In this blog I will do my best to describe the process I went through in turning my 1957 Ranch-style house into a 2006 Craftsman house as inspired by the Gamble House in Pasadena. Please feel free to comment on anything I write and ask questions as it is the only way we learn.

Note: Since completion of the house I have also decided to allow guest bloggers to post articles related to remodeling. This continues the education process.


TIMELINE
Architect Selection - December 2002 through January 2003
Getting a Permit - January 2003 through November 2004
Construction - November 2004 through September 2006
Post Construction - October 2006 through ???



Build a Better Bathroom for Your Kids

Hi everyone,

Occasionally, I will allow a guest blogger to write here in the Craftsman Remodel blog if they have good information to share. Read this blog about bathroom remodeling.
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If you’re planning a bathroom remodel, you may want to take your children into consideration, particularly if they have their own bathroom separate from the master bath. However, kids’ bathroom ideas aren’t limited to décor; you need to take their needs into consideration when designing and remodeling the bathroom as well.

Smaller People: If you have several children and are planning to live in your house for a while, it pays to remodel with shorter arms and legs in mind. You can install towel bars, shelves, and cabinets at a lower height for easier reach and put more room around the toilet so parents can help children who are potty training. You may find a handheld showerhead more convenient for washing small bodies. Choose semi-gloss paint and fixtures that don’t show fingerprints. Plan for toy storage with holders in the shower or shower curtains with built-in pockets.

Design for Growth: By all means have fun by decorating with frogs and ducks or whales, but try to make this décor easy to change. When your children are ten, they may be embarrassed by frogs on the wallpaper. However, if you limit the childish décor to trashcans and shower curtains that are easily changed, you can update the look as they grow. Many manufacturers also make stick-on decals that are easy to hang on the wall and simple to remove. Remember, too, that as they grow children will need more drawer and shelf storage for things like hair dryers and acne medications, so plan accordingly.

Shared Bathrooms: If you have two children’s bedrooms next to each other, it’s great if they can be adjoined by a shared Jack and Jill bathroom with two sinks. It’s great if the décor in the bathroom is compatible with that in both bedrooms. Plus you want both children to be happy with the design choices. If need be, go with something neutral that nobody would object to.

Getting Kids Involved: Children will love to contribute to the design and remodel of their bathrooms, so you can consult them on colors and décor elements. They might even be able to contribute artwork or paint some of the tiles. However, remember that parental guidance is still important. If they want neon green, you might be able to talk them into a softer shade or substitute a Spongebob trashcan for Spongebob wallpaper.

Safety: The tub and shower should have a slip resistant surface. If you’re remodeling, think about smaller tiles on the floor; with more grout they are less slippery than bigger tiles. You can install a scald guard faucet in the tub to ensure that water doesn’t get too hot. If you have very young children, cover the bathtub faucet with something soft and put a lock on the toilet.

Themes: You can have some fun with the décor in a kid’s bathroom. However, this doesn’t mean that you are stuck with baby ducks. Think about a nautical theme, with ship-based designs and colors. Marine life is another option as is a beach theme. All of these decors can be updated to look more grown-up as the children age.

Author Joaquin Erazo Jr. leads all marketing, advertising, and public relations strategies for Case Remodeling and Design. His team handles all client acquisition and retention efforts for the Case brands. With an MBA from Averett University, Erazo has over 18 years of experience in senior marketing positions.
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The Finishes are Going In

Lately, I have been overwhelmed with the number of things going on at the house and though I have been taking pictures, I have not had time to annotate and post them. They will arrive, just a little patience.
• The master bathroom has been tiled and looks great!

Master bathroom is tiled in glass, slate, and seagrass limestone.


• Cherry cabinets have been installed in the kitchen, master bath, and laundry room. Unfortunately, the kitchen sink cabinet was 3/4" off center from the window. The cabinet had to be shortened by 3/4" on both ends to keep it symmetric and centered on the window.

Kitchen sink cabinet is off center.


• I have purchased the soapstone slabs for the kitchen and laundry room from Soapstone West in Escondido, CA.
• Brazilian Cherry floors have been ordered from Dutko Hardwood Floors in Lawndale, CA and will be installed the first week of December. Talk about a backlog.
• The fireplace mantel has been installed and stained. Plaster will go above it and Moonlight flagstone will go below. It will be cut into manicured blocks of varying size.

Craftsman Mahogany Fireplace Mantel


• Actual work has started on the staircase. There was a lot of planning to get to this point.
• The hot tub has been delivered. We're just waiting for power now.

The hot tub has been slid into place


• The Golden Busckskin flagstone has been installed on the front and back patios.

Golden Bucksking Flagstone has been installed on the patio


• The green slate has been installed on the balconies.
• Paint samples are all over the walls. I hear they will start within 2 weeks with the paint.

Paint samples are on the walls


• Interior doors are installed and stained.

Interior Craftsman door with Delta glass

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Cabinets, Plumbing, Electrical, Insulation, Surround Sound, Roof Work, Shower Mopped,.....

I have been really busy and haven't had time for updates. I have finally organized the new pictures since my last posting on 4/16/05. I will load them up sometime this week, I promise. Here are the latest issues.
• All plumbing and electrical in the master bathroom has to shift to the left by about a foot since we had a designer lay out the cabinets.
• All insulation has been put in.
• I installed in-ceiling speaker brackets for surround sound in the living room.

Ceiling Speaker Bracket Installed


• Copper flashing is going on the roof.

Copper Flashing Installed on Roof


• The shower has been hot-mopped. We were told to pick out all bathroom tile and balcony and laundry room flooring this week.

Hot Mopped Shower


• Skylights have been framed.

Framed Skylight


• The kitchen range vent has been put in place. One of the joists had to be moved over and plumbing rerouted to make room.
• The Thermador range and Thermador dishwasher were delivered last week. I found a place in Alabama (Fredrickson's Tire and Appliance) with amazing prices through eBay. They were clearing out a supply of Thermador appliances from a warehouse that closed down. They bought everything up and were liquidating at wholesale prices.
• With the extended garage roof you now hit your head when walking around the corner. So, we dug down about 2 feet around the garage to lower the grade.

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Windows In, Roof Sheeted, Ordered Fixtures, Lessons Learned

A lot has happened in the last 2 weeks. Here's the rundown.
• For the past week, I was pushing the masons to hurry up and put in a block wall around part of the patio according to the plans. Amy came over to see it that night and we both decided it was too tall and closed in the patio too much. The following day I had the guys tear it out. It wasn't very fun telling them that.
• Installed all windows. Working on doors now.
• Ordered the master bath plumbing fixtures in oil-rubbed bronze (Phylrich Carrara Beige Marble) and the steam shower system (Mr. Steam)
• The roof is sheeted, now it's ready for waterproofing.

Plywood Sheeted Roof


LESSONS LEARNED
• Heating ducts have been a pain in the neck. Multiple small changes have been needed to make the design work. A lesson learned is that none of the subcontractors know how the other is planning on roughing out their lines. As a result, heating ducts start to go in and one by one I tell them why it can't go in a certain spot. A soffit was created upstairs to handle the ducting. Downstairs, ducting is being run without knowledge of the final beam layouts on the finished ceiling. I'm having stuff moved. They wanted to run ducts right where I need my range vented out in the kitchen, etc., etc.
The bottom line is make sure you are on site a lot during the rough-ins to make sure everything works. Only you will know how the end product is going to be used.

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Everyone is Working, Picking Fixtures, Designing Landscape, Where's My Garage

• The rough plumbing is going well. Only about 4 more days until it's done.
• The master bathroom shower, sink, and tub fixtures were picked today. They are made by Phylrich - Carrara Beige Model Series. The finish is oil rubbed bronze with the beige marble handles.
• Chose Mr. Steam MS-400T for the master bath steam shower. I purchased it and then found it for about $150 less. Oh well, maybe I'll save next time. This site has everything!

Mr. Steam MS 300T


• The electrician started today and mounted electrical boxes around the house. It seems the code of a box every 6 feet is excessive.
• The garage was torn down today due to wood rot and termites in preparation for the new garage framing and roof. This was not part of the original plan.

Garage Torn Down


• Hired John Bauman, landscape designer and former owner of the Begonia Farm Nursery.

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Next Page

Be sure to browse the 2,000 picture Photo Gallery for more step-by-step construction details.