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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Several months ago (been busy) I posted a question regarding the impact of converting a tub to a shower in a one bath home. http://www.contractortalk.com/f18/impact-upon-home-value-converting-tub-shower-127093/ The following is the result of that conversion.

HO's primary request was to create a "contemporary spa like atmosphere".

As I have mentioned previously, I am self-taught, do all the work myself and only subcontract the granite and glass. I did not come up through the ranks as most of you have. Therefore, it is incredibly beneficial to my knowledge base and future performance to have my work critiqued by anyone wiling to share their thoughts. Thanks in advance.

Before's:
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
During:
A Harbor Freight blanket over the tub worked great with the sledge.

Counted 5 layers of flooring to remove. Then realized floor was dropping 1" in 8' opposite direction of drain. Decided to rip out entire floor and sister joists to level. Yes I know the joists should be 16oc and they are not.
 

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General Contractor
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Discussion Starter · #5 · (Edited)
Final product pictures:
I used the schlueter trim but did not have the corners so I mitered them. I actually like it better. Cleaner.

Won't ever do the glass block with the plastic crappy track that they lock into. Mortar would be easier, faster and more professional looking.

The glass tiles were $35 for a 12x12, cut down I was able to get three out of one sheet. Unfortunately, need to remove each tile from the glue sheet since the company was so sloppy with spacing. Also, thickness of glass tile was less than porcelains so I needed to bring out the bed with thinset the day before setting the glass to flush it up.

Shower valve is Delta. Majority of products purchased on Amazon. Kohler toilet is dual flush and has a unique mounting template with a rubber sleeve that the base fits over.
 

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General Contractor
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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
More of the final product. Total time was about 5 weeks. Estimate of 28 days got blown out due to wait time for granite fabrication and the glass company placed the hinges in wrong location.

Final cost was $27k.:clap::clap::clap::clap:
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 · (Edited)
Picture #1....door is crooked....:whistling:laughing::laughing:

is the mountain money over or under?....:laughing::clap::whistling

other than that not too bad......:thumbsup:
It's really embarrassing to get kudos on the before product:laughing:

Money was more than sufficient! The HO is type to always ask if I have enough money or if I need more!!!

A couple of notes:
Yes the floor joists were 22 oc after sistering, but no deflection since there was a 4x6 running under them creating a 4' span + 3/4" ply + 1/4 hardibacker then tile.

Really important to know size of mirrors, backsplash and vanity lights prior to roughing in electrical. Fortunately it all fell into place. Just a little tight on the right receptacle.

Never know what to expect inside the walls. Shampoo niche designed for std 2x4 wall. These lath and plaster were 2x3. Lucky there was a closet on the other side, now with a raised box framed mirror.:whistling

Walls were so out of plumb and horrible texture it was easier to start from scratch and rip off all the lath yielding a clean canvas. Also made electrical and plumbing faster.

Customer really knew what they wanted up front during our first meeting. I was the only contractor they spoke to and never got any other bids. All I needed to do was create a spa like atmosphere in a 7x9 box. They wanted to convert to two sinks and have a linen tower. Other than that I had free reign on design and verified my ideas with them through similar pictures on Houzz.com.

They will be listing the home for sale in the next month. This was not a flip.

Any comments and criticism would be much appreciated. This is the only way I can learn and get better.
 

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Looks pretty good overall. Some of the design stuff I'm not in love with - the bench extending past the shower, the bar in the shower, the location of the outlets, glass blocks, but most of that is just personal taste. Also, I'd say to not char the wood when soldering, it comes off as unprofessional. Put some aluminum foil behind the joint or buy one of these: http://www.amazon.com/Bernzomatic-H...8917264&sr=8-1&keywords=soldering+heat+shield
They work great.
 

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While design can be "personal" there are some universal principles that can help you with your next project. I'm not trying to be personal here, as I think you did a great job! Some of these things are probably constraints from the homeowner, and a bit of it is my interpretation of design principles, so take it in the spirit it's offered please. :)

Lighting in a bath from over the mirror like that is harsher than if you had used sconces to either side of the mirrors. You've got the exposed bulb bottom casting glare and shadows. You still see a lot of sconces mounted on top of mirrors in older baths or retrofits, but many these days are changed to "uplights" bouncing light off of the ceiling to diffuse it's harshness.

You've got a lot of rectangular shapes here that don't relate well to each other. The mirrors, the two windows, the vanity bowls, the niche....they are all different sizes, and at different alignment heights. But, they aren't different enough for that to be a design feature, if you get what I'm saying here. Repetition of shapes is a good design principle to use, but when the elements aren't the same proportions, or alignment height, it makes it seem "off" and most people can't really tell you why it makes them slightly uneasy.

If you were to make a "feature" of the different sized rectangles, then some different sized rectangular accent tiles scattered here and there in the shower and floor to add to the asymmetry could have worked well, like a Mondrian painting. As is, I'd like to have seen more uniformity in the size and alignment. And perhaps some curves would have helped to relieve some of the tension in the not quite right rectangle look. Like oval mirrors. And some plumbing fixtures that weren't quite so hard edged and square as well.

And that brings me to the deco tile strip that you have running through the shower. (Gorgeous tile BTW!) It highlights the different heights of the square elements being off. And it's just a slash through the space, without being integrated into the rest of the design choices by perhaps continuing it as a chair rail around the room, or using it as the backsplash on the vanity wall. I would have preferred the niche be all of the deco tile, as well as have the strip be a bit smaller as there is something a bit off in the proportions of it's width as well. Or perhaps it's accented by the fact that it's such a contrasting element with the tile surrounding it. That contrast could have perhaps been used to frame some of those rectangles and create the illusion to fool the eye that you were dealing with similar size elements.

And just as a personal preference bit, nothing to do with "design", I prefer a toilet alcove to have tile behind that toilet, either as wainscotting or the whole alcove being done. It's just so much easier to clean! :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
@ Live Oak, Thanks for taking such an in depth review of my project. I appreciate you taking the time and for prefacing your comments regarding the personal preference of design and not necessarily what was done incorrectly. I agree, much is just personal taste.

HO was very flexible and went with my suggestions. Many based on staying on budget and the space I had to work with. For example: I had hoped to install 3 sconces on either side of the mirrors but with the linen tower and only 8' to work with and existing placement of studs it was not going to happen. HO picked the vanity lights, I just told them what size would work. I like what you stated about the indirect lighting and will consider that in the future.

Customer identified several photos on Houzz.com and I mixed and matched elements that they preferred from those photos. That is how I arrived at the extended bench through the glass enclosure, the glass blocks on opposing walls, cabinet color and style, square vessel sinks, etc. My approach to this contemporary style was to find items that where square/rectangle. I never considered the different sizes, elevations, orientation setting the room off in an uneasy way. I do appreciate you mentioning that concept.

I have to admit. I am ignorant when it comes to art and had to google Mondrian. That is not the look I was going for and personally do not consider that art.:rolleyes: I know it is, but I would not pay for it or want it hanging in my home.:no: Again, I do understand what your suggesting and with more experience may be able to implement those basics in future remodels.

Yes, the glass accent tile is beautiful! Customer selected. Design layout was my idea. As you prefaced, much stated is personal opinion and not something that is right or wrong. I like the idea of using the tile for a backsplash and helping tie the elements together from the shower to the vanity. Sometimes we have to consider the left over granite available for that purpose, time and money. Granite was the quick and cheaper method for a backsplash.

I agree with tiling behind the toilet or the entire alcove as I will doing that in my own master bath when I get a break in the schedule. Just concerned that it comes off too commercial looking.

Once again, thanks for the constructive feedback as it is welcomed and educational.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Texas,
Wow, I did not even think about that. This is the only photo I have from the back of the mounting. Sorry I don't have one from the front. I basically used a brass elbow with the mounting ears screwed into the 2x4 blocking. The tough part was getting it soldered square and level.

Please explain how I should have provided proper support. I don't think anyone is going to hang from it but they may start hanging wet rags or towels:sad:
 

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Talking Head
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It looks like you gave the HO just what they wanted. The little ones are always more work than the big ones.

I personally think the glass block was a good idea for opening up the room and bringing in more light.

I'm not a fan of vessel sinks but they are popular with the HO's so that's what you put in.
 

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Since you already know about the design issues I won't say anything there.... I agree that the charing on the wood is a bit much and does look unprofessional, changing the direction you torch using tin foil and always have a spray bottle of water near you.

I think the rest of it you pulled off very nicely.
 
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