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Old-School Values

Modern Ideas

Professional Execution of Small to Mid-Sized Projects - We give a personal touch to the jobs the "big guys" don't want.


Specializing in Bath & Kitchen Remodeling/​Repairs

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Our Thoughts

An ongoing series of thoughts, advice, & tribulations of remodeling

As always, we use no stock images

Custom Fireplace Mantel

Summer 2015

The homeowner had to have the existing fireplace mantel removed to meet lead safety laws. The removal was accomplished by a licensed, moderate risk deleader. The homeowner couldn't find anything they liked & asked if we could fabricate something for them. 


Since the homeowner wanted a painted mantle, it freed us up to use less expensive materials. The surround is actually three pieces of 3/4" MDF - one on each side and a full piece across the top. The design was accomplished by stacking moulding available at local vendors. It matches the design they wanted on the stair risers. It was a fun piece to make & the homeowner was very satisfied.


If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to email us at [email protected]

Safe, secure handrails

Summer 2016

We were called by homeowner to replace the handrail around the architectural opening between the first & second floors. When I got there, I was shocked the code inspector didn't fail the home upon completion. 


Where to start - First, The balusters were anywhere from 5"-10" apart the when code calls for spacing no larger than 4-3/8". Second, the height was only 30" which is significantly less than code's required 36". Third, the entire structure was so loose I was able to pull it off with no tools!  


The homeowners priorities were: secure handrail for their two children under the age of 3, modern looking, and something that would not have to be rebuilt when they replaced the flooring in the future. They also needed it completed ASAP so we couldn't use materials that needed to be ordered. Working with the homeowner, we were able to fabricate a post design that they liked using MDF and "box store" mouldings. 


When we removed the existing railing, we found two reasons it was not secure -- there was no bracing behind the drywall holding the handrail to the wall and the only thing holding the balusters in the floor was the 3/4" or so end of the baluster. Thank goodness the previous owner did not have children! The home's builder, who shall remain nameless, did not block the opening correctly and therefore, there was nothing to secure a post to on each corner of the opening.


Using 1" plywood, we were able to make a sturdy, u-shaped support. We attached the posts to it using fabricated metal & GRK 4" fasteners. (Those posts aren't going anywhere!) From there, we attached u-shape to the existing floor blocking using 4" GRK fasteners. We removed drywall & placed blocking so the handrail would have a solid attachment point.


It took some thinking "outside the box" but the new handrail is up to code & exceeded the homeowner's expectations. If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to email us at [email protected]


You can find the finished project here on our Projects page under Before/After.

Dream Kitchen

Fall 2016

This is our most recently completed project & the owner couldn't be happier! 


The flooring (6"x36" porcelain tile) was purchased at Home Depot. The cabinets are Ikea Sektion with a couple of cabinets we made to use the otherwise dead space on each side of the sink. We also came up with a unique attachment method so the homeowner could have the cabinets as high as possible but still have a decorative moulding on top. The back splash is beveled subway tile with decorative tile cut into strips to break up the white tile. The paint is Benjamin Moore and was purchased at Debsan in Natick. I highly suggest getting your paint from Debsan. Their customer service is excellent! 


If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to email us at [email protected]


You can find the before picture of the project here on our Projects page under Before/After.