Before and Afters Triangle House

Moved in and workin’ hard!

So we’re finally living comfortably in our fixer upper! We’re pretty relieved and happy, but there’s still a slew of projects to be completed. We’ve given ourselves a punch list of renovations to do and we’re gettin’ r done! It gets a little hectic sometimes with juggling the kids, cooking in our almost finished kitchen, making sure the house stays clean of construction dust and mess as much as possible and still living out of boxes. Sometimes I’d like to pull my hair out but in the great words of Red (Morgan Freedman in Shawshank Redemption, my favorite movie) “Pressure and time…that’s all it takes really…pressure and time”.

We’ve been getting the girls involved in the renovating process as this is also their house. The allowance thing is out. I will not pay you to clean up your own house. It’s a family affair! The girls helped me prep and paint the cedar half wall in the great room. Painting the wood will brighten up the area a bit more as I love bright homes! I started with cleaning the wood from any dirt and dust with warm water and some TSP cleaning solution with a microfiber cloth.

Then I had the littlest one help with sanding. Sure, she didn’t make much of a bent but it’s the learning that matters. She had fun doing it too..looking like a lunch lady! I used the electric sander and a sanding block to get into the crevices. 150 grit was good enough to get it scratched up a bit for paint. After sanding, Ina helped me with priming the wood. We taped then primed all of the places that cannot be rolled and put an extra bit on all of the knots. Then we went back and rolled on the primer, twice for extra security. I first decided to paint the walls the same color as the other walls, a light grey. Yet, after seeing the grey rolled on, we all decided that white would look better on the planked wall. So I went back and repainted the wall white. So that’s two coats primer, one coat grey, two coats white. It looks really nice…thanks girls!

Go lunch lady go!
Karate kid method

Next project, Yuri installed a new wood french door between the mudroom and kitchen. The old one was ok, but was a bit old and worn. The french door was a gift, which was awesome, but it needed to be customized a bit because of the opening size. Yuri cut the 36″ door down to the 35″ opening that it had to fit into. Painting a french door is TORTURE and my crazy butt has to have them all around the house because I love them so. Ina helped me clean and sand it front and back.

Lunch lady #2
Windexed and ready to scrape. Zolie waiting.

Now I was gonna go through the painful task of taping all around each window but I read that windex and a good razor can get paint off glass. I cross my fingers and began priming the wood and parts of the glass. Two coats of primer and two coats of paint later, I was ready for the removal. After spraying on the windex two windows at a time and letting it soak in for a minute, I took the razor and removed the paint with ease! YAY! Thank goodness it worked. Don’t get me wrong, it still took time but I like this method better than taping. Yuri trimmed both sides with 1x’s and with two coats of paint, this door is done my friends!



Doggie ghost

Yet another french door was installed in Yuri’s future music room. We got another deal on a new Therma Tru double exterior french door from a resale windows and doors shop in Felton, Delaware. This door easily could go for $1k but we got it for $200….SCORE! Yuri torn out the old rotted smelly door and changed a couple pieces of bad wood. He ran into a resident hiding in the rotted wood…a little garden snake. Maybe he was looking for the mouse we caught a while ago. Yuri had to heightened the opening by 3 inches to fit the new door and then popped in the new one with pvc trim to go around. It looks fabulous darling! Helps with the crippled curb appeal we got going on.



Double door score!

In between painting, caulking, drilling and hammering, I have a few furniture projects happening. In a previous blog I showed you our velvet pink sofa that we were getting reupholstered. Well, she’s done! Our Upholsterer did a great job on the transformation. He did everything that I requested and now we pretty much have a brand new sofa. Take a look…



He’s AWESOME! I’m contemplating on changing the legs to a lighter wood and a little slimmer. Now I’m working on two mid-century wood chairs I got off Craigslist. Currently they are getting sanded down to the bare wood. There’s loads of old poly on the spindles and body that chips off semi-easily and not to mention I think the guy I bought them from had these outside or somewhere where moisture got to them. I’ve been using our electric sander and hand sanding. 80 and 100 grit are the best for removing all the poly and nasty top wood. The dry rotted fabric strips for the seat have been cut off and will be replaced with new straps. Hopefully I’ll be able to install the new straps as my sewing skills are at the beginners level.

Half spindles sanded
Thick coat of poly cracking off
Old fabric base
BEFORE sanding on left…AFTER sanding on right. Ready for oil.

I think after sanding, instead of using poly again, I’m gonna go with Waterlox. Waterlox is a mixture of Tung oil and epoxy. It’s a bit pricey but it is noted as one of the top products to use for wood protection. Aaand of course I’ll get my upholstery guy to whip up two seating pillows for each chair so it’ll look something like this…


Finale pics to come on the mid century makeover!


This baby is the next thing we are tackling in the kitchen…

Temporary curving butcher block.

A new butcherblock waterfall countertop is in the works. This butcherblock was a temporary fix for the plumber to pass inspection.

Stay tuned for a custom countertop remodel!

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