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Tuesday, May 1, 2007

Brooklyn Garden Apartment: Before & After

Credit: All Photos, Blue Barn
I'll never forget the first time I laid eyes on this apartment. The salvaged french doors leading out to the garden instantly won me over. I could already see it looking like this in my mind's eye. But that took some imagination, because the apartment back then was raw. Check out the before and afters.

The PO was an architect, so while she did a lot of the heavy lifting, like new floors, new walls, and bless her, those salvaged french doors, it seemed she ran out of steam after that.

There was not even a real kitchen to speak of when I viewed it. Just this ancient stove, a dishwasher that didn't drain, and a fridge circa 1970 that did not get cool enough to make ice.

I made use of the vertical space with tall wall cabinets and Leibherr fridge. Putting the sink in the corner allowed me to put the tallest appliance, the refrigerator, in the one place that wouldn't block the line of sight. The cabinets are a discontinued line from Kraftmaid called Venicia. They have a high end look of a Poggenpohl, don't you think? I love the simple chrome pulls. The white recedes into the stark white of the walls, but the slate countertops and backsplash pull it dramatically forward again in just the right places. I'm really happy with the way this kitchen turned out.

A similar transformation took place in the bath. While the original did have a quaint peg-legged sink and clawfoot tub. The tub, however, was just 4 foot long. Even at 5'5", my knees were under my chin when I tried to bathe. And taking a shower cocooned one in reams of plastic shower curtain. In addition, the walls surrounding the shower were peeling paint - no tile, and obviously no up to code backer board. 

I put in Kohler jetted tub and frameless enclosure, along with Purist fixtures. The only thing I kept of the original was the herringbone floor.

Even the garden, while it boasted a giant composter, had no living green things - just a pit of river rocks.

Adding some real fence to the back, a few plant beds, and some deck furniture went a long way.

The hall closet had been completely monopolized by a stackable washer/dryer. 

I traded that in for a combo unit under the kitchen counter. Annexing some space from the bedroom to create a walk in closet. Organized = Happy!

It made the bedroom rather small, but it is front-facing and full of light.