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Baths and beyond
Four designers create custom looks for homeowners



Grand entrance

William Pape wanted to create a larger master bath befitting the architecture of his home, and with the help of Phil Nuelk of Philip’s Construction and Rory Palubiski of Fein Design LLC, he now has a sumptuous bathroom oasis. "Having a really nice bathroom adds to the quality of my life every day," says Pape. Palubiski helped the team readdress the floor plan by rearranging several rooms to accommodate the impressive bathroom. Nuelk then worked with Pape through the material- and finish-selection process and constructed a space full of classic details and spa-like amenities. "It deviates from the architecture of the home but has classic elements," describes Pape. Those elements include a series of arches that lead the eye to an Ultra Air Tub, the focal point of the space. A barrel vault ceiling adds a dramatic effect to the steam shower, and the German glass door enclosure offers a view of the custom listello detail designed by Pape. Portoro marble with its black background and ribbons of white and gold is used on several surfaces and complements the flooring, which is a basket weave design of honey onyx and black marble tiles. A brass towel warmer, as well as brass sconces with baroque and alabaster elements, enhances the sophisticated palette of gold, cream and black. And last but not least, two oval-shaped mirrors, hand-painted in a baroque style, and stunning embossed columns are additional elements that infuse this bathroom with class and elegance.

Light and airy

Jerry Scott and Jody Kaiser-Scott were looking to gain a little extra space in their bathroom while creating a design that better suited their home and master bedroom. A.J. Simon, a design consultant with S.J. Janis Co., worked with the couple to maximize the floor plan by eliminating a closet and adding a shower with a frameless enclosure. While removing the closet helped the couple gain functional square footage, the glass enclosure provided a visual effect, making the room feel more spacious. When it comes to the new look of the bathroom, Kaiser-Scott believes it now has a spa-like design with dark cherry woods, brushed nickel hardware, a classic cream colored tub, mushroom colored walls and textural Italian tile details. The multiple shower heads and air tub also provide spa-like amenities, while the floating vanity design creates a unique night light. A vessel bowl atop a translucent Avonite countertop glows with light from below, and the cool blue-green hue offers just the right touch of color to complement the earthly palette of this soothing bathroom. "S.J. Janis was able to reflect our sensibility in the space while incorporating the 1949 architectural elements of the house," says Kaiser-Scott. Simon agrees: "We streamlined the design with simple yet strong lines."

Secret spaces

For Elise and Brad Roudebush, their bathroom renovation project was an investment they considered for practical, health and aesthetic reasons. While it was a small space with two entry points, the couple worked with Ken Connor, CR, of K. Steven Remodeling, and Brooke Britsch of Design Resource Center to maximize the space and give it a face-lift. "We reutilized the space in a more efficient manner," says Connor. "We made larger, more accessible storage, relocated switches to more convenient locations, properly ventilated the space, added dimmers to the lights and readdressed the heating in the room, including in-floor electric under the ceramic tile." Says Britsch, "Storage was a big issue. We needed to increase storage, concealing things not for everyday use while creating easy access for other items." Open shelving that faces the vanity provides easy-access storage out of sight from passers-by in the hallway. "I thought about how I use things and what I wanted to leave sitting out," says Elise Roudebush. "I wanted to make it really easy for our use." In terms of aesthetics, Britsch was inspired by the existing walnut used throughout the home and wanted to maintain that beauty and integrity while adding features that improved the life of the family. Despite the size of the space, the design team was able to accommodate a new tub with therapeutic features to comfort Elise’s back issues. Even the cats and dogs were considered, as special storage for litter boxes and other pet items was included in the design. With the dark, rich woodwork as an inspiration, Britsch wanted to keep everything else light and use glass to provide the illusion of a larger space. A combination of warm and cool tones in tobacco and sage green, as well as oil-rubbed bronze and brushed nickel metal finishes and crystal knob hardware, helped to achieve classic details and clean lines that complement the more traditional design of this home.

Bold statement

Paul and Katie Coogan embarked on several bathroom renovations in their home but for the master bathroom Katie Coogan wanted something different. "I wanted to get out of the box; I wanted something I normally wouldn’t pick out," she says. Jillaine Burton of Callen Construction Inc. helped her not only create a new look, but also make the most of a small space. The bathroom had two entry points, so Burton closed off one of the doors in order to accommodate linen cabinets and a rectangular shower with an angled door. This opens up the space and allows the person in the shower to exit the sumptuous spa-like experience into the heart of the bathroom. A window in the room provides a nice flood of natural light and combines with the new open floor plan to add to the spaciousness. With the plan altered, Burton worked with Coogan to get out of the box with her finish selections. The end result was a colorful surprise that complements the bedspread in the master bedroom. Burton took inspiration from a classic black-and-white checkerboard floor design but toned it down a bit to a deep charcoal and softer white to better suit Coogan’s style. She later covered the room in a reddish pink begonia hue to create a bold and colorful statement. Deep cherry cabinetry with black granite counters, a picture frame style medicine cabinet and brushed nickel and chrome metal finishes add to the classic feeling of the décor. A combination light fixture with three wall mounted lights and two pendants adds a dramatic look while improving illumination levels within the bathroom. "It can be challenging to help someone try something new. They have to be comfortable with it every day, so you need to be careful how far out of the box you take them," says Burton. Confirms Coogan: "I love everything, and now I can’t get my kids out of my bathroom."