Thursday, January 2, 2014

De & Con Struction

Not too long ago our dining room was red and brownish with a cracking, water damaged plaster wall.
You might remember it from this little peek. It was not what we called nice. Certainly not what we call pretty.

I am pleased to announce that the walls have been given a lift and that room is looking rather perky. Mega better and more us. However, before I go showing it off, let's rewind a bit and look at the process.

Here is the water damaged wall that started it all. From the picture it's hard to tell just how warped and cracked the plaster in the corner above the door really was but you can also note the condition of the wood floor in the corner. Water does really terrible things inside houses and that wall was not looking so good. Fortunately, the water problem had been solved and the aftermath is all that we had to deal with. Since we have yet to get furniture for that room we figured now was the time to fix it.

Because Keith's dad filled our heads with plastering horror stories about the difficulties of getting a smooth, even finish we decided that drywall was our best bet. Right or wrong that is the road we took.  Basically, we chose not to cut out the old, damaged plaster and work a patch in but to replace the entire wall with drywall.  Maybe it was more work but it was the only way we could guarantee ourselves a good looking end result. Therefore, the board and batten (which is actually just trim boards, no large, flat panels here) had to come off for the demo.

Pulling off the board and batten on this wall then triggered another thought. An added "fix". One that had me asking Keith, "How hard would it be to pull off all the board and batten to drop it down so it lines up with the top of the hutch?" You see, my grid-loving, graphic designer eye just could not handle that the top shelf of the built in hutch did not align with the board and batten. Seriously, I know most people didn't notice the misalignment, but it was like a knife in my eye. I might have done a happy jig when Keith said it wouldn't be hard. Then I thought, "If we are going to be changing up the trim, let's add a handy dandy little picture shelf to the top. Then we shall not have to put nails in the remaining plaster walls. Girl, you are a genius!"

This "genius" is what lead to our living room looking like this:

Nothing like a good ol' pile of rug and boards to make a room look cozy.

But getting back to our wall fix...
Once the woodwork was removed, the doorway tarped off, the drop cloth laid, then the plaster was demolished.  Surprisingly, the lath boards underneath the plaster were still in great condition. We were expecting, dreading,  serious warping or even mold. Since there was none of that we left it and hung the drywall on top of the lath.

Then came the taping and mudding. Believe it or not, 100 years of paint had built the walls up enough that when we removed the top board and batten trim there was a bit of a trench. Not only did the new drywall need mud, but so did the entire perimeter of the room.

And that is the beginnings of wall revival in our house.
While I've crammed it all together in this post, do not be deceived about the timeline. This took place over the course of a week, not a day. We are total newbs to drywall and were working on this in the evenings after work and dinner.  It was kinda slow going. BUT SO WORTH IT. It looks so good now that it's finished!

To be continued...


  1. Very beautiful and very you! So excited to see your house's journey to being your home!

  2. Wow, looks and sounds like a tonne of work but must be so very rewarding too! You're on such a great journey with your beautiful old home. Good for you!

  3. Looking good!! I love the mirrors on the hutch:) AA