Thursday, December 6, 2012

Wet Paint

We are not DIYers. I wish we were. I thought be might become DIYers when we bought this old house. I had daydreams of the boys (we didn't know we were quickly to become pregnant with a girl, we bought a house with lead paint thinking it was finally safe since the kids were past the putting things in their mouths stage) would help us demo, rebuilt, paint, etc. Now Josie is five and we have no excuse not to include the kids and become DIYers, but we still aren't. Thus, we haven't really done a lot to the house. Sure we had the  outside steps fixed when they spontaneously caved in, we put up a fence, we had asbestos removed before we moved in, etc. It isn't just the lack of this old house know how that has kept me from doing anything big. I feel a crazy obligation and responsibility to the previous people who have living in this house and those who will come after me. I don't want to screw anything up. In the end, it is our house and just like the people who have lived in it before us, the people after will wonder why we put that hook there or curse us for not fixing something or adding something we shouldn't have added. We live here now and I'm ready (I think) to put our mark on it.
 Drywall on the ceiling and an electrical outlet now. We are going to install a ceiling fan. The ceilings are kind of high and our house gets very hot in the summer and stays cold in the winter. I'm hoping ceiling fans will help.
 We put some insulation up before the drywall in order to keep noise down. Dema and Josie share the master bedroom which is right above our living room and we were told we'd miss the sound dampening of the plaster. So far, the drywall has been fine and we don't notice more noise, but we aren't using the living room yet.
 The walls were surprisingly good. Not many cracks at all. The worst part was over the fireplace, but Eric did his magic and it should look smooth.
 We love old windows and don't want to replace them, but we also like windows to open. We replaced the old broken rope with new rope and kept the weights.
 This is the type of thing that made me super sad to paint and almost had me ordering wallpaper. There is history written on the walls.
 If the walls tell the whole story. There has only been three layers of wallpaper in over 100 years!! The last installed when I was a toddler in 1973.
 It looked like a hazmat area when Eric was demo-ing the plaster and later sanding the walls. We had this mask for him that Rob bought when he was working on the basement. Eric kept the area amazingly clean and was all organized with bags of plaster. He went out and in the windows during the really messy part.
 Eric is meticulous and I love to see him making sure everything on the ceiling was level.
 1925 was the second layer of wallpaper (assuming wallpaper was what they covered the walls with when it was first built) and some plaster touch ups. 
 I am sad all these notes are gone as Eric sanded, primed, etc.
 I let go of the old and embraced a new. Yes, we chose green for the ceiling. Bold choice for both of us and I hope previous owners are not rolling over in their graves, but this is where we are now.
 We decided not to strip the molding around the ceiling and paint it another color so Eric didn't have to be too particular at the corners, but it looks good to me.
 The stripping of the woodwork around the fireplace has proven to be a messy affair and time-consuming, but I love getting back to the wood.
 It looked like many layers of paint on the woodwork.
 The walls are more neutral. We really wanted to use limestone paint from Unearthed Paint, but we were running short on time and funds. I really want to use their paints in the rest of the house. We ended up with Sherman Williams Emerald paint instead. It seems to cover well and so far we are pleased, but I don't love it like I know I'll love the Unearthed. The colors we picked remind me of the Common Ground Co-op. I didn't think of it when we picked them, but I took Josie shopping there this week and it hit me that we now have a living room that is like the co-op. I'm cool with that.
 I can't wait to see how the colors look with the green around the fireplace and I am eager to pick out window treatments and floor covering to bring it all together.
 If we were more organized, we would have done this project in the spring so we could sandblast the radiator and repaint it, but that will have to wait.
We were originally thinking red for the living room to bring color to our lives, but I think this color scheme is more relaxing. I know we'll enjoy many parties, countless games with the kids, endless hours of cuddling and reading in our new living room. Maybe we'll try to tackle one of the other rooms on our own.


the sandwich life said...

love it, love it, LOVE it!!!!

abby said...

Oh, I love it- it is a nice peaceful vibe. Can't wait to see it all pulled together.

We are diy-ers here. It is much easier now that the kids are older- Sam is always interested and has picked up an impressive amount of skills, and Joe is at least safe around it all, and occasionally interested. But it does often take a backseat to real life- it's too easy to get consumed with the next project otherwise (at least for us). I guess it's the balance issue that pervades all of life-

Good luck with your room!

VeganLinda said...

Thanks Cynthia and Abby!

KBH said...

those colors make me want to do yoga, so I think it is perfect for your house! looks great. I hope to one day see it in person.