Sunday, April 26, 2009

A New Window!

A New Window!

My new window, shown in the top two photos, has been installed in my bathroom and it is fabulous! Double pane, rain glass, installed properly to sit above the tub deck, not below it! We had rotten wood on the exterior, so it was due to be changed anyway. That cheap single pane window, shown in the bottom two photos, just did not do my bathroom justice. Nor did it insulate any being on the east wall, where we had direct sun in the morning.

You can see in the lower photos that the tile on the tub deck previously died into the glass of the window. By getting a shorter window and installing it 6” above the tub deck, I’ve created a wall for the new granite deck to die into. This window will also have a granite sill, so if a random wet washrag or soap bottle gets put on the sill, the water will not be a problem.

It has been trimmed out in wood beautifully by my carpenter, who thought to add the small crown at the top. I was considering doing an upholstered cornice above that window, now that it is so beautifully trimmed out, I may not. I’m very happy with this installation and my new double pane window!

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

My Cabinets!

My Cabinets!

I am soooo lucky! I had a wonderful cabinet maker build my cabinets and trim out my bathroom. His work is fabulous! It took about a week and a half, but everything turned out beautifully.

I have my super deep medicine storage cabinet, my custom jewelry cabinet , my tall linen cabinet, my 36” high sink vanity (no more stooping!) with perfectly aligned cabinet drawers and doors, and of course, my beautiful walnut vanity! I have wonderful full extension glides and European hinges. I have my simple recessed panel doors with a minimal bit of routing for detail. Since it was built on site it fits my bathroom like a glove. Well built cabinets are a true luxury and the people that build them are true craftsmen.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Plumbing Fixtures

Plumbing Fixtures

I have some fabulous plumbing fixtures going into my bathroom. They are heavy and feel good in your hand and have a lovely matte bronze finish. The wall mount faucet is a modern touch while the overall style is traditional. The shower will have a “Torrent” shower head with multiple spray options and a hand held sprayer with three spray options as well. It is thermostatic, so once you set it on the temperature you like, it will always come on that way. How luxurious!

The tub is the Kohler Serif bubble massager. I love the graceful oval shape, it relates to the oval shape of my sinks and my mirror over the vanity. I like not having the big jets inside the tub, just little pin holes for the water to shoot through. I only had a 5 ft. tub in there to start with and only a 5 ft. tub would go back in. Luckily, this beautiful curvaceous tub comes in a 5 ft model that fits my tub deck exactly!

The toilet is my favorite Kohler, Memoirs, Stately version. I like the traditional “crown moulding” look to the tank and of course, the comfort height and elongated bowl. As we get older, we all like the comfort height, a bit higher to make it easier to get up and down.

All of these products are of high quality and I can’t wait to use them!

Tuesday, April 7, 2009



The finishes for my bathroom are shown in the photo above. It took a long time to come up with the selections. I went through so many samples getting just the right color palette and look that I wanted.

My bedroom and bath had been a light grayed down blue color since we moved in back in 2000. I liked the blue as a cool, restful color in this hot climate, but I was tired of it. I decided to go for a light, soft green, almost light pistachio color scheme to keep it cool, relate it to my garden, and make it appealing to future buyers. “Green is gold” for resale you know!

It started with my granite I found at a stone yard about a year ago. It captured that color perfectly with a subtle pattern and not much variation. Some suppliers call it Costa Esmerelda, but it’s not the typical blue/green color of most Costa Esmereldas. It is more of a light pistachio. The granite will go on the countertops and tub deck. I also usually do the threshold of the shower in a stone for maintenance purposes.

From there, I looked for tile. I wanted my floor tile to be larger in scale and sort of serve as a background for the room. (Not much detail) I like porcelain tile for maintenance, but I much prefer tile that does not have the fake variation most of them do. I wanted a really soft, consistent look with rectified edges so that it could be butted together with a tiny grout line. Basically a monolithic floor with a hint of traditional style in the pattern, laid in a running bond. The tile I selected is from Arizona Tile, 18” x 18”, Fabula Avorio. It is a good neutral with a greenish cast to the color.

Of course, I couldn’t resist the “wow” factor. I went for 1” x 1” glass mosaics with a listello from Walker Zanger in this lovely subtle matte or sand blasted look finish. It looks like sea glass washed up on the beach! It’s beautiful in my color scheme of greenish neutrals with a bit of bronze color. The bronze relates to the metal finish on the fixtures and hardware in the room. This tile will go on the backsplash at the sink vanity and the tub as well as inset in the back wall of the shower.

I’m doing these wonderful light olive pebbles from Daltile in the shower stall. I love the look and feel of pebbles in a shower. It’s like a foot massage and gives a spa-like feel.

My paint color is still to be decided. I’ll wait until the tile goes in I think. I usually select everything before, but I’m not sure how much green I want in the wall color. I want a very light color, a lighter version of the floor.

I’ll show you my fabulous plumbing fixtures next!

Friday, April 3, 2009


I have sheetrock now and I love how clean the space looks. I think I’ll just leave it like this and put a toilet in. I guess a shower would be nice.

I had a smooth finish applied to the walls, no texture. It actually needs one more going over, after priming the walls. My sheetrock guys are sooo good, that’s all they do, sheetrock and texture. They do not paint or strip wallpaper! They always make that perfectly clear! (and if you’ve stripped wallpaper, you know why!) So I have to prime or get my painter to do that. I’ve decided to do that myself.

I stripped the wallpaper on the few existing sheetrock spaces we kept, and it was time consuming and miserable. I tried all kinds of products, but a steamer worked best. My skin was dewy soft and I was dripping when I finished the toilet room. The builders around here took the fast approach to applying the finishes in these houses and didn’t prime the walls before applying paper. They stuck it directly to the sheetrock, so if you aren’t very careful, you can take the sheetrock off with the paper and leave pock marks all over.

I’d like to say a word about my contractors. I firmly believe in getting the people that specialize in what they do to do the work. So many remodelers like to have one guy do several parts of the job. I’ve been on jobs where one contractor (hired by the homeowners against my advice) did all the sheetrock, painting, electrical, plumbing, everything! Then they are surprised when they get low quality work. First of all, I hire a master electrician and plumber on every job. They are always licensed and insured. The other contractors do their own specialty work all day long, so they are very practiced and can do the job in the most efficient way with the best outcome. It is apparent when you see the sheetrock work in my bathroom and it makes me very happy!
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