch, giving you good bang for your buck!  Metallic wallpaper in silver will compliment those modern and contemporary styles, while gold hues look amazing with vintage, art deco and Hollywood regency styles.

 

#4- Our Favorite Fun Textured Wallpaper:

Don’t want to commit to a permanent brick, stone or reclaimed wood wall? Our favorite textured walls will offer you an affordable alternative without added construction costs. Our realistic textured wallpaper will add that perfect application for that modern farmhouse or industrial style you are looking for. Other textures such as grass cloth will create a more contemporary look for your home.

 

#5- Our Favorite 3-Dimensional Wall Panels:

Oh my goodness, have you seen our display of the line of ‘Wall Flats’ in the Rave Design Showroom?  These modern wall panels create a sculptural and continuous dimensional surface for any room setting through 3-d patterning. Perfect for bedrooms, living rooms, dining rooms and home offices.

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