Northwest Renovation Magazine

A Home Improvement Magazine

Hydrotherapy has come a long way since its inception in the 1800s. Until the Jacuzzi Brothers came out with the first home unit in the 1950s, hydrotherapy was used in hospitals, mostly for patients with rheumatoid arthritis. The first unit was revolutionary in its day but primitive by today’s standards. It was a pump that hooked onto the edge of an existing bathtub to create the whirlpool effect. In the 1960s Jacuzzi came out with a whirlpool similar to the ones we know today. That unit had integral... more

Anyone with an interest in historic architecture will find Newport, RI, among the most interesting cities in America to visit. I was there for the first time this October, taking an all-day side trip from the Boston area. I will return again, as one single day was not enough time to take in all the city’s architectural treasures. I will share with you, good readers of Northwest Renovation magazine, some of the things that I saw and learned in my one day in this remarkable city. The Breakers,... more

Looking to get more living space out of your home and don’t know whether to go up, down, or out? We asked Anne DeWolf, co-owner and designer of Arciform LLC for her advice on what a homeowner needs to know before you “go below.” If you’re like most people who own older homes, your existing basement is a dark twisting maze of ductwork, low-hanging pipes, and wires, with limited headroom and a jumbled assortment of water heaters, furnaces, and chimneys (maybe even your... more

On October 1, 2010, ECOpdx hosted over 100 guests for the grand opening of their 10,000-square-foot  design shop in southeast Portland. Local members of the woodworking and sustainability community as well as valued ECOpdx customers were in attendance. The shop is a co-op venture with local woodworkers and craftspeople. “The idea is to pool our resources with local craftsmen to provide our customers with more services at better prices,” said Darren Morgan, co-owner of ECOpdx. The addition of... more

“Do you have a favorite flower?” a client asked me recently while working on a garden design. I’m not sure I’d thought of it before, you know, having a favorite flower. I mean, there are so many out there, so how would you really pick just one? But when the question was asked, surprisingly enough, I was able to give a sure and quick answer. Of course, dahlias! The dahlia has been grown, hybridized, and shipped from Holland for generations. I guess you could really consider the... more

Remember the tree house you had growing up? Or the one you always wanted? You can have it now. In the summer of 2010, Matt Siegel and his company Building Blocks, LLC, were presented with a golden, albeit unusual, opportunity: to build a children’s playhouse. While Siegel is well versed in the construction and renovation of family homes, this particular kind of project was a first. The playhouse was planned to be auctioned at a fundraiser for Dornbecher Children’s Hospital. (It sold... more

The Arts & Crafts or Craftsman movement came to the U.S. from England around the early 1900s as a reaction to the “soulless machine-made production” of the Industrial Revolution with the belief that aesthetics would help society to be more “rational and harmonious.” Many tile artisans considered the machine as the cause of “repetitive and mundane evils” and encouraged the movement towards handcraft work. The goal was for more authentic design and decoration. Design elements of this... more

Interior decorating books recommend perfectly matching the colors of paint with existing decor. As the gallons of unused paint turned in for recycling reveals, matching colors is easier said then done. Paint manufacturers advertise that they can match any color (even that of a competitor) using a computer matching system. Using a spectrophotometer, a shoebox-sized instrument connected to a computer, the color emitted from a sample is measured electronically. Each wavelength of light reflected from... more

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