Updating the second bathroom in a 1957 Alcoa Aluminum House

bathroom in alcoa aluminum house

It has been great fun to watch the continuing transformation of Steven and Michael’s 1957 Alcoa Aluminum House. So far, I have done four other stories on their home:

Now, the latest installment: Steven and Michael update the second bathroom in their house… the mid-century-meets-modern design includes a unique inlaid linoleum floor design and 6″ grey glass tiles on the wall.

design of a mid century bathroom

The inlaid floor is a “compass design”, which Steven said a friend helped with.

renovating a bathroom in an alcoa aluminum house

Steven details the other components in the bathroom:

The fixtures are similar to the ones that we used in the other bathroom remodel. Duravit sink and toilet, Kohler hardware in the bathtub/shower with thermostatic temperature control, restoration hardware lights on either side of the custom built(by us, haha) medicine cabinet. We decided to keep the existing tub because it was in very good shape and we liked the style of it very much.

bathroom ceiling in an alcoa aluminum house
The ceiling light grid is original and is the same as in the other bathroom. The walls are gray glass tile and the floor is linoleum with an inlay linoleum starburst. I have to say that is my favorite part of the renovation, I just never envisioned that it would turn out like it did.

gray glass tile bathroom

Well done, Steven and Michael — what’s next?

Check out all the photos of Steven and Michael’s house on Steven’s flickr site here.

Be-Safe-graphic2.3

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Comments

  1. Karen says

    Absolutely awesome!! The attention to detail is amazing. I love everything they did. I did some surfing and found an article about one in Grand Rapids, MI. The article said 3 were built in MI–Grand Rapids, Southfield and Flint. I live in metro Detroit and would love to see all of them!

    • Steve says

      I have posted the original national sales brochure for the Alcoa Aluminum House demonstration project and it contains a list of the homes on page 15. If you do a google map search you can usually tell if there is an Alcoa House by the cut outs in the roof for the court yard and by the white roof.

  2. MCM is Grand says

    So beautiful! The contrasts of color, material and natural light are truly stunning. Congratulations! Can you tell us about the St. Theresa statue in the dining room? (enjoyed the flickr site as well)

    • Steve says

      The St. Theresa statue dates back to the early 1900’s and it was given to my aunt by her priest. I think that it was going to be disposed of so he wanted to find a home for it.

  3. says

    Can you elaborate on how the floor was executed? I’m in the planning stages of redoing our bathroom and the idea of not having grouted seams all over the place is appealing to me.

    • Steve says

      That was also our thought too since all of walls were going to have seams on them we wanted a solid floor. The main portion of the floor is a single sheet on which the template was placed and the pattern cut out. The arms of the star were cut out and then divided an half, with one of the halves being put back in the floor and the other being used as a template to make the darker half of the arm. Once it was down we used Linoleum specific cleaner and wax.

      • says

        Thanks for the info. So it’s just one big sheet of linoleum? After looking at your bathroom I got the idea to use one of those garage floor epoxy kits. They are a continuous surface, self leveling, and very resistant to stains or damage.

  4. Steve says

    I want to thank everyone for all of the kind words. We are very pleased with how it turned out. Finishing it is a bit bittersweet for this is the last space in the house to renovate. It has been quite a ride for almost 4 years diving into the period and looking for items to fill it’s contents with and coming up with the ideas for it’s renovation. Perhaps some relaxing is in the future 🙂

  5. CindyD says

    Love it! That floor is amazing, simple but striking. I love that the toilet and sink are wall mount – such a clean look! Beautiful job, Steven and Michael!

  6. Dorothea says

    LOVE what you did. Got a question about the tub. I have the same tub, but it’s pink. I was going to replace it until I saw yours. Did you reglazed it?because it looks fabulous.

    • Steve says

      The tub was not reglazed and it cleaned up nicely. I don’t think that it was used that much over the years.

    • Tisha says

      I, too, have that tub, but I wasn’t lucky enough to have one in such stellar shape. I had it reglazed and I’m pretty happy with the results 8 years later, although there are a couple of spots where the reglaze has unstuck itself.

  7. Gavin Hastings says

    Envy is a sin.
    I am a big time sinner.

    Don’t be sad about finishing.
    A house is never really finished.

    I truly wish you years of happiness.
    Job well done.

  8. effika says

    Those glass wall tiles are killer. Such a good blend of old & new style.

    This bathroom is so sleek and handsome.

    Absolutely great inspiration. Thank you for sharing it with us!

  9. says

    The entire bathroom is a thing of beauty. But I have to admit that I am most attracted to the practical aspects of the wall-hung fixtures. They must take up less space and make cleaning much easier than traditional fixtures?

    I have seen those old tubs and yours really shines in the new surroundings, bravo!

    • Steve says

      The fixtures fit in with the care-free aspect of the house. Goodman designed the home in 1957 based on feedback from the 1956 Women’s Congress on Housing.

  10. ElizaJane says

    That toilet is kind of freaking me out. But my practical side sez “that would sure be easy to mop under”.

    • Steve says

      Why is it freaking you out?? Lots of our friends question it’s stability……My standard reply is…..”If you think that you can knock down a wall than you shouldn’t sit on it :)” There is a large steel mounting unit that is behind the wall bolted onto 2*8 boards so it isn’t going anywhere!!!!

      • ElizaJane says

        “Give me a place to stand, and I shall move the earth with a wall-mounted toilet….er, lever” — Archimedes

        Your wall-mounted toilet becomes a lever when you sit on it.

  11. Morgan says

    Would you please give details on the wall mount light fixtures to the sides of the medicine cabinet. Are they purchased and from where? I need to replace similar lighting units in my 1959 bathroom. Would like to keep the same slim lines and naked tube lighting, but get rid of the starters mine require and the chrome is rusting.

    • Steve says

      The floor is made by Armstrong and it is a white and black. To the eye it does not look white but it was the lightest shade of white that was available.

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