11 November 2008

Upstairs Bathroom Details: Structural Support

You may have noticed that the new bathroom looks a lot bigger. That's because it is.

We bumped the wall where the door is out into the hallway. This gave us another 16" or so in the bathroom, and we didn't really loose anything but dead space in the hall. We considered it carefully, too. We didn't want to find that we'd made it impossible to get furniture in. This didn't impact that at all, mostly because the chimney stack was already there. That's another plus. The bathroom doesn't have heating, so by moving the door wall, we've now got two sides of the chimney in the bathroom. And when the hot water is running, like when you're in the shower, the chimney gets hot enough to warm your towel! That nice structural beam had to stay, but I don't think it looks out of place. Or, maybe I'm just telling myself that so I feel better.

Another place we gained space was the ceiling. Bill started to level the old ceiling when we had the bathroom gutted, and he realized that it was going to be a lot of tedious work. He asked me if it would be okay to take the framework down and start from scratch. I'll bet Bill got nervous when he saw the gleam in my eye. I had an idea. Since we had to tear it down anyway, could we raise the ceiling? Pretty please? At only 7', it always felt claustrophobic, and Lewis' hair grazed the light fixture. So Bill agreed that would be best all around, and I couldn't be happier.

One last place we expanded was the knee wall. As it turns out, there was over a foot of dead space between the bathroom and the back bedroom's cubby. Just dead space, not being used for anything. Of course, you can't actually stand there, because of the slope of the roof, but I got my longed-for shampoo shelf and plenty of extra elbow room in the shower. It really makes all the difference. The whole bathroom feels so spacious, even considering its size.

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