After rambling on considerably about fixing the backyard deck, I have one final thing to add. For purely cosmetic reasons, I replaced the lattice that runs around the base of the deck. Lattice is there for two reasons: 1. Practical: To keep critters from making their home under the deck, wherefrom they can cause damage to the house, deck, or… Read More »A DIY Quickie.
The deck, essential of a relaxed summer life. Although there’s no obvious architectural era for this elevation of outdoor enjoyment, the current North American passion for decks is likely related to the ‘backyard culture’ that developed with the rise of the suburban housing developments after the second world war.1 In Canada, there may also be a tie to ‘cottage culture’ –… Read More »What to do with an old deck?
Why? To match the style of the Arts&Craft house, in design and quality. Yes, doors are available at the DIY stores. But, the quality of these products isn’t a good match for the era: Doors made from solid wood are more adaptable, and feel more solid. I’ve been watching for a couple years, at resellers like the ReStore, which is… Read More »Building Doors.
Most of the planning and deciding done (see Part 1 and 2), it’s time to do the project. Got the plumber to take up the fixtures, a necessity for replacing the floor and a delight for painting and replacing the trim. I’ve accepted that three coats of paint are necessary, one primer and two top coats. Ditto on the trim… Read More »Powder Room Reno. Part 3: Putting it all together.
As I continue to redo the powder room in my Arts&Craft era house, I’m correcting a few DI-Don’ts: 1. Aside from picture rail being more of a thing for the era of the house (Part 1), there was crown molding installed in this room in an unusual way. Granted, this was a challenging room for trim, as within the small… Read More »Powder Room Reno. Part 2: Crown molding and Weird Angles.
To redo the main floor powder room, I’m working towards a sympathetic style to the era (1920’s Arts & Craft, with a bit of borrowing from Art Deco, because it’s so cool). The changes are mostly decorative but the project includes improving the quality of the finishes. Since the house didn’t originally have a main floor powder room, I got… Read More »Powder Room Reno. Part 1: Adding Picture rails.
Wisdom of old was to keep the dregs of paint from each fresh coat applied to rooms in your house. This allowed touch ups – dabbing a bit here and a line there when accidents dented or chipped the finish, or a bit of decoration was moved. As long as the same paint was used, the result would be invisible.… Read More »What is up with flashing paint?
Next stage in the replacement of the window casings. Done all the painted ones, and a couple of stained ones. Moving to the main floor. Should be routine because I’ve done all the steps before. No problems. Well, there were a few breezy steps. A few new snags. It’s an old house, and there are always surprises. 1. Go to… Read More »More Trim. These ones should be easy, right?
The spirit of the Arts and Crafts movement – the style of my current reno project – is high quality craft in building and finishing. Perhaps that is why I find the poor quality of many of the ‘improvements’ done in my house so frustrating. But frustrating in a good way, because when I fix them, I feel I’ve done… Read More »Details. Craft details.
I’ve written about the extra challenge replacing painted window and door casings1 with stained wood. The miracle of caulking is a perfect finish, covering up minor variances in carpentry on painted wood. Working with stained wood doesn’t have this luxury. Every minor error shows like a gapping chasm into the hell of imperfect execution. Stained casings were hard. Baseboards even harder.… Read More »Baseboards, like 100 Years Ago.