Feature Project: Forsyth and Vaquero

By Malcolm “Mudduckk” Campbell
To whet your appetite we gave you an in progress video from the Forsyth Vaquero project on 17-Feb. Many of you have patiently awaited this follow up where I show you the completed work.
While this post comes to you on May 6th the actual project completion was shot (scroll to end) on April 1st. Hence, the good doctors have been happy customers for going on 6 weeks. The lag between then and now can best be explained by success. You see when you are a job creating LOTC (low-overhead-trade-contractor) like me, success means you end up spending quite a bit of time in the field doing the work, getting dirty, getting tired, and just plain having fun. It’s difficult to post in real time.
Since the time of April Fool’s, the Crew and I have been out there in the mud the blood and the beer; finishing up The Cooler, an encore to The Encore, resolving punchlist on the Urban Canvas, as well completing two new projects projects in The Bootlegger and The Manor.
In this feature we bring you a video post.
The shot starts with a lovely stained glass window. You should know the glass is not original to the house, but the window itself is. Would you believe the previous owner covered it up with a fiberglass shower enclosure, Eww! See the photos;
The stained glass is by Mike Bomar of Bomar Glass, Toledo, OH . The house is blessed with several stained glass features which may be seen in the fall issue of the American Bungalow Magazine, #71. Mike used these for his inspiration.
Well done Mike! Hat tip to you for your artistic creativity.
In the “ready for tile” video we previewed the materials. In this shot (scroll to end) you see them put in place; 5/8×5/8 Cararra marble mosaics on the floor, 3×6 Hampton crackled glaze subway tiles on the wall along with ogee trim and mosaic return. Tile is courtesy of Virginia Tile Company, Livonia, MI. Here also you get to see how we carefully mixed in cut-to-fit Cararra slabs on the window sill and jambs, the radiator enclosure, and wrapping the threshold. We used slabs to enhance the look as well as provide additional watertightness in key areas.
Here Bomar also provided the freestanding walk behind glass wall. It gives what is otherwise a smallish bungalow bath a larger open feel while not blocking the view of the window. The shower barrier is only 36″ wide, yet we need not worry about water splashing about because of the shower head’s overhead orientation. Designers take note on this compact trick.
We kept quite a few of the original items, because they just are not made like they used to; the site-built medicine cabinet, the pedestal sink, and the terrazzo floor and base. More on the terrazzo restoration (here)
We did put new reproduction faucet sets on the sink (and Dr. Vaquero pointed up the metals in bronze). I put a new marble mosaic inlay in the floor to create symmetry in the exquisite border (in its original configuration the border must have flowed under a claw tub completing a rectangle about the room).
Bathroom accessories are from Pottery Barn (here and here) and the Paris style towel shelf available from Amazon (here). Plumbing fixtures are from Strom, “sign of the crab”, Plumbing. Paints are all Benjamin Moore colors as selected by Dr. Vaquero. The gal has guts. Dr. F does too, giving he held firm on retaining the terrazzo.
The doctors took great risk; bold color scheme, mixing old things with with new – slabs with tile, a walk behind wall and a window in the shower. Oh my! All in all the finish is quite rewarding and a great fit for their home. Remember reward follows risk, so while the bath may not be plain vanilla, this bathroom is for them. They know it and they love it. I love it too!
We pulled this off by working a group process, one in which they were firmly in control yet confidently led by yours truly. I was so pleased to be their builder. Enjoy the video. It is our gift to you.
Presently we are out at two fill-in-projects, The Pool and The Pan before we head off to the Ft Wayne project.
Happy tiling! And be sure to let me know what you think by hitting the like button up above or taking the time to leave a comment below.
Malcolm “Mudduckk” Campbell is a tile installer in Toledo, Ohio. Tilers play in the mud! Toledo is home of the Mud Hens minor league baseball, sometimes call the Mud Ducks. So you know a tile setter from Toledo would have to go by the nickname “Mudduckk.”  In fact, there could be many Mudduckks in Toledo, but only one of them is tops in Google Search. That one is Malcolm. Got Tile? Google: Mudduckk!