What to do to make your Bathroom Pop

Pop is a bit overused in the interior décor world, but it does a great job describing what happens when elements form a visual interest or response. This can come in the form of a yellow towel in a black and white room. Or maybe it is colorful Mexican tile for the backsplash. The fun part is you get to pick the Pop.

When you walk into a bathroom, the tub/shower, toilet, flooring and vanity all scream out for the most attention. The finishes on all of these immediately inform the visitor of the age and quality of the room. Do the finishes say the home is in disrepair? Dated? Recently updated? Or does the room scream out “Hello, it is so nice to see you!” We want that one.

It is very affordable to update the shower and especially smart if it is in the slightest degree of disrepair. Address failing issues first to curb long-range problems and create a foundation for the fun to follow. Now that you know you aren’t going to create mold or rot out the floor joists, it is time to choose the color your really want. Have you always wanted a sage green bathroom like you see at spas that encourages relaxation? Or do you want something very neutral that will allow you to constantly change other things in the room? For resale value and ease of design, neutral is a wise decision. However, expressing yourself is also important. Don’t sacrifice your dreams for resale value. Simply consider that the colors you choose for the large elements will dictate future decorating options. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing. In fact if you have always wanted a canary yellow or fuchsia toilet, because it makes you smile, then do it. You will live it—no one else.

What is happening with the flooring? Is it a tile floor that needs to be addressed? Do you want someone to come in and fix your floor, tub, and counter? Refinish First can come in and give all of these elements makeovers that make them new and in the color of your liking.

Now that the tub, toilet, flooring and counter are addressed, what remains? Lots. Do you like the vanity lights? What about the overhead light? This is a great time to make upgrades that will work with your new finishes if budget permits. If not, not to worry because refinished surfaces will be screaming “hello.”

However, if budget permits, consider shopping for lighting and faucets at the same time. This will help you choose things that will work together stylistically. If you want to make things more modern with your lighting, you probably don’t want to get more decorative with your faucets. Modern will be about simple and clean lines. However, if you love Victorian influences, this is a great time to think about the types of lights and faucets that will be attractive together.

So much is going right with this room. Have you considered repainting? If nothing else, even if it is the exact same color, it is a great time to update the paint. It freshens a room and makes cleaning easier. The walls may have been bumped from years of living and this is an ideal time to fix.

Hang in there because we are almost done. Do you need a shower curtain or do you have a door or doors that keep in the water? Shower curtains take up a lot of visual space so carefully consider what sort of color and texture you want to add to this thoughtful space. It will be more obvious than the faucet—initially. But that faucet will have its day in the sun so don’t think it isn’t important.

Last, but not least, do you have or need hand and bath towels for the room? Do you like the color? How do they look with the new finishes? Is there money left over to buy something new or do you want to put this on hold? Now or eventually, consider soaps, soap dishes, mirror, towel and cabinet hardware, door handle set and electrical switches—all interesting elements that will reflect your design and color preferences.

Once the biggest parts are addressed, namely the counter, floor and tub finishes, scream out “nailed it” or “made it pop” and walk through the house with a smile. Enjoy your new bathroom!


What is the Refinish First Counter Finishing Process?

Before we go into the nitty gritty of how the magic happens, we want to mention that refinishing counters is much more affordable than starting over with new construction.

The Refinish First process is a non-acid and works on laminate, Formica, ceramic tile, Corian, Silestone and cultured marbled surfaces. Is your countertop a refinish candidate?

To resurface, the surrounding area is masked off to protect during the process. Then there is a two step process to completely clean all dirt and grease from the surface which is very important to ensure proper bonding. All chips and breaks are filled at this time so they can be sanded until smooth to blend seamlessly. This next step, which is what sets Refinish First apart from many, is the use of its own proprietary bonding agent that enables proper adhesion between the old and new surfaces. With this comes a great finish that is durable, long lasting and comes with an adhesion warranty.

Here is the part that most people care about and that is the new surface. It is possible to match most colors or to go with our most popular finish that look like stone available in several different colors. The technologically advanced coating is very attractive and durable. With proper care, the new finish can increase the longevity another 10 to 15 years, which is found with manufacturers like Kohler and American Standard.

If you are considering having a counter or tub refinished, contact Refinish First to set up an appointment for a free estimate.

Is My Countertop a Candidate For Refinishing?

Sometimes this is a question of what type of counters does Refinish First refinish, while other times it is a question of identifying the existing material.

To answer the first question, Refinish First refinishes laminate, Formica, ceramic tile, Corian, Silestone and cultured marbled surfaces (fiberglass too but this is more of a tub thing and less of a counter thing).

Ceramic tile is easy to identify because of the grout lines and the fact that it is all over the place. However, other materials can blur together because the names are interchangeable, misnamed or often the counter has been around for 10,000 years and the material name is long forgotten. Not to worry.

The first step is to contact Refinish First to come out and determine if your counter is a viable option, answer any other refinishing questions and provide an estimate. It is hard to make a plan if you aren’t sure where to start. Find out so you can move to step two.

8 Awesome Kitchen Gadgets

Can you say kitchen fun? Is there anyone who doesn’t love a new fun looking or a time saving kitchen device? Time to enjoy some wonderfulness. Here is a list in no particular order.

1. Speedy Ice Pop Maker


2. Corn Stripper


3. Digital Measuring cup


4. Non Stick Mats (although not sexy, so awesome).


5. Klipy Pot Lid Stand


6. Nesting measuring cups and spoons


7.  Two in one whisk


8.  Scizza Pizza Scissors


Kitchen Remodeling Elements

In order for a kitchen to have an integrated appearance, there are a number of elements to be considered. Here is a partial list in order of visual prominence: counters, cabinets, appliances, wall color, lighting, backsplash and hardware.  Each element has its own finish and color, which deserve consideration.

Integrating these elements doesn’t always mean replacing everything; it just means paying attention to how the paint color and cabinets will work with your counter choice. The first step is to contact Refinish First to select your new countertop, which will inform your other decisions.

Changing cabinets is very expensive, so this is not recommended. Knowing the cabinets aren’t changing, how can you adjust the wall and ceiling paint colors to work in a flattering way? Do you want to increase contrast and add something very different? Do you want to go more neutral than what is there? Paint is one of the least expensive and most noticeable ways to make home improvements.

Additionally, once you know the counter finish, do you have a backsplash that will be the same as the counter or do you need to install something? If so, do you want it to blend with the counter or do you want it to pop out? Each person has their own color ideals for a nice kitchen.

At this point you have picked a great new counter finish and have a wall color you like. For this example we’ll assume the appliances are staying, but another element worth thinking about is the cabinet hardware. With a new counter, your kitchen is looking great which sometimes draws attention to some of the older and dated parts. Updating hardware is very easy and one of the least expensive things you can do to refresh your cabinets.

If your kitchen still isn’t coming together like you envisioned, consider the appearance of your appliances, lighting, sink, windows and flooring. How are they impacting the overall appearance of the kitchen?

As mentioned above, start with the counter and work your way out to all the other elements. Have fun creating a new and improved kitchen.


What are you doing with your backsplash


Many kitchen counters come with a backsplash of the same material as the counter. This is great for refinishing because of the consistency created. What if you have a tired counter and a dilapidated cracked backsplash? No problem. Refinish First can definitely address both situations. Contact Refinish First to get an estimate to refinish the counter along with repairing and refinishing the tile to match. Refinishing is far more affordable than replacing.

If you aren’t a fan of the current backsplash and want to try something new, there are many interesting options.

Tile is a great option because it is attractive and often affordable (if you steer clear of custom and gold plated tiles). Even better, there are a wide range of colors, shapes and textures. Throw in some of the interesting elements you can include between tiles and it becomes a visual point of interest that makes a big difference in a kitchen.

Ceramic is no longer the only material used for tile. It is possible get interesting glass and marble tiles that are installed in the same way as traditional tile, but reflect the uniqueness of their materials.

In addition to traditional ceramic tile, it is possible to use less traditional materials like cork (or wine corks), stainless, small river rock, ceiling tin, wallpaper and even reclaimed wood. Lots of options.


When choosing a backsplash, it is important to consider the color of the counters, cabinets and wall paint. The backsplash will make contact with all three of these parts of the kitchen and it is worth considering if you want them to blend, be slightly different or be on opposite ends of the spectrum.


Oh the beautiful claw foot tub

There is nothing quite as romantic as a claw foot tub. However, if the tub is chipped and in overall disrepair, it can be an eyesore. Contact Refinish First to get it refinished and brought back to its original splendor.

Often homeowners aren’t sure if they should refinish or remove the tub. It is much more affordable to refinish and is guaranteed to continue to be visually interesting.

If the tub is being moved around, it is worth removing the feet, cleaning and painting. They will really look great with a beautifully refinished tub.

Now that the claw foot tub looks great, the faucet might be looking tired. Hopefully that isn’t the case. However, if the budget allows, it is possible to get new faucets with retro designs that work perfectly with claw foot tubs. There are all sorts of finishes, price points and even the possibility of adding a showerhead. A retro designed faucet is a wonderful way to accentuate the beauty of the tub.

If you intend to actually use the tub as a shower you’ll need to add a fashionable shower curtain too. There are curtain holders available that attach to the ceiling and can be matched to the faucet, which is a very attractive design element. Throw in subway tile or hexagons and you have an updated Victorian bathroom.