Broken Can Be Beautiful: Spaces by Jacflash Experiments With Kintsugi

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Kintsugi (金継ぎ, きんつぎ, “golden joinery”), also known as Kintsukuroi (金繕い, きんつくろい, “golden repair”), is the Japanese art of repairing broken pottery with lacquer dusted or mixed with powdered goldsilver, or platinum, a method similar to the maki-e technique. As a philosophy, it treats breakage and repair as part of the history of an object, rather than something to disguise.

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The Japanese believe when something has suffered damage and has a history, it becomes more beautiful. It’s time we rethink our philosophy on aging.

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We adore the idea of filling in the cracks on concrete floor.

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and cracked tile.

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Stronger and more beautiful, like this piece of Kintsugi pottery

 

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and this kintsugi coffee table.

We are not only in love with look of kintsugi, but also what it represents, that imperfection is a form of freedom and it’s metaphor for life where “The world breaks everyone and afterward many are strong at the broken places”. -Ernest Hemmingway

Spaces by Jacflash Master Suite

The most dramatic change for this home is on the second floor. It made this project extend from 6 days to 6 weeks. The homeowner has always wanted a large master suite, as there was no shower in the tiny master bathroom on the second floor. To get ready they had to go up to their third floor to shower every morning so a bathroom renovation was always on their to-do list. After we heard their intentions, we had a plumber come in to give us an opinion on whether or not our first floor design would be affected with the second floor renovation. The plumber then told us that if the owner one day wanted to reno their second floor and create a larger master bathroom, that the main floor would be greatly affected, as he would have to add a large bulkhead on two walls on the living room. With this being said, all of our beautiful panels and mouldings downstairs would have to be removed, so we decided to start the second floor design and demo right away!

Spaces by Jacflash took on the challenge of completely changing the layout, design, and systems of the second floor of a typical Toronto semi-detached. Originally with small outdated bathrooms and little to no closets, we are creating an extravagant master suite – stocked with a 4 piece bathroom, huge walk-in closet and all the modern conveniences you could imagine.

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Strangely, this level was already kind of open concept. Instead of the bedrooms usually being separated in multiple small spaces, it was one large room that the owners used for a seating area and master bedroom. On the other end there was an office space that led out to a patio, which they used as a closet.

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The trickiest part of designing the layout for this bathroom was to not waste any space, but also not let it feel cluttered and cramped. After many meetings and changes, we finally landed on a layout that the home owners love.

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Keeping the layout symmetrical and balanced will allow continuous fluidity. We changed the bedroom into the back room to give the master access to the back patio and the morning light. The closet will then be at the front of the house, but can easily be converted into a spacious bedroom if needed.

Going from a tiny bathroom of 5′ x 4′ with no shower, to a 14′ x 8′ 4 piece, means that we had to relocate the plumbing stack. This was a bit of a headache but was resolved with a bit of creativity to hide a bulk head downstairs (see last post*).

We took a lot of inspiration from these pictures –

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We will be using a similar medium grey marble in a custom herringbone pattern, with a honed finished as a waterfall affect ‘strip’ in the shower. It will be accompanied by a Carrara marble porcelain on the entire north wall. Mixing high end marble with inexpensive tile creates a really expensive look without the big ticket price.

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We love the dark matte black accents on the glass and fixtures against the white walls and vanity. We are going to use this idea for our shower and enclosed water closet, as well as a few custom features.

Make sure you go over the fixtures you would like to order with your plumber before you make your purchase! Some faucets/shower heads may look nice but may also have the wrong valves for your pipes or for the layout.

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Here are the final elevations, showing the placement and final finishes for everything in the bathroom. To emphasize the symmetry of the plan, we also brought that into the bathroom with the two glass enclosures on either side of the vanity, and also a full mirror covering the south wall to reflect the symmetrical north wall. Incorporating high contrast finishes with a bit of sparkle will also create balance between masculinity and elegance.

The custom vanity is 7′ long, which offers a ton of storage under the sinks. It is locally designed by a really helpful manufacturer. The high gloss white finish will be a nice contrast of material between the shiny gold, matte black, and honed grey marble.

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Things are coming along, we just finished the framing stage. We can finally see what the space feels like with the new layout.. this bathroom is going to be big!

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This week we are finalizing all of the electrical, HVAC and plumbing to have the first building inspection completed by the end of the week. After this stage is done, we can go ahead with the insulation, installing the new windows, and drywall/taping.