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 ???



Fireplace Construction Starts

Pete Ramage of Ramage Masonry has started the fireplaces and the plumber, Jaime, is putting in the gas lines to them.


Add/Review Comments


Eaves and Rafters Stained Today

Craftsman eaves and rafters were stained.
The eaves and rafters were stained today using Cabot Stain's Bark color. I had everything brushed so it would reveal the grain better and give it an older look. It worked!!! When the painters first started, they were spraying and we had to stop that fast. Instead of seeing the grain like in this picture, everything looked solid brown.
Add/Review Comments


Paint Colors Selected and Front Door Started

• Today we finally picked the actual colors of the house. The shingle siding is a clear-coated natural cedar. The window and door trim, rafters, and eaves are Cabot Semi-Transparent redwood stain. The balcony railings and trim are Passion Vine, an olive-green color. All colors except for the siding were actually choices I made after the Art Jury told me what they liked. It was easier that way since it gave me fewer choices.

• Gave Joe Madden of Madden Millworks in San Pedro the go-ahead to start construction of the front door.
Add/Review Comments


Front Door Design

I'm working on the front door right now. This picture is a sketch of what I'm trying for with a darker (mahogany) wood. I'm going to do the stained glass myself along the lines of what is shown.

Rough Idea
Mockup of my proposed Craftsman Front Door

By the way, the rain is coming again next week. We should get another 2 inches which will push L.A. up to the second rainiest ever. I guess I was just lucky to start building this year during this monsoon season. Maybe we can be number one soon. UGH!
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Modified on 1/23/08
Here is a picture of the actual door at the mill and with the final stained glass. If you look closely at the raw door, you can see the three plugs at the base of the window frame. These remove to allow me to remove the frame and swap out the glass at anytime.
Craftsman, mahogany front door in the mill and rawCraftsman Door with my custom stained glass
Add/Review Comments (2) Show Comments


Time to Redesign the Bathroom

Today's GOTCHA. I was at the house looking around at the framing on the second floor and noticed that the master bath window seemed much larger than what I had remembered so I pulled the drawings and measured it. It says the window should be 4 feet wide with a 4 foot wide shower. Then I looked at the window schedule and saw that 2, 2'-6" windows were to be ordered for the spot. Now my shower would be quite narrow. I decided to swap the shower with the counter at the opposite corner of the room. This will not only give me a larger shower but will move all of that plumbing to the outer wall of the house between the tub and toilet. A win-win in my opinion.
Add/Review Comments


Job Shut Down Due to Rain

Well we got about 10 inches out of that storm. The job was shut down for over a week. This makes for about 6 weeks of delay due to rain so far. A lot of water came in on the remaining wood floor. Let's see what's left of it when the masonite is removed. The tarps couldn't handle all of the water and the ceiling fell down in one of the downstairs bedrooms. Second floor framing work starts today.
Add/Review Comments


It's Raining Again Part Deux

It's raining again! This is getting ridiculous. It's supposed to start again on Tuesday and go at least through next Sunday. Also, I have given up on the server downtime and moved the whole web site to a real company.
Add/Review Comments


The Web Server

Some pictures of the web server set up during the construction. I'm going to move it out of here real soon as it is difficult to keep it running.


The web server is under the tarp.
Web Server Under Tarp

The phone box was moved onto the tree to keep this site going.
Phone Moved Onto Tree

The workers broke the DSL connection so I had to splice it. There's another one about 20 feet down the wire.
DSL line is spliced

Add/Review Comments


It's Raining Again!

It's raining again! The tarp on the roof started to blow off so Rich went onto the wet, shake roof with muddy shoes. Needless to say, he slid all the way off. He said he is just fine but probably used up one of his nine lives.
Add/Review Comments


Foundation Snag

Major issues today. The city building inspector came by and said that we can't build a second story on a foundation wall that is only 6" wide (six inches is standard for one-story houses here). So he decided to stop the concrete pour before we started. Rich had to run to the city engineer to have all of the calculations reverified per the city. That apparently was not good enough so luckily we got the engineer to come out to the house and visually inspect the footings. Everything was OK and we got to pour on Monday. That cost us a few days.
Add/Review Comments


Next Page

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