Saturday, July 05, 2014

Our House

In the middle of our street.

We had some people over today for a post fourth of July fourth of July cookout (a friend on Facebook was very particular that just cooking on a grill was not in and of itself barbecue).  Over the course of the afternoon I wound up talking about some of the folks that helped out with our home renovation.  I don't think I've ever posted about them and so I figured I would take one of these posts and hit the highlights.

The GC on our job was Sparkle Construction.  Greg took on the job from another contractor that had done design drawings and bid the project.  Sparkle took the job fixed fee and pretty much managed to toe the line on that without many of the home show "oh by the way" moments.  They did demolition, framing, insulation, drywall, moulding, flooring and tile; as well as manage painting, plumbing, hvac, fireplace, and electric.  All in all we were very please with their work.

Greg also hooked us up with some other subs worth calling out.

Kellner Millwork did our staircase renovation.  I have to say that overall this was one of the most difficult parts of the project to realize.  Mostly it was about trying to do something really different and coming up against the residential building code.  In the end though we got a really special highlight to our first floor and we're really happy with it.

Another vendor that came through Greg was Rex Glass.  Rex did a KILLER shower panel for us.  We had very specific things we wanted to see in the bathroom we remodeled and Rex did a great job.

We also worked with a designer on our job.  We had looked for a consulting architect with no luck and went it alone with Greg helping on the contractor side and Maggie from mad Designs helping on the design side.  Maggie was great.  She didn't fight us on our particular aesthetic and really worked with Mrs. TANBI as a collaborator.  The results here were also great - the link above is actually our kitchen on her website.

Maggie also brought along a float of good vendors.

Top of that list was East Hills Cabinet.  We'd originally talked to East Hills about being GC of the whole job, but after seeing it they declined saying it was more than they typically did.  That, I think, was a good sign right off the bat.  East Hills did the cabinets in the kitchen and the vanity in the bathroom.  We've since had them out to do some office built ins too.  Good price.  Great work.

Maggie sent us to look at tile at The Tile Collection.  This place is ridiculous, just room after room after room of tile finishes.  Mrs. TANBI says "they have all the tile."  Ultimately we skimped on our kitchen backsplash (we got that at a store you may have heard of: The Home Depot).  There were some budget issues in this area and some lead time issues, but again, overall very happy.  Plus this is a neat place just to look around.

We also got Don's Appliances through Maggie - or maybe we found them on our own but she works with them all the time.  If we hadn't been fortunate we probably wouldn't have wound up using them, but when we went to see their stuff at the Pittsburgh Home Show we became enamored with a suite of appliances they'd brought to the show as display items and they cut us a good deal.

For what it's worth, we also found our original contractor (who lead us to Sparkle) at the home show.  If you're doing a renovation there's no better one stop shop.

Last on this hit parade is another mad Designs referral: Typhoon Lighting.  Most of the lighting in the renovation turned out to just be recessed cans.  Sparkle handled that scope of service.  But there were two more prominent fixtures: one for over the stairs and one for over the dining room table.  Mrs. TANBI and I did a lot of online shopping for what we eventually bought, but Typhoon handled the purchase for us and were great about helping us find what we wanted.

So that's the cast of our renovation.  I hope those folks are around should we choose to do more work in the future.

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