Northwest Renovation Magazine

A Home Improvement Magazine


After traveling to Italy and enjoying a dinner cooked in a wood fired Pompeii oven, I had a dream to build my own oven. The dream went on the back burner until I visited Portland and enjoyed pizza at Ken’s Artisan Pizza; again I desired my own oven. Fast forward five years and a relocation to Portland. I finally decided I was in the right place to build my oven. Doing the research and consulting with my son’s employer, located in Seattle, who built his own oven, I figured it out and started the... more

YIPPEE!!! It is finally spring…finally! The daffodils and tulips are blooming, the grass is getting greener, the evenings are getting longer, and it is starting to get warmer. Although it has not been a particularly chilly winter, I am more than ready to run headlong into spring. I think what I am most excited about this spring is color. Color and lots of it! I really, really love color, especially orange, which is a bit ironic considering that I cannot bring myself to wear anything except black.... more

Next time you need a new sconce or dome light, try thinking outside the (big) box (store). Anybody can buy those lights! You want something different. You didn’t realize it before, but you do. You want something old. Something used, refurbished, re-wired. And I’m here to help you! While new is good, and it certainly has its place (new underwear comes to mind), it can lack character. And there’s also the danger of new being homogenous. Homogenized milk is good. Homogenized light fixtures... more

I am ostensibly rebuilding my deck at the moment. In reality, however, I’m remodeling my back yard. I will have a new and bigger deck, plus new paths, new fence, a patio for my containers, and more. It’s a ginormous project. And, I’m trying to use primarily salvaged materials. I like the low-impact feeling and look I get from using salvage and I love the challenge of turning salvage into a beautiful space. If you don’t know, I have purchased about 30,000 pounds of salvaged metal from... 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

Boys’ Fort, the design team of Richard Rolfe and Jake France, loves summer in Portland. “You can LIVE outside…just briefly,” jokes Rolfe. Highlighting a recent design for an outdoor living space, Rolfe and France illustrate how they incorporate salvage and vintage items into their designs to create a one-of-a-kind look. “When someone walks into your home, you don’t want him or her to feel like they’ve just walked into a Pottery Barn catalog. You want them to feel intrigued... more

The truth is that although older homes are beautiful and charming, they aren’t as accommodating to today’s lifestyle. We do more work from home. We have man caves, media rooms, home gyms, project rooms, and generally want our homes to be our own little versions of paradise. If we want the charming old bungalow we are going to have to adapt it, bend the house, and make it the home we need it to be. We love the old telephone cubby, the thick paneled pocket doors, the old wobbly doorknobs, the vintage... more

Springtime is finely here, and with it brings the need for many of us to clean out the old. This often includes remodeling, whether it’s a full-on construction/rebuild or a small project like updating a favorite piece of furniture. By taking a chair or table, having it stripped and refinished, a room can take on a whole new, fresh look and feel. If a home project involves something on a larger scale such as kitchen cabinets or woodwork, these can be removed and taken to be stripped at the only... more

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