Sunday, July 29, 2012

Kitchen Renovation: Final Reveal!

We completed the kitchen about 2 months ago.  We had a little reveal party, which is partly why I didn't post pictures until now.  We wanted to have professional photographs to post on the Architect's web site, but life (i.e. work) prevented that from happening in a timely manner.  So here are my admittedly not so great pictures of the finished kitchen.  You can see before pictures here.  Specs and product info will be at the end.  Enjoy! 

Kitchen as viewed from the new dining area.

The kitchen island with the booze trough in use. I have a better picture on Instagram.
Another view of the bar and of early arrivals to our party. 

Appliance wall and flyover bar.

Flyover bar and bookshelf for cookbooks and the Architect's barrel aged cocktails.

Range, hood and tile
Faucet, new window sill, original window
Kitchen Nook
Cocktail and Wine Nook
View from the nook
Living room as seen from the kitchen island
Living room viewed from the kitchen nook

Living room viewed from entry/dining room
Materials used in the renovation:

Paint and Tile
Cabinets and beams - Sherwin Williams "Jubilee."
Appliance wall and dining room - Sherwin Williams "North Star."
Everywhere else - Behr "Silver Sky" (matched by Sherwin Williams).
Orange accents - Behr "Koi."
Tile - 4x12 "Mosa" in white by Knoxtile.

Cabinets and Counter tops
Counter tops and booze trough - Cambria quartz counter top in "Fieldstone" with steel liner.
Cabinets - paint grade wood with baltic birch sides and back of island.
Cabinet pulls - Mockett DP3 in satin nickel.

Appliances and Flooring
Flooring - Capri cork, 24in squares in "Dark" with a polyurethane topcoat.
Sink - Krauss 30in single basin stainless steel 16 gauge undermount sink from Amazon.
Faucet - Minta by Grohe in "Super Steel."
Range - GE Cafe 30in gas range.  Purchased at Gold Star Appliances in Richardson, TX.  If you live in the Dallas area, they have the best pricing for this range.  We saved about $700 on the range.
Hood - Luftig by IKEA.
Fridge - Kenmore Elite from Sears.  Salvaged from the old kitchen.
Dishwasher - GE from Lowes. Salvaged from the old kitchen.
Wine fridge - Kenmore from Sears. Salvaged from the old kitchen.
Shelving - Elfa from Container Store.

Pendants over island - City Pendant from Schoolhouse Electric in "white."
Can lights - contractor provided.
Pendant over kitchen table - Nelson Saucer by Modernica; purchased at Lights Fantastic in Dallas, TX.

Bar stools - Industrial Iron Swivel Stool by Wisteria (orange no longer available).
Table in nook - Web Table by Crate & Barrel (no longer available).
Eames vintage fiberglass chairs - Craigslist.
Bullet planter - Hip Haven.

"Cocktail Truck" - Exploding Dog.
"Marfa Wall" - Gail Peter Borden, purchased at Galleri Urbane.

Living Room and Dining Room

Dining table - solid walnut by Bruce Marsh Designs in Brooklyn, NY (no longer in business).
Eames vintage fiberglass chairs - Craigslist.
Purple bent plywood chairs - unknown, purchased at Century Modern in Deep Ellum (no longer in business).
Sofa - unknown, left by the sellers of our house and owned by the original owner.
Danish "Z leg" lounge chairs - Selig, purchased on Ebay.
Paimio chair - Alvar Aalto, purchased at Mid 2 Mod.
Coffee table - Heywood Wakefield, purchased at Strictly Heywake.
Bar cart  - George Nelson for Herman Miller, purchased on Ebay.
Rug - FLOR (colors no longer available).

Wood and felt sculpture over bar cart - Kate Carr, purchased at Galleri Urbane.

Bookshelf and Flooring
Bookshelf - designed by the Architect and built in baltic birch by 3L Designs.
Floor - stained concrete.

Monday, May 28, 2012

Kitchen Renovation Weeks 8,9,and 10: Finally Finished!

We are finally finished!  Even though the kitchen is done, I have no new pictures yet because we are still putting the house back together.  We are saving the final reveal once we have some professional pictures taken.  So while we get our act together, take a look at this lovely video I found about the opening of the Calatrava designed Margaret Hunt Hill Bridge (aka "Large Marge").

Sunday, April 29, 2012

Kitchen Renovation Week 7: A Stumble at the Finish Line

This week we had a very good chance at being almost finished minus the install of the new range.  But work pretty much came to a standstill over a faucet and a screw.  The faucet you see here.  A Minta in Super Steel by Grohe.  A faucet the Architect might love more than me and his dog.  What is wrong with this picture is that the faucet is installed backwards.  The level is supposed to be to the side and the toggle pushes back and forth for cold and hot water.  You see, the problem is that you can't install it in the correct manner because the counter top depth in the back is too small.  Why is it too small?  The counter top fabricators failed to read the Architect's drawings where he specifically measured the EXACT depth needed so the faucet would fit and work in the desired manner.  The drawings also had an exact drawing of this faucet and how it should look installed.

The second issue was the impression of a drywall screw in the newly laid cork flooring awaiting its final finish out.  This resulted in much gnashing of teeth, wine drinking, and a terse email to the contractor.  This issue prevented the application of the polyurethane sealant on the flooring.

The contractor "did the right thing" and agreed to replace the entire section of counter top for the faucet and replace the cork tile.  So at 5pm on a Friday the flooring guys had to come over and spend an hour chipping out the defective tile and replacing it with a new tile.  Since the tile needed 24 hours to dry, no sealant was applied.  The counter top probably added another week to the project.  But it will be worth it because the counter top and the favored faucet will be correct.  In the meantime, we realized there was no water line for the fridge and the gas line still needs to be adjusted for the install of the range.

So the microwave meals and sandwiches continue.  What was accomplished this week was some tiling (minus the grout), installation of drawer pulls and lighting (minus the Nelson bubble lamp).

Tiling of the back splash and new window ledge.

Finished tile (w/o grout) and another pop of orange.

Pendant lights w/ marconi bulbs.
Detail of island where paint meets birch.
Drawer pulls from the front.
Drawer pulls from the side.
A view from the living room of the almost finished product.

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Museum Tower v. Nasher Sculpture Center

D Magazine's cover article in its new issue is about the problems that the 40 story mirrored Museum Tower is causing for its neighbor, the Nasher Sculpture Center.  The story details how the original Museum Tower doubled in size, could be a risky investment for city taxpayers and how its mirrored facade is harming the Nasher Sculpture Center and its other neighbors.

Read the article here, and Frontburner here, here, and here for additional tidbits that didn't make it into the article.

Kitchen Renovation Weeks 4, 5, 6: Drywall, Cabinets and Counter tops!

I've been remiss in posting the last few weeks, because I wasn't too in love with the kitchen and the renovation process.  Frankly, I'm tired of microwave meals, stuff piled in boxes all over my house, and construction equipment everywhere.  It really gets to me on the weekends.  Our usual Friday or Saturday night spent in consists of a few well crafted cocktails made by the Architect and we relax in our living room and listen to some music.  Then we cook some dinner and might dial up a TV show on the DVR.  Boring I know, but we like it.  While there has been some guerrilla style cocktail drinking in the house, it's been done on our futon and drinks are mixed in the bathroom.  Yeah, not so much fun.  So needless to say I'm ready for the end product to get here, and fast.

Week 3 was drywall, taping, mudding, sanding (and sanding) and painting.  Week 4 saw the arrival of cabinets, and more painting (my allergies loved the oil based paints).  Week 5 saw the arrival of counter tops and installation of the cork floor (no pics as it hasn't been completed yet).

Week 6 should see more painting (missing a second coat on one wall), installation of tile, finish prep on the cork floor, installation of light fixtures and appliances.  Wait - that sounds like it might be done?! BTW, I usually post a few quick snaps every couple of days on Instagram.  You can find me at 4squaresperinch.

Ok, now on to the pictures of progress!

Back side of island clad in baltic birch with a clear coat finish.
Cabinets awaiting their paint job.
That's a heck of a lot of drawers!

Painted cabinets and lots of drawers.
Detail where paint meets baltic birch trim.
Painted cabinets awaiting their counter tops.
Freshly painted beam in the same paint as cabinets.
A little pop of orange.
Ooooh shiny shiny counter tops...
The fly over bar also gets some orange love.

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Kitchen Renovation Week 3: Permits, Permits, Permits

Week 3 was a week were you couldn't see all that much progress in the kitchen.  But those little green tags mean we passed all our inspections.  Without these green tags we would not be able to put up drywall and begin installation of cabinets!

Week 4 sees drywall, cabinets, and measurements for counter tops!

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Calatrava's dislike of ramps.

Santiago Calatrava, the designer of "Large Marge" aka the Margaret Hunt Hill Bridge, isn't too enamored of all the ramps built to access the bridge from Woodall Rodgers and I-35. According to him we didn't need all the ramps for the cars to get onto the bridge from these freeways.  In an interview with James Russell from Bloomberg News:

“I told them they didn’t need all those ramps,” Calatrava said when I spoke to him in his Park Avenue townhouse office after I returned to Manhattan. He said they could instead have sold the land next to the bridge and earned money on developments that feature bridge and parkland views."

I'm not a fan of the mess of ramps either.  In fact, the worst part of my commute is the quarter mile drive from Central Expressway to I-35 on Woodall Rodgers.  Depending on the traffic, I can spend up to 30 minutes on Woodall Rodgers so I have had plenty of time to stare at those ramps.  They are clunky swaths of concrete that do not integrate seamlessly with our fancy bridge.  It is like wearing orthopedic shoes with an elegant ball gown.  The shoes may get you from point a to point b.  But it isn't going to happen in a pretty way.  However, Calatrava wasn't hired to design the on ramps, only the bridge.  He may have been willing to design the on-ramps, but the likelihood was that the City of Dallas couldn't afford it.

Read more about James Russell's review of the bridge here.  H/T to D Magazine's Front Burner blog where I first read the article.

Kitchen Renovation Week 2: Beams, Electrical and Plumbing

End of Week 2!
Week 2 saw more demolition and prep work for the replacement of the beam in the kitchen.  The walls we took out were load bearing so a new beam had to go in to span the space where the walls used to reside. Week 2 also electrical and plumbing.  Plumbing was inspected and approved this week and electrical should be approved in Week 3.  Next week should see drywall going up and some cabinetry by the end of the week.  Now let's get to some pictures!

Shoring walls are up.  
Nice mess of wires powering the rest of the house.
Right and left are shoring walls, middle is original wall.
Soon to be removed old beam

Old beam removed, old wiring still remains.
New beam is in and all old wiring is gone!
Can light fixtures.  Not the sexiest fixtures, but cheap and efficient.
Electrical boxes for the pendants. A preview here.
Electrical for the island had to be run through the foundation.
Re-sheathing of the second beam.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Kitchen Renovation Week 1 - Let's do some demo!

Week 1 was a short week - only 2 days of actual work.  During those two days the guys removed all the cabinets and appliances, saving the fridge, dishwasher, and disposal as those were new appliances.  We are donating the remaining appliances and cabinets to Habitat for Humanity.  We did discover some 2 problems with the renovation. 

Problem 1
In the bottom right photo you will see what looks like a beam coming across the space and into the wall.  We thought that was only duct work for the A/C.  Apparently, it also housed all the wiring for the other side of the house.  The Architect believes we can run the wiring over the new beam and through the ceiling to the rest of the house.  Or we will have to get "creative."  Yeah, getting "creative" scares me.  As in "how much more is this going to cost me" scared. 

Problem 2
The other issue was with the new beam we have to put in to span the space where we will remove all the walls.  We have to do a bit more carpentry in the ceiling to ensure the rafters (or are they joists? Clearly the Architect isn't writing this post) are properly supported.  Apparently, the ones up there right now are just kinda laying on the beam which  is twisting the beam.  The Architect assured me that this isn't a problem the way it is and the new way will be much better.  This information just fuels those nightmares I have where I come home and find my roof caved in during demo.

Week 2 sees further demolition, electrical, and the beginning of the structural work.  Exciting!

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Renovating a Kitchen!

After living in our house for about 5 years, we are finally renovating our kitchen.  This will be the Architect's first realized design and hopefully will lead to more side projects.  Over the next 6 weeks or so I'll be updating on our progress.  Hopefully this process will be more of a HGTV-type experience rather than "Renovation Nightmares."  Above are the "before" pictures.  The renovation will remove all the walls you see in the upper right and bottom two photos.  The kitchen will also double in size, allowing us to utilize some dead space for the new dining area.  I'm not looking forward to living on microwave meals and sandwiches for the next 6 weeks; but I know the finished project is going to be outstanding.  Apartment Therapy here we come!!!

Thursday, February 16, 2012

If this bridge could talk...

D magazine's Zac Crain imagines a conversation between himself and the soon to be opened and Santiago Calatrava designed Margaret Hunt Hill bridge.

Read the "interview" here.

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Weekend Plans

1. Friday night, the folks who brought you Bar 828 this past fall will have a pop-up bar Hid In in the soon to be new event space at Cane Rosso.  Doors open at 8pm.

2. This is the second to last weekend to see the Jean Paul Gaultier exhibit at the Dallas Museum of Art.

3. There is some football game this weekend.  Go here if you are looking for a place to watch it on the big screen with your friends.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Weekend Plans

1. Celebrate the Chinese New Year at the Crow Collection on Friday night when it stays open late.  You can also head over to Late Nights at the Dallas Museum of Art.

2. Saturday night head down to the Kessler Theater to see local Celtic rock band The Killdares.

3. If the theater is more your thing, the musical version of the 1956 movie Giant (and book by the same name) opens this weekend at the AT&T Performing Arts Center

Friday, January 13, 2012

Eames: The Architect and the Painter

Last month on KERA Channel 13, American Masters showed the documentary Eames: The Architect and the Painter discussing the relationship between Charles and Ray Eames and the Eames Office.  You can now watch the entire documentary online here.   You can also read some posts here from the Eames family about the film.

Hat tip to the Herman Miller Lifework blog for the links to the film and commentary from the Eames family.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Weekend Plans

1. Friday night is the Glenlivet Night's of Passage event at the Room on Main where you will learn about scotch and have the opportunity to sample from the Glenlivet catalog of scotch whiskys.  Tastings are at 6:30 and 8:30pm.

2. Saturday morning is the CADD Art Bus Tour.  Tour includes visits to Plush Gallery, PNDB Gallery, 500X Gallery, Centraltrak, a catered lunch, and a viewing of Dallas architect Gary Cunningham's private art collection.

3. Indulge in your inner geekiness at the North Texas Comic Book Show.