Saturday, September 15, 2012

Weekend Warriors: Baseboards Edition

This was the first of many weekends to come dedicated to home improvements. This weekend's project of choice was replacing the current baseboards. Luckily there are a lot of handy people in the hub's side of the family to help us. And no one will do a better job of making sure your home looks great than family (since every time they come to your house they'll be forced to look at their handy work).

Our home was blessed with several different styles of baseboards depending on the room you're looking at. Not to mention that some of the areas were in pretty poor condition - missing pieces or falling off. At first we considered just repairing the baseboards that we already had but after a jaunt at my new favorite store, Lowes, we decided to go with a much more ornate baseboard. It was more costly than just repairing what was already there, but since we'd like to add crown molding at some point we figured a more ornate  baseboard would just jive better.

The goal was to get remove all current baseboards, install new baseboards, and paint new baseboards in a weekend before carpet was to be installed. This all seemed like a completely reasonable list to complete in 48 hours, but I was wrong (I'm finding that my idea of how long home projects will take and how long they actually take are never in line with each other). We really needed to get it all done before we had the new carpet installed.

The hub's family arrived bright and early with all their handy dandy tools and got right to work. The guys started pulling out the old baseboards and the women folk followed behind pulling out or hammering in any wayward nails and evening out the wall in preparation for the new baseboards. It's amazing the kind of stuff we found under the baseboards - old paint, old wallpaper, and even even a paint brush. Then the new baseboards went in. Apparently a lot more thought goes into installing baseboards then I could've ever imagined. They installed the base boards a little higher than the hardwood floors since we were installing carpet the following weekend. Now that the carpet is installed we don't lose the look of the full base board. Genius right??? I know.
The next challenge of the day was dealing with the baseboards for the entrance between the dining room at kitchen. For some reason the tile in the kitchen is a lot higher than the rest of the flooring. *shrugs* Add that to the growing list of many strange things about this house. Luckily the hub's brother was able to come up with a creative and beautiful solution.

At the end of a terribly long day we successfully installed and caulked the baseboards throughout the house and I learned how to use a nail gun. Okay, I only used it once - but that totally still counts.

The second day of our baseboard adventures was tackled by just the hubs and myself.We went through and painted all the baseboards in the house. I figured it wouldn't take more than half the day to paint all of them. I mean they're not even 3 inches tall and we weren't going tape any of it off with painters tape since we plan on repainting long could it take to paint such a small thing? Well, the answer to that is a very long time. So long, in fact, that after a whole day of painting we had only completed the 3rd level.

FYI...painting a home with your significant other will teach you a huge deal about them. I am a details kind of person. I wanted to make sure that the baseboards were perfect and well painted. On the other hand the hubs is more of a big picture kinda guy. His forte seems to be painting large expanses like ceilings and walls. Guess it just goes to show you that we really do complete each other (did you just barf in your mouth a little?)

Since we didn't finish painting all the baseboards over the weekend - weekend warriors FAIL - we had to come back during the week to finish painting the baseboards in the main level and the bonus room. While painting the main level we got ambitious and thought it might be a good idea to try and tackle the eye sore that is our fireplace. Our fireplace was probably once a beautiful brick...and then it got painted...brick red. Why anyone would paint bricks brick red is really beyond me. We decided to just dip our toes in the water and paint the outer mantel the same color as our baseboards hoping it would make the painted bricks look less harsh. I'm still not satisfied with the results. I think we'll probably paint the bricks white too. What do you guys think?

All in all even though we didn't exactly finish our project in 1 weekend I'd say it was a success. I love the baseboards and we got everything done just in time for the carpet to be installed. Whew! These home projects are a lot more time consuming then I originally anticipated. Looks like I'm going to have to work on my patience skills when it comes to all the projects I want to tackle in this house.

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