Thursday, October 3, 2013

Une Petite Maison -- the AIA Homes Tour

It's been over a year since my last post on the project, and we've been happily living in the house since last September.  It was featured recently in a article, and will be on the AIA Austin Homes Tour, Nov. 2-3.

The front porch was finished off with an end-of-project splurge-- Kyle Gordon of KG Stone delivered some travertine pavers reclaimed from the LBJ Library remodel, and we laid them over the existing and new concrete.

Roger and Paul Wintle of Texas Trim did a fantastic job on all of the cabinets and trim work.  Paul practically lived at the house for about six weeks, and was happy to move on when I stopped asking him to build "just one more cabinet."  Jeff Bennett stepped in to help with the office cabinets and the kitchen butcher block.  Paul's "piece-de-resistance" is featured in the new dining room/library-- a full-height wall of bookshelves.

Paul and I collaborated to design the "wood tiled wall," which is composed of ripped-down panels of maple plywood attached in a running bond pattern (which echoes the travertine on the front porch).  Rafael Gamez, our excellent painter, came up with the whitewash finish.  The "Gransuite" can be seen through the open doorway.

The boys' old bedroom and bathroom have been converted to provide a peaceful guest suite for visitors.


Decorum Stone provided the Hanstone countertops at the kitchen island.  The look complements the "Healing Aloe" paint color (Benjamin Moore) that Ashley picked for the cabinets.

The wood butcher block countertop is from IKEA.  Groove Glass fabricated the steel frame for the stair guardrail, and Nick Bell installed the maple panels.  The original white oak floors were refinished, and new flooring was laid over the kitchen's original pine.

A barn door under the stair leads to a new office, which overlooks the backyard.  We carved out some space in the hallway for a "family locker" system.

A door off of the office leads to a new laundry room.

Paul Wintle built the new media cabinet in the family room.  The master bedroom is one of the few rooms that wasn't changed during the project (though we did add a couple of bookshelves and a new dresser).

The hall upstairs has a cutout window that looks down into the dining room.

We salvaged quite a bit of the original longleaf pine from interior walls and ceilings, and re-used it as flooring in the boys' bedrooms.  The two rooms are divided by back-to-back closets, and can be closed off from the hall by a large barn door.

We were able to design a cozy nook above the vaulted dining room ceiling-- it's a perfect reading spot for Beckett.

The corner windows bring in plenty of light, and are another nice spot to perch.

Many years ago, I promised the boys a "Scooby Doo" bookcase.  We finally had a chance to design it.  The bookcase rolls aside on skateboard wheels to reveal the hidden music room.

The bathroom has good light and a simple palette of glass tile in two colors (from Hakatai).

There's still a bit of landscaping to do, but hopefully everything will be in place by the weekend of November 2nd/3rd-- come visit us on the AIA Austin Homes Tour!  Thanks to everyone who put in so much time and effort on the project (and thanks to Patrick Wong and Whit Preston for the great photographs).

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Mid-century Modern Makeover

Lloyd and Kirsten first contacted me in 2008 about a remodel to their house north of Hyde Park in Austin.  As the discussions progressed, the economy worsened, and the project was put on hold.  Eventually they sold the house and moved 2 miles south to Hyde Park proper.  We had kept in touch intermittently, and in 2011 we sat down again to discuss plans for this house.  Built in 1950, the house had some inherent mid-century charm and good flow.  An addition, however, had been poorly done sometime in the 70s-- it was out of level, uninspiring, and made no connection to the backyard.

poorly designed addition, before remodel

The addition connected the living area to the kitchen, and Lloyd and Kirsten wanted to remodel the entire space.  The main goals for the project were to open up the living area to the dining area/lounge, and open the lounge to the outdoors.

interior of dining/lounge, before remodel

We widened the opening between the living room and the dining room, keeping the existing doorway but cutting out a portion of the adjacent wall.  In order to still give a bit of separation and privacy from the street, we added a screen of vertical wood slats.

We also leveled the floors in the dining room and lounge, and added new oak flooring.  New windows and a sliding patio door bring in the light and give the house a nice connection to the new deck and lawn area.  We took advantage of a strange offset in the wall framing to create a continuous wood picture ledge on one wall.

Kirsten sourced some Eichler siding for the wall separating the lounge and the kitchen, and painted it a cool grey-green color which nicely offsets the warm maple cabinetery and the Heywood-Wakefield dining set.

The kitchen was outdated and needed some modern inspiration.

kitchen, before remodel

Kirsten and Lloyd chose a muted mosaic tile to use as a backsplash and the entire back wall of the kitchen.  Cork floors give a nice feel underfoot.

Thanks to the perseverance and great taste of Lloyd and Kirsten, and the excellent work done by contractor John Edmond, the project is a success!  Additional thanks to Whit Preston for the great photos.