Category Archives: Abbotsford Renovation Company

The Shower Everyone’s Talking About

American Made Tile.

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You may recognize this popular Moroccan Fish Scales shower tile taking over your Pinterest or Instagram feed. It’s bold, brave and simply WOW!

Welcome to the world of Mercury Mosaics! It’s all handmade tile, we are not even kidding you, each individual tile starts as a box of solid clay. Made in Minnesota, U.S.A the team can literally manufacture anything from Standard Subway tile to custom colours, patterns, textures and designs as beautiful as the Moroccan Fish Scales.

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This bathroom has a combination of white Subway Tile and Sea Mist Moroccan Fish Scales on adjacent shower walls. It’s really something to look at right? Why don’t more people design their bathrooms with this kind of personal flare? Let’s talk about that.

There are two different types of people who commit to a home renovation. Let’s call them renovation customers who are Safe at Harbour versus customers who Set Sail.

Safe at Harbour. No matter how big or small the job (bathroom, kitchen, flooring etc.) these people are making each decision on product and quality to simply update their home in a clean, modest and future re-sell value perspective trying to pinch the pennies wherever they can. And why not?! They are probably the ones sitting next to you on your next holiday to Paris!

Set Sail. Then there are those who have saved for a decade for their dream home. These types of renovations are more likely to happen room by room. The owner doesn’t justify their choices of hardware fixtures or tile selections by ‘if other people will like it’, ‘will this date quickly?’ or if ‘I can find it cheaper elsewhere’. They choose quality and items they want to surround themselves in.

SeaMistShowerWeb-2These American Made Tiles are not your average Home Depot stock purchased in bulk and sold to thousands of homes around the country. They range in price starting at $34 per square foot to $136 (that’s USD). They are sometimes imperfect in texture and impressions that a different from one tile to the next. Not because of a mistake of some machine, but from the beauty of raw integrity at the hands of real people putting their passions in paint and clay.

We have to say there is great value placed on products like these and we have a huge respect for home owners who are in a position to Set Sail!

 

Home this Summer

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Summer is in the Fraser Valley, the kids are finished school and the weather is warming up, but is your house ready to play? Hang your hammock on the deck, pull out all the beach towels and make sure there is plenty of room in the freezer for those fruity popsicles! We’ve got some ideas to help your home and yard handle everything in the sun. 

1. Summer-ize your entryway. Have a stash of clean beach towels rolled and ready to go or even better throw up a few wall hooks in the hallway for everyone to use. If they are not hanging they can be lined up on the lower shelf of a bench or stowed inside a storage seat. Hang the big beach bag ready filled with sandals, sunscreen, hats and lip balm. Washable woven plastic bins also make perfect containers for the dirty pile at the end of the day.

2. Make room for the kitchen essentialsClear out the freezer to make room for the frozen-pop molds, and free up counter space for all of the local farm produce you’re bound to come home with it is berry season after all! If you have children home, make sure this summer your counter is full of fruit and healthy snacks. Getting enough water during the day is especially important when the weather is hot — make reaching for a glass more appealing by mixing up a batch of soda water in the morning with lemon or orange slices, sprigs of mint, cucumber or all those berries.

3. Sleep overs & summer guests.  You might need to consider where you will able to squeeze in a few extra beds and keep them ready made. The kids like to spring spontaneous sleep overs and it’s nice to offer your guests a bed after a good dinner party.  Tuck a few low beds under your existing ones ready to roll out into the living room, add a bunk for kids, or swap out a couch for a sleeper sofa (some of the modern versions are quite comfy) or daybed.

4. Add a reading nook. It’s always more appealing to read a book in the air-conditioning and better yet a comfy reading nook, complete with chair, book shelf and a side table to hold a glass of lemonade. Bonus: Keep a selection of fun books close by for your child’s interests — and yes, comics and graphic novels count too!

5. Bring forward the shorts & singlets in the wardrobe. Put away the wooly sweaters and socks that you’re not going to need for three months, no point digging through them everyday in search for your favorite summer shirt. It’ll feel like a spring clean, and use it to purge anything that doesn’t fit anymore or that you haven’t worn in years.


6. Freshen up the bathroom. Go through all those draws and shelves in the bathroom and begin removing toiletries, only putting back the products you use daily. If you store your favorite products in a small zipper pouch, you can easily toss it into your suitcase for spur-of-the-moment weekend getaways. Wipe out the draws while you’re at it and invest in some new fluffy white towels. For a real summer-breeze feeling swap out your soap dish for something brighter, or bring in a vase with a big leaf (snipped from the garden). 

7. Make sports gear easy to grab. Balls, helmets and other sports-related gear can quickly get out of hand. Keep things in order by dedicating a storage spot perhaps shelves on the garage walls if you’re short for space or use a large storage box to keep near the yard for all the outdoor fun and games.

8. Dedicate an area for inside games. Clear out some space in the basement, garage or part of the living room to make room for board games and cards, or even the foosball table or pool table. It’s fun to have a season where they are easily accessible and you might just find the whole family will get more involved.

9. Turn the deck into your second living room. Make your outside area as comfy as the inside with ample seating, cushions, candles, fresh flowers and a throw for chilly evenings.   If you don’t enjoy your deck as much as you would like because of bugs, you may want to consider adding an overhead fan (mosquitoes and flies tend to stay away from moving air) or try some scented candles.

10. Boost your backyard’s party appeal. Why not make this summer the year you finally get that outdoor feature you’ve always wanted? Fire pit, grilling area, pizza oven, outdoor shower, movie projector, hot tub — the possibilities are practically limitless. Don’t forget sometimes it’s as simple as having the right shade cover to entice you to spend your time on the green grass. A free-standing umbrella is ideal and will allow you to move the shade right where you need it. 

Our Favourites in Downtown Abbotsford – Featuring Field House Brewing Co.  

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Last night we kicked back and enjoyed some East Abby crafts beers and live music under a twinkling string of lights on a couple of lawn chairs (with green grass under our feet!) How many places can you say you’re doing that on a week night in May when it’s not in your own backyard?
In our very own City of Abbotsford that’s where! Field House Brewing Co. opened in January with the fire-place ablaze! Over ten varieties on tap offering a full craft beer experience.
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The building itself used to be a industrial mechanic shop, now converted into a tasting room, massive lawn & brewery on-site.
We were thrilled to meet Josh Vanderheide when visiting Spruce Collective one rainy Saturday when he was selling his Field House merchandise (P.S if you’re looking for a couple of neat caps, sweaters or tees you’ve got to check them out). Turns out it was a timely meeting as the old mechanic shop was in the middle of major renovations for a complete overhaul and Josh was just in the process of deciding on the new flooring for the Tasting Room.
555da233ad9c9a774d7a2218a40d0ea2dcf01ac47c1ceb6ed5cdb01621aa5c25_fullRight up our line of work we made sure we looked after our fellow beer drinking buddy by supplying 900sq/ft of loose lay vinyl plank. Increasingly more popular than ever this flooring is much more water resistant to a laminate or hardwood.
Proving to be most beneficial for the crew after a spill from a beer keg when they needed to lift an area of the flooring (no glue, nails or tape) to dry out completely avoiding future water damage and mould. It was such a relief to Josh that they could simply put all the flooring back without hassle or additional cost. We continue to recommended this product for residential homes as well as commercial buildings especially now they come in so many varied colours.
What we truly appreciate about this new shop on the block, is the spirit of community the brewery has brought to the heart of Abbotsford, and the collaborations it continues to make with other small local businesses.
 Follow them on Instagram and you won’t miss the $5 beer days, lives music nights or upcoming events they spring. It’s going to be a fantastic summer to stretch out on the grass and bring the kids because there is plenty of action in the Field CubbyHouse for them!
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Our Favourites in Downtown Abbotsford – Featuring Spruce Collective

Spruce Collective shop front

We are so fortunate to live and work in the vastly growing and vibrant City of Abbotsford.

This month we are sharing our favourite retailing businesses in Downtown Abbotsford that we have had the privilege of working with. Whether it has been for  custom reclaimed furniture, flooring renovations, or new collaborations it has all been so refreshing to work beside others passionate about this community!

Spruce Collective
The Market by Spruce Collective
Duft & Co Bakehouse (and soon to open Duft & Co BrickHouse)
Field House Brewing Co.

Kicking off with Spruce Collective, a darling retail store with a curated collection of all things old + new. Located on the delightful Montrose Avenue, we have not met a more generous or advocating bunch of owners. This team endorses many of the start up businesses and is always finding new ways to collaborate to bring excitement to the street. Popular for its storefront appearances you might just catch them in a Hallmark movie or two. When you step inside you will find a range of homely goods, clothing, jewellery, kitchenware and a cute kids corner.

We (the team at Griffin Co) enjoy browsing the shop to find vintage treasures to stage our properties for sale. Hence why we love their most recent venture (a second store) called The Market by Spruce Collective which pushes all our buttons! The shopfront has moved locations and now you can find them directly across the road to the main store. Now believe me when I say, it’s not your average antique store! All vintage, all of the time, it’s a collection of hand picked local vendors under one roof. You must go see their latest batch of store treasures – it changes everyday.

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With each changing season Spruce has something new and wonderful to share and is a constant source of energy for the entire street. We could not be more grateful for their contribution.

A Bright Evolution

slider1ex-920x389Have you been thinking about simple ways you can improve your home? A feature light fixture just might do the trick!

I am sure that when the brilliant minds (I won’t specify names as we all know that there is controversy there – and lets face it they were all brilliant) who first came up with the idea of the lightbulb set their minds to work they had no idea that it would evolve from a utilitarian product into a show stopping, mood setting, piece of art that we all hang from our ceilings and walls.

The evolution of the light bulb (and it’s associated encasement) is really quite extraordinary. We’ve come from nothing more then a wood stand with brass knobs and a glass tube with a carbon filament in the 1800s (incandescent) to fluorescent in the early 1900’s, halogen in the mid 1900’s and finally followed closely after by LED.

All the while we are exploring our creativity with the casings that surround these brilliant feats of science. There are so many options now available when it comes to lighting in your  home, and instead of being overwhelmed by them select the one you love looking at!

For Businesses thinking about using Instagram

10k instagram followersSocial media is without doubt the fastest growing marketing platform to date. Gone are the days where paid advertising gets you directly in front of your target market and with the only results.
The latest statistics report Instagram alone has over 400 million monthly active users sharing on average 80 million photos per day. If you haven’t already tapped into this incredible social media app – literally get tapping!
As a company we never could have imagined gaining the interest of followers that we have in just a short six and half months! We’re talking 10,000 followers all of sudden watching our brand, seeing our everyday services and liking our products. Some are far across the globe but others are practically next door. I’ve handed a business card to someone in a shop before asking about flooring and the person behind me said, ‘I know Griffin – my wife follows you on instagram! She was just showing me photos last night.’ Small world huh?
It’s not just about being popular either, it’s really exciting that we can engage with people on a daily basis. Sharing our achievements and helping them create homes they love to live in. Personally, I think this is just the beginning for professional businesses successfully using social media. I am excited to see how it evolves.

Spring Cleaning in Two Days-Part II

CarpetThis weather makes me want to open all the windows and finally let the warmth of the sun in! If you need a re-cap on how to get started with your Spring Cleaning, head over to our post last week and look at Spring Cleaning in Two Days – Part I.
Today’s list looks more daunting then it really is. It’s unlikely you have large areas of carpet, tiles and wood floors throughout your house so only a few may apply. Get straight into it and you’ll be finished in no time.
  • Cleaning your carpet. It’s important to keep carpets looking nice all year round and there are simply things like taking off your shoes when you get home and vacuuming regularly that will all make a big difference in your home. Spring is the time to really get down on your hands and knees and get rid of the stains, use some of that arm muscle and make it look new again.
  • Caring for your Tiles. Cleaning bathroom and kitchen tiles with a cleaner that has a neutral pH on the label. You can also mix baking soda and water for a homemade cleaner: Pout 1/2 cup of baking soda into 2 gallons water and mix very well. Then apply the liquid with a good mop. For grout, use the same baking soda and water mixture and use that arm muscle again.
  • Caring for your wood floors. The keys to keeping your wood floors looking new is to use trivets or saucers under plants to avoid water damage, use furniture protectors to avoid scratches and damp-mop once a week (with my personal favourite cleaning item in the house) the norwex mop (great for tiles to).
  • Shine up the Kitchen. Wipe down the cabinetry doors, inside & out. If this is something you do on a weekly basis I commend you! Take the time to wipe all the handles and open each one and get rid of any drips that may have caught on top.
  • Spruce up the Fridge. It really takes less time then you think. Take a cloth soaked in warm soapy water and wipe down all the shelves and get the drawers sparkling again.
  • The greasy exhaust fan needs a good clean to. To often people forget all that delicious food you are cooking on your stove top often leaves a thick greasy residue underneath the exhaust hood. You’ll need a hot preferably more grippy cloth to get rid of this.
  • Polish the Silver & Copper. Use a toothbrush and Hagerty Silver Foam on your silver because it’s not too abrasive and it’s water-soluble. Or cut a lemon in half and sprinkle salt over it and rub straight onto your copper. This will gently remove the build of stains and discolouration.
You will deserve a bubble bath by the end of the day, but honestly you & your house will be better off for it. Well done!

Spring Cleaning in Two Days – Part I

1203-8555 Granville StSpring is coming.
The days are longer, the buds are appearing and I’ve noticed a few squirrels bounding about!
But what does Spring mean in your home? Most people conjure up images of dusting and packing up old items in boxes to donate. It doesn’t sound that appealing I know “Urgh, cleaning! Right?!”
It’s time to clean the house. And I mean really clean it.
Polish any silver, wash the windows, wipe down the lightbulbs, wipe down the walls. Everything will gleam and glisten. The effect will be cleansing and make you feel like you have accomplished something.
Give yourself two days and you’ll be feeling a spring in your step in no time.
  • Organising Closets. Organizing your closet is the first step to organizing the rest of your home. Get rid of unused clothes and accessories, and organize the rest by how you get dressed in the morning. Your closet will look appealing, and your everyday routine will be easier.
  • Create a different mood. For easy makeovers changing the textiles in your bathroom and bedroom heck even the table linen can add a fast and easy change. Switch things out seasonally or for a special event, or whenever you want to play with a certain colour or pattern.
  • Reorganize bookshelves. Sort books by size and subject. Remove and discard any ripped dust jackets. Play with how you line the books, some vertically, some horizontally, in a rhythmic pattern. This will relieve the monotony of rows.
  • Wash all the windows. Inside and out and take the time to dry them as well to make sure you’re not left with water marks.
  • Ward off the dust and wipe down all your lightbulbs, give the blinds a spruce and any windowsills (even the higher ones you don’t see).
Then go make yourself a cup of tea and put your feet up. Don’t forget to jump online and see Spring Cleaning in Two Days – Party II next week to finish the job. You’re almost there.