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Building With Tomorrows Technology Today...

Today, Universal design and ergonomics drive bathroom design

Bathrooms are one improvement that can increase the value of your home.

In the Old Days, they were referred to as "Water Closets"


Some homeowners are fortunate enough to have adequate bathrooms, but some are not so fortunate. The American home can have as many as three bathrooms per occupant. Most homes in other countries are happy to have one indoor bathroom with running water. That said, many American families grow, and soon need additional bathrooms to meet the challenges of the 21st century. The per square foot dollars spent on bathrooms rivals any other investment in your home, so important consideration should be given whether or not such an investment is warranted.

Take one example, the powder room. Depending on your social structures, one could place such a room close to the mud room and serve both as the main floor bathroom and a powder room.

Most children use bathtubs at young ages and soon outgrow the daily use of a tub—maybe one bathtub to share among the family. Does the master bedroom need its own bathroom or is it just an expression of the life style we want to live? All good questions to ask you builder or remolder.

The Onyx Collection

Cabernet Design is a proud Installer and distributer of The Onyx collection.


What is Onyx you say? It closely resembles a corian surface for the bathroom. From custom shower bases to wall panels that conform to any bath configuration—we can make it happen! With our variety of finishes and accessories you are sure to make a long-lasting impression.

Shower Panels Of All Types And Finishes

  • Gloss Finish
  • One of the most popular finishes, the smooth Gloss Finish gives a classic appearance with an easy-to-clean, smooth surface. All colors are available in the Gloss Finish. Inlay Stripes and Picture Inlays are also available in the Gloss Finish.

  • Matte Finish
  • Onyx’s Matte Finish “look” is achieved by lightly sanding the panels and then applying a permanent sealer to the surface. There is little to no shine on Matte Finish Panels. Many colors are available in a Matte. No Picture Inlays are available. Matte Finish Onyx uses natural 12" x 12" stone tiles as mold to make the beautiful accented panel. This gives each wall panel, which is cast in one piece, the look of stone tile without the worry of leaking grout seams. Same price as Gloss and Slate Finish. All our colors are available in the Stone Tile Finish. No Picture Inlays or Stripe/Border Inlays available.

  • Slate Finish
  • Onyx Slate Finish shower walls have an even texture of natural slate across the entire surface. Same price as Gloss Finish. All our colors are available in the Slate Finish. No Picture Inlays available



    Many homeowners associate the look of ceramic tiles with a bathroom floor. Today the choice of flooring can be anything from bamboo to slate. Today’s technology can seal any surface to protect from water damage. So don’t forget to get a second design look, you don’t have to settle for a standard tile floor.


    For many people, affability is the deciding factor. In that case, you need to know that natural stone will be expensive, but it usually pays back at resale time. In most cases a synthetic material is more affordable. Installation Seriously, don't do it yourself, especially if you've chosen an expensive material such as stone, or one that requires a trained fabricator like quartz or concrete. Many manufactures often will not honor a warranty if you fail to have their material installed by a qualified person.

    Let's Talk About Fixtures

    The fixtures you choose for your new bathroom will say much about your lifestyle. You could seek the advice of our qualified personal to help with your choices, but chances are you'll be doing a lot shopping on your own. I will give your some ideas here to get started with. Remember to stay within budget—some fixtures offered today are very temping but can chew up a budget quickly.

    Efficient Toilets

    Toilets are estimated to consume about 30% of your total water usage, and showers close to 40%.Today’s toilets are far more efficient in design of water usage. Vitreous china is still the material of preference, but there are many more styles and options available today. Sizes are standard among most manufactures, but the elongated bowl will extend about two inches more into the room than a standard toilet The latest in technology includes the dual-flushing system, which gives you two choices in flushing options: a partial flush which releases a small amount of water for liquid and paper waste, or a larger flush which releases a greater volume of water for solid waste. The savings from using a dual flushing toilet can be up to 40% less in water consumption

    Faucets and Fittings

    For quality, inquire about the materials used for the faucet’s construction. The best choices are solid brass or a brass base metal-type fixture, which are corrosion-resistant. Avoid the cheap plastic fixtures at all costs, they just don’t hold up. You can find just about any fixture in a variety of finishes like polished, satin matte, nickel, bronze, pewter, copper, chrome, and enamel. For continuity of finishes, coordinate tub and shower faucet with those you select for other fixtures and hardware (i.e. door hinges) on the project at hand.

    Here a few things to keep in mind

    • Start with a list of "must have" amenities and let your budget drive the rest of the design
    • Choose the right flooring materials, traffic and the amount water can have devastating effects on the life of your floor
    • The use of natural materials such as stone or wood add warmth to the room
    • Install good lighting—it’s important to properly light your bathroom, especially for those who use makeup.
    • Incorporate Eco-friendly fixtures to conserve water use
    • Dual flush toilets conserve water without sacrificing performance
    • Look for the Water Sense label, which gives the homeowner a product that is efficient in performance and water conservation
    • If you have the room, double sinks and vanities can speed up your mornings
    • One way of building green is reusing or re-purposing fixtures you already have
    • We encourage you to interview several contractors, including Cabernet Design

    A Few Closing Thoughts

    Some households have a real need to add a bathroom. Most bathrooms have a life expectancy of 10 years. One wonders why such a short live life cycle of a bathroom. The reason is that our bathrooms see more daily use from all family members than any other room in the house. This typically lends itself to a remodel every ten years or so.

    One could certainly write a book about remodeling a bathroom but I only have a limited amount of space to inform you of some of the important aspects of bathroom design. I could've certainly covered more details about lighting, windows, ventilation, colors materials, and patterns but I like to leave this to my customers, for it is their personalities that drive the design.