Tuesday, March 30, 2010

It wouldn't be a DIY project with out an issue?

I posted about how we were working on the bathroom. And I've been asked for pictures. Well here's the issue we've run into (the reason we haven't posted any pictres).

When we were installing the new light fixture we ran into an issue. The box that is in the wall, the one where the wires come through, you know the one you mount the light fixture to? Well it wasn't mounted to anything inside of the wall. It's supposed to be mounted to a couple 2x4's. that are either the studs or connected to the studs. This one wasn't. It was just sitting in the wall, hanging out. It's no longer hanging out, because as we were trying to figure out why the fixture was "rocking" the dry wall cracked. A little inspection caused the box to seperate from the wall. Basically it was bonded in there with paint. And then the old fixture was a wide fixture, so there wasn't pressure AT the box exactly. But this new light fixture puts all the pressure at and right around the box.

So now we have to get that sitch fixed before we can install the light. We still don't have a mirror to put in (the old mirror was trash). And so that's why there are no pictures. But as soon as the wee one wakes up from her nap I will be uploading some photo's of the living room so we can all at least ohhhh & ahhhh over what a transformation THAT was!

Saturday, March 27, 2010

So much painting has happened!

And I haven't shared any pictures. I know...whats the point of this blog if I'm not going to keep up with our progress? Well it's been busy.

We hired a painter to tackle our living room and master bedroom. He did a great job, but we won't be needing a painter ever again. We watched his technique, asked questions. And now we're better painters than ever! To test out our new skills we painted the bathroom. And we did a great job! We make a good team as long as we aren't BOTH painting. The Mister preps, and I paint. It's a perfect system for us.

We are going to be busy painting ALL.THE.TRIM in the house this weekend (well all that we haven't done). We still need to pick out a color for the basement and the upstairs bathroom. I have an idea of what I want to do there, I just need to find the perfect colors to pull it all off.

So things are going to remain busy here this weekend. Hopefully I can snap some pictures and finish up the updates!

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Wow, what a little color can do.

First let me say paying someone to paint our living room was the smartest thing we've ever ever ever done before. Best money ever spent. Worth every penny. And every other smart spending saying out there.

Lets review here's the living room's before pictures. (It's pretty much necessary to view these first if you haven't seen them before, or at least to refresh your mind!)

Here is our painter Dwaine.

He was using tinted primer. So pretty much, that color is the color of the walls. Here's another picture to show you that this is going to make a major change in the room!
I really cant describe how the mood of the room totally changed with a different color. It feels lighter. More mellow. More airy. It feels so much better.

Now I'm going to post a couple pictures of the wall, but this isn't going to serve as a BEFORE/AFTER post because we are getting new furniture, and we need stuff ON the walls. Once that is done I'll be posting a real post that compares the before room to the after and we can all ohhhhh & ahhhh!

You can't really tell from these pictures (I can't seem to win on making them the size I want them, they are either always too big or always too small) but we've also repainted all the trim. (You can actually still see some tape above the door in the last picture!). What a difference. It all just POPs a little bit more.

Now this view is going to be one of our next project. We are repainting the spindles a bright white. And then we're refinishing the rail and posts. They will be a very dark stain. It should be a great contrast! BUT what in the world am I going to hang on that wall? If you looked at the "before" shots you'll see they had pictures and a coat hanger thingie. Well I don't really want to hang pictures like that. And we've tossed around the idea of putting a coat hook thing like they had. But we're not sure. I'm sure things will look different once we've stained the railing. Maybe that will give us some direction.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Weekend Projects

They aren't all HGTV makes them out to be.

Which is probably due to the fact they condense all that work into an hour, sometimes 30 minutes.

And you get to sick back and watch a whole team of people (at least 4 but up to a few dozen!) work on a room or a set of rooms. The reality is weekend projects aren't like that in the real world (or at least in my reality of the real world!)

Trying to do work with a 7 month old means either one person works while the other plays/feeds/changes/rocks the baby. Or nothing gets done until bedtime (which thanks to the time change is an hour later).

Last night Mr. C & I started on the bathroom, we worked from 7ish-to after midnight. And really we only got the walls washed, prepped, and the ceiling painted (we'd already removed all the hardware off the walls).

Today we're going to be painting the walls and painting the doors to the closet, bathroom and bedroom. Hopefully we can get the wee one to nap where I can at least get ONE coat of paint on the walls!!

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Watch out bathroom....

We are about to rock your world!

The bathroom is needing some serious overhaul. The painter we have hired for the living room is also going to do the bedroom. So we don't have to mess around with that. But the bathroom....the bathroom is all us. And I am going to take a sick satisfaction from it.

The ceiling, the walls, the hardware, the cabinets. It will all be changing!!

This is the bathroom currently (I will take more pictures right before the work starts!):

It's not the best picture, so I'll need to go in and take some more so that I have good before and afters.

We are repainting the walls with a beautiful cinnamon color. We are staining the cabinets a darker shade. We are repainting the ceiling. We are replacing the light fixtures and the hardware. Oh and we're replacing the mirror.

The only thing we aren't doing right now is replacing the floors. And the reason is funds. would it be easier to do it all at once? Of course. But we are still deciding on what floors we want, and so far our taste exceeds the funds available. So instead of settling we're going to make it something that we like and will enjoy until we can get to the floors.

I will have more to tell of the end plan of the bathroom(s) in the before and after post. While we were hoping this project would be our weekend project, it will probably take a couple of weeks just because of some other scheduling issues. But I can't wait for it to be done and us to show you the final product!

Friday, March 12, 2010

Let the painting begin!

Our living room is a deep shade of....of...a brownish green, olive maybe? Either way it isn't something we love. But we've watched enough HGTV to know to never hold wall colors against a house. So we looked past it and I started searching. We knew we needed to find new colors for every room. I searched blogs, I talked to friends, I took home paint chips from Lowes, HD & SW's. I found a color we loved on a blog that I've mentioned here before (I've actually talked about this color before). I can't resist showing the picture for those who are just quickly scrolling:

Just looking at the picture I am so excited for the change. It looks so relaxing, so soothing, so perfect.

When we close on our house we talked to our REA about a painter. We knew that the living room was too much of a project for us. The ceilings are vaulted, and we knew our limitations. Not only time, but the trouble. It is worth the money to us. Our REA got us in touch with the painter that he recommends for clients that are selling, it's also the painter he uses for his own home. As a housewarming present our agent is paying for the paint, and we are paying for the labor. It's a great deal, and this painter is very well priced. He is not only going to paint the walls for us, but he's also going to fix the baseboards, and clean up the ceiling from previous paint jobs.

I am excited to see the transformation...it's going to be MAJOR!

Thursday, March 4, 2010

The Pantry is Complete.

Functionally complete. We've got some other things that we're doing that will add some finishing touches. But for now, the project as we currently had it planned is complete.

There used to be a washer and drier area in the kitchen. The previous owners had a great laundry area built in the basement. They had plans for the area of the kitchen but never got around to making their ideas a reality. Once we realized we wouldn't ever use this area for its intended purpose, we knew right away that it would make an amazing pantry. (we have left everything needed to convert this area back to a washer and drier area just in case we ever NEED to move it, or we sell and the next owners want it to be on the main level).

This was our first real house project, and it sorta took a detour. The stud finder we used (and contrary to what our friends think, even though they were helping they weren't the studs) picked up a drainage pipe as a stud. The pipe is tight against the wall, this is the only reason we think this happened.

The drilling started, and after nine holes the walls cried their tiny tears.

The project immediately came to a screeching halt while we formed a plan, (a few plans too, just in case). We had to cut out the portion of the pipe that had been drilled into (by we I mean my dear husband, and two of our friends. The wee one doesn't know much about DIY and so her and I played in the living room during all of this).

The guys worked for MANY hours that night to get everything repaired so that the pipe was back in working order and the wall would be ready to be fixed the following day.

The next day the number of people working on the project went from three to two as one of our friends had to return back to Georgia after being a house guest for a few weeks (it was really helpful to have him here to help while moving, we really appreciate him!!
The second day of the project resulted in this:

Finally on Day Three....the sanding and priming and painting was complete on the repair. And we could get to installing the pantry!

Now that it is complete I am SO happy with how it turned out. It didn't take a few hours like we originally planned for it to. But it turned out great and in the end that's what matters most!

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

We are facing our first Home Owner Challenge (well besides the crying wall)

Whew, this is one of the stresses that has been weighing on my mind for a week or so now.

The upstairs bathroom has some, what appears to be, mold under the linoleum. It was located under the bathmat in front of the tub. We never would have thought to even LOOK there for it. It starts at the edge of the tub and comes out roughly a foot. I would say it's about three feet wide. This little square footage of area is causing so much stress. I have a firm understanding that when you usually SEE a problem, the problem is bigger than the surface.

We had a home inspection January prior to buying the house. He never looked under the bathmat. It was a MAJOR fault on his part, as an inspector to not look and catch something so major.

After thinking about it for a week I decided we should call the inspector, because it WAS his job to catch it. He was paid a fee, and what's the point in paying an inspector if he's not looking at things a normal person wouldn't think of? (Something as simple lifting the mat).

I spoke with the inspector today and he's coming over tomorrow to take a look at it and "put our heads together and see what can be done." I've done some research, talked to our REA and if tomorrow he doesn't come to the conclusion that he SHOULD have caught it (it's so obvious, and visible, he SHOULD have caught it) we will be taking the next step with the licensing people for Home Inspectors for our state as well as contacting his insurance company and seeing about putting in a claim anyways. The whole reason that they are insured is for situations like this, so we are hoping that he has enough integrity to admit there was a mistake and make it right.

Let me add a few things that we have checked (even though we are untrained so it really means very little) the floor doesn't feel soft, it doesn't have any real give to it. The walls aren't soft. The linoleum isn't rippled, soft, wavy or any of the other things we imagine would be happening if water had been causing damage for years. Or if it was a pipe issue from under the tub or in the wall. We really think it was just water coming over the side of the tub from the previous owners children taking a bath, playing, and getting in and out of the tub.

We won't know the extent of the damage, we won't have a plan of action...we won't have ANSWERS until sometime after tomorrow. So here's to hoping that things go our way with the inspector tomorrow!

Here are the pictures:

So now that I've shared the pictures any words of advice, wisdom, or a horror story that will cause me to lose some more sleep??!!

"Why are the holes you just drilled in the wall crying?"

The answer? The holes were drilled into a drainage pipe, a toilet was flushed...and tears formed.

Yes, we used a stud finder (I'll spare you all the stud jokes that get told during the use of a stud finder). The pipe is actually pressed against the dry wall. They probably figured it didn't matter because it was a laundry room. Well Mister Builder Man...it does matter when a handful of years later a sweet couple want to make your laundry room into a pantry. IT MATTERS!

So as I type this there are three guys in the one-day-pantry (ok not that dramatic, tomorrow the pantry SHOULD be finished). They are cutting out the dry wall and the pipe. Tomorrow morning we are going to replace the piece of pipe with new pipe and fix the dry wall, and then finish the pantry instillation.

So our first DIY house project isn't exactly going as planned.