Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Over DIY-er

There is the concept of doing something yourself, coined by the phrase "Do It Yourself" (DIY), and then there is a whole other level of I like I to call ODIY - Over-Doing It Yourself.

I fall into this last category.

What initially started as a simple idea to tile atop approximately 100 sq ft of ugly, old flower-pattern linoleum in our new house turned into a total main level flooring renovation project. And why not paint the walls prior to installing new flooring, right? We have most definitely gotten ourselves into too many DIY projects!

We are about a week behind schedule and for that reason, we are revising our pre-move-in to-do list. If we can finish the flooring before we move in at the end of the month, it will be a small miracle =)  The fence repair will have to wait until after we move in.

Now that I've rambled on about getting ourselves in-over-our-heads with these projects, here is what Jon and I have accomplished so far!

1st) Painting
         We bought a paint sprayer from Amazon thinking this was the way to go for a quick and easy wall and baseboard painting project. BAD IDEA. This was the most wasted purchase. If you are thinking of using a paint sprayer, I highly encourage you to either buy a really nice, expensive one that is made for thick (high viscosity) paint, or forego the purchase and stick to foam rollers. This is the one we bought and it was a nightmare to use:

It isn't that the  product was all that bad, it's that we are beginner painters and we should have never attempted to use a paint sprayer in the first place. I had bought really nice, thick paint (Valspar Ultra) but in order to use the paint sprayer correctly, the paint has to have low viscosity (the paint sprayer comes with a test tool to determine this).   Unfortunately, our paint was too thick, so we had to water it down by almost 50%, which meant the paint was thin, required a lot of coats, the coats were uneven, and it took forever to dry and dripped everywhere.

After 1 day of trying to master usage of the paint sprayer, I called it quits and bought a bunch of foam rollers and paintbrushes at Lowe's.

I also underestimated the time it would take to prep and tape everything, so what I had planned would take us 3 days, actually took us about 7 days (a couple hours each day). I also painted the downstairs doors in a soft white, which also took up extra time. In the end, all the painting has been worth it. It just took a lot of work getting to this point, and we still have the upstairs to do!

Here are some picture of before and after we painted

Wall behind fireplace


Wall near staircase





(all those long pieces of white painted boards on the floor amidst the messy house)


(You also get a glimpse of the floral-print linoleum in this picture, luck you!)


Another after, just for good-measure. This is a view of the front door. The trim also had to be painted white.

All About The Painting Process

I chose Valspar's Tempered Gray for the walls and Cafe Bistro for the baseboards and doors. I was reluctant to chose gray for the walls, and almost went with a creamy-tan color instead, but I'm glad I stepped out of my color-comfort zone and tried something new. The one thing Jon and I can really agree on is that the paint color was an excellent choice. We love how the walls look - the Tempered Gray is a really soft gray with lots of color tones in and pairs really well against the creamy white baseboards and doors. Definitely a winner of a color!

For now, the painting is finally done!! (We haven't even touched the upstairs or finished the kitchen, but those can wait until after we move in). I wanted to paint any walls that are directly above where the new flooring will be, so that I wouldn't have to worry about paint dripping on our brand new floors. Together, Jon and I were able to accomplish this, but we still have the upstairs painting to tackle after we move in!

2nd)  Flooring

This is the current project we are working on, and have to finish by move-in day. The entire downstairs is being redone in Harmonic's Vineyard Cherry flooring, which I talked about in detail in an earlier blog post. We also plan to use the same flooring for our two upstairs bathrooms, but that project will have to wait for another time.

There aren't any before and after pictures yet, since we haven't really completed anything with the flooring except for ripping out all the old laminate. Here are some pictures of the progress:

Jon using a prybar to rip up the old laminate

Got one whole section ripped up, Right under the blue tarp is our concrete foundation. Yep, we stripped that flooring down to the bare bones. I even took a black Sharpie and wrote our initials and year and John 3:16 on the concrete foundation of our house. Kind of strange to be able to do that, but awesome!

Moisture barrier laid down, new flooring boxes open and ready for the first section of installation.
The first small section of flooring is down! We just simply followed the instructions provided by Harmonics for the click-flooring and didn't run into any problems. It takes time to cut the boards, but the actual assembly of the flooring is pretty easy.

Here is a section of the new flooring up against the baseboard-less freshly painted Tempered Gray walls.

After getting ahead of ourselves and installing a small section of flooring to see how it would look (see flooring on left by the stairs) we finished ripping out all the old flooring and ruined moisture barrier.

Now that the flooring is all up and we know what we are doing (well, kind of!) the rest of the flooring installation should go more smoothly (let's hope!). The next post will be the hardwood flooring reveal, woo hoo!

Our goal for the next 1 1/2 weeks is to finish all the flooring and re-install the freshly painted baseboards. Wish us luck!

Happy Wednesday!,


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