Tuesday, July 31, 2012


The baseboards are in! All that is left for the millwork is shoe molding, which will go in after the floors are done, and picture rail, which will go in after the painting is done.

The baseboards were not all that fun. I had to replace long runs on two walls and then five short areas around the big opening and pocket doors. The long runs we're eight and twelve feet, and the short runs we're anywhere from two inches to a foot and a half. Each section of baseboard consists of a ten inch high main board and then a highly decorative, two inch high cap.

The top two or three inches of the main boards are comprised of a reeded areas and beaded areas. So of a twelve inch high baseboard, about half of it is decorative millwork. Because I was joining to existing baseboards, I had to do coped joints. It pretty much sucked. 

I won't go in to the details of a coped joints. You can Google it if you're interested. I will say that anyone who says coped joints are easy is either a highly skilled craftsman, only working with relatively flat stock, or doesn't really care that their joints look like crap.  

I read about and used the tricks like cutting a 45 degree miter to expose the profile and rubbing the edge with a pencil to highlight the edge. I clamped the boards to a workbench and used a brand new copping saw. It still isn't easy. My only saving grace was that I am painting the wood, so I could fill my less than perfect joints with caulk and putty.

The real benefit of being finished with the baseboards is that I can finally paint! That's right, I have paint on the walls. I had sort of settled on blue, but it never really sat well with me. For the past week and a half I've had paint chips pinned to the walls in my office at work. It is amazing how little I paid attention on a few long conference calls over the past week or so while I stared at paint chips. 

In the end I made a hasty, last minute decision and went with Sherwin Williams's Antiquity for the field, Chamomile for the trim, and Lucent something or other (Lucent Technologies? No, that can't be it) for the frieze and ceiling. Anyway, I don't entirely hate it, so that is a good sign.

This type of decision making doesn't always work out for the best. I hastily chose butternut squash for the butler's pantry only to get it on the walls and realize that is the same color used for traffic cones. 


Melissia said...

There is an article in the New York Times about how many old pianos are being taken to the dump because no one wants them. It is one of the most emailed ones. A website is mentioned, where you can adopt a free piano. I thought of you and you piano window. There are quite a few listed for California. The website is
I look forward to your continued progress on your house.

Greg said...

Tragic yet interesting. I checked out the site and there was nothing c.ose to Eureka. Very typical. I liked that you knew to call my little window high the wall a piano window.


purejuice said...

khaki and red (stained glass), one of my favorite chic color combinations. masculine and snappy. yay!
it all looks so beautiful, this must be like getting godzilla off your back.

Melissia said...

Greg, I know that you have many other projects to keep you occupied. Perhaps sometime in the future one close to will become available.
I am working on my 1902 Queen Anne Victorian and have learned many things by reading your blog. Thanks for all your help!

Laura said...

You are making great progress on the house. Was there dust on your camera lens? Do you see all the orbs in your photos? I love your stained glass windows.

Laura said...

Love those pocket doors, stained glass, and fireplace. Great job.

Greg said...

Laura, thanks. I'm not sure if that is dust on the lens or dust in the air. Keeping the house clean during the project is almost I possible. It wouldn't surmise me if that was dust on the lens.