Month: June 2017

Bathroom Remodeling: Vanities to Cabinets, Shower Panels, Toilets and Bathtubs

Bathroom remodeling can be a creative and transformative project. Why do people take on a bathroom-remodeling venture? There are many reasons. Some motivations to remodel are repairing damage, increasing house value, updating style and functionality, or simply creating a more comfortable and beautiful bathroom. Deciding which fixtures to replace, either one or all, can help determine the atmosphere of the end result. In this article we will explore various options for fixtures to consider replacing in a bathroom-remodeling job.

A bathroom vanity, a combination of sink, cabinet and mirror, is possibly the fixture we notice first when we enter a bathroom. Choosing an elegant contemporary bathroom vanity can bring the feel of a comfortable room to the bathroom remodel. Bathroom vanities, useful for storage and organization, come in one-sink or two-sink models. Deciding on the size of your bathroom vanity will depend on the number of people who plan to use it, the dimensions of your bathroom, and the amount of items needing storage.  Consideration of the other storage available in the bathroom is important as well.

Another storage possibility for a bathroom remodel is bathroom cabinets. Having plenty of space available to store away toiletries, cleaning products, and linens, which may not all fit in the vanity, is important to consider for your future bathroom. Bathroom cabinets come in many configurations and styles. This makes it easy to fit them into potentially small or tricky spaces. Whether they are wall-mounted or free standing, you can find bathroom cabinets to store all your bathroom related belongings.

Adding luxury and enjoyment to a bathroom remodel can boost your sense of wellbeing, as well as the value of your home. One potential way to do this is to incorporate a whirlpool bathtub into your bathroom-remodeling scheme. A whirlpool bathtub can bring the tranquil atmosphere of a spa right into your own home. Designs for a whirlpool bathtub come in oval, rectangular and even corner models so large or small bathrooms can accommodate one.  

Another way to upgrade your bathroom and increase its pleasant spa like qualities is to incorporate a stress relieving shower panel. A shower panel is a streamlined rectangular structure that is installed either in a stand-up shower or over a bathtub. It usually consists of a showerhead, a hand held shower device, various massaging water jets, and knobs for diverting water, controlling temperature, and adjusting pressure.  

In order to save money and protect the environment you may decide to install a water-saving ecoflush toilet. These toilets are designed to function efficiently while using considerably less water than older model toilets. Using ecoflush toilets helps save money on your monthly water bill due to reduced water usage.  The ecoflush toilet also helps the environment by conserving water, a precious and non-renewable resource.

Re-envisioning your bathroom into a calming, impressive, and useful room can be a fulfilling endeavor. There are many options, a few of which are mentioned here, to help you realize the best possible design for your bathroom remodel.… Read More

09c – McClung Residence – 1959 La Salle Ave (E)

09c - McClung Residence - 1959 La Salle Ave (E)

West Adams Heights

“Nowadays we scarcely notice the high stone gates which mark the entrances on Hobart, Harvard, and Oxford streets, south of Washington Boulevard. For one thing, the traffic is too heavy, too swift; and then, again, the gates have been obscured by intrusions of shops and stores. At the base of the stone pillars appears the inscription “West Adams Heights.” There was a time when these entranceways were formidable and haughty, for they marked the ways to one of the first elite residential areas in Los Angeles. . . In the unplanned early-day chaos of Los Angeles, West Adams Heights was obviously something very special, an island in an ocean of bungalows—approachable, but withdrawn and reclusive—one of the few surviving examples of planned urban elegance of the turn of the century.”

– Carey McWilliams, “The Evolution of Sugar Hill,” Script, March, 1949: 30.

Today West Adams Heights is still obviously something special. The past sixty years, however, have not been kind. In 1963 the Santa Monica Freeway cut through the heart of West Adams Heights, dividing the neighborhood, obscuring its continuity. In the 1970’s the city paved over the red brick streets and removed the ornate street lighting. After the neighborhood’s zoning was changed to a higher density, overzealous developers claimed several mansions for apartment buildings. Despite these challenges, however, “The Heights,” as the area was once known, has managed to regain some of its former elegance.

The West Adams Heights tract was laid out in 1902, in what was then a wheat field on the western edge of town. Although the freeway now creates an artificial barrier, the original neighborhood boundaries were Adams Boulevard, La Salle Ave, Washington Boulevard, and Western Avenue. Costly improvements were integrated into the development, such as 75-food wide boulevards (which were some of the first contoured streets not to follow the city grid), lots elevated from the sidewalk, ornate street lighting, and large granite monuments with red-brass electroliers at the entrance to every street. These upgrades increased the lot values, which helped ensure the tract would be an enclave for the elite.

One early real estate ad characterized the neighborhood stating: “West Adams Heights needs no introduction to the public: it is already recognized as being far superior to any other tract. Its high and slightly location, its beautiful view of the city and mountains make t a property unequaled by any other in the city.”

The early residents’ were required to sign a detailed restrictive covenant. This hand-written document required property owners to build a “first-class residence,” of at least two stories, costing no less than two-thousand dollars (at a time when a respectable home could be built for a quarter of that amount, including the land), and built no less than thirty-five feet from the property’s primary boundary. Common in early twentieth century, another clause excluded residents from selling or leasing their properties to non-Caucasians.

By the mid 1930’s, however, most of the restrictions had expired. Between 1938 and 1945 … Read More

His Most Famous Painting (The Walk Home) – Julian Schnabel

American painter, sculptor and filmmaker, Julian Schnabel (born, 1951) is a recognized name in Hollywood, who has also been a front-runner of ‘Neo-Expressionism.’ He entered the field of art through his first solo exhibition in the year 1975, when painting as an art, was losing its sheen. Schnabel is known for his overly assertive ways of self-promotion, often to the ire of the critics and art admirers. His style of painting is full of brashness, provocation, and raw force of expression. Schnabel’s magnum opus, “The Walk Home,” remains the most significant corroborator of his undisputed authority over the ‘Modern Expressionist’ art.

“The Walk Home” is a large piece, 9’3″ X 19’4″ in dimension, created during 1984-85, and currently put on display at the Museum of Contemporary Art at Los Angeles. This painting beautifully carries the distinguishing elements of the resurrected art of painting in the form of defiant ‘Abstractionism,’ where the artists refuse to confine their works to pure paints over flat canvas. Actually, “The Walk Home” is an ‘Abstract’ piece of work set in varied media, such as broken pieces of crockery, metals like bronze & copper, pieces of fiberglass, and oil paints, over a base made of wood. This work represents a blend of mosaic, painting, and minor relief work as a revolutionary practice in an otherwise staid art of painting. In line with most of the sects of ‘Modern Art,’ “The Walk Home” also focuses more on the technique of presentation, rather than merely on a thematic expression.

The modern artists dismiss the concept of singleness of the meaning of an artwork and they prefer to keep it open to the different sections of admirers to interpret the meaning their way. The theme of Julian’s “The Walk Home” is believed to be centered on the fable of a king who was attacked by unknown assailants, who hid in waiting, on his way home. Arguably, it indirectly, symbolizes the artist’s resentment against the conventional landscape of art, where each new movement of artistic rendition has tried to cannibalize its previous generation. It further reflects an artist’s befuddlement, amid the haze of the ‘Post-Modernist’ art scenario, in identifying the way back to where they belong. The bold color scheme and thick brush strokes, embodiment of the trapped coarse energy and overflowing emotions over assorted random media, add to the dramatic appeal of the depiction, ranking it as one of the masterpieces of modern creativity.… Read More

Foundation Repair – 7 Important Facts You’ll Want To Know!

Foundation Repair definitely is something you will want to address (if need be) within your home. I did some research on the subject and came across the following facts. Safety must come first when it comes to this topic.

1. Many homeowners experience the need for foundation repair. It’s definitely something none of us look forward to, but unfortunately it happens.

2. Foundation repair is usually needed most whenever the home was built on expansive soils. That’s where damage and movement is common. Usually, the southern parts of the U.S. are the worst. Expansive soils contain minerals that absorb water that can wreck havoc to your home’s foundation.

3. Water and weather are two of your worst enemies when it comes to your home’s foundation. They both can have damaging effects. You have some control over water; however, weather unfortunately is not controllable.

4. Trees actually absorb a good deal of water near the foundation of your home. Trees can be beautiful adding to the landscape of your home; but unfortunately they can possibly cause problems as well.

5. Whenever you suspect your home may have a foundation problem, check for cracked sheetrock or cracks in your home’s brick on the outside.

6. Sometimes when there’s a problem, doors or windows may not open easily.

7. If you procrastinate doing foundation repairs and want to sell your home, it may hamper your closing.

Foundation Repair is not for the weekend “do-it-yourselfer” project; however. Should you experience any type of foundation problems within your home, I highly recommend you contact a Professional.… Read More

5 Major Home Renovation Projects That Offer The Best Return On Investment

When it comes to renovating your home for re-sale there are a few major renovations that top the list.

1. Major Kitchen Remodels. (ROI 75-85%)

The function of the kitchen has evolved over the years and now more than ever the kitchen must meet those needs.

  • Buyers want to envision themselves in a gorgeous newly renovated kitchen where they can actually see themselves – preparing meals for their friends and family -where the kids nestle into a cozy banquette doing their homework, or their guests mingling around that gorgeous island. Buyers want to see this in their minds eye and know that it’s attainable.
  • A major kitchen remodel may need to include a new floor plan to improve on a poorly designed work triangle.
  • If the kitchen is completely dated, isolated and compartmentalized with an inefficient floor plan and layout – don’t think that replacing the cabinets and appliances will camouflage the problem. It won’t!
  • If at all possible add an island into those plans. Everyone loves them!
  • Replacing all cabinetry, appliances, lighting, flooring, finishes and fixtures and new French doors and windows will grab the buyers’ attention.
  • Since kitchens and baths are the costliest rooms to renovate, the buyer will be thrilled that the work is already done for them.

2. Family Room Additions. (75% ROI)

The family room is the second most popular space in the home after the kitchen.

  • Adding 400 sq. ft. of bright and cheery living space (if your neighborhood will bare it), will definitely improve the value of the home
  • Increase the overall height of your space and introduce a vaulted ceiling. Creating a sense of volume instantly makes a room feel more spacious.
  • Consider the details and add beautiful French doors, floor to ceiling windows or even skylights to flood this new space with light and maximizes a view. Take it one step further and add the deck.

3. Deck Addition. (72-95% ROI)

Deck additions are quite possibly the best investments these days. They naturally transition the interior to the exterior – instantly expanding your living space.

And who doesn’t love that?

  • It’s a vacation-at-home experience, as it expands your living space and extends the summer season – forcing you to live more outdoors before the winter season sets in.
  • Its design can be as simple or elaborate as the home it’s attached to.
  • Multi-leveled or single, built in seating or casual seating areas, hot tubs, and outdoor kitchens – all of which add to the vacation home atmosphere.
  • Decks are more popular than pools and relatively easy to build.
  • Design the deck to compliment the character of your home’s exterior architecture. Give it some thought in planning – it should be proportionate to the size of your yard.
  • Incorporate energy efficient solar or led lighting.

4. Main Floor Master Bedroom Addition(73% ROI)

  • Adding a 400 sq.ft. master bedroom suite and spa-like bath provides a private retreat and appeals to many home buyers. Access to main floor is gaining in popularity.
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