bathroom update

Bathroom Series, 1 of 3

We received some positive feedback about our Winnetka Colonial Chronicles, and we've been on something of a bathroom bonanza, so we decided to present three recently completed bathrooms as a series. This is the first of three, a guest bathroom in need of a refresh.

We'll start with the "before" pics:

Ah, the carefree days when 4x4 square tile and white grout was used liberally all over the bathroom. Simpler times.

Ah, the carefree days when 4x4 square tile and white grout was used liberally all over the bathroom. Simpler times.

The shower was long, but it lacked storage and a bench. The chunky chrome frame was a dominant feature in the bathroom.

The shower was long, but it lacked storage and a bench. The chunky chrome frame was a dominant feature in the bathroom.

And now the "after" pics:

The new bathroom exchanges the short pedestal sink for a full-height black vanity with storage, the polished chrome for warmer tones, and the ongoing maintenance of white grout for charcoal. 

The new bathroom exchanges the short pedestal sink for a full-height black vanity with storage, the polished chrome for warmer tones, and the ongoing maintenance of white grout for charcoal. 

Black & white doesn't have to be old-fashioned or overtly masculine. Here we used an elongated white subway tile to update a classic look and softened the visuals with a decorative backsplash.

Black & white doesn't have to be old-fashioned or overtly masculine. Here we used an elongated white subway tile to update a classic look and softened the visuals with a decorative backsplash.

Extending the tile to the ceiling draws the eye up, and frameless glass removes the visual weight of the shower enclosure. 

Extending the tile to the ceiling draws the eye up, and frameless glass removes the visual weight of the shower enclosure. 

The addition of a small bench and shower niche adds comfort and storage for a more functional shower.

The addition of a small bench and shower niche adds comfort and storage for a more functional shower.

In some ways, this updated bathroom is a nod to classic bathrooms of the past. We like the use of easy maintenance materials, improved functionality, and crisp lines--and we hope our client's guests appreciate it, too. It's a great pleasure work with clients who entrust us with the design of these projects, and we hope this bathroom serves their family and guests well for a long time.

We'll tour a completely different bathroom in the following Bathroom Series, 2 of 3. Cheers!

 

 

 

Let's Not Screw This Up, Shall We?

There are plenty of instances when we smash some living spaces before we reassemble them, and truth be told, they had it coming. It was just a matter of time, and time has ravaged these homes. No tears. Nothing to preserve. There's too much to do. You look at what's possible, make sure your tetanus shots are up to date, and get to work.

And then there are some truly beautiful homes in need of a few updates. It's gratifying to work on these, but a different mindset is required. It's the difference between "brace yourself for impact" and "let's not screw this up, shall we?" Going back and forth from the former to the latter in the same day takes a little getting used to.

Below are two examples of beautiful homes in need of a light touch to make them just right for their respective owners. 

First, a bathroom in need of a tub-to-shower conversion. Rip out the tub, replace the tile, new plumbing fixtures, glass shower enclosure, and couple other minor items. No big deal, right? Except that the existing bathroom was pretty nice before we arrived. Nothing defective, nothing that would make you shudder in horror, and it was obvious to us that the bathroom had been well-designed and well-constructed with good quality materials.  

Still, it did not fit the needs of the current family, and now it does.

By the way, a message to whomever laid the original tile: it took us many hours of hard labor to remove it because you were trained on the Hoover Dam or something else designed to last forever. Expert craftsmanship is a serious pain to redo, and we admired your work, in a way. We hope you would approve of the result.      

At what height should the shower head be placed? Tall owners require taller than average placement, so it's a good idea to stand in the shower before setting the final plumbing position. 

At what height should the shower head be placed? Tall owners require taller than average placement, so it's a good idea to stand in the shower before setting the final plumbing position. 

Next up is a century-plus old farmhouse that had been well-maintained and tastefully modernized over the years. The original details were thoughtfully preserved and a small handful of updates were requested by a family that appreciated the classic good looks of this old home.

In this case, the master bedroom needed new wood floors, a more functional walk-in closet, new lighting, paint, and a better hold on the proportions of the large space with the vaulted ceiling.

Access to the closet though two new barn doors, and the alcove above the barn doors was enclosed to manage the proportions of the bedroom. Carpet was replaced with new red oak flooring to match the existing floor in the house. 

Access to the closet though two new barn doors, and the alcove above the barn doors was enclosed to manage the proportions of the bedroom. Carpet was replaced with new red oak flooring to match the existing floor in the house. 

LED lighting recessed into the beams illuminates the tall ceilings with up-light.

LED lighting recessed into the beams illuminates the tall ceilings with up-light.

The new closet with built-ins by  Perfection Custom Closets  includes a desk with under-cabinet lighting. 

The new closet with built-ins by Perfection Custom Closets includes a desk with under-cabinet lighting. 

This old farmhouse is in good hands with the current owners, and we expect it will be well-lived in for many years to come. There is something enduring and endearing about this home, and we were glad to be a small part of it. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Remodeling and Home Design