First Floor Remodel: Kitchen, Bathroom, Bedroom, Living, & Laundry Room

We recently completed a large job for our clients, Zach & Carisse. They own a beautiful 1930’s home in College Station that has been in their family for decades, so they know it will be their forever home. They decided to remodel almost the entire first floor to fit their growing family’s needs so they could continue to enjoy their home for years to come.

Below are brief “before and after” sketches of the layout changes that were made to the first floor.

  • We converted the original garage into a new living room, and opened it up to the kitchen.
  • We expanded the bathroom into part of the original garage to make space for a second bathroom entrance and larger vanity.
  • We expanded the kitchen pantry by relocating the bedroom closet behind it.
  • We moved the water heater in the garage to an exterior tank-less one.
  • We created a new laundry / mud room out of part of the back porch, moving the washer and dyer out of the garage.
  • We used part of the back porch for the newly relocated bedroom closet.


To start, we needed to raise the floor in the existing garage so it would be level with the rest of the house to create the new living space.

They eventually plan to build a new front porch extending almost the entire length of the house. In the mean time, to stay within budget and up to building code, we constructed a simple front porch at the new entrance.

We took apart the back side of the garage to replace the old siding, add two new windows, and install French doors leading out to the back yard.


Below is a view from the inside of the garage. The door pictured here leads into the old kitchen.

The back corner of the original garage: the door pictured below leads to the back yard.


New sub floor is being laid, and the framework has been done for the new windows and French doors.


We opened up the load-bearing wall between the original garage and kitchen. We wrapped the exposed beams in knotty alder, hung a sleek black ceiling fan from the center, and installed recessed lighting.

Two new windows and a new front door were also added to the front side of the original garage to create a new front entrance to their home.


Below is a view from the dining room, through the kitchen, into the original garage.

The same view is pictured below after the remodel was complete. The doorway down the hall on the left wall leads to the bathroom, which we expanded and created this second entrance to.


A view of the new bathroom entrance, so guests can avoid walking through the bedroom to use the bathroom.

Below is a view from the bedroom, through the bathroom, and into the new living space.


We completely remodeled the bathroom.

We expanded the bathroom to make room for a larger vanity and second entrance. Zach and Carisse chose a vintage floor tile to keep with the style and age of their home. They chose to remove the extra small bath tub to create a walk-in shower with recessed soap nook and built in corner bench. We built a custom vanity to match the kitchen cabinets, installed a new granite counter top, and finished it off with subway tile and bronze fixtures and hardware.

Below is the original kitchen space. The doorway pictured on the left leads out into the original garage, where the floor has already been raised. (The nook to the right was built at some point to recess the refrigerator and allow for more space in the old kitchen.)


For the kitchen remodel, we kept the sink, range, and vent hood in the same places. The refrigerator was relocated to the front wall, dishwasher was relocated next to the sink, and a custom island was constructed for the center. Zach & Carisse chose a beautiful gray granite counter with bronze fixtures and black hardware. We built two floating shelves on either side of the vent hood for decorative storage.

Within the island, we built a microwave nook and custom storage, including a trash can drawer and a book shelf end cap.


We expanded the old pantry by removing the bedroom closet that was behind it. Zach & Carisse had reclaimed this door and had been storing it for the perfect opportunity; we hung it as a barn door. It is both beautiful and functional since the pantry opens up to the main walk way between the dining room, kitchen, and living room.


We hung French cleat shelving which can be easily moved around to fit various storage needs.


We created a new laundry / mud room out of part of their existing back porch. We created a place for a second fridge and mud sink in this space, as well. French doors were installed leading from the dining room into the laundry room where the pair of windows are below.


The remaining porch space on the back side of the new laundry room, through the door pictured below, became the new bedroom closet.


Zach and Carisse have a great eye for design and are a pleasure to work with. We are so thankful that they trusted us with their forever home. We know they will enjoy it for years and years to come.

Complete Home Remodel

Our client, Jim, had a rental property with water damage. They had to gut the entire kitchen and both bathrooms, and we were contacted to lead the remodels. We built custom cabinets for the kitchen and installed granite counters, arabesque tile backsplash, floating shelves, and new appliances. We also had the entire exterior of the home painted and installed new carpet in the bedrooms, and refinished the hardwood floors in the living spaces.

We removed the cabinet and accordion doors over the peninsula to open up the kitchen to the main living room.

We installed new custom vanities, linen storage, and granite counters to match the kitchen. Subway tile surround was installed in both showers.


It was such a pleasure to work with Jim and his family. We love how they chose finishes that give the home a clean and unique update without taking away from its mid-century style. If you or someone you know is interested in a rental property just a block from campus in the College Station historic district, check out their listing here:

Bathroom Remodel: Before & After

Our client, Justin, had an outdated and very tight bathroom. To the right of this shower stall was a narrow linen closet which was removed to make room for a much larger shower. We installed custom maple floating shelves and towel racks above the new toilet. The existing vanity and built-in storage unit was repainted and we replaced the top with a leather finished black granite counter. We love the way Justin’s tile choices came together: a gray wood-look tile for the floor, subway tile surround in the shower, and a small hexagon shower floor tile. In order to help out a friend financially, Justin decided to save some money on the remodel. He did much of the demo and painting himself, and did an excellent job. He is a great guy and we are thankful for the opportunity to work with him!

Kitchen Remodel: Before & After

We have been busy with quite a few kitchen & bathroom renovations over the past few months. Here’s a close look at one of our kitchen remodels we recently completed for our client, Dawn. It was a pleasure working with Dawn, and we are so pleased with the finished result.

We didn’t need to change much about the layout of this kitchen. We relocated the fridge to make room for a double oven, and relocated the sink from the corner of the peninsula to the center. We replaced the existing cabinets with new custom cabinets, floating shelves, appliances, paint, flooring, granite counters, new fixtures, and a custom vent hood. Dawn chose a leather finish for her granite counters, which gives it a more natural stone look. Traditionally, granite is smoothly finished and has a glossy sheen. The leather finish provides a matte look with a slightly rough texture. It almost feels like a hybrid between traditional granite & concrete, and is a great compromise for homeowners who are wanting a concrete look without it feeling too industrial. We love the way it looks in Dawn’s kitchen with the other natural elements she chose.

As a carpentry company, we like to bring unique elements of custom carpentry to all of our remodels. We constructed Dawn’s vent hood & floating shelves out of common pine. While this type of wood is not typically used for staining, we wanted to use a type of wood that would only hold stain on certain parts of the grain, in order to accentuate the texture. Dawn loved the look of the sample we created, and I think the end result is a perfect contrast to the gray & white color palate in the rest of her kitchen.

Have a look at Dawn’s kitchen!

We also updated Dawn’s fireplace to keep with the style of her new kitchen. We replaced the outdated wood & tile with painted brick and built a custom mantle out of knotty alder wood.

Dawn’s vision for her kitchen turned out beautifully, and we are thankful for the opportunity to help her create a space she loves!

Kitchen Remodel: Week 3!


Renovations continued smoothly at Andy & Carole’s home. Week three began with the installation and grouting of their tumbled marble back splash. Tumbled marble is exactly what it sounds like: large pieces of marble have been broken apart, then placed in a large drum along with grit, crushed stones, water, and large pieces of cement. As the drum spins, the elements inside tumble, creating holes and cracks in the marble, bringing out the natural beauty of the stone. I love the way the tumbled marble adds another natural element to their kitchen. It looks modern with a rustic twist, and really ties together the sage green cabinets and butcher block counter tops seamlessly.


For the south side of the kitchen we went with a more simple, white washed, wood plank back splash. Since this side of the kitchen is a dry area, a completely water proof back splash was not necessary. The cabinets are also more shallow than the other side of the kitchen, so a thinner back splash allowed for more prep space, and helped keep costs down by not using as much stone material.


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Throughout the week we kept adding clear coats to the counter tops to keep them water tight. Between each coat we sanded lightly to make sure the next coat would stick. I love how the color and sheen of the counters turned out. Buck also created some floating butcher block shelves in the corner of the kitchen. (Step by step post to follow). Andy & Carole were hoping for open shelving in the corner, and wanted it to stand out rather than blend in with the rest of the cabinets. We were able to use some of the scrap material from the counters to wrap their shelves and give this custom look.


The vent hood and new gas range were installed on the east side of the kitchen, and the dishwasher and a french door oven were installed on the north side. We also installed the beautiful chrome faucet in the wall above the farm sink.


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With the back splash installed, counter tops sealed, and most of the appliances installed, it is finally looking like a functional kitchen again! We love the way Andy & Carole’s design came together, and are so pleased with a smooth and beautiful kitchen remodel. Stay tuned for a step-by-step post of our floating butcher block shelves, and some final pictures of their completed kitchen!