Invisible Outlets

Steering away from the traditional bulky and visually obstructive outlets, invisible outlets are a design solution that refrain from the aesthetic and flow of your space being compromised.

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The aesthetic is flush and rimless, seamlessly blending with the interior.

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They can be faux finished, painted, wallpapered or laminated.

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We are currently installing invisible outlets in a client’s bathroom, it runs flush with the wall. By covering it with the same white marble as the wall, we are able to achieve this seamless, “invisible” look.

There are many different options regarding ways to finish the outlet such as painting, or adding wallpaper, that are surprisingly affordable as well!

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.

 

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.

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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.

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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’.

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Hopefully to finish with this look..

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First coat already on!

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.