Visualize Your Ideas, Part 2

It’s that time of year again, when we take inventory of unfinished projects and brainstorm additions/remodeling. Sometimes it helps to mock things up full scale, or see your ideas in multiple ways. We’ve written about this before here – to help you along here are a few more strategies that have worked for us:

Backsplash Mock Up

Draw on Your Walls:

You have our permission. Take a piece of chalk and a damp rag and draw your ideas full scale onto your walls. Erase them with the rag. *You may want to test this first so you can guarantee the chalk is coming off completely. Be sure to include any trim, knobs, switches, outlets, curtains, door swings, etc. This really helps to reveal any potential difficulties with your design, for example: in the above photo I have to decide how high to make the back-splash in relation to the window sill and the window division; should the tile end just short of the orange wall or go to the corner and how will the top trim piece terminate? And this is just one corner of the kitchen… Continue reading

Craftsman Bathroom Remodel

Our 1926 house came with that classic unlovely bathroom – made worse by multiple cheap additions over the years:  linoleum floors over hex tile, “marbled” bath surround, a tiny triangle sink with hideous plywood cabinet, crumbling plaster. I wish I had a before picture for you! Sadly not. It was so ugly I never photographed it…

It was such a good day when my husband and I got out the demo tools – we have a special iron bar we call the “persuader” – and we persuaded every inch of that bathroom into the dumpster. Well, almost. We saved the original cast iron tub – which I think everyone should consider doing – cast iron holds heat like a champ, and the shape of the tub is really nice. There are companies that will re-coat the surface – just do your homework and find a reputable service. Bonus – you will save a lot of money – a nice tub is not inexpensive!

Original cast iron tub. We’ve not re-coated it yet, but it’s a great option!

Notice how the tile at the back of the tub is narrower at the right side and wider toward the drain? It’s not a mistake, the older tubs are like this so that the water will drain out – check this if you are considering tiling yourself!! (Put a level on the edges to confirm if it’s angled or level.)

We painted the trim a white that contrasted with the “bright porcelain” white of the tile and fixtures. Better to be obviously different than a bad match!

Continue reading