2013 Upper East Side Apartment Restoration

One of our favorite recent projects was restoring the pre-war plaster walls in a sweet apartment on the Upper East Side. Years ago, we’d worked with this homeowner on a full restoration of their house in Hudson, NY. But this job was different; the client needed to move in in a hurry. We had to work fast and within a very tight budget. We wound up developing a decorative plan that went along with the repairs.

The project started in the first week of December. After a two-week break for the holidays followed by some finishing touches, it’s finished and the client moved in in February, that’s a quick turnaround!

The biggest part of this project was to refinish the walls and ceiling with distressed colored plaster. But the condition of the walls and ceilings was rough, meaning we needed to correct the structural damage before we could apply any new plaster.

In order to meet our time and budget constraints we knew we would have to use far fewer coats than would normally be required for a venetian finish or a variation on specially plaster. To that end, I came up with a lime based mix that would cure quickly and handle heavier application, and tinted the plaster itself. We mixed it roughly, troweled on the top coat and then we burnished it.

The colors and finishes were a team effort. My crew and I collaborated to achieve a simple, fast, cost effective solution that made sense visually and got the job done.

Another large facet of the project was to hide the radiators and create some additional storage space. We achieved this by installing a cabinet that runs the length of the room under the windows. It also does a great job of hiding the television, cable boxes and sound equipment. I sourced the deco grates from a salvage vendor.

The floor treatment and curtains were the choice of the clients. Curtains hang from a black plumbing pipe which runs the length of the space.

The final puzzle piece was installing the client’s art collection to best effect.

In total, it was a two-month project covering both the structural and finish plaster applications. Cost effective and beautiful, we achieved just the right balance of raw and refined qualities. This is no longer a crumbling loft, it’s glamorous UES!

Summer/ Fall Resoration Project: Chelsea Townhome Facade Restoration

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This gallery contains 4 photos.

Hello all! Welcome back to another segment of our NYC townhome restoration. We hope everyone out there stayed safe before, during and after hurricane Sandy. Now that the storm has passed, work has resumed again this week on the most … Continue reading

Summer/ Fall Restoration Project: Chelsea Townhome Parapet Restoration

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This gallery contains 20 photos.

Our project in Chelsea began with the demolition of the parapet wall at the roof level. The portion of the roof being replaced served as rainwater and snow catchment for the larger, slightly raised slopped roof. The owner was concerned … Continue reading

Our Latest Summer/ Fall Restoration Project

For several weeks we have been rearranging and replacing a number of features for our current project. This historic townhome in the Chelsea area of NYC needed a few repairs and installments that would not only enhance its aesthetic qualities but also make it impervious to New York’s harsh weather conditions. The majority of the work has been on the exterior. The client was concerned about the weather resistance of the front door, the lower portion of the facade and the lower front windows. The main issue was at the roof level. The concern there was how the parapet delt with water drainage and accessibilty in the winter. One by one we are resolving these issues all while smoothly clearing the hurdles of inclimate weather and task coordination. More images will be available as the project nears completion.

Scratch(coat) another off the list!

Our latest project is complete! Yes, the brownstone with the ugly paint job and the dilapidated stoop has been restored and is ready for its world debut! While we did not end up replacing the old ironwork on the window grates, fences, and stoop, we did end up replacing everything else. The new brownstone stoop, foundation, lintels, and sills could not look more beautiful, nor could they match the new paint better.

     

Left: The finished brownstone facade. Right: The finished foundation.

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The horrors of Portland cement



Look at all that nasty Portland cement

Ever walk around NYC (or anywhere for that matter) and notice those old, dilapidated brick walls? The ones that seem to be disintegrating before your eyes? Ever wonder why it is that something supposedly so strong not even a big, bad wolf could blow it down now seems to be crumbling like a cookie? The answer is usually Portland cement.
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