Using Kirei Board
October 5, 2007 7:36 AM   Subscribe

Experiences with kirei board?

I'm considering making extensive use of kirei board in remodeling my kitchen. For example, I'd like to cover the existing Ikea cabinet doors and and drawer fronts with it, and even use it as a countertop. My one (known) concern is how to handle the board edges - which feel untreated and I'm concerned will even if sealed absorb moisture over time.

I've read what I can (some links below) and have played with a few sample tiles, but before I start does anyone in the meta-world have actual experiences using kirei or know of any downsides not mentioned in the generally positive links or otherwise point me to non-obvious sources of information or experience?
posted by RandlePatrickMcMurphy to Home & Garden (4 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
Best answer: We (I am an architect, but IANYA) have used it on a number of projects in our office, and it is definitely a little troubling/nervousing to use in a "commercial" project, where expectations of durability, wearability and low-low-maintenance are the norm. Residential is less demanding, but a kitchen is still a pretty high-use area. You are right to be concerned about the edges, although protecting them from damage may be your larger concern.

You should definitely seal the edges (are they sending you prefinished samples?) -- seal all 6 sides actually, to eliminate cupping due to moisture absorption.

We have typically protected the edges where we have used it - unprotected kirei is pretty susceptible to damage, and if you can touch, you will want to consider protecting it.

Kirei darkens when exposed to direct sunlight - something to just be conscious of. Most other natural materials do as well, so it is not a strike against it, but i have seen it happen to samples we have in our office.

I would stongly recommend you not use it on your countertop, unless you cover it with so much epoxy or resin that it is more plastic than kirei.

I would be glad to try to answer any specific questions you have.
posted by misterbrandt at 1:31 PM on October 5, 2007

Response by poster: Excellent points, thanks.

Based on this I'll go with a different countertop and apply either some commercial edging or some hardwood on the edges.

I didn't see an email in your profile or on your website tho, if you are really open to others questions as this goes forward....
posted by RandlePatrickMcMurphy at 7:16 AM on October 9, 2007

Response by poster: Oh, never mind, I don't know why I didn't see that email in first glance...
posted by RandlePatrickMcMurphy at 7:16 AM on October 9, 2007

Best answer: John from Kirei here. Your question popped up on my google alerts, so I figured I would butt in and see what i can offer. Thanks for your question, and your answers. It still amazes me how fast Kirei Board has reached the world, and I really appreciate both of you using it.

To respond to your questions: I agree that the edges of Kirei Board can be somewhat chippy and damageable, so I agree with your idea to edge it with hardwood for the cabinet doors and drawer facings. some really interesting contrasts can be achieved with different woods, or bamboo.

As for countertops, I also agree that like wood, you should seal all the edges to avoid water penetration. There are some great waterborne resins out there (try aquadura from that could make for a great countertop surface as well.

Thanks again for using Kirei, and feel free to contact us if you have any questions.
posted by johnkirei at 7:35 AM on October 9, 2007

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