Using Solid Surfaces on Every Surface

Jack Hussey, owner of Jack's Custom Woodworking in Burlington, Mass., is no stranger to remodeling.

March 31, 2003


The solid-surface floor includes one of the bathroom’s most creative aspects: the custom-designed medallion. Jack Hussey patented the design, and the Avonite pieces were custom-cut and fabricated using his router. "We had to get a little creative as to how we glued it down and what we used for grout," says Hussey, who opted for a two-part epoxy system and standard grout. He also ripped the back of the Avonite panels before gluing them down to encourage better bonding with the concrete.

Jack Hussey, owner of Jack's Custom Woodworking in Burlington, Mass., is no stranger to remodeling. He has worked as a solid-surface fabricator and remodeler trade partner for more than 30 years. To capitalize on the 5 feet added to the back of their home during a kitchen remodel three years previous (when a second bathroom also was added), Hussey and his wife decided to turn the older bathroom into a private master bath.

The older, 6x7-foot bathroom contained only a shower and a water closet. The space was enlarged by borrowing space from the laundry room and spreading out into the new addition. With help from Avonite, which offered all 22-23 sheets of solid-surface material used for the project, Hussey set out to create a bathroom that was both form and fantasy, adding the newest, most desirable accessories while incorporating the couple's personal touches.

Drawn to Avonite's solid-surface material because he says the polyester/acrylic blend gives it high gloss, sheen and a deeper polish, Hussey did his own fabricating and used the solid-surface material for almost every facet of the remodel, including the ceiling, floor, shower surround and base, door and window casings, and both backsplashes.

The completed, 112-square-foot bathroom features an enclosed water closet with a bidet seat attachment, a heated towel warmer, his and her sinks, radiant-heat floors and increased storage space from the addition of more cabinets. A black Jacuzzi whirlpool with cascading waterfall backdrop, and the pendant chandelier poised over it, serve as the centerpiece of the room.

Lighting and color serve as equally important attractions in achieving the look and feel of the space. Fluted columns and tub-set insets, made with products from Avonite's glass series, have rope lights that allow the room to be lighted in one of four colors (the color wheel also can alternate among all four colors or display a gradation of any color combination). In addition, because of privacy concerns given the bathroom's first-floor location, the room's sole window was leaded and painted so natural light would not be compromised and overlooked.


Installing radiant heat was a challenge because this home, an old farmhouse almost 200 years old, had a concrete slab foundation. Hussey ripped up the concrete all the way down to the earth and had to remove an old rock septic system (as the bathroom occupied the place of a slaughterhouse in the farmhouse's layout). Once the ground was leveled and compacted, Hussey added a vapor barrier, wire mesh and the heating system, and poured another concrete slab.

"The window faces dead east, so when the sun comes up, the colors that come in are awesome, and they bounce all over the room," Hussey says. "All the lighting makes the room real cozy, comfortable and romantic."

The approximately $50,000 job provided the Husseys with the updated bathroom they needed and the lushness and individuality they craved.

"This bathroom is us. It's everything we ever wanted," Hussey says. "It's fun, very pleasant, and it has my wife's signature on it. It's our style."

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