Transformation Tuesday

We're always trying to find a good way to share our process.  How our projects transform from beginning to end and all the nitty gritty that goes on behind the scenes.  Often we take a million pictures that never make it onto social media or our website; because honestly they're just plain uninspiring and we like to show off the sparkly stuff, the new stuff, the final product.  But just like anything else, the lead up is the most important part and what takes the most thought.  So here are some of our favorite before and afters, which will hopefully give you the motivation to take on that next project with courage and inspiration!

Our client was craving a brighter space that offered more counter top surface for food prep and entertaining.  They wanted to keep the existing tile floor and most appliances and fixtures in their current locations.

Our client was craving a brighter space that offered more counter top surface for food prep and entertaining.  They wanted to keep the existing tile floor and most appliances and fixtures in their current locations.

First order of business was finding a lighter cabinet color that would make the space feel larger and more open.  The existing window would help too, by allowing the sunlight to pour in if the curtains were eliminated and we could accent with some beautiful glass tile.

First order of business was finding a lighter cabinet color that would make the space feel larger and more open.  The existing window would help too, by allowing the sunlight to pour in if the curtains were eliminated and we could accent with some beautiful glass tile.

The existing layout of this job made absolutely no sense.  When our clients purchased this home, there was a powder room (pictured above), that neighbored another bathroom.  And the strangest part was that the vanity then resided in another room all together.  Long story short...we consolidated with a whole lot of space planning and reworking of the systems.

The existing layout of this job made absolutely no sense.  When our clients purchased this home, there was a powder room (pictured above), that neighbored another bathroom.  And the strangest part was that the vanity then resided in another room all together.  Long story short...we consolidated with a whole lot of space planning and reworking of the systems.

By knocking down the wall in between, our square footage doubled!  This made room for a double vanity and a soaking tub/shower combo.  A classic New England aesthetic with some modern touches was achieved through the finish and fixture selection.  And that green...so pretty and calming!

By knocking down the wall in between, our square footage doubled!  This made room for a double vanity and a soaking tub/shower combo.  A classic New England aesthetic with some modern touches was achieved through the finish and fixture selection.  And that green...so pretty and calming!

Guys.  This here kitchen was so darn scary before demo.  We were able to salvage most of the wall paneling and sheet rock, but the floors were brought right down to the original sub floor.

Guys.  This here kitchen was so darn scary before demo.  We were able to salvage most of the wall paneling and sheet rock, but the floors were brought right down to the original sub floor.

To keep costs down we specified a beautiful gray, linen-textured laminate for the counter tops and a clean white, shaker style cabinet door.  New red oak floors were laid to match the rest of the home.  Open shelving worked well for extra storage, particularly in this small space where upper cabinets would have felt too crowded.

To keep costs down we specified a beautiful gray, linen-textured laminate for the counter tops and a clean white, shaker style cabinet door.  New red oak floors were laid to match the rest of the home.  Open shelving worked well for extra storage, particularly in this small space where upper cabinets would have felt too crowded.

Sometimes we'll get an inquiry from a client who needs our help with just the furniture and finishes in their home.  This living room was a blank slate, and we all agreed that it needed some brightening up, in addition to some upholstery that would ground the room and balance the stone fireplace.

Sometimes we'll get an inquiry from a client who needs our help with just the furniture and finishes in their home.  This living room was a blank slate, and we all agreed that it needed some brightening up, in addition to some upholstery that would ground the room and balance the stone fireplace.

The existing built-ins, timber framed beams in the ceiling, doors and windows were all painted and the pine floors were refinished with a water based poly to keep them light and bright.  Navy linen sofas were chosen to coordinate with a unique area rug from Jaipur and our client's love of red was incorporated through throw pillows and accessories.

The existing built-ins, timber framed beams in the ceiling, doors and windows were all painted and the pine floors were refinished with a water based poly to keep them light and bright.  Navy linen sofas were chosen to coordinate with a unique area rug from Jaipur and our client's love of red was incorporated through throw pillows and accessories.

This Singer sewing machine dates back to the early 1900's and belonged to our client's grandmother.  Because of it's sentiment we thought it would be so cool to incorporate it into her boutique space that was under renovation.  It had all the right bones, but would need a little sprucing up!

This Singer sewing machine dates back to the early 1900's and belonged to our client's grandmother.  Because of it's sentiment we thought it would be so cool to incorporate it into her boutique space that was under renovation.  It had all the right bones, but would need a little sprucing up!

Because the original top had a cutout for the sewing machine and was in rough shape, we had it rebuilt and stained to match.  The vessel sink and wall mounted faucet adds a modern contrast to the antique details of the original drawer fronts and signature wrought iron base.

Because the original top had a cutout for the sewing machine and was in rough shape, we had it rebuilt and stained to match.  The vessel sink and wall mounted faucet adds a modern contrast to the antique details of the original drawer fronts and signature wrought iron base.

An Oldie but Goodie

Seems like forever and a day since we shut the marvelous gold door to tayla Mac Boutique at the end of it's renovation last winter.  A project we hold near and dear to our hearts, mainly because owner Mikayla Parsons has been our biggest cheerleader and allowed us to get all crazy-creative time and again.

This space was so fun because of it's location in our sweet neighborhood of Wallingford Square, Kittery.  An area with dynamic history and eye catching architecture, now stands as home to delicious restaurants and unique retail shops.

We knew after the first site visit there must be some real charm waiting to be uncovered and restored.  And low and behold, it did not disappoint!  Original tin ceilings with decorative egg and dart crown molding was found above the existing dropped ceiling.

Before:  Peeling tin ceiling surrounded by spaghetti wires and random pipes...yikes!

Before:  Peeling tin ceiling surrounded by spaghetti wires and random pipes...yikes!

After:  Lookin' so good after multiple coats of primer and a flat finish coat.  Thank you to our wonderful painting crew for their backbreaking work to restore this beauty!

After:  Lookin' so good after multiple coats of primer and a flat finish coat.  Thank you to our wonderful painting crew for their backbreaking work to restore this beauty!

We had high hopes for the wood floors, since the back office had the original narrow planks.  But after peeling back multiple layers of subfloor we found that new floors would need to be laid.  White oak was chosen for it's aesthetic and durability in a commercial setting, with a gray stain from Minwax.

Before (ish) from the front door.

Before (ish) from the front door.

One of our favorite details from this project was working with Boston-based Artaic Mosaics on a custom floor tile design.

One of our favorite details from this project was working with Boston-based Artaic Mosaics on a custom floor tile design.

Gray floors paired nicely with barn board, supplied by the shop owner's family.

Gray floors paired nicely with barn board, supplied by the shop owner's family.

The shop would be a mecca for American made goodies, so fixtures and displays were custom designed with curating in mind!  Fine linen dresses from the coast of Maine, ceramics in punchy colors, hand-sewn totes, candles and soaps in moody packaging, unique jewels and witty greeting cards would be gracing the shelves of this sweet boutique.

Clothing rack details.  1/2" galvanized piping never looked so good.

Clothing rack details.  1/2" galvanized piping never looked so good.

A stationer's delight!

A stationer's delight!

This Singer sewing machine table belonged to the shop owner's grandmother and made for the perfect wash basin for soaps and cosmetics.

This Singer sewing machine table belonged to the shop owner's grandmother and made for the perfect wash basin for soaps and cosmetics.

Simple open shelves for colorful home accessories.

Simple open shelves for colorful home accessories.

TaylaMac0064.jpg
Antique bin pulls for the hutch, courtesy of Old House Parts in Kennebunk.

Antique bin pulls for the hutch, courtesy of Old House Parts in Kennebunk.

Custom jewelry cases with vintage hand mirrors to admire yourself.

Custom jewelry cases with vintage hand mirrors to admire yourself.

oh hello, we're new here.

Owning a small business should come with a handbook...and cliff notes (for those of us who would never actually read the handbook).

Chapter 1: Expanding a Day Beyond 24 Hours.

Chapter 2: How to Keep Your Tires Pumped Up While on Social Media.

Future publishing ideas aside, it seems we have completely neglected our potential blog audience over the past three years.

                     neglecting our blog audience, clearly.

                     neglecting our blog audience, clearly.

 

One of the sentences we hear most often regarding owning an interior design business is, "that must be so much fun - I'd love to do that."  Now please don't misinterpret us here, there is SO much to love about our firm and the clients we work with. That being said, we are not doing cartwheels and throwing cash in the air, marveling at all things pretty.  We hope to use our blog to take you on a magic carpet ride with us, showing you behind the scenes of this funny little business we've created. Forgive grammatical mistakes (when they aren't offensive), and know that we are always doing our best.

As the great Tina Fey said, "You have to let people see what you wrote. It will never be perfect, but perfect is overrated. Perfect is boring."

                  here's a little reminder from us to you.

                  here's a little reminder from us to you.