Sunday, December 18, 2011

Guest bath started

Having picked up all the tile supplies for the guest bath last night today I dug into the install. As usual the first row is the hardest and then it goes a little faster. Hopefully I'll be able to knock out some more this week before the holidays get here. We're hoping to have this bathroom ready for us to use by next month. Our 1950's bathroom we're currently using has long passed its retirement age so it'll be nice to have a modern bathroom again. We're using simple 6x8 white subway tile and we're going to add a dark marble in two accent strips along the wall to match the countertops (that we haven't picked out, but hopefully will be something dark). The cabinets are a lighter wood as is the flooring so it should all look nice together. We are way under budget on the materials for this bathroom which is good because our master bathroom is probably going to be more expensive than we had originally planned.

Our drywall guys installed the Durock in the bathrooms so it's an easier install for us. All I needed to do was tape the joints with mold resistant fiber mesh tape and thinset over everything. The floor needs another layer of self leveling compound as the first coat wasn't quite perfectly level. I ordered another brand this time that has a higher working time - 20-25 minutes - compared to the 5-10 minutes of the stuff we used before. It should flow a little better and level itself out better.

We were lazy so we set up a Dexter-like kill room for the wet saw upstairs. This way we don't have to walk down 2 sets of stairs and cut tile in the freezing cold!

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Next project

Not too much got done today besides some shopping. We finally settled on the tile for the guest bath. Hopefully I will get started on it tomorrow.

Friday, December 16, 2011

Head start to the weekend

I had a half day to work on the house so I knocked out some more of the master bedroom hardwood floor that I started last weekend. Once you get going nailing down the planks goes pretty fast. The first row takes and hour or so to get it perfect then you just keep the boards tight and nail them down. The bamboo looks great against the dark paint. There's still white trim and baseboard that needs to get installed so that should lighten up the walls a little bit too.

Not sure what all we'll tackle this weekend, but we still need to pick out tiles for the bathroom so we can get those done and move upstairs in the next month or so. With the holidays coming up we should have some extra time to make some progress on the upstairs. We both want to unwrap the tub and get it installed!

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Nothing too exciting

Another weekend passed. Both of us had to work yesterday so not a lot got done. I painted all the closets and the upstairs hallway today. Hopefully next weekend we can start the flooring upstairs and start making some progress. Other than that not too much went on. We did finally dig out the fireplace just in time for some nice fires on these cold nights.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Prep work

There was a lot of busy work and prep work this weekend. I finished some of the electrical in the master bedroom. We are pushing to finish the bedroom and bathroom so we can move upstairs. The bathroom floors were uneven and we learned the hard way what happens when you lay tile on an uneven floor. Self leveling compound does a great job and is relatively easy to do. Just mix with water and pour on the floor. You only have a few minutes of working time so you do have to work fast. Now the floors are level and we should be ready for tile.... If we ever pick any out that is.

Here's a couple pictures of our marble slab we picked out. Can't wait to get this installed!

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Starting the second floor

We started work over the weekend on the master bedroom.  As you might notice, the master bedroom currently houses things like our chop saw and bathtub (hiding from potential damage under the big white box) so it doesn't look very masterful or much like a bedroom at the moment but at least it is now painted.  My blackberry camera seems to be casting the walls in a purplish color but they are actually a dark grey.  We went with a dark color because the bedroom gets so much light and will have a great deal of white trim once we add baseboards, crown moulding, and window trim (someday).  Next up will be clearing out the room and laying the floor - and then we can start to move some of our stuff out of the living room and upstairs to a bedroom!

Monday, November 14, 2011

Another day closer

I had the day off so I installed our cabinets pulls. Stuff like this is tedious but it does makes it a lot easier to use our cabinets since they are full overlays and there's not much room to grab the doors. We went with IKEA lansa pulls since they're relatively inexpensive and they go well with the cabinets and appliances. The back of the island got a simple IKEA strecket pull so they are not a noticeable, but still useful.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

More kitchen work

We cleaned up the kitchen a bit and started getting more organized today. It's starting to feel like a usable space again. There are now temporary counters until we get our new ones. We ended up deciding to go with Carrera marble and hopefully we will have them installed in a couple weeks. The dining space got a new light fixture as well as one of our Flor rugs we had laying around. The microwave got moved to the pantry so I had to run a new circuit in there for it. A lot of small details were finished today even if it doesn't look like much.

Friday, November 11, 2011

Kitchen details

I took the day off to finish a few things in the kitchen. The island needed some trim pieces on the side and we needed to install the electrical before the countertops get installed. We now have a ton of outlets to choose from. There are two 36 inch strips under the cabinets and an outlet on each end of the island. Everything blends in nicely. Hopefully tomorrow we will have the countertops picked out and ordered. I also have a new iPhone so the photos will be much better from now on. It's still a little messy but we are getting closer to the finished kitchen.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Cabinets installed

The last two cabinets took us a few extra hours of planning, but they are now installed. Both the fridge cabinet and pantry required exact filler strips and left zero room for error. To help us out we bought a new toy yesterday in the form of a Rigid table saw. Just what we needed! The kitchen turned out better than we had in our heads and the countertops aren't even in yet. The design is very open and working in it is great. Everything is within a step or two. The only problem is when the sun is out it's almost too bright. Not a bad problem to have, but we may need to find some shades for the french doors. Next up we need to put up the crown molding, cabinet pulls, backsplash, molding around the rest of the room, and a few lights and we'll have the first finished room in the house!

Friday, November 4, 2011

No more paper plates

Another milestone was passed this week. We finally have a sink with running water in the kitchen! There's not much countertop space, but we do have a working disposal and dishwasher now. No need to use paper plates and plastic utensils any more. I hooked up all the water lines and the drains the other day. The faucet is from the old kitchen so it will suffice until we get our new one. Last night the vent hood was sealed up as well. We also started unpacking all the old cabinets and various boxes in the basement where our kitchen stuff is stashed. This weekend we'll finish off the pantry and fridge cabinets to complete the kitchen. Plus we're getting rid of our old kitchen by selling it on Craigslist. Should open up some living space around here and start feeling like a home again.

Monday, October 31, 2011

Building the island

After work today I finished building the kitchen island. First I had to build a frame to jack up the 30in wall cabinets to match the 34.5in base cabinets. Then some clamping, shims, and screws later there is now an island waiting for a slab of stone.

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Almost there...

The kitchen is coming together nicely. We started the island and finished one half of it. There are three wall cabinets (1 foot rather than 2 foot) going opposite this row to make the island a total of 8.5 feet by 3 feet. A lot of measuring and leveling today so it made for some tedious work, but the results are great. We're at that stage in the renovations where most of the work we do is the finished product everyone will see. It makes for some good blog updates. All we need is a better camera as my Blackberry is taking awful pictures lately. I'll finish the cabinets this week and we'll be ready for countertops next week.
It's hard to believe that just a few days ago these cabinets were in flat boxes waiting to get assembled. We can't wait to get our kitchen back!

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Kitchen taking shape

I finished putting together all the kitchen cabinets today. It was definitely more time consuming than I realized, but worth the cost savings. They aren't as easy to put together as IKEA stuff that's for sure, but they are way more solid. The cabinets are J&K in an espresso finish. All of them are solid hardwood so they should last a long time. We came way under budget on the cabinets (over half). Even with the splurge in appliances we are well under the budget we initially had allotted for the kitchen. We have the countertops narrowed down to a couple choices so the kitchen should be usable in a week or two.
First two cabinets are on the wall. Tomorrow we should have the other wall cabinet set and the island built. There's a big pantry at one end so that may require some help to hold everything together while it's built in place, but everything is progressing nicely.