[Front Page] Article: home part one: a closet transformation

fly

Osharts 11
Oct 1, 2004
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mattressfish
So April and I have lived in this house for over five years. In that time, she has slapped on quite a bit of paint. We've filled it with lots of shit. And we've shit and banged on every surface in the place. But outside of that, we haven't really *done* anything to it. That's about to change. April had a great idea for the new year. Each month we would choose a room(ish) to update in some manner. I'm planning on writing about those changes so that you guys can ride along with us. We haven't really spoken of a price limit, but probably around $500 a room. Some rooms will cost quite a bit more and hopefully some will cost less. Wherever possible, we'll use our creativity, wits, and frugalness to create an awesome new home for as little as is feasible.

That said, first up was our closet. It was primarily chosen because we want to change the flooring in the entire house. Most rooms have carpet, which April hates. In the main living area is green tile, which we both hate. It's a concrete subfloor and I have no desire to either put down a subfloor on top of the concrete or glue flooring down. So yeah, we're using click and lock flooring. The flooring we chose isn't that crappy laminate stuff where its just a picture of wood on a sticker. It's the good stuff. Again, good enough in our price range. If we're still in this house in five or ten years and have a different style then, I won't be too wallet/heart broken to rip it out. The wood is a hand scraped birch, which really just means that it's pre-scratched and dented for you. It costs extra for the damage, but then when *we* damage it, it won't stand out as much.

In order to learn how to do this stuff, I helped a friend lay some in his home. What I mostly learned from him was exactly what NOT to do. He bought really cheap flooring and underlayment. He also bought and laid whatever was on sale throughout his house. This meant he had no less than about six types of flooring in the place. He also made the mistake of learning how to do it himself in the largest room of the house, where he lined up all the seams in the flooring - which is pretty much the worst thing that you can do.

So from that experience, I learned a few more things to not do with my own installation. First, actually read what the underlayment says on it. I didn't notice until completion that 'this side up' was printed on it. Yeah, that was the side I put down. And also, either measure or lay out the horizontal boards. You don't want to get all the way to last row of boards only to find that you need to cut the boards an inch wide. I should have written this all down sooner, because there was something else that I did wrong and I can't remember what it was. Well crap.

Anyway, that's enough textual diarrhea, on with the pics.

This is what it looked like when we started. This is the original carpet in the house. It's ten year old crappy contractor stuff. Yuck.
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Also notice the wall here. Again this is the original white paint with some holes in the walls where the previous owners butchered it. Yuck.
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*poof* Carpet is out. Now to get out those fucking tack strips. I'm sure there is an easy way to get them out. I have no idea what it is though, so those took me a while.
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Stupid hammer and little pry bar turned out to be the best things I could find
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Yay, the tack strips are finally out! Gotta vacuum and make sure the floor is clean before starting with the new flooring
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Oh yeah, we're replacing the baseboards too with something a little more contemporary. Forgot to take a pic, but we had to rip out the old stuff. Here it is with the baseboards gone and the underlayment upside down.
M5Ykw6l.jpg


Here is the flooring. The first few rows probably took me like two hours to lay, while I figured out the math and system. Made a few mistakes before, and excuse the pun, it clicked. After that, I laid the rest like a sauce bause.
CD4oRGo.jpg


This is the shot with the floor laid and a test piece of the size of the new baseboards
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This is the baseboard design that I came up with. As this piece was a mockup, its made out of particle board, but you get the idea. You'll also notice in this picture that April has painted the walls! It's a really nice light grey.
D0scIOB.jpg


Here is the completed project. We really like how it all turned out.
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As the final tree topper, we installed a nice new light and some sexy LED lighting, courtesy of Ikea.

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Total cost of the project:
$250 - flooring
$70 - new light fixture and LEDs
$50 - paint
$30 - MDF for baseboards

$400 total. Not bad.

Eventually I'd like to go back and either make or buy a closet system. However, that did not really fit within the time or money contraints. It's now February and my mother is flying in to help us with the next project.

:happy:
 

Applesauce

The Gypsy-The Acid Queen
Dec 9, 2008
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So April and I have lived in this house for over five years. In that time, she has slapped on quite a bit of paint. We've filled it with lots of shit. And we've shit and banged on every surface in the place. But outside of that, we haven't really *done* anything to it. That's about to change. April had a great idea for the new year. Each month we would choose a room(ish) to update in some manner. I'm planning on writing about those changes so that you guys can ride along with us. We haven't really spoken of a price limit, but probably around $500 a room. Some rooms will cost quite a bit more and hopefully some will cost less. Wherever possible, we'll use our creativity, wits, and frugalness to create an awesome new home for as little as is feasible.

Awesome!!! and OMG, tack strips!!! When I redid the stairs, getting those suckers out of each stair was full of suck. And the fact that I HAD to get it all done in one go because well, we need kinda need the stairs, was more suck! Also, you said you "forgot to take a pic of the baseboards "before"...but, there is a pic there. Of the old baseboards. LOL

Anyway, amazing what a difference in changing "surfaces" can make.
 
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plot

Morning Boehner
Oct 16, 2006
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Why? So we don't have any extra money?

Redoing a room is cool. Trying one a month tells me you've got way to much time on your hands.

I'm thinking you should use Aprils credit to buy a beater house then rehab it.
 

fly

Osharts 11
Oct 1, 2004
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Redoing a room is cool. Trying one a month tells me you've got way to much time on your hands.

I'm thinking you should use Aprils credit to buy a beater house then rehab it.

Do you not have time every month to do things that you enjoy?
 

eileenbunny

Druish Princess
May 25, 2005
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We are pretty much devoting one day a weekend to home improvement and we have a kid. There's so much to do here. Hanging stuff and insulating stuff and painting and cleaning and organizing. I can't wait to roll my sleeves up and finish the basement.
 

fly

Osharts 11
Oct 1, 2004
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mattressfish
Oh, and I remember the other thing I did wrong. With concrete subfloor, the underlayment needs to go up the wall. Ooops.