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Mega Stress Reducers: Shower Panels Make Relaxing Easy
Posted on Monday, February 28, 2011
Let’s all take a deep breath in. Now exhale. Ahh, relaxation. Yep, that’s the goal for 2011, according to a recent spa trend report that cites relaxation as the primary reason why people love to go to spas. We couldn’t agree more. And that’s why having your own spa retreat/sanctuary at home in your bathroom is a huge factor contributing to the wellness revolution for Baby Boomers, among others. Think of your home spa as your antidote to life’s untold stresses. As the warmth of cascading water sprays at various angles from your shower panel — it washes away tensions and rejuvenates you. As you lather up, consider the following mantra “no worry, no hurry.” Bet you feel better now, right? Well, no wonder — you’ve entered the home walk-in shower escape, a.k.a. spa zone.

The Spa Shower
Here’s some more good news for designophiles. Brushed bronze stainless steel is one of the top finishes cited by the National Kitchen and Bath Association’s 2011 design survey, which notes that bronze is a mega popular faucet finish in both the kitchen and bathroom. Enter Dé’s Fresca Pavia stainless steel (brushed bronze) thermostatic shower panel with an ultra modern vibe. Note: this shower panel is also available in brushed grey and brushed silver. We love this shower panel’s good looks, but its function is what really counts here — providing you with a massage capability on par with any spa we’ve come across. How swell is that? Basic showerhead? Hardly. Instead there are four (count ‘em!) water outputs, including a showerhead for the ever-so-trendy rainfall effect, a handheld showerhead for accessing those hard to reach places from head to toe, four swiveling massage water jets and a convenient tub filling water spout on the bottom. With vertical spa concepts bigger (and better) than ever, we think this is just what you’ve been looking for. And, thanks to the opening of our new Staten Island showroom, all Fresca brand products receive an additional 10 percent off until March 1st! Why not buy two?
Double the Fun - Designing a Bathroom for Two
Posted on Thursday, February 24, 2011
There’s something about carefully designing that dream bathroom that just get’s you all charged up. Especially since all your ideas have been living in your head for a long time. To start, it’s got the appealing color palette you’ve always wanted and inventive fixtures, but more importantly, there’s a jetted tub to die for (enough dedicated space for the two of you) and a focal point must — a vanity with two sinks that’s complete with the best lighting and mirrors. Now it’s time to buy towels! Once you’ve decided to renovate your old bath or move into a new home and begin with a blank canvas, there are a few things worth considering. Let’s begin with the topic of size. Despite the era of mega estate McMansion-style homes, not everyone has a ginormous bathroom space. But the trend toward using furniture in the bath, such as an antique vanity, has lots of homeowners craving more space. If your bathroom retreat isn’t the size of a hotel spa, don’t fret. It takes creativity and just the right products to help you to carve out an aesthetically pleasing functional space, no matter the size. Let’s get started.

Think Times Two
Let’s look at some suggestions from the design team:
  1. Double up with stylish bathroom accessories to stay organized for two. Eliminate towels on the floor and mess with double (his/her) towel bars and double robe/pajama hooks.
  2. Avoid clutter and claustrophobia. The easiest way to give yourself some breathing space (especially for two) is to avoid loading up the countertop with all kinds of stuff — everything from toiletries to hair gadgets. Rather, clear the counter by utilizing a glass shelf (or two — his and her style) for daily necessities. This is also helpful for extra storage if you end up using two pedestal sinks (with limited to no counter space) rather than a double vanity.
  3. Shower Power. If you’ve got room for two showerheads, that’s one thing. But if you’re space permits just one — ensure the showerhead is pleasing for both of you. That means modern multiple spray settings are exactly what you want (and need) — from serious muscle massage to a soothing end of day rainshower effect.
  4. Expansion Plus. The trend toward having access to your walk-in closet from the bathroom is a norm nowadays for newer homes and a must for expansion renovation projects. This is a perfect adaptive space annex idea for couples that have square footage that isn’t being utilized to its max.
There are plenty more ideas to come. But for now, be sure to check out for storage accessories to keep your counter clutter to a minimum, fab dual vanities, modern pedestal sinks, designer mirrors and other bathroom musts we know you’ll love.
Have you thought about how your bathroom mirror coordinates with your room design? Are you inclined for a wooden frame traditional with shelves, a contemporary unframed oval with a built in magnifying mirror or are you the eclectic sort who’ll hang two different mirrors over a his and her vanity? Whatever your design direction, there are a slew of considerations when choosing a bathroom mirror. The design team at has a few ideas that echo some HGTV strategies (yes, we’re devotees too). Feel free to use the following advice when making your mirror choices:

1. Your bathroom vanity should always be larger than the mirror. Never hang a mirror over a vanity if the size of the mirror takes away from the vanity as a focal point of the room.
2. However, since couples (and siblings sharing a bathroom) are usually fans of double sink bathroom vanities — here’s where you can go big! Even consider wall-to-wall for extra drama. Or if you prefer, design the space so that one mirror is situated above each sink.
3. Since lighting is key for life’s daily bathroom tasks, side lights on the mirror(s) are smart, but we also like the trend of hanging a sconce directly on the mirror (this nifty little designer trick will add twice as much light to the room).
4. If your bathroom is on the small side, mirrors will definitely add depth. The results in one heck of an optical illusion.
5. Speaking of space — there are physical space savers you can add into the bathroom, like mirrored medicine cabinets. Don’t shy from the idea — there are ultra modern and recessed designs that will make a statement while keeping your toiletries out of sight. Consider our Fresca medicine cabinet with a built-in light (good news — the Fresca brand is 10 percent off in celebration of our new Staten Island, NY showroom). It’s definitely a top seller in our portfolio for its clean lines and for being a multifunction storage element too.

So what are you waiting for? Go for a unique shape and create a visual point of interest. The decorative vanity mirror you choose just might set the tone for the space as a whole. How cool is that?
Accessorize! Big Return, Low Investment
Posted on Monday, February 21, 2011
Not ready for a full remodel or a new bathroom design from scratch? Then here’s your thought for the day: Accessorize! There’s something to be said for cool modern and cutting-edge designs now available for some of the most basic utilitarian items — from double towel bars and shelf/rack combos to toilet paper holders and even soap dishes, toothbrush holders and corner shelves. Chuckle if you will, but these mundane bathroom accessories do fit into the context of the larger design aesthetic — with choices including beautiful brass and quadruple chrome finishes to alterations on base designs that elevate otherwise ordinary elements to wowzer status. For instance, Dé’s Fresca Generoso line is an example of modern design coupled with trend-worthiness!

Multifunction Décor
Think out of the box when you consider minimally styled geometric shapes (including square lines plus ovals, triangles and rectangles, among other shapes). Such hardware and bath accessories let you update a space with fashionable pieces that can be coordinated or eclectic — it just depends on your vision. For a coordinated minimalist expression, we like the Fresca Ottimo 26-inch towel bar for its solid unfussy styling, complemented by the bold Fresca Ottimo hook and Fresca Ottimo wall mounted soap dish. And the Fresca cover-less toilet paper holder looks like it just came straight from a modern hotel — furthering the Fresca line’s “hotel to home” appeal. This line has good looks and good value — all Fresca products are 10 percent off in conjunction with the grand opening of’s brand new 10,000-square foot showroom in Staten Island, NY.

Today’s wall mounted towel racks have far-reaching usage. We’re happy to say that the ultimate bathroom staple is now so stylish that it’s crossing over into the kitchen and being used to hold towels there too! We like it! We also like towel racks with multiple bars for mega function. It’s what we call “picture perfect Euro-style simplicity.”
If life imitates art, then we think that bathroom design certainly has a right to imitate fashion. Nowhere is that more apparent than when the design world meshes with New York Fashion Week. A load of esteemed fashion notables had their models strutting new lines on the catwalk with a loud and clear theme: minimalist, modern, long and lean with pared-down streamlined silhouettes. The color palette is pure too with ultra modern silvery shearlings, minimal whites and color-blocked dresses making headlines.

Modern and Cool
Now think about how minimalist contours and a silvery palette work in the bath. It’s apropos don’t you think to see a bonding between fashion and interior design? Especially when you look at what’s hot in faucets right now. Just recently, the National Kitchen and Bath Association revealed its faucet trends for 2011 stating that popular bathroom faucet finishes are bronze and oil-rubbed bronze, polished chrome, and polished nickel. It’s the modern minimalist color palette to a “t.”

Now at, our noteworthy Fresca line (currently on sale at 10 percent off in honor of our new Staten Island 10,000 square foot showroom) is highly representative of New York Fashion Week’s aesthetic. The Trebia centerset faucet in brushed nickel is minimalism at its best, as is the Liris single handle chrome faucet. The lines would make any apparel designer go gaga. As far as we see it: Chrome is classic! It manages to transcend designs from traditional to modern and transitional. And as for brushed nickel, well it’s also versatile and sleek to the max.

Naturally, we believe these faucet collections echo the contours and styling of apparel that we’ll see in stores and online at top retailers around the globe. Geometric lines that are so prevalent in contemporary European design parlay perfectly with the larger fashion equation. As 21st Century design embraces graceful, yet strong architectural lines, it too is the story of bath faucets for modern living.
Enhanced Décor - Must Mosaic Tile
Posted on Thursday, February 17, 2011
What might your new bathroom or remodel need to highlight its color palette? Mosaic tile, of course! Long-lasting, mosaic wall tile is a traditional mainstay for surrounds, backsplashes, countertops and shower walls as they are made to stand the test of time. But now tile is garnering newfound attention thanks to bold amped-up colors, graphic elements such as cutouts and tactile textures (check out tumbled series, for instance). Aesthetically perfect for designs that are sleek, modern and very fashion-forward, according to Coverings, the international trade show for the tile and stone industry, it’s all about the popularity of saturated colors. Look for tile in countless shades with rich accent colors, especially those with a focus on periwinkles and reds.
Favorite mosaic tile in our product portfolio include those with a matte finish, polished glass finish and metal textures. As for those all the rage hues touted by Coverings, we’ve also got ‘em! So if you’re looking for saturated shades paired with lush earthy neutrals — like a rich amber glow paired with red mix mosaic — look no further. Experts in the field say the translucence stops the colors from being too intense. We agree! Maybe that’s one of the reasons we like cool-water-inspired hues too — like blue glass Listello. Besides these “must” colors and designs, we offer most tiles in the standard 12" by 12" size to make it easy for you to measure out exactly how many you'll need to order. We plan ahead for you.

As a decorative element, tile not only has vibrant color but you can also find them with dimensional textures and patterns — like the flower series in black, red, green and other fab colors. It’s further evidence of the fact that traditional floral motifs are in high demand. In some ways, tile now imitate fabrics and quite realistically too — everything from silk to snake skin — automatically appealing to one’s sense of touch.
Trendy shapes now include simple circles and an array of spheres furthering tile’s artistic appeal. And we’ve got these covered too — with the “pebbles” series in’s line-up, available in hues of beige and red mixes.
Jetted Tub Trends: For the Wellness and Relaxation Seeker
Posted on Wednesday, February 16, 2011
Are the days of jetted tubs passé? Not if we have anything to say about it! Today, the tub is all about comfort, functionality and design. Lots of designers aren’t waving a flag for chromatherapy, aromatherapy or other add-ons that once garnered tons of press. In keeping with that perspective, most homeowners say they are less interested in bells and whistles and want a tub that’s less maintenance-intensive — such as ones with built-in ozone disinfecting cleaning systems like the standalone Ariel Platinum Whirlpool Tub — and have more therapeutic elements including soothing heat and powerful jets. Simplicity rather than all out super techie seems to be the directive.

Make it Work
As more architects allocate space for tubs in master bath suites, certain shapes fit the bill — so it’s imperative to have the specs for the model you like and to share the info with your contractor, architect or designer. This way everyone knows what’s needed to make it work. If you’re the DIY type and take on the contractor role, you too will need the info. We’ve found that corner tubs work especially well in tight spaces. For those remodeling, you might be able to stay within the existing footprint and utilize innovative space planning to turn the tub into a focal point with a stunning surround. We like combining glass tiles and smaller mosaic tile to cocoon the tub. It’s modern and chic! And, if you’re thinking of a total bathroom makeover, nowadays you can find whirlpools that are even part of coordinated bath suites.

Although it’s been reported that (especially in recent years) people have indeed scaled back on high-investment luxuries, there’s still wiggle room for our favorite substitute: affordable luxuries! So once again’s ever-present phrase comes into play for those of you seeking to update your bathroom with a Whirlpool tub from a quality brand. There are a few considerations to work through, such as: Will it fit the space and fit through the door? Where’s the plumbing? How often will I really use it? Do I want to bathe solo or with a partner? Ask yourself these questions (among others) when determining the Whirlpool that is right for you.

And, if you happen to decide that a tub with an elegant waterfall inlet that pours out a cascade of water that’s constantly warmed by the heat pump has your name on it — just remember we’re your source.
Technology in the Shower - Hello Jetsons!
Posted on Tuesday, February 15, 2011
If you think you know the meaning of the word shower. Rethink it. Today’s steam showers (enclosed shower stalls with a steam shower included) are tricked-out to the max — fully loaded with ultra-cool bells and whistles with all sorts of temperature controls and water pressure systems, plus built-in-music/CD connections and so much more. Remodeled or newly designed spacious bathrooms have inspired bathroom retreats like never before. At, we’ve paid attention to wet zone trends by taking modern contemporary looks and pairing them with what we like to call “forward thinking” shower technology. How does an ozone sterilization system strike you? If that sounds too complicated, then let’s get to the basics: Think spray coverage and thermal dynamics, mood lighting and ceiling rain showers too. Our opulent steam shower units come equipped with features and functions that maximize your bathroom’s value. When we say affordable luxury, we mean it!

Vertical Spas
Here are the facts — a home steam shower can also be used as an everyday shower but it has extras galore. Gone is the simple showerhead with its cold/hot control knob. In its place are steam units with body sprays, hand-held showerheads and even shower towers! Since oftentimes taking a bath in a tub with whirlpool jets is a luxury of time, showers remain the No.1 daily choice for homeowners. So nowadays custom-showering isn’t about run-of-the-mill extras. Anything but! If you want a vacation at home, this is it — with aromatherapy, CD/iPod hookups, acupuncture massages and even seating. Have we enticed you yet? Well, there’s more. Multiple shower jets, body sprays and foot massages are the norm in steam showers from such respected top-selling brands as AmeriSteam, Ariel, Neptune, Reflection and Atlantica.

And while we’re the leading go-to online destination for everything you’ll need for your bathroom — visit one of our three showrooms — in Philadelphia, Staten Island (our newest NY location!), and Brooklyn to try one of our steam showers on for size. No kidding! We recommend actually standing in your future steam shower prior to purchase to make sure it’s the perfect fit.
What’s a focal point in the design world? You’ll know the answer by asking yourself the following question: What do you first notice when you enter a room? eHow describes it as this: “Creating a focal point in interior decorating is a great way to bring a room together and give it some perspective. A fireplace, a single red chair in an otherwise monotone room or simply a vase of contrasting flowers can be a focal point.” We like this clear-cut definition. Now let’s think of it in terms of its meaning in the bathroom.

A Lasting Impression
A focal point can be a gleaming petite chandelier because one stunning element might just be enough. However, we think one of the best ways to generate an attention grabbing focal point is to pair a scene-stealing vanity with a mirror, and if you like, you can even add vanity lighting to further enhance the mirror’s impact. It speaks of something cohesive. And, know this — there’s a strategy to placement of any focal point. Should you give it prominence in your room arrangement? Absolutely. What might seem like a no-brainer is a common thread you read about and hear designers emphasize repeatedly. Hey, we keep up with HGTV!

From our portfolio at, there are plenty of furnishings and fixtures that can act as focal points to create a certain mood, or theme. You could choose to wrap your room and your focal point in white on white or use French antiques. We’re also fond of a romantic treatment or even one that goes high-tech modern or employs classic elegance. With white on white, we like its universal appeal; French antique has flair and a chic sensibility that suits us aesthetically while the whole notion of romantic is deftly translated through bathroom furniture that screams of refined opulence. As for high-tech modern, who doesn’t love the idea of a TV integrated into a mirror. And when we speak of classic (our constant fave) it’s all about engaging — how about a columnar pedestal sink with a warm color palette?
You see, at we’ve got lots of focal points on purpose! This way you’ll find exactly what you’re looking for.
Timesaving and Stylish - Double Sink Vanities Rule
Posted on Saturday, February 12, 2011
When house hunters are given a chance for a double sink bathroom vanity in their master bath, two is the preference all the way. It’s the smartest alternative to his and her separate baths. And in today’s housing and design market, standalone vanities are increasing in popularity. It’s also true that double sinks are great for kids’ bathrooms! These convenient time savers let busy people multi-task together — brushing teeth, shaving, washing hands, etc. It’s not only double the fun but it’s also good for your relationships! Since a double sink vanity is a must utilitarian item for just about any home, the only restriction for those of you longing for one is that you do need a quantity of space to support dual sink furniture.

Double the Selection
At, we’re committed to saving couples and families who are short on time unnecessary grooming hassles by offering double sink vanities in a wide selection of styles and materials. We’re talking across a gamut of modern, traditional, antique and contemporary designs. And just think, by going double, that means double the countertop space, cabinets and storage drawers. So if you’re thinking of replacing an ordinary outdated sink or starting brand new with your dream come true bathroom design — let us be your source and guide.
Your new double sink bath vanity could be the showstopper you were hoping for — even the focal point of the space. Choose traditional or ultra-modern from a stunning product portfolio at We’re particularly proud of the caliber of our Fresca brand double sink vanities — from Fresca Almanor Antique and Laberge (timeless!) to Fresca Bellezza Modern style. And one of the best parts is the fact that the entire line is now 10 percent off in celebration of our new flagship showroom in Staten Island, NY. So if you were even tinkering with the idea of purchasing a new double sink vanity, the time is now! Take advantage of the grand opening discount on prices that already represent the best in affordable luxury for the home.
More Sinks! Adding Value to Your Home
Posted on Thursday, February 10, 2011
Well, we’ve already told you of our love for vessel (bowl) sinks, but we have another huge fave — pedestal basins! We’ve gathered a stunning portfolio for our customers with styles suited for the modern, contemporary and/or traditional aesthetic, including a selection of cool designs combining tempered glass, chrome and even waterfall style bathroom faucets (one of many to choose from). Since updating the bathroom is one of the top ways to add value to your home, maybe it’s time to start sink shopping? Trust us, the Fresca line from is a wowzer! It’s also on sale now at 10 percent off in honor of the opening our new flagship showroom in Staten Island, NY.

Mid-range affordable luxury is still the way to go in our book. Evidence the fact that Realtor Mag (published by the National Association of Realtors) reports that “a mid-range bathroom project has an average 71 percent cost recovery, but the average recovery on an upscale bathroom project is nearly 10 points lower, at 61.6 percent.” Sounds like “mid-range affordable luxury” is definitely the moniker for dollar-wise thinkers!

Since we like to stay on top of the latest in design, the most recent news we came upon was from the National Kitchen & Bath survey already discussed in a previous posting — where designers were asked about key product categories for 2011. And since the survey had lots of info to share, here’s some more lowdown on sinks. What do you know? It’s a favorite topic!

Speaking of adding value to your home, newly remodeled bathrooms have made under mount sinks the dominating choice, thanks to 97 percent of certified bathroom designers utilizing them at the close of 2010. Turns out, designer interest in under mount sinks is up from 95 percent a year earlier. We’re happy to report that our love of vessel sinks has not gone unnoticed either. These beauties have become the clear second choice among designers, as 51 percent of NKBA designers have specified them in the final quarter of 2010, up a whopping 39 percent from last year. Further evidence that affordable good taste prevails! In addition, integrated sink tops were also up from 34 percent to 38 percent, pedestal sinks were up from 21 percent to 29 percent and drop-in sinks were up from 23 percent to 27 percent.

From everything we can gather from these stats, bathroom designers are high on lavatory sinks! And adding value to your home by updating your bath is a fix worth making. So visualize your dream sink now! The bottom line is that there are great buys coupled with great styles in a category that’s poised for what else? Greatness!
So what’s the color du jour? If you’re thinking of painting your bathroom or powder room to inject something new into the space, we’ve got some exciting “hues news” for you.
We recently learned that more than 100 designers who are members of the National Kitchen & Bath Association (NKBA), and who designed bathrooms during the last three months of 2010, participated in a survey regarding what they see as design trends for 2011. While some results were surprising — like the color green increasing in hotness — we also think this kind of info is a perfect indicator that there will be some rather specific changes in bath styles and designs happening this year. Here’s a heads up.

Green Bathrooms and More
The National Kitchen & Bath Association reports that the color green, (not a reference to eco-friendly spaces) — was a palette used by only 14 percent of NKBA designers a year ago. But at the end of 2010, that figure had risen to 24 percent. — a 10 percent increase that’s deemed trend worthy. And this could be one of the reasons why: Our need for a peaceful home retreat. Cool colors like green (and blue) provide a sense of serenity and also pair beautifully with white and/or silver fixtures.

The NKBA survey continues with a discussion of whites and off-whites, beiges and browns, saying these shades continue to be the three most commonly used color tones in the bathroom palette. The design survey touts that while white and off-white palettes are up slightly from 57 percent to 60 percent — beiges, which wear well and are safe neutrals, are down sharply from 66 percent to 57 percent, while browns have dropped from 48 percent to 38 percent. But we have to opine on brown, especially varying shades of mocha and rich chocolate brown, which we love. We believe that this color that was once called dull has been transformed into something indicative of artisan chocolates and good taste! You’ll find that a rich brown palette has a strong presence with select bathroom vanities at and also in our three showrooms located in Brooklyn, Philadelphia and Staten Island (our newest hotspot!). Other common color tones cited by the NKBA include blues (especially those that are crisp and spa-like) at 22 percent, grays at 21 percent, and bronzes and terracotta at 17 percent.

Here’s how we see it: While we all love colorful bath rugs and bathroom accessories, why stop there? Paint the walls, or just the ceiling, but go ahead and paint! Even a painted frame for a mirror in just the right color can heighten the drama of your bathroom or help to turn it into a tranquil sanctuary. Color phobic? Never!
Fab Vessel Filler Faucets
Posted on Tuesday, February 8, 2011

In follow-up to our posting on vessel sinks, as promised, here’s the latest commentary on vessel (bowl) filler faucets — faucets that are specifically designed for vessel sinks. The choices are quite varied and offer a striking aesthetic that over time just seems to progressively keep getting better (from both a function and design stand point). At, we proudly offer one of the finest and most regarded names in the faucet biz, Danze. In the mix of offerings are Danze Single Handle Vessel Fillers with traditional and modern lines. Perhaps one of the reasons we favor this brand is because we’re in total agreement with the Danze philosophy which strives to: “feature inspired design, staying at the forefront of decorating trends and offering something unique for every taste."

Attention Grabbers
Vessel sinks do tend to draw a lot of attention and more often than not, they become the focal point of the bathroom/powder room. Isn’t that exactly what you wanted! Designers often advise homeowners that their countertop might end up playing a secondary role when they discuss how vessel sinks and single lever faucet combos have impacted 21st Century bathroom design. It can essentially be summed up in two words: Big time! Vessel faucets on their own merit have exceeded expectations — winning their own kudos in the good looks department. At we tend to have a fondness for vertical single levers with Euro-styling and simple or pure modern lines. Top sellers in the industry come in chrome, brushed nickel and oil rubbed bronze finishes. In the case of vessel bowls, they are often seated above the countertop (and/or atop a pedestal base) and therefore call for an above the counter installation. Note to homeowners: you will find vessel faucets in wall- and deck-mount configurations. However, wall mounts are the method of choice for many designers. One telling reasons being that deck-mounts for vessel sinks need to be really tall in order to clear the bowl. Vessel bowls actually have two valid requirements that simply make practical sense on faucet and bowl wear and tear. 1. Water flow must go down to the bottom of the sink, otherwise, it could cause unnecessary splashing. 2. You need to calculate the right amount of space between the sink and the faucet, so you have enough room for the basics — like brushing your teeth or washing your hands.
As for the vessel bowl of your dreams, always select tempered (shatter-proof) glass, like the ones available through
Savvy Sinks
Posted on Monday, February 7, 2011
What’s your sink of choice — integrated sink tops, drop-ins, vessel sinks or pedestals? Whatever your preference, you win a prize for all of the above — since each category is cited on the National Kitchen and Bath Association’s Top 10 Trend Watch list. At we stay on top of the design curve (check out our online offerings and what’s in our showrooms — including our newest 10,000 square foot showroom in Staten Island) for these top 10 trend winners, among others.

Contemporary, Fun and Cutting-Edge
One of our favorites by and far is the vessel sink. It’s likeable for a lot of reasons — starting with the notion of affordable luxury. At, vessel sinks start as low as $99! So for budget-minded shoppers who seek panache without a big-ticket price tag, you can still easily add a whole lot of style to your bathroom or powder room without breaking the bank. And you can save counter space too! Vessel sink basins take up a whole lot less area than sinks that are recessed, for instance. That’s another big plus as far as the design world sees it.

For do it yourself (DIY) types, vessels are faves because installation isn’t as difficult or as costly as other sinks (no cut-outs needed, for example). Plus, you can switch out vessel sinks much easier than a drop-in, if you get tired of its style or if you want to change out your palette at any point. You could go from a concentric squares glass vessel sink to copper ripple glass in no time!
Another critical plus point for a vessel sink is that you can incorporate it with any number of counters — from an antique table base or even something with a modern more minimalist contour. With just the right vessel sink, a simple and austere design can have an added pinch of warmth. It’s amazing how many vessel sinks are now on the market for almost any aesthetic, thanks to colorful bowls in rainbow hues as well as textured and rippled glass. Some popular materials in addition to glass includes cast iron, marble, decorative vitreous china and even natural stone.
Diversification for the bath is actually why we find design to be so fun and exciting. It’s the reason we are who we are! The face of design is always changing and new designs and technologies are becoming even more affordable and accessible.

Coming up… setting the mood with plumbing fixtures to compliment your vessel sink!
Behold the Faucet - How we adorn the Bath
Posted on Friday, February 4, 2011
Matte, shiny or a smooth satin sheen? What’s your pleasure? One of the reasons has such an amazing and seemingly endless assortment of faucets (lav and basin sets, shower columns and even bidets, for example) is because we like them! Mundane no more, replacing dated fixtures is the perfect pick-me-up for a bathroom renovation or to add something bold to a brand new design. Swap out the faucet in a tired space and you’ll see just how refreshed your bath (and you) feel.

Fave Finishes
We think that faucets and decorative hardware products should still be hailed as the jewelry for the bath. Now don’t groan, it’s not a cliché to say that. We think of faucets as the perfect way to personalize this all-important home space. They have been rightfully elevated in the pecking order of bathroom design to super star status. No matter how you shake it, these are big kid adornments, bling-bling and the icing on the cake. Okay, now you can groan.

Once the norm in the ‘30s, chrome remains a top-seller in faucets today for a couple of telling reasons. It has a clean modern look to it and its durability factor is solid, coupled with the fact that tarnish is a no-no. Technology has indeed worked wonders with creating abrasion-resistant materials. And just in terms of sheer volume, HGTV reports that chrome has it hands down in popularity among the masses. There are lots of designs and finishes to choose from in today’s competitive marketplace — everything from silver-tone and brushed finishes (our fave is brushed nickel) to bronzes, mixed-metals and even gold. But know this: Finish will determine price.

It’s likely you’ll go online to a website (like ours!) or visit a design showroom (like ours!) and find a variety of options with purposeful design — from smooth, gently rounded silhouettes to streamlined flattened and sleek contours. While some years back, manufacturers added in crystals and rare metals for a heightened faucet glam factor — we remain on the side of design that hands down manages to outshines and visually outperform with a broad sophisticated style. How will you ever decide? We think it’s intuitive. You’ll know it when you see it!
Design + Style: Mixing it up with Antique Vanities
Posted on Thursday, February 3, 2011
The interest in modern, functional design for the bath isn’t cut and dry. Meaning, it’s not limited to only simple clean lines, a neutral palette and chrome. For some homeowners and design enthusiasts it’s a modern interior 100 percent or nothing. But for others, it can also be about softening a minimalist mid-century modern setting by incorporating antiques within it. Especially so in the bath. Naysayers might gravitate to the notion of something ending up with a shabby chic sentiment only, nixing it from the start. But it isn’t about that once ubiquitous design premise. Rather, a move toward serious furniture pieces in the bathroom has been in the making for the last ten years. Now it’s full on.

No more Matchy-Matchy
As our aesthetics and design inclinations have shifted, what’s apparent today is that a no more matchy-matchy theory of bathroom design has caught our attention. And we’re loving it! This is intriguing from a bath point of view, especially in terms of the ever-growing choices in furniture-style cabinetry, including vanities and accent pieces. Creating a living room-esque feel in the bath has essentially moved ho-hum utilitarian pieces out and replaced them with far more elegant options. While we still love built-ins, true pieces of furniture such as graceful antique vanities make a style statement that built-ins simply cannot. Such anchor pieces can be just the catalyst for the larger foundation of the room. Antique vanities also add a heightened sense of personalization to the space.

We’ve found we’re not alone with liking the pairing of an antique vanity in a mix of mid-century modern in order to soften and add warmth to the aesthetic. But the key to making an ensemble like this work is to ensure that the space looks well thought out rather than a chaotic mish-mash. A recent National Kitchen and Bath Association (NKBA) Design Trends Survey says the continuation of popular styles in the marketplace, include “in with the old, out with the new.” This showcases the fact that “Traditional” will continue as one of the most popular design styles in bathrooms. It’s further evidence that our point of view on antique vanities is shared by the powers that be at the National Kitchen and Bath Association. That’s a good thing. However, we still want to keep “the new” — we just want to mix it up!

One final note: We’re so hot on the idea of antique vanities — that in addition to our existing wide-range portfolio of “real” furniture pieces in an array of styles — is adding even more of a selection to our antique vanity line. We think you’ll like what you see! Stay tuned for more.
Color Trends - Neutrals are on our List for 2011
Posted on Wednesday, February 2, 2011
Pops of Color

What’s the hot color we’ll be wearing and decorating with this year? While the Pantone Color Institute has named Honeysuckle the “it” color for 2011 — we think it’s best to conjure it up for paint, towels, plus an occasional decorative accessory (and even perhaps for poetic wedding apparel). But, according to Pantone’s powers that be, this dynamic reddish pink, which is said to be encouraging and uplifting — could be just the “pop” we’re all looking for to “elevate our psyche beyond escape.”  Hmmm. You just gotta love the positive vibe, but time will ultimately tell if the shade saturates the market or not. Could honeysuckle be the next great bold accent in black-and-white designs? Or the modern tint for hip appliances?

The Winning Color Palette
Our bottom line for 2011’s color palette is the following proclamation: Choose what you like! And although we’re forever evolving our tastes, we’re still HUGE fans of black and white. Boring? Hardly. Cliché? Never. Here’s why. According to trend forecasters: As companions for brighter shades or as straightforward monochromatic standalone hues — neutrals remain hot. Neutrals can be perceived as playful, dramatic, tailored and elegant.  And as a companion shade to black and white — gray (including hematite, soft gray and charcoal) has gained a strong foothold in the design arena surpassing the lure of chocolate brown for paint, appliances, tiles (i.e., slate, stone and river rock) and more. It’s also the color repeatedly touted for turning a bathroom into a contemporary living space — not unlike the spa concept that’s been imitated for ages. You’ll definitely hear us referencing the bathroom as “a contemporary living space” — it’s a perfect way to upgrade the dialogue (and nuance) this utilitarian part of the home.
The portfolio of products is tuned into product trends to ensure that we’re tuned into you and your design aspirations. Whether design is traditional or modern, contemporary or unfussy — the neutral palette is sophisticated and classy for all. Now, just picture how dynamic your black and white palette will look when paired with chrome faucet fittings. Wow! Look for white — which never goes out of style — to take center stage in everything from tubs and vanities to sinks and commodes and for black to take over in the world of vanities. See for yourself in our online catalog at or in our showrooms, including our newest location in Staten Island.