Remodeling inspiration

Last year, I had the pleasure of helping a friend from college, Alex, buy his first home. During his search process, he considered many different types of properties, from brand-new condos in SOMA to two-unit buildings in Glen Park (and a few others in between). Then we came across a single-family home in Midtown Terrace. Let’s just say she wasn’t ready for her close-up, Mr. DeMille.

The house was built in 1955 and appeared to be almost 100% original: sad little brick fireplace in the living room, not very user-friendly kitchen (no dishwasher, for starters), scuffed up oak floors, green and yellow tile bathroom with no storage at all. Somewhere along the way someone installed new windows, which we found out had been recalled by a now-defunct manufacturer. Awesome.

Then along came Alex, his partner Lance, and their designer, Kevin Sawyers of Sawyers Design. Almost one year later, Alex and Lance now live in a home that can be described as nothing less than a masterpiece. Gone is the wall separating the kitchen from the living room. Gone is the green and yellow tile in the bathroom. Gone are the awful windows. Gone is the 1950s version of a Home Depot-grade kitchen.

In place of all that is an open, inviting home with a tasteful, thoughtful design aesthetic that tips its hat to the mid-century origins of the house, but brings it squarely into the 21st century with beautiful, modern finishes.

I could babble on and on about this place, but I’ll cut myself off and go straight to the photos. I guarantee that each one of these is worth many more than a thousand words. Or, if you’re like me, no words at all — I was speechless when I saw the place for the first time. I’ll give you both the before and after, so you can see just how much has changed.

Alex's old kitchen.


New, fabulous kitchen.
Alex's old bathroom.


Another view of the original bathroom.


No, it's not a spa or a hotel suite. It's Alex's new and fantastically improved bathroom.


Original living room.


New living room. Check out the fireplace.


Picture a wall between the living room and kitchen. Now look at this.

There are plenty more before and after pictures on Kevin’s business page on Facebook. Check them out, drool a lot, and when it’s time to imagine your own dream home, call Kevin.


  1. Britton Jackson says

    You’re very welcome, Kevin! It’s such a work of art — it was easy to write such wonderful things about it.

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