Monthly Archives: August 2015

Art of Board Energizes Interiors with Vibrant Artisan Tile

This guest post is by Art of Board.

ARt of Board1

The best stories always begin the same way. They begin with where you were. But, what if it was the other way around? What if the place could tell the story? Art of Board’s one-of-a-kind artisan tile surfaces, textiles, and wall coverings do just that. Inspired by board sports and culture, they’ve redefined the interplay between the spaces we inhabit, and how they inhabit us.

Art of Board’s humble roots began in (founder) Rich Moorhead’s Pennsylvania basement. His “waste nothing” mentality led him to create a uniquely innovative product. It wasn’t long before Art of Board’s repurposed skateboard tiles began turning heads in the design community. Growing rapidly, Art of Board expanded to the West Coast.

Now, Art of Board is an international design brand that specializes in the design and collaboration of artisan tile surfaces, textiles and wall coverings for retail, hospitality, commercial and residential environments. They’ve transformed interiors for California Pizza Kitchen, Virgin Atlantic Airlines, Google, Macy’s, Monster Energy and many other high profile clients.

Each tile is a one-of-a-kind
Art of Board surfaces tell a story. They embody the vibe and true soul of board culture. Discarded and broken skate decks are recycled to become one-of-a-kind, handcrafted artisan tile. Each tile comes alive with every scratch, gouge and worn graphic telling it’s own dynamic narrative. Art of Board mosaic tile surfaces are a riot of color and texture that are hard to forget.

Art of Board2

Their installations are infectiously rebellious and playful. They add a splash of hip informality in a world persuaded to accept dull, static environments as “good enough.” Their surfaces have the presence of a “center piece” even from the corner of a room.  They have this special ability to transform any space from an environment, into an experience. And, it’s that unique experience that stays with you.

Grinded and cherished by real skaters until the day they are retired. Art of Board’s Original skate tiles are the real deal. But, not all surfaces are created equal. They also offer stunning photo-realistic ceramic and porcelain tile with imagery of actual used and recycled skateboard decks. Allowing you to lock in the unique “Art of Board” experience, regardless of your specific vision or needs. And, true to cause, each earth friendly porcelain and ceramic tile is made entirely from pre-consumer waste. They truly are guilt free.

The I Ride I Recycle movement is it’s eco-friendly backbone
Its own grassroots skateboard recycling movement fuels Art of Board. I Ride I Recycle saves wood waste from landfills and empowers the community that gives Art of Board life. Used and discarded skate decks are donated rather than trashed. In return, Art of Board supports skate and surf-related charities, local shops and parks. 

And the cycle continues.

Even though they have designs all over the globe, Art of Board does not let their international status cloud their principles. They don’t pretend to be something they’re not. They are honesty, integrity and proof that AUTHENTICITY IS NOT DEAD.

 For more information, please visit artofboard.com

5 Outdoor Summer Recipes

If you’re from Southern California, it’s probably still warm enough that you’re planning out some of your last few barbeques of the summer.  If you have a luxurious outdoor patio kitchen, this is the perfect time of year to go outside and enjoy the weather while it’s still warm.  With Labor Day just around the corner and the holiday season not too far behind, it’s a great time to invite friends and family over for a backyard feast.  Crank up the old range hood, get the fire pit rolling and take a look at these mouth watering recipes as you plan your outdoor dinners.  Patio Kitchen                                                        Photo Credit: tovtov.com

The Cheeseburger Classic
Always a first choice, and something that’s sure to please everyone present, the classic cheeseburger is a simple and delicious menu option for outdoor grilling. Just pick up your favorite brand of beef patties (or form your own!) from your local grocer, and you’ll be all set. For this simple meal you’ll need the following ingredients:

  • Hamburger patties
  • Cheese
  • Hamburger buns
  • Lettuce
  • Tomato
  • Onion
  • Pickles
  • Ketchup, mustard and/or mayonnaise.

Grilled Tenderloin
Another American favorite is the tenderloin, and it’s also easy to make when prepared on an outdoor grill. Add some pepper and garlic for an absolutely savory flavor, and your mouth will be watering in no time. Here’s the ingredients you’ll need to make this meal complete:

  • Cut tenderloin
  • Your favorite seasonings
  • A couple of your favorite side dishes

Buffalo Chicken Sandwich
For the chicken lovers in your home, this recipe will earn your chef skills a five star rating in no time. Here’s what you’ll need to bring that envied buffalo chicken recipe straight to your table:

  • Boneless, skinless chicken breasts cut in halves
  • Salt and pepper
  • Chili powder
  • Your favorite haut sauce and/or buffalo sauce
  • Hamburger buns
  • Onions
  • Tomatoes
  • Ranch dressing

Striped Bass
A delectable treat on a hot summer day, the grilled striped bass is another great option for the grill. With a pinch of garlic and a few squirts of lemon, this dinner promises to have your guests inviting themselves back for more.  For this meal you’ll need:

  • Striped brass
  • 2 fresh lemons
  • 2 cloves of fresh garlic
  • A few sprigs of thyme or oregano

Gyros
If your local grocery mart has any cuts of lamb available, consider gyros as an option for your next full course meal. Gyros can be great by themselves and also make for delicious tacos and sandwiches. Serve up some rice and salad on the side, and you’ll be all set to produce the perfect Greek meal. To start, you’ll need these items:

  • Gyros (leg of lamb)
  • White rice
  • Salad

With all the grilling, don’t forget to make sure your outdoor range hood filters are cleaned regularly to ensure optimal performance. If you have a covered or enclosed patio space, it can be easy for smoke and debris to be caught up within the patio area and remain there for days. Your range hood will ensure that harmful air pathogens are deposited away from the communal area.

Do you know of any other great outdoor dinners? If so, leave them in the comments below, and let us know about your favorite summer recipes.

How to Deodorize Your Kitchen Sink

If you actively cook at home and use the garbage disposal as a way to discard remaining bits of food left on the dishware after a meal, chances are your sink drain may not smell so friendly after a while. Cleaning the kitchen sink can be one of the most disagreeable chores in the house, as bacteria and leftover food particles crowd your garbage disposal and sink drain, causing foul odors to arise and dampen the mood of your kitchen.

CleaningLemons

Most smelly sink drains can be cured with the use of some readily available household cleaning products. So, before calling an expensive plumber that may or may not be able to fix the problem, consider these simple, DIY techniques for ridding your sink of that nasty smell.

  1. Start by wiping down the outer surfaces of your sink. Microscopic food particles and bacteria can build up in and around your sink and you want to make sure to get rid of these before starting on the drain.
  2. Plug the garbage disposal and/or sink drains, and boil a few pots of water until the sink is about half full. Add your favorite degreaser dish soap, and scrub the inside of your sink with a handled scrub brush so as to keep your hands away from the scalding water. Drain then water when finished.
  3. Get two fresh lemons and cut them in half. Generously apply salt to each lemon and use the lemons as a scrub brush to scour the inside of your sink, including the drains and any strainers/stoppers in the sink.
  1. Deodorize the drain by pouring 1 cup of baking soda into the drain. Then, add 1-2 cups of distilled white vinegar and pour over the baking soda. Allow the combo to sit for as long as possible. For better results, try heating the vinegar in the microwave before pouring over the baking soda. Rinse the sink with hot water after it has finished soaking.
  1. Finally, deposit the two lemons into the garbage disposal and allow them to run through the garbage disposal. This will act as a disinfectant, and will also give your garbage disposal a clean, refreshing smell to cover up any remaining bad odors.

Kitchen sink

 

If you are having frequent issues with odors in your bathroom, it may also be a good idea to check your vent hood filters and clean them as necessary. Clogged filters can prevent your range hood from working at its maximum potential and leave it struggling to deposit those unpleasant odors outside of the house.

Have your own home remedy for smelly sinks? Let us know in the comments below, and we may feature your idea next!

Old-Style Kitchen Sink

There is a certain mystic beauty to all things classic, and this by no means excludes kitchens.   Rustic kitchens or cottage kitchens are popular for their reflection of old country homes, which are often seen as warm and friendly places.  One aspect of an old-fashioned kitchen that can really impact the overall kitchen is design is the sink.

Traditional or modern kitchen sinks can damage the style of your kitchen, yet old-style sinks can often be difficult to find, and even possibly hard to imagine unless you grew up with the type of sink you have in mind. If you want something to enhance the style of your kitchen, yet don’t want something truly ancient, it can be difficult to know where to look. Here are a few examples of old-style kitchen sinks that will give your kitchen modern comfort with all the undertones of the old fashion.

The farmhouse sink is one of the most popular styles for antique kitchen designs.  It does not have the usual divider that contemporary sinks utilize to separate the garbage disposal from the regular drain. Instead, try adding a strainer to the bottom of your sink and disposing all other waste with the other household trash.  Another option is to utilize the single drain as a dual garbage disposal and drain.

SinPhoto Credit: plumbingsupply.com

 The farmhouse sink can be either casual or highly sophisticated based on the specific needs of your kitchen. Materials can range from plastic to porcelain and hold an array of colors and designs.

Sink
Photo Credit: plumbingpartsplus.com

An alternative to the farmhouse sink is a trough-like service kitchen sink such as the one below. Made from a stainless steel finish, this design promises to provide a unique touch to your kitchen.  Sitting atop white cabinetry, this stainless steel sink is definitely a focal point in this classic rendition of an old-house kitchen.

Sink1Photo Credit: Jimnastikhareketleri.com

Finally, this 1920’s vintage sink is always a lovely addition to any old-style kitchen. While its design may not work in any kitchen, it will certainly give your kitchen that classic, old-style feel you’re attempting to recreate.

Sink3Photo Credit: cnbhomes.com

Did we miss your favorite classic kitchen sink model? Let us know in the comments below, and tell us about your own experience with old-style kitchens!

Contemporary Kitchen Sinks

When considering remodels and renovated kitchen space, it’s unlikely that the kitchen sink is the first piece of equipment that comes to mind. Yet, while sinks seem like such a small part of your kitchen, they can actually have a very big impact on the impression your kitchen gives off for both you and visitors to your home.

An old kitchen sink can be not only inconvenient, but it can also give your kitchen a shabby and somewhat dirty appearance. Older kitchen sinks tend to be a bit shallow in nature and can make it difficult for washing large pots and pans or other dishware.

Kitchen sink

Photo Credit: thefhd.net

Kitchen sinks from the ‘60s and ‘70s often have a slightly green or yellow tent that is not only unattractive, but very unappealing.

Sink2

Photo Credit: Retroenovation.com

So, if you’re considering a kitchen makeover, take a moment to consider investing in a contemporary kitchen sink. Contemporary sinks can be both practical and aesthetically pleasing.  Many older sinks feature two sides, one that works as a garbage disposal and the other as the primary sink with your average drain at the bottom. However, contemporary designers are beginning to see the benefit to simply having an open sink with a single, dual-purpose drain that also operates as a garbage disposal. These sinks are not only very attractive, but also give you more room to work with, which makes your kitchen work just a bit lighter.

Sink4

Photo Credit: mindyschroder.com

If you’re a fan of the traditional kitchen design, spruce up your kitchen’s style by adding a corner sink, such as the one below.  While similar to a traditional two-part sink, this stainless steel corner sink adds a sophisticated edge to a somewhat simple kitchen design.

Sink5

Photo Credit: tovtov.com

Finally, consider the faucet that will accompany your new kitchen sink. Faucets are the key to enhancing even the most basic kitchen sinks, and come in a wide range of styles and designs.  Generally, any faucet that breaks with tradition will give your kitchen a more contemporary feel. Consider a wall-hung faucet or one with a flat-nosed spout for optimal luxury.

Sink3

Photo Credit: trendier.com

Kitchen sinks may not sound fun, but that probably means you haven’t started shopping around yet.  There are plenty of options and some very brilliant designs. Start looking at the possibilities and let us know what you find.  Do you have experience installing a contemporary kitchen sink into your renovated kitchen? Leave your feedback in the comments below!

Kitchen Hood Cleaning Certification

You can never be too careful about cleaning and sanitization, especially when it comes to kitchen appliances that will be used to prepare ready-to-eat food.  The CDC estimates that approximately 48 million people become sick due to foodborne disease each year. Of these people 128,000 are hospitalized and upwards of 3,000 people die from these foodborne illnesses. Given these numbers, it shouldn’t come as a surprise that any commercial exhaust system requires special licensing and certifications for cleaning. Only certified individuals can oversee the cleaning in order to meet FDA standards.  Obtaining the necessary certification may seem like a hassle, especially if you are a small business owner with a limited crew and endless responsibilities. Check out the information below for a simplified explanation of the process.

Hood Cleaning Certification

Photo Credit: abilityservices.com

Understanding the Certification
The Certified Exhaust Cleaning Specialist (CECS) is most likely the certification you will want to start out with, as every formal establishment needs to have at least once person with this certification.

The Application Process
In order to take the exam for certification, you will need to research local test centers and proctors. Once you have found a location and suitable testing time, you will need to complete the exam application.

Study, Study, Study
After you receive confirmation that you have been cleared to take the exam, ensure that you are thoroughly prepared, as retests can be pricy and often require you to wait a number of weeks before testing again. Guides can be found online, and some colleges and universities offer classes for preparation.

Take the Exam
On the night before your test, don’t stay up cramming. Ensure that you are well rested and have enough time to eat a healthy meal before the test time so that you will be alert and focused for the test. Cramming or avoiding food due to nerves can negatively impact your test results. Arrive early to the testing location and make sure that you bring proper identification and testing materials (i.e., #2 pencils, erasers, etc.). Most testing centers will require that you bring a form of government issued I.D.

Testing

Photo Credit: myarmyonesource.com

Passing Your Exam
Most test results are issued 2-3 weeks from the testing date. Depending on your testing center, test results may be sent via email or regular mail. Be sure to keep your test results for your records, even if they are not the scores you had expected. After passing your exam, you will be sent an I.D. card and letter of certification that will expire one year from the date of issue.

Certification

Photo Credit: samplestemplates.org

Once you or one of your employees has received certification, get to work making sure that your kitchen hood and exhaust system are in good standing. A CECS certification is something to be proud of and you will have valuable knowledge that is priceless in your industry. Share your own testing experiences below. Was the CECS the right choice for you? Did you choose to go with another form of certification? Do you have any guidelines or suggestions for others preparing to take the exam? Let us know in the comments below!

Best Ways to Ventilate an Apartment

If you live in an apartment or another kind of rented space, chances are you don’t have the best ventilation system in your kitchen area, or maybe you don’t have ventilation at all. Ventilation is important for the removal of grease particles, smoke and odors that result from cooking. If you are forced to work around a non-ventilated kitchen, you know that heavy grease buildup can make your kitchen sticky and clammy and be nearly impossible to clean. Smells from cooking done a few days ago still lingers throughout the house, and every time you come in from outside you are assaulted with the unpleasant odors. In small apartments and rented homes, the heat from cooking in the kitchen can spread throughout the house and leave it feeling hot and musty for days.

Small KitchenPhoto Credit: lushhome.com

So, if you live in an apartment or rental where you can’t perform the necessary construction to install a range hood or ventilation system, we’ve cooked up some alternatives for your, shall we say, unique situation.  Check out these five tips to working your way around a ventless kitchen.

Break Out the Fans
One of the best alternatives to a range hood is a fan. No, it’s not the same thing and it won’t be as effective, but the principle is the same. If you have windows in your kitchen, consider investing in an exhaust-only window fan. This fan will pull the air out of your kitchen and deposit it outside, much like your average vent hood. Simply having a window open can help with the odors, and in the fall and winter seasons, can help to keep you kitchen cool.

Fan                                                     Photo Credit: pinterest.com

Create a Cross Breeze
When using the kitchen, try to open as many windows in as many rooms as possible. Part of the reason for odors and the stuffiness that comes with cooking is that this hot, greasy air gets trapped inside the house and has no outlet. Turn on the fans in other rooms, whether they are ceiling fans, bathroom fans or portable fans and open the windows in every room that has one. This will create a create a cross breeze and allow the contaminated air to flow outside of the house, while also bringing fresh air into the house.

Invest in an Air Filter
If you don’t have windows in your kitchen and fans alone aren’t doing the trick, you might look into a portable air filter to keep in your kitchen. Consider a high-efficiency particulate air filter, which works by pushing air into a fine mesh that traps unwanted particles such as grease and smoke. If you don’t have a way to push air outside of the house, consider trapping it so that it cannot linger days after the cooking is finished.

Bring Nature Indoors
Plants can have a calming effect, while also being a great decorative tool in your home. Not only this, but plants also have natural components that filter out harmful organic compounds. Adding some greenery to your kitchen can help clear the air and reduce the amount of unpleasant particles that are left lingering after using the stove.

PlantPhoto Credit: lushhome.com

Stay Safe
The lack of proper air filtration can be very frustrating. You may find that your smoke alarm goes off every time you cook or that you’re noticing an increase in headaches, congestion, or fatigue. These can be signs of improper ventilation and mean that you need to reconsider implementing some alternative ventilation or it could affect your health and safety.  Never remove the smoke alarm from your kitchen, no matter how annoying it becomes. If you have a gas stove, consider putting a carbon monoxide detector in your kitchen to monitor the CO levels in the house and ensure the safety of your home.

Have you ever experienced poor ventilation in your home? If so, how did you resolve the problem? We’d love to hear your comments and feedback!

Venting a Range Hood Outside

Range hoods are common in the sense that the majority of kitchens have them, but what many people do not have in their homes are range hoods that vent the air outside of the house as opposed to simply filtering the air and recirculating it throughout the kitchen. Air ventilation is very important in any kitchen, primarily because of the grease, smoke and debris that crowds the air as a result of cooking and baking. Without proper ventilation, these air pathogens may eventually lead to health problems or food borne illness, so proper ventilation from the start is a necessity.

Under Cabinet Range  Hood                                                       Photo Credit: lovinghere.com

If you already have duct work built into your home, installing your new range hood should be a pretty simple process. On the other hand, if you were previously using a ductless range hood and are looking into switching to a vented range hood that will actually deposit the contaminated air to the outside of the house, you may need some additional construction and design work to make sure that everything is properly set up and ready to go.

Step 1:
Before beginning the ductwork and vent hood installation process, make sure to remove any unnecessary body parts from the hood such as the filter, fan, light housing and electrical work

Step 2:
Lift the hood to its permanent location above the range and outline the section that will be knocked out for the duct with a pen or pencil. The knock-out can also be made through the top for wall mounted vent hoods.

Step 3:
Saw out the rectangular piece from the wall where you made the outline, and drill a hole next to this box for the electrical line.

Step 4:
Repeat the same process for cutting a rectangular hole on the outside of the house. If possible, remove the block from the outside wall from inside of the house to achieve better alignment with the first hole.

Step 5:
You can create a mounting plate by aligning a piece of PVC plate to the hole against the inside of the kitchen. You can affix the plate with screws and a silicone adhesive as necessary.

Step 6:
If possible, get someone to help you hold the vent hood in place as you feed the cable through slot next to the knockout hole, and clamp the range hood into its permanent position against the wall and above the range.

Step 7:
Now it’s time to install your duct work. You can do this by starting with the rectangular hole on the outside of the house. Slide the exterior vent cap into the hole and secure with screws. As necessary, apply a silicone sealant around the edges of the cap to ensure no moisture can seep through on wet or rainy days.

Step 8:
On the inside of the wall, ensure electrical function before sealing off the duct work. Use a wire not to conceal the electrical wiring, and attach the vertical cover to hide the ductwork and finish installation.

Step 9:
Finally, install the body parts back into the range hood and enjoy a cleaner, more breathable kitchen space!

Range HoodPhoto Credit: heimdecor.net

Have you installed a range hood and/or ductwork in your home? If so, how did it go? Did you encounter any issues, or do you have any suggestions for others who are looking to do a self-manned installation?

Kitchen Cabinet and Wall Color Combinations

The cabinets and the walls are aspects of kitchen design that stand out the most. The colors of these areas give personality to the room and will communicate your taste to visitors. Selecting the colors of the kitchen cabinets and walls is one of the most fun steps in designing a kitchen.

While planning your kitchen upgrade or remodel, be sure to also check out our blog post How to Layout an Efficient Kitchen for tips on designing a kitchen that works for you.

Two Tone Kitchens – In two tone kitchens, the top and bottom kitchen cabinets are different colors. This simplistic design breaks up the room and is pleasing to the eye. In this kitchen, the top cabinets are a light color while the bottom cabinets are a dark color. The backsplash matches the top color, creating a smooth transition. The hardware is minimalistic, which allows the color to stand out.

@proyectildesign via Instagram

Below, the top cabinets are white and the bottom cabinets are a dark color. In between, there’s a simple and metallic backsplash. These colors create the perfect backdrop for the rustic kitchen furniture in the room.

@trenderior via Instagram

Luxury

The colors in this kitchen set the stage for a luxurious experience. The cabinets and the kitchen island are white with a gold trim that complements the marble counter top and backsplash. The result is a very elegant room with the combination of the marble and the white kitchen cabinets.

@styleathome via Instagram

Colorful

These kitchens feature more daring and playful colors. Here, the top cabinets feature a blue/green color while the bottom cabinets feature a simple finished wood. The brick backsplash is subtle and allows the green to pop without distraction. The task lighting underneath the top cabinets also help open up the room.

@damaluu via Instagram

In this second colorful kitchen, the cabinets, wall and tile flooring are all a relaxing shade of blue that creates a peaceful color scheme. This is perfect for a family kitchen where meals are prepared and memories are made.

@qcadeiras via Instagram

This example shows how color can be used to make certain areas pop. In this case, the trim at the bottom of the cabinets is yellow and so is the kitchen backsplash. However, the doors of the cabinets are actually white.

@design.is.life via Instagram

In our last example of a colorful kitchen, you can see how different shades of the same color can be used to create depth. Here, the blue cabinets are a lighter shade of blue than the kitchen island. As a result, the island pops.

@kitchendesignnetwork via Instagram

Industrial

In this design, you can see how color works in an industrial kitchen style. The wooden cabinets are accented with rivets while the backsplash is a simple white color. The cabinet doors and the range hood exterior are the focal points of this kitchen design.

@bakesandkropp via Instagram

Other areas of color to pay attention to in the kitchen include the appliances, backsplash, counter top, island, flooring and hardware. All of these will coordinate together with the cabinets and the walls.

Announcing the Range Hoods Inc July Blog Hop Winner!

Today we are happy to announce the winner of the Range Hoods Inc July Blog Hop & $50 Amazon Gift Card Giveaway. The blog hop featured blogs about Home Improvement & Summer DIY to celebrate the season and get everyone inspired to work on their own home design.

July Blog Hop Twitter 4

The winner of the $50 Amazon gift card was randomly selected from the entries on this page. The winner is…Jennifer P.! Thank you, Jennifer, for participating, and congratulations! We hope you enjoy the gift card.

If you missed out on the Blog Hop event, be sure to read the contributing blogs, which you can find by following the links below.

July Home Improvement & Summer DIY Blog Hop Contributors

5 Elements of an Artful Kitchen on Artful Kitchens

Budget Outdoor Décor Hacks on Snazzy Little Things

Tile Tips for an Eye-Catching Backsplash on Tile Talk

Thank you for entering, and we hope you all have a wonderful summer.

About Range Hoods Inc

Range Hoods Inc is an online retailer of stainless steel kitchen range hoods and kitchens products. Feel free to follow us on our social media:

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Check back to our blog for future home improvement topics and giveaways, which we will announce here as they happen. If you have any questions about kitchen design and kitchen hoods, call our team at 1-800-914-9775. We’re available seven days a week to assist you.