Northwest Renovation Magazine

A Home Improvement Magazine


When remodeling clients’ homes, one of the primary challenges we contractors encounter is mold. Pooled moisture leads to mold and mildew, often followed by bacteria, which introduces the possibility of termites and other vermin. While you may have entered the home expecting to take down and rebuild based on the customer’s plans, your job can suddenly change from remodeler to cleanup specialist. Handling mold and preventing further infestations are essential parts of a job well done, so employing... more

“More is better” has been losing popularity in our increasingly downsizing culture, but making it work in our homes can be tricky. We have learned to eat less, but more nutritionally. We know to conserve more natural resources and waste less in unnecessary purchases. Our culture has embraced the idea of frugality, yet we find it difficult to practice when it comes to home design. Just as people need information to change their daily eating and consumption habits, so we need to learn to live well... more

Whether you need a new showerhead or just want a change, there are hundreds of choices out there. There are at least four different kinds of showerheads: fixed, rain, slider hand-held, and multi-everything. The fixed showerhead has several adjustments, such as for a strong flow, pulsing spray, and massage action. The slider shower systems have a slider bar and a hand held showerhead. What I call the multi-spray is usually a combination of the fixed with the slider, and also body jets. Delta Arzo... more

Vintage fixtures have become increasingly rare with the successive remodels that have become so common in the past few decades. Perfectly functional vintage fixtures have given way to the latest and greatest fashion statements, being promoted by designers and those in the business of selling product. Untouched Victorian bathrooms are exceedingly rare, with 1920s and 1930s bathrooms and kitchens in the next-rarest category. It’s more common for 1940s and 1950s bathrooms to survive. But now, even... more

When was the last time you took a bath? Was it in a standard tub-shower combination, or were you using a soaking or jetted tub? Soaking and jetted tubs offer many benefits as far as relaxation and stress relief are concerned. However, we hear a lot of complaints from homeowners about standard tub-shower combination units, from the step-up being too high to the tubs themselves being too short or too shallow. Real estate markets may indicate that having a bathtub in your home will help resale value,... more

My home’s inclusion in last year’s (2012) annual City of Portland, OR “Build It Green! Home Tour” occurred for many reasons. My design focus resulted from very practical considerations: I require accessibility because of my walking disability. The six-year journey from buying a very tatty fixer in September 2006 to its present state as my own Shangri-La also resulted in some very personal life perceptions for myself. I viewed many homes and none had any inkling of accessibility.... more

Wall decorations go back to the days when people lived in caves. There, on the stone walls, are the images of hands and animals. Mystical beings look out at us as artistic memories of that time and place. Although the Chinese were using decorated rice paper to embellish their walls for thousands of years, the story of wallpaper in Europe started with the use of beautiful tapestries that were hung to both bring beauty into the space and act as a form of insulation. Castles with stone walls were cold!... more

It is one of those dreaded things in life, when the toilet doesn’t flush. At first, you jiggle the handle and it works for a while. Deep down, you know that you really should go down to A-Boy and buy a new flapper. You let it go a little longer, until you have to jiggle it almost every time. The procrastination is starting to get to you, so you go and buy a flapper for less than four dollars. It sits in the trunk of your car for a week and then your wife says, “We have relatives coming to visit... more

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