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 ???



The Gourmet Food Store is now OPEN!

Remodeling is hard work and takes a lot out of you so I decided to open up a Gourmet Food Store right here on the Craftsman Home Remodeling web site.

Gourmet Food Store is an epicure's paradise, an online store for those who love great food and great ingredients. We offer you the ultimate selection of international specialty foods such as caviar, cheese, foie gras and pate, gourmet chocolates, oils and vinegars, smoked salmon, specialty meats, teas, fresh truffles, and many other gastronomic delights. Explore the best and most elegant foods in the world at prices that will amaze you. Bon appetit!
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The Rug Store is now OPEN!

The Rug Store is now officially open.
Through our partnership with eSaleRugs.com, we are able to bring their entire 20,000+ collection of rugs to the Craftsman Home Remodeling website. With over 20,000 Persian rugs, Oriental rugs and area rugs in stock, eSaleRugs.com is the world's leading retailer of hand-woven and hand-knotted tribal rugs, traditional rugs and modern rugs.

Be sure to check out the Coupons/Rebates page to see if there are any deals to be had.

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Craftsman Curtain Rod Brackets

It has been awhile since I posted here so let me give you an update on the curtain rod brackets and show you what we did. My contractor wanted a web site and I needed curtain rod brackets so we bartered services. I had leftover wood and it was easy for him to manufacture so we had a win-win situation here.

The brackets are made from my leftover Honduran mahogany. Here are the long awaited pics of the unfinished brackets and the finishing process.

Here you can see a complete bracket and the two halves that make it up.

Craftsman curtain rod bracketCraftsman curtain rod bracket

The brackets are match drilled. We had to number them to keep the sets together.

Craftsman curtain rod bracket

All of my materials: curtain rod brackets and Varathane clear semi-gloss.
Craftsman curtain rod brackets and Varathane

Taking all of the brackets apart in preparation for finishing. Ebony plugs will fill the holes.

Craftsman curtain rod brackets are taken apart

The brackets are apart and ready for finishing with Varathane.

Craftsman curtain rod brackets are apart and ready for finishing with Varathane.

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Asbestos Removal and Greener Alternatives

There are many things to consider when remodeling or purchasing an older home. Homes built before 1980 have the strong likelihood of containing asbestos. Due to a steady progression of technology and green sustainable methods, there are many ways to ensure your home or property is asbestos free. If you are interested in saving money, remodeling and improving your carbon footprint, here is some information to get you on the right track.

Used in millions of homes throughout the last quarter of the 20th century, asbestos insulation can become a real dilemma for homeowners due to causing a variety of health problems, including Peritoneal Mesothelioma and Malignant Mesothelioma. These types of cancer take the lives of thousands each year.

Non-regulated asbestos material can be legally performed by homeowners, regular contractors, or licensed asbestos abatement contractors as long as the National Emissions Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants (NESHAP) are not violated.
Asbestos removal in public facilities, homes and workplaces must be undertaken by a licensed asbestos abatement contractor. Once the removal is complete, green insulation options should be given serious consideration, such as: Cellulose, Cotton Fiber and Lcynene.

The United States Green Building Council (USGBC), in a study conducted in 2003, estimated a savings of $50-$65 per square foot for well-constructed green buildings in the U.S. (see table below) during that year. The numbers continue to improve as more eco-friendly options become available, and those kinds of figures have finally begun to attract those who thought eco-friendly construction was just a bunch of hogwash.
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Craftsman Curtain Rods and Curtains

After 2 years of living here, we are getting ready to put up curtains and rods. The problem we have been having to this point is what will look good and compliment all of the wood. Well, we found something we like but the problem is that it costs anywhere from $200-$400 per curtain rod. The rods are made of oak with small ebony inserts as you can see in the picture.

Craftsman curtain rod

Craftsman curtain rod bracket

If you remember, I have a lot of mahogany and ebony left over from the job so we will be using that and make it ourselves. On a related note, my contractor Rich Wright asked me if I could create a web site for him in exchange for some work I may need done. What great timing! Rich will be building the curtain rods in exchange for his site.

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Craftsman Furniture Store

Through our partnership with Home Decorators Collection, we are able to bring their entire collection of home furnishings, including the Craftsman Collection, to the Craftsman Home Remodeling website.

Order from our Craftsman Collection to bring the classic look of the Arts and Crafts style into your home. Explore our vast selection to find furniture for every use, whether it's a desk to separate bills in your office or a bench that will store shoes in your entryway.

You'll enjoy how the extra details of cross-paneled doors, flared trim and cast metal hardware add fresh appeal to your decor. And the handcrafted construction contains solid hardwood and oak veneer, highlighted beautifully in your choice of warm finishes. See what our Craftsman Collection can do for you today; order now.
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Faucets, Sinks, & Tubs Oh My!!!

We are pleased to announce the opening of our newest store; Faucets, Sinks, & Tubs. Through our recent partnership with eFaucets, we are able to bring their entire collection of trusted mega brands include Delta, Moen, Kohler, American Standard, Price Pfister, Danze, Grohe, Giagni, Hansgrohe, Blanco, Teka, In-Sink-Erator, and many more to the Craftsman Home Remodeling website.
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This Old House Magazine

The magazine that had contacted me several months ago was This Old House. I had submitted a few before and after pictures and they really liked it. Unfortunately, I didn't have enough before pictures for them to run a story. If you remember, when this project started the plan was to add a room and try to save everything so there wasn't supposed to be any drastic changes. Also, the demolition guys worked so fast that I couldn't get any pictures after the first day.

I worked with one of the This Old House writers for about a month to get her all of the information she needed. After pitching it to the editor, it was decided they would not do anything with it due to the lack of before pictures.

If any other magazine people are reading this (American Bungalow, Sunset, etc.), you can feature this house if you like as it has not been in any magazine....yet.
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Kids Arts & Crafts Area

Now that the palm tree is gone, we have a big space (4.5' x 9') that can be used for something. After looking at the space for about 6 weeks, we have decided to turn it into a kids' Arts and Crafts area. I just bought the lumber yesterday and will be building it over the next few days. Stay tuned.

The palm tree that was just removed made for the future Arts and Crafts center.

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We Won the Pond Competition!

Back on May 13th, my post talks about how we were cleaning up the koi pond for the pond landscaping competition. Well, I just found out that we took first place for small ponds under $10,000. As soon as I get a picture of the award I'll post it here.

Landscape Award for Forte Craftsman House

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Next Page

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