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Whole-House Remodel in McLean, VA: Part 1

Master Bedroom & Bathroom Remodel

A McLean, Virginia rambler, built in 1959, had good bones, but over time, it required various upgrades to keep up with a growing family. In 2002, a young family purchased the house and set out to make a long-term commitment to their new home, endeavoring to make it the best it could be.

They lived in their house for a few years to study what kind of remodeling would work best for their family and planned ahead to pursue a whole-house remodel to include the:

  • Master bedroom and bathroom
  • Kitchen and dining room
  • Family room
  • Living room

Savvy and experienced, the homeowners viewed their project as finding the best solution with regard to budget, quality, and quantity of space. They understood that compromises would have to be made, and that finding the right balance between money, quality and quantity was imperative to their success.

Lovers of the Arts & Crafts style, the homeowners were eager to see the design theme established in their earlier home remodeling carried throughout the remodeling. New tapered columns, curved elements, applied flat moldings, simple paneled doors, and painted wainscoting enhance the interior spaces and provide consistency of design.

Bedroom Remodel

Master Bedroom

For the master bedroom, the homeowners felt they had functional aspects as well as aesthetic issues to resolve. A squeaky oak wood floor in their bedroom not only annoyed them but also disturbed visitors staying in the guest room below. Our construction experts recommended taking up the old floor and reinstalling new oak flooring over a proper underlayment with screws to eliminate the noise issue. Our carpenters installed a new subfloor and newly laid oak floor that is tight and quiet to walk on.

The old bedroom windows (from the 1950s) were too high for garden views, too small and leaky. Our clients were frustrated that their house lacked proper insulation and caused their bedroom to be a cold in the winter. We installed new windows with insulated glass technology to help improve the room’s insulation value and comfort. Aesthetic improvements were made with windows in the Craftsman style. The woodland-garden view from the master bedroom is spectacular—to capture the view, the old window opening was expanded and fitted with new and larger windows. Flanking the bed was a pair of asymmetrical windows, which we changed to be more equal in size and provide aesthetic balance.

To create an aesthetically pleasing sleeping space, the owners’ cherry wood furniture (bed, night stands, dresser, and bench) is contrasted against carefully painted surfaces.

The design of the bedroom achieves a sense of peace and organization. The ceiling’s central area has applied moldings that define the bed area and bridge to opposite walls—one with an architectural style headboard and the other with a full height wall of wainscot that unobtrusively integrates the bathroom door. Detailed in a simple craftsman style motif, the ceiling and wall paneling is highlighted with white paint. For contrast, the drywall is painted a darker shade of gray. The full-height wainscot, hung with art prints, enhances the view from the bed and makes the master bathroom’s “secret door” a surprise to visitors.

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Master Bathroom

Master Bathroom Every functional and aesthetic need was addressed in the master bath remodel. The space was gutted to its studs and reworked within its modest footprint. As with many urban area homeowners, our clients did not feel the need, nor have the space, for a soaking tub in the master bathroom. However, a large walk-in shower with bench and two recessed storage niches was a must-have. A custom frameless glass shower enclosure, with a unique shower valve pipe mounted on the glass, acts as a sculptural element in the space. Because the bathroom is small, the frameless glass shower enclosure allows the design to maximize footprint and minimize its visual impact.

Variegated wall and floor tile provide a mix of color, texture, and patterns for the shower and bathroom floor. Pops of blue floor tile (penny rounds) enhance the custom cherry wood vanity, which features two sinks and a manmade stone countertop. In addition to ample storage, the cabinetry was equipped with a pull-out trash container and pull-out hamper drawer. Painted wall paneling with integrated mirrors and hanging pendants create a focal point at the vanity wall. A new window, with obscure glass, provides fresh air to the bathroom.

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Part 2 of this whole-house remodel project spotlight (kitchen, dining room, family room, and living room) is coming soon!

“ Thank you so much for the very thoughtful gift and card you sent to welcome [our son] home. He has been following the baseball standings with great interest, and is looking forward to many messy meals with his Red Sox bib and bottle. And whether he realizes it or not, his meal times have been made much more pleasant - and his parents are much happier - because of the fabulous new kitchen you designed and built for us. It was really kind of you to think of us at this special time in our lives. ”

Amelia & Mike M.
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