Projects & News


Victorian Garage Addition in Columbus, WI

We’ve recently been working on an addition and remodel of an old Victorian home from the 1850’s.

It’s the oldest home we’ve ever worked on! The homeowner’s want a larger, updated kitchen, mud room, and laundry room. They also want to remove their 2-car garage and build a new 3-car garage addition. All of this while maintaining the period look of the home and increasing it’s value.  

Our first post about this home will be covering the 3-car garage we’re adding to the home. The homeowner’s existing garage was too small to fit two cars. It also faced the wrong direction, making it difficult to get in and out of. 

Garage Addition Before

Garage Before

Garage Addition Before

Garage Before- Facing perpendicular to driveway

Garage Before- The garage was difficult to get into because of the direction it faced

The homeowners had plenty of room on their lot to build a new, larger garage that faced the street. This would make for easier access and a more spacious driveway. The first thing we did was remove the existing 2-car garage and leveled the area. 

Garage Addition During

Garage Removal

After the foundation walls were poured, framing began on the new 3-car garage addition.

Garage Addition During- Framing

Garage Addition During- Framing

We decided to build 3 gables on the garage over each garage door. The gables make the garage more interesting to look at and go with the style of the home.

Garage Addition During

Garage Addition During

Garage Addition During

Garage Addition During

Garage Addition During

Garage Addition- Almost finished!

Garage Addition- Almost finished!

Inside each gable we mixed half-round and shake siding to match the gables on the rest of the home. Each gable will also get a custom designed fretwork accent.

Garage Addition- Gable Detail

Garage Addition- Gable Detail

Please stay tuned! We’ll be uploading more photos as this addition project reaches completion. We’ll also be posting about the kitchen remodel that was phase 2 of this project. 

To see more project photos, visit our New Homes & Additions photo gallery.


Craftsman Sunroom- NARI Coty Award Winner!

On November 1st we were awarded the NARI Contractor of the Year Award in the category of Residential Interior- $75,000 & under for our Craftsman Sunroom! We love working with homeowners that allow us to do fun projects like this one!

These homeowner’s had an unusable room found in many homes- a 3-season front porch. The room was uncomfortable most months of the year due to improper heating and cooling. In addition, a wall with french doors divided the porch from the living room. This created a dark, uninviting space in an otherwise charming living room. The homeowners loved the natural light that came into the porch, but they wanted to be able to use the room year- round as a sunroom. Another top priority of these homeowners was to incorporate the Craftsman-style woodwork and charm found throughout the rest of their home. 

We ran into many challenges along the way including having to replace the existing site-built windows with Marvin casements in the existing masonry openings, cutting access through the concrete slab floor to run baseboard heat into the room, and matching the height of the new wood floor to the existing wood in the living room.

The finished product is a beautiful sunroom and reading room that the homeowners are now able to use year-round. We incorporated a custom-built room divider at the entry to the sunroom that gives the room a huge “wow-factor”. We also matched the new trim to the Craftsman-style trim found throughout the home, creating a space that looks original to the home.

This home was also featured in the 2017 NARI Tour of Remodeled Homes this spring. We had multiple people comment that they couldn’t tell what was new and what was original to the home. After showing them the before pictures, they realized the huge transformation!


Thank you to the sub-contractors who helped us on this Craftsman Sunroom project. Amazing rooms like this would not be possible without you!

Rockweiler Insulation

Schreffler’s Custom Wood Flooring

Hellenbrand Electric

Broihahn Custom Woodworks

Saeman Lumber Co.

RG Heating & Air Conditioning


Craftsman Sunroom 1

Craftsman Sunroom 2

Craftsman Sunroom 3

Craftsman Sunroom 4

Craftsman Sunroom 5

Craftsman Sunroom 6

Craftsman Sunroom 7

Craftsman Sunroom 8

Craftsman Sunroom 9

Craftsman Sunroom 10

Craftsman Sunroom 11

Craftsman Sunroom 12

Craftsman Sunroom 13

To see more photos of our award winning projects click here.


Cookie Cutter Gets Character in Madison, WI- NARI CoTY Award Winner!

Friday night we took home another NARI COTY Award for this amazing first floor remodel!
Winning category: Residential Interior $75-150K.

This home in Madison, WI had a boxy layout, small kitchen, and lacked character. Also, it was short on enough storage for pantry and small kitchen appliances. The homeowners wanted a more open floor plan with better flow. By re configuring the space, we were able to give them the home they’ve always wanted.

First, we opened up the entry to allow flow into a new mudroom and laundry room. We used wasted space in the old dining room to create these two new rooms. Then we turned the old laundry room into a walk-in pantry, giving the homeowners some much needed storage. 

Next, we expanded the kitchen and removed an awkward and unwanted third dining space. The first floor is now visible from the kitchen for optimal entertaining. In addition, the peninsula wraps around and flows into the sun room, allowing for extra seating. 

Lastly, we updated the home with “old house character.”

We stained the honey oak floors a darker more rustic brown. We added touches of industrial flare while making sure the materials looked timeless. Furthermore, we added an archway into the dining room with a tray ceiling. This gives the space some architectural detail and a wow-factor. 

In the end, we transformed this first floor from 3 rooms into 5 rooms. The homeowners now have a showstopper kitchen and dining space that is open to the living room. As a result, they couldn’t be happier. We checked off everything on their wish list and more. 

A special thank you to all of our contractors and carpenters who make our designs a wonderful reality!

Hellenbrand Electric

Rockweiler Insulation

Schreffler Custom Wood Flooring

To see more of our award winning project photos, visit our Award Winning Designs page.

First Floor Remodel

CoTY 2015

First Floor Remodel

First Floor Remodel

First Floor Remodel

First Floor Remodel

First Floor Remodel

First Floor Remodel

First Floor Remodel

First Floor Remodel

First Floor Remodel

First Floor Remodel

First Floor Remodel

First Floor Remodel

First Floor Remodel

First Floor Remodel

First Floor Remodel

First Floor Remodel

First Floor Remodel


Award Winning Interior- First Floor Remodel

We are so very proud to announce that we have won both the local NARI Contractor of the Year Award (COTY), as well as the Regional COTY Award for Region 3 North Central for our work on this old beautiful home in Madison. We love creating beautiful spaces like these!

This award winning project was especially a challenge due to the age of the home. We had a kitchen that was sloping 3 inches in both the floor and the ceiling. This made the casing as well as the cabinetry a challenge. We had to make it all as straight as possible, while structurally improving the house as a whole.

Many replaced headers, beams, posts, and floor joists later, we had ourselves a structurally stable house to work with. The challenges never ended, however. We had trim challenges, hood venting challenges, lighting challenges, and so much more.

The end result is a beautiful home this family can enjoy for years to come. They now have a first floor that has much better flow and ease of use, a more functional kitchen, and better lighting throughout. The cased archways and choice of finishes added character and beauty to this wonderful space. 


With the help of our sub-contractor team we were able to create this beautiful award winning home that our clients absolutely adore. Thank you to our subs!

R&D Drywall

Hellenbrand Electric

Rockweiler Insulation

Brunsell Lumber & Millwork


Award Winning 1st Floor RemodelAward Winning 1st Floor Remodel Award Winning 1st Floor Remodel Award Winning 1st Floor Remodel Award Winning 1st Floor RemodelAward Winning 1st Floor RemodelAward Winning 1st Floor Remodel Award Winning 1st Floor Remodel Front Family Room Award Winning 1st Floor Remodel

To see more photos of our award winning designs, click here.


Tour Home 2014- Two Story Addition

After having to cancel our tour last year due to the large tree that had fallen on it, we were ecstatic to be showing the project this year at the National Association of the Remodeling Industry (Madison Chapter) Tour of Remodeled Homes!

The tour home featured a two story addition and was a whole house remodel. The addition houses a master suite on the second floor, a bright and open family room with adjacent mud room and powder bath on the first floor, and a full height music room on the basement level.

The homeowners wanted a design that offered high contrast, modern elements, and a restored historical interior. The house previously had ranch trim and slab doors, which were not original to the house. We revamped all of the trims to be a higher profile, simple design. This both compliments the historical style while working with the client’s modern tastes. We refurbished two doors from the garage, then ordered new doors to match the style of these original two panel doors. Archways in the open concept great room give added character and architectural details. The new modern kitchen has tons of storage space and is much more functional.

The exterior features a MoistureShield deck which is not only sustainable but very low maintenance. It only requires the homeowners to pressure wash once per year. You can read more about our journey with the exterior of the home in our recent blog post Colonial Curb Appeal Project in Madison, WI.

Thanks to all who visited! We had the most visited tour site of 2014!

To learn more about the most current Tour of Remodeled Homes, visit NARI of Madison’s website.


Tour Home 2014 Tour Home 2014 Tour Home 2014 Tour Home 2014 Tour Home 2014 Tour Home 2014 Tour Home 2014

To see more project photos, visit our New Homes & Additions page.


MoistureShield Sustainable Decking

With our latest deck project under construction, we’d like to put some information on our blog regarding our favorite decking system.

Over the past 3 years, we have built three decks out of MoistureShield Decking. Two of the three decks have been a two-tone design, with the border and skirt board in a contrasting color. MoistureShield is available is a variety of colors, creating a unique outdoor living space. Our clients are ecstatic with the finished look, from the colors to the perfectly mitered corners. The concealed clips allow for a seamless finish, with no screw holes on the finished surface. This makes for a beautiful, yet durable finished product that’s also easy to clean. MoistureSheild decking is also stain, fade, scratch, mold and mildew resistant. It’s designed to last a lifetime.

In addition to high performance and aesthetics, MoistureShield is also in line with the pricing of Trex deck systems. Our carpenters prefer the install on MoistureShield over Trex due to MoistureShield looking and feeling like wood (not plastic like feel/aesthetic like Trex). Furthermore, it has a marine rating, which lends itself to a longer lifetime. Most MoistureShield products have a limited lifetime warranty.

MoistureShield is also a very environmentally conscious company, with a highly sustainable manufacturing process.

Their parent company, Advanced Environmental Recycling Technologies, Inc. is a leading plastics recycler and manufacturer of green composite building products. MoistureShield has a total of 95% total recycled content  (38% post consumer, 57% pre-consumer). MoistureShield doesn’t cut down new trees to make its decking.

All things accounted for, we feel confident we’ve been supplying and installing the best of the best for our clients. Because of this, they’ve been loving the results. 

Contact us today to get a free estimate!

MoistureShield Decking

MoistureShield Decking

MoistureShield Decking

MoistureShield Decking

To see more project photos, visit our Sun Rooms & Decks page.


Colonial Curb Appeal Project in Madison, WI

When it comes to remodeling, a lot of homeowners overlook the exterior of their home and only focus on the interior. However, the exterior curb appeal of your home can make a huge difference to the overall value! 

After a recent update, the curb appeal of this colonial home has greatly improved. Aside from removing the 22 ton maple tree, we also added an overhang entry to the front door. The exterior took on a different color scheme- grays, white, and a punch of red in the front door. This added a much needed update to the curb appeal of the home.

A tree fell on the house in late May, just as we were about to finish up the exterior work. As a result, we had to stop everything, repair the roof, repair the siding (which included removing a few branches), and repair the interior where the tree had compromised the window and plaster work. The home was meant to be featured on the 2013 NARI Tour of Remodeled Homes. After the tree fell, we had to postpone the tour until the next year. 

Thankfully, the fallen tree didn’t harm the back deck. We used MoistureShield decking – the most low maintenance deck material on the market. In addition, it’s a very sustainable material and comes in a variety of colors. It’s marine-rated for boat docks, so our clients won’t have to deal with water damage to the deck. You can read more about MoistureShield decking in our recent blog post MoistureShield Sustainable DeckingA rain garden sits just beyond the deck to help control water run-off. Next year it should be in full bloom.

Although the fallen tree caused a longer than anticipated project, our clients are ecstatic with the new exterior of their home. We were able to show off their whole-home addition during the 2014 NARI Tour of Remodeled Homes. Check out our blog post Tour Home 2014- Two Story Addition to see more photos.

Curb Appeal Before: Front of house

Before: Front of house

Curb Appeal During: Tree damage

During: Tree damage

Curb Appeal After: Front of house

After: Front of house

To see more project photos, visit our New Homes & Additions page.


Creating a Basement Entertaining Space

These young and outgoing clients wanted a space for entertaining friends and coworkers.

It was always the couple’s dream to have a built-in seating booth in their basement. The basement is where they did a large amount of their entertaining – watching movies, playing board games, and relaxing with good company. Overall, they wanted a more functional space, making it easier to converse with guests.

On either side of the booth seat, there are cabinets for all of the couple’s games and drink coasters. The custom cherry table finishes the space off. The table pedestal was designed to allow for easy movement into the built-in seating area without hitting feet.

Entertaining Space Before

Before

Entertaining Space After

Entertaining Space After

We added a wet bar to the basement, complete with a bar sink and mini fridge. It’s a great space for the couple to mix drinks for company. The custom glass shelves beautifully display their collection of souvenir mugs and steins. In addition, the mirrors in the center of the bar back create a focal point.

Another space this couple used for entertaining was the kitchen. We had designed it years ago, but it was in need of a wine bar. We filled a blank wall with cherry cabinetry to match the rest of the kitchen. The wine bar is complete with glass doors and wine racks.

From the basement to the kitchen, this couple finally has all of the entertaining space they need!

 

To see more project photos, visit our Basements page.


Opening up a Small Kitchen in Madison, WI

This home came equipped with a very small kitchen.

The walls went all the way around this small kitchen, dividing the spaces between the living and dining areas and kitchen work space. This created inconvenience for the homeowners as they had to walk all the way around their kitchen in order to set food on their dining table.

Small Kitchen Before

Before

It was the home owners’ dreams to see the room opened up.

They decided on a plan for a kitchen with a peninsula at the end, next to their dining table. This would allow for very easy access into the kitchen from the front of the house as well as from the dining room and living room in the back of the house. We started demolition and “SURPRISE!”. The wall we were knocking out was supposed to be a supporting wall, but it had been torn out by previous home owners or was never equipped with the proper support. With some very creative engineering, the owner of A Better Home came up with a plan that would support the house without even touching our plans for the kitchen remodel. As a result, there isn’t even be a beam showing in the kitchen!

Small Kitchen After

After

We removed their side door and stoop from their kitchen space to gain more space for their refrigerator. The front of the kitchen now houses a small breakfast nook. It can also double as a place to work on bills and mail.

Small Kitchen After

Breakfast Nook

The owners decided on a natural stained cherry cabinetry, which just doesn’t ever seem to go out of style.

The counter tops they chose were a dark solid surface with copper flecks. They have a matte finish which is easier on the eyes. We had to vent the hood to the exterior through the floor joists and a cabinet. We built a back onto the cabinet so that the owner could see everything in the cabinet just by standing in front of it. In addition, it works as an excellent pantry and cupboard for measuring cups and spoons. The homeowner also added a microwave cabinet in the peninsula so that it was easily accessible but out of sight.

The cabinets around the sink area feature reeded glass, which is a glass type used at the time of the home’s construction. The simple shaker cabinet doors compliment their style and provide a timeless look. Furthermore, they lightened up the kitchen with a light back splash – cream subway tiles and milk glass mosaic.

Small Kitchen After

Upper Cabinets with Reeded Glass

To see more project photos, visit our Kitchens page.

 


Swapping Spaces in an old Colonial Home

This old colonial home lacked kitchen storage, efficiency, and yes, even a dishwasher!

With the basement door entering into the kitchen space, there wasn’t much room for improvement. The adjacent dining room’s entry into the living room broke the living room up. As a result, carrying groceries from the front entry to the kitchen was difficult.

swapping spaces before

Kitchen Before

 

Swapping spaces before

Kitchen Before

Swapping spaces before

Dining Room Before

After providing several ideas, the homeowners selected the option of swapping spaces!

We completely swapped their dining room space with their kitchen space and relocated the entry into the living room.

By moving the living room entry, the space went from awkward and broken up to unified and comfortable. The entry from the front door into the kitchen became a direct route, which helped greatly with groceries.

Swapping spaces after

Kitchen After

Along with swapping spaces, we also swapped windows and doors. We reused the large window from the old dining room in the new dining room space. We also moved the patio door down into the dining room so that the spacing around the dining table could be used as walkway. The dining room now feels open and spacious, while the kitchen was transformed into a U-shape with a peninsula and pantry.

Swapping spaces after

Open Kitchen and Dining Spaces

One obstacle we had to overcome was the soffit that had to stay in the ceiling where the plumbing above ran across.

Instead of just covering the soffit with drywall and calling it a day, we thought it would be much more visually interesting to put in cove lighting. By simply putting in a nearly rectangular soffit around the dining area, and putting up a piece of wood trim to hide the lighting, we transformed something awkward into something very attractive – now adding some drama to their beautiful old house.

Swapping Spaces after

Dining Room After

Swapping Spaces After

Cove Lighting in Dining Room

The kitchen provides all the appliances the home owners wanted – yes, they finally have that dishwasher!

Instead of angled corner cabinets, the couple chose some 90 degree corner cabinets with piano hinges that allow them to easily access all if its contents.

Swapping Spaces after

Updated Kitchen Storage

Swapping Spaces After

Updated Kitchen Storage

Large drawers store their pots and pans, and they enjoy several other storage features – tilt out trays, wine rack, pull out spice rack, and wire tray dividers. We encourage all our customers to put wire tray dividers into their refrigerator cabinets. Even vertically challenged people, such as this home owner, are able to reach into their refrigerator cabinet to get their cooking sheets, muffin tins, cooling racks, and light weight cutting boards without difficulty!

Swapping Spaces After

Kitchen Storage After

Swapping Spaces After

Kitchen Storage After

In the end, swapping spaces was the right choice for this homeowner. They now have a home they love. 

To see more project photos, visit our Kitchens page.


A Kitchen Face Lift with Gorgeous Granite

The homeowners of this project wanted to update their kitchen without completely ripping it apart. 

They had many goals for this project. First, replace the existing island with something sturdier. Also replace the existing counter tops with granite. Next, they wanted a casual seating area around the island for breakfast, game playing and watching TV. Adding in a beverage center would help with entertaining. Lastly, the homeowners wanted to add some pizzazz to the space to attract future home buyers and make the space look more finished. 

Granite Kitchen Before

Kitchen Before

Granite Kitchen Before

Kitchen Before

Granite Kitchen Before

Kitchen Before

We replaced the small island with a large island of contrasting color, complete with bar height breakfast bar, cabinets with drawers and roll out trays from Shiloh Cabinetry, as well as a statement peninsula of Titanium Granite for seating.

The pedestal support for the peninsula mimics the fireplace in the adjacent living room. In addition, the contrasting wood helps lighten the space up and makes the large island feel less bulky and more of a focal point.

Gorgeous Granite Kitchen After

Kitchen After

A transom stained glass panel was added in the opening facing the breakfast room which helped bring some color into the room that becomes a focal point. We added a shelf below it for placing art pieces and decor.

Gorgeous Granite Kitchen After

Transom Window with Stained Glass

We replaced an old desk area with a beverage center. We also ordered new custom built cabinetry to match the existing cherry kitchen cabinetry.

Gorgeous Granite Kitchen After

Beverage Center After

The floors were finished with UV finish – a finish that does not fade over time or become darker – instead the sun’s rays make it more durable, which was excellent for this family with a Wheaten Terrier.

Finally, we added back splash – travertine and a glass mosaic blend, which gave the space a more finished look.

Gorgeous Granite Kitchen After

Kitchen After

To see more project photos, visit our Kitchens page.


Basement Laundry and Bath Makeover

Our clients had a cramped and dark basement laundry and bath that needed improvement.

Their goals were to make the basement laundry room feel more spacious and comfortable for doing laundry tasks while improving the showering area and providing more bathroom storage for their lower level guest suite. Another goal was to add more overall storage to the space. 

Basement Laundry Before

Laundry Before

Basement laundry before

Shower Before

Basement Laundry Before

Bathroom Before

The existing walls closed the owner into a small dark hallway. We rearranged the washer and dryer and opened up the space by getting rid of walls and closet doors that separated the spaces. Now the bathroom is far more functional, with a brand new Kohler shower module and custom glass shower door as well as a convenient laundry area with great storage above. In addition, a large vanity with utility cabinet holds more cleaning supplies. It becomes very surprising that this brightened space is in the basement of the tri-level home.

Basement Laundry After

Laundry After

Basement Laundry after

After

The client chose warm green and brown earth tones for the room.

This gives the space a very updated yet relaxing feel which will be appealing to future home buyers. The custom glass door gives the shower a more polished look. These homeowners can now enjoy a more functional, easy to use area for years to come while providing their guests a nicer bathroom space. 

Basement Laundry after

After

Basement Laundry after

Custom Glass Shower Door

To see more project photos, visit our Laundry & Mud Rooms page or our Bathrooms page.


Victorian Charm Restored in an Old Home

This Victorian home has gorgeous woodwork – wainscoting, two fireplaces, paneled doors, built in wooden seating, and many decorative carvings.

When we entered the kitchen, however, we were shocked to see wood paneling, wallpapered soffits over their 1970’s cabinetry, and no beautiful Victorian woodwork. Everything stopped at the entrance to the kitchen. The homeowners, who love their hobby of a house, wanted to make the kitchen feel like it was original and beautiful like the rest of their home.

Victorian Before

Before

Victorian Before

Before

They had just replaced some windows, so those needed to stay. They also wanted an overall more functional space than what they had. First, we gutted out the entire kitchen and laid out the space to work with the windows and door openings where they were. The homeowners chose white casing and Dover White cabinetry, which was a common choice for older kitchens.

Victorian After

Victorian Kitchen After

Victorian After

Victorian After

Next, we relocated a pipe that was concealed within a soffit. As a result, the ceiling could again be full height like in the dining room and entry way.  With the new high ceilings, we had enough space to do stacked wall cabinets all the way to the ceiling.

Victorian After

Stacked Wall Cabinets

Victorian After

Undermount Sink with Tilt-out Tray

We found inspiration for all of the woodwork in the other rooms of the Victorian home.

We found egg and dart molding on their fireplace, crown molding to match their door molding, and an applique for their hood as well as corbels on their island that mimic the curvature in some carvings in the entry way. The new exterior door with an oval of glass  mimics the style of the front entry doors.

Victorian After

Victorian Kitchen After

Victorian After

Hood Detail

Lastly, the couple wanted an island that looked like a table so that their original wood floors would be more visible. They also wanted it to be a contrasting wood. We chose the birch wood and stain color found in an adjacent living room. In addition, our woodworkers put together some window casing to match the other side of the dining room entry. As a result, both spaces flow together seamlessly.

Victorian After

Island After

Victorian After

Added Storage in Island

Victorian After

Updated Window Casing

To see more project photos, visit our Kitchens page.

 


2011 Regional Award Winner: The Medieval Bath

2011 NARI Regional Contractor of the Year Award Winner: The Medieval Bath

Our Medieval Bath is an award winner! This is a very unique project and a pleasure to be a part of! It required innovation and creativity at every point throughout the project. To read further about the project, check out our previous post A Medieval Master Bath in Waunakee, WI.

Please enjoy our detailed entry:

Medieval Bath Medieval Bath Medieval Bath Medieval Bath Medieval Bath Medieval Bath Medieval Bath Medieval Bath Medieval Bath Medieval Bath Medieval Bath Medieval Bath Medieval Bath Medieval Bath Medieval Bath Medieval Bath Medieval Bath Medieval Bath Medieval Bath Medieval Bath Medieval Bath Medieval Bath Medieval Bath Medieval Bath Medieval Bath Medieval Bath Medieval Bath Medieval Bath Medieval Bath Medieval Bath

To see more project photos, visit our Award Winning Designs page.


Award Winner #2- Bathroom Under $30,000

We are very excited to share this award winner! 2011 NARI Contractor of the Year Award for a bathroom under $30,000.

In this project, we transform a small, cramped bathroom. The traffic flow into the bathroom had a bottleneck effect, so rearranging the layout was a must. Using the couple’s inspiration from French luxury hotels they have stayed at as well as matching their kitchen cabinetry style reminiscent of their Haywood-Wakefield furniture collection, we created a very unique little powder bathroom for their guests within a budget of $15,000. This bathroom is now a showpiece award winner!

Award Winner Before

Cramped Bathroom Before

Award Winner Before

Storage closet causing bottleneck effect at entry to bathroom

Award Winner Before

Cramped Bathroom Before

Award Winner After

New layout of bathroom

Award Winner After

Award-Winning Bathroom After

Award Winner After

Smaller storage cabinet

Award Winner After

Award-Winning Bathroom After

Award Winner After

Tile detail

Award Winner After

Toilet topper cabinet

Award Winner After

Tile Detail

To see more project photos, visit our Bathrooms page.


A Medieval Master Bath in Waunakee, WI!

Our latest project was a Medieval master suite.

Medieval Bookcase

Bookcase

When you walk into our client Doc’s house, you see Medieval knights in shining armor, books on castles and fantasy tales of times of castles, knights, kings, and queens. He has an entire collection of his family’s crests on the walls. He even has a book case with a rolling ladder! Seeing all of these unique possessions, we couldn’t help but consider making his new bathroom into a Medieval castle!

Now, you may be picturing something very gaudy, but we don’t do gaudy. With our top notch craftsmanship and a many creative solutions, we managed to create a bathroom suite that eludes a feeling of luxury and mystery… the way that castles should!

 

Medieval bath during

Installation of Shower

Doc has a bone disease that causes muscle pain. He wanted to reconfigure his master suite to allow for two therapeutic, spa-type fixtures from Kohler to help him relax his muscles. The Kohler shower came in a curved fixture that required more space. The whirlpool would be fitted in a similar position that the previous whirlpool was located, with a few adjustments to the plumbing.

As a single man in his recently purchased home, Doc realized that the bathroom didn’t suit his needs fixture wise on several counts.

He needed spa fixtures for muscle relaxation, but didn’t need a double sink or over sized walk-in-closet that was meant for a couple. The ability to take over the closet allowed us to reconfigure the entire floor plan into three separate rooms.

Medieval bath before

Bathroom Before

The first room is a powder room that can be closed off when guests need to use it. As a man who values his privacy, being able to close off his personal vanity and bath was a great improvement for his first floor bathroom suite.

Medieval floor plan

Proposed Floor Plan

Medieval Sink

Medieval Sink

You enter the master suite through a large exterior door with a speakeasy… preparing visitors for what is to come.

When you enter the powder bath, the first thing you see is the gargoyle fountain. Doc found an eaves spout tray in the shape of a gargoyle and we did some creative plumbing work to make it into a fountain with controlled water pressure to prevent splashes out of the gargoyle’s mouth.

 

The sink is a stone sink that Doc just fell in love with. The problem was, what do you put an odd-shaped, rustic stone sink on? Everything would look too clean cut and it wouldn’t match with his castle decor. We purchased some salvaged barn beams from the 1800’s, then stained, cut, and fit them around the plumbing. This gives the illusion that it’s supporting the heavy stone sink.

Medieval bath after

Gargoyle Sink

The second room you enter is a vanity room.

It’s complete with a trap door (access panel into ceiling), dungeon door (to linen closet), wood beams, marble-looking Corian, and stone floors as well as candlelight sconces and candle glow yellow walls.

Medieval Bath After

Medieval Bath After

Medieval Bath After

Medieval Bath After

The archway to the right of the vanity introduces you to room #3. 

This room is themed as the exterior of the castle. The plastered walls are painted a sky blue and the walls of this conceptual castle are covered in rock –a nice mix of manufactured and natural stone to give it texture. In addition, the rock forms crenelations around the turret formed around the curved bath fixture.

Medieval Bath After

Medieval Bath After

Medieval Bath After

Medieval Bath After

To the right of the shower is another door, called the dungeon window. It’s a heat vent as well as an access panel to the shower fixture. The flooring is transitioned into a conceptual drawbridge with chains dangling out of gargoyles at the top of the archway.

Medieval Bath After

Gargoyle Drawbridge

The drawbridge is made of a wood-looking tile that matches the other wood tile found in the other rooms. In addition, the water around the bridge is achieved through the use of muddy water-colored rock tile. Who wouldn’t want to watch the game in there?!

Medieval bath after

Drawbridge Floor Tile

The room is equipped with several other luxuries as well.

It has heated floor tile, a heated towel rack, and a few remote blowers for better ventilation.

As for the closet, we put a new walk-in closet that is suited for Doc’s needs. The linen closet (dungeon door) includes hangers for Doc’s work clothes so he can get ready in the morning more efficiently.

Finally, this job proved to be complex on many levels. It required innovation to overcome technical challenges, as well as creativity to resolve aesthetic and design criterion, and a bit of “what the heck, let’s try it!” This project also shows that we can take even the most conceptual design ideas and turn them into a luxurious reality. It’s a rare project that we feel privileged to have had the honor of working on.

Thanks for the honor, Doc!

To see more project photos, visit our Award Winning Bathrooms page.


A New Bathroom In A Very Old Home

Recently, we finished a new bathroom in an old Victorian home.

The owner of this home was tired of the look of the tub/shower module and wanted a tiled shower in the bathroom.

Bathroom Before

Bathroom Before

 

To our surprise during demolition, we found that years ago, a previous owner had sawn through all of the floor joists and many studs in the bathroom walls in order to get plumbing and HVAC through to the current locations. Definitely a case of “Do Not Try This At Home.” 🙂 We relocated the plumbing pipes and HVAC to restore structural stability.

Bathroom structural issues

Structural Issues

Once the structural issues were covered, it was on to creating a gorgeous main bath for the owner to enjoy.

To go with her original woodwork found throughout the home, the owner chose natural cherry cabinetry that would get richer with time, just as her house’s woodwork has. We also managed to strip her door on the bathroom side (previously painted white). We stained it to match the existing woodwork found throughout the house. The trim didn’t match the rest of the house, so we duplicated the trim that was on the other side of the door. This creates a space that looks more original to the Victorian home.

Bathroom After

Bathroom After

The colors of the cabinetry are also in the floor and shower tile, pulling everything together. We even found a paint color to match one of the colors in the glass mosaic.

The vanity wall is an accent wall. We kept the dark blue color on that one wall to maintain an open feeling. This creates a focal point at the sink. We also replaced the window that was in the shower with a waterproof window. Now the owner can enjoy a nice, cool breeze.

Shower After

Shower After

To see more project photos, visit our Bathrooms page.


Small Bathroom Turned Spacious

Along with their Craftsman kitchen remodel, this homeowner’s cramped, small bathroom was in need of a serious renovation.

The craftsman style home was built in the early 1900s and the small bathroom had its original mudset tile. The homeowners decided that they would like a walk-in shower rather than the cast iron tub that had existed. They were limited in counter top space to a tiny vanity and radiator cabinet.

Small bathroom before

Before

 

Small Bathroom After

After

The slate flooring pulls in colors from the walls and cherry vanity cabinet, creating a sense of flow throughout the room. Extending the counter top as a banjo top over the toilet gave these homeowners as much counter top space as possible.

small bathroom after

After

 

Small Bathroom after

Shadow Box

We replaced the radiator and its cabinet cover with a small wall radiator that is more energy efficient and space-saving. The homeowners found that they actually had extra space near the shower to place a small console table. It houses extra bathroom accessories as well as displays more of their artwork, including the shadow box we created as a Thank You present.

Small Bathroom Before

Exterior side of door

The woodwork that we carried into their Craftsman Kitchen was also carried into their bathroom.

The new window has obscure glass to match the original door and new shower door. Before the remodel, the interior side of the bathroom door had mismatched hardware and a board covering the recessed panel detailing found throughout the door. On top of that panel were several layers of white paint.

We managed to get the door stripped and re-stained to match the existing woodwork, bringing the old house character to a side of the door the homeowners had no idea had a hidden recessed panel.

Small Bathroom After

Door After

Since completion of their kitchen and bathroom project, these homeowners also tackled the 3-season porch on the front of their home. We completed the new sun room in April 2017. The result was a CoTY Award winning space! We also featured this beautiful home in the NARI Tour of Remodeled Homes in the spring of 2017. To read about their new Craftsman Sunroom check out our post Craftsman Sunroom-NARI Coty Award Winner.

To see more project photos, visit our Bathrooms page.


Craftsman Kitchen in an Early 1900’s Home

Inspired by their early 1900’s Craftsman home, this Craftsman kitchen carries the character and detailing over from the rest of the home.

We managed to change the functionality of the space–storage, flow, and work space–without adding an addition. The homeowners now have the Craftsman kitchen they’ve always wanted. 

Craftsman Kitchen Before

Before

Craftsman Kitchen

After

Craftsmanship Shown in Craftsman Trim

Craftsman Kitchen After

After

This home had unique trim designs that we had never seen before. In order to continue the beautiful woodwork through the newly updated kitchen, we had to order new mill work and match the stain to the existing trim in adjacent rooms. With hours of working on it, we managed to duplicate the trim.

Our highly-skilled woodworker paid close attention to detail as he finished off the beautiful base boards and window trim. The homeowners now enjoy their window sills as a place to display some of their mementos.

Craftsman Kitchen After

After

Craftsman Kitchen After

After

Craftsman Kitchen After

Storage Solution

Craftsman Kitchen After

Pull-out Spice Rack

Craftsman Kitchen After

After

Space Saving, Energy Saving

We added a great amount of storage space by replacing an unused counter top area and wall cabinets with full height pantries. The pantries are located along the main pathway to the back door. Due to their twelve inch depth, the pantries create a better traffic flow.

Craftsman Kitchen Before

Before

Craftsman Kitchen After

After

A wall mounted radiator that doubles as a coat rack is another space saving idea we used! Who wouldn’t enjoy warm coats in these Wisconsin winters? Now the radiator is away from the window where it was previously interrupting counter top space.

Craftsman Kitchen After

After

With all of the energy-saving products the home owners had installed, they earned a rebate through Energy Star for $750.

Craftsman Kitchen Before

Before

Craftsman Kitchen After

After

In addition to their kitchen remodel, the homeowners remodeled the small bathroom located behind the kitchen. Check out our post Small Bathroom Turned Spacious to see how it turned out!

Since completion of their kitchen and bathroom remodel, the homeowners also tackled the 3-season porch on the front of their home. We completed the new sun room in April 2017. The result was a NARI CoTY Award winning space! We also featured this beautiful home on the NARI Tour of Remodeled Homes in the spring of 2017. To read about their new sun room, check out our post Craftsman Sunroom- NARI Coty Award Winner.

To see more project photos, visit our Craftsman Style Kitchens page. 


2010 Contractor of the Year -Winner!

News:

2010 Contractor of the Year – Winner

Nov 5th. 2010 – Not Just Kitchens was awarded a Win for our entry of a basement remodel in the category of Interior Remodel under $100,000.  This competition is run by NARI (The National Association of the Remodeling Industry).  Remodeling companies enter projects for judging in 15 catagories representing baths, kitchens, basements, exteriors, etc..  We placed 1st in our category for a basement remodel featuring use of many salvaged architectural items.


Contemporary Madison Basement Remodel

When we first looked at this basement it was clumsy cluster of partially finished rooms, hideous blue paint, dropped light ceiling and a cold bathroom. The homeowners were looking for 1) a warmer, larger ¾ bath, 2) improved laundry facility, 3) 2 offices, 4) and brighter living space with the budget being apportioned similarly.

The project features a ¾ bath with heated floor tile, a 5’x3’ shower with two glass ‘walls’ and a generous vanity with 2 linen cabinets. The homeowners host a couple events for which friends come from around the states.  After the remodel, this is the only shower they want to use, even if they have to take a number.

We left the laundry ceiling unfinished to hold down cost and a preparation for a future first floor remodel. By spraying the structure black, we got wires, joists, and pipes to disappear from the view and the room creates a feeling of having no ceiling.  We divided an old bedroom in two to create the requested office spaces.

In the main living space we removed that awful dropped light ceiling, a feature of an 80’s remodel, and replaced it with a dozen can lights. But the big change came with the egress window.  We cut out the old small basement window to put in a 2’x4.5’ casement and – wow – it brings in so much sunlight it’s easy to forget we’re below ground. All the trim, doors, and stair rail were redone in natural birch, a light but warm wood.


1950′s Inspired Kitchen Transformation

A 1950’s Inspired Kitchen Transformation!

Attention to Detail – an old adage but oh so true for this project. The all-white 1980’s kitchen was an eye sore to the homeowners who have an impeccable taste and love to cook and entertain. Besides being a 1980’s disaster of a design, the space was barely functional.
The new kitchen is 1950’s inspired, with its unique arrow inlays in the tile, drop-shaped light fixtures, and soft curvy lines.

1950's Inspired Kitchen

1950’s Kitchen After

1950's Inspired Kitchen

1950’s Award Winning Design

To see more project photos, visit our Kitchens page.


Contemporary Madison Kitchen

Client wishes:

The homeowners were wishing for a open kitchen with the all the rooms integrated harmoniously with the rest of their house.  To start with, the home had a cramped kitchen, a formal dining room which was being used as quasi office, and a sunroom completely cutoff from the remainder of their house.  There was only one solution to creating more space and flow – we had to knock out walls.

The project features:

Once the space was opened up, the room began to feel better right away.  The kitchen features mostly base cabinets under quartz countertops. Portions of the counter form breakfast bar, facing the backyard, a bar sink and seating, and the main cooking space. The center wall cabinets are hung in suspension away from the ceiling to maintain the open spacious feeling, by use of hidden brackets and rods.  We used cherry for wood of the base cabinets and maple for the walls, which gives a sense of dimension and complements the stone fireplace wall in the adjoining living room.