4 Easy and affordable bathroom design trends to rejuvenate your space

As homeowners, we know when it’s time for a bathroom remodel, but we often struggle with where to begin the process. Today’s bathrooms have evolved from merely functional spaces into relaxing retreats full of personal style accents, luxurious appointments, and creature comforts. Fortunately, you don’t have to “go big or go home” (aka overspend) to get results. Adding just a few simple enhancements can deliver significant visual impact and increase the overall value of your room. If you’re redesigning your bathroom, go into the process armed with a few current design trends that achieve everything on your must-have checklist and help you create a final look you’ll love.

Mirror, Mirror

If you’re looking for a simple, relatively inexpensive way to redefine the bath, start with your vanity mirrors. Still have that large, builder-grade mirror stretching over both of your vanity sinks? Change things up by installing two smaller statement mirrors over each washing station. Once you’ve determined the right size and shape for each piece, partner with a glass distributor to further personalize the look with beveled edges or beveled strips for a sleek and sophisticated finish.

Go Frameless

Ready to upgrade the shower from a curtain to glass? If you’re looking for something sleek and modern, consider a glass frameless shower. Clean, elegant, and with a touch of upscale hotel opulence, frameless showers instantly revamp the décor in your room. Make no mistake, a quality frameless shower offers so much more than just aesthetics. A well-designed model is also a structurally sound, sturdy, and safe option with no threat of metal corrosion.


See Through

Previous generations of glass showers often used moderately opaque, frosted panels and doors. However, transparent glass has steadily gained (and continues to gain) popularity – and with good reason. Today’s clear glass showers can have an aftermarket invisible coating applied at an extra cost to prevent hard watermarks and soap residue from building up on the panes. Plus, clear glass instantly adds visual interest, makes your bathroom feel more spacious, and shows off beautiful tile work.

Update Fixtures

Perhaps the easiest (and most affordable) way to update your bathroom? Swap out your fixtures. Shower handles, hinges, and even the knobs on your vanity cabinets and drawers can all start to seem a bit dated over time. Replace existing fixtures with a new color or finish to instantly freshen up both the look and function of your showers, doors and cabinets.


Looking for inspiring ways to update your bath? Glass Depots can help. Visit our showroom at 5100 Trademark Drive in Raleigh to connect with our design experts or check us out online at www.glassdepots.com.

12 Important design tips for custom glass shower enclosures

You’ve finally made the decision – it’s time to upgrade your out-of-date shower with a new custom glass enclosure! Be prepared to see your bathroom in a whole new light, with more open space and a modern look!

Before you get started, though, you will want to make yourself familiar with the aesthetic touches you want and the structural elements you’ll need to ensure maximum functionality and impact. After years of providing custom glass for frameless shower enclosures for customers in Raleigh and across the Triangle, we’ve seen several contractor mistakes and oversights that can upend your project. You don’t need to become an expert on the matter, but understanding the fundamentals can help ensure that the contractor you choose is building your new enclosure the right way.

Tip 1: Angles to Use

Plan for your shower to be built using 90°, 135°, or 180° angles. Most shower hardware is designed to accommodate these angles, so planning ahead can help guarantee the enclosure will function correctly and remain cost-effective.

Tip 2: Support For Shower Doors and Hardware

Make sure the wall where you plan to install your hinged door has the proper studding support behind it. Doubled 2x4s is best, but a single 2×4 will work. Additionally, provide wood studs or blocking where doors hinge or panels are anchored, especially if metal studs were using in the original construction of the wall.

Tip 3: Shower Curb

Do you want to install your shower enclosure on a curb, or would you rather have it flush with the floor? Eliminating the curb can be beneficial to planning a handicap-accessible shower enclosure, but the curb can help prevent water from leaking or pooling on the floor of your bathroom.

Tip 4: Slope of Curb

Typically, curbs are sloped at a 5-degree slope to enable the water to flow toward the drain. Without this slope – sometimes referred to as the “pitch” – the curb would have standing water on top or could leak water onto the bathroom floor.

Tip 5: Slope of Shower Seat

If you are considering a built-in shower seat, make sure that the seat slants toward the drain at a 5-degree slope. This allows water to flow off of the seat and into the drain.

Tip 6: Plumb Walls

In order to prevent gaps, uneven joints, and hinge “bind”, any wall that meets a door or glass panel must be precisely vertical (also called “plumb”). If the wall is more than ¼” out of plumb will be both prone to leak and be unsightly.

Tip 7: Minimum Width of Glass Panels

Each glass panel should be at least 4½” wide, which is the minimum width for tempering glass and supporting the hardware. The door must be at least 22” wide but no more than 36” wide.

Tip 8: Glass Tiles

When designing your shower enclosure, avoid any plans that involve mounting door hinges and glass clips onto the glass tiles. These situations often cause breakage, adding time and expense to your new enclosure.

Tip 9: Soffits

The eaves along the top of your shower are called “soffits”. In order to avoid an uneven look, your soffits must line up perfectly with the angles in the curb below.

Tip 10: Shower Head Position

Insider tip: If possible, make sure to position your showerhead toward tiled walls or fixed panels. This minimizes leakage. Whatever you do, never place your showerhead opposite another door or opening unless you have a low-flow showerhead or one that points straight down to the floor.

Tip 11: Raised Tiles and Overhangs

It is the goal of any professional installation to ensure that nothing interferes with the door’s movement and leave no gaps between the door and the wall. This situation can often arise with raised decorative tiles or overhanging tiles, but these can be modified to allow for proper door usage. You should note, however, this is sometimes done using filler, which may negatively impact the look of the finished product.

Tip 12: Curb Tops

Solid pieces of tile, marble, and granite are ideal for the curb top. Tiled curb tops increase the chance of a leak, and can lead to mildew or mold down the line. The shower door seal functions best on a solid, smooth surface.


At Glass Depots, we pride ourselves in offering the best custom glass showers in Raleigh. Contact the Glass Depots team today to learn more!

What to check when moving to a new home

Moving to a new home can be an exciting experience, but there are a lot of concerns that you’ll need to think about too. After all, you want the property you choose to not only look incredible but provide you with the comfort and security you need to enjoy day-to-day life with your family.

Checking that everything in your home is safe, secure, and not going to eat away at the money you have left in your bank account, is a great way to make sure that you’re getting a good deal. After all, everything from residential conservatory to your glass doors can have an impact on how valuable your property is. Here are a few things you should be careful to check in advance.

Make Sure the Glass is in Good Order

Glass can be an important component of a home’s structure. After all, your windows not only let light into your home and provide you with an excellent view, they also make your property into a more attractive and welcoming structure. Broken seals in your window panes could mean that your home becomes less energy efficient, giving you more to pay out each month. Even damage to your shower enclosures could mean leaks and flooding in your brand-new bathroom!

The good news is that if there are any issues you need to repair before you move into your new home, fixing your windows and doors doesn’t have to be as complicated as it seems. Issues with breakages can bring down the cost of your property purchase, and you can easily get a professional glasswork team on-hand to get your home secure again. Look for cracks, condensation, and fog for signs that windows are damaged, and check for signs of moisture in the bathroom.

Look for Signs you Need a Deep-Clean

When you’re trying to get the most out of your new home purchase, it’s important to view the property more than once so you can get into the nooks and crannies of the house and discover everything that needs to be done. For instance, if there are stains on the carpets or a strange smell that needs to be eliminated before you can move in, then you may need to invest in a service, or a lot of elbow grease to get your home in tip-top condition.

Knowing exactly how much you’re going to need to invest to get your property up to scratch in advance can help you to prepare your finances accordingly. After all, the last thing you want is an unexpected bill you can’t afford to pay.

Make Sure You Have Local Support Nearby

When you’re buying a home, you’ll quickly learn that location is often the key to a successful investment. As well as searching for a neighborhood you can feel comfortable in, it’s helpful to search for local businesses nearby that can help you to simplify the process of choosing a new home and settling into that property.

For instance, as well as a glass repair company, and a realtor you can trust, you’ll also need the help of a moving business who can shift your belongings over to your home as safely and securely as possible. We recommend our friends at Bellhops Moving in Raleigh, but whoever you choose, make sure that they’re familiar with the local area.

There are a lot of things to check on when you’re moving into a new home, but if you do your preparation and planning in advance, you shouldn’t have too much trouble making the most of your move.

This post was kindly written for us by our friends over at Bellhops Moving.

Choosing the right shower enclosure for your space

The shower is a focal point in virtually any bathroom. Don’t squander its design potential with a drab curtain. Install a glass shower enclosure to optimize visual appeal and accentuate the other features in the space.

Which Shower Enclosure Is Right For Your Bathroom?

Of course, deciding you want to upgrade to a glass shower enclosure is only the first step in the process. You also have to decide which glass system to install. There are countless styles, and layouts to consider as you navigate through the decision-making process. Knowing some of the most popular looks can ensure you pick a model with staying power.


Frameless glass shower systems are everywhere. A frameless product is sleek, sophisticated, and ultra-versatile, proving they are more than just a passing fad. Most frameless models offer custom layouts, making them an ideal solution for hard-to-fit shower spaces. Additionally, frameless models have limited fixtures and hardware to match, allowing them to effortlessly complement virtually any existing décor. Best of all, the glass on these products is a snap to clean if you opt for a finish that repels water and soap build up.


Framed enclosures offer an affordable, high style shower system solution. Semi-Frameless showers are sturdy, creating a good seal between the water in your shower and the rest of your bathroom. Choose a modern metallic finish for a stylish look in your space.


Love the look of glass but feel you’re a little tight on space? Go for a sliding glass door system in your shower. The sliding feature means you can enjoy the beauty of a glass enclosure in smaller spaces that won’t accommodate a swinging door.


Many homeowners assume that having a tub means being stuck with a shower curtain. Not true. Once again, customization is the key to a successful renovation. Work with a professional glass installation firm to discuss the exact dimensions for a design that offers a sleek look and fit.

Single Paned

Rather than a full enclosure, many homeowners are opting for a single glass panel that looks stylish and modern. Best of all, taking up less space in the shower with glass affords a little more elbow room for you.

Tile & Glass

When it comes to mixing tile and glass for a final shower look, if you can dream it, they can build it. Incorporating a frameless glass shower door with surrounding tile walls creates visual interest in the room and serves as a design starting point for the rest of the bathroom.


Still need help deciding? Check out our Shower Door Framing Styles Guide for more info!


Once you’ve chosen your enclosure, consult with a local glass installation professional to discuss various glass options that deliver both the look and privacy levels you want in your bathroom. Contact Glass Depots today for more information.

Your 10-step guide to installing a custom shower enclosure

When it comes to purchasing custom glass for your home, a number of measures should be taken to ensure that your project is of the highest caliber. A custom glass shower door or enclosure is meant to be a longstanding fixture in your home and, thus, installation should be approached with care and well-thought-out strategies — in other words, it should never be a rushed decision.

At Glass Depots, we have created a 10-Step guide for our customers to use as they work with us to install their new custom glass shower door or enclosure.

10 Steps for Custom Shower Enclosure Installation in Your Raleigh Home

  1. Come to the showroom at Glass Depots to discuss your project. Before you start any new tiling or bathroom renovations give us a call to discuss your project.
  2. Speak with our glass shower design consultants. We will guide you through your choices and discuss any alternatives that may work for your home.
  3. Hand pick your custom shower parts. Choose the design, style, glass, hardware and color that you feel best matches the vision for your new shower. We will provide you with an estimate based on your specific choices.
  4. Complete any other renovations to your bathroom. Any tiling, bathroom changes or renovations that need to be completed before installing your new shower should be done first.
  5. Call us to come measure. We will come out to measure your home for your new custom shower enclosure or door.
  6. Pay your deposit and place your order. We ask that our customers pay a deposit upon ordering their new custom shower door or enclosure. The balance of the payment will be paid upon completion.
  7. Wait 7-10 business days. During this time your custom glass will be tempered and the unit will be fabricated.
  8. Listen out for a call from Glass Depots. We will give you a call, when your glass is ready, to schedule the installation.
  9. Begin installation. Once you have scheduled a time we will come to your home and install your new shower door or enclosure. Once it is complete, you will check to make sure it meets your standards, pay the balance and wait 24-48 hours for the silicone to dry.
  10. Enjoy your brand new custom shower door or enclosure. Relax in the oasis of your new space, that’s what it’s for!
Are you looking to install a new custom shower door or enclosure in your Raleigh, Durham or Chapel Hill home? Look no further than Glass Depots to help you attain the bathroom of your dreams. Give us a call to learn more or stop by our showroom to see our work!

5 Ways to keep your glass shower clean

Showering every day. It’s part of our routine. Your shower is your own personal space where you can wash off the troubles of the day. While you’re getting clean, however, your shower is slowly getting dirty.

How do you keep your glass shower enclosure sparkling clean? Try these helpful tips:

Banish Hard Water Stains

Hard water stains appear as white, or cloudy, residue along the glass in your shower. They may look easy to fix, but untreated can actually etch and scratch your glass. How do you prevent hard water stains? After each shower, wipe the glass clean of any moisture with a cheap squeegee or other device. If you start to see hard water stains, or lime buildup, use a shower cleaning solution like Clorox. Spray the solution, follow the waiting time depending on the product and then wipe away.

Fight Mold Before It Happens

Mold and mildew give your shower a dingy look, they can also be damaging to your health. (According to the Environmental Protection Agency, breathing in mold can be directly related to respiratory illnesses!) Mold and mildew only grow where it’s damp, so the trick is to keep your bathroom and shower as dry as possible. Use the fan when you shower and leave it on 10-15 minutes after you are finished just to ensure the extra moisture evaporates out.

Keep Your Mat Clean

Make sure to wash your bath mat often. By cleaning it regularly, you get rid of the dirt and moisture that hides away in the crevices. Hidden wet areas can lead to rapid mold growth in the bottom of your shower.

Scrub Your Tiles

Slightly dirty tiles can make your whole glass shower enclosure feel more dingy. Once in a while, take an old toothbrush and run very hot water so that the steam will loosen dirt from in between the tiles. Scrub between them with a cleaner, or a mixture of ammonia, vinegar and baking soda, and watch as dirt slides right off.

Clean Out the Drain

Although it’s not something that is easily seen from the outside, it is vital in keeping water and mold from building up in the bottom of your shower. No one gets excited about cleaning the drain, but it’s something that needs to be done from time to time. All you need to do is put on some rubber gloves and pull the hair out with a hook, or device with “teeth” on the side that will grab clogging agents in your drain. After you’ve cleaned it out, you’ll notice your hard work will pay off by having water run smoothly down the drain.

Cleaning the shower isn’t always at the top of our to-do list, but it should be. It’s important to making sure your glass enclosure looks brand-sparkling-new all the time. Remember to wipe away moisture from the glass and walls after any shower, and use the rest of these tips to ensure that your shower stays beautiful and mold-free!

If you have questions about your custom glass shower doors and enclosures, give us a call or st0p by our showroom. We look forward to hearing from you!

What is the difference between tempered and laminated glass?

When safety is a primary concern, tempered glass is typically used. This type of glass is commonly used in doors and windows, but does have other applications. If it is broken, it shatters into smaller, less harmful fragments. It is manufactured by heating then rapidly cooling the glass, causing the outside surface to form a hard “skin”. This hardened exterior makes it seven times stronger than regularly manufactured glass.Laminated glass is used when both safety and security are in mind. It is made by bonding two pieces of glass together with a middle core of plastic called polyvinyl butyral. This middle layer prevents the glass from separating when shattered, reducing serious harm and lacerations. This type of glass is perhaps best known for its application in windshields in all modern automobiles. Laminated glass lacks the strong outer skin that tempered glass has, and as such is more prone to cracking when impacted.

How to clean, protect & maintain your glass table

Glass tabletops help to add an unparalleled touch of elegance to any room. With the right care and maintenance, you can easily extend the life of your table and keep your glass looking new for many years to come. Here are our best tips for caring and maintaining glass and mirror surfaces to maximize your investment.

What is the best cleaner for glass and mirrors?

Ultraglass TableThere are many great options for streak-free glass cleaning. The most budget-friendly option is simple: mix one part white vinegar with two parts water and apply directly to the glass, then wipe with a newspaper to prevent lint on the glass. If you prefer commercial options, look for light aerosol foam cleaners – these should leave your glass sparkling with a simple spray and wipe.

Is there anything I should avoid?

Abrasives should never be used on a mirror surface, as well as any cleaners containing ammonia or acid! These can destroy the silver backing and edges of your mirror. In addition, you will probably want to avoid using paper towels, as these can leave unsightly lint behind.

Why does my glass show streaks when I clean it?

For starters, consider the type of cleaner you’re using. Many cleaners leave residue which may leave streaks when it dries. A quality cleaner will leave nothing behind after evaporating. Secondly, make sure to use an absorbent towel. If it is not absorbing enough you’ll be merely moving the moisture around on the surface.

What other things can I do to eliminate streaks?

If your towels aren’t getting the job done, consider using newspaper! Crumpled newspaper does a great job of absorbing the cleaner and leaving a lint-free finish. In addition, avoid cleaning your windows in direct sunlight, as this can dry the surface too quickly and potentially cause streaking.

Should I be wiping my glass tables vertically or horizontally?

It has less to do with the direction of your cleaning motion and more about maintaining an even pressure as you swipe. Either will work perfectly fine.

How do I maintain the “new glass” glow?

If you take proper care of your glass, you can keep it in pristine condition for years to come. Take care to avoid placing objects with sharp corners or rough bases as these can scratch and dull the surface over time. For glass dining room table, make sure to use coasters and placemats whenever possible. Finally, clean your glass on a regular basis to eliminate dust and fingerprints to reduce a smudgy appearance.

Why do the edges of a mirror turn black?

The Science Behind Your Mirror

If your mirror is turning black around the edges, you’re observing a chemical reaction in your home. Mirrors add a classic touch to every room, but unfortunately, they are not immune to the wear and tear of time. Black edges detract from the beauty of your mirror, which is due to different chemicals reacting on the surface. Mirrors are made by applying a thin layer of silver nitrate onto the glass, which blocks light from passing through and allows the reflection to take place. Protective coatings are then added to the mirror to protect it from damage. When the protective coatings are compromised, the silver nitrate is revealed. This chemical reaction to the elements in your home is known as mirror rot or desilvering.

Most often, bathroom mirrors are the most affected by mirror rot. Contaminants in the air attack the silver backing of your bathroom mirror, which causes discoloration and flaking. Soapy water or incorrect cleaning liquids are prone to accumulate on the edges of the mirror and will erode the backing. The discoloration that occurs from this chemical reaction is what leads to the edges of mirrors turning black and can take away from the beauty of having mirrors in your home.

How to Avoid Black Edges on Your Mirror

At Glass Depots, we apply additional protection to mirrors that we supply and install to keep them beautiful and free of black edges. We know that mirrors are an investment in the design of your home, so we are committed to helping you maintain them. Glass Depots will work with you to find the best solution to the problem and will ensure your mirrors look beautiful for years to come.

Contact us today to schedule your in-home consultation!

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