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bathroom remodeling

Is Concrete Good for Bathrooms?


 – Characteristics of concrete

 – How to use concrete in your bathroom?

 – Why choose concrete for your bathroom?

 – Limitations of choosing concrete for your bathroom

 – How to maintain the concrete in a bathroom?

 – Which professional to choose for a concrete bathroom?


Are you looking to renovate your bathroom? Consider a modern concrete bathroom—whether raw, waxed, smoothed or tinted, concrete in a bathroom can be used for the floor, walls or bathroom fixtures. With its sleek and modern look, it multiplies the assets in this wet room, even if you have to consider its installation and maintenance constraints. This article presents all the information you need to know before opting for your bathroom remodeling.

 The characteristics of concrete

 Concrete is a mixture of cement, water, aggregates and possibly additives such as resins and colourants. The proportioning of the various additives modifies the characteristics of the concrete.

 Depending on the desired look, the concrete can then be left rough, smoothed, satin-finished or waxed. It can even imitate wood, tiles or even integrate optical fibres to offer magnificent light plays.

 How to use concrete in your bathroom?

 On the floor, and more specifically in new buildings, concrete takes the form of a screed about ten centimetres thick.

 Millimetric, i.e. applied to a thickness of only a few millimetres, can be a self-smoothing cast concrete or a mortar used with a float or trowel. In the latter case, it is also possible to apply it to a wall.

 Concrete can also be poured into a mould to create a basin, a shower tray or a bathtub.

 Why choose concrete for your bathroom?

bathroom remodeling

 A polymorphic material, concrete offers many aspects: rough or sophisticated, smooth, satin or waxed. Modern, resistant, durable and waterproof, it is ideally suited for wet rooms. It can be applied to all types of surfaces and blends perfectly with materials such as glass, wood, metal, marble and slate.

 Anti-slip if its finish allows for it; replacing tiles, for example, avoids the use of joints that blacken over time. It is also hygienic.

 Another property of concrete is that its density allows it to store heat.

 Limits to the choice of concrete in the bathroom

 The surface on which concrete is applied must be perfectly sound, dry and strong enough to support it without breaking over time.

 Its installation must be rigorous and generally requires the help of a professional. The slightest error in alignment can be fatal, and there is no turning back.

 Some surfaces, like waxed concrete, are also sensitive to impact. And all of them can crack if the installation is not perfect.

 Concrete is porous and must be protected with a water repellent or a varnish. Otherwise, grease and acids will quickly leave stains. You should also know that concrete ages and develops a patina over time.

 What maintenance for concrete in a bathroom?

bathroom remodeling

 Abrasive and corrosive treatments should be avoided. You can maintain concrete with a mild cleaning product, such as black soap, by wiping it with a dry cloth. Please avoid stagnant water, which would eventually damage the concrete surface. 

 Tip: if your concrete bathroom (basin, shower, etc.) has become dull, use a sponge impregnated with a specially adapted wax that will waterproof it and restore its shine.

 Which professional to choose for a concrete bathroom?

 With over 30 years of expertise, Sha-Monique Construction will change your uninteresting bathroom into a stylish and efficient refuge where you can kick back and relax after your workday. Give them a call, and remember to share your experience with our readers.

7 Great Steps to Install a Staircase

7 Great Steps to Install a Staircase


– Step 1: Prepare the stringers

– Step 2: Assemble treads, risers and stringers

– Step 3: Assemble the staircase railing

– Step 4: Install the support cleat

– Step 5: Present and attach the staircase

– Step 6: Install the stair railing

– Step 7: Fasten the staircase to the wall

There are several types of staircases: straight, quarter-turn, spiral. To make your choice, you must consider the available space, the desired aesthetic, the desired material and the ease of installation.

A good compromise to reduce the price of your staircase consists of some knowledge of DIY, assembling your wooden staircase yourself, and putting it in place at the desired location. The most uncomplicated staircase to install is the straight staircase.

Follow our step-by-step instructions on how to install a staircase.

1. Prepare the stringers

Adjust the height of the staircase

If the staircase height exceeds the height from floor to floor in your house, it is possible to shorten the staircase.

Important: This must be done before the staircase is assembled.

– Measure precisely the height to be covered from the floor to the top slab (including the covering).

– Saw off the bottom of the stringers and remove a step if necessary.

Good to know: make sure you also have enough clearance, at least 80 cm, at the top and bottom of the staircase to access it comfortably.

Drill the stringers

– Place the 2 stair stringers on trestles, with the notched sides facing up. 

– Every third step, locate the middle of the step notch and drill a 6 mm diameter hole.

– Turn the stringers over.

– Locate the drill holes and enlarge each hole with a 20 mm drill bit, 6 mm deep.

Good to know: this enlargement will allow you, in the final stage, to embed the screw heads and mask the holes with covers.

2. Assemble steps, risers and stringers

Assemble the first stringer and the steps

– Place the first stringer on the floor with notches visible.

– Glue the step notches of the stringer with wood glue.

– Fit the steps one by one into the notches of the stringer with a mallet.

Necessary: insert a martyr shim, i.e. a shim that will receive the mallet blows, to avoid damaging the wood.

– Also, insert the last step in the notches of the stringboard.

Good to know: the last step is narrower than the others because it will rest on the floor.

Add the risers and the second-stringer

– Next, fit each riser into its corresponding groove in the step and into the groove in the stringer.

– Glue the notches of the second-stringer.

– Then, fit it onto the steps and risers.

Important: At least 2 people are required to perform this step.

Attach the assembly

– Carefully check the alignment of the elements in the grooves.

– Screw the steps into the holes previously drilled in the stringers.

– Nail the risers to the steps with utility hole nails.

Good to know: apply the finishing product now to the stringer that will be pressed against the wall.

3. Assemble the staircase railing

The railing consists of a handrail, vertical balusters and a bottom rail. At each end, the railing ends with a support post.

Assemble handrail and balusters

– Position the handrail on trestles.

– Insert a dowel into each pre-drilled hole on the handrail.

– Glue the ends of the balusters with wood glue and fit them into the dowels.

– Secure each assembly with a spike.

Attach the bottom rail of the guardrail

– Glue the upper ends of the balusters.

– Position the bottom rail on the balusters.

– Secure the assembly by screwing.

4. Place the support strip

The top of the staircase will rest on a cleat fixed on the hopper’s header.

– Measure the thickness of the last step.

– For the finished floor, remove the thickness of this step and locate the top of the support strip on the finish side.

– Place the strip horizontally on the marker and check its level.

– Mark the drilling points on the wall through the strip.

– Then, drill the wall and anchor.

– Screw the stair support strip to the header.

5. Fix the staircase

7 Great Steps to Install a Staircase

Draw your marks on the floor

– Present the staircase on the hopper by lifting it to 2 to distribute the weight.

– Place it on the support strip.

– Check that it is perfectly fixed.

– Locate, under the first step and flush with the stringer, the fixing points of the staircase locking brackets on the floor.

Place and fix the staircase.

– Move the staircase back 2.

– Drill holes in the floor for the brackets.

– Peg and screw the brackets to the floor.

– Re-engage the staircase on the cleat, place it and check the wedging.

– Screw it firmly into the cleat.

– Then, fasten the brackets in the stringers.

6. Install the stairway railing

Attach the railing to the end post

– Attach the end post by screwing it into the stringer.

– Prepare to attach the railing to the end post: glue the ends of the railing (handrail and bottom rail).

– Then, place the guardrail on the stringboard and against the top post.

– Screw everything together.

Fix the guardrail on the starting post

– Glue the parts that will be in contact with the starting post: handrail, bottom rail and stringer.

– Place the starting post against the stringboard and the guardrail, hold it in place with a clamp and screw it in place.

7. Fix the staircase in the wall

– Secure the staircase by anchoring it to the supporting wall.

– Drill a hole through the wall through the stringer.

– Insert a dowel and hammer it in.

– Finally, glue the covers to hide the assembly screws and fit them in place.

Your staircase installation is now complete; all you have to do is choose the finish to protect it.

Materials needed to install a staircase.

Knock-in dowel

Man head nails

Wood glue



Fixing square

Step ladder

Gloves, goggles and mask



Flat drill bit

Tape measure

Spirit level

Percussion drill




Wood screws

Screws and dowels


kitchen layout

How to Lay Out Your Kitchen


    – How to successfully design your kitchen

    – The 5 basic rules of kitchen design

Good management of the kitchen space is fundamental!

To help you imagine your future kitchen and visualize it, think of using these design software programs easily accessible on the net, perfect tools that will allow you to optimize your connections (water, gas, electricity) after taking your measurements and indicating your connections (water, gas, electricity) layout of your kitchen.

Making a success of your kitchen layout

We talk about a medium-sized kitchen for surfaces between 10 and 15 m² and large-sized when it exceeds 20 m². Several layouts are possible, sometimes even required, depending on the configuration of your space or room:

    – The linear kitchen: its long shape often forces the furniture to be placed against one of the walls. The rest of the layout must then aim to break this corridor impression.

    – The kitchen is very often arranged in a U or L shape. If it is spacious, you will have the opportunity to place a part of it in the center of the room as an island.

    – Always in vogue, the American kitchen, open to another room, often the living room, offers a more pleasant space and often more light. However, take into account the management of noise and odours.

    – Below 10 m², we speak of a mini-kitchen. The study of its layout must be specific and careful to integrate this surface constraint without suffering too much.

The 5 essential rules of kitchen design

kitchen layout

For an ergonomic kitchen, functional and optimized, you can respect several rules regarding its layout. Indeed, the distance between the elements, the height of the equipment and its distribution are all points to consider to combine comfort and safety in your kitchen. 

    – A kitchen is divided into three areas, which form the activity triangle. This triangle concentrates the main activities of the kitchen and allows for optimal movement. The distance between these three poles should be equal and reduced as much as possible:

        ◦ The cooking area consists of the hobs, credenza, worktop and ventilation hood.

        ◦ The cold zone concentrates the refrigerator and freezer.

        ◦ The washing zone centers around the sink.

    – One flow is to be favoured in the kitchen, that of the dishes: to limit your movements, position the trash can, the sink and the dishwasher as close as possible. This will help you manage your dirty dishes more quickly. Also, place the dishwasher next to your storage spaces to be emptied more easily.

    – Adapt the heights to the users, prioritizing the comfort of the person who uses this equipment the most:

        ◦ from the sink, not having to bend over to reach the bottom,

        ◦ from the hob and worktop,

        ◦ the oven, preferably at eye level,

        ◦ from the hood so as not to hit your head on it,

        ◦ of the shelves, the upper ones at eye level (do not put a shelf beyond 220 cm) and the lower ones at knee level.

    – Observe the dimensions:

        ◦ The elements and large appliances are 60 cm deep (even 65 cm).

        ◦ The worktop is usually 70 cm deep, for a height of 90 or 95 cm, and 115 cm for a bar. Also, leave 70 cm in front of the worktop and 90 cm in front of the open modules.

        ◦ A space of 120 cm is needed to allow two people to pass each other without getting in the way.

        ◦ The kitchen hood should be placed between 60 and 65 cm above the electric plates.

    – Lighting arrangement:

        ◦ Natural lighting, in general, is not enough; carefully consider other light sources.

        ◦ Install powerful lighting and other more directional under the high furniture.

Modern Kitchen

How Do You Conceive Your Modern Kitchen


– What is a modern kitchen?

– Which furniture to choose for a modern kitchen?

– Wall coverings of a modern kitchen

– Floor coverings for a modern kitchen

– Textiles and curtains to create a modern kitchen

The modern kitchen is both aesthetic and practical.

A modern kitchen is special and unique, especially because you can customize it. Often resulting from a designer’s imagination, the contemporary kitchen is original. The diversity of materials used, the colour combinations, the lines’…

What is a modern kitchen?

Above all, a modern kitchen combines different materials such as wood with red melamine particles and brushed steel handles. It is also a different conception of the kitchen space, with the cooking point placed in the centre of the room for a stronger conviviality.

A modern kitchen decoration also often requires a larger budget if you call on a designer. The key is to create total harmony between the furniture, the dishes, the floor, the kitchen linen (tablecloths, towels, tea towels) and the wall coverings.

What furniture to choose for a modern kitchen?

Modern Kitchen

Let’s imagine a modern decor with a trendy red and steel atmosphere. Depending on your space, choose your furniture according to what you have to store. 

Store all your equipment in low furniture and prefer a china cabinet for everything that concerns dishes and kitchen linen. If you are an occasional cook, it is not necessary to overload the space with high furniture. You can hang your most-used utensils on a design rod.

On the other hand, plan a large matching work surface and high furniture if the kitchen is your hobby. If you want to add more wood to your home, Kuccina Design has plenty of suggestions for your walls, ceilings, shelves, staircases, beds, and other eye-catching wood decor and furniture.

A red lacquered table (which will be protected by place-mats for dinners) will be in the centre of the room, accompanied by matching red chairs with brushed steel legs. If you can’t find red chairs, there’s nothing to stop you from dressing them up with chair covers that match the table. 

Match the appliances to the kitchen furniture. For a few years now, household appliances have been equipped with an outstanding choice of colours. 

Here are some tips on how to match your kitchen furniture:

– Try to keep an equal height between the base units, the stove and the worktop for linear harmony.

– It will be helpful to measure the elements before purchasing them.

If your budget does not allow you to buy a built-in kitchen, do not hesitate to hide your appliances (which should all be the same height) with plain grey curtains (depending on your choice) that you will have slipped into a flexible rod and fixed at each end of the worktop for example.

Wall coverings for a modern kitchen

First of all, it is essential to know that with or without a hood, a kitchen gives off grease residues during cooking. It is therefore recommended to choose washable wall coverings:

– A basic wallpaper will wash once or twice, but you will have to change it regularly.

– It is better to tile the kitchen walls, especially if you are lucky enough to own your home. You will then have the opportunity to integrate a stainless steel mosaic frieze, for example.

Also, have a craftsman make a wall covering around your hob that will be easily washable. The cost is certainly a bit high, but you will save cleaning time using a degreaser, sold in spray gun in all major stores.

Finally, you can opt for various coatings such as “tadelakt” colour “cherry”, but take care to varnish it to make it waterproof.

The flooring of a modern kitchen

Indeed, choose tiles. They can be glossy, matte or structured, but they can all be adapted to your needs.

Avoid carpets and rugs: they quickly get dirty and require an additional cleaning budget.

Textiles and curtains to create a modern kitchen

The curtains are very suitable for a kitchen. You will take care to choose them thin, not obscuring the light, and red in the atmosphere we have selected above.

To give them a modern touch, make sure they end with a tip and a tassel that matches the exact measurements of your window.

Modern kitchen decor also includes linens:

A red table runner could accompany the table linen in cotton (very easy to clean) taupe grey.

– The napkins will match and alternate: 2 red napkins and two taupe grey napkins.

– The tea towels must be in grey linen with red squares to achieve optimal harmony.

Hope this post will help you make up your mind about your kitchen renovation project. Remember to share your experience in the comments below.