Helena Residence: Final Reveal

midcentury modern bathroom remodel

midcentury modern bathroom remodel

We have a fun reveal to share with you today! Would you believe this gorgeous bathroom is in a basement? Unexpected, right? This entire project focused on the renovation of a seriously dated 70’s style basement. While there were some major shortcomings with it’s “before” style (did you check out that post?) , there was no shortage of space. This project included overhauling 3 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, a laundry room, and family room. The whole place now feels fresh, bright and fun, while nodding to it’s midcentury modern roots.

consistency is key

We wanted to keep this basement feeling as spacious as it actually was. To do that, it was important to use the same key materials as much as possible. As you look around the space and see a continuation of the same material, it reads as a continuation of the room. For all of the bedrooms, family room and hall, we used a white oak vinyl floor. Walnut was used on all of the main cabinetry. We carried the same wall color throughout, except for in the kids rooms. In each bathroom, we installed the same black hexagon tile floors. However, it was important for the bathrooms to have some differences while still being cohesive.

black hex tile with oak flooring

walnut cabinet with black floors

kids’ bathroom

The kids’ bathroom is of course my favorite. We wanted an elevated yet playful aesthetic, and the Fireclay diamond-shaped tile offered exactly what we needed. Besides the mirror and lighting, this tile was the only thing we changed to make the two bathrooms feel unique. I love how it looks with the black fixtures! Paired with a crisp white quartz counter, it keeps the space feeling calm and sophisticated.

green backsplash tile in bathroom

Throughout the basement, we stuck with two metal finishes — matte black and satin brass. While there are lots of way to mix and match metals, our guide for this design was as follows: we paired satin brass hardware anywhere we had a walnut cabinet, and matte black was used for all plumbing fixtures. Beyond that, we had some flexibility for fun combinations, like the black and brass bubble lights over the mirrors.

modern black bathroom faucet

custom modern bathroom vanity

How gorgeous is this view from their daughter’s room over to that bathroom!? I am totally in love with the softness of the blush pink wallpaper paired with the bold bathroom.

girls bedroom with pink wallpaper

black hexagon tile and white oak

guest bathroom

The second bathroom would be the primary bathroom used when hanging in the family room, as well as for guests. We wanted a clean, bright look in here while keeping with the modern accents of walnut and black finishes. We made a few adjustments to the layout in order to achieve a much larger walk-in shower. The full glass enclosure keeps the space feeling airy and clean. With the new layout, we ended up with some unused corner space. We planned for walnut floating shelves to store towels, toiletries, and other items for guests to use as needed.

modern bathroom with floating shelves

floating walnut shelves

black hexagon tile in shower

family room

The fireplace design is hands-down one of my favorite parts of this project. We knew exactly what we wanted, and while it took some trial and error to get the finish right (among other details), it’s now looking so stunning. The subtle variation of shades of black is imperfectly perfect and I love the high contrast to the custom walnut cabinets. The lines of the satin brass hardware on the cabinets are sleek and just as importantly, feel so great ergonomically, too. They are definitely ranked in my top three favorite hardware pieces I’ve ever used. And yes, I take mental notes of these things.

black fireplace surround

walnut cabinetry with brass hardware

And that’s a wrap! Be sure to take a look at the “before” photos if you want a blast from the past, as well as some of our favorite milestones from construction in our progress post. If you like what you see and have a project of your own that you would like to discuss, we’d love to hear from you! Check out our services and let’s chat!

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Helena Residence: Progress Update

black hex tile with oak flooring
black hex tile with oak flooring

As I mentioned in the last post (with the before shots of this project), this project actually took place last summer! We wrapped up in the Fall and just last month got to go do some styling and photographs. All this to say, our “progress” blog post is a bit delayed here! While shuffling through my archived project folders on my computer, I counted over 20 projects (big and small) that have never seen the internet. So hey, on the bright side, we made it here today!

Over on Instagram, I’m consistently sharing story posts of site visit updates as they happen. It takes a bit more time to prepare the photographs for our blog, but it’s so fun to look back at projects on these posts to really see everything from start to end without the other distractions of social media. We’ve used this blog a bit like our project journal, and we hope you enjoy diving into the details of your favorite projects here.

demolition begins

The Helena Residence was pretty straightforward as far as demolition goes. We weren’t tearing apart tons of walls to change layouts, it was mostly just cosmetic changes. Some of the original finishes were so dated though that it really felt great to see those pulled away and have a fresh slate to work with.

The two bathrooms were probably the most labor intensive. They were fully gutted and one had some minor adjustments to the layout, which meant moving some plumbing around.

tile preparation & installation

It was nice to see the bathrooms start pulling back together with sheet rock and cement board. It’s always a good sign that finishes will be going in soon and the real transformation is going to begin.

I loved the transitions throughout the bathrooms. From the large black hex to the mini for the shower pan, and the large hex to the white oak vinyl, they were some beautiful pairs.

the arrival of cabinetry

When cabinets arrive, it’s a domino effect of good things. Counters can then get installed, along with backsplash, plumbing fixtures, lighting and hardware. These bathrooms started pulling together very quickly and it was an exciting time!

We also finally got to see the laundry room start to transform. It didn’t quite make sense to do the walnut cabinetry in the laundry room, so we went with a stocked grey color and paired it with black hardware. My favorite detail to plan was the waterfall drop in the counters for a very sleek detail. This change of height was necessary due to the taller height of the washing machine and dryer, but the lower height needed for comfort at the sink.

the fireplace transformation

One of the most satisfying parts was seeing the fireplace get cleaned up. The hearth on this thing was multi-layered and we had to pull it all out before we could frame over the brick. While many midcentury houses look incredible with painted brick fireplace surrounds, we wanted something much sleeker here. We went through a pretty extensive sampling process to get the look just right. And then more trial and error on the actual fireplace to make sure it had the perfect amount of variation (or lack thereof, which was difficult to achieve) for our clients.

This process was discouraging at times, sometimes to the point of questioning if we should just paint it. I’m so glad we held strong because the finished result is gorgeous. Custom walnut cabinets were added to the side for media storage as well as an area for games, toys, etc.

the final details

Mirrors, lights, hardware, and furnishings… these pull a space together and it’s always so exciting to watch the tiniest things make the biggest impact. I love hearing from clients about their experiences and reactions to their new environment. When I found out about the joy and twirling that happened when this little girl saw the wallpaper in her new bedroom, my heart just about exploded. Creating the backdrop of someone’s life where their memories will be made is the biggest honor.

Be sure to check back soon for the final reveal of this modern gem!

If you have a Spring or Summer project on your mind, be sure to contact me here! It’s time to start planning your design and booking a contractor to meet that timeline! You can contact me or book online here.

Helena Residence: “Before”

walnut cabinet with brass hardware
walnut cabinet with brass hardware

We recently had the opportunity to return to a project that we finished last year to take some photos. While I’m so excited to share the final reveal, I never do so without showing where it all started. This is a gorgeous midcentury home that our clients had just acquired. We knew we were in for a real treat! You just never know what kind of gems you will find in an older home. Take a scroll down memory lane with us!

a wrongly placed farmhouse style

I say farmhouse, but honestly, I’m just not sure what happened here. When you first walk down the stairs to the basement, you are greeted with several chunky posts and beams, complete with mosaic tiled “shelves.” They were purely aesthetic, but just not an aesthetic that fit with the midcentury vibes the home longed to return to. The brick fireplace had so many layers and levels of design, it was quite busy and just a major beast. The storage next to it was obviously great and convenient but again did nothing for this major focal point opportunity. We were excited to tear it all out and design something bold yet clean here.

dated brick fireplace
brick fireplace with large hearth
LAUNDRY ROOM GOALS

As you walk from the family room down the hall, you eventually run into the biggest blast from the past that I’ve ever seen. And I’m no stranger to original midcentury homes! In fact, it’s where my career all started when working in Denver. I imagine at one point, this was the most stylish laundry room and maybe the most fun for those who enjoyed hallucinogenics. It doesn’t take long in this space to feel like you may have taken a few yourself. The green and yellow on every surface was so overbearing. But seriously, I was in awe over it, in the worst possible way! We like to have fun with these kinds of situations.

70s laundry room
70s laundry room
yellow and green laundry room
bedrooms that are refreshingly boring

After seeing the laundry room, I honestly wasn’t sure what to expect for the rest of the basement, as we were just getting started. To my surprise, the rest of the rooms were refreshingly boring and pretty darn easy to take care of with the remodel. With some new doors and trim, updated light fixtures, a lot of paint, and new windows, they’d be as good as new.

outdated bedroom with dark woods
outdated bedroom with dark built-ins
the half-done bathrooms

There were two bathrooms that would be gutted during this project. Both appeared to have been partially updated at some point. My favorite part of midcentury homes is guessing what color the plumbing fixtures will be and adding it to the long list of colored sinks, toilets, and tubs I’ve seen. I’m also thinking I should start a collection of wallpapers from these renovations! Unfortunately I’ve already missed out on tons of amazing opportunities for collecting these.

Anyway, the first bathroom had a very small shower stall, which was the biggest complaint for our clients. This is a guest bathroom that gets used very frequently, so they wanted it to be a more comfortable size. It was the only part in the basement that we needed to explore a different layout!

The next bathroom would be the kid’s bathroom; the perfect Jack & Jill suite and I wanted to make it extra special for them. Again, mostly just cosmetic changes would be needed. However, I did want to remove the partial wall to make the space feel a tad bigger.

I’ve been filtering through my project archives and it’s been so fun to look back at this project! It’s been almost a year from when I met these wonderful clients. I’m so excited to share the final reveal, but first keep an eye out for the progress post, coming soon!

If you have a Spring or Summer project on your mind, be sure to get in touch! It’s time to start planning your design and booking a contractor to meet that timeline! You can contact me or book online here.