Sunday, September 19, 2010

Warts and All

I think I would have made the annual Home Tour being held on October 3rd this year. The front door and pocket doors won’t be done for lack of hardware, but the rest of the foyer and stair hall will be. The only things remaining are the base shoe molding and the stair runner carpet. I also need to redo one piece of the picture rail, and of course do a lot of cleaning.

I’m going to start shopping for stair runner next week. There are huge selections on-line, but I will first see if I can find something local. I dread going in to local businesses to shop for this sort of thing. It is like if I don’t walk in wearing a suit and tie I practically need to jump up and down to get someone’s attention. It is very frustrating.

The first place I went to when I shopped for carpet for my last house, I told the salesman I wanted to install carpet in 3 bedrooms, a hallway and the stairs and the first thing he showed me was the indoor/outdoor carpeting. I looked at him with an irritated glare and said, “No, inside my house”. His response was, “Well, I just assumed….” And then he trailed off. The rest of the time we spent together he acted like he had someplace else to be. Honestly, must I be forcd to shave a put on cologne just to shop for carpet? I ended up spending close to $3,000 on carpet at a different store. That place screwed up the installtion schedule, though. From the time I purchased the carpet it took more than 6 weeks to get it installed.

The plan is to do a 27-inch runner all the way up the stairs. The treads are a little beat up, so I might go a little wider. I knew they would be far from perfect, but there has never been a plan to replace them. It goes against my philosophy of ripping out and replacing something just because it isn’t perfect. I realize that needs to be done at times, but it will always be a last resort for me. I try and adhere to the 3 Rs of environmentalism: Reduce, Recyle, and Resuse.

I told myself I was going to hire a pro to sand the floor this time. This is my 5th time sanding and refinishing a floor and the process still somewhat eludes me. This one came out better than some and worse than others. I think part of my problem has to do with the crappy equipment I must rent from Don’s Rent-All.

I swear the sander I got on Saturday was from the 1950s. It did not even have the lever to lift the drum off the floor. They are really the only game in town, though. It is either Don’s or a 30 mile round trip to Mckinleyville. Unfortunately, without more competition there is no reason for them to upgrade the equipment. Most of the rest of the developed world uses the U Sand instead of the drum sander, which is a technology that is 100 years old or more. Come on Don’s! It is 2010. Get with the times.

The main reason I did the floor myself this time was because I woke up Saturday morning and thought, “Ok, what’s next”. The answer was the floor. At that point I could have started calling people to get estimates and set up a work time or just go and rent a sander. It seems easier and quicker just to rent the sander. Maybe the reason I am such a DIYer is because I have such poor planning skills. Had I planned better I would have started calling for estimates 2 weeks ago. I have a feeling I will be installing the stair runner myself.

The following pictures are titled, "What I did for my summer vacation", because thanks to the airport fiasco I didn't go to Philadelphia. It still hurts.


Karen Anne said...

Looks totally amazing, though.

I will be interested to read about the stair runner. One of those is on my own list.

John said...


Christine Thresh said...

I read your blog all the time. I love seeing your progress.
I had to get my stair runner all the way from England. I did a blog post about our house improvements and the runner. There is a link in the post to the source of the wool runner.

St. Blogwen said...

Oooooooh, pretty!

Damn. I guess that means I should have done something like that one of these past weekends...

Kate H.
The Sow's Ear

Jesse said...

You should be so proud to know that you have brought the welcome back to the hall. It seem to me old houses are like people. You can paint and construct the out side but the inside is where the heart is. I do not own an old house but I have looked at so many on line that the people totally change the way the inside looked but the house never seems to be complete. However your house seems to be waking from a long sleep and is smiling.

You should search Hospitality carpets the kind that they use in hotels many designs are straight out of the Victorian era and they are made to last. That is what I plan to do if I ever get a Victorian.

Holyoke Home said...

Congratulations! It looks gorgeous.

Greg said...

Thanks everyone. Tonight I had the first "fresh look" at the room as I walked in after work. I really do like it.

Thanks for the link Christine. There is soooo much to chose from on-line. The first local carpet store I went to today had almost nothing to chose from in the way of wool carpets, let alone carpet that could be used as a runner. I don't mind the occasional olefin rug, but I want the stair runner to last.

I won't be on the home tour this year, but I hope all of the others will be ready.

Omar said...

Damn, that's nice..

Marilyn said...

What a beautiful change, Greg, from that dark dingy before.
You should have signed up for the tour anyway. Our annual tour is the same time as yours and the ones I like best are the ones being worked on. The finished ones are kinda boring.

Jamie said...

Wow! That is lovely!