Monday, August 19, 2013

Before and Afters Part 1

So I've finished the renovation and rented the place out. I've rested. Now it's time for everyone's favorite, Before and After.  I might fill in with another post about more progress, but this is what we're all here for, let's not kid ourselves.

Let's start with the Sunroom. 

In here, we had bubbling trim paint, no window coverings, one of those ugly square tray light fixtures, and overall sadness.

So I'm not sure why the bamboo roman shades look see-thru? They're not, I promise. What you can't see is that I painted a gold boob light (from my bedroom) black and installed it in here.  Still not my favorite light fixture, but it looks 1,000 times better, and it was free.

Living Room & Dining Room 

The gold fireplace, dingy ceiling tiles, and dirt (?) (hopefully?) smears on the walls were doing these rooms no favors. (So ok, my 2 second photoshop isn't helping either).  The crown molding had large gaps at the ceiling interface that made it seem like it was about to fall down. Fortunately, caulk has been invented, and was used in Costco-sized amounts.

While I did not get around to painting the ceiling fans, once everything else was done, the gold was not so offensive. Or maybe I was just tired. Meh. They did get new matching pull chains, because the mis-matched ones were giving me a panic attack.  That one little thing made a huge difference, at least to me.  Painting the ceiling tiles to make sure all the cracks were filled in was a pain in the arse, but now you really don't notice that they are tiled all that much. Thank god.  
New view into living room from the dining room

The white trim in the dining room really pops now with the light green on the walls. Due to the settling of the house, not one edge of this was flush against the walls. Mom to the rescue, she caulked every seam for me. It was an incredible improvement just after that alone.

Is that a SHOE LACE?! as a ceiling fan pull chain? Of course!

Drum Roll Please....


For an extremely tight budget, about $300, I think the kitchen turned out pretty well. It was a horror show when I got my hands on it though, so being engulfed in flames would have actually been a step up. Filthy everything, a stained dropped ceiling, a ceiling fan?!, surface mounted electrical, upper cabinets crowding the windows, layers of vinyl flooring, and a leaking faucet. Gag.

Things that happened: The drop ceiling was torn down, and I put up new gyp board over the cracked and peeling plaster, regaining 6 inches of height. The light blocking upper cabinets were taken down and relocated to the back wall. The window wall got beadboard, new electrical, and a new black industrial/schoolhouse light fixture, adding much needed light over the sink. The ceiling fan was literally kicked to the curb and replaced with another black painted boob light. I installed a new Hansgrohe faucet that pulls out. It's about a million pounds, all brass, and very tenant proof. All the cabinets were scrubbed and painted Martha Stewart "Mushroom" in semi-gloss. Inside, I covered the bottom of the cabinets with peel and stick vinyl tiles, covering old water stains and making it much easier to clean. I used that new Rustoleum countertop paint to go over the blue laminate. It is now a glossy black, along with the hardware. The previously sad metal cabinet was painted to match the wood cabinets. It was only 18" deep, so I glued a 2x2 piece of birch plywood on top to give more depth to the counter. I stained the top with some random mixture of dark oil stains that I had, painted the edges black, and buffed the top with linseed and beeswax finish to make it waterproof.  Lastly, all the flooring was torn up, excepting the pantry, and the wood was refinished in here as well.
Remember this guy? He got a little facelift.

Someday there will be a new range and vented hood here.


Ironing board cabinet with doors removed. The plan had me putting shelves in here. Alas, I ran out of time.

Well that was lot. Let's save the other half of the house for the next post or else this is going to be the War and Peace of Before and Afters...

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