Wisconsin Farm House Renovation
Increasing bathroom space in a century-old farmhouse
Fall Creek, Wisconsin
Designer Adrienne Dorig Leland’s award-winning small bath design incorporates a Geberit in-wall dual-flush toilet system, increasing space while decreasing water usage.
The dairy-farming community of Fall Creek, Wisconsin prides itself on enjoying a modern lifestyle while maintaining its rural past.
Fall Creek is a small but growing central Wisconsin community of 1,300 with limited accommodations. The owners of a turn-of-the-century Fall Creek farmhouse wished to improve their main-floor guest bathroom to accommodate overnight visitors. One of the crucial challenges facing Adrienne Dorig Leland, CKD, of Dorig Designs in Eau Claire, Wisconsin, was to “open up” the tiny guest bath space on the main floor. Improvements to the space had to include shower and toilet accessibility and conveniences for her client’s older guests.
When the guest bathroom door opened it collided with the clawfoot bathtub, allowing very little maneuvering space. A low ceiling and narrow, windowless layout made the space feel extremely cramped and confined. Dorig had to use every bit of existing space efficiently with a design that complemented the rustic style of the farmhouse. A creative use of modern plumbing technology would allow for water-efficient, sustainable amenities that could also reduce stress on the rural septic system. Every critical inch of space had to be accounted for.
The perfect solution for saving those precious inches was a Geberit Concealed Tank and Carrier System with a Bolero dual-flush plate and wall-hung, adjustable-height Duravit toilet . The in-wall Geberit system hides the toilet tank and plumbing hardware inside the wall, allowing flexibility in positioning of the toilet – especially important in older houses. The dual-flush valve also reduces stress on the farmhouse’s septic system and leach field. The Geberit dual-flush system lets the user choose between a standard flush (1.6 gpf/6 lpf) for solids and a low-volume flush (0.8 gpf/3 lpf) for liquids.
To maximize the limited space, Dorig removed the old floor-mount toilet and the bathtub, keeping the style simple, functional, and cutting-edge. Dark porcelain tile on the walls and floor gives the bathroom the rustic look of distressed wood, while bright white accents like the Geberit flush plate, recessed sink, medicine cabinet, and shower tile provide sharp contrast.
The homeowner requested “ease-of-use” for older guests. The Geberit in-wall toilet tank with wall-hung toilet and easy flushing, plus a walk-in curbless, doorless shower, was the right way to go. To make further use of the remaining bathroom space, Dorig also installed a pocket door and a narrow but deep vanity with a semi-recessed sink.
“The customer loved the improved space and the contrasting design.” — Adrienne Dorig Leland, CKD
Dorig’s “green” design reduces overall energy consumption with LED lights, an exhaust fan that adjusts automatically by detecting humidity levels, an air-injected faucet and hand shower, and, of course, the Geberit dual-flush system. Walls and floors are finished with tile containing recycled content and grout with low VOC. Shelving is made from reclaimed materials, and the countertop is made of glass-fiber reinforced concrete with recycled material that uses less Portland cement than regular concrete.
Dorig’s design achieved third place in the Small Bath Category of the
2015 National Kitchen and Bath Association (NKBA) Design Contest
. Winners were chosen from 300 entries across six main kitchen and bath categories and ten specialty categories. Entries were scored on safety and ergonomics, elements and principles of design, design planning, creativity, and presentation.