Renovation Stress – Inspections, Mantel Unpacking, Ceiling Issues!

Hi Everyone,

If you read part 1, I left you with a bit of a cliffhanger. To find out what happened with the antique fireplace mantel shipped from the Netherlands, see what’s lurking in my entry ceiling, and also find out what small but major change we had to make in the plan, please click the link below to read part 2.

If you’re here for the first time or wish to review, please keep reading from the top.


Part 2 Begins Here


I hope you are faring well now that we are well into the “holiday season.”

There has been so much going on, and I want to talk about it all, but I’m also trying to enjoy the holiday season, too. After all, there is much more to life than renovation stress, a blog, and my laptop.


BTW, please read this post until the end for a big surprise!


Polished nickel cremone bolt handle - Wilmette Hardware

Tuesday, the (stunning) Cremone Bolts from Wilmette Hardware arrived. I mentioned that in last week’s bathroom post.


Cale in Scotland

My son Cale arrived back in Boston Wednesday evening from his trip to Scotland and Ireland. I took this image from a computer screen as Cale showed me his vacation pics at the Boston Public Library.


Now, can you guess where he’s sleeping?


I’ll tell you in a sec.

Earlier on Wednesday, my darling GC, Robert, and I did a number on the living room.


Robert O sweeping - Brendan rolling

Above, you can see the most beautiful sight in the entire Renoverse.

A man with a broom, and he’s using it.

That’s Brendan rolling up some of the old paper they put down just before the kitchen cabinets arrived last August.

Truth be told, we were making room for another overseas arrival. We spent a good two hours cleaning up, and rearranging. In so doing, we found some important items like the touchup paint and the panel for the dishwasher!




I told Robert I needed the cushion from the sleep sofa for Cale to sleep on.


While the sofa was in the living room, its cushion was in the loft and was the first thing to go inside.

Since retrieving that was no longer an option, I said, well, let’s use the sleep sofa mattress. The idea was that I would make a tiny “room” in the vestibule of my little room. However, when Cale arrived that evening, around 6:30, and after a delicious dinner at an Italian restaurant on Newbury Street, Cale put the mattress in the kitchen!


Earlier that afternoon, before Cale arrived, there was a meeting with Brendan, the lead carpenter, to go over every inch of the bathroom in detail.


If you missed that post that goes over, in detail, a framing issue, you can see it here.

Portola Sconce - Piaf Sconce Visual Comfort

Portola Sconces at Serena & Lily

It is the same as the Piaf Sconce at Visual Comfort. (Both are currently on sale)

We also found one of the bathroom sconces and determined we needed to start the cabinet door six inches over, so we could open the door 90 degrees. That’s fine; with 22″ to work with, that still gives us about a 12″ x 22″ finished space to store items.

Brendan got to work on the framing immediately. He didn’t need to redo anything, only add.

I’ll be sharing more about the bathroom very soon. I can’t wait for you to see it!


Meanwhile, the fireplace mantel did not arrive on Wednesday.


However, I found out at the end of the day on Wednesday, that it would be arriving between 1:00 – 3:00 on Thursday.

But, before the mantel arrived, on Thursday, the Boston inspector showed up promptly at 11:00 AM to do the rough inspections of the stairs, framing, and plumbing downstairs.

See what I mean?


At 11:19, I received a text from Robert.


Inspections are all good; he signed off on everything.


rough inspections signed off December 7, 2023


Fantastic news! We have two building permits because of the stairs.


Now, I just have to get through a 400 lb (including crate) hunk of marble coming up the stairs and into my apartment.


I was told at 1:20 that the mantel had just left the airport, but I only got the message at 1:41. OMG! They’re going to be here any second. The airport is only 4.1 miles away, and even with heavy traffic takes maybe 15 minutes.


Of course, I was supposed to be working.



Instead, I chatted with Cale, looked at Instagram, which is mostly ballet dancers and dogs on my feed, and checked my email two dozen times…

Finally, at 2:43, my phone rang. They were out front. Cale and Brendan went to help out after first opening the huge double entrance doors and securing them with their hooks.

The delivery guys couldn’t have been nicer, but they did not seem to have the expertise to move exceedingly heavy objects up 12 steps.

I felt the urge to go pour myself a double shot of banana cream pie.

4 men and a heavy box on Comm Ave Boston


Thank God Cale was there. Three men would not have been able to do this.


How does one male ballet dancer lift a 110-pound ballerina over his head?


Have you ever seen a male ballet dancer up close? They are only slightly larger than the super-skinny ballerinas.

I have mad respect for those dudes who do the most amazing moves, exhibit extreme flexibility, and can deadlift 110 pounds clear over their heads as if it’s a loaf of bread.

Marianela Nunez and Rupert Pennefather in orange - Concerto
Marianela Nunez and Rupert Pennefather in McMillan’s Concerto.

For ballet lovers, if you’ve not seen this, I highly recommend it.



Yes, I know the dashing Pennefather looks like a hefty dude, but the stage lights add a good 15-20 lbs to a tall guy like this.


Back to the marble mantel show. Talk about renovation stress!


Securing the mantel


Above, you can see the crew securing my coffin, I mean the crated mantel to the dolly.

Sorry, I realize that was a sick, highly inappropriate joke.

Every once in a while, Cale looked my way; he would give me a little wink and a thumbs up to reassure me all was fine.

I knew he was lying.

Mothers always know.

I also knew that none of them had any idea what they were doing, and as you can see, Cale and Brendan didn’t even bother to put on coats or gloves. It was maybe a degree or two above the freezing mark.


123 - UP!

Slowly, they rolled the crate towards the steps.

One step at a time. Okay, maybe they do know what they’re doing.

One, two, three


Yes, Cale is there


Even though he’s not visible, Cale was on the bottom. One false move, and let’s not go there. This exercise was repeated six times until they got to the first landing.


heavy lifting


They rested for a minute and then, within a couple of minutes, did the second set of six steps.


Almost there!

And then, just over the threshold, the mantel was in through the double doors and rolling down the carpet towards my front door.


The mantel was not shipped in one piece. I know this because the box was wide enough but not tall enough.


It did occur to me that we should check the mantel out to ensure it was intact.

I was just glad it was inside, and it was now 3:15 and past Brendan’s quitting time. Plus, I’m sure we were all more than tired.


Friday, I did receive a text on WhatsApp from the vendor in the Netherlands, Renzo Van Engelen.


(I know. We’re idiots.) And, poor Renzo. I know the feeling of having furniture delivered, and finding out it came busted. It’s the opposite of a broom sweeping man.

It’s hell on earth.

I answered Renzo:

Thursday evening, I went with a friend to check out the Beacon Hill Holiday stroll.

Cale and I arrived back at about the same time, had a bite to eat, and chatted.

So, no post Thursday night. I was in bed with the lights out by 11:30. Proud of myself for that one!


Yesterday, Friday, Eugene joined Brendan again, and the two of them knocked out the rest of the bathroom framing. I can’t wait for you to see it!


Brendan and Eugene installing the Zephyr Monsoon recirculating hood insert

After that, the guys installed the new Zephyr Monsoon Connect Range Hood Insert. By the way, the bottom of the hood is getting a little moulding which isn’t on yet. I’d also like to add a thin valance that wraps around the side of the hood.

There will be more about the Zephyr Monsoon later when it’s all hooked up. But, Guys who’ve been reading since October 2017 or earlier. Do you remember when I won the range hood?


Well, I contacted the contact at Zephyr almost six years later, and she said, without missing a beat, they’d be delighted to give me one!


And with that, Cale just returned from three Aikido classes and a haircut and shave!

Cale December 2023

So cute!

Cale after haircut December 9, 2023

Cale’s a Gemini. lol

Now, last night Cale noticed the hole you can see in the upper far right corner of the image above. It’s  in the front entry hall.

What I saw made me gasp!

To be continued…


Part 2 Begins Here

Hi Everyone,

Ahhh… my boy (Cale) has again flown away to his home in western Massachusetts. He left Sunday evening.

This morning, the guys (Brendan and Eugene) unpacked the antique fireplace mantel that had been created and shipped from the Netherlands.


Brendan and Eugene unpacking the mantel

Brendan and Eugene unpacking the mantel.


unpacking the crate


It was packed in six pieces.


fireplace jamb

Once the crate was fully opened, each piece was unwrapped and thoroughly examined, and photographed.



The marble is so lovely, and all arrived in perfect condition!

You may exhale now.

Now, please excuse me for a few while I go and take a nap.


Okay, I wasn’t joking.

I took a nap, and then I got my hair done. When I got home, the guys had just left, so I had a bite to eat and did my daily vacuuming.

And then I looked at little ovens for my kitchen pantry cabinet. After all, if I’m baking one potato or a few samosas, I really don’t need to fire up the big oven.


Then, I remembered that I hadn’t checked out today’s progress.


The guys only arrived at 9:00 today. While I heard lots of sawing and nails going in, I’m not sure what they did. Maybe they added some pieces of wood to what is already there.

I can totally see what it’s all going to look like now, even without the sheetrock. It’s like the bones, tendons, ligaments, and muscles are all in. All that remains is the skin.


So, there’s much to share, but today, we will return to the staircase and the drastic change in the bedroom I’ve been alluding to.


I don’t know how we were so off because the two architects and I thought there would be at least 9′-3″ for the bed and nightstands if we did a little bump out of the wall to hide the stairs breaking through the ceiling.

checkerboard floor garden level 17 sq with closet & doors November 11, 2023
Above, the old floor plan shows the bump out to hide the steps.


That’s fine for a full or queen-sized bed. It would not be enough space for a California King, because there would only be 19″ on either side of the bed. The problem is opening the closet door that will be 22″ wide.

However, 9′-3″ is the absolute lower limit regarding the space needed for a queen-sized bed and two nightstands.

Here’s the bottom line.


If we wanted to bury the stairs behind the closet completely, there would only be 8′-6″ to work with.


That would be fine for me with my full-sized bed, but really pushing it with a queen-sized bed.

My gut told me to forget about burying that first step behind the closet.

Therefore, I’ve decided to make the wall under the stairs flush with the entrance wall. (see below) That means we will see the stairs breaking through the ceiling for about 14″ before it meets with the wall.

stairs breaking through ceiling renovation
Above, in the background, you can see the angled wood pieces. That is the stringer of the steps breaking through the ceiling. No worries, we’ll make it look good.


Moving the entrance to the bedroom closet back leaves 9′-8″ for the bed and nightstands.


That’s much better. If doing a queen-sized bed, it leaves 56″ for bedding and nightstands. If doing a California King, there would be 44″ for bedding and nightstands. I’ll have a good 30″ on each side of my full-sized bed.

I was in the bedroom this evening and love the new size! It is still a spacious and more balanced room, as the bed is more centered in the room than it was because of the door, which will be moved soon.

As for the entry ceiling.

The other night, Cale called me over and shone his phone’s flashlight into the big hole in the entry ceiling. The reason the hole is there is for the electricians to do their wiring.

lurking in the shadows above the false ceiling

I always knew the entry and kitchen were a false ceiling.

But, let’s brighten up that hole to see what’s been hiding up there for decades.

Holy Crap! Yes, it’s the same moulding that’s in the living room!

my Boston Living Room - Benjamin Moore Classic Gray walls

hiding in the ceiling
There it is, and in much better condition than is in the living room. Does this mean we could’ve raised the ceiling in the entry and kitchen?

Sure. Anything (almost) is possible. However, there are a lot of pipes and wires up there that would need to go elsewhere. It’s not worth it, as it would be a lot of extra money. Still, I find it sad that this beauty has been hidden all of the years.

We are going to put up a cool moulding all the way around the kitchen and entry.

Okay, next up, we will look at the other side of the wall and finalize the under-stairs storage and railing.


I’ve been working on the drawings but will run them by Robert tomorrow morning before sharing them.

This is another big week.

The kitchen counters are getting installed on Thursday and the plumber is coming on Friday.

I might have a kitchen sink with hot and cold running water this coming weekend!



Please check out the recently updated HOT SALES!

***And, the beautiful Holiday Shop for 2023!

***Plus, I’m running a special promotion on my rockin’ interior design guides!

There is now an Amazon link on my home page and below. Thank you for the suggestion!

Please note that I have decided not to create a membership site. However, this website is very expensive to run. To provide this content, I rely on you, the kind readers of my blog, to use my affiliate links whenever possible for items you need and want. There is no extra charge to you. The vendor you’re purchasing from pays me a small commission.

Amazon ad

To facilitate this, some readers have asked me to put

A link to is on my home page.

Please click the link before items go into your shopping cart. Some people save their purchases in their “save for later folder.” Then, if you remember, please come back and click my Amazon link, and then you’re free to place your orders. While most vendor links have a cookie that lasts a while, Amazon’s cookies only last up to 24 hours.

Thank you so much!

I very much appreciate your help and support!

41 Responses

  1. Hi Laurel! I love how your renovation is coming together and I’ve been so impressed with your attention to detail!

    I have a small bedroom (10’2 x 11’4) and was hoping to add a closet. From what I’ve seen online, the minimum depth is 22-24”. One wall of the room has a door and the other has windows that would be blocked by a bed. The remaining walls would give me 98” of space or 88” – very tight for a queen bed with 2 nightstands.

    Should I give up on my closet dreams? Switch out my queen for a full bed? I’m pretty stumped and would love your thoughts.

    Thanks for sharing so much information, I can’t wait to see how the renovation turns out.

  2. I am reading “Celtic Design …” (Krasner) which shows homes where understair a proud feature. Maybe not try to camouflage yours totally?
    The lessons of experience🥴 We discovered ten inches — plus original beaded ceiling —when we intentionally punctured fake ceiling EARLY in a reno project.

    1. Hi Camilla,

      I always suspected there was some hidden beauty up there. However, it wouldn’t be possible at this point to lift the ceiling another another 40″. While I love the 10′-2″ ceiling height in the hall and kitchen, I wouldn’t want it any higher. We’re going to do a beautiful Victorian coving I found at Orac Decor. The scale and shape is perfect! So, it is going to be like a baby, simpler version of the living room crown moulding and frieze that’s in the living room.

      Please check out this post to see the opposite side of the hall.

      I should’ve put these links in the post, but spent that time at a holiday party, cleaning, and sleeping. lol

  3. It really is coming together! I can’t wait to see how the stair railings work. BTW… I was just in London in an old Club, and in one of the drawing rooms there were 12+foot cremone bolt latches on the very-very-very tall doors leading to a balcony. (ha! I’ve learned a new word!)

    It looks like your clothes closet doors swing outward… SMART! that provides really precious real estate for hanging all sorts of shoes, accessories, etc. I have 6 out-swinging closet doors (it’s a long closet wall) and have “stuff” on each and every door… of course, a mirror would have been a smarter move, but: Shoes.

    1. Hi LuAnn,

      My architect thought they should swing in because he thought it was “congested” in the hall. However, it’s quite spacious, and the doors will be closed 99% of the time if not more.

  4. At first glance, I misunderstood the picture of the mantel being uncrated. I thought the styrofoam padding was pieces of speckled granite and I was horrified by the thought that they had sent you the wrong (hideous) item! So glad it all came through safely and beautifully.

  5. I think adding a piece of slanted ceiling over the stair will merely add more character and work perfectly in your home, and I know you will work out the details so that it looks seamless. I’m so glad that the fireplace made it safely, I can’t wait to see it in place. I’m glad you will have a kitchen with running water soon, that will change your life a bit. And how frustrating to know that that gorgeous molding and ceiling is up there and you can’t get to it! But I’m sure they had to drop that ceiling down when they turned this big house into flats and added HVAC. I’m curious if others in your building have renovated their apartments as nice as you are doing?

    1. Hi Robin,

      Sadly, there is no central AC in the building. There is no need for 3 feet + of crawl space above the dropped ceiling. Plus, there’s a good 12″ – 15″ above the full-height ceiling for wires. They ran the LR chandelier wire up there.

      There was some talk of putting in building central AC about 18 months ago, but then it was dropped. One of the biggest issues is where to put the condensers. The roof, at present, is not an option. As for the other apartments, I dare not comment as I got in trouble for doing a post about the common entry outside my unit. It was written over two years ago and I was asked to take it down, so I did.

      I will say that I’m thrilled to be here, I love my neighbors, and feel incredibly blessed to be able to do what I’m doing. As a result of the great recession of 2008-09, while still married, we came a hair’s breath away from bankruptcy. Just my being here, is indeed, a miracle!

      I hope my saying that will serve to show that even when all seems hopeless, it is possible to turn one’s life around.

  6. I was so excited to see that you have a full size bed! I do too and it’s the perfect fit for the bedroom in my 1924 bungalow. Alas the new sofa I bought last year (and measured for!) is a little too big for the living room, given the placement of lovely windows and floor registers for my HVAC system. I’ve had many problems in 15 months to renovate my kitchen (“ghosted” by original guy–which can be what happens when you get a “guy”) but excited to say the plumbers are coming Thurday so finally a sink and dshwasher! No more leaning over the bathtub to wash dishes. I’ve enjoyed reading about your massive renovation running parallel to my little kitchen reno. Big or small, it seems there are always bumps in the road with a renovation. But the support of friends (in your case, this blog) can really help!

    1. Hi Ivis,

      Oh dear, I’m so sorry to hear about your renovation woes. I am sure there’s a special place in hell for spineless contractors who ghost their clients. Are you saying you’ve been washing dishes in the tub for 15 months? Oh my… I’m only going on two weeks and it’s making me nuts. I’ll take the Murphy bed any day to washing dishes in the tub.

      I have a system down though. I have a huge soup pot and I put the dishes in there with hot soapy water to soak. It makes it a little easier and faster to do them. But, since I’m also putting my body in the tub, I also spray a little bathroom cleaner with bleach and then hose down the entire tub before bathing.

  7. Laurel,
    Love everything you are doing. You have used every nook which in historic renovations I think makes for the most useable plans. The piece of stair showing, in my opinion, adds to the character of your home – and creates a fun story as well. Maybe a lovely scrapbook of your project on a table?

    I, too, had been wondering about the 30″ toilet area. Curious …is 36″ wide clearance not code in Boston or are they lax on older properties? I think whatever is comfortable for you is just perfect!

    So pretty. So well designed. Your super talent is popping out all over! It makes my heart smile to see you take such care with each and every detail and know you will just love being there.

    Your mantle is the perfect touch! Thrilled for you.

    JoAnne in TN

    1. Hi JoAnne,

      They are draconian sticklers regarding code in Boston. The code for width is 30″ minimum side to side, or sometimes expressed 15″ from the centerline of the toilet. Mine will be 34″, so four inches wider than standard.

      36″ I believe, is the minimum ADA requirement for a handicapped toilet side-to-side width. I am not required to make it ADA compliant or wheelchair accessible. A person in a wheelchair would have a lot of difficulty in my building. They might not even be able to get through the 26″ wide egress door that is the only way into the building that doesn’t involve steps.

      However, even if they could get through the door, with the old spiral, there’d be no way they could access the main living areas of the home, upstairs. Now, with the straight-run stairs, they might be able to use a chair lift.

      When Cale and I took our trip back in time in April 2022, when in Chicago, we stayed in a luxurious two bedroom suite with two bathrooms. Since Cale is 8″ taller than I am, I got the ADA bathroom, and the sink was about two feet off the floor. I had to get down on my knees to wash my face.

      In my three years here, plus earlier years, I’ve been in some mighty tight quarters in Boston AND NYC apartments, for that matter. My Bronxville bathroom was only 4.5 wide in the back and that included the toilet and bathtub.

  8. Hi Laurel,

    Your renovation looks beautiful and the height of your ceilings are amazing! As a fellow Bostonian I have trouble carrying in all my groceries never mind a mantel!

  9. Hello Laurel, When a friend was moving, he gave me his granite-top dining table. The movers had to lug that monster up to my 5th-floor walk-up apartment. Even though movers are incredibly strong, they told me that they hoped never to move that table again!
    By the way, such great progress on your place. Everything is falling together beautifully, and glimpses of the final look are appearing.

  10. Hi Laurel,

    I haven’t been leaving comments here but I’ve been reading your blog and have been amazed at how you have figured out all your renovations! Kitchen, bathroom, new staircase, YIKES! The kitchen looks absolutely stunning so far! I can’t wait to see everything finished. I also love the view from the front steps of your house. You live on a gorgeous block. It’s been amazing to watch the transformation of your space, and of course I’ve always loved your sense of humor. I guess you really need to have one during renovations like this.

    Our house has changed a lot since you visited and soon we will be embarking on a kitchen renovation – my first. I, however, don’t have your abilities so will be using a kitchen designer and a GC to figure it all out.

    Good luck with opening your fireplace crate!


  11. Laurel! You’re a tease. You can’t leave us hanging like this. I certainly hope an animal wasn’t found in the hole.

  12. excitement in every detail of your renovation… please take photos of what’s behind the walls re: electrical and plumbing for the future…
    so happy for you and wonderful that Cale is there for you… moral support, etc.
    Awaiting the next installment…
    and thanks for being such a trooper getting through it all…

  13. Just wondering about some of your measurements. Your toilet cubicle looks to be about 30” wide and 36” deep. The Kohler toilet you posted is 30.3” deep, and with a 1” clearance behind the tank it will project 31.3” from the wall, or more depending on your moulding,
    The toilet centre needs to be 15” from the side walls and there needs to be 21-24” clearance in front of the toilet, depending on which regulations apply in your area.
    You have about 5” clearance between the toilet front and the doorway, so a person’s feet will be in the doorway when they use the toilet. It would not make any sense to install a privacy door in the future because a person would not be able to close it anyway because their feet would be in the way.
    As well, the cubicle opening is only 26”.
    I have a powder room with a 24” wide doorway. I am a small woman and if I stand in the opening there is not much room to move around. A 26” opening would not be much better for dealing with the activities required after using the toilet and would be very uncomfortable for someone larger than me.
    Since the option of a future door won’t work it would make more sense to remove that doorway so the cubicle is a full 30” wide and more comfortable for most people to use. That would also make it more appealing to a greater range of future buyers.

    1. Hi Charlene,

      Thanks for your concern. I just went and measured and the finished interior width is 33″ and the depth 37.25″. It is quite spacious. There’s 4′-8″ in front of the doorway.

      But get this; the current egress door is only 26″ wide, and we’re going to reuse it with embellishments. (not wood.)

      The Boston building inspector has signed off on all of it. I love the design; it works for me.

  14. Do you have drawers in YOUR bathroom? I installed an electrical outlet in the wall behind a drawer and cord to handle my curling iron and hair dryer so they could be stored in the drawer.

    1. Hi Lawrie,

      I have two cabinets flanking the sink; one will be 3″ deep and the other 6″ deep. One will have an electrical outlet inside for the toothbrush. Near the toilet is a deep cabinet that will have some pullout storage and shelves.

  15. Laurel, I can’t recall if you have already mentioned this or not. I put electrical outlets inside my bathroom inset toiletry cabinets. Best thing ever. Toothbrush, water pic, etc can stay out of side and stay charged up. Even though your door has to be smaller, couldn’t he make the cabinet behind it bigger so that you would have some out of the way storage for things you don’t use everyday tucked in there?

  16. So, how many of us with daughters have asked how old Cale is and if he’s single? So handsome! and I love that you get to see so much of him.
    Your apartment is going to be absolutely lovely. How proud are you!?!

  17. GASP! And then you leave us with a cliff hanger, ugh. Waiting of course with bated breath.
    My MB bath project almost completed. Would be completed if holiday shipping hadn’t delayed my fixtures. Floors done, yea. We got to sleep in our bedroom for the first time since moving in August. Next, kitchen remodel. Over the hump now. Cleaning everything in sight. The distraction helps. Very excited about your project too.

  18. Laurel, Things are moving along quickly now and I can’t wait to see it all finished. It is a beautiful and respectful renovation of a historic property. Despite the weight, the delivery of the fireplace mantle went amazingly well. My daughter lives in Boston and accepting any large item is a challenge in the city. My family is in the process of a lake home gut renovation and our kitchen designer encouraged us to use a Zephyr range hood. I was not familiar with the brand having always use Best Range Hoods in the past. I am pleased to see you are using this brand. I re-read the post on winning one in 2017 and how they honored that. We are not close to install, so I am anxious to see yours trimmed out. Congratulations on all the progress and nearing completion! Sherry B

  19. Before the bathroom walls are closed up, consider adding blocking (support) in appropriate places for grab bars. You need not install grab bars now, but you will be able to easily should you or a future owner need to. Be sure to make a drawing of where the blocking can be found for future reference.

    Your renovation is enthralling. I look forward to each new installment.

    P.S. I’ve used Zephyr hoods (Typhoon) in my last 2 houses. I love them. You cannot beat their ability to move air while staying relatively quiet!

  20. Oh No! Laurel, you cannot end the post on this cliff hanger! Is your mantel okay? And why that big hole? Just absolutely loved this post. Chuckled all the way through. And I very much envied your son his resting in the kitchen. It really is a jewel. Please post again soon.

  21. Hi Laurel,
    So nice of Cale and Brendan to help with the heavy mantel lift! A passed inspection is another reason to celebrate!

    …and does the hole in the ceiling reveal a drop ceiling with more original molding? Can’t wait to read the next installment of your reno saga!
    Love, Donna

    P.S. Does your Rolodex contain sources for table lamps, lampshades, plate easels and accessories that can be purchased by a non-designer? I’d rather not pay retail, but I’m struggling to find reasonable pricing

    P.P.S. I’m learning how to mask photos with a transparent background in Picmonkey as I’m inspired by your design renderings. Do you use Picmonkey for your elevation drawings, too?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Welcome To Laurel Home!


Hi, I’m Laurel, and Laurel Home is the website and blog for Laurel Bern Interiors.
I’ve been creating new-traditional interiors since 1988. The blog is where I share all.

New Edition, November 2023! Get The Indispensable Guide For 100s of Home Furnishings And Interior Design Sources That Everyone Is Raving About

laurels-rolodex-final-book-cover-master 10th edition 23-24

laurel home archives


Please click the image below for more info about my rockin’ Interior Design Guides for 2024!

Laurel Home Interior Design Guides 2024
Amazon ad

please click below to check out my favorite decorating & design books

Laurel Bern's Favorite Interior Design and Decorating Books
Subscribe To The Laurel Home Blog And You Will Receive A FREE Guide Where I Share How To Get Your Paint Colors Right, The First Time.