Keen readers may recall Michelle & Simone's remodel project, a combination kitchen overhaul, master suite creation, and unification of two apartments. I've been remiss in not posting updates on that project more often: the last photos on this page are of bare studs, but believe me we haven't been idle. Here are some more recent images, soon to be followed by current ones.
First, the exterior. Nearly midway through the interior projects, we increased the scope of work by removing vinyl to reveal the house's original siding. After making repairs to squirrel-eaten cornice returns and re-glazing windows, we and our painters, M&R Painting, removed all the old lead paint (being as much in compliance with RRP rules as possible in a Louisiana July). The house is in the final stages of prep for a new coat of paint and the addition of operable shutters on the front. Oh, and we also removed the door on the right hand side, replaced it with a window, and added another window above it.
Jackson and I are adding the final pieces of tile on the tub deck. The orange on the floor is a ballyhooed, possibly over-sold, possibly genius material called Ditra-mat. (www.schluter.com/)
We've used it on numerous tile jobs, putting faith in the material because it is both German and expensive. Therefore it must do its job, right? I should confess that I suffer a form of neurosis regarding tile floors. I'm not comfortable with standard practice. We added a plethora of reinforcing blocks in the framing, a layer of cement backer board, a high-end Swedish leveling cement, plus the Ditra-mat. I hope to report in two hundred years that the tile is holding up just fine. I'll admit there is an unfortunate consequence to all those layers. The tile floor is now an inch taller than the floors in adjacent rooms.
This is the shower, nearly tiled, and undergoing a second water test before having the tile finished. We plugged the drain, filled the shower floor with water, marked its level, and left it alone for a day. Tiled showers too often develop leaks, which quickly causes the need for major, expensive repairs. We like to be extra-sure that leaks aren't present from the beginning. Then, when completing a project, we bombard the homeowners with reminders to check regularly for cracks in the grout, and to deal with any cracks immediately -- just in case.
This is a view from the hallway into the master bedroom. The differing floor color is a result of us re-laying the section of floor on the right. Where the lighter colored floor on the left is used to be the hallway wall, which we removed to add about forty square feet to the bedroom.
Finally, the kitchen-slash-storeroom. It's an embarrassing mess in this photo, but I include it for the sake of contrast. We had the cabinets installed yesterday by Sexton Cabinets.