Edge Treatments Feature Innovative Designs

by WOHe

Edge Treatments Feature Innovative Designs

By John Filippelli

ALBUQUERQUE, NM Aesthetically stunning, active and natural describe
the recent offerings in edge treatments that won top honors in
Avonite’s Sixth Annual Edge Treatment Contest. Featuring both
intricate and playful designs, the edge treatments range in theme
from a southwestern mosaic to a merry-go-round palette. 

In addition, many of the pieces were created using unique
fabricating techniques that allowed the fabricators to create
one-of-a-kind designs that incorporated a host of colors, textures
and interesting design elements.

First, second and third place winners were awarded cash prizes,
and seven more were given “Top Ten Placement” mentions. 

Stunning innovation

The first-prize-winning entry, created by Ron Peppler of Blume’s
Solid Surface Products in New Kensington, PA, which features a
merry-go-round theme, is an active piece that includes elements of
movement, not only in the color scheme, but in that the horses
within the design rotate. 

The merry-go-round was fabricated like a regular countertop,
according to Peppler, and was sandwiched with three half-inch
pieces. The horses were thermaformed and curved, and can be seen
going in the door of the design and then coming out again.

The flutes were cut with a router bit and the top piece was
sandwiched on after the cut, notes Peppler, whose designs claimed
three of the top four spots in this year’s 

Peppler notes that he used a Dremmel tool for the carving of the
horses, adding to the authenticity. “Ninety percent of our
fabricating tools are Porter-Cable,” Peppler states.

Peppler also chose to use dark hues of black and purple, giving
the edge treatment a majestic feel. While he admits that the piece
may not be the most functional, and may present some challenges in
terms of cleanability, he believes that the action of the piece is
what makes it so appealing.

“The movement of the horses makes it truly unique,” he comments,
“as well as the carving of the horses.”

The major reward Peppler earns from this type of handiwork can
be seen in the response from consumers, he believes, noting that,
“People [now] come into the showroom and know craftsmen are in the

Domino design Gaining inspiration from ideas presented at K/BIS,
Cindy Eggersgluess and Tom Pinske of The Pinske Edge in Plato, MN,
teamed up to create a truly original edge treatment that took
second-place honors in this year’s edge treatment contest.

They combined both Avonite Snowstorm and Midnight Sky Black to
create a domino edge treatment that mixes a rigid pattern with a
subtle hue.

As Pinske describes, the edge treatment was fabricated by taking
a 3-1/2″-thick piece and melding down 1/8″ thick in the center for
the little squares. Pinske made sure to take the white, so the
black square would inlay into the white.

Taking a small router bit, he machined the lines that separate
the dominoes, giving the piece “a bit of movement.”

To incorporate numbers onto the dominoes, Pinske drilled small
holes and filled them with white resin, taking the strip and gluing
it to the main countertop.

“On the miter, the domino goes around the corner,” Pinske
explains. “When we mitered the strip to do it on the counter, it
was unique how we got the domino bent around the corner so the
pieces all fit perfectly,” he adds.

The smooth top of this piece caps off the aesthetically playful

Basket design

Creating the intricate, basket weave style design that took
third-place honors in this year’s contest was much easier than it
appears, according to Peppler. 

He notes that he used thermaform around the dowel pins, and the
strips were then heated and made into the shape. 

As Peppler notes, “The thermaforming stands out, heated up and
bent. That’s what makes it unique.”

Southwestern style
Southwestern style won
a “Top Ten Placement” mention for Peppler as well. In this design,
each block Peppler used was one inch long one-half by one-half
glued together into a mosaic. 

Using the little pieces, he created one solid top and a
stunningsouthwestern aesthetic.

He also became creative in another sense, spelling “Avonite”
across the front of the blocks.

Similar to the merry-go-round, Peppler incorporated “bells and
whistles” into this treatment, cementing a string of Christmas
lights inside the piece, which were set to continuously blink.

While Peppler enjoys coming up with new and appealing edge
treatments, he thinks the real fun is in the idea process. “You
just dream up these ideas, something that will appeal to the eye
[and then you make it happen],” he concludes.

The kitchen is further animated by a polished stainless steel
skylight above the Noguchi breakfast table, which brings in plenty
of natural light. The polished concrete floor provides a strong
contrast that enhances the look of the entire room.

“This entry was a great example of lighting,” emphasizes contest
judge Jamie Drake.

“The mystical balance between natural and artificial light makes
it enormously appealing.” 

Similar to the other two winners, Bruder’s design kept the
kitchen simple, yet, functional. But, Drake, in referring to the
third place winner, may have touched on the aspect that made it

“It represents a wonderful mix of materials,” Drake said, “the
warmth of the wood contrasting against the coolness of concrete.
It’s adventurous.”

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