Starting Fresh: Complete Home Makeover and Renovation of This Brooklyn Brownstone

People say that you shouldn’t sweat the small stuff, but we live for the little details. These sometimes invisible touches can be the differentiator between a mediocre renovation and one that makes a jaw drop the first time a person walks into the apartment. Designers are well known for their attention to detail, but it’s rare that we get a client who is at the same level as us when it comes to digging into every facet of a renovation.

In this Brooklyn home makeover, we met our match in detail-oriented clients who were highly engaged throughout the entire process. The result was a gorgeous home renovation that blew the clients away with its amazing details.

A Home Renovation False Start

After working with a design-build firm for a few months to determine the scope of the project, the clients became frustrated. They didn’t feel that the company was listening to them. It didn’t seem like it was paying enough attention to the details, and the process felt too sluggish. It was time for a change.

The clients found us through an internet search and reached out to schedule an initial meeting. Within 1½ weeks, we had met with the clients, walked through the apartment, and provided an estimate. Our initial proposal was extremely thorough and included 99 percent of the work required to complete the job—a strong indicator that we were the right fit for these meticulous clients. The contract was signed within two weeks of our first interaction, and we were off to the races.  

Detail Renovations Lives Up to Its Name

With clients who knew exactly what they wanted, our challenge was to execute to their exact specifications. This was especially difficult because they had transitioned away from the design-build firm they previously hired, and the plans were incomplete. An architect was brought in to help fill in the gaps, but with a limited design budget, not every aspect of the project was fully detailed. This is common, but with clients who expected perfection, it added a layer of difficulty to this home renovation.

Their intense participation in the project meant that the clients were involved in every decision throughout the process. We welcomed their input, especially because we were working with a relatively loose drawing set. Plenty of decisions needed to be made along the way, and having the homeowners readily available to provide feedback and direction was essential to keeping the project on track.

Many meetings and change orders later, the project was complete, and the clients are so happy with the results that they don’t ever plan to move away from their newly renovated home. They also have a new appreciation of how difficult it is to live through a renovation, both logistically and emotionally. 

Digging into the Details

Every now and then, we are fortunate enough to work with clients who impress us with their unique skills. These clients demonstrated their commitment to getting every single detail just right through their ability to research materials and build relationships. In fact, we would hire them today if they weren’t already successful attorneys!

An example of just how much love went into this home makeover is the story of the door hardware. The clients loved the hinges and doorknobs in the home because they had an intricate pattern on them. However, there were not enough of the original parts to incorporate them throughout the apartment. The clients were able to find out where the print on the door hardware was made, identify the company that had purchased the original manufacturer, and determine how they could get more parts to complete their set.

We love sweating the small stuff, and it shows in our work. To see more of our home renovation projects in Brooklyn and Manhattan, view the project gallery on our website.

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