Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Janice's Bathroom: Before & After Photos





Receiving after photos  from E-Design clients is one of the most exciting things I find in my inbox, and the sneak peeks I was seeing of this particular particular bathroom reno had me eagerly wanting to see more.  It didn't disappoint, in fact when I did see the finished space I was so impressed with how well Janice and her husband had implemented their design plan that I was longing to see it in person.  Since they live in Toronto, last summer while Janice was still on maternity leave I took the opportunity to meet her and the beautiful new bathroom in person.  I brought my camera and also a small assortment of flowers, so just a couple of vases and few minutes later I started snapping.  The room has wonderful daylight and aside from the fresh blooms, the photos I took below are exactly what the room looked like when I walked in I only wish I could share with you how it felt...it sounds corny or cliche to say 'it was like a breath of fresh air' but it really was like that.



The matt finish of the freestanding tub was one of my favorite things, like honed stone that compels you to touch it,  truly gives the tub a modern sculptural quality.





One of the 'bespoke' features of the bathroom was this custom designed and built walnut vanity, its clean contemporary lines, cararra marble counters and vintage style faucets make a classic and elegant statement.  The lines of the walnut grain and warm tones of the wood are stunning details on their own, no further embellishment needed.



A marble mosaic floor tile of simple small squares has a wonderful textural impact in the space.  The simplicity and expanse of little squares gives this timeless material a modern vibe. 



The walls were finished with panel moulding and chair rail.  A nod to the historical character of the century old house.  I adored Janice's milk glass vase.



A modern chandelier of pear shaped glass makes the room sparkle.



Double sinks and wall sconces.  The marble mosaic creates a wonderfully multi-tone effect that adds movement and interest without adding fussy with borders and accent tiles.   Janice is still on the hunt for a cart or table and a comfy stool to put beside the tub for bath time, but she has a charming vintage bentwood chair she uses in the meantime (sorry not seen in these pics).  




A walk-in glass enclosed shower, with classic white subway tile keeps the space bright and spacious. The modern loo pairs well with the equally clean lines of the soaker tub.


The end result achieved what Janice was hoping to, a classic bathroom that's not too traditional and not too modern but a well balanced mix of both.  With a use of quality materials and simple classic details this bathroom will have stylish appeal for many many years to come.  

Thank you Janice for welcoming me into your home, even though I felt I knew you already it was such a pleasure to meet you and your adorable Luca in person. xo   

For a look at the before and after plans check out my previous post here.

For more information about E-Design services for your home please check out my E-Design website www.thedesignshop.ca




Room Design & All Photos by:  Carol Reed


Monday, February 24, 2014

E-Design Bathroom: Before & After Plan




When Janice contacted me regarding her bathroom reno a couple of years ago, she was in the same predicament as most who reach out with inquiries to me.  Her and her husband, who live in a century old victorian in downtown Toronto, had been planning on renovating their main bathroom for quite some time.  She had the budget in mind and a contractor lined up but they didn’t have any plans or specifics to share with him.  They had some ideas in their head about what they wanted but ideas that they just weren’t sure about. That’s were I came in. Or should I say, that’s when Janice’s bathroom arrived in my in-box and we began the e-design process.

Here’s a look at the floor plan before the reno.  This main family bathroom and laundry room are located on the second floor, in the middle section of the house.  Typical of Victorian row houses of this period, the house is long and narrow.

Bathroom Floor Plan - Before

I imagine at one time this used to be a smaller bathroom and a bedroom and then sometime in the 80's somebody converted a bedroom and moved the laundry upstairs.   In any case, both the laundry and bathroom were in dire need of updating and improvement.  The main objective Janice wanted to achieve was a larger bathroom to accommodate 2 sinks and a separate tub and shower.  Her initial idea/request for the re-design was to remove the wall between the rooms and combine everything into one large shared space. 

There's too many reasons to list here why I didn't think combing the two rooms into one was the best option; for practicality - the noise and smell of laundry, soaking, hang drying etc...not to mention the enormous square footage of the space would make it too costly to finish to the level she wanted to achieve in her bathroom.  Also in my opinion deleting the separate laundry room for a shared bathroom would be a downgrade to the home not an upgrade.  So I worked up a few different layout options for her with the intent of keeping the two individual rooms.  Here's a look at the final plan.


Bathroom Floor Plan - After

After several back and forths this was unanimously declared the winning layout.  A new larger bathroom with double vanity, separate tub and walk-in shower and a separate laundry room which they agreed would be so much more practical and appropriate for the house than having it combined with the bathroom.  The window locations worked best for each room by flipping the laundry room and bathroom locations (and also means the laundry room no longer backs on to the baby's room).  But even in flipping the rooms the new layout was able to utilize a lot of the existing plumbing locations.  In addition to this layout I also created a budget for them based on the new plan which confirmed their initial budget just wasn’t going to be enough to achieve their goals. This was an enormous help in making sure they were properly prepared for the costs involved before moving ahead with the project or making any purchases. 

Vanity Elevation Options

I provided Janice with three different vanity wall mirror and lighting options. She had her own source for custom cabinets so I was able to design the vanity to fit the space.


Wall Panelling Elevation
The design plans included two different wall treatment options and Janice opted for this one which is a wainscot treatment created from panel moulding.  The elevations provide her with all the dimensions needed for installing the moulding (the moulding specs and sizes were included but have been omitted from this copy).

Janice and her husband are experienced DIY'ers who have completed many projects around their house which Janice blogs about on her popular blog Life Begins at Thirty Right?.  Due to the extensive nature of this reno she was nervous about making mistakes and wanted the reassurance of expert advice.  She does enjoy being hands-on thru the process, she's really savvy when it comes to sourcing products and co-ordinating a project so an E-Design solution was a perfect fit for her.  Within the package there are enough options presented that she still gets to have design input in the decision making. This project is from a couple of  years ago but Janice kept me updated along the way and last summer I had the opportunity to visit and take some 'after' photos of my own - which I'll share next week!!!  I was so impressed by what an amazing job they did turning these plans into reality the room literally blew me away when I saw it in person.  

The above drawings are just a portion of the e-design package I completed for Janice, she also received finish and fixture selections, a lighting plan, a source list, and a budget breakdown.  (note that specs have been removed from the drawings shown in this post).  You can check out more of Janice's bathroom project on theDesignshop website where you'll see some before pictures and some progress photos. 




All plans and drawings:  Carol Reed



Sunday, February 2, 2014

Winter Blues



My desk with a few of my favorite things.

I know I'm not the only one who's feeling the side effects of this extreme winter.  This winter is the first one I've spent fully on the East Coast and its been a harsh one, or as the elders here call it "an old time winter".  Anyone I talk to here says its been decades if ever, they can remember a winter like this.  I was born, raised and lived in Toronto all my life I can honestly say I've never suffered from the winter blues, until now.  The thought of another 2 months (or more!?) of this gets me down.  I'm well overdue to be back in TO and right now I miss my family, I miss my friends, I miss the sunshine.  Last week I found myself in such need of a pick me up I got up from my desk and drove into town solely for the purpose of finding some flowers.

I was excited to find a dozen long stem creamy white roses at Loblaws amongst the standard mixed bouquets. They'd just been marked down 50% because they'd reached their peak but did I care, ummm no, in fact they appealed to me even more because I felt like I was saving them from dying right there in the produce aisle without they're beauty ever being enjoyed.

The roses went immediately on my desk where I could enjoy them the most right along with some of my other favorite things.  Little things can make a big difference.  These flowers brought a cheery vibe to my office and gave me joy to look at (and smell) all day every day this week.  They really were a pick me up.  I need more!  I'll be searching for more flowers this week and maybe some spring bulbs.  I need to force a little spring to happen around here.  

The photo of the roses also captured some of my favorite things that live on my desk.  I keep them here because I love looking at them and/or they remind of some one or something beautiful that makes me smile.  At the back of the tray you can see a glimpse of a special gift from my friend Michelle, a rendering of my house in an antique gold frame.  The antique glass bottle was found in the dirt crawl space of our stone cellar during the renos last winter.  There's a quartz rock from our beach that I use as a paper weight (I have many sizes of these!).  Next to the flowers is a piece of vintage studio pottery I picked up at an antique market in Ontario, I keep paper clips and a few cards in there, the one visible is from a beautiful home accessories shop in Lunenburg that I discovered last winter. The card reminds me I need to go back for a visit.


The PENTPER General Shop, Lunenburg, NS.



The faux animal print wallet was a Christmas gift from my cats : ) I have a terrible habit of carrying my wallet only into stores and have often caught my cards falling out the end.  This zip up one has been so handy and I looove a leopard print, but what makes me smile every time I open it is there's a quote in gold lettering printed on the inside lining:

"If you want to feel rich, just count the things you have that money can't buy."

Definitely something worth reminding ourselves of everyday.  Its the little unexpected things isn't it!  (Leopard print wallet from Chapters Indigo.)




Later on in the week, despite another snow storm, working at my desk remained cheery with these mini mandarines - probably the cutest thing I have ever seen at the grocery store!  It was another effective pick-me-up shared with a few more favourites.  I treasure this japanese tea pot from a best friend and the next best thing to having a cup a tea with her.


On this ground hog day Punxsutawney Phil has predicted 6 more weeks of winter but Nova Scotia's own Schubenacadie Sam has predicted an early Spring.  Which probably mean the same thing.  I think only six more weeks of winter is equivalent to an early spring in Nova Scotia.  I'm running out of ways to beat these winter blues so, seriously Sam, I'm counting on you now. 



All Photos:  Carol Reed

Thursday, January 9, 2014

My House: Staircase Before & After



My almost complete, newly renovated staircase.

Upon completion of the first phase of our house reno, we wasted no time in moving our things into the new part of the house but we weren't in any rush to plunge into phase 2 of the renovation just yet.  Living in the house throughout the renovations took quite a toll on us and the cats, particularly our older cat who became quite sick during this time.  So we've spent the past 6 months enjoying a break from the construction as we slowly chipped away at completing some of the finishing work that was left to be done, like some trimwork, painting, and installing door hardware etc.,  We recently finished painting the staircase treads and railing and added a new runner.  There's a teeny bit more painting and touch-up to do on the staircase yet but I'm so thrilled to finally have the staircase at least 'looking' like its finished - its been a long transformation.  Here's a look at the staircase we started with.


Staircase before.
The existing staircase was not original to the house and I'd guess probably a 1980's addition.   It had no redeeming features or character, the railing was not to code as the spindles were spaced much too far apart and I felt the staircase itself was overly wide for the size of the house.  On the second level there is a hallway on one side of the staircase which you can see in the above photo.  We didn't demolish the staircase entirely, aside from the railing system, I worked with what was there as much as possible.  I did however rework the entire second floor layout which resulted in the upper hallway and railing being flipped to the opposite side of the staircase. 

Front hallway and staircase in progress
The one good thing about the extra wide staircase is that it makes for a large closet underneath the stairs, you can see a bit of the old closet door in in the photo above (under the stairs).  A glimpse of the new living room framing can be seen on the right.

Staircase in progress
In the above photo you can see the new wall is now installed on the second floor on the left side of the stairs.  The new staircase railing will go up the right side of the stairs continuous from the bottom tread to the top landing and then continue (with a 180 deg turn) back along the right hand side of the staircase opening above.  I wanted to do this without having a jog in the staircase section of the handrail which posed a bit of a challenge.  (If you look back to the photo of the old railing you can see the spindles and handrail actually terminate at the ceiling - or alternately the railing could have continued if it took a jog around the ceiling at this point.)


Railing install in progress
The knotty pine stringers and risers were painted out white.  New shop painted solid wood spindles were installed along with solid wood newel posts and handrail. I loved the simple elegance of the tapered spindles.  I was fortunate to find Eric, of Rise and Run Wood Crafting, he's a skilled and knowledgable staircase installer who with the help of an assistant completed the installation in a day and half. 

Staircase after, view from the top.
In this view you can see the newly configured second floor hallway located opposite to where it was previously.  The upper hallway is now directly above the lower hallway. What you can't see in this photo is that on the second floor directly above the front door, there is a tall peaked dormer with an original gothic arched window which now falls in the centre of the second floor hallway.  It has brought back symmetry to the floor plan and highlights the beautiful gothic window and drama of the peaked dormer.  I swear I could hear the house breathe a sigh of relief "aaagghhhh, that's better".  : ) Ok, i'm sure it was myself I heard saying that out loud but it really feels like the way the hallway was always meant to be. 

You can also see in this photo above how the spindles are positioned quite a bit inside the edge of the treads but this allowed for the handrail to remain straight (no jog) and the spacing on either side of the runner to remain equal from top to bottom.  A detail I debated with myself at length.  Another challenge was working with the antique wood flooring on the second floor which is 1-1/4" thick. Typically your wood flooring would transition flush with a wood nosing selected to match your flooring.  Since we were dealing with antique wood and a non-standard thickness, I opted to go with a paint grade nosing instead, installed on top of the flooring, not flush with it.  This meant I saved on the expense of having a custom nosing made and it would be a less labour intensive install.  Because its painted white it looks integrated with the railing system and other millwork around the stairs, so it works well.  


Staircase runner install in progress
We added v-groove planks to both side walls of the staircase and coated them in white paint like the risers and spindles.  The same v-groove planks are also used upstairs in the bathroom, master bedroom and closets.  My love for v-groove panelling will never waver....  



Staircase runner install in progress
I chose a durable ready made seagrass runner in a chevron pattern with a black binding, by Safavieh.  I like how the black border adds a crisp contrast against the white risers.  I love how the angle of the chevron echoes the gothic peak dormer on the front of the house and the seagrass suits this casual beachside location.  I ordered 2 separate runners which we butt joined together (bound ends cut), it was installed with a pneumatic gun. This is a thick carpet and very rough to the touch.  I chose this specifically for its durability and practicality for our cats.  One of the reasons I was so anxious to get the runner installed is because bare treads are slippery and dangerous for pets and our older cat in particular was having such a hard time, slipping and falling.   



Staircase After
The treads and handrail were painted a satin finish black.  You can clearly see here how the new spindles are inset quite a bit from the edge of the treads, this is a bit further than where I would typically place them, but I'm not bothered by it at all and I'm happy that I did this rather than jog the railing part way up the stairs.



Staircase after.
This is the view from just inside the living room.  We still have some touch up painting to do on the newel posts and clearly we still need some vent covers for the floor. (!) We're working on some custom wood ones, in the meantime we have to figure out how to retrieve all the cat toys that have fallen down the vent.  



Staircase closet door, after.
 The old closet door was clad in the same v-groove planks to make the door look seamless within the panelling.  I opened the door slightly in this photo to illustrate the baseboard is attached to the door.  Its such a good sized closet you can actually 'walk-in'.



Staircase runner, after.
As you can see Lucy (2 years old) just loves the new runner, as does the older guy who I'm happy to see sprinting up the stairs almost as fast as her. 

I had looked forward to dressing the newly finished staircase with cedar or pine garland this holiday season but a mix up in the shipment meant that we didn't get the correct runners delivered until new years eve.  Sooo,,,,it wasn't meant to be this season but next year I'll be ready with bells on and if all else goes according to plan I'll have a fireplace mantle to dress up too. Knock on wood.

An earlier post on the demo progress can be seen here, and check out this post for a sneak peek at the dining room progress here.



All photos and room design by:  Carol Reed


Thursday, November 14, 2013

The Art of Planning: Karen's Kitchen



Photo by Donna Griffith, for Style at Home


You may remember last  year I prepared some design sketches for my cyber friend Karen’s chicken coop gates.   If you’re a fan of the Art of Doing Stuff blog, like I am,,,you know Karen doesn’t often need help with anything because she’s a master at figuring how to do stuff herself.  She has a wonderful character style house and over the years she’s done many home improvements and decor projects inside and out.  Not your average homeowner diy's,,,,Karen has an impressive archive of magazine quality 'afters', in fact the inside of her house and her backyard have both been featured in Style at Home magazine which you can admire here and here.

Clearly Karen doesn't need any help in the decor or handyman departments but one of the few things she hasn’t tackled is the house's original 1940‘s kitchen.  She's pretty attached to the old kitchen and its easy to understand why - it oozes an authentic nostalgic charm that’s hard to replace (top photo).  Even the editors at Style at Home couldn't resist photographing and featuring it just the way it is.  Yah, even the "before" picture of Karen's kitchen is magazine worthy. ; )  Inevitably the time has come to replace it and Karen knows enough to know this in’t something she wanted to tackle on her own because the consequences of making mistakes or oversights are daunting, and expensive.  So this is where I came in.  Karen hired me thru my  e-design services to work on the new kitchen plans.  As far as finishes and appliances went she knew what she wanted but what she was struggling with was how to fit all of the new elements together.  She needed a plan.  




ASSESSING...
The first step I take is to review the existing space to assess what's working and what isn't.  The whats not working about her current kitchen might be obvious, but its not all bad.  There are aspects of this kitchen layout that Karen enjoys, particularly the huge expanse of uninterrupted counter space between the sink and range....and having a kitchen table and chairs. To be frank the shortcomings of the kitchen were easy to find solutions for but doing so and maintaining those elements that she loved was truly the challenge.  That and accommodating all of the other things on her wish list.


THE DESIGN BRIEF...
- 'not cookie cutter'
- no new construction
- non-custom cabinets
- more storage
- a range hood
- a glass door fridge
- a furniture style pantry
- a stand alone butcher block table
- a place to sit
- a fixed budget
- did I say 'not cookie cutter'..

Knowing that we couldn’t alter the bathroom, laundry room, mudroom or doorways,,,,,I recognized the biggest obstacle in Karen’s kitchen was the counter height window on the end wall.  It’s location was a prime spot for a range and hood, or a fridge,,,or wall cabinets.  Ideally it needed to be moved to best utilize the space. Unfortunately the window was fairly new and had involved re-stucco’ing the exterior of the house.  The option of moving it or changing it now was not in the budget so it was staying.  Had we not been able to find a workable layout that Karen loved, I would have suggested she hold off until her budget allowed to move the window because it would open up so much more layout potential. 





This is an example of how we could have utilized the wall had we moved the window. We quickly eliminated this option (and variations of it) for budget reasons and moved on.



Even though this layout doesn't appear to be drastically different than the existing, the changes are significant enough that with new, more efficient cabinetry and appliances it would be a big improvement.  This option ticked all the boxes including a 36" range.  It was the front runner,,,,,until,,,, Karen came home with an antique butcher block island that she couldn't resist and that meant a change in plans.  But I've seen and completely approved,,,it's a beauty worth changing things up for.





THE AFTER PLAN....
After exploring more than a dozen layout options we arrived at a final plan that Karen loves (shown above).   You can read Karen's first post about her kitchen reno plans here .......and you'll notice she received no shortage of opinions and suggestions from readers too. ; )   I'm confident in saying they can rest assured that the planning process was extremely thorough and not a single possible option was overlooked.  : )  (We are aware the fridge overlaps the window a tad in this layout but this is the worst case scenario and we're prepared for how to deal with it.  The fridge she's hoping to get is narrower than this but we're planning for the larger option just in case).

True to her vision “not cookie cutter” would be the design mandate and concept for Karen’s new kitchen.  This applies to the layout too. There are a LOT of kitchen design standards, rules of thumb and conventional layouts with their regulated work triangles - well this plan doesn’t necessarily follow all those rules.  And that's perfectly ok.  I can say from experience that the clients who do a lot of serious cooking are the ones who's kitchens stray from generic design standards the most because they have much more specific needs, usually simpler.

When I approach a kitchen plan from scratch I use spacing standards only as a starting point (which also is an instant way to gauge if your footprint is considered tight or generous).  From there I determine how and where adjustments can be made to suit the space and the users specific needs.  There's nothing wrong with conventional layout standards but they simply don’t always fit or work for every situation, that doesn't mean you can't still have a kitchen that's functional - it just means you need more adaptable solutions (while maintaining safety and functionality of course).









In addition to the floor plan I also worked out all of the wall elevations which detail Karen's new cabinetry and will facilitate getting it ordered.  The task of pulling this entire plan together is now in her very capable hands and I can't wait to see it all come together.   Karen has done some savvy networking to co-ordinate a few great collaborations and sponsors for this project.  The design layout reflects the products and publication opportunities that are anticipated thru the collaborations as well as some of Karen’s unique finds so it promises to be an interesting and beautiful transformation story for all parties involved.

You can follow the kitchen reno progress over at The Art of Doing Stuff and I'll post updates here as it starts coming together!




Sunday, July 28, 2013

My House: Dining Room Progress




For the past 11 months we've had the front part of our East Coast house and the entire 2nd floor undergoing an extensive renovation.  The reno area consists of a living room, dining room, hallway/staircase, 2 bedrooms and a bathroom - in total less than 1000 s.f.  Its been 11 months and this new work is still not finished.  I expected we'd  have the entire house reno completed by now but reality is I'm dealing with Atlantic time here. Nothing happens quickly.  This first phase of renos is complete enough now that we've moved into the new area and its a huge relief to have the extra room and to have the tools and dust and daily trades gone.   

Its fitting that the very first room we used in the new part of the house was the Dining Room (even before the bedrooms).  What better way to christen the new space than a special dinner with family, our very first house guests.   I never imaged 3 months previous when we planned their visit that w'ed be scrambling to get the new space livable by July 1st.   It was a close call,  I'll be honest, new beds arrived for the bedrooms on Thursday, the plumber arrived on Friday to install the bahtroom fixtures, boxes were being upacked on Saturday and our guests arrived on Sunday.  I had hotel rooms reserved just in case but miraculously we didn't need them.   Shortly after they arrived we gathered in our "new" dining room for a big dinner.  To give you an idea of how far this room has come, here's a little before and after along with a peek at some of the progress.


Dining Room Before


Dining Room After (same view as "Before" photo)


The only redeeming feature about this room "before" was that it was a decent size.   Fake wood panelling, acoustical tile ceiling (its everywhere here), nasty pet stained carpet, mis-matched trim work - it all had to go.  With a house this old a coat of paint and a steam clean isn't nearly enough to bring the space up to todays standards.  Behind the walls and above the tile ceiling your likely to find no insulation, mould, loads of mouse droppings, critter nests, faulty wiring and water damage.  We found all of that and more.  The only way you could move forward with this interior was to go backwards first.




On the floor we stripped back a layer of carpet, a layer of vinyl and a particle board subfloor to reveal what I had suspected (and desperately hoped) was there. Original solid wood wide plank floor boards, complete with a solid wood subfloor beneath.  I was ecstatic when we uncovered these and that they were throughout the entire house.


These are what the floors looked like after stripping off layers of paint. 




The next most exciting discovery was uncovering these original timber ceiling joists in the living and dining rooms.  Just like the wood floors, these beauties hadn't seen the light of day in a looooong time and I had no intention of covering them up again.



Almost there,,,many months later here's the dining room just after the drywallers finished.  We reframed all the exterior walls, added insulation, new drywall and new wood windows and all new trim work.  The wood ceiling beams were left bare and new drywall was seamlessly fitted around them.

Below is a sneak peek of what the dining room looked like the day we used it for the first time with our guests, I literally took the building permit out of the window seconds before these photos were taken.   The room was far from finished; there are no light fixtures, no electrical cover plates, no vent covers and barely any furniture.  The table and chairs we moved into the room are completely temporary but work for now - it will ALL be replaced in the near future.  The fact that the room isn't complete and is a long way from where I want it to be, would never stop me from making use of it now as best I can.











This is how the table looked while I was half way thru setting it for our first dinner.  I filled the bottoms of the hurricane lanterns with sand from the beach and added wild daisies and ferns that I picked from the side of our road (there's no flower shop to run to).  In case you're wondering what was on the menu for this inaugural dinner - we had a lobster feed of course. : )

So that's a sneak peek of the new construction in the dining room, the furnishings and artwork are another story all together.  Stay tuned for sneak peeks of the other "new" rooms which I'll be posting soon.  You can also check out some before photos of the exterior on my first post about the property here and one other post on some of the demo progress here.





Room Design and all Photos by:  Carol Reed





Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Grey Scale: Powder Room


Clients powder room in various stages of progress.


I was sorting through room photos of past projects and came across these images of a powder room from a recent renovation, the 70's Bungalow project.  It dawned on me that I hadn't ever posted any photos of this room before, probably because its just such a difficult room to capture without a wide angle lens.  Like the entire house this room underwent a complete gut so we started with a clean slate - dark grey slate in fact which I chose as a wall colour for the small room.  



Small rooms are the perfect spaces to play up drama and scale - whether its a large print wallpaper, deep paint colour or graphic floor pattern, going bold will have lots of impact and kick the wow factor up a notch for your guests when they excuse themselves to powder their noses. It makes the entire experience a little more special.  : )    The drama in this little room doesn't come from the colour, its neutral in that sense but the walls are deep and dark and quite a departure from the rest of the home's all white modern interior.  The large calacatta marble floor tiles have beautiful dramatic veining.   




A bevelled tray mirror adds some elegant sparkle to the dark room but the floor to ceiling bare grey wall was crying out for a piece of artwork and I wanted large scale.   What I had completely forgotten about until I came across these room photos the other day was that we had one of my own photographs framed and hung on the wall.   For this room it was an affordable alternative to what would have needed to be a very large  original piece (or a smaller pair) of art.  I sent my file to Elevator Digital and once again, Kevin worked his magic on it to make sure when it was enlarged that the image quality was maintained and then the print was beautifully matted and framed.

The photo chosen was from a series I took of buildings on Wall Street when I was in NYC two summers ago. The homeowners have both travelled to NY for business over the years and now have a son who lives in Manhattan, they're pretty fond of the city and were quite taken with many of my architectural photos.   Its hard to tell from this not so great snapshot but the size of the framed piece is over 3' wide and over 4' tall.  Its not actually a black and white image but the colours are all monochromatic greys that it reads that way.  My favorite thing about this photo is the perspective,  its so dynamic that it brings an amazing sense of depth to the room. 



There's been lots of finishing touches and a massive landscaping overhaul happening at this house over the past year so they'll be more after photos coming soon.



Room Design and all Photos By:  Carol Reed



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