Sunday, November 20, 2011

Brilliant Upgrade

New and Improved...
An advertising nomenclature that's all too familiar and yet it baffles me at times. The "new" part is inevitable.  But I have to admit the "improved" aspect often has me stumped? I know this may seem trivial to some, but  I have to admit that I was a little unnerved to see that Swarovski had changed the number of facets on their flat back crystals.

                                                                                                  

Seems like I should have had some advance notice. It's true that these Austrian crystals have become so much a part of the Susan Goldstick identity, that I guess it threw me a little off balance to see that our decorative hardware now has a new look. I would have liked to be a fly on the wall at the meeting of the Swarovski project team, who in their quest for more brillance, determined that the rose chaton was looking dull and needed an uplift.

Mini Sunflower 2" - new brilliance

So if our knobs, finials and switch covers are looking more radiant these days. it's because they truly are. But I can't help feeling a bit nostalgic about the now retired chaton crystals, maybe not as brilliant, but just as beautiful nonetheless.

Mini Tiki 2" - old brilliance

Monday, October 10, 2011

Glass Switch Cover Installation - Atypical Stuff

I know I'm partial, but our colorful beveled glass switch plates are truly unrivaled when you check out what is available in the marketplace. I wish it was possible to capture their unique beauty on the web. But pictures can't possibly display the dynamic nature of glass reflections and how the light affects the color,  They are truly dazzling "in person". However,  the purpose of this post is not to rave, but to offer some helpful installation tips.

One of the unique aspects of a glass wall plate is that unlike your typical switch cover, it's flat in the back. Installing a glass switch plate really should be no different than putting up any other.  In a perfect world all electrical boxes are positioned properly where the metal braces are flush with the wall.  However you may run into a problem if your electrician installed the electrical box too close or too far from the wall opening.  Each of these conundrums has a different solution. So here are some tips and diagrams to help you tackle either issue.  

Scenario 1 - Electrical box is positioned too far from the wall opening.

If the conduit box in the wall is positioned too far from the wall opening, you may need to use shims behind the receptacle to move it forward. We always include vinyl screw spacers in every order of glass switch covers. These little tubes are sleeves that fit over the mounting screws behind the receptacle. You can use these screw spacers to bring the box closer to the wall opening. The following steps show you how to use them.


1. Measure the distance from the front wall surface to the conduit box flange.

2. Cut a vinyl screw spacer at the measured length and install one on both the top and bottom mounting screws behind the flanges of the electrical fixture.

3. Spacers intact, place the electrical fixture back in the conduit box in the wall.

Scenario 2 - Electrical box is positioned too close to the wall opening.


If the conduit box protrudes too far, you won't be able to set the glass plate snugly against the wall because there may be a gap. This can easily be resolved with an acrylic spacer. They're available in single, double and triple templates and we can order them for our customers.

So there you have it. My "ehow" contribution on tips to handle those unusual situations with glass switch plate installations.

Monday, July 25, 2011

Whatchamacallits - The Special Needs in Drapery Hardware

If every window was a uniform size surrounded by ample wall space on all sides, choosing drapery hardware would be as easy as A B C. Whether it be the curve of a bay window or the one oddball window in the room that's has special needs, some design issues can be mind boggling for the average person. And to make things more complicated, many people don't know the name of the thing that will solve their dilemma, or in many cases, that such an item even exists. But that doesn't mean you have to be a professional to decorate a window.  It doesn't hurt to have a bit of knowledge about some of the problem solving pieces that will come to the rescue. So here we go, I'll start with the most common concern. Attaching 2 poles together to give the length you need calls for a splicer screw also known as a dowel screw.

Another issue that comes up is the window that's squeezed into the corner of the room. In a perfect world there's plenty of room for finials on both ends of the drapery rod.  But what if you bump into this scenario where a window is positioned close to an adjoining wall, allowing too little space for the drapery finial?  This is when you'll need an end cap for one end of the rod.  The end cap is not only a problem solver, but the asymmetrical design can often feel more dramatic as the focus leads the eye to the more decorative finial.
A real brain twister is how to run drapery rods around a bank of bay windows or curves. A swivel joint bracket is a pretty handy solution to this situation. It allows you to position the pole so that it can handle a curve or windows that meet at an angle. Another thing that puzzles people is the purpose of the  hole in our cup brackets. If you're wondering why there's a hole there, this is where you can use a screw to secure the rod to the bracket so it doesn't move.  And if you want to cover up the hole, little wooden plugs will do the trick.  Pictured here in raw wood, we can obviously do a paint treatment to match any bracket or finial in our collections. So if any of these special needs are speaking to you- then speak to us and we'll order it for you.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

The Big Happening in Kitchen and Bath

I had the opportunity to walk the Kitchen and Bath show in Las Vegas last week. KBIS is the annual event where manufacturers unveil their new innovations. It's always exciting and inspiring to see the latest industry trends and then there are the fashions that "speak" directly to me. This year I couldn't help noticing the focus on shiny surfaces and textures with glimmer. High polished chrome fixtures, sparkling quartz counter tops, dazzling stainless backsplashes and the twinkling glass tiles - it was all gleaming at me.

Some products that are right in step with the favored palettes of 2011

I was happy to see that cabinet styles ran the gamut with a stunning selection to meet any particular taste or style. Much of the new and groovy in cabinetry showed an emphasis on what's inside the drawer or behind the door. It's obvious that lifestyle trends keep moving toward the uncluttered with everything from the coffee pot to the fridge tucked inside a cabinet or drawer.Of course, through it all I kept a keen eye on the color vibe.


Capturing an earthy tone, predominant color schemes focused on subtle blues and sandy beige accompanied by all shades of gray from metallic to slate. Spots of vibrant hues were popping up mostly in kitchen treatments primarily in sunny yellow, bits of avocado green and all personalities of orange from copper to coral to citrus. Stimulated by the show's energy,

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Not Just for Closet Doors - Step Inside

A growing trend in our modern lifestyle is the evolution of the closet turned dressing room, a place for convenience, orderliness, and ambiance. Many years ago I had a visit from a representative from California Closets.

A piece of the conversation that stands out in my mind is his  remark about a whole new attitude toward the humble space to organize your wardrobe.

He told me that when people do a fabulous closet renovation, they want to show it off and will invite their house guests in for a viewing. At the time, I thought it sounded like a sales pitch, but I knew he was making a significant point. 

I guess it's easy to see where I'm going with this. Yes, our knobs and pulls put the extra dazzle on built-in closet drawers, where  boasting rights are well deserved. Imaginative uses of our drapery hardware is also a sweet addition to the well appointed closet.

You can always turn a finial into a robe hook or a tieback into a jewelry hanger.  In any case, I like this modern closet trend... you don't have to be a star to have a dressing room!