A well-worn 1930’s home gets an entire makover for it’s new life as a 2017 modern family masterpiece.  


This was a beautiful stone home on a historic street.  Much attention was paid to the original character while making it a home for generations to come.
The best compliment I can receive as a home designer is: “We couldn’t tell where the orginal home stopped and the new addition began!”  That to me is Success when doing a whole home remodel in a historic neighborhood.
Of course, we all want an amazing open floor plan and shiny new finishes, but never at the expensive of the home’s overall character.  This home design blended traditional and modern perfectly, as well as, old and new architecture.  We even paid close attention that the hardwood floors were stained perfectly to match and followed the same direction.  All wood trim, heights and door knobs matched the original also.  It’s truly special.
My personal favorite design detail?  When you enter the front door, you can see all the way to the back yard through a beautiful 3-panel french door wall.  So open, so comfy, so clean and sooooo beautiful.
The specifics of this remodel:
We added 17 feet to the back of the house and then spread the whole width (about 40′).  It was 2 stories high with a matching dormer, eave height and roof line.  The awesome thing?  You can’t really even see it from the street.
We dug the basement 12″ deeper to create a higher 8′ ceiling instead of having that more cramped basement feel.  We also added a fully egressable window for a safe exit and more light in the bedroom along with a full bath.  A perfect guest suite.  We topped it off with a sports/play room with a hardwood floor look and tons of LED light for a bright fun area for the whole family to enjoy. 
The first floor was completely redone with an amazing gourmet kitchen and seating for 6 (I write in the blog the advantages of a galley kitchen with all seating out of the work triangle).  The kitchen also included a wetbar easily accessable from the dining room and patio and also a family logistics center (I’ll write more on the blog about the necessity of these areas).  Off the kitchen is a mudroom built for six and a dog with a pocket door (pocket doors are great because they can stay open or shut when company comes – no door in the way!)  Off the kitchen are his and her’s office spaces and the crowning glory – a formal dining room with the crowning light fixture.  These rooms are all interconneted and free flowing.  No children “under foot” in these busy areas.  
The 2nd floor has a full laundry where all the bedrooms are (another blog topic – why not keep the clothes where they orginate?), a much needed 4th bedroom with it’s cute little matching dormer and last, but certainly not least, a luxurious master bath and closet suite.
Plus…there’s a new garage with a stair to attic storage and basketball court!  Whew!  We packed a lot of punch in the remodel.  And on a 50’x150′ city lot!
Now…..I know what you’re thinking, “What’s so simple about all that new space?”  Let me tell you……simple doesn’t mean cramped or stark, it means simple.  This young family of 6 was outgrowing the house, but they LOVED the neighborhood.   So, they re-designed and stayed where they feel a sense of community and home – instead of building new somewher else.  This house functions like a well-oiled machine with EVERY room being used at full max.   Plus it’s beautifully finished.  Now THAT’S simple!

From the owners:
​”After listening to glowing recommendations from our friends and touring Traci’s work, we were very excited to meet with Traci from Homescaping to see if she was a good fit for our project.  After a short time into our meeting we were thrilled at how easy it was to talk with her and felt like she understood the direction we wanted to head. We knew that she was the one to help us with our addition and renovations.

Our story is a familiar one in Wauwatosa.  We love it here but we needed more house to live in.  With Traci’s guidance and creativity, we bumped out the back of our house, adding on to all three levels.  We moved walls, moved the kitchen, moved the powder room and added a much needed mudroom.  

With such a large renovation and addition, we were concerned about the integrity of the house; we were looking for flow throughout the rooms and wanted to make sure the old and the new didn’t fight each other.  Having the space in our home for our family to spread out, to entertain guests and to accommodate a home office is something that our original house was not designed for.

Traci served as our architect and general contractor.  She helped us choose fixtures, styles, colors and textures, and she made sure all the rooms flowed together.  Having Traci along for the whole process was a big plus for us and was one of the reasons we chose her for our endeavor.  She has a great eye, she’s very creative and she is open to input along the way.

In the end we love the space even more than we thought we would.  Traci did an excellent job helping us create a new look in an older home.  We were able to enjoy the process, even as she guided us through some tough decisions.  And she was budget conscious, helping with decisions about spending a little more on a certain item and when it was a good idea to spend less on something.  Her tradespeople were very professional and the craftsmanship throughout our home is just beautiful. But most importantly, we wouldn’t change a thing.”

A beautiful lanon stone center entrance colonial gets a makover for this busy family of 6.


Cramped and dated to beautifully functional modern family home.
We added a mudroom, wet bar, new floors and finishes to really update the look and make the space more functional and beautiful.  It also tied in the newly remodeled kitchen with the large family room addition.
The goal in the living room was to comfortably fit a family of 6 plus any visitors and/or relatives for large scale functions.  There are three walls of light, a new pergola and patio off two sliding french doors.  Really great for entertaining.
In the home office we added a closet for household necessities and some organization for four children.  Plus, it still functions well as a home office.
This five-fixture bath with a toilet hidden behind the door shown, makes for a great escape for mom and dad.  A large bedroom with three walls of windows and a large walk-in closet compliment the space.

From the owners:

If you’re planning a home remodel or addition in the Milwaukee area, Traci Elliott should be your only choice. Not only has she lived in the community for 20 years, she has completed more than 60 projects throughout the city. We took two years to interview architects and designers before we hired Traci and we could not be happier with our home’s outcome thanks to Traci.

The project scope included an addition which consisted of a family room, master bedroom and 5 fixture master bathroom. Also within the existing footprint, she designed our kitchen and mudroom. Traci helped us with a holistic approach for our home by selecting paint colors, granite, flooring, light fixtures, accessories and furniture arrangement so everything flowed and the house’s integrity was maintained. Traci also designed a new garage, pergola (arbor) and patio. She listened to our needs and goals and made the spaces inside and out beautiful and functional… all within our budget and allotted timeframe. Marrying the old with the new was a huge part of our project and Traci nailed it. She coached us every step of the way and we are grateful for her guidance.

When it came to our budget, we truly feel as if Traci managed our money as it was her own. She told us some areas that we may want to invest a little more in as well as items that could be purchased at discount retailers. Getting the most value for our dollar while creating a high quality, well-designed space was her goal.

During the project, Traci was here everyday checking on workers and their progress. If something wasn’t right or to her liking, she let them know and it was fixed expeditiously. She stayed in touch and communicated with us the entire time; we never had any questions as to where the project was or what were the next steps. Most importantly, we were left to live our lives, do our jobs and raise our family while she handled the entire project.

Most people hire a contractor for a project like ours, but Traci is much more than just a designer/contractor. She spent a lot of time with us before we started the process ensuring an addition/remodel was the right direction for us. Most helpful was the coaching aspect that she incorporated. She’d ask us questions like:

  • “Have you considered moving instead?” 
  • “What is the feeling you want from this space?” 
  • “What’s your everyday lifestyle?” 
  • “How often do entertain and how many people would you like to host?”]
  • “How do you want the house to function as it evolves through the next 10, 20, 30 years?”

She would talk through life events such as holidays, out of town guests, the prospect of more children and aging parents. These possibilities were considered as part of the design process – well before construction. The outcome is a house that we are proud to call home.  We have an addition that is second to none!  Traci Elliott is the first call we’ll make if we need new construction or renovations down the road.

​Busy parents, busy kids, busy house…from choppy and squished to open and spacious.  This was a fun design for a funky graphic designer.  

 This house is on a great historic street with a strong neighborhood that the owners did not want to leave.  Moving was out of the question, but they needed more space and wanted to upgrade. 

They wanted a “forever” house that their busy family could really enjoy.  Well they got it.  This house is bascially completely new and it is a gem. 

From the owners:

​”We hired Traci Elliott to design a major addition and renovation to our Wauwatosa home.  We could not be happier.  Traci had fantastic ideas for all aspects of the design – from structural changes to decorative and cosmetic features – and she tailored her plan to our personal tastes and lifestyle.

Traci also was our general contractor.  She gave us a projected end date on the six-month project before a single subcontractor had begun work, and the project was finished literally within days of Traci’s prediction.  She worked with us on a detailed budget from the outset so that we avoided nasty surprises down the road, and she repeatedly suggested design and construction alternatives to help hold down costs, even though that meant less money in her pocket.  Traci was a pleasure to work with on a personal level, too, always willing to accommodate our schedule to meet with us – often at late hours – to discuss project updates and any questions we had.

In other words, through Traci’s efforts and attention, we avoided all of the scheduling and budget “horror stories” so common to construction.  And we’re delighted with the result – a beautifully designed and built addition and remodel.  We can’t recommend Traci highly enough!

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