How to Mix Oil Based Gel Stain Colors Using Layers

Pictured: General Finishes gel stain in java

Oil-based gel stains are great for achieving beautiful hand-rubbed finishes, and their thickness keeps them from dripping, running, or spilling. They might come in a bunch of beautiful colors, but what if you’re still feeling limited? All you have to do is choose any two colors you want, then layer them to create your own custom look! Here’s how to finish a piece of furniture by layering different colors of General Finishes gel stains.

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The Kitchen Work Triangle

kitchen work triangle(source)

The kitchen is one of the most frequently-used rooms in any home. Therefore, it's important that your kitchen is set up for maximum efficiency and ease of use. Having the right furniture, kitchen cabinets and accessories– and placing them in close proximity to each other- can change the entire workflow of your kitchen. This is commonly referred to as the “kitchen work triangle”.

The concept of the kitchen work triangle was established in the 1940s and is still used in many houses today. It focuses on the three main tasks performed in the kitchen (cooking, preparing and storage) and the appliances that help us get them done (the stove, sink and refrigerator). If these three items are in close proximity to one another, and form a triangle shape when connected with imaginary lines, it is easier to be more efficient in your kitchen.

There are a few others rules that the kitchen work triangle should have. These include each leg of the triangle being between 4 and 9 feet, no obstructions (including kitchen cabinets and islands) coming between a leg of the work triangle and that household foot traffic shouldn't interfere between the triangle. However, these don't need to be strictly enforced to have a successful kitchen working space.

Today's kitchens are fairly larger and more complex than those in the 1940s. Microwaves, coffee makers, dishwashers and other appliances all perform specific duties that take place in the kitchen. There are now spots in the kitchen for socializing, working on homework, watching TV and more. If you connected all of these new “areas”, you'd have more of a star shape than a triangle. Still, the main 3 functions listed earlier are crucial to a functioning kitchen, so the triangle concept still holds up to serve as a guideline. With all of your leftover space, you can focus more on decorations and extra appliances without everything being too crowded.

In larger kitchens, it's usually best to keep the work triangle to one section of the kitchen. From there on, you can use the rest of the space for seating or entertaining. This separates the kitchen into “work” and “play” sections, allowing everyone to make the most of the space.

If you're planning on remodeling your kitchen or starting from scratch, it is the

perfect time to try to incorporate the kitchen work triangle into your space. The extra planning and money you spend will save you time and energy in the long run. Placing your appliances too close together can make your kitchen feel cramped, while spacing them too far apart makes preparing food a hassle. Keeping the kitchen work triangle in mind when remodeling will make a large difference.

If you have a small kitchen, like a 1-wall kitchen in an apartment for example, the kitchen work triangle may not be feasible. In this case, it's best to do everything else you can to make your kitchen work for you. Keep important appliances and frequently-used accessories and utensils close to one another for easy reach and use. Make the most of your cabinets by maximizing their storage space with pull-outs or door racks.

The Finishing Touch for a Library

If the kitchen is traditionally the woman’s focal point of a perfect house, the library is the man’s. And it is not just lawyers who have a wall full of bookshelves from floor to ceiling.

Both a design element and a functional necessity, the rolling ladder can be simple wood in simple styles or it can be an antique brass or bronze highlighted masterpiece. Either way, it makes it easy, and safe, to access top shelves when a foot stool is either too short or too unsteady. The rolling library ladder can also add functionality to large closets, wine cellar, kitchens and pantries, or even to access lofts; anywhere you want to reach those out-of-the-way places. And remember that a man’s library can also have that hidden flat screen TV; it can still be a “man cave” only with a touch more class than the norm.

Remember, though, that a ladder is only as good as its base and its hardware; buy the proper mounting hardware and install it properly, or have it professionally done. And, along that same line of thought, remember that a ladder is never ornamental, or “just for show” … even if you know it is not really meant for climbing, will all the guests who visit your library?

When you think of that perfect finishing touch for the library or access to any high location, the rolling ladder is the perfect accessory. And remember that Custom Service Hardware is here to help!

Thanks, as always.

Ken, for CSHardware