With the trip to Mexico and trying to get the story posted about our climb, I’ve neglected to follow-up with the final post on our master suite remodel. I’ve had a number of people ask me about it over the last week. I know Shelley uploaded some to an online photo album, but mainly her friends and some of the family got that so I wanted to get the remodel updated.
The final photos weren’t taken till the week after we got back from Mexico. Although we moved back into the bedroom, there were a couple final touches that were not completed and that kept us from taking any final photos. The main obstacle was the missing door on the bath vanity. The door manufacture kept sending it back for quality control reasons. Which kind of surprised me since they screwed up so many other things with the cabinets and shipped them anyway. Why the fuss about a door? Anyway, the door and a couple minor things kept us from actually calling the remodel finished.
Here are some before and after shots of the master suite.
Well start with the bedroom itself. We didn’t do much in here. We tore down the old molding and replaced it with the molding I’ve been making for the rest of the house. Although I made all the wood molding, I didn’t install it. We had Gammill’s crew do that. They were much faster and much better at it. We replaced the carpet with hardwoods (which are throughout the master suite now) and the curtain rods. We also had the room repainted the same Venetian Plaster that it was before the remodel. We kept the same curtains. That’s it for the remodel in there. We installed a flat screen TV and moved the armoir to the side of the room which opened up the flow a bit more making the room feel larger. We put the TV up a bit higher than normal so the view wouldn’t be totally blocked. It’s not that bad when watching it from the bed.
In the closet, we removed the floor cabinets then had Treasure Valley Closets come in and reorganize the layout. We have so much extra space now, it’s hard to believe. We literally have a number of shelves and cabinets that are simply empty because we have so much more room in the closet. I love the pull down hanger too. I don’t wear suits that often, so there wasn’t any reason to put them down low and take up space for other things. So we put them up high and that gave me more space for shelves down low that I use more often. The military uniform you see hanging on that pull down hanger is my dad’s WWII uniform. When we had the floor cabinets removed, we opened up the laundry chute access. But we wanted to keep the laundry chute, but now it was out in the middle of the floor. So the hardwood guys framed out the opening and installed a trap door for our laundry chute.
The biggest change in the bedroom came in the shower, tub and sink. With the tub, we lowered it a few inches so we could under-mount it and then reduced the size of the tub surround to open up the floor space. Instead of tiling around the tub we had wood work done to match the sink counter-top. The shower layout is the same, we just changed the tile and shower fixtures and put the same pebble floor in that we installed in the Seattle house. We like arches, so we added an arched entry way into the shower as well. The tile guys did a great job tiling around that arch. You would have to see it in person to see the detail work they did on the edging. We also added an archway leading into the closet.
The sink cabinet was raised up a few inches to kitchen counter-top height. Shelley and I didn’t like having to bend over to reach the sink. I always felt like I was hunched over when I was washing my hands. Not now. This also gave us more room under the sink and allowed us to make the drawers deeper. We then added a middle cabinet to the counter-top. We took out the large, one-piece mirror and replaced it with two individual mirrors. Lastly, we took the dead space along the back wall where the ironing board was and filled it in with a built-in wall cabinet. There is so much room now in the bathroom. Like the closet, we have a number of shelves and drawers that are empty.
This is the wall space behind the sinks I was talking about where the ironing board had been. That section where the mirror was, we extended that out to the left and boxed in the ironing board, then filled in that space with a wall cabinet. The ironing board is gone. We still have one downstairs in the laundry room, just not a wall type. The heater vent is still open under the wall cabinet so we didn’t have to do any HVAC changes under the floor. The chandelier in the photo looking back to the tub was put in by us after Gammill was finished. It is not to code. You’re not allowed to have an exposed light over a bathtub. We don’t care. Some idiot somewhere probably put one up and didn’t tighten a screw down and it fell, now everyone is concerned about me and won’t let contractors put them up. Again, we don’t care. If it falls, it’s my fault. But it won’t fall. Trust me.
Because of the extra height of the counter-top it makes it a bit harder to see myself in the mirror when I’m shaving or putting in a contact lens. I can’t lean over to the mirror like I used to. Since I’m near-sighted, I have a hard time seeing small details at a distance when I don’t have my glasses on. So, inside the upper cabinet there in the middle of the counter-top we added two mirrors to the inside of each door. The doors have full 180 degree hinges to allow the doors to swing completely out so you can use the mirrors. We didn’t want to put those side mirrors up on the walls like we had before.
Finally, we installed an ADA, or what is referred to as a “comfort height”, toilet. Again, it’s the same toilet we used in the Seattle house. Not only is it pretty quite and comfort height, it is also dual flush. It’s my way of reducing my carbon footprint and help me offset all the incandescent bulbs we have in the house and our 20 mpg vehicles. But I have a dual flush toilet!!
We are still working on a few final issues in the bedroom. Obviously, the hardwood floors are an issue with the dogs. Jake likes to pace at night before settling in, and than he paces some more when I come home at 2:00 am. The clicking of his nails on the floor was annoying at first, but we saw this coming. We are getting used to it and as Shelley finds some rugs she likes, we will get them down in the bedroom to reduce the noise. In the sink area, we ran into something we had not expected. The tub-half of that area is over the downstairs guest bedroom. This room runs to approximately the first sink (if you’re looking at the vanity, the sink on the left). The other sink, Shelley’s sink, is over the house’s foundation. In the winter as you walk barefoot along the floor, you can feel the temperature change in the floor, from warmer to colder. Since the guest bedroom is heated, that portion of the floor is warmer then the area over the foundation. Again, we eventually will get a rug for this area as well and that will no longer be an issue. We chose not to put in underfloor heating during the planning stage. If I had realized this issue, I still would have voted against underfloor heating. I just didn’t see a need for it like we did in Seattle.
Lastly, I have to put up some curtain drawstring ties in on all the windows. The pull-down blinds have very long strings that drag on the floor and we don’t use them much, if at all. So I bought some tiedowns on eBay and just need to put them up so the strings are not dragging. Minor stuff.
Other than that, it’s all done. We love it. We have way more storage space then we’ll ever need (I hope!) and the floor space opened up quite a bit with the new lay out and we didn’t have to move any walls or do anything structural. I know some of you are doing a remodel now or are planning a remodel and I hope there was some ideas here you liked or things you hadn’t thought of that came up while reading these posts. We always learn a little bit every time we do something like this and maybe our experience will save you some grief or give you a better idea about something. It is always interesting to see how someone else did something, even if you don’t apply it to your own project.
So, what’s next? That’s funny. Nothing. I have to put up some molding around the stairs leading up to the loft, but no big projects like this one for a few years. The only major project left is the wine cellar and that may be a couple of years away. I think we may just sit back and enjoy things for a while and get the knick-knack stuff out of the way that has been nagging at me for the last year. That would be good.