Exposing Brick and Replacing Stairs

In addition to renovating the first floor living and dining room, we are completely gutting the second floor. This initially small facelift grew into a huge renovation of the first two floors. With older homes, unfortunately that is usually the case – a small job turns into a big one in a matter of days.

2 main features we are changing in this 100 year old house are 2 sets of stairs, and exposing the southern brick wall in the downstairs hall that leads upstairs. This drawing illustrates where we are exposing the brick, as well as the new stair design, which is being manufactured by a Toronto stair company – Royal Oak Stairs.

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Stairs are tricky to design yourself- it’s always best to get the help of a professional who understands the final outcome you are trying to achieve. It is also vital that your stairs follow the OBC, which is sometimes difficult in an older home. We designed this ‘guard’ made of interior lists, which will double as a railing and an art installation. After meeting with the manufacturer, we have sent in our final measurements and here are some photos that inspired us when creating our new white oak stairs.



Although it was the more expensive option, white oak stairs will match the new engineered hardwood perfectly compared to a red oak stair that is stained to look like white oak. There were endless choices for stair profiles, but we decided to keep it as modern and clean as possible, which is why we went with a ‘waterfall’ profile – which just means no nosing on each stair.

Here are the pictures of our hallway before the stairs are replaced. We were so happy to find that the brick was in good shape.


The process of exposing brick walls is fairly straight forward, but there are some steps you must take in order to achieve that move-in ready state. After demolition (whacking away at the plaster until it falls off), we wash the brick as best as possible, and because we intend to paint it, we first have to seal it with a strong primer called ‘Bulls Eye’.


Hopefully to finish with this look..


First coat already on!


The benefit of exposing brick is that it exposes the historical charm of a renovated house. It can add texture, warmth and potentially colour to any space. Spaces by Jacflash feels like having exposed brick is a ‘must have’ for city living.





Juxtaposing Victorian and Modern

One of our biggest projects yet is located on one of the residential side streets near Bloor and Ossington. This semi-detached home was built over 100 years ago, but over time and many different renovations, Spaces by Jacflash felt like it lacked the original character it deserves.

We love the idea of marrying two completely different styles to create a new aesthetic. For this living and dining room, we are installing panels with appliques and large moldings to the walls, and sleek modern furniture pieces. Here are some precedent pictures that really inspired us.



A common flaw of older homes are the small divided rooms and lack of natural lighting. We intended to solve these issues by opening the wall that separated the dining room and hallway and also added 2 modern windows on either side of the existing large arch way between living and dining.


We are so happy with how it is progressing downstairs. The windows we are adding will be matte black metal with no bevel on the glass. Here are some images of example windows; our order is currently in production.

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To create texture and interest to the walls, we are installing large panels with embellished corners throughout both living and dining room spaces. To solve the problem of a bulk head in the dining room, we had to get creative and make this eye sore beautiful. Instead of trying to hide it, we decided to make it part of a recessed ceiling, where we will have intricate moldings, pot lights and a ceiling medallion for the chandelier. Here are the drawings which illustrate the moldings that will be installed over the next couple of weeks.


A feature wall in the dining room will be an antiqued mirror installed behind one of the moldings. This large panel is centered between a window and the arch to the kitchen, as you can see in the drawing below! We wanted a wow factor that would also make the room feel larger. One of our favourite parts about having the mirror on this wall, is that the reflection will mainly be of our new modern windows.

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In this home, the first thing you see when you walk in are these main living areas. It takes just a few seconds for someone to form an opinion as soon as they walk through the front door. What does your space say about you? We wanted this space to speak to the owners of the home; a juxtaposition of styles that work together to create something new and beautiful.


Shoe Vault @ The Ritz

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Brought to you by the designers of Spaces by Jacflash, The Shoe Vault allows you to showcase your iconic shoe collection in a unique and stylish way. The Shoe Vault features a strong, clear, acrylic material with cutaway sides and a convenient hand slot. Both men’s and women’s sizes are available.


All Shoe Vault designs are made custom to fit your space. Recently, a resident of the Ritz Carlton asked for his own Shoe Vault in his large walk in closet. This client wanted to fit as many shoes as possible, without losing the amazing view.


We designed our biggest Shoe Vault bank yet with almost 100 shoe boxes. The clear acrylic takes away almost none of the view, and still leaves our client with ample dressing space between his built-in cabinets and his Shoe Vault system.


The L-shaped layout forced us to get creative by designing a custom corner unit. This gives him room for 3 additional boxes, as well as a counter top where he can display all of his latest accessories. The bases are also made of acrylic which comes in a variety of colours; this client chose a simple glossy black.


Assembling and cleaning is a breeze. We take into account all room ventilation and outlets so there are almost no tools required to put together your system. Cleaning our high-end acrylic requires you to use an ammonia-free glass and plastic cleaner, which we provide for you.

We cannot wait to do the photo shoot, and see how the final product looks with our client’s extravagant shoe collection!



Twin-Friendly Master Bedroom by Spaces by Jacflash

IMG_1337When a Toronto Dr. and mother of twins living in the GTA, asked for a bedroom makeover, we knew she needed a getaway from her busy life. With two 8-year-olds, there is not much time for relaxation. This oasis for her and her husband is going to be glamorous, but durable.

This large master suite is almost 14′ x 23′ so there is a ton of room for changes, but we wanted to keep the layout simple, and have a large dressing area because of her very full walk-in closet.

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One of the most challenging components to this room was working with her existing furniture pieces – which just so happen to be 2 huge custom made armoires, that don’t particularly match.

Armoire #1 & #2:armoires

We came up with a design that would unite her home’s eclectic style of traditional/boho/glam/beige to a sophisticated, put-together master bedroom. Hopefully to withstand the challenge of growing children and changing styles.

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The biggest change we made was to paint all baseboards, crown moldings, and doors a glossy black. This allows us to emphasize the scale of the room and ground the white airy walls. All new gold hardware, fixtures and accents give some sparkle and extravagance to an otherwise monochrome palette.

There is no need to go over the top with art that will break the bank in a bedroom, just go with a few pieces that inspires and delights you time and time again. For this client, we chose to blow-up some of her favourite family shots and a simple painting from a local HouseEleven artist.

Don’t overlook curtains! They are one of the key factors of you getting a good night’s sleep. This room has two very large windows that overlook a pool and beautiful pergola, so during the day when the curtains are open. We don’t want to distract from the hard-to-find Toronto backyard. That’s why we chose a light cool toned grey. But don’t be fooled, these curtains will black out any light on those lazy Sunday mornings to sleep in.

Choosing a bed is a big commitment, which is no wonder why our client has had a difficult time choosing which bed works for her and her husband. We gave her these 4 completely different options, that could all work in her space.

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The bedding will be simple and easy to manage – sometimes too many accent pillows can be overwhelming. That being said, don’t forget to take advantage of the opportunity for texture, especially in a monochromatically schemed room like this one. A key factor for bedding is to make sure it is comfortable, but also durable and easy to wash.

We are currently in the process of painting and ordering the finishing touches. We will be posting pictures and videos of the staging and putting together process, stay tuned… we cannot wait to unveil this room to our lovely client and to you!