Author Archives: Lee Pelletier

Why you need carpet protectors for rolling chairs.

Do I need one of those hard plastic chair mats under my rolling chair?  Yes.  Yes.  Yes.


You are looking at the back of this carpet.  The carpet has delaminated in the corner.  Delamination is a fancy word that means the primary and secondary backing have separated.  This piece was cut out from an area where a client had a rolling chair on the carpet without a carpet protector.  The repeated rolling and stretching of the carpet fabric has compromised the adhesive used to bind the primary and secondary backing of this carpet.

Once a carpet has delaminated, you will get wrinkles in the carpet that are impossible to get out.  This is NOT a manufacturing defect.

To protect yourself, you will want one of these:


These plastic mats are inexpensive, and will prevent the delamination of the carpet caused by the repeated rolling action of the chair.

It’s not just rolling chairs that can cause this.  Rolling carts and wheelchairs can also cause delamination of the carpet and ugly, permanent wrinkles.  If you have these situations in your home or business, it is essential that you tell us so we can suggest appropriate flooring for your situation.

The Electric Straightedge

The ultimate in productivity and precision: The electric straightedge.  Just plug it in.  Wait ten minutes for it to warm up, and your cuts will be nice . . . and . . . straight.

Presented to Don Corley as a gag gift at our Christmas party.  We just had to share it.


Carpet Quality – A True Story

I had a client come in one day and she told me she didn’t want to spend any more than the bare minimum on carpet because carpet lasts only a year or two for her.

Stop. Hold right there. Did carpet last only a year (or two) for your parents? No. How long did carpet last for your parents? Yeah, much longer.

Getting the bottom of the barrel (but for a cheap price) is symptomatic ofour culture today. When you get the cheapest carpet possible, not only does it not wear well, it doesn’t look good from day one! By the third month, you are really hating it.

Continue that thinking with every part of your house and the end result is disaster. Instead of real wood vanities in the bathroom, you have fiberboard with a sticker on it that looks like wood. Just like cheap carpet, those vanities don’t look good either. And after a very short time, they are looking shabby. Do that with your whole house and your whole house looks shabby. It begins to look like Al Bundy’s Home from the TV show Married With Children.

If you want a quality home; if you want a home you can be proud of, start with quality flooring. Your floor is the area that gets the most use. There is nothing else in your home that you walk on! You don’t walk on your walls. You don’t walk on your ceilings. But you walk on your floor. So you need something good (really good, actually) to withstand that kind of use.

With a quality carpet, our client doesn’t need to replace it every year or two. Her home looks better. And she’ll save money. When you replace carpet every year, you are paying for labor to install that carpet 10 times in 10 years. You can put that money into a quality carpet instead, and turn a shabby home into an awesome one.

Are Laminate Floors Obsolete?

What is a laminate floor?

A laminate floor is a wood based product that has a digital picture on top.  A clear wear-layer is placed over the digital picture for performance.

Laminate floors come in a variety of qualities from very poor performance to excellent performance.

We have an old laminate floor in our office that looks like rainbow slate, but without the many issues that real slate has.  Real slate can have high and low spots (which can be tripping hazards).  Real slate can “shear”, which means layers of stone can come off.  The laminate floor does not have these issues.  The laminate floor we selected for our office is of excellent quality, and has performed well.

Our office floor costs about five times what cheap laminate costs. The difference in quality is not readily apparent to mere visual inspection.  So many people have purchased the laminate floor that was five times cheaper thinking “it’s the same thing.  This is a much better deal”.

The problem comes in performance.  The quality laminate was made with wood fiber strands compressed under very high pressure with a plastic binder.  This laminate is durable, resists water, excessive expansion and contraction, and looks great years later.

The cheap laminates (mostly Chinese imports – there we go again), are not wood fiber, but saw dust.  Saw dust and glue.  Visual inspection does not make this difference apparent.  But it is obvious a short time after the laminate is installed.  The core is weak, and all the edges get scuffed and torn. You soon see the core.  If someone leaves a damp towel on the floor, the floor bubbles.  If someone leaves a glass of water on the floor, it leaves a permanent ring.

So much of this cheap laminate has been sold, it has effectively ruined the market.  So many people have been disillusioned by the poor performance of cheap laminate floors, they never want to go back to it.  But our office is living proof that laminate floors can be extremely durable.  Nevertheless, once bitten, twice shy.

Laminate Floors are Obsolete Anyway

If you find the right look for you, and it is in a quality laminate, then by all means get it.

However, I need to tell you about today’s vinyl floors.  These are not your mother’s vinyl floors.  Vinyl floors look so real, you would be hard pressed to know the difference between vinyl and “the real thing” if you are standing up looking at the floor.  You have seen many of these extremely durable floors in businesses, and been fooled thinking you are looking at real wood, real tile, or real stone.

Advantages of vinyl floors:

  • No click/clack sound like laminate.
  • More resistant to water and moisture.
  • Easier to clean.
  • Easier to install.
  • Less expensive to install.
  • Less mess to install (no sawdust).
  • And definitely more choices in colors and styles.

Examine the following pictures.  See if you can determine which ones are laminate, and which ones are vinyl, and which ones are “real”.  Good luck . . .

photo photo 2 photo 3 photo 4 photo 5 photo 6

Excite Your Life With Color!

When television was first introduced, all we had were black and white pictures.  When color television was introduced, everyone wanted color.  Why?  Color is exciting and interesting.  We do not see people purchasing (or even requesting) large flat screen televisions in black and white.  You can’t get a black and white television.  No one wants it.

I’ve seen a trend in decorating towards monochromatic color schemes.  Beige on beige.  Gray on gray.  Excuse me while a scream: Boring!

We have a rainbow of colors for a reason.  Use them.  And try to think beyond primary colors.  There is so much more than “blue”.  There is navy blue, royal blue, sapphire, cobalt blue, denim, azure, periwinkle, baby blue, cerulean, cornflower blue, Wedgwood blue, and ultramarine.  Given a few moments, I’m sure you can quickly add another dozen blues.

How about red?  There’s not just red.  There’s fire engine red, crimson, cranberry, cherry, cardinal, brick, raspberry, auburn.  Oh, this is fun!  Come up with some more.

Green? How about mint?  Hunter green?  Chartreuse, apple green, olive, sage, teal, forest, lime, or pistachio.

These colors are so much more exciting than beige on beige.  Color adds a mood . . . an emotion . . . to a room.  Beige is flat and emotionless.  Do we want to add sense of serenity to a room?  Which of the colors I’ve mentioned so far could do this?  How about pistachio?

Want to add some drama to a room?  How about a slash of cardinal red?

By using color to add an emotion to a room, our home (or work) becomes a refuge.  Want to change how you feel?  Just go to another room!