Our first before & after reveal – The Main Bathroom, During (Toilet Replacement)

Installing the new toilet

Installing the new toilet

New and shiny!

New and shiny!

Here’s some progress shot and an after glamour shot of the new toilet bowl!  Ooooh shiny.  I lucked out and married a Boy Eagle Scout that apparently  came equipped with knowledge of how to do such things, but just in case you didn’t, here’s a great link on how to do it over at Young House Love, a favorite blog of mine.

Advertisements

Our first before & after reveal – The Main Bathroom, During (Old Toilet Removal)

Old toilet removed!

Old toilet removed!

The poop chute.

Pictured here, my adoring husband posing with the gross bottom.  He promised me that this isn’t #2 – it’s toilet wax ring residue and assorted dirt that creeped underneath the toilet.

This step is important in toilet replacement because if you leave all that nasty gunk there, the new toilet won’t get a good seal around the hole… and I don’t have to tell you why that  seal is crucial to your enjoyment of the new toilet. 😉

Our first before & after reveal – The Main Bathroom, During (Mirror Repurposing)

Mirror Repurposing

Mirror Repurposing

 

We wanted a large tall mirror to make the small bathroom feel larger.  Big mirrors are expensive, so we decided to use an old one and repurpose it for this.  This mirror originally had a rounded arch top, but a quick swipe of the circular saw and a plain mirror was revealed.  Then, we used some paint stripped and sandpaper to even everything out.  A coat of paint later and it worked out perfectly… to be continued.

Frog Tape & Enamel Paint.

Frog Tape doesn't work with Enamel Paint

Frog Tape doesn’t work with Enamel Paint

I love Frog Tape.  I swear by it.  We used it to paint our walls to protect our freshly-painted ceilings and our not-ready-to-be-painted trim.  We’ve bought a LOT of it since we’ved moved into this house.  It was only natural we would use it when we went to paint our bathroom.  Turns out… if you read the label, it doesn’t work with enamel paint.   I didn’t and this is what happens.  Be forewarned.

Our first before & after reveal – The Main Bathroom, During (Paint Fixin’)

Progress Removing Old Paint

Before we did anything, I had to remove all of the old paint from the top of the tile. There was no ‘clean line’ where the paint stopped.

One of the first things I tackled for the new bathroom was removing the old paint off of the top line of the tile.  I really liked the mint green & yellow combo, thankfully, so this was more of a facelift than a reno.  But the last owner painted the bathroom a very plain white and got it all over the tops of the tile.  In the pic above you can see where I removed the paint starting from the right and was working my way left.

Our first before & after reveal – The Main Bathroom, Before.

It really should be titled our first before & during because nothing is really ever an “after” for long.  In fact, even in the post’s “after” it’s still not done with all the “small things” – but more on that later!

In early May, we decided to have people over for drinks to celebrate my birthday.  The realization was very quick (we are talking minutes) that we’d need to update the main bathroom for people to use.  For the 6 weeks we’ve been living in the house before this, we had used the “master” bathroom even though it was uglier and much more cramped  (AND more on that later…like usual) .  We hadn’t been using this main bathroom because of its oblong toilet we wanted to replace before using so we decided now was the best time to accomplish that.  Here are the before shots taken the first time we toured the house…

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Stay tuned  for the “during” shots & then the big reveal!

Want to see something gross?

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Pictured above is actually DURING the cleanup of one of the windows in our new home.  That’s right – they were ever way way dirtier than pictured here.  Every window in the place was caked with orange dirt.  We later realized it was probably the result of some indoor smoking (something suggested by a friend – which we had not considered).  It is incredibly gross though and we finally got it off with a LOT of elbow grease + 409 cleaner + Windex (obviously).

The only “after” I seemed to take was once Kev & his dad mounted the new fauxwood window blinds, but it’s obviously in that slideshow as well haha  As you can hopefully see though, they look about brand new!  Elbow grease, man – something that after two months here that we’ve realized is both priceless & in short supply haha

Floor “Quirks”

When sharing our “after” photos of our hardwood floors after we ripped up the carpet & hand scrubbed them, I mentioned that the floors definitely have their “quirks.”  We’ve noticed that whoever decided to ‘personalize’ this house before us didn’t do it without thinking about how easily it could be undone. One of the areas this was most obvious was the hardwood floors.  Obviously, they did not come from the school of hardwood lovers because they downright abused them.

First, in the arena of not intentional and possibly not blame worthy, the black spots that we’ve read completely contradictory information on how to get them out (none of which has worked so far – so we are starting to believe sand&restore is the only option)…

Black Spot on Master Bedroom Floor

Black Spot on Master Bedroom Floor

The green thing in the picture is a hardwood scrubber that we borrowed from my in-laws that didn’t have any effect on the black spot.  So much for that idea.  If you have any suggestions on how to at least fade these black spots until we get around to refinishing, please do share!

One thing we discovered that is definitely what I’d consider a “reckless disregard” for the hardwood floors were cheap adhesive vinyl tiles stuck to the floor & walls of the closets in the bedroom.  I ripped up one closet’s worth and then struggled for 8 hours straight trying all kinds of different methods of getting the leftover adhesive off of the floor to no avail.

MBR Closet Floor Tiles

MBR Closet Floor Tiles

MBR Closet Floor Stickiness During Cleanup

MBR Closet Floor Stickiness During Cleanup

The blue shown in the ‘during’ picture is actually my fault since I stuck down my knee pad and it attached to the adhesive..whoops.  my bad.  Like I said, I spent hours upon hours trying to get this adhesive up.  It came up in huge brown chunks that were absolutely disgusting, but even after getting so much of it up, it was still sticky.  I eventually admitted temporary defeat so I could get some more pressing things done & threw a rug down so we could use the carpet.  I admit, not the smartest thing, but I had to move on for the time being.  Stay tuned.

In one of our “favorite” finds (yes thats sarcastic), when we ripped up the carpet in our office, we found this beaut…

Office Closet Painted Floor

Office Closet Painted Floor

Yep, thats right… they painted the hardwood white.  I suppose it wouldn’t have been so heartbreaking if they had done a good job at it and it looked intentional and beautiful, but they just lazily splattered paint everywhere and it has huge mismatched brush strokes going against the grain of the wood and the seams of the planks.  Absolutely heartbreaking.  So how did we fix this?  We didn’t.  I didn’t even try.  It’s something we will have to fix when we finally decide to get the floors refinished (hopefully something a little more chocolatey).  Since it’s in the closet, it’s mostly covered by the drawers we placed in there & it’s closed otherwise.  So I just have to deal with it for now.

And finally, the most confusing thing they did to the hardwood…

Linen Closet Wallpapered Floor

Linen Closet Wallpapered Floor

Linen Closet Floor After

Linen Closet Floor After

Yes, you read that right… they wallpapered the floor.  It took me about an hour or so to sit and crack the wallpaper off the floor and then clean up the adhesive that was left over.  Thankfully, it was completely hard and brittle so it came up rather easily.  The bulk of my time was spent on a small portion towards the back that had formed an everlasting bond and was in an awkward area that was not easy to reach.  I am just happy it wasn’t the same scenario left for us inside of our master bedroom closets.

 

Have you ripped up carpeting in your home and found some less than stellar presents left from former owners?  Care to share?  Leave it in the comments!

Floors “After”

(…we ripped up the carpet and I scrubbed them on my hands & knees)

As mentioned here (and probably a dozen other places), we made the not-so-hard decision to rip up all the disgusting carpeting from the house to reveal the worn (but still in pretty great condition) hardwood underneath.  Here’s a picture of our office with the ceilings painted, the walls painted, and a new ceiling fan installed, but with the carpeting still down:

Painted but Carpeted

Painted but Carpeted

Then the next step (that we completed in every room, not just this one) was to pull up the carpet, the baseboards, all of the random nails & staples & etc, then handscrub the floors.  I am hoping to post a quick “how to” on that later.  Here’s our “after” photo:

Freshly Scrubbed Floors

Freshly Scrubbed Floors

The view is almost identical.. except the camera is held in a different orientation (sorry, I am learning to fix my before&after photo taking quirks as we go).  I’d say its mucho improved.  I don’t know why anybody would look at this and prefer carpet.  haha  Of course, it didn’t come without its quirks.  More on that later!

Naturally, we plan on painting all of the trim a nice crisp white.  This room makes it especially necessary since whoever lived here before decided not only should the room be flesh pink, but the top half of the trim (visible above the carpet) should also be flesh pink.  I shake my head at this.

 

What are your thoughts on our before and after?  We’d love to hear some feedback!