Capitol Hill Remodel - The Tear Out

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Capitol Hill Remodel - The Tear Out

Continuing on with the recent kitchen.  The first day was preparing the site for removal of materials.  Since we are working with a home built in the 1920's, we chose a contractor that has the Lead Removal Certification.  If you are not familiar with it, take a look at this link.

The first part of the demolition and removal was to take samples of materials that will be touched or removed.  Lead was found in a few areas of old paint, so proper methods were followed in order to remove and properly dispose of the materials.  After that, the existing hardwoods in the dining room, entry hall and stairway were protected.  Several dust barriers were installed over doorways in the kitchen, hall and bedroom. 

Milynn is laying down the floor protection in the entry and dining room.  The dining room will become the temporary kitchen for the homeowner. 

 

We moved the refrigerator into the dining and the client set up a temporary "kitchen". 

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Capitol Hill Remodel - Behind the Walls

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Capitol Hill Remodel - Behind the Walls

And so it begins

And so it begins

The drywall has been torn away from the wall framing.  Based on the age of the home, this originally would have been lath and plaster.  The home went through a previous remodel, so the lath and plaster was replaced with drywall.  The lath and plaster is still evident on the walls of the dining room, as seen above.  Another discovery after removing the drywall was a heat supply running through the wall just to the left of the dining door.  Our new kitchen plan involved widening the door to the dining room, so this heat duct was right in the way!  It was important for the client to have that door wider, so the contractor figured a way to shift the heat duct over to the next bay of the framing.  In the photo below, we had a further discovery, but this was the good kind of discovery!  There was an empty space in the wall cavity, which now could be utilized for additional storage.  The kitchen would be considered a small kitchen, and has limited traditional pantry space.  So, this new discovery would become an additional pantry.  So, not all discoveries are bad!  We used this one to our advantage.

Here's the former bedroom / closet space that will become the new bathroom.  Notice the old shiplap subfloor!  A doorway from the old closet to the hallway gets closed in with new lumber.  

Here's the exciting part, which is also where our problem solving skills kick in.  After removing the cabinetry, the crew discovers ductwork that is running diagonally through the kitchen space. It took just a few minutes to figure out that the duct is for the laundry shute from the upstairs, transferring to the basement.   One good thing is that this wall in the new layout does not have cabinetry or appliances that will be impacted by the discovery.  As a designer, I wanted it to visually disappear.  After discussing with the contractor on the jobsite, we figured several options to address the issue.  The options were presented to the client, along with price estimates for each option. Of course, the more complicated approach is the more costly. 

 


 

Old Knob and Tube wiring that gets clean up by removal while the walls are open.  

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Capital Hill Remodel: Making Doorways and Framing Walls!

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Capital Hill Remodel: Making Doorways and Framing Walls!

The rough construction phase continues.  A window and door of the kitchen gets closed up and another window gets cut open to create a new door.  It was a remarkable experience to walk on the jobsite and see the guys just sawing through the wall framing and exterior siding to make the new doorway to the back deck.  This new doorway will make such a huge improvement for the kitchen - a new and easier access from the parking area of the home as well as a better flow from kitchen to the deck for entertaining.  You will notice the electrical service that feeds into the house is way too close to the new door.  This will be relocated to a new strike during the construction.

While the kitchen is receiving the deconstruction of the window to create the door, the bathroom area starts to take shape by framing up walls.  

The openings look pretty wide for the moment as the doorways to the bath and closet will be pocket doors.  The bath will be to the left, which is closer to the existing drain lines and vent stacks so we can tie into them to connect the plumbing.  Below is a closer look at the shower wall framing.  The bath is taking shape!

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Capital Hill Remodel: Repiped, Rewired and Redirected

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Capital Hill Remodel: Repiped, Rewired and Redirected

All the trades have finished the rewiring, repiping and redirecting of the heat supply.  The new recessed cans are set in between the joists.  Plumbing has been updated and readjusted to fit our new layouts.  Outlet and switch boxes have been set.  In a couple of the lower photos, you will see the new plumbing for in the wall of the powder room.  Our initial intension was not to do any work in the powder room.  But since we needed to access inside the wall for new plumbing supplies, drains and vents, we took the opportunity to make some minor adjustments in the powder room.  It transformed from awkward to comfortable.  Next will the drywall installation and getting ready for the pretty stuff ~ cabinetry and tile!

 

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Capital Hill Remodel: Interior Takes Shape

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Capital Hill Remodel: Interior Takes Shape

The interior starts taking shape again once drywall is installed.  The above photo is in the kitchen, before the drywall has been taped and mudded.  You can see the angled portion coming down from the ceiling.  This is the surprise of the laundry shute we found earlier in the demolition phase.  The client chose to just keep it in it's original location and have us box it in.  They felt it added to the quirky nature of old houses that have gone through a few remodels since being built almost 100 years ago. 

Below, is the bathroom after drywall, and you see the tape and mud in production.  This is the time to expect some extra dust on the job site!  The sanding and smoothing of the mud creates a fine dust.  

This shot is of the shower area.  The drywall stops at the shower area, and that will be soon covered in Hardiebacker board and waterproofed in preparation for the tile.  

Below is back in the kitchen.  The wood floor installer, Mike with Start To Finish Fine Hardwoods, has started laying the white oak planks.  These will later be stained and finished with a matte topcoat.  This floor is being installed wall to wall, and will go under all the cabinetry.  

 

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Cooking Omelettes on the Jenn-Air Chrome Infused Griddle

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Cooking Omelettes on the Jenn-Air Chrome Infused Griddle

I just attended a Designer’s Symposium at the World of Whirlpool in Chicago.   The focus was on the Jenn-Air brand.  The symposium was specifically designed for experienced designers with in the Interiors and Kitchen & Bath industry.  I was flattered to have been invited!  On our first day of training, Chef Ann was teaching us about the wonders of the griddle feature on the Jenn-Air gas cooktops and ranges.  Now, I have been to all the major competitor brand's manufacturing and training facilities in the appliance industry.  I have already formed the decision that I would love a griddle application or tepanyaki grill in my dream kitchen.  So, when Chef Ann mentioned “chrome infused”, I was intrigued.  Thoughts ran to chrome details on sexy motor bikes…..It’s a Harley for me that gets my motor bike passion revved up.   Then, I thought of food with the “infused” bit of the statement.  Garlic infused olive oil, blood orange infused vodka, tarragon infused vinegar…..well, you get where I am going.  So, to hear “chrome infused stainless steel” for the griddle, got my thoughts racing.  What does that mean!?   Well, simply put, the surface of stainless has some porosity and the chrome fills those pores, which makes for a truly non stick surface without having some sort of coating applied to the top.  Okay, I was a little skeptical, because even the best seasoned cast iron skillet sticks to some degree, especially with certain foods.  So, the demonstration goes, straight up egg poured onto the griddle surface.  Dry.  No butter, no oil, nothing added to the egg.  Yeah, right.  Let’s see this.  The egg cooked up and the cheese and sauted veggies were added to call the demonstration an omlette.  Chef Ann took the spatula and flipped the egg over to complete the roll of the omlette and easily slid it off the griddle with hardly a spec of anything left behind.  Okay, maybe a shred or two of cheese fell out as it was being plated.  I was amazed.  So, I am upping the ante on my future dream kitchen.  The griddle needs to be the chrome infused Jenn-Air. 

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