Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Remodeling Update: Lars's & Anders' Bathroom Granite

So, Happy New Year, everyone!  Aside from a nasty cold that hit me Christmas Eve and is just starting to wane, I had a wonderfully relaxing Christmas and New Year's at home with my family.  My idea of relaxing might be different than yours, though.  My kind of rest & relaxation involves demolition and remodeling progress!

Tile Collection came to install granite countertops in our boys' bathroom vanities on December 29th.  I got a fantastic deal on these because the vanities were small enough to be cut out of remnants left from other customer's projects, and my granite fabricator charges the same clearance square foot price on all scrap pieces regardless of how expensive the stone was as a full slab.  It's a great way to upgrade secondary baths on a budget, but you have to be flexible about your stone selection.  Doing a stone fireplace surround would be another project where you could get an amazing deal using remnants.

Lars and Anders have one of those partially-shared en suite bathrooms commonly referred to as a Jack and Jill Bath.  They have a shared enclosed room housing the toilet and tub/shower, but they each have their own separate vanity that opens directly into each of their bedrooms.  Because the vanities are so visible as soon as you enter the bedrooms, and there isn't even a door to close, I deliberately selected Pottery Barn Kids bedroom furniture in Rustic Sun Valley Honey because it's so similar to their bathroom cabinetry, to lessen the jarring "Why is there a bathroom sink in this bedroom?" feeling that I was getting before.  I've never been a big fan of the "cultured marble" plastic countertops with integrated sinks and the chrome/brass faucets, but my primary objective in upgrading the countertops and fixtures was to dress up the vanities and ease the transition between the comfortably furnished bedrooms and the stark, utilitarian bath area.

Here's Lars's vanity on the morning of December 29th, with the granite installer disconnecting the plumbing before removing the old countertop and sink:

Those orange and blue squares on the wall were just paint colors I was auditioning.  They will get covered by wallpaper.

Here's what Lars's vanity looked like a few hours later, with his Poseidon granite countertop and new Kohler undermount sink:

...and here it is the next day, after Bernie installed the new Delta faucets and reconnected the plumbing.  We had replaced the towel bars, vanity lights and cabinet knobs awhile ago.  Doesn't that Poseidon granite look amazing?  This stone is in the top tier "Customer's Choice" pricing category, but because we used a remnant we got it for less than what we would have spent on the least expensive entry-level granite.

Here is Anders' vanity right before the new countertop was installed:

...and here it is after:

Anders' granite is called Golden Splendor, although when he heard that Lars's was called Poseidon, he insisted that his granite needed to be called Zeus.  Although it doesn't have quite the dramatic movement of the Poseidon, I chose the Golden Splendor of Zeus granite for Anders because he is getting a bold, primary colored geometric wallpaper in his vanity area and I wanted to make sure the stone wouldn't compete with that.  Lars's wallpaper is a bright orange textured paper, so it's okay for his granite to be more involved.

Here's Anders' vanity with the faucet installed:

Can you see those silvery mica flecks in the granite?  It's really pretty in person, just subtler than Lars's.

Bernie's office is in a secondary bedroom and it has a private en suite bath with a tiny little vanity.  I've arranged with my granite company to save one of the larger pieces of my Baltic Brown kitchen countertop and recut it for this little vanity.  Although it looked like Baltic Barf in my kitchen, this stone actually complements the more contemporary, masculine feel of Bernie's office nicely, and it looks great with the brown knobs I put on his cabinet, the paint color, and even the existing tilework in the adjacent shower.  I'll just give you a little before shot of that one.

I feel a little less wasteful knowing that at least some of the original granite will be reused.  Plus, it will be fun to be able to say "...And this is what the original kitchen countertops looked like when we first moved in."

 Meanwhile, since these pictures were taken, my wallpaper installers have been busily working in the kids' bathrooms, and they should be finished by the end of today.  Bernie has already started in on the carpentry aspect of our little kitchen remodel project, and that's looking amazing as well.  The granite guy came out to do the kitchen templates this morning, and we're scheduled to approve the layout of the templates on our slabs this Friday. 

I highly recommend asking your granite fabricator about approving your layout in person prior to cutting even if they don't suggest it, by the way, especially with granites like these that can have so much variation of color and pattern from one part of the slab to another.  I could have had them move the template over a few inches to the right and Lars's countertop would have been primarily black, for instance.  There's no way the guys at the fabrication plant can read your mind and know which parts of the stone you like best and which parts you'd like to minimize unless you go there in person and make your preferences known!

I'll try to post another update in a day or so; right now, I've got to get back to the master bedroom drapery design that I'm working on for a client.


Janice the Manice said...

I really, really like your choices for the boy's bathroom. I especially like how they complement one another but are still decidely different, just like my little nephews' personalities. I can't wait to see your choice in wallpaper, as I know it all will be tied in perfectly. This is the "House of the Rabbit" after all.

Rebecca Grace said...

Thanks, but if Anders has anything to say about it, ours is the House of the Frog!