In September, the Central Virginia chapter of the National Association of the Remodeling Industry (NARI) presented its Contractor of the Year (CotY) awards to local members who have demonstrated outstanding work through their remodeling projects. Members of the NARI — Metro DC chapter judged the entries.
Residential Kitchen Under $70,000: DesignLine Remodelers Inc.
What a difference natural light makes: With the addition of a large, three-paneled exterior window, Wayne Booze of DesignLine instantly brought a dark, outdated kitchen into the 21st century. Carrera marble countertops, off-white cabinetry and a white, crackle-finish subway tile backsplash all work to accomplish the homeowners' objective of creating a bright and airy space in their West End home.
To keep the project within budget, the kitchen was redesigned rather than expanded, Booze says. A weathered wooden table serves as a kitchen island and is topped by a simple bellwether light fixture. Both add warmth and character to the simply designed space.
Residential Kitchen Over $70,000: HomeMasons Inc.
Mason Hearn of HomeMasons designed this one-of-a-kind kitchen for clients who have a large collection of art and contemporary craft furniture. The homeowners chose a fossil-fish mural backsplash from the Green River Stone Company in Utah as the design inspiration. Hearn and the homeowners
collaborated with local artisans to create the kitchen's many custom elements: undulating bronze cabinet pulls by Kyle Lucia of Phoenix Metalcrafts, a glass island inset by Jude Schlotzhauer and birch cabinetry by Hunter Webb of the Clearfield Company.
Since Hearn had worked with the clients previously, "We knew that the major pieces of the project needed to be unique and very craft-oriented," he says. "We knew they weren't going to be excited by something like
white raised-panel cabinets.
Bathroms Under $30,000: B.K. Martin Construction
In this 1980s Brandermill home, B.K. Martin Construction transformed a tired, fragmented bathroom into a spacious, modern retreat simply by reconfiguring the space. The homeowners' primary goals were to replace a seldom-used Jacuzzi with a large shower, to add a double sink vanity and to provide access to an adjacent walk-in closet.
"The bathroom had a lot of potential," says contractor Kyle Martin. "It was a good size with a lot of light — [it had] a skylight and three windows."
The homeowners' careful choices helped to keep the project under $30,000. "They didn't go with the most expensive tile or fixtures," Martin says. "They went with what they liked, and they had good taste."
Trade partner, Virginia Shower Door
Bathrooms Over $30,000: Custom Kitchens Inc.
In this project, Custom Kitchens Inc. transformed two bedrooms, a closet and a small bath into a modern master suite. The winning master bath is 240 square feet and features Carrera marble tile, Kohler fixtures, ample storage and two glass-block windows. "The whole house is decorated in a very traditional style, and we wanted to keep it in that realm," explains designer and owner Richard Hendrick.
The Byrd Park home dates from the early 1900s. The renovation is true to the period of the home, while also providing luxuries never imagined during that time; a spacious steam shower and infinity tub provide a daily spa retreat for the owners.
Green Design: Dovetail Construction Company, Inc.
When work began to convert the 10,000-square-foot former Senior Center of Richmond to its original use as a single-family home, Dovetail Construction spent nearly $3,000 to fill the building's two 300-gallon oil tanks and set the thermostat to 50 degrees. "We thought it would last the whole winter," Julie Weissend says. "It lasted less than a month."
Dovetail looked to state-of-the-art green-energy technology such as geothermal heating and cooling, modern insulation and low-profile storm windows to increase energy efficiency while still preserving the historic integrity of the Monument Avenue home. "Our last utility bill of the winter was $240," Weissend says. "We really want the house to last another 100 years, but it can't if people can't afford the energy costs."
Residential Interior Remodel & Additions: Shearman Associates PLC
This extensive Laburnum Park project included the addition of a first-floor master suite and an expanded and renovated mudroom and kitchen. Architect and contractor Michael Shearman says no detail was overlooked as he sought to match the style of the existing 1920s cottage.
The mudroom was a crucial part of the project. Not only is the homeowner an avid gardener who needed a place to store gardening supplies, but the new mudroom also separates the master suite from the rest of the house and provides an interior connection between the front and rear gardens.
The expanded kitchen is now open to the rest of the home. "The design of the kitchen was very collaborative," Shearman says. "The homeowner wanted an eclectic kitchen with different colored cabinets. ... The idea was for it to look like an older kitchen that had evolved over time."
Whole House: Davidson Builders
Bradley Davidson of Davidson Builders describes the winning project as "an extreme whole-house remodel. The design challenge was to work within the original footprint and completely reinvent the house."
Rather than demolishing the aging ranch and starting from scratch, Niki Davidson explains that incorporating some parts of the original home allow for a better fit in its Westham neighborhood. "We also saved several truckloads of brick and debris from going into a landfill," Bradley adds. Other materials were salvaged and used in the renovation — the living room's sliding barn doors were built from wood scraps found on the site.
"This was a very technical project," Bradley says. "For us to have done it in six months and stayed
on budget is pretty amazing." Trade partner, C.L. Shade Drafting
Residential Interior or Exterior Specialty: Silver Hammer Additions
When you need to replace a 3-by-7-foot solid wood door from the early 1900s, you can't just go to Lowe's and grab a comparable one off the shelf, says Bob Lytle of Silver Hammer Additions, who won for this complete door restoration. "It requires a cus-
For this project in Richmond's Fan District, Silver Hammer removed the door's mortise lock and sent it for repair, removed, polished and lacquered all of
the brass hardware, refinished the door, installed new hinges, and installed modern silicone
weather stripping to make it energy efficient.
"When you have a 100-plus-year-old home, my philosophy is to restore as much as possible," Lytle says. "If you can save the original fabric of the home and make it virtually like new, you are honoring the original property."