Well, the floor is done...now all I need to do is add a little "froo-froo," find some inspiration for wall decor and reupholstery the club chairs.
.....all in due time.
This flooring has been a long time coming. With 4 cats and two dogs, carpet is NOT something I want in my house and this was the last holdout. I love how easy it is to clean this floor! Just sweep, then "mop" with a dust mop sprayed with a special laminate flooring cleaner. I personally avoid "Swiffers." I read once that the cleaner was toxic to animals...and truthfully, when I quit using it my older kitty perked right up after being a little sickly for a loooong time....coincidence? Maybe...but I'm not taking any chances!
There is a MAJOR downside to dark laminate (Imperial Teak)....it shows every little fuzz and fluff. Not a good thing when you have 2 white, long haired kitties and a light colored dog. Dark laminate and wood flooring may be all the rage, but think carefully before you install it...you WILL see the dust and crumbs!
But I am NOT going to gripe about having to sweep this floor! I would rather sweep it every day than shampoo carpet 2-3-4 times a year...and know it is STILL not clean! If you have ever pulled carpet, you know exactly what I mean. I don't care how clean you are, you could plant tomatoes under your carpet!!!
Anywho, I started this little journey here by painting the furniture...and added a little here with the addition of an "accent" color. But no matter how much painting I did or froo-froo I added, I just couldn't get past the flooring. So I ordered the laminate I wanted and ripped up the old carpet and glue down hardwood! (here)
Brian took two days vacation to help...God bless that wonderful man! Usually the DIY tasks are left up to me, but when I need a helping hand he is right there with me!
I could give a step by step tutorial on how to install laminate...but again, there are HUNDREDS of tutorials online. Your best bet is to follow the directions on the product you buy so you don't risk voiding any warranty!
Is this a DIY project? For me yes. For your "average" DIYer...depends on your ability. Watch a few online tutorials and gauge for yourself. There is a little "skill" involved. And let me tell ya...two days of this and you will feel it!
My only regret is that I did not use the highest grade padding. I used the "mid-grade." The "cush" is fine, but I don't think it is as quiet as the flooring I installed upstairs with the high grade padding. Live and learn!
I have a little step down from the office to the bedroom...I made it using an oak tread and it was originally stained to match the light oak flooring. Rather than go to all the expense of buying a new tread, rebuilding the step and staining it to match the new laminate, I decided to try a little gel stain treatment. I ordered the General Finishes "Brown Mahogany" and PRESTO!!!
Dang near a perfect match...so close that I decided to try it on all the threshold pieces. If you have ever installed wood flooring or laminate, you know the threshold, transition and trim pieces can be a huge expense! Fortunately the gel stain worked like a charm and I was able to reuse everything I had!
I like my baseboard trim and I am not a big fan of base shoe molding so I removed all the existing trim before we installed the flooring (see how to do that here), pulled the nails and cleaned off all the caulk and "fuzz." I marked all the boards on the back so I knew were they all went! After the floors were done, I reinstalled the trim right on top of the new floor. I put wax paper under the trim so I wouldn't have to tape off the flooring when I repainted everything (a little trick my dad taught me!) When you are done painting, before the paint dries, just pull the wax paper from under the trim...simple!
Rather than buy a large rug, I decided to go with two "scatter" rugs on both sides of the bed. For now I am just reusing my old rug by the back door...someday I will probably change it for something different...someday. Just so you know how long I hang on to stuff...I have had this rug for over TWENTY years...seriously.
I keep the mantel decor clean and simple. The monkey? I have no idea when or where I got her, but she has been with me for many years! As a mom of young children, I could relate...
I went searching for material to make a new cushion cover for the mid century chair. I only found a few fabrics that had the right colors but none really tripped my trigger...sooooo...someday...maybe. The black vinyl is "true" to the piece and it doesn't bother me too terribly much!
I put new curtains up on the front window. I only put curtains there so I can block out the sun when it gets really hot...otherwise, I never close them! (I am at the end of a cul-de-sac...if you can see in my bedroom window you are probably standing in my yard...that's a whole nuther problem!) I love the color and the design but unfortunately they are a tad too short....soooo....what to do? Right now, ignore it. Maybe someday I will add some length...maybe...someday.
Day two we installed the flooring in the office...totally awesome and I love how the two rooms flow together!
Again, I still have a lot to do...but getting the floor done is a major accomplishment! Kind of creates a great pallet for any future changes.
As I have said often, I don't want "stuff" just to have "stuff." So I am usually pretty picky about what I decorate with. Even simple little "knick-knacks" and wall decor have to have meaning or purpose or I have to seriously love it. It has only taken me 14 years to get this far, so patience is obviously a virtue I have when it comes to decorating.
Well, that and selective "blindness."