Even though this kitchen was only about 10 years old, it had very quickly become dated and suffered from a serious lack of storage space – one of the most important things buyers look for. The result was that the countertops had become cluttered with appliances and day-to-day items. When the client was asked what bothered them the most about the original design, what we heard loudest was that two people working together in the kitchen was next to impossible. They were landlocked in the peninsula layout.
Our design did away with the peninsula, and instead provided a 10 foot long island with ample space between the two work surfaces for people to comfortably pass each other. The bulkheads were removed which allowed for cabinet storage right to the ceiling, plus large, deep pantry units were added. Every inch of the island cabinetry was used for storage where appliances weren’t filling a space, so lack of storage is no longer an issue. Built-in wall oven and microwave combination reduced visual clutter, and a counter-depth refrigerator gave the appearance of it being built into the pantry space. The exhaust fan is nicely hidden by a lovely custom beadboard treatment.
The stone tile backsplash quietly blends the mix of lacquered and wood finish architectural details. Counter clutter was brought under control by creating storage areas for small appliances with high quality hinged doors to hide them behind.
The island provides an eating area at the opposite end from the sink, and is also a great place for doing computer work. To make that an easier proposition, we installed a power strip into the countertop, integrating it into the design. The strip can be raised for use with appliances and equipment, and can be tucked out of the way by lowering the strip into the counter. It flows well and looks great.
This is now a sleek, modern work space, making this a truly wonderful kitchen for our clients and their family to enjoy.
Cranbrooke Bathroom Re-Design
When our client called us in, her main concern was that she hadn’t been able to use the shower in her ensuite bathroom for many years. Although they had had the issue dealt with by several contractors over the years, every time they started using the shower again on a regular basis, they would eventually have a leak resurface, breaking open the dining room ceiling below. They had had this repaired so many times in so many ways in the previous 25 years that they had given up using the shower altogether.
To make sure no one ran water in the shower by accident, they posted a sign on the door warning of the problem.
The client identified other issues with the existing bathroom design as being an unwanted bathtub and bidet that were taking up important space.
Our new design implemented all the must-haves for our client, which included: heated floors, a towel warmer, higher vanity and sink height, a separate make-up area and bulk storage. We used a large format porcelain tile on both the floors and shower walls to keep the space open and seamless.
This shower seat is a step up from most, being a slim profile fold-down version of brushed aluminum and Brazilian walnut. A chrome niche was installed to handle an array of shampoos and shower products. The curbless shower with linear drain design was chosen so that users will always have easy entry and water will quickly drain away.
This is now a very usable shower and a very functional ensuite bathroom that meets and supercedes all of the client’s needs and wants.
Richmond Hill Great Room
This Executive Townhouse was cramped, and contained rooms that weren’t being used because they were simply out of the way. The homeowners had done the best they could to utilize the space in an efficient way, but over time the walls seemed to close in on them. Because load-bearing walls were involved, we called in a Structural Engineer to help devise a plan that allowed us to take down walls, and open the walls between the den and dining room. The result was a new Great Room that was comfortable for day-to-day use and spacious for entertaining.
To hold the weight of the second floor, beams were installed in the ceiling, and a steel post supported them in a strategic place in the room. Right beside the post was the cold air return for the second floor, which couldn’t be disconnected and removed. In order to hide structural and mechanical components, a minimalist column was fabricated, and a decorative finish was added by applying a stone façade halfway up the column. Instead of having an unattractive creation sticking out in the middle of the room, it became a functional and attractive architectural element that was connected to the space.
The fireplace mantle and surround were removed and a shallow wall built with a recess for the flatscreen TV, which was installed at a comfortable height for viewing. Applying the same stone façade as on the column connected the two sides of the room. This transitioned the space from traditional to clean and contemporary.
Waymount Ave., Richmond Hill
Our clients wanted to update their kitchen, without spending the money that would be required to replace it all. The easiest way to achieve that was to update the appliances and surfaces. We recommended that they install new granite countertops, a tiled backsplash and stainless steel appliances. The cupboards, themselves, were in good condition; otherwise, we would have recommended they be professionally painted in order to give a facelift. These few changes added a classy feel to a heavily used area of the home.
Builders usually add large format mirrors in their bathroom finishes. Here we framed the mirrors to define them and set them off against the vanities. In an ensuite bath, they add an element of elegance. New light fixtures were installed above the mirrors to replace the builder’s grade lights that had been there since construction.
This is a lovely, bright family room just off the kitchen, but it had seen the addition of inherited furniture pieces that held precious memories. To create a more cohesive feeling in this room, we removed excess pieces and repositioned the remaining furniture to allow for comfortable entertaining and ease of traffic flow.
Bogert Ave., Toronto
This home was a new-build from the ground up, leaving the foundation in its original layout.
The Master Bedroom was a very large room with nice details in the finishings that we played off of in our room design.
The modern style of vanity used in this new build gives the bathroom an airy feel.
This beautiful built-in wall unit and wainscotting makes one think of a home office, but since today’s families are looking for main floor areas for gathering and relaxing, we wanted the room to reflect the multi-uses it can offer.