On the wire… cable railing!

Cable railing began as a solution for exterior deck and stair systems in situations where an uninterrupted view of the landscape was important.   Rather than looking between balusters to see the lake, forest or the backyard, the cables all but disappear. Today we see this system being adapted for interior stair systems.  The overall look […]

5 things I love about this space!

In a previous blog we talked about the elements and principles of good design.  This morning, while flipping through photos we’ve taken of finished projects, I stopped on this image.  It’s a beautiful space and a gorgeous photo. Like all good design, if we spend just a few minutes thinking about those basic elements and […]

It’s not winter yet! Get outside…

Once considered an impossibility in our buggy, Midwestern climate, outdoor spaces are getting a second round of consideration.  Why subject yourself to one more dreaded mosquito when the sofa lies inside waiting to be visited? There are birds! A good breeze (sometimes)!  A bonfire waiting to happen!  And at dusk…stars!  Add an ice cold beverage […]

This just in: It’s time for a new front door!

When your home improvement budget has a limit, deciding where to invest your dollars can be challenging.  A new bathroom?  A kitchen upgrade?  A finished basement?  Lucky for you, a recent research project has made your home improvement budgeting quandry a little easier. Each year, the National Association of Realtors and Remodeling magazine join forces […]

Columns 101: Doric, Ionic, Corinthian or… tapered?

Even a ten minute run-through of architectural history would include a study of the ancient column orders (or styles).  What’s the big deal about columns, you ask?  They are one of the few, enduring architectural elements utilized in every historical period across the globe since they were established in ancient Greece! There is, quite literally, […]

Hardware; the first and the finishing touch!

If you had to guess, what hardware finish would you guess is the most popular? Satin nickel? Brass? While satin and aged brass finishes are making a slow but steady comeback, our three, most-popular-ordered-every-day-of-the-week finishes are:  oil rubbed bronze, satin nickel and satin brass; in that order.  And you thought I was kidding about brass! […]

Color of the Year – a follow-up!

Last week’s blog included a drum-roll presentation of our #1 most requested color; Custom!  Despite sticking to the facts, many of you didn’t like the answer.  “Custom isn’t a color!” To satisfy our readers, we tabulated the numbers again but this time limited them to the paint and stain categories we offer within our color […]

Did you see us on TV?

We had the great pleasure of welcoming Dean Johnson from the PBS television program, “Hometime,” to our plant last month. It was fun to introduce he and Miriam to our Bayer Built family and walk them through both our prefinish and production facilities. Dean started Hometime in the early 80’s when Bayer Built was just […]

Lighten UP!

In the Midwest, we are nuts about daylight; literally.  Without it we establish something un-affectionately referred to as “cabin fever.”  Talking to ourselves, becoming short with each other, sleeping for 14 hours because it’s dark at 5pm…these are the maladies of winter; some would say, “a gentle form of torture.”  In just a few weeks, […]

Remember that time we were at Grandma’s?

The holidays are approaching and throughout the United States, uncles will be cracking corny jokes and mothers will be crowding the kitchen.  Families will gather, friends will congregate and inevitably, memories will be recounted over a glass of wine or at the dinner table.  We have a fancy word for this sentimentality for the past; […]

New front door? It’s not too late… yet!

If your Fall To Do List, included replacing the front door, it’s not too late… yet!  Mine will be replaced in the upcoming weeks and I’m looking forward to an updated and fully-functioning front door.  One that doesn’t drag on our tile floor and will keep us cozy, and heat efficient, all winter long. To […]

Tips from a designer: Space Planning

It seems we are often worried about not having enough.  Not enough time and not enough money and never enough space, “could you give me another closet?”  Architect and author Sarah Susanka calls it, “the fear of too smallness.”  Prior to the recession this concept was evident everywhere.  “Why add 10’ when we could add […]

To paint oak or NOT to paint oak… that is the question answered today.

Painted cabinets and millwork is not a new trend.  It gained popularity during the recession because of its very attractive price point.  Plus, there are few things more enjoyable than a clean, bright, spanking-new kitchen in the whitest of whites!  And while trends do come and go, paint is sticking around…at least a little while […]

Blue skies and clean air!

How do we keep that sky both blue and clean?  What is environmental stewardship and why do we care?  Just about everything we do as humans contributes something positive or negative to our environment.  Earth is habitable because of two cycles within our ecosystem; the carbon and hydro cycles.  Within this process the earth recycles […]

Manual? What manual, watch my video!

You’ve likely observed that the best way to teach any person born after let’s say…1980, is to set them in front of an instructional video.  Forget about 35-page instruction manuals; watch from your smart phone or your laptop or your iPad and you won’t have to try to figure out what that universal stick person […]

Stair System Options

There are several stair part terms that make me smile. Not because I love them, but because I can imagine a homeowner’s expression when faced with the challenge of selecting a stair system. Newels, volutes, gooseneck fittings, over the post…what the what? Where to start? These industry terms are second nature to seasoned installers and most builders, but to a homeowner stair parts can be very intimidating.

What is a Color Trend?

Regardless of the industry we find ourselves working within at some point every day you are exposed to color trends. Found on billboards, next year’s car model or at your local nail salon these palettes are heavily influencing your thought process. They encourage you to feel, buy or connect with someone or something. And those color combinations change every year!

Not enough time in the day…

We talk a lot about infusing our homes with character, encouraging everyone to avoid “cookie cutter” and builder grade and finding new life in old spaces or things. Pinterest, while one of the best web sites ever, can overwhelm even the most organized of people. After you’ve pinned your ideas there is not enough time in the day to complete them all. A friend once said to me, “I get depressed when I go home, because my house doesn’t look anything like my Pinterest house.” Projects around the house, whether inspired by a home magazine or your imagination can be overwhelming.

Local Lumber Showrooms

When shopping for your home we know how important it is to touch and feel the product that you are contemplating buying. We work hard with our dealers to keep their showrooms and displays current with a wide variety of different styles, species, colors, textures and more – so you don’t have imagine what it’ll look like you can actually see it up close.

Ultra Process Stains

Bayer Built Woodworks' Pre-Finish facility is excited to announce the release of our Ultra Process Stain. Our Ultra Process was developed for difficult to finish wood species such as Poplar, Alder and Pine. The Ultra Process utilizes water based stains with water based UV Seal and Top coats for a rich, consistent finish with the most durable, scratch resistant top coat on the market.

Green It Is

Even if you don’t buy in to “green practices” or sustainability, the concept of green should just be about common sense. Shouldn’t we want to use less natural resources? Don’t we want to have cars that are more efficient? If I am able shouldn’t I use my bike to go three blocks to a farmers market to buy jam


Do you ever notice the occasional, “slow-down and drive-by,” in your neighborhood? Whether it’s a visitor looking for house numbers or a leisurely onlooker, deep down we are all voyeurs. It’s unavoidable. Look at the quantity of home shows and tours from spring through fall if you don’t believe me. We absolutely love to know what the insides of each other’s homes look like.

Outdoor Spaces: Upgrade Your Deck

One of the best trends in home design is the development of the outdoor living space. If your dining room is too small for your extended family or you don’t have a good reading nook in the house, what better way to add value to your home than to create these spaces in your yard. Pulling these spaces together often requires a good deal of planning, a lot of muscle and vision. The big payoff is entertaining and relaxing in your own backyard oasis.

Exterior Columns

Exterior details - columns, mouldings, deck rails, rooflines, eaves, porches - should all include characteristics that mirror the foundational architectural details on your home. From Craftsman to Traditional styles, exterior columns provide architectural character and style to any home. At a glance, many exterior columns may seem similar. However, there are big differences in the design, size, design, and construction of most exterior columns.

Spruce up Your Exterior

As we said last week, it is time to dig out your work gloves and get a start on your outdoor projects. Have you thought about what projects you would like to tackle this summer? What could you do to freshen up the exterior of your home? Let’s look at a few different aspects of your home’s exterior that can had curb appeal and value with a little sprucing up.

Traditional vs. Contemporary Mouldings (Part 1)

Last week we talked about the various parts and pieces called mouldings. This week we’re going to look more closely at the profile or cut of each of those pieces to determine what style home they’d look best within. To illustrate the detail we’re going to compare two drastically different rooms and the mouldings that have been used to provide such different effects.

Interior Doors 101

The style and type of interior door you select for your opening can set the tone for the space. It is important to consider the construction style of doors as well as the materials they are made out of in order to make informed decisions on which doors will be right for your home. This week we want to cover some of the basic construction styles in order to help you consider your options for interior doors.

Interior Doors – More Than Just Room Dividers

Interior doors do more than just separate rooms and provide privacy; they help to define the style and character of your home, while providing warmth, beauty, and function. From traditional and Craftsman panel options to rustic louvers, elegant French doors to modern flush there are endless options available to fit your needs. The key is in choosing a door that will meet your decorating flair, add value, and provide satisfaction for years to come.

Behind Closed Doors

At the end of any organizing job, the last step is to close it up. You might close the lid, or the drawer or a pair of solid, wood doors. And with that final step your eyes no longer see clutter. Better yet, your brain doesn’t think mess. Because behind those doors is an organized haven. You can relax and move on to more enjoyable tasks. Your room has a fresh, new feel to it and you might feel compelled to repeat the process in another space.

Condensation Problems

Coming into this time of year, one of the most frequent issues we all run into is condensation on our windows and/or door lites. Condensation occurs when warm moist air comes in contact with a cooler surface. Not only is this unsettling to a homeowner about the product they purchased, there are also the issues of the mold and mildew that unwanted moisture creates. Along with the obvious health issues associated with mold and mildew, condensation can also lead to rotting wood and other damage if left unchecked.

Endless Possibilities

Your options don’t stop with our stock product lines, in fact truly personalized décor often comes from special orders…with this the possibilities for your millwork package are nearly endless. From exotic wood species, custom panel designs and unique glass styles, special orders provide you with limitless possibilities. Here id just a small glimpse of special order interior door options available from some of our vendors.

Before and After

The “grand reveal” is a pivotal part of every successful make-over television show. There are emotions, the quick views of before and after photos, and the glory of a completed project. The reality of any project is often more difficult. The behind the scene footage is far less glamorous.

Proper Wood Door Maintenance

With proper care and maintenance your wood entry door can provide last beauty and protection for years to come. But like any home product proper care and maintenance are vital to its durability and performance. Periodic maintenance will keep your door looking great and provide proper protection against the elements.

Stylish & Reliable – Z-Series Walnut Sills

You take careful care and consideration to choose woods and finish colors that reflect the architectural style and character of your home, but it is also important to consider some of the components of your doors and millwork package that can also affect those selections. As such Bayer Built has been busy updating our selection of hardware components to bring you a wider selection of options in order to make your entry system the perfect match for you.

Acclimated Storm Doors: Installation Made Easy

As a complement to our Acclimated Entry Systems line, Bayer Built Woodworks now offers Acclimated Storm Doors. Just like our Acclimated Entry Systems, Acclimated Storm Doors offer superior components that provide superior performance and value without taking away from the doors’ beauty and character. And since all Acclimated Storm Doors come pre-hung and ready to install, with our new installation video to assist you updating or adding a storm door has never been easier.

Choosing Your Interior Doors

When selecting interior doors for your home, style is obviously important - but it is not the only factor in choosing the right door. Size, construction, and material are also important to consider. You'll want to carefully consider the intended application and use of the door so you can better assess what type of door will be right for you. Let's look at some of your options:

6 Reasons to Pre-Finish

A quality finish is the perfect final touch for your millwork package. Finishes help to enhance the style and character of your doors, moulding, stair parts and more. There are numerous benefits to having your products pre-finished before delivery - and the beautiful, furniture grade quality is just one of them.

Storm Doors and Architectural Style

Your front entry unit provides character and sets the style for the inside of your home. If you are considering a storm door, don’t forget to carry this over. After you’ve considered sun exposure and proper ventilation needed for your application, think about the style for system that you want. Storm doors should help to accentuate your front entry unit, not detract from its character.

Advantages of Aluminum Railing

The type of material you choose for your deck will determine how much longevity and maintenance is required. Aluminum railing offers a number of advantages to vinyl, wood, or steel deck railing. The simplicity and durability of an aluminum alloy deck system means lasting performance and value for your home.

Decking Basics

If you are planning on building or remodeling your deck it is important to know the logistics, even if you are going to hire a professional. Arm yourself with information regarding materials, construction, and design so that you are sure to end up with the deck that fits your needs.

Entry Door Care and Maintenance

You’ve put great effort and time into choosing the perfect entry door for your home. But, like most all aspects of your home, it will require some simple, periodic maintenance to keep it looking great and provide proper protection against the elements. Here are 4 things you should do now to make sure your entry system lasts for years to come.

Who is Bayer Built Woodworks?

Here at Bayer Built Woodworks, we don’t like to think of the company as an it but rather a who. Bayer Built as a whole has a personality, and we hope that is reflected through our products, at events, and within our lumber dealers’ showrooms. For those who may not be as familiar with Bayer Built Woodworks, let us tell you who we are.