Sunday, 23 February 2014

The next project...

The Edwardian wardrobe sold pretty fast and is being collected this morning. I haven't been able to start on the 'new' dresser as the wardrobe is in the same room and there's no room to swing a cat. (What a curious expression that is!)

I haven't made a start on the kitchen as I really need to steel myself for that. Food preparation, paint and dust are not a good combination.

So here's what I chose to get stuck into...




...my daughters bedroom floor. I don't dislike the dark wood. I stained the floorboards of my last house dark. But these ones have seen better days.




Paint spots and a certain amount of butchery by plumbers over the years mean they're pretty buggered.




I could lift the damaged ones and replace them but I really can't be arsed. So the look we shall be embracing here is RUSTIC.

Rustic allows butchered boards and even a bit of a hole in one area.

I like pale floors but here's the thing. The cupboard in this room is this one...




White painted boards. If I do white painted boards on the floor too I think we risk snow blindness and too much of a good thing.
Also would perfect white painted floorboards just show up all the cuts and holes? I think so.

So I think I'm going to try something a bit experimental.
I'm thinking of a dingy grey/white paint wash over the boards to break up the monotony and add some interest to the room.

Like this...


The trick is to choose the right colour. The floorboards are pale when freshly sanded but get more orange over time. If you just use a white paint wash you can end up with pinky tones.

I thought that the addition of a bit of cool grey would calm down any orange in the future. If you dilute the paint 50/50 with water you get a wash which lets the wood grain show through, looks tres rustic and forgives shoddy boards. I hope.

So seeing as I'm tight frugal I decided to sand the whole floor by hand with a belt sander.
This was stupid.

After five hours I was only half way through.


I've given myself 'white knuckle' and had to take strong painkillers last night to soothe my aching arm.
I'll have to hire an edge sander to reach the edges. I probably could have done the whole room in a few hours with a floor sander. I've used them before.

While I'm already creating utter chaos and mess, I think I'll also replace the shallow 1960's skirting for something deeper and prettier. It'll be a bugger to get off as it runs through the cupboard and I don't have the right sort of saw. Perhaps I can hire one of those too.

Sanding floors has to be The. Most. Disgusting DIY job imaginable. The dust gets everywhere. I'm having a day off today to prevent nerve damage and do more pressing things like shop for food.

Until this room is sanded my daughter is sleeping in my bed. She burrows into me all night. So I'm not sleeping. The upstairs is an obstacle course of books and furniture. My husband is a bit cross. I really hope this job is over by Tuesday.

Wish me luck!

21 comments:

  1. Good luck! Have you thought about taking up knitting?! Much less mess! Although I will look forward to the results! 😊

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    1. Haha! Can't now. My arm is damaged. And knitting won't improve the house! xx

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  2. Good luck indeed! I'm sure the floorboards will look utterly fabulous when they're done with the white/grey wash, but in the meantime, rest your arm and your frayed nerves!
    I think the "no room to swing a cat" phrase is supposed to come from the cat'o'nine'tails whip used as a punishment on old ships, but that might just be a myth. See, can't help at all with the DIY but have useless pseudo-knowledge like that which gets me absolutely nowhere! xxxx

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    1. Well that makes much more sense than swinging an actual cat! My turn to impress you with historical knowledge; In Roman times they didn't have loo paper so they used 'poo sticks' to cleanse their derrieres. A poo stick was a bit of sponge on a stick. We still speak of this today unwittingly when we say, 'Getting hold of the wrong end of the stick!' xxxx

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  3. The floorboards have come up a treat! My suggestion was going to be lime waxed floorboards but your idea will give the same result, only cheaper I imagine. Btw the pins have a blob of pva glue on the ends so the postie will not get pricked.

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    1. It should be a very similar effect. The trouble with lime wax is that it wears off and needs to be redone. That just sounds like housework to me. The paint wash under 3 coats of floor varnish should last for ever and ever. :)

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  4. You are certainly a busy bee! Do you ever rest from your diy ing? Emma Kate, I would love some of your energy!!
    Your house is wonderful and I cant wait to see it appear in print!

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    1. No rest with a magazine shoot on the horizon!

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  5. you are nuts but impressive. The floor will be lovely but what a lot of work. I'd have just put a roll of carpet down ( shamefully lazy streak) ♥

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    1. Too expensive Teri. We'd want to do the whole of the upstairs in the same colour and it'd be a budget breaker...x

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  6. OMG......better you than me....and ewwww....I wish I wasn't eating a hot buttered crumpet and coffee in bed for breakfast reading about a poo stick :-)
    You have picked the right paint wash colour for sure xxxxxx

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  7. Well done on selling that lovely wardrobe so quickly! Not that I'm surprised, it was fab.
    Have to admit I love the dark floorboards - that's the colour of ours and I adore them! x

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  8. I think the finish you've chosen will be fab, particularly with some grey in it. But God, five HOURS of sanding??!! Poor you.

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    1. The price to pay to make things pretty sadly...

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  9. I'm fairly sure 'pretty buggered' is a technical term - I know I use it a lot about my house! I've been considering sanding and painting the floor in my bedroom, I've got the same thing with boards having been cut for plumbing etc so I'd need to go very rustic - like the idea of grey rather than white paint and definitely worth changing the skirting, beautiful skirting really finishes off a room.

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    1. Most definitely a technical term! I totally agree about the skirting. When we got the floors done downstairs, it was the skirting I couldn't stop gazing at. x

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  10. I'm getting withdrawal symptoms from your floor ... how's it going?

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    1. I'm on sander no. 4.
      Sander no. 1 caught fire.
      Sander 2 was a floor sander I couldn't even use!
      Sander 3 was an edge sander I loved using.
      Sander no. 4 replaces sander no. 1 and I've been looking after a little boy for a few days so I've not so much as plugged it in! The floor is 90% done.... I'm rethinking the whole scandi paleness thing though...
      Saturday is the day I get the floor sanding finished. For sure. xx

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  11. Cripes! I've been painting a bookshelf alcove, after 4 coats of primer I gave up and just loaded the books back on it. It had been naked for 12 years so I guess it can wait for it's finish.
    I had a white kitchen floor once - it drove me nuts for showing black cat hairs etc. Hubs bought us a robot vacuum cleaner so I might go pale again.

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