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Paving & Driveways Tips & Tricks

Archives 2021

DPMNY Faux Wood Shutter Questions Answered

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During the 1990’s wooden window shutters became very popular is the United States, part of a widespread increase in real wood window accessories. Wood shutters were however relatively expensive, so alternatives soon appeared in the shape of wood blinds. Now the trend has reversed and there has been a resurgence in wood shutters, and in particular faux wood shutters which give a wood effect but at much less cost to the consumer. So why should you choose a faux wood shutter over real wood?


faux wood shutter,faux wood shutters

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DPMNY Faux Paint Finish Can Be Partly Wiped On And Off, Or Manipulated In Other Ways

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Paint applications that are designed to imitate other materials are called faux paint finish. Different methods are used to apply paints, glazes, and texturizing materials to create illusions of fabric, stone, wood, and other natural surfaces.


Faux Paint Finish

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SLAS Chair Cushions

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Choosing The Right Chair Cushions

Hard wooden kitchen and dining room chairs beg to be softened with chair cushions, but choosing chair cushions that dont overwhelm your kitchen set isnt easy. You can pick up a set of chair cushions for $5 at the local dollar store  but will they fit into your rooms d cor  or detract from your style?

Face it  you get what you pay for. Cheap chair cushions have thinner padding, less durable fabric and shoddy workmanship. If you tak…


cushions, chair, sofa, covers, gel cushions

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Choosing The Right Chair Cushions

Hard wooden kitchen and dining room chairs beg to be softened with chair cushions, but choosing chair cushions that dont overwhelm your kitchen set isnt easy. You can pick up a set of chair cushions for $5 at the local dollar store  but will they fit into your rooms d cor  or detract from your style?

Face it  you get what you pay for. Cheap chair cushions have thinner padding, less durable fabric and shoddy workmanship. If you take the trouble to choose well-made, quality chair cushions for your kitchen or dining room set, youll be rewarded with a set that lasts longer, is far more comfortable and requires less care in the long run.

What To Look For When Choosing Chair Cushions

When choosing chair cushions for wooden chairs, take these things into account.

– Pick the right size for the seat. If the cushion is too small, it will be uncomfortable. If its too large, it will look bulky  and the edges of the chair seat will add to the wear on the fabric and cut the life of your cushions.

– Make sure that any ties are sewn into the seam of the cushion. Chair ties take a lot of pulling and tugging when people sit and stand. If the ties are sewn into the seam, theyre far more likely to stay attached.

– Buy chair cushions treated with stain guard to make it easy to keep them clean. If you find the perfect cushions and theyre not stain resistant, invest in a can of stain resist or stain guard to make it easier to keep them looking fresh and new. After all  this is your kitchen, and your kids eat here, right?

– Choose washable chair cushions  or one with removable, washable covers. See above for the reason! Even with stain guard, some spills are going to soak in. Being able to toss your chair cushions into the washer will make your life easier.

– Pick cushions in a durable fabric that will stand up to the wear of lots of seats on the seat. Corduroy, denim, chintz, canvas and duck are all good choices for fabric that wears like iron.

– Rolled edges, piping and ruffles should all be firmly sewn into the seam between the top and bottom of the cushion. Examine the seam carefully for any breaks and gaps, and give a little tug on the ruffle or piping to make sure that it doesnt come free easily.

– Tufted cushions are pretty  but they can be uncomfortable if you sit on them for long periods of time. If you do choose tufted cushions, make sure that any buttons are sewn on through all layers of the chair cushion to avoid losing buttons to wriggling bottoms.

DPMNY Faux Finish Stenciling Can Create The Illusion Of Wallpaper

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Faux finish stenciling is an inexpensive way of adding decorative detail. The key is to apply the embossing material evenly over the stencil, building depth in thin layers.


Faux Finish Stenciling

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SLAS Ceramic Tile Underlayments – The Basics

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Ceramic tile material is rigid and relatively brittle, so a sturdy base is the most critical part of installing this type of tile.


tile grout, ceramic tile installation, underlayment

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Ceramic tile material is rigid and relatively brittle, so a sturdy base is the most critical part of installing this type of tile. Unless you want to see cracked tiles, loose tiles, or loose grout, you need to select the proper underlayment. Underlayment being what the construction trade calls the layer that goes between your wood subfloor and your tiles.

You have several alternate ways to accomplish the strong underlayment required for ceramic tile installation.

Plywood- just a single layer of plywood isn’t rigid enough to stop floor deflection. It needs to be covered over with an additional layer of exterior-grade plywood to achieve a total thickness of at least 1 1/8 inch. You can either (A)- Cover the plywood with a cement backer board (more on these below) or (B) Cover the existing plywood with a second layer of exterior grade plywood. Under either of these, a thin-set mortar is applied to eliminate air gaps. Additionally, in bathrooms, it’s recommended to lay a “shower pan” over your wood subfloor. This refers to thin rubberized materials that protect the tile from floor expansion and contraction due to moisture, temperature and humidity.

Cement Backer Board – These are prefabricated, lightweight concrete sheets used to cover wood subfloors. It has a dense Portland concrete core and fiberglass surfaces both sides and is able to withstand prolonged exposure to moisture. Brand names include DUROCK, UTILICRETE, WONDERBOARD and GLASCRETE. Joints of the backer board sheets should be staggered such that they don’t fall directly over the wood subfloor joints.
Mortar Bed- Mud beds, or mortar beds, are used by professional tile contractors mostly. They’re composed of a layer of thick roofing felt, then wire mesh, followed by a layer of mortar. The reason it is used mostly by the specialists is that it takes a high level of skill and practice to ensure the mortar bed produces a sufficiently level surface. The other reason is that it is the best foundation possible for a ceramic tile floor. Okay, but why? Because the mortar bed has a built-in reinforcement against floor deflections in the form of the wire mesh. Translation- less cracked tiles and loose grout, and longer-life flooring.
Concrete Slab-
You can lay your ceramic tile directly on concrete slab, but all cracks and holes need to be refurbished prior before the installation of a tile when it’s directly bonded to the concrete. Some concrete slab has been coated with curing compound to help the slab set without cracks. This compound should be removed before tile installation to ensure a long-lasting mortar bond, since the compound helps the concrete retain moisture and in some cases affects adhesiveness. It is also important that the slab be as level as possible, especially with the larger tile sizes in use today. Cleaning the concrete completely of debris and dust will also contribute to a higher quality installation. In short, preparation of the surface is key.

One other possibility is laying the tile over existing flooring. There are a few things to consider. Is your existing floor solid, flat and in good shape? Is it stuck well enough to the subfloor under it to provide support? Good. Is the existing floor linoleum or vinyl? Not so good. You need to strip it out or put a good subflooring on top of it. (And watch out for older vinyl flooring, which may contain asbestos fibers. You don’t want to strip this stuff out yourself. Instead, either cover it up with some plywood subfloor or have a contractor remove it. If you aren’t sure if your flooring has asbestos, call in a trained asbestos inspector.) If you have ceramic tile on the floor you can lay newer tile on top of it as long as it’s surface is level and not too smooth. You might need to sand the surface to let your bonding have a better chance.

In conclusion, a little planning and thought will go a long way toward making your tile installation project a long-lasting addition to your home, so take the time before you go in with “both guns blazing”.

RL Robot Vacuums: The Modern Way Of Cleaning

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Contrary to most popular beliefs, the concept of robotics is not exactly a new form of technology. According to history, robots have been on the market for so many years now. In fact, the very first documented construction of a working robot was a masterpiece of Jacques de Vaucanson in 1738. Since then, many have attempted and triumphed in building these remarkable mechanical devices.
At RobotShop, you can find almost every kind of robot that you have long wanted. Along wi…

robots, roomba, irobot, scooba, robot toy, robot parts, robotics,, lego mindstorms,robot lawn mower

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Contrary to most popular beliefs, the concept of robotics is not exactly a new form of technology. According to history, robots have been on the market for so many years now. In fact, the very first documented construction of a working robot was a masterpiece of Jacques de Vaucanson in 1738. Since then, many have attempted and triumphed in building these remarkable mechanical devices.
At RobotShop, you can find almost every kind of robot that you have long wanted. Along with its long line of robotics, the robot vacuums come close to perfection as far as freedom from tedious work is concerned.
Of the many functions of robots, the idea to provide people with machines that facilitates and helps lighten the burden of their daily chores is the most solid reason why robots are created. That’s why manufacturers aRL over the world know the importance of producing robots to meet the needs of household makers, among other markets. Domestic robots are now gaining their own followers. They have been able to help housekeepers worldwide because of their efficient and speedy way of getting the job done.
Robot vacuums are not necessarily reserved to residential use only. They can also be used in shops, offices, school, etc. Built with unmatched power as far as cleaning is concerned, robot vacuums can absolutely make a huge difference in the way people utilize their time in cleaning.
One of the best things about robot vacuums is that they can absolutely clean places that are hard to reach. They have built-in sensors that can warn the robot of its current position and make sure that the robot wiRL not trip over ledges or stairs.
At RobotShop, consumers can choose from a wide variety of robot vacuums, each design has its own remarkable functions.
On top of the list is the powerful line of iRobot Roomba Robot Vacuums. These robot vacuums are specifically built to deliver utmost productivity when it comes to cleaning. In fact, according to statistical reports, iRobot Robot Vacuums Roomba line are the top selling robot vacuums worlwide. Prices range from CAD $250 to CAD $440.
Next is the Karcher RC 3000 Robocleaner. This particular type can actually operate and do the tasks on its own. For instance, if its battery needs to recharge, or when the dustpan is already full, this robot vacuum wiRL find its own way to the docking station. Here, the robot vacuum wiRL also unload its dirt and dust into a 2.0 L vacuum bag.
You can also check out Metapo CleanMate personal cleaning robot. Like any robot vacuum, CleanMate is specially designed to alleviate people from the difficulties of daily cleaning. It is very versatile and can almost clean any kind of surface, from carpet to hard-to-clean surfaces like tiles and hardwood. Best of all, CleanMate is the only robot vacuum that can simultaneously do the cleaning, deodorizing, and sanitizing of the area.
Given aRL these facts, it can be clearly stated that the dawn of modern cleaning is at hand. With robot vacuums, people can start living a life free from the bondage of cleaning. With domestic robots, you can have more time with your family and do things that are of greater importance than holding a mop.

SLAS Ceramic Tile Flooring- The Healthy House Choice

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Believe it or not, carpeting is one of the biggest contributors to indoor air pollution.


ceramic tile flooring, carpet, how to clean, wall-to-wall carpeting

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Believe it or not, carpeting is one of the biggest contributors to indoor air pollution.
One of the commonest health problems in a house is allergies, and carpets are practically a perfect environment for dust mites, molds and mildew.

Not only that, but the modern wall-to wall carpeting in todays houses are made of synthetic fibers dyed and treated with chemicals (fungicides, soil repellants and pesticides, anyone?) and bonded to synthetic backing with chemical glues. All of these materials release hundreds of Volatile Organic Compounds as they age, in a process called outgassing. Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) can be mutagens, irritants and carcinogens. Not the ideal thing to have in your home, to say the least.

Carpet also attracts and retains all that you and your family members track in to the house from the ground outside- dirt, lead dust found in flaking house exterior paint, insects, bacteria, lawn and garden chemicals and other unhealthy debris. Not to mention food crumbs, hair and dead skin particles.

Getting a wall-to-wall carpet 100% clean is nearly impossible (ever rented one of those steam-cleaners to clean your carpet and cleaned the same area over and over, each time seeing more dirt come out?) and trying to clean causes its own problems. Vacuuming stirs up airborne dust and mold spores. Shampooing can leave a damp carpet encouraging more mold growth and even the shampoo may have irritating or even toxic chemicals added.

At the other end of the floor covering health spectrum is ceramic tile. It is made from natural clay materials fired in a kiln. A tile sealed with non-leaded glaze is impervious to mold and bacteria and is well tolerated by chemically sensitive people.

Ceramic tile is bonded to the base flooring using low-toxicity thin set mortar, and can be grouted with home-made, additive-free grout. 2 parts dry, clean sand mixed with 1 part Portland cement can be prepared and added to water to form a slow, damp curing grout.

Although a ceramic tile floor can be expensive up front, due to the labor-intensive installation, they are very durable and long-lasting if properly maintained, and can be considered as comparatively affordable in the long run.

DPMNY Faucet Selections

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The dictionary defines a “faucet” as ‘A device for regulating the flow of a liquid from a reservoir such as a pipe or drum’. This is a bit older explanation not able to describe the utility of the modern faucets. The modern day faucets are something more than a regulator of the flow of water.

They provide a variety of functions in the kitchen or in the bath. The kitchen faucets comes with pullout and pull down sprays facilities for water filtering all in a variety of makes…


faucets, kitchen, bathroom, moen, delta

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The dictionary defines a “faucet” as ‘A device for regulating the flow of a liquid from a reservoir such as a pipe or drum’. This is a bit older explanation not able to describe the utility of the modern faucets. The modern day faucets are something more than a regulator of the flow of water.

They provide a variety of functions in the kitchen or in the bath. The kitchen faucets comes with pullout and pull down sprays facilities for water filtering all in a variety of makes and styles where as the faucets in the bath are plenty available with fine matching accessories to suit the taste and likes of the consumer. However, it would be ideal to follow certain basic principles to make the best use of bath faucets.

Let us start with the bath. High spouts always facilitate easy washing of hands and filling water in cups or tumblers in the bath . The water purification system build in the faucets also makes available purified water for brushing of teeth and mouth washing protecting the teeth with the fluoride in tact. There are even faucets that provide cold drinking water without losing any of its natural minerals by passing the water softening system.

Leaky faucets are a perennial problem. The best way to prevent leaks is to provide a washer free or cartridge based faucet. The latter variety avoids the frequent need to change the misfit or worn out washers. These faucets provide a leak-less performance though out its life. This one-piece technology is conducive for a hassle free usage. The cartridge replacement is a one minute affair by taking out the old one and replacing it with the new one.

Like all plumbing products faucets also calls for quality material for durability and better service. It is always better not to be ‘penny wise pound foolish’. Instead of going for cheaper variety of brands, faucets made of good and durable metals like brass or copper makes the life easier in the long run. These faucets not only give you a superior performance but also present an elegant appearance in the bath. The faucets manufacturers offer a plethora of varieties for the modern bath or kitchen. It is your responsibility to choose the best suited for the kitchen or bath.

The industry having standardized the products, there cannot be any confusion with the selection of this accessory. However one needs to understand the basic details of your sink or bath. For example if one needs to select a faucet for the kitchen it would be appropriate to keep in mind the number of mounting holes under the sink. The exact number of the mounting holes may have to be found out if the same is concealed behind the existing faucets and deck.

The faucets for bath are available in two configurations such as the center set and the widespread set. The former is a 4-width type while the latter is of 8-width variety. Though the styles can be changed the size cannot be changed unless of course you want to replace the sink itself in the bath.

The selection and fitting of a faucet may look simple however a wrong and thoughtless selection may prove futile and end up in a perennial problem and a sheer waste of your hard earned money.

RL Retro Furniture Buying Guide

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The Mies van Der Rohe “Barcelona” Day Bed is an ideal addition to your family room. Comfortable contours and stylish design is the benchmark of this Barcelona Day Bed.The bed has a black walnut wood frame which stands taRL on strong steel chromed legs.

Modern Classic Furniture, Retro Furniture, Bauhaus Furniture, Retro Modern Classic Furniture, Mid Century Classics.

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Retro furniture not just sounds interesting; it also has a rich history to be proud of. The word retro has its origin from the 1950s cutting right through the times with current furniture items. The decade produced a diverse range of ideas and innovative furniture. There were many names and designs that revolutionized the furniture era with modern designs like steel tubular furniture, G-plan and other innovative designs that forms the concept of retro.
Retro belongs to mid century classics and includes Bauhaus furniture and lavish leather sofas that left its modern impression and are stiRL much adored. The style is back and its the rage like never before. But before we purchase some classic retro furniture, let us learn a bit about its history. Belonging to the era and before are some names that have steeped the history of retro modern classic furniture. Telling the tale of some unsung and recognized heroes from the times should include,
Eileen Gray: An unsung name, Eileen Gray was a designer and architect who won acclaim quite later in her life. Her designs were modern and had an individualistic mark that inspired both modernists and the Art Deco. Her collaboration with architect and critic Jean Badovici led to introduction of tubular steel furniture, rugs and lighting for her studio and Galerie Jean D sert.
Joseph Hoffman: An Austrian architect and town planner, he was popularly known as “Quadralateral Hoffmann for his passion for geometric forms. His armchairs and sofas in geometric patterns were a rage with modern classic designer and craftsmen. Hoffman`s modern classic work combined the rationalism of Wagner with geometrical, rectilinear style of decoration influenced by Charles R. Mackintosh.
Le Corbusier : Charles-Edouard Jeanneret-Gris, or more popularly known as Le Corbusier (October 6, 1887  August 27, 1965), was a Swiss-born architect, designer, urbanist, writer and painter. Also recognized for his visionary architecture, what now is called Modern Architecture, Le Corbusier started his venture on furniture design in 1928 after inviting the architect, Charlotte Perriand, to join his studio.
Charles Ray Eames: Charles Eames (1907-1978) and his wife started the modern classics trend in the 20th century with their great designs and child-development toys and puzzles. They were a successful couple whose work designs like seating furniture in mesh, metal legged chairs and other revolutionary designs were much admired worldwide.
George Nelson: George Nelson was a visionary architect and designer with rare talent. His work includes Marshmallow sofa, the Nelson platform bench and the first L-shaped desk, a forerunner to the present-day modern workstation. He also designed graphic waRL clocks, bubble lamps made of self-webbing plastic and developed forward looking, occasionally futuristic concepts.
Harry Bartoia: A futuristic Italian designer, Harry Bertoia envisioned futuristic designs that inspire people today. His patented Diamond chair for KnoRL in 1952 is an unusually beautiful piece of furniture. The unique quality about the chair was its robustness within the light and almost petite frame, making it a huge commercial success. With the success of Diamond chair, the world was introduced to a new materialwire mesh and it was a great icon of modern design.
Marcel Breuer: Marcel Breuer is famous even today for his modern classic designs better known as the Breuer Chairs. WeRL acclaimed for his Simplistic designs combined with neat lines make these chairs exceptionally popular. The range of Breuer chairs includes Marcel Breuer Cesca Arm Chair, Breuer Wassily Chair, and Marcel Breuer Cesca Chair etc. Besides Breuer Chairs, the Breuer label is also known for Marcel Breuer Bookshelves.
Mies Van Der Rohe: A popular architect of his times, Mies Van Der Rohe built one of his most famous buildings, the German Pavilion at the International Exposition in Barcelona, for which he also created a chair called the Barcelona Chair. He was considered a visionary architect whose work was much acclaimed worldwide.
Retro design furniture from the Fifties onwards includes many designers from the USA as weRL as Europe and Scandinavia. From the US, designers had a huge impact on furniture production throughout the, world. Once you have decided on a retro theme of furniture like mesh, steel or leather or perhaps a merger of themes, check out for details like color and finish the manufacturer has to offer. Retro is backing the big way. And you can be sure that it wiRL be in vogue. How you team it up with your modern furniture is a creative venture by itself.

SLAS Ceramic Infrared Sauna Warms Body Directly

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Thinking of building an infrared home sauna? Make sure your new sauna uses 100% ceramic emitters built into the wall of the sauna room for safety and energy efficiency.


ceramic infrared sauna, infrared saunas, home saunas, saunas

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A ceramic infrared sauna harnesses the beneficial rays of the infra-red light spectrum to heal and detoxify the body. Infrared heat is similar to the heat from the sun minus the suns harmful effects on the skin. The technology has been used in hospitals to warm newborn babies and is completely safe to use, even for prolonged periods of time. Infra-red heat warms the body directly through a process called conversion instead of heating the air inside the sauna. The ceramic emitters that come with these far infrared sauna kits are very energy efficient and inexpensive to operate.

Infrared Heater Placement

The best infrared saunas use 100% ceramic emitters built into the wall of the sauna room. A 4′ x 4′ room requires a kit with at least four to five emitters. Place the emitters all around the four walls to receive the maximum benefits from all directions. A 4-person sauna might require a kit with six far infrared ceramic elements. Install three elements above the bench to warm the backs of the sauna bathers, one emitter below the bench to warm the legs and two in front at chest height.

Installation Precautions

Improper installation of a far infrared kit can cause a fire hazard. Ceramic emitters for use in home saunas are UL and CE certified but once installed the sauna itself is not UL approved. A licensed electrician should be hired to install and wire the infra-red heating elements according to local building codes.

Energy Efficiency and Life of Ceramic Infra-Red Heaters

With an estimated 10,000 operational hours per element, far infrared home sauna kits will provide a lifetime of sauna enjoyment. If you consider that a 4 x 4 x 6 room requires a 3 KW electric heater which can be replaced by five 200 W infrared elements for a total of 1 KW in energy usage, it makes sense to go with these kits. The housing, reflector and heat shield of these ceramic emitters are available in stainless steel or galvanized metal and the emitters are convertible to plug into 110V or 220V systems.