Thursday, December 9, 2021

Creating a 2nd Floor Bedroom and Bathroom Suite

Why did we buy the bungalow?  Because as soon as I saw the staircase to the unfinished attic, I knew we could make it something special.  I didn't have any details in mind at that point - but knew it had potential.  It had a big footprint and high ceiling peak, the perfect set of requirements!

So over the course of the 8 month project, we transformed the space from a dark cramped attic to a light & bright retreat.  But it wasn't easy.  Hip roofs are a challenge and it took a structural engineer to come up with a design that we could build.

The starting point was daunting - attic insulation was falling from the rafters, there were a LOT of animal droppings (with multiple discussions about what kind of animal left them😂), and the low headroom kept us from exploring the whole space.

We started by cutting giant holes in the back and side, to create a bedroom dormer and a bathroom dormer.  And we were thrilled to discover the lovely view.

Bathroom coming soon!

We cut away a lot of the roof!!

Once the framing started, we got a good idea of what the space would be like in real life - much more helpful than the drawings, which didn't reflect the funky roof lines.

And we wanted to maximize storage space, so we built in IKEA dressers into the wall (see here for the how-to).

But of course a room doesn't look good until all the finishing touches are done.  We had millwork custom made to match the original house, installed reclaimed beams to hide all the structural elements and installed lots of lighting.

I love the office space at the top of the stairs, in the original dormer.

And the bedroom space is so bright and inviting with the huge triple window.

The bathroom has a blend of traditional with a dash of contemporary.  The marble floor is a traditional style, but the glass wall in the shower adds a modern touch.  

Was it worth all the work?  I'll let you decide!

Staircase stayed in same location!


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  1. What a wonderful room at the top of the stairs.

  2. I ordered them from Hammond Lumber. Sorry, can’t remember the manufacturer.

  3. This bedroom and bath are stunning and I love the built in Ikea dressers, what a great idea! Your houses are outstanding, I love to see the progress on each of them.


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