Sunday, April 27, 2008

Way Too Much Work

The baseboards took way more time than I thought they would. I disconnected the water heater Friday night and put the first coat of poly on the floor. Then Saturday I put on a second coat and started making baseboards. They really took a long time, but mainly because I didn’t know what I was doing.

The first problem was the shank on the main bit wasn’t long enough to put the profile where it needed to be. This caused lots of delay while I reevaluated everything. I eventually got almost what I wanted, but if I could do it over I would get closer. It took 5 passes on the router with different bits to do it, but I needed to do 6. Unfortunately, the last pass that needed to be done, should have been done first. Don’t ask.

The worst part is, I didn’t finish. I still have two baseboards to put on. I decided to cope the corners instead of miter and that ain’t easy. I had never done it before, so, you know, that sort of added to the problem. The main part of the baseboard, with just the double profile on it wasn’t too bad. The cap, with the heavy Victorian millwork was difficult. I only did one today and it took several tries to get it “right”. I’m lucky I’m painting so I can fill with caulk. I’ll leave it at that.

So I have two more baseboards – with two more coped joints {Ugh!} – then I have the shoe molding and the door. Its getting there.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Picking Out Pictures

I've been going through pictures the last few days, for reasons I'll talk about later. There have been zillions of pictures posted to the blog over the last few years. I think one can make the argument that the painting of my house was the most photographed and documented of any house painting since the dawn of time. Without exaggeration, I posted a blog entry pretty much every day for 6 or 7 months while I was painting my house. Of all of those blog entries, and of all of those pictures, this is one of my favorite.

The amount of work that went in to that photo is mind boggling, but looking at it now, I must say, it was worth it.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Kick back! Relax!

Sorry, no, not when it is the table saw that is kicking back.

I have something on my right thigh right now that matches what is on my hand. I was cutting a large, but thin piece of wood to construct the box that the water heater will sit on. I was making the second to the last cut when it happened. I’m not really sure what happened. My optometrist is missing a few fingers from a table saw accident, so I have the greatest of respect for the tool. ALWAYS push the piece of board all the way through. And that’s what I did. When I asked him how it happened he says the same thing, “I’m really not sure”.

The board was resting on the edge of the saw and the out-feed table, but the end was still close to the blade. I looked down as I went to flip the switch to turn off the motor when the board suddenly hit me. My theory is that when I hit the switch, I jostled the saw enough to move the very light piece of wood. It caught on the blade and shot back at me.

The board hit me really hard. The wounds are really only superficial. They are nasty skin breaks, really. Fortunately I had moved to the side to flip the switch and the board really only grazed me. Had it been a direct hit in the stomach, given that board was so thin, I might be in the hospital right now, or maybe even bleeding out on the floor of the shop.

Despite the relative minor injuries, there was a shock to my system of the unexpected and violent force of the board. After a few seconds I got really light headed, my tongue went all tingly, and I was forced to lie on the ground before I passed out. After about 5 minutes I made it to the kitchen to wash the wound and I ended up on the floor again. I laid there for a good 10 minutes just trying to compose myself. I was amazed because I only lost a few drops of blood. It is really very minor.

The important thing is I finished the box. Although I did make the last cut with the jig saw.

Sunday, April 20, 2008

If The Truth Be Told

If the truth be told, I butchered the floor. I didn’t realize it yesterday, but I sanded it down too far with the second sanding. Its not the entire floor, but there are places where it is a little deep. Its not any real problem, but its not something I’m proud off.

At this point, I’m really ready for the whole laundry room to be over. It feels like I should have been done a few weeks ago, but it keeps dragging on.

I did get the face plates and escutcheons on today, and I got the light fixture hung. The added light in the room really helps. Having that one tiny bulb 10,5 feet off the ground made it difficult to work at times. I have some halogen work lights, but that was like working next to the sun in such a small space. I mostly used a hanging mechanics light for added light, which didn’t really work that well. If any one asks I’m going to blame the floor on poor visibility. I’ll say that between the low light and the thick clouds of sawdust I could barely see my hand in front of my face.

The last things to do are to make the box for the water heater, paint the door, and make and install the baseboards. What do you think, another month?

Saturday, April 19, 2008

Some Improvement is Still Improvement

So I sanded the floors in the laundry yet again today. I filled my house with sawdust yet again today. This would be a major pain if I had actually cleaned up all of the sawdust from last weekend. As it is, I knew I was going to be doing this again, so I never bothered to clean.

There is a visible trail leading from the kitchen, through the foyer, where it then forks, with one path going to the front door and the other going in to the parlor. I went and bought a box of swiffers today, so guess what I get to do tomorrow?

But enough of my poor, retched life. I can bore anybody with that any time I want. This is all about laundry room floors. Now, I realize this is just a laundry room floor. The fact that is just a laundry room floor is not really the point. This is an experiment to see how the rest of the floors will turn out. Many wise men and woman have said: As the laundry room goes, so goes the rest of the house. It was important that I make a real effort to get it right.

I’ll put the before and after…well, its not really a before…well, ok, its before today, so I’ll call it before…what ever, here it is…my first attempt, followed quickly by the second attempt.

As I said, its an improvement. The goal was to even out the color. You can see that black colored board in the bottom of the second picture. This is a replacement board, and this is part of what causes problems. That board is not in the first picture. I replaced another two boards in between my first and second attempts.

All of this wood is original to 1895. These are 1X6, T&G redwood floors. These replacement boards came from the kitchen, which had a bathroom cut in to it back in the 20s. Obviously, these boards suffered from water over the decades. This is what causes the discoloration. Someone suggested bleaching them, but I doubt I could get them to blend in seamlessly, so I didn’t bother. What I did was Sand The Hell Out Of Them. Sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn’t.

A lesson was learned: When I get to the dining room and start to replace a few boards, wood selection is paramount. I’m going to need to sand replacement boards before installation to make sure that don’t have the discoloration from water. I’m going to call this a success.

Friday, April 18, 2008

Little Bits

The other router bit I ordered came today, and, well, it’s a little under sized. I haven’t decided yet whether I should return it and keep looking or just say that this is as good as it gets.

I briefly toyed with the idea of a custom router bit, but from what I can tell the price is a little high for the limited amount of stock I need. One place started at $160 plus a drafting fee of $35 to $75 dollars. Another place did not list prices, but did say there was a 10 bit minimum. That is a lifetime supple for me.

Whether I keep this one or keep looking, I don’t see any custom router bits in my future. Hopefully I can get the floor done this weekend and then start on the baseboards.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Base Board Building

One of the router bits arrived today. I’ve ordered two of the 4 or 5 I’ll need to recreate the 1895 Victorian base boards in the house. The others are fairly common, so I can buy them locally.

Well, its not a perfect match. I didn’t think it would be, but a boy can dream. The vast majority of the base boards are intact, so I only need to fill in here and there. I can move some around to make sure I get prominent rooms with all original base boards. If you discount the new laundry room I am missing less than 10 feet of base board.

Monday, April 14, 2008

Do Over

Nope, its not going to do. I keep walking back in the room hoping the floor will look better and it doesn't. I didn't sand enough. I've got to take it down further to get the color more uniform. At least, that’s my theory. So it looks like another fun weekend with the rental sander.

In other news, I did get the cabinet completely assembled and hung. I went back to Stafford glass to get the a replacement for the piece I broke a few years back the last time I took it apart and painted. Stafford Glass is where I got the violet glass and the florentine glass for the bathroom, both salvage. This is probably one of the only commercial glass places that regularly stocks old wavy glass. And this isn’t reproduction stuff either. People bring them old window sash and Stafford glass harvest the old glass out of it. The best part is, they charge the same for the old stuff as they do for the new stuff. I picked it up on Thursday and me and the owner stood there admiring the “Flaws” in the glass just before I paid for it. The owners are retiring (It is literally a Mom & Pop operation) and Stafford Glass is going out of business in a year. They will be missed.

One thing odd about this cabinet is that the hinges only go on one way. If you put them on wrong there is either a gap on one side and they are too tight on the other, or the doors are crooked. This didn’t dawn on me when I put this thing back together 4 years ago. I got it all back together and there is a big gap on one side where the door meets the jamb. I thought, “That’s odd. I didn’t notice that gap before”, but I really didn’t think much more of it.

Then today when I put it back together I got all four hinges in the wrong place. The last time I had the two left ones on the right side and vice-versa. This time they were all mixed up so instead of a gap I had two crooked doors. That’s when the light went off. I’m glad I figured it out, but it was a real pain to take all of those hinges back off and move them around. The screws heads are getting a little warn after a 100 years and it is not easy to work them with the screw driver. So the next time I break a piece of glass I’m getting out the duct tape and calling it good. I’m not taking those hinges off again.

Sunday, April 13, 2008

All of the Swiffers in the World

I sanded and oiled the laundry room floor today. What a mess. The dust just permiates everything it had access to. It’s a small room so I did the whole thing with a rental edge sander. It took about three hours and it feels like I was doing crunches for three hours. Those things really give you a workout.

The only real problem was with the tinted shellac that was on part of the floor. You can see the area to the right in the photo above. That is tinted shellac and that is where the original butler’s pantry cabinets were. There was an area like this at either end of the room and it matched the witness mark in the paint on the beadboard on the walls. The rest of the floor most likely had linoleum on it. This tinted shellac is the same treatment done on the dining room floor. What I’ve never been able to figure out is, why they did it under the cabinets. It is very odd. If they knew there were going to be cabinets there, then when apply the treatment to the floor?

Anyway, the sander did not like the shellac. I knew it was going to be a problem, so yesterday I took most of it up with the heat gun. That wasn’t really enough and the shellac turned to a gummy paste quickly. A piece of 36-grit sandpaper lasted all of about 10 seconds before becoming completely gummed up with the shellac. After that it began to smoke.

So 5 minuets after I started I had to get some denatured alcohol and a wire brush and clean as much of the shellac off the floor as I could. In the end I didn’t get it all off, so I ended up going through a lot more sandpaper than I anticipated. In fact, I ran out. I could have used a lot more of the 36, 60 and 80 grit. The end results is, I didn’t sand as much as I would have liked to.

I just need to keep reminding myself, “Its only a laundry room”

So here’s what I ended up with. This just has BLO and turpentine on it at this point. It is still wet in this shot. It was nice to see that I had a piece of curly redwood on the floor. That will make for a nice conversation piece. I also missed a divot when I was making repairs the other day. It is not as big as the others, but still, it is too large to be called “character”. I’m going to need to deal with this. I'll be honest with you, I had hoped this would look better. I may be too soon to pass judgment, though, so I'll wait and see.

I also left the water heater in place. You see that skanky little piece of vent pipe at the very base of the pipe? That is a mistake, sort of. A few years ago I ran all new Type B vent pipe for the water heater. After nearly 30 feet of pipe I came up six inches short and had to get that little scrap piece out of the garage. I’m going to build a little box to raise the heater so I can get rid of the piece. This also means I don’t need to really worry about finishing the floor just under the water heater. When I put the baseboards in I’ll move it one last time, put the baseboards in, put the box in, and then reinstall the heater, and be able to get rid of that scrap of pipe.

Saturday, April 12, 2008

Plunging In To Flooring

I’m still waiting for router bits to make the baseboards so I started in on the flooring. This is really the way to go anyway. Getting the floor finished and then attaching the baseboard is much better than the other way around. This way I don’t have to worry about banging up the baseboards. I sometimes get impatient towards the end of a project and nothing shows progress like trim work.

This will be the first time I will attempt to refinish the old redwood floors. If they come out half as nice as Joel’s I’ll be happy. I started to go this way with the upstairs bathroom, but in the end I chickened out and painted them. Before I start any sanding though, I needed to replace a few boards.

At some point a pair of 6-foot high walls were added to the back of the butler’s pantry. The room is about 10-feet wide and these two walls came out from either side, about 3-feet in to the room to create a little entryway which opened to the back of the room. This series of rooms – dining room, butler’s pantry, and scullery – were Mrs. Petch’s apartment around 1915, when she used the house as a boarding house, and then became a studio apartment in the 1920s.

I know the walls were not original to the butler’s pantry because the finish floor extended under them. In all cases, when the walls were put up, they built the walls on top of the subfloor and then ran the finish floor to the walls. Since the finish floor extended under these walls, then they were a later addition.

The walls were removed at least as early as 1970 when the floors were covered with underlayment and fake wood 12X12 inch plastic tiles. Very attractive. When they removed them they didn’t do it too carefully. Since the walls were toe-nailed in to the finish floor, they left some nasty divots that needed to be dealt with. I needed to replace 3 boards.

I have some 1X6 T&G redwood flooring salvaged from the kitchen, but it is in really rough shape. I need to also make some repairs in the dining room, so the laundry room is a good place to test this. First, of course, I needed to get the old flooring out. Here’s how I do it.

I line up the long part of a framing square with a seam between two boards. I then use a plunge router with a straight bit to cut the flooring, by guiding the router along the front end of the framing square. This way I get a perfect 90 degree cut in the wood. The plunge router depth is set to 7/8-inch so I only cut the finish floor and not subfloor.

Here it is with the dado cut by the router. You can see the divot to the left of the cut. The next step is to take a sawsall and make two cuts in the center of the piece I want to remove. I pull out the center section first, and the remove the two sides, being very careful not to damage the tongue or the groove on the boards that will stay.

And there its out. One side was nailed through the tongue so I chiseled away at it until I exposed the nails. Once the nails are exposed I can pull them out with a prybar. Because the router bit is round, I clean up the ends of the cut with a sharp chisel.

After that I cut a new piece for the opening. I remove the bottom half of the groove on the board so I can get it in the hole. I then fit the tongue in the opposite grove and fit it in to place. I few finishing nails through pre-drilled holes, and no ones the wiser. With any luck that will look seamless once the floor is sanded down and refinished. If its not seamless, well, I can always go another route. As I said, this is a test run for the dining room.

Here are the other two I replaced. Tomorrow I sand and oil and then maybe start some type of top coat Monday or Tuesday. I was going to sand today, but I get to do my taxes today. Yea! I think maybe I’ll let Angry Pete do my taxes this year.

Gad Damned, Sons of Bitches. Those bastards won’t stop until they’ve bled me dry!

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Advanced Cabinet Hanging

Or, how to almost break your neck hanging a cabinet all by yourself that weighs a ton.

I painted the cabinet and I was eager to get it on the wall because it was laying in the middle of the room and really in the way. This cabinet weighs a freakin’ ton. It is only 3.5X3.5 feet square and a foot deep, but I had to replace the back and I used 7/8-inch thick T&G fir boards (think beadboard without the bead). They came out of the rental addition. The original back was 3/8-inch think T&G slats.

When you do a lot of things by yourself you need to be creative at times. I laid boards on the floor against the opposing wall. I then leaned boards against the hanging wall and braced them against the boards on the floor. Now all I had to do was get the cabinet up on the ladder 5-feet in to the air and rest it on the boards. Easier said than done.

Then, while I held it with one hand I could level it with the other. When it was level I could drill pilot holes and drive in the stainless steel screws. You can start to see that I ran out of hands in step two or three. To make it even more fun, because the room is so small I couldn’t put both leaning boards in place because one of them blocked my access to the ladder. So I had to get it on to one board and then grab the other board and maneuver it underneath the cabinet.

So I leaned one board against the wall and climbed up on the ladder with the cabinet. I then dropped the drill, of course, and climbed back down the ladder with the cabinet. This is the part where I almost broke my neck, or some other part of my body. As I shimmied down off the ladder something shifted – me, the ladder, or the cabinet, I’m not sure which - and all three of us almost ended up in a heap on the floor. It was one of those moments where in seconds your deodorant fails and you feel like you need to change your socks, and maybe even your underwear.

At the time my big concern was the cabinet. I would hate to see that thing in splinters on the floor. Not to mention what it would do to the floor and maybe even the walls. Eventually I got it up and it ain’t going anywhere. I was concerned that the fixed shelves might be too close together, but as you can see in the picture the laundry room essentials fit fine.

Tomorrow I will paint the doors and replace the one piece of broken glass. Maybe get them hung by Friday. The whole thing needs another coat of paint after that. Then, this weekend it’s on to the floors!

Tuesday, April 08, 2008

Like a Rat in a Maze

I was asked to fill out a blogging survey by some eggheads at the University of Kentucky. I think the “University” is located upstairs above a whore house or something. I told them, “Yea, give me damn thing. I’ll fill it out.” They’d probably send goons to my house to rough me up if I didn’t. You know how those University types are. I got a professor mad at me once during my short and unimpressive stint at college. The son of a bitch tried to run me down in the parking lot! So I know how to play ball we these guys.

The survey was 14 questions and who knows what the hell they are trying to find out. They might as well have asked me to bend over so they could probe me where God didn’t intend me to be probed. I like girls and I don’t want to have sex with my mother! All right, is that what you sick-os want from me?

Maybe I shouldn’t have drank so much before filling out the survey this evening. I get a little nervous about these sorts of things. Oh well, to hell with them! If I could standfp now I’dv asdf I wopsefbv xdfgb

Monday, April 07, 2008

Call Me Imelda

I bought my fifth router on Saturday. Its not that I’ve worn out 4 routers, and so I went out and bought my next one. No, I just bought another router. I now own 4 working routers. One I burned up, and it was such a piece of crap, so it wasn’t worth fixing.

The one I bought on Saturday is a fixed base router with a half inch collet. I have a half inch plunge router, but I don’t really like it. I bought that one when I first started buying routers and it too is a piece of crap. I bought it at Harbor Freight, and I swear it actually started falling apart on the drive home. The motor is fine, and it still works, but the knobs and guides are junk.

My first router was also a piece of crap. That came with the router table. I think I paid about $80 for the router and router table. This was a Craftsman combo set, on sale, and then an additional 10% off for something or other. I’m a sucker for the “something or other”. The table is OK and the router was never really OK, but it worked. The switch broke and the brushes were going. I also never liked the way you adjusted the height. I figured it would cost more to fix than I paid for it so I spent a day taking it apart and then threw it away.

After that I bought the Harbor Freight POS. I then bought another Craftsman plunge router. It is a nice router, but a plunge router is not an everyday tool, so I keep it mounted to the router table. Mounting a router to the table is not the easiest thing in the world. In fact, it’s a pain in the ass, so I really needed a second working router.

So I then bought another fixed base Craftsman router at a garage sale for $8.00. I love that router. It is really old and I just really like it. I can’t say why, but it is easy to adjust. It is easy to change bits. I like the weight and the balance. It’s a really nice tool.

Even though the $8.00 garage sale router is nice, it only has a quarter inch collet. I’ve decided I’m going to try and reproduce my Victorian baseboards, so I need a router with a half inch collet. So Saturday I went and bought my forth working router. I need four bits to reproduce the base boards in the house.

Above are the four bits I will need, and router bits aren’t cheap. The second one down is close, but not quite right. I’m still looking. All told, that is about $130 in router bits. If I can get the right bits though, I can make all of the baseboard I want for just the cost of the wood. If I went to mill they would charge $75 just to put the bits in the router.

I don't think the baseboards are going to be ready for the laundry room by this weekend.

Sunday, April 06, 2008

No Popping

I wonder if 100 years from now people will look back and read articles in design and home improvement magazines from this time and wonder what all of the popping was about. “We painted the trim white and it just popped!” Maybe they will think there was some curing agent in light colored paints that made a loud popping noise when the paint was dry.

I got lazy and painted the trim and walls the same color, so my laundry room doesn’t pop. It is a very quite and peaceful shade of blue. When I first opened the can and poured some in to the paint pale I thought I had made a big mistake. It seemed much more blue than I had imagined. Then, as I was painting in on the walls it seemed washed out against the white primer. At that point I was worried that it looked too light. Eventually it found a middle ground and I’ve very happy with it.

As you are walking towards the door and the light is on in the room it seems a pale blue. As you stand in the room though, it takes on its grayer characteristics. It is a nice balance. The room is only 9.5X5.5, so any more color may seem too much. At least for me anyway. The important thing is, its not green.

I was able to get a lot more done this weekend that I thought I would. As you can see, the ceiling is completely trimmed out. The whole room is painted, and I was able to get the door trimmed out, as well. I really like the way the ceiling came out, but if I could I would reduce the size of the brackets by 30% or so. The scale is a little off.

The plan now is to make the baseboard through out the week, along with getting them primed and painted with one coat. If I can do that then they will be ready to install this weekend. I can then remove the water heater once more, so I can finish the floors and install the baseboard. I also need to paint the little cabinet and get it hung on the wall.

After that, I can put on eschusions, install the light fixture, and then I need to deal with the door. I’m not sure if that door in the picture will be the door for this room. That is a 1920s door from the rental days. Both that door and the door jamb came from the bathroom that was partitioned in to the kitchen back in the 1920s. I’ll need to make a trip to the door room to see what I have available in that size.

Saturday, April 05, 2008

Murder of the Century

The details of the murder trial were considered so sexy and lurid that for a time, by presidential order, news accounts of the scandal were forbidden to be carried in the U.S. mail. These were The Thaw-White murder and trials of 1906-08.

It was the first "trial of the century" of the 20th century. Stanford White, the playboy architect whose firm designed Madison Square Garden, was shot and killed in public by jealous husband Harry Thaw, heir to a railroad fortune. His wife was the beautiful showgirl, Evelyn Nesbit.

Friday, April 04, 2008

Hinting at Something

So things are moving right along on the old laundry room. In fact, in some ways they’re moving more than they should. I got the room sanded, primed, and caulked, and tomorrow I paint. If all goes well, I should have the water heater hooked back up Sunday and maybe even get some trim on.

I went with SW’s Hinting Blue for the color. The name is very apt for the color. Sometimes you get color names that don’t seem to mean anything, like “Serano Mist”, or something like that. The Hinting Blue really is hinting blue. It is a pale gray with just a hint of blue in it. The more I look at it, the more I like it, but I haven’t really seen it in a large scale yet, so I may be singing a different tune come Sunday.

I have not decided on a trim color, but right now I’m leaning towards doing the whole room in Hinting Blue. I’m concerned, given the level of trim in there, that the room will look too formal with a high contrast between the trim and walls – or any contrast, for that matter. This is a small room and it is just a laundry room.

There is also something to be said about being historically correct. I’m not talking about period correct here, but historically correct. I have many dreams, but one of them would be to own a well cared for 1890s Victorian home that is virtually untouched except for regular maintenance from the day it was built. Part of this regular maintenance would be painting. Most likely, if a utility room like this had gone virtually untouched except for the occasional paint job, it would be painted all one color.

I know its an odd concept to even think about, but this is the way my brain works sometimes. Really, when you get right down to it, being historically accurate means taking in to consideration the entire life span of the house, not just the decade it was built in. I’m either being excessively neurotic here or I’m trying to justify a reason to not spend hours painting trim a different color than the walls. I’m not sure which it is, but I’m willing to bet it’s a little of both.

Anyway, we’ll all go nuts if we try and figure that one out. Instead, I’ll just move on to the bit about “things moving more than they should”. Think back to how this all started. I pulled down a 100 year old beadboard ceiling in a machine shop. I threw in the truck. Then stacked it in the garage. I scraped it. Pulled nails. Stacked it in the dinning room. I flipped through the stack dozens of times looking for “just the right piece”. I then nailed it all up and finally sanded it down. Then yesterday, when I was ever so gently painting it with primer, one of 3 knots in all of this wood popped out and fell back in to the wall.


Suddenly I have a 2-inch diameter hole in what is otherwise 4 monolithic walls of solid wood. Grrrrrr! It is not even it a good spot where I can hide it with something. It is like 7 feet up on a wall and off to one side. I need to fill it with something, though. This is not one of those things were only I will notice it. Its a freakin' hole in the wall! I have a few ideas percolating in the noggin, but nothing definite yet.

For now, I’m not going to worry about it because tomorrow I paint. I’ve been working towards this goal all week and nothing will steer me from my course. To goal is to be able to take a shower Monday morning and in order to do that I need to get the water heater hooked back up.

So tomorrow I paint!

Tuesday, April 01, 2008

Laundry Accouterment

I was able to get the whole room sanded down except for the area just behind and above the water heater. I also got some of the holes filled. As I’ve said, all of this beadboard came out of what was originally a machine shop for a turn of the century woolen mill. Later, it became many things, one of which was D & D Motors. At some point a sprinkler system was put in and it was suspended from the beadboard ceiling. This meant that there was the occasional screw hole.

Wait, what was the point of all of this….oh yeah, the holes. I got them filled.

Tomorrow I should be able to caulk any wide seams, wipe it all down, and maybe even start to put primer on. Our I might un-strap the water heater from the wall and wiggle it out a few inches and go ahead and sand behind it. Its funny that I’ve lived in many homes in California where the water heater was not properly secured (Earthquakes, remember) and it never bothered me. Now that I’ve strapped this one down so well, the thought of having it not strapped makes me nervous.

But the point of this blog entry was not holes, sprinkler systems, or even un-strapped water heaters. The point is the accoutrements that will go in the room. There are only two, so I needed filler. Hence the long, boring story of the holes and the water heater.

The charming little cabinet above came with the house. It was part of a 1920s rental kitchen, but I think it pre-dates the kitchen. As far as I know they weren’t big on cornices on 1920s rental kitchens. Not only that, but it doesn’t look anything like any of the other cabinets that were in the rental kitchens. This one was off by itself.

This cabinet was pretty much the first thing I ever fixed up in the house. At one time something - a towel rack maybe – had been mounted in the right, front corner. It looked like someone removed it with a claw hammer. No point in wasting those endless seconds it would have taken to get a screw driver and remove like a civilized person when a perfectly good claw hammer is sitting right there. Am I right?

I stripped it down, cleaned the paint off the hardware, and fixed the claw hammer divot. I put the whole thing the back together and then cracked one piece of glass at the very end. Sigh! It is still cracked, so I need to fix that.

I’ve found many good homes for it over the years, but none of them took. At one point, the sink and that cabinet were in my real kitchen. They were a part of the original design, but in the end they didn’t make the cut for one reason or another. A friend is supposed to be buying the sink, and the little cabinet will be mounted over the washer and dryer in the new laundry room. I think it has finally found a good home. I really like that little cabinet.

This is the light fixture that will be going in the laundry room. Perhaps a bit fancy for a laundry room, but this is a laundry room that will have brackets and crown molding at the ceiling. I don’t think it will be too out of place. Besides, I really have no place else for it. This came from my year long light fixture buying spree.

The light fixture buying spree was in the pre-blog days. I was flush with cash from a recent refinancing on the house. I sort of lost touch with reality for several months and went crazy with buying antique light fixtures. I bought so many that I ended up re-selling 4 or 5 of them, and I still have a few more than I need. If you think this one’s too fancy for a laundry room, wait till you see the one that is going in the butler’s pantry!

This was the only fixture I bought that had been rewired. It was also the most expensive, and the only one I bought in a local shop. I think I paid $350 for it and bought it in a now defunct antique store called Antique Charm down in Fortuna. I never would have bought it if I had not been partially insane at the time. Oh well, it too will soon have a nice home in the laundry room.