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The dos and don’ts of caring for your wood cabinets

Everyday use can take a toll on your wood cabinets—no matter what room they happen to be in. The good news is that all it takes is a little TLC to maintain their beauty and integrity over time. Here are some quick dos and don’ts to keep them looking like new:


DO tackle spills quickly. Spills and stains will happen, and when they do, it is important to wipe them away as quickly as possible to avoid lasting damage.


DO use the right cloth. To preserve the beauty of your wood cabinets, gently wipe away spills with a soft, damp (not wet) cloth followed by a dry, lint-free cloth.


DO treat tough stains with TLC. Sometimes stains can be stubborn. Don’t panic! Gently rub the area with a soft, damp cloth and a solution of mild detergent (liquid soap) and warm water. Afterward, dry thoroughly with a lint-free cloth.


DO keep surfaces clean and dry. A splatter of sauce in the kitchen or a wet towel left hanging in the bathroom can easily damage your wood surfaces. Be careful to keep them as clean and dry as possible.


DO treat stains, nicks and scratches quickly. If the surface of your wood cabinet has been compromised, lightly scuff the area with fine sandpaper before applying a thin coat of touch-up lacquer to restore the protective top coating. If any of the color has been removed, a touch-up stain should be applied before the top coating.


DON’T use abrasive cleaners or scouring pads. These can dull or scratch the finish of your wood cabinets.



DON’T use paste waxes, household polishes or solvent-based cleaners. These products will leave a residue, which can build up over time and alter the original luster and sheen of the wood finish.


DON’T use harsh chemicals. Never allow cabinet surfaces to be in prolonged contact with strong acids or alkalis, as these can do lasting damage to the wood.

DON’T let water sit. Wood cabinets are found most often in kitchens and bathrooms—places where there’s no shortage of water. The longer it soaks in, the more damage it can do, so remember to wipe up spills and splashes immediately.

Wood design elements add natural beauty and appeal to your home. Like any high-quality surface, your wood cabinets deserve to be treated with extra care to keep them looking beautiful for years to come. Now that you know all about caring for your wood cabinets call or stop by today and let our team of design professionals help you create your perfect living space. Whether you need help choosing the right type of wood or you’re ready to install, Primera is your one-stop shop for stunning wood cabinets.

Posted in Cabinets | Tagged , |

Farmhouse kitchens and dining: warm, welcoming, inviting for the holidays and every day


Cozy, Updated Farmhouse


Farmhouse kitchens and dining rooms are making their way into every décor. Whether it’s modern farmhouse, a more traditional approach, or a mix of styles old and new, farmhouse dining gathers everyone ‘round the table for a simple meal, or a holiday feast. Mix updated paint colors with traditional dining furniture for a cozy kitchen/dining environment.


Rustic and Traditional All the Way


Sometimes it makes perfect sense to take a design theme and run with it. Create the ultimate farmhouse dining/living room space by using every traditional element you can find: natural wood lighting, tables, and seating—plus traditional barn doors and a stacked stone fireplace—give your kitchen a down-home ranch feeling.


Come into the Kitchen


Modern meets traditional with wide-open gathering spaces meant to keep the cook company. As the heart of any home, providing a large island for guests to gather while the host prepares a meal encourages friends and family to stay in the kitchen. That way, the chef gets to enjoy the festivities while preparing the meal for all to partake.


Create an Urban Farmhouse Kitchen


Add a large farmhouse sink in the center of your kitchen island for an unexpected traditional element in the middle of a modern pewter countertop. This modern take on farmhouse style offers a more refined environment for cooking and gathering, but still has a welcoming feel.


Classic is Always in Style


A bright environment of open cabinetry and natural lighting is as functional as it is decorative. Just a natural wood table and rustic collection of chairs to complement the down-to-earth ambiance.

Posted in luxury kitchens | Tagged , |

Feeling fall: 10 seasonal ideas for the 2017 fall season

Something about fall sets us dreaming about cozy nooks and charismatic spaces filled with rich textures and bold accent pieces. This season is all about swapping the wispy décor of summer for surroundings with a little more substance. And boy, does it make for a striking statement. Here are 10 seasonal home design trends worth falling for.

1.    Everything Old Is New Again

Vintage accessories add character, especially if you’re on a budget. Scope out flea markets and yard sales for one-of-a-kind gems.


2.    Go with the Faux


Who says home design can’t be fashionable and frugal? Faux finishes are a great way to incorporate fall trends without breaking your home improvement budget.


3.    Opposites Attract Attention


And you thought blending was just for smoothies. Unleash your creativity and mix and match furniture, patterns, prints and textures throughout the room.


4.    Neutral: No Longer a Wallflower

The shades may be the same, but the personality is decidedly different. Neutral tones are showing their true colors with unexpected shape and texture.


5.    Brass from the Past


Brass is back and showing its mettle (see what we did there?) in surprising ways this season. Think furniture trim, light fixtures and unique accent pieces.


6.    Welcome Matte


Matte finish appliances and accessories are making a name for themselves this fall—especially in the kitchen, where stainless is steel is so last season.


7.    Museum-Worthy Walls


Turn a broad expanse of bare space into an art gallery wall by arranging framed photos, shadow boxes and wall hangings in a museum-style display.


8.    Touch and Go


This season it’s all about texture. From three-dimensional backsplashes and woven textiles to rich faux fur and chunky knit pillows, be sure to tie in all things tangible.


9.    Breathing Room

Nowadays we all need a soothing space to unplug and unwind. Create a cozy reading nook or bedroom hideaway with soft colors, comfy blankets and plenty of pillows.


10. Bring the Inside Out

Why should cooler temperatures keep us indoors? Create a fall-friendly outdoor retreat with plush patio furniture, soft lighting, warm rugs and a crackling fire pit.


Need More Inspiration? Talk to Us

The best thing about these fall design trends is there’s something for everyone, whether you’re up for a full-on renovation or simply looking to update your home with a few seasonal accents. Our team of design professionals is ready and waiting to answer any questions you may have. Contact us today to get started.



Posted in Design Trends | Tagged |

October design trends: home office edition


Shelving, Shelving, Everywhere


Home offices are becoming increasingly more of a necessity for anyone working from “la casa.” Maximize and organize that space by putting an office wherever it fits. Shelving above and cabinets below a built-in desk keep the workspace tidy.


Let There Be Light!


Creating an office around a window is a great way to bring natural light into your workspace – and maybe even a spectacular view. Built-in bookshelves keep office supplies neat and close by. A soft chaise offers a comfy place to read or take a break.


Natural Wood


To create a cozier ambiance and add personality to your home office, use natural wood on the floor and exposed real or faux brick to accent the walls. The window seat cushion in red adds warmth while providing an inviting place to relax.


Under-the-Staircase Desk


When work comes home with you, a late night at your under-the-staircase desk may be just the occasional workspace you need. While everyone else is upstairs asleep, this hallway approach to an office is quiet and close to the kitchen for wee-hour caffeine cravings.


Clipboards Are the New Bulletin Boards


Ideas become inspirations when you display them visually above your desk. Clear clipboards hung neatly in rows against a dark wall color make your ideas stand out with a more organized and chic appearance than traditional bulletin boards.

Posted in Design Trends | Tagged , , |

Ethanol fireplaces: the simple, no-fuss option

Ethanol Fireplace

Adding a fireplace to a room creates a new focal point that exudes comfort and warmth. But the hurdle of installation is often thought to be prohibitive. Not so with an ethanol fireplace! This type of fireplace is a relatively simple construction that requires no chimney and can be installed by simply placing it in the desired location. In fact, the simplicity doesn’t end there; once installed, an ethanol fireplace is easy to operate and maintenance is a breeze.

How does it work?

An ethanol fireplace generates heat and flames through burning ethanol - an eco-friendly fuel derived from corn. Simply pour ethanol fuel into the burner then ignite it with a long lighter or flick the switch. Ethanol produces no soot or ashes when it burns, hence no need for a flue or chimney. And there is little need for ventilation as the flames are clean.

How do I clean and maintain my fireplace?

Cleaning an ethanol fireplace is simple. No need to sweep up piles of ashes or scrub thick layers of soot. As long as you follow these basic rules, you’ll be able to maintain its appearance and functionality for many years.

1.     Wipe away soot

When your fireplace is cool, use a damp soft, lint-free cloth to wipe the back of the fireplace. This should remove any soot that has gathered. Use distilled water to ensure you leave no marks or try a mild glass cleaner. Depending on how often you use your fireplace, you may need to do this once a week or once a month.

2. Clean the burner

Take the burner out of the body of the fireplace, drain the fuel and clean the burner with a soft cloth, warm water and mild soap. If you have a sponge-style burner insert, use a dry cloth to wipe away the dust.

 3. Polish to a shine

Use stainless steel polish on your burner for extra shine. Ensure you scrub with the grain and use a basic soft sponge. Once fully cleaned and dry, place the burner back into the fireplace and refill with fuel.

Extra top tips:

·         Never submerse your burner under water.

·         Never use hard abrasives to clean the fireplace.

·         Mop up fuel spills as soon as they happen to prevent discoloration of the steel.

The simple no-fuss option

If you’re looking for an easy way to add a warming glow to a room, then an ethanol fireplace may well be the answer. Ultra simple to install and maintain, it can provide a flickering natural beauty that can be enjoyed by you and your family for years.

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged |

Everything you need to know about resilient flooring

If you think “resilient” is just our tricky way of saying vinyl, think again. Although vinyl does belong in the resilient family, it has many impressive cousins, including:

  • Linoleum

  • Cork

  • Rubber

  • Poly Resin

Simply put, resilient flooring is neither hard nor soft, has some “give” and usually stands up well to spills, heavy traffic and typical household abuse.

Unfortunately, somewhere along the line, vinyl and linoleum got a bad rap, conjuring up images of grandma’s 70s decor or perhaps just the idea that they were somehow “cheaper looking” than other flooring choices.

So, we’re here to tell you that resilients have come a long way. Not only are they more durable and low-maintenance than ever before, but they are as stylish and eye-catching as stone tile, wood, laminate, etc.

But in case you’re still skeptical, we’ve rounded up some winning examples. Let’s start with good old vinyl (as you’ve never seen it before).

Here we’ve got Stonehenge Mosaic, Castle Stone and Canyon Stone – probably all looks you don’t remember ever seeing gracing grandma’s kitchen.

And linoleum? We’ll let you judge for yourself . . .

Or how about this:

Gorgeous, easy to clean, hard to damage – what’s not to love? Once caveat – linoleum requires just little more care than vinyl and is sensitive to cleaners that are high in pH. But, linoleum comes in a wider variety of colors and patterns than vinyl; it just depends on what’s a better fit for your house.

Let’s check in on cork, shall we?

Works beautifully in the kitchen, or . . .

Even in the bedroom. The first thing people notice when they step on a cork floor is how soft it is, making it the perfect flooring for those who enjoy walking around barefoot. It’s also a natural insulator, not only for heat and cooling, but for noise as well.

Due to its softness, cork can be damaged easily by scratches and dents, but it can also be repaired easily, much like a wood floor, since trouble spots can be sanded down and refinished.

However, cork is one of the pricier choices, is prone to stains and can be slippery when wet, so maybe not the best choice for the powder room.

Now, onto a flooring substance that’s been gaining in popularity: Rubber

Your rubber floor can either look like rubber, or . . .

Really anything you want. Like most resilients, rubber is durable, somewhat soft, easy to clean and, like cork, a great noise insulator.

Last, but not least, we’ll cover poly resin, which looks great in pristine, modern spaces.

Poly Resin, or epoxy, floors are a designer’s dream, since they can be virtually any color; are able to look shiny, matte, cloudy, reflective, opaque, etc.

Although they are susceptible to normal wear and tear, they don’t require special cleaning products and are considered the most hygienic of all floors due to its non-porous surface.

If you have questions about resilient flooring or would like to see some samples, call or stop into Primera anytime!

Posted in Flooring | Tagged |

Design trends: brightening up dark walls, glass backsplashes, and the wild world of wallpaper


Lighten Up

The Problem? Dark walls.

The Solution: Combine multiple light sources, add bright color accents, and resist over-furnishing. Voila! Less cave-y, more cozy.


Patterned Wallpaper


No need to buy elaborate furniture or replace lighting fixtures. Those small, simple sitting rooms can become bold and exciting with a little patterned wallpaper.


Glass Backsplashes

For a touch of glam, some extra light, or a feeling of extra space in the kitchen, consider a glass backsplash behind the range.


Embrace the Mismatched

Create a free flow feeling in your home with mismatched picture frames and staggered placement.


Taking Little Risks

Thinking about splurging on wallpaper, but scared to take the leap? The bathroom is the perfect place to make your wallpaper dreams come true. Less space to cover means it’s safer to take a bold risk—and less money to spend!

Posted in Design Trends | Tagged , , |

Design trends: pot fillers, swinging daybeds, and the latest and greatest in paint color

Pot Fillers


There’s something cumbersome about filling a bulky pot with water in the kitchen sink. But now you don’t have to! Pot fillers are brilliant little faucets installed right above your stovetop for easy fill-ups—and they make pasta night extra convenient.


All-Natural Kitchens


White kitchens are wonderful—but warm wood and soothing stone makes for a naturally rustic kitchen.


Create a Tropical Escape in Your Own Bathroom!


Lounge under the palm trees while you soak in the warm water—of your bathtub, that is. Surround your tub with green plants and tropical-themed wallpaper for a relaxing escape every day.


Swinging Daybeds


Swings and summertime…is there anything better? Instead of the run-of-the-mill porch swing, swinging daybeds offer ultimate summer relaxation. Warning: these comfy swings may result in long naps in the sun.


The Newest Color Trend 


Buttermilk is the flavor of the week in the world of colors. This hue is more inviting than white but softer than a pastel yellow. Perfect for the kitchen—or almost any other room in the home when paired with wooden trims and accents.

Posted in Arizona, California, Colorado, Design Trends | Tagged |

Popular interior improvements for home sellers

Although it’s difficult to know which home improvements help a house sell faster, and for top-dollar, there are some that offer a better return than others. If you’re thinking of selling in the near future, it would be wise to evaluate any structural or decor changes with a view to future value as well as present appeal.

Some renovations are more appropriate than others. For example, look to the floor first. Welcome guests as they step into your home with natural stone or a dramatic tile floor that’s as beautiful as it is easy care. It’s a “value added” feature that will impress prospective buyers!


Look to the Kitchen

Buyers want kitchens that are bright and happy spaces, filled with great appliances, attractive countertops, and cabinets with abundant storage. You may replace your cabinets, or you may brighten and refinish old wood, repaint cabinet doors and add new hardware. If the style is outdated but the boxes are in good shape, consider replacing the doors, something a professional contractor can easily do.

A lot of sellers opt to replace outdated laminate countertops with a solid surface, either natural stone or a modern composite, for a trendy look. Add a shiny new sink with a modern stainless faucet/sprayer combination to immediately vault your kitchen into the 21st Century of style. Display pots of herbs on the windowsill!

Repaint the walls, replace vinyl flooring with trendy new wood floors, natural stone or oversized ceramic tile. Modern engineered wood is perfectly suited for kitchen use and will look beautiful for years to come. However, your newly refurbished kitchen might be tempting enough to make you change your mind about moving!


Whole House Improvements

If you’ve lived in a home for a number of years, it is easy to overlook small faults. Try to walk through each room with new eyes, or ask a trusted friend to point our areas that need attention. They might suggest you repaint some walls or even entire rooms. They also might recommend you lighten up your window treatments, or replace older mini-blinds with more modern wide-slat style, or switch to adjustable interior shutters that allow light as well as privacy.

Replacing round brass doorknobs with more modern stainless or oil rubbed bronze levers and updating a dining room chandelier with a contemporary pendant will make a world of difference.

It’s all about adding style without spending too much and creating a backdrop to stimulate a buyer’s imagination. The best advice is to update without stamping your own personality on each room. Neutral backgrounds are adaptable, but don’t overdo the “plain and simple” approach. Study online decorating sites and visit local paint stores and design centers for ideas.

Freshening up your home’s decor may take some thought, but it is by no means an impossible task!


Ryan Tollefsen is the founder and team leader of Unity Home Group. Ryan specializes in negotiating offers, marketing, managing the team, setting goals and achieving them. 

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged |

Choosing the best granite thickness: two centimeters vs. three

Looking for a new, fresh countertop?

Picking the right material, color, and design gives your kitchen or bathroom an instant facelift. When it comes to choosing the right thickness for those granite countertops, however? Not quite as exciting!

It is often not a priority decision but choosing the right slab thickness is vital as it affects every aspect of the installation and long-term reliability of your new counters. Let us explain how to pick the perfect thickness for your granite countertops—and why it’s so important.


The Basics

Traditionally, granite countertops are available in two options: two centimeters and three centimeters-thick.

And while a centimeter difference may not seem like much, everything from the installation, short-term price, long-term value, and overall strength are impacted by this one decision.

Here’s what you need to know:



We’ve all done it: leaned against the kitchen counter while reading a recipe or propped our child on the edge to tie his shoe.

Kitchens are the busiest rooms in our home, and our counters should be up to the challenge.

But the truth is, a two-centimeter granite slab can’t handle as much pressure (eek!) as its thicker counterpart. This is especially true around narrow cuts such as in front of a sink. While three-centimeter counters are strong enough to support their own weight when being installed, two-centimeter slabs have to be installed on top of plywood decking to boost its strength and resistance. When scrutinized the plywood is in fact visible from underneath the top. Your guests are unlikely to notice it but you will. Just reaching underneath your two-centimeter laminated top you will be able to feel the plywood support as opposed to polished stone.

Meanwhile, three-centimeter countertops can withstand an overhang of up to a foot, which makes for an ideal, casual eating area.



The more material you use, the higher the cost, right? Well, with granite countertops, this isn’t entirely true.

Sure, three-centimeter slabs are technically more expensive than two-centimeter slabs…if you’re only paying for the material alone; however, the installation is simpler, the fabrication costs remain the same, and handling requires a less strenuous attention—as two-centimeter slabs are more delicate.

So, what does this mean? At Primera, the cost of 3cm slabs are about the same as 2cm slabs.


Long-Term Value

Three-centimeter granite countertops are, ultimately, more valuable in the long-term. The material is stronger and has a sleeker aesthetic, as the profile can be fabricated with more detail.

That’s not to say two-centimeter slabs can’t be fabricated; in fact, they often are. But this is only made possible with the process of lamination, another point off the two-centimeter slab’s value.

Here’s why:


Two-Centimeter Slabs and Lamination

Laminate treatments are used frequently on two-centimeter granite countertops. This process involves applying a thin strip of the same material under the entire border of the countertop (think of it like a small, upside-down fence).

Lamination essentially makes the countertops look thicker, but the seam between the strip and the counter is noticeable—and the countertop is no stronger because of it.


Here’s the Deal

At Primera, we think it’s a bit silly to charge more for three-centimeter granite countertops when the installation, handling, and final result is easier, more efficient, and truly gorgeous.

We’ve seen a pattern:

Two-centimeter slabs tend to be more popular. But the slab requires the edge to be laminated, a labor-intensive process—not to mention the seam is visible. The three-centimeter slab, however, requires no lamination and can be completed faster.

Overall, three-centimeter granite countertops simply offer a much cleaner, more contemporary look while proving to be stronger and offer better value as they cost about the same.

So, are you ready for your new granite countertop? Reach out and we’ll give you the look you’ll love and the strength you need, within your budget and on time.

Contact Primera today.

Posted in Countertops | Tagged , , , , , |