Thursday, January 17, 2013

Making Changes

One day, mark my words, I am going to use this Mexican tile Mosaic from Tierray Fuego.
I'm thinking for the outside wall of the sun room we would like to build. A long way off, but my ideas usually stick with me for a really long time. I can then parade around in my Mexican boots (I'll post a photo one of these days) and feel right at home. 

I've been totally besotted with Spanish style homes, studying the home of architects Wallace Neff and George Washington Smith. Our Florida home was built in 1936 in the Monterey style with a definite Spanish influence. Original details such as the iron railings, tiled windowsills and arched hallways were left intact, and I embrace those old details.

The kitchen in this house underwent a very extensive renovation before we purchased it. Custom built cabinets, blue eyes granite etc. fabulous and I loved it all. But then disaster stuck and a leak ruined the base cabinets and caused a mold problem in the wall board behind. 

Mold experts arrived. Insurance adjusters arrived. Along with a slew of contractors and workman who removed the cabinets, the walls, the mold etc.
 And now we have a bare kitchen ready for the rebuild, that has now passed all the mold tests, and the house has passed air quality testing.
Did I mention they broke the granite taking it out? 
This is harvested 3 months a year in the Canadian Arctic. The original owners told it it cost them $7500.00. I asked the contractor to save it. I will have my neighbor (a fabulous carpenter) build tables with it or a bar, with the salvage.

The Insurance Company felt that replacing one slab of granite would not be acceptable since it would be newer looking than the rest, so they approved a complete re-do. Sink and all.
So....we insisted they save the cabinet faces and doors. The boxes will be rebuilt. The counters are being changed to honed Cararra, the tap which leaked is being switched out, the sink replaced and I am getting rid of the garbage disposal while I am at it. Plus I need new back splash tile.

The sad thing is, I really loved this kitchen. But since I am forced to re-do it, I am adding a few things like crackle finished subway tile, white marble, an old fashioned tap etc to give it a bit of an older look in keeping with the house.

And, I'm adding some Mexican Tile. Yep...I can't resist.
Hopefully in a couple of weeks I can show how I am "aging" the new kitchen a bit.
And yes, another hair pulling project managed from afar.

The newly renovated kitchen. Now partially ruined by a leak.

Original tiled windowsill.

Decorative ironwork on the bedroom balcony

Original windows and shutters

Archway in upstairs hall.


  1. Oh that kitchen is/was so beautiful. But I do like the idea that the possibility of making it more yours, more what you like stylewise has been offered, aside from the mess and aggravation.
    I agree, Spanish style is wonderful. When I lived in LA, I had a Spanish house from the 1930's, arches everywhere, terracotta tile roof, it was wonderful. And you are definitely in the town where that style will blend in beautifully !
    Good luck with everything .. has the old plumber been punished yet ?

  2. Oh Chania, surely this will go more smoothly and less stressfully than the pool! Will you have your "spycam" in the kitchen? Your plans sound wonderful and I look forward to the finished product. Your insurance provider sounds quite reasonable and you are fortunate they have been so cooperative. In your first picture under the title "When Disaster Strikes", I saw something completely different. In my "I live in the land of earthquakes" mind, I took the cactus to be a large crevice in that beautiful wall. It always pays off to look twice! Ann

  3. Sorry to hear about all the damage in your kitchen! But in a way, maybe it will be a blessing in disguise since you'll be able to pick out finishes to your taste instead of what was there when you bought it. It's always something I struggle with when we've bought homes - recently redone kitchens or bathrooms totally not to my taste but such a shame to tear them up. This gives you the perfect excuse! btw: your insurance company sounds amazing!

  4. It is a shame you had a leak in that kitchen. Mold must be taken care of though. I love the Mexican tiles and they would look fabulous near your pool. I also like the cottage review you did on the last post. It was a sweet space.

  5. Oh, I envy you that kitchen. Glad you got rid of the mold. I'm allergic to it. Had that happen to me once too.

  6. Hi Chania, I think the Mexican Mosaic is a bit too busy for my eyes, but I do LOVE everything else. Thanks for participating in the Ontario Blogger's day. Hope you find a moment or two to drop over to visit everyone else who was "linked" up there. xx

  7. I love that Mexican Tile Mosaic! Gives the effect of a bricked wall almost. It will really enliven your sun room!!

  8. Oh I love the Mexican Tile Mosaic also. Oh your home is beautiful. B

  9. Me too . . . love the Mexican tile . . . quite the journey you have been with the house from afar . . .
    The mold problem had to be death with, now a clean slate and time for Raz Design!

  10. As lovely as your kitchen already is, I'm sure it's going to be amazing after your reno! Going with a Spanish look is a great idea, I can't wait to see it when it's done:)

  11. What a shame but what fun ahead. Chania this place is already gorgeous but I cannot wait to see what you do!!!

  12. Best of luck to you as you embark on another project from far away. This change, like most, will be both a challenge and an opportunity. In the end I am sure it will be as stunning as the pool project. When it comes to homes and design, you have a certain Midas touch-- everything turns golden under your tutelage.


I love to read each and every comment and are thrilled that you take the time to send one. Thank you so much. Chania