Monday, March 31, 2014

Before and After: The Dining Room

Originally, this house didn't have a dining room.  But early in the design phase, we decided to take one of the first floor bedrooms and create one.  After all, you need someplace to have Thanksgiving dinner!

So this was our starting point....behind this wall.  The room inside was okay, but nothing exciting.

Dining Room Before 
But after removing the wall to the hallway (and yes, we rescued the phone caddy - more about that later), it changes the way the entire first floor feels.

And it's a great space!  There's room for a large table, as well as a sideboard.  I wanted to jazz it up a bit, so I painted these big, dramatic stripes on the wall (if the future buyers hate them, I can paint over them pretty easily!).

In a nod to the mid-century roots of the house, we went with this drum shade chandelier.  I just love the big metal ovals on the perimeter.

And we changed out the corner windows and put a double window on the front wall.  It looks so much nicer from the exterior and brings a lot of sunlight into the room.

Cooper Dragonette
Local artist Cooper Dragonette was kind enough to lend me this beautiful original oil painting.  Artwork adds so much to the space!

We think this is a great room for entertaining.  Wouldn't you love to have a dinner party in this room?

Chandelier - Ovala by Uttermost
Dining Table - Pottery Barn
Sideboard - IKEA
Table Lamp - Christmas Tree Shop ($14.99!)

Pin It

Sunday, March 30, 2014

The Mud Room

Mudroom Before
So, while this was the last room to get started, it's the first to get finished - go figure!  And look how much it's changed since we got started.

While we debated over whether to have a mudroom off of the garage, once we got started, we created a lot of nice features.  First and foremost, we have a wall of custom built ins.  There's a bench for putting on boots, just as you come in from the garage.  And there are lots of hooks for coats, hats, leashes, etc.  We've included a couple of mirrors, so you can do a last minute check, before you walk out the door.  We also put a radiator in the space, to keep it toasty warm on a cold winter day (and it's pretty nice for drying gloves, we've all had a chance to test that this winter!).

And behind this door, you have the water meter for the whole house.  It's easy to get to, behind this clever magnetic hatch!

We also created this large closet.  It's great place to keep sports equipment, games, toys, etc.

For lighting, we used metal marine fixtures.  They put out a lot of nice light, with a nautical flair.

And the acid etched concrete floor will provide a hard wearing surface for whatever abuse the homeowners can provide!

We agonized long and hard over whether or not to finish off this space.  But given how nicely it's turned out, we're glad we moved forward with it.  And we think the future owners will be too!  So much nicer than coming through a cold, dark basement entrance!

Pin It

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Coming Soon - The Beach Cottage

After 4 long months of construction, we can't quite believe that the finish line is in sight.  Our goal is to have it on the market the first weekend in April.  And thanks to contractors that are willing to work 7 days a week, we're getting a lot accomplished!  Not sure we can get it all done in time, but here's a quick update.


We've come a long way!  The original, cramped 2nd floor is gone and has been replaced with a spacious new structure, including a dramatic master suite, 2 additional bedrooms and bath, and lots of windows - bringing sunlight into every space!  Click here to see all the before photos.
The siding is almost done, the new columns and railing are going in and the new lights and mailbox went up yesterday. The brackets have been installed and add some architectural detail to the exterior. 


The painting is complete.  And it's made a dramatic difference.  Now, this isn't your garden variety paint job.  Matt Backman and his crew spray all the trim for a flawless finish.

And they fill every single hole in the walls, resulting in a like-new look.  This stairwell from the garage is 70 years old - see all the holes they had to fill?  Now it looks flawless!

And we're all in awe of this 70 year old fireplace.  It doesn't have a single nick or blemish.  And it looks fantastic with its new paint finish.  

But most of all, we love the bright, open floor plan.  There's lots of room for everyone to gather in the kitchen, but also to relax in the living room, or host a formal dinner party in the dining room.  The staircase alterations just got completed.  We love the mahogany handrail and crisp white newel posts.

The lighting is getting installed this week.  It really helps make the house look complete. 

As you can see, there's more to be done.  But it's getting close to the finish line!  And of course we'll be sharing lots of photos as each room is completed.   Watch the blog or Facebook for updates as we prep for the Open House.


Pin It

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Tiling Frenzy

I've had the tile saw working overtime the last few weeks.  I even burned out the pump and had to install a new one (technically it was an old garden fountain pump we had stored in our basement, but it seems to be doing the trick!).

The rooms aren't finished yet, but I thought I'd give you a sneak peek.

Do you remember the design for the Master Bath?  Well, it's starting to come together.  I'm thrilled with the marble hexagonal tiles centered in the absolute black granite border.  In the shower, the compass rose mosaic was a little tricky to install inside the marble 'frame', but it makes for a dramatic focal point for the room!

The hall bath will be home to the reclaimed lumber vanity and needed something special to set it off. Here's the design for the floor - a cafe au lait travertine border surrounds the diagonal white marble and marble dot edging.  This may be my favorite floor ever!

The dots are echoed in an accent stripe in the tub surround.

Today I finished up the first floor bath with these turkish marble planks.  It's a bold pattern and really warms up the space.  Can't wait to get the George Jetson toilet installed in here!

And last but not least, the gorgeous recycled glass tiles for the kitchen are installed and grouted.  They're just as beautiful as I remembered them.  And the iridescent Oceanside bars really set them off beautifully.  I also scattered a few random glass 'dots' throughout the rest of the backsplash to tie it all together.

We hope to get plumbing installed this week, so we'll have completed rooms ready to share soon!

Cafe Au Lait Travertine - Paul G. White Tile/DalTile
Marble Dots - Paul G. White/Soho Tile
Recycled Glass Mosaic - Old Port Specialty Tile/Sonoma Tileworks - Vihara
Turkish Marble Planks - Allen & Roth

Pin It

Sunday, March 23, 2014

Tough Wearing Concrete Floor

We continue to make progress on the mudroom and this week we finished up a crucial milestone - the floor.  We want something really, really durable.  We're assuming this will be the primary entrance for the owners.  So while this is the door to come through every time they arrive home, it will also be the one they use to come back up from the beach - with sandy feet and paws!  And sand really takes its toll on a floor.

So, we called Dave from Concrete Prescriptions and asked his advice.  He suggested we acid etch the floor.  It gives a mottled, marbleized look with a high gloss finish.  This is the first time we've tried this approach, so I was really curious to see how it was done.

First step, the entire surface needs to be ground down to remove the top layer of concrete.  This will allow the surface to be more uniform and porous - much better to absorb the acid & dye!  Dave uses a diamond wheel for grinding and quickly had a bucket full of concrete dust that was vacuumed off the surface.

Once the grinding is complete, the area is masked off and he was ready to start!

Here's what it looks like after the acid etch step.  I have to admit, I was a bit underwhelmed.  But Dave assured me the color really comes up during the glazing process.  

But before that, he adds a caramel colored dye.  With an acetone base, it dries quickly and we start to see the mottled effect.  

Dave let the entire floor cure for a few days.  It's important for it to be completely dry, otherwise the final glaze will have a milky appearance.

The unglazed floor is pretty cool looking.  I really like the mottled colors.  That will help give it that marbleized appearance.

And the finished floor looks great!  It's got a nice sheen (all the contractors that start to walk through think that it's still wet!) that adds to the depth of the finish.  It's an urban, industrial kind of look.  And best of all, it's ready to take any kind of abuse the new owners can give it.

Pin It

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Reclaimed Wood Vanity

For the upstairs hall bathroom, we didn't want to install the typical, boring vanity.  We were looking for something a little more interesting.

Pottery Barn Mason Vanity
So, I was pretty excited when I found this cabinet at the Pottery Barn outlet.  It's the base of a very expensive vanity they make, and while I like the wood base, I wasn't really crazy about the big chunky ceramic top.  So it didn't bother me that it didn't come with the cabinet.  Plus, it made for a major discount!

Instead, we have this sink top that was in the downstairs bathroom.  I really like the clean lines and practicality of it - and thought it would be great if we could reuse it.

So Kyle, from Waterhouse Builders, got to work creating a reclaimed wood vanity top, to support the sink top.  He started with some old timber joists and after cleaning them up a bit, created a 'picture frame' top, to maximize the patina edges.
Old Growth Wood Joists

He biscuited the pieces and then used Kreg screws to really tie it all together. This thing is solid!!!!

Next, it got a light sanding to take off the really rough edges, while leaving the beauty of the saw marks and aged wood.

1st Fit Up

Finally, we're applying 7 coats of polyurethane, to give it a tough protective finish.  Once that's done, it's ready for the top and faucet.  Can't wait to get it installed!  What do you think?

Pin It

Thursday, March 13, 2014

The Beauty of Hardwood Floors

We were very lucky to have red oak flooring on the first floor of the Beach Cottage.  But after removing several walls and adding a new second story, there was a lot of work to be done to have beautiful hardwood throughout the house.  The first floor was particularly difficult, because the old kitchen floor had to be completely removed and the walls that we eliminated created a challenge of patching old and new.

That's why we were thrilled when the team from Peter's Hardwood floors came to do all the floor work. Thankfully, they were up to the task!  And to make it extra challenging, we didn't have any old flooring left over to mix in where the walls were removed.  So Minh and his team had to weave in the old and new wood to create this seamless floor.  Can you tell where the walls were removed?  Doesn't it look fabulous?
Cutting in the old flooring to weave old with new
There was a wall here…..can you tell????
Sanding the new kitchen floor

Of course the kitchen had to be all new oak.  And the guys did the same great job seamlessly integrating old with new!

Upstairs, they started with this mountain of flooring and quickly installed it throughout the 2nd floor.  Somehow, this new flooring just makes the whole space seem even larger and more unified.

They applied 3 coats of finish to create a tough surface that will last for many years to come.

And the result?  Well, we're just thrilled with how they look!
Living Room & Kitchen
Don't worry…..we're going to redo the stairs!

Master Bedroom

Pin It
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...