Saturday, January 30, 2016


I'm about to let you in on the biggest secret of our home remodel.

Kings and emperors have hidden passageways and secret entrances.  Super-villians have concealed booby traps in hidden lairs. Daring smugglers have false floors over secret compartments.

Librarians have... SECRET BOOKCASE COMPARTMENTS!! I am a grown-up, and I own a house, and dammit, I will put a top-secret spy bookcase in that house.

Can I hide all my bones and treats in there? Pleeeeeeease?

Admittedly, there is a slightly less whimsical reason for doing this. We're installing a bookcase in an otherwise unusable short space under a dormer. But we need to preserve access to that funny little corner, because it has a panel to a crawl space where we'll need to do maintenance occasionally. So Brett made the perfectly reasonable suggestion that we make the bookcase removable. I then insisted we put it on hinges, purely because a hidden-door bookcase is obviously much cooler than a removable bookcase. And purely because he's a good husband who puts up with my insanity, he agreed.


The framing and supports are taking shape now. I already can't wait!! Now I just have to convince Brett to make the bookcase open automatically when you pull out the right book...

Sunday, January 24, 2016

Deconstructed Bathroom - That Makes it Art, Right?

I haven't had too much visible progress to post about the bathroom for a month or so. But that's not because things aren't happening. They're just going on behind the scenes.

Before we do the major plumbing and electrical work, Brett suggested we already have ready all the fixtures we're planning to use. That eliminates error and lets us move quickly and in a sensible order once we start construction.

So while little has been happening upstairs, the basement has been filling up with the individual components we're going to use. We basically have an entire bathroom - just deconstructed.

Here's your sneak peek of the art to come!

Fisherman Sconce, Nickel


Sunday, January 17, 2016

Window to the World

Our master bathroom is starting to look like a room. Not, you know, a finished room with actual floors and walls. That would just be crazy. But at least a framed-out, enclosed space.

One of the first challenges we faced when designing this bathroom was maintaining light throughout the master suite.  The second floor is cross-shaped, and was entirely open. One of the best things about the room is that this shape lets in light from all four sides. It's really beautiful up there at pretty much any time of day. We were worried about cutting off the natural light from one side when we enclosed the bathroom.

The solution?  A window! We decided to install a window in the dividing wall. I'll frost the glass so you won't be able to see through it, but it will still let light through. We're also going to look for a similar divided-light glass door, which will get the same treatment.

View from the bedroom. A wall with an installed window... and is that a door frame?

View from inside the bathroom-to-be.

We found the vintage window at an architectural salvage place. (Handy tip: this is BY FAR the cheapest way to get cool old windows.) I was hoping for a metal industrial window, but we couldn't find one the right size. I'm planning to paint the muntins and mullions black to mimic the look somewhat. 

Baby steps, but we're getting there. *sings off key* I can seeeee cleaaaaarly now....