At the beginning of April we filled you in on our plans to disguise the new HVAC intake under our beautiful main staircase.
If you were reading you may have missed this post since it was below our April Fool's post and you had already closed your browser in disgust of yet another website doing yet another April Fool's post. I mean, it was pretty funny in 2007, right? Ultimately, we shared our progress to date and some discussion of our plans.
To quickly recap, when we bought our "new" old house in the country, one of the things we loved the most is the staircase. The downstairs hallway is much wider than we're used to seeing in houses in Old Town, and Wendy especially loved the staircase, perfect for draping lush garlands at Christmastime.
The staircase even had an interesting alcove beneath it where a hall table, lamp, and fun accessories could find a home.
"Just because something doesn't look quite the way you want doesn't mean you have to live with it."
This should be a DIY mantra of some sort, perhaps tattooed across a self respecting handy person's calf or shoulder blade. I can see it now, there's no way I would regret a tattoo as legit as that in a prominent location on my body.
Several months ago we shared our lucky find of an outdoor dining table that we stumbled on at Lucketts Antiques. This beauty was hidden under several other items stacked up on the store's porch. So when we pulled the trigger on the purchase, we were aware that there had been a fair amount of damage to the table's surface from its time on the porch.
The finish on the table top was a simple stain topped with an oil based poly. The poly was applied pretty thick, but was pretty heavily scratched in a few areas, there were several large sections where the first coat of poly had peeled up and a top coat was applied to cover the missing section, as well as a few places that had missing poly altogether. It looked good from a distance, but up close it had obviously see better days...and not in a cool character building way.
The title of "DIYer" is a hobby for some, and a true way of life for others.
Whether you see it as sweat equity, a logic challenge, the way to make something with your own two hands, or the ultimate way to control the outcome of what you're working on to be just.the.way.you.want.it, when you're predisposed to DIY it seeps into your soul and can become a true part of your identity.
Some people might call it "obsessed," but I like to think of it as "dedication to one's craft." But no matter what we call it, there are common things all of us DIYers can sometimes relate to. So in the vein of the "You might be a DIYer if..." style jokes (and mostly because we're in the middle of several projects that aren't quite ready to share), I've put together a list of things I think quite a few DIYers can relate to.
1.You have half finished projects in various places throughout your place and you're an expert at explaining to your guests what it will eventually look like.
"When this is done it will be a floor to ceiling set of cabinets with vintage hardware and all painted white!" while looking at the pile of wood sitting on the floor.
We need your help identifying where we can find some antique architectural details!
That's right, I've searched high and low for these buggers and can't come up with a viable source thus far. "What am I looking for?" You might ask. Antique brass nail backed numbers for hotel room doors, of course! Let me fill you in.
One of the most important aspects in the restoration of an old home is the unending search for *just* the right components. You know the saying "God is in the detail" or "anything worth doing is worth doing right"? Well, I live by these sayings...often to a fault!
Whether we're spending seven years collecting nine very specific and matching antique salvaged rim locks to give our house a period look...
...or six years searching for five antique doors that match the profile and panels of our home's original doors perfectly so we might be able to add an appropriate looking wall of closets to our master bedroom...
Traditional plasterers achieve perfectly flat and smooth walls with nothing more than a trowel...no sanding required.
Yes, you heard me, no sanding at all!
For years I've used what was readily available to achieve the "plaster" look. At this point I've probably applied close to 300 gallons of joint compound to give our walls the authentically vintage look of plaster. I've also discussed this somewhat labor intensive and messy method at length, which included the many MANY references to sanding it all smooth until my arms could sand no more.
Over the years I adopted techniques to ease the process, tools to reduce the mess, dust collection methods to keep the drywall dust from venturing into each and every nook and cranny in the house. But no matter how good I got, it was always the same: apply, sand, apply, sand, apply, sand, repeat until you cry out to the wall "I have a bad mustache and I just can't take this any longer!"
Your situation may be different than mine, but you get the idea.