Over the past few years, the brothers have become close to Brian and Meghan McCarthy, a father and daughter who want to renovate the gathering areas of their large Las Vegas home so their growing family can enjoy the space together.
With a $90,000 budget, Jonathan and Drew believe they can rework the great room, including the kitchen, and create a dedicated game room as well. In the process, they give us some fascinating renovation tips that could work in our own homes, too.
Big, fat TV = Huge eyesore that really must go
“I’m pretty sure we had that same TV when we were 12 years old,” says Jonathan as he spies a big, chunky TV mounted high on a shelf in a corner. So many homes have at least one similar TV that the owners just haven’t gotten around to replacing. The brothers believe that nothing else dates a room like an old-school TV, and new ones are not that expensive.
“As we expand our technological horizons, we reduce the thickness of our TVs,” Drew points out.
Drop the dropped ceiling
In the 1990s, when open floor plans were just coming into fashion, builders often tried to define the kitchen space with a dropped ceiling. But this only made the kitchen look darker and cramped. Luckily this ceiling feature is easy to cut off—and immediately the kitchen feels more spacious!
Have two types of flooring? Make it look intentional
In the center of the kitchen is a multilevel, oddly shaped island, which Jonathan plans to replace with a more functional island. The problem is, when he removes the old island, he finds that tiles lining the kitchen floor weren’t installed underneath the island. That space is a bare, ugly cement slab.
There’s no budget for new floors, so Jonathan cleverly designs an island that will cover most of the space. Then he puts a gorgeous tile border around it to cover up the gaps, so “it looks like an intentional design choice” he says.
All white is all right if you add shapes and texture
Meghan, it seems, is very traditional, and wants an all-white kitchen with no built-in pops of color. No problem!
“For variety, you can use shape and texture rather than color,” says Drew. “I love the fact that we’re able to use shape and texture to add interest, rather than always having to add color.”
They accomplish this by installing new brass knobs and pulls that “provide a nice contrast and add a touch of glam,” says Drew. They also use a curved chevron backsplash tile, a twist on the classic style, to give it a feminine touch while staying within one color scheme.
Brilliant seating for a theater/game room
Meghan and Brian want to make the family room do double duty as a game/movie room, and the Scott brothers have all sorts of ideas for this, including adding beanbag seating which can be moved around for the different activities. The seating is great for both kids and adults, and it’s really comfy! What’s old is new again!
Update that wet bar
Wet bars used to be a selling point in a home, but over the past several years, they’ve started to feel a little dated—like the type of place where your parents used to serve wine cocktails to their friends while they listened to LPs on the hi-fi. Retro is in, but those dark wood and Formica wet bars are not.
The brothers update Meghan and Brian’s wet bar with a bright white quartz top, white cabinetry, open shelving in place of closed wood cabinetry, and a wine fridge. Suddenly the wet bar looks fresh and hip, rather than old and dated.
Leave a secret message
Jonathan is installing new, custom bench seating with storage space underneath in the game room, and suggests that they write a “time capsule message” inside. Chances are very few people will ever see it, but when someone finds it, it could be a real treat, even if it’s a different homeowner. No harm in taking a Sharpie pen and scribbling something fun, right?
Do the Scott brothers deliver?
Finally, when the project is finished and the last plate placed, the entire McCarthy family comes home to see what miracles Brian and Meghan and the Scott brothers have wrought. They’re blown away by everything, but are especially tickled by the custom puzzle Jonathan and Drew made for them from a favorite family portrait, with the brothers digitally added in.
Having pieced together the perfect forever home, Jonathan and Drew now move to their next project.
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