Turn your dream home into a reality
courtesy Jennifer Hoey Interior Design
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Keeping up with the latest trends is hard. Whether it’s the newest hi-tech gadget or the fall fashion lineup, the best we can hope for is a new smart phone or a mohair sweater.
But what about our homes? According to a 2008 survey, at least 73 percent of Americans engage in some form of daily household activity. Are we doing enough to keep our homes, like our phones and shoes, current?
The task of updating even a single room can be daunting. But with a focused plan and some professional guidance, interior designer Jennifer Hoey said remodels can be an approachable way to improve a home.
“With remodels, hiring a professional is the starting point because they can walk you through what needs to be done,” Hoey said. “If you have someone professional leading you through the process, you’re going to save money in the end.”
Hoey suggested a task list that focuses in on specifics to keep from getting sidetracked with other projects along the way. Architect Jeff Williams said without a clear objective, remodels can quickly become significantly more expensive than planned.
“One of the biggest problems we encounter in remodels is we start tearing down the drywall and finding all kinds of things no one knew about,” Williams said. “It’s always a discovery process.”
Although certain discoveries will necessitate extra work and money, Williams said aspiring remodelers often get carried away into improving everything instead of the few items that were initially problematic. A remodel is only sensible if the end costs are less than tearing down the entire house and starting fresh, he said. For a remodel to be the right choice, Williams said the homeowners need to appreciate the basic bones of the house and the way it functions; otherwise, they are likely to let costs spiral out of control by trying to change too much.
If a remodel is the appropriate choice, Hoey said there are many small touches that can easily transform a room.
“I think paint is such a huge way to change the look of a space,” Hoey said. “And it’s cheap too.”
She also recommended changing the hardware on cabinets and doors or altering the lighting of a room to create a new vibe.
Williams suggested adding decorative mirrors as a way to generate more light while adding a personalized element or redoing the stonework on a fireplace to change the mood of a living room.
We sought out the best examples of local homeowners who took on large projects and ended with stunning results. Whether the home needed an update in style or a complete reconfiguration, each took on specific goals and ended with success. Check out these before-and-after photos to see how remodeling can truly transform a space.
THE VALLEY CLUB
Owners B. J. and Nancy Blair had used the home as a vacation getaway and were contemplating building a new full-time residence. In the end, they determined that the house could be modified and expanded to fit their needs year-round. Their primary focus was to transform the existing kitchen and convert the garage into a media/rec room. The challenge was in keeping the features the Blairs liked in the original house while reworking the rest.
They added on: a new three-car garage, mud room, powder room, office, master closet; made modifications to the master bedroom; added a new outside fireplace, barbecue and terrace areas; and did a general reworking of the exposed woodwork of the interior and the exterior finishes. It was a fairly complete remodel of the home.
A terrific juxtaposition of contemporary and rustic, using the strong points of the existing design, then updating and expanding the home to personalize and modernize the feel.
In the kitchen: Italian-made custom cabinetry, bronze tile backsplash, marble island counter and a custom range hood. In the rec room, the six-foot-wide gas fireplace feature was covered with pre-cast concrete and backed with a recessed plasma television. Other custom items included a six-foot-wide-by-eight-foot-tall pivot front door and custom designed wood wall screen containing electronic photo frames for family pictures.
Contractor: Hayward Construction
Architect: Williams | Partners Architects
IN THE HOME
The new rec room was an especially imaginative way to recycle space in this remodel. Where the owners once parked their cars, they can now enjoy a game of pool! The rec room lighting was done by Pink Electric, the fireplace by Ketchum Heating and the wet bar by European Marble & Granite. The new kitchen features Italian-made custom cabinetry by Poliform, a bronze tile back-splash by Hailey-based Rocky Mountain Hardware, a new Ventahood from Fisher Appliance, re-cast concrete by Cliffhangers and a wood counter top/bar by Cimarron Lofting.