Welcome to week two of the Spring One Room Challenge! I feel like this past week has been an exercise in starting a lot of things, but not finishing any of them.
That’s not quite fair – we did finish three things:
- Chris finished the last few spots of drywall that needed a bit more mud/sanding
- All the new drywall was sealed with primer
- The ceiling got two coats of paint (for which my back has not forgiven me yet)
Our biggest not-quite-finished accomplishment of the week? Our new solid hardwood floors!
Aren’t they pretty? I’m seriously swooning. They are a solid maple hardwood floor with a medium grey/brown tone. My favourite part – the matte finish!
So…installation – full disclosure: we had never installed nail down hardwood before so this was all new to us (and terrifying because it’s the most expensive project we’ve ever decided to DIY). On the advice of some contractor friends, we started by installing the longest stretch first – from our front hall all the way to the back door. To make sure it was completely straight we created a chalk line and then installed the first two rows by hand; pre-drilling through the tongue and then hammering in finishing nails.
We then carefully worked our way across the kitchen/dining room areas and eventually got into a nice groove – alternating between nailing and laying out the next row. We kept going until we were so close to the cabinets/wall we could no longer swing the mallet. The remaining boards will be installed later by hand.
I think the worst part of installing the floors ourselves is the amount of time it takes. We rented the nailer at first thing Sunday morning and worked pretty much straight through to 2 am Monday. Counting up the empty boxes it was about 300 sq ft in 16 hours.
But for the most part the installation was fun (I really liked the floor nailer) and I would say we both enjoyed ourselves. Don’t get me wrong, it was painful (the next day my back ached and I felt like I had done 1,000 squats) but that was our own fault for being cheap and trying to do as much as possible in our 24 hour tool rental period. Bottom line: Installing flooring is definitely something I would do again rather than pay someone else to do – which is good, because we still have more to do!
This upcoming Sunday (aka the next day Chris and I both have off) we will rent the floor nailer again and install the rest of the floor working from that original first row but in the opposite direction into our living room. I think we have about 200 sq ft left to go so…another late night for us.
So…what else did we start, but not finish?
We picked up our new baseboards from our sponsor Metrie and gave them one coat of paint (yay!) BUT the second coat is waiting until we’re a little closer to installation (no spoilers, you’ll have to wait until next week to see those!).
We started reinstalling our upper cabinets (yay!) BUT I still need to build/hack together a new narrow cabinet to fit in the space left by our old corner cabinet.
Finally, I got one coat of paint on most of the walls (yay!) BUT we need to move some furniture around before I can get at the remaining walls – and then everything will need a second coat.
So to recap, nothing is really finished BUT we got a ridiculous amount done – and I’m incredibly happy with our progress. Things are definitely still chaotic (and dusty) but I think the space starting to come together.
Especially the fridge. I think it makes an excellent focal point in the middle of the room, don’t you?