Great Glazing: King of the Throne
In the show's first-ever bathroom makeover, the DIY Network's "Man Caves" recently featured a shower enclosure using Trattini glass from Bendheim's Architect Series I collection. In the episode, the hosts—licensed contractor Jason Cameron and former NFL star Tony "The Goose" Siragusa—turn an outdated bathroom into a man cave with state-of-the-art design and entertainment features, as well as a luxurious, edge-lit Bendheim glass enclosure.
The show's design team worked closely with Steven Jayson, vice president of Bendheim, to select Trattini, one of four patterned etched glasses conceived by Robert A.M. Stern. The surface of Trattini's ultra-clear low-iron glass is acid etched in Italy to produce a syncopated grid of vertical lines punctuated by subtle horizontal bands. The pattern, etched on both sides of the glass, lends a strong sense of dimensionality and movement, intensifying the dynamic LED lighting. Colorful ribbons of ceiling lights illuminate the ½-inch-thick glass panels.
Bendheim supplied the glass as a tempered product for the shower, as well as safety-laminated to a gray, etched privacy glass for the toilet area.
Show hosts Cameron and Siragusa performed the installation. "This acid-etched glass has a cool pattern but it also gives light a direction to flow," Cameron says, in the episode. "Installing [the glass] takes as much precision as muscle."
As seen around the 10-minute mark in the episode (see video at the end of this article), the install proved challenging. Says shower enclosure expert Tom Whitaker, owner of Mr. ShowerDoor: "It boils down to this: Someone didn't measure right; someone didn't order right; or the fabricator didn't make it [the glass] right. I'm figuring it is the first: wrong measuring. Everyone in the glass industry knows that measuring is 99 percent of the job. How often do fabricators screw up? Not that often.
"I wanted to see the thing blow up—as long as no one got hurt. Now that would have been an exciting show!
"It was a very difficult set. All you have to do is slightly ding one corner and the glass breaks. Of the handful of injuries I've had among my installers, they were due to such tight installations. And ½-inch tempered glass can still really hurt."