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Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Hot firpelace installation

Hey MDG,
I wanted to add a new fireplace in my Den with a modern look? How can I do that without a chimney?

Great question! There are several Direct Vent modern gas fireplaces on the market with varying lengths (3ft, 4ft, 6 ft.) and you can install them with no need for a chimney or hearth! Since the air is drawn from the outside, there are no drafts and no heat loss. The fire is extremely efficient and effective. So, if you don't care about the smell of burning logs, this is the fireplace for you!

Take a look at these websites: and Both show a fire that is clean and to the metal edge of the fireplace unit. (as shown in the picture from sparkfires) Generally these fireplace units come with a fixed glass window and provide a great focal point for any contemporary space. I too wanted to install one of these gas fireplaces in our newly renovated Zen space (see Zen Modern post) but my husband prefers the smell and look of a cracking fire, so it didn't happen.... Oh well, I use candles instead!!
Thanks for posting,

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Zen Modern

Hey, hey...hey! To introduce myself as a design consultant to the blogging world, I welcome you into my home! Last year, my husband and I decided to renovate the lower level of our 2 story home. There were 4 rooms downstairs: family room, playroom, office and a bathroom/laundry combined. The lower level did not get much light and the playroom and office were cramped small spaces.
Life can be stressful and I wanted a destination where I could immediately feel good!

I asked myself, how can I achieve this goal?

1. I want a Zen Modern feel inorder to decompress:
A pallatte of serene-earth tone colors and patterns (gray-cream-slate blue) were selected to soothe the soul. The porcelain woven like flooring continuously flows from one space to the other. Gray modern couches with chaise lounges from Room and Board frames the family room and a creamy dense and plush handwoven rug underneath the couches from West Elm. My toesies never felt so good. I added a fountain and put it in the corner so I can hear water as I lay my head on my mongolian gray pillows. Ahhh Zen!

2. I want more light:

To get the feeling of the outside coming in, I sliced the existing foundation wall down 18" and installed large windows along the back wall. On the weekends, I sit on my couch and enjoy a morning cappachino as the morning light pours in the space. I feel like I am a part of my backyard now. The family room space feels so much bigger now.

3. I want the feeling of open space without addding square footage

The old office and playroom is now combined into one large space now for the kids. I kept the same materials and flowed it into their space. A lower ceiling due to a duct allowed me to add a light cove. With a blue tube guard, the kid space transforms into a lounge for when they are all grown up!

4. I love my bathroom! Goodbye laundry machines, hello shower with river rocks! The floating toilet and vanity are set infront of a dimensional limestone wall.

I accomplished all of my goals and love my Zen modern space!

Next time, I will be posting questions and design tips.