Before & After: Drew's Fantastic Factory Conversion

Before & After: Drew's Fantastic Factory Conversion

Janel Laban
Sep 7, 2010

Name: Drew
Location: Norwood neighborhood of Cincinnati, Ohio

Our 'house' was a very broken down brake repair facility with a beautiful stone facade and lovely steel trusses. My wife and I purchased the building (built in 1934) and, for some reason, despite having very limited construction experience at the time believed that we could make it something very special. I think we did it!

We took great care to highlight what was great about the structure and created an open concept with intimate spaces where it was appropriate (bedrooms, dining room) very suited to entertaining which we love to do.

We built a secondary roof to allow us to insulate the roof while exposing the beautiful beams and even more beautiful roof decking (which in 1934 were repurposed from a previous building on the site).

It was important to us not to lose the original industrial feel so we poured a new concrete floor (to house the radiant heat) and welded new steel windows (which can open) but softened it with tapestries and floral wallpaper behind the trusses. The clean lines and svelte silhouettes of our furniture contrast with the beefy lumber and heavy steel structural elements of the space.

In all things we wanted to revel in the conflicts and achieve an overarching balance; cozy and strong, open and intimate, old and new.

For lots more info and images, check out: Drew's blog.

Thanks, Drew!

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Images: Drew

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