Photos courtesy of Alchemy Architects
As part of a yearlong renovation in Minneapolis completed in 2013, principal architect Geoffrey Warner of Alchemy Architects transformed a 1950s Minneapolis ranch home to focus on energy efficiency and accessibility.
One of the biggest changes in the remodel came when the two dark, tight bathrooms in the core of the house were updated into one space that’s now lighter and brighter thanks to light borrowed from other spaces in the home.
To increase natural light and help the room feel more spacious, Warner first added a skylight and a south-facing door that brings light into the room through the passive solar hallway just outside. The change also added 18 inches onto the five-and-a-half-foot-wide corridor, allowing for more flexibility.
Next, Warner turned an adjacent, little-used bedroom into a boutique laundry space and added a large etched window along the hallway near the laundry space to further promote the flow of natural light.
Décor throughout reflects the home’s clean, modern aesthetic, with an IKEA vanity and custom-built walnut cubbies. For a personal touch, the owner custom-made a shower curtain from an enlarged pattern of a dragonfly wing using Tyvek. “I love the way the client has made the room their own with that simple, strong act,” Warner says.
The bath’s black-and-white palette serves as a classic backdrop, while subtle textural elements like hexagon tile in the shower add visual interest to the room. In the spirit of environmentalism, many custom elements in the bathroom come from salvaged materials: The towel bars by the shower are repurposed circular machine handles, the toilet paper holder is an industrial c-clamp, and the cast-iron bathtub is vintage.