Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Bathroom vanity



In this post, I've decided to try focusing on a single project rather than my usual update of many systems...

One of the indoors projects we have managed to complete is the vanity for the upstairs bathroom.

It started with this idea I had that I wanted to use an old bureau rather than buying a vanity from Lowes or Home Depot. 

I found what I was looking for at Hobart Village, an antiques coop mall in Townsend.  It is quarter sawn oak, and looks nice but is not a valuable antique - this is important because she is going to get chopped up a bit as you will see...

I forgot to take a good "before" photo with all the drawers in place, so this one from the day we put the bureau in place will have to do.
























In this photo you can see how the plumbing fits through the holes we cut out of the back.





Next we took the entire top off, and prepped the opening to receive the sink.










The sink will be mounted under the counter top.

I took a trip over to Merrimack Stone with the idea that I would be ordering a Silestone counter top.  Silestone looks similar to Corian but it is a composite using stone dust.  I found out that I would have to order a full sheet - very $$$ - so they encouraged me to go out into the yard and see if there were any remnants that I liked. 

And guess what?  I found this absolutely gorgeous piece of stone called Crema de Marfil.  It is a beige limestone, that comes from Spain and originates from the Eocene period (other authorities say Jurassic) with many fossil fragments (foraminifera + echinoderma).

Here is a close-up of the stone.  It looks much better in person.


The top was cut to nearly the same dimensions and configuration of the original bureau top.  And here it is being installed.

The project arrested at this point for a few months, and we just recently got around to finishing it.

The two top drawers had to be mostly cut away for the plumbing, rendering them useless as actual drawers.


They are secured in place with screws.


The middle drawer was partially cut away, but still has some useful storage space in it.


And the bottom drawer just needed a small notch cut out.


And here is the completed sink and vanity.




Just the tub area, closet doors, and some trim and this bathroom will be done!


Friday, February 24, 2012

Still plugging away


I see that I have not posted anything since December, and now here it is nearing the end of February which shows you that progress has been much slower.   BUT,  we are still plugging away!

So here's what we've been up to this winter.


The Attic

Yes - the attic again... 

The temps in the attic have been much better since getting the ridge vent replaced.  We still needed to pull the blown-in insulation out of the venting channels.  You might remember that we spent a lot of time (seems like oh so long ago now...) constructing these channels out of rigid foam insulation, because Dean felt they would work better than the usual flimsy ones which are prone to collapsing.  But of course they will not work when plugged with insulation.

When Dean went up, he noticed that there was still some moisture, so hopefully this will fix it.


Dean uses a length of wood with a hook made from a wire coat hanger on the end.  Using this "specialized tool", he pulls the insulation out.


All the while, trying to minimize compressing the remainder of the insulation...

Dean wanted to test out the venting for the dormer on the south side of the house, and got the idea that he would send some smoke up into the channels from the soffit side, and if we could see it come out the ridge vent, we would know that we had good venting.


So, we borrowed Rose's bee smoker...


Dean sends some smoke up into the soffit.


and... well, you cannot see it this photo, but in about a minute, we saw the smoke come out the ridge vent!  Successful experiment!



Shingling






Since this winter has been so mild, Dean has been able to continue to work on finishing the shingling, and got this corner of the South dormer done.

This section was very slow going, what with weaving the corners, doing the "snaggletooth" pattern, a majority of the shingles needing to be cut, and working in the very tight and awkward space up against the roof.


That vertical section of white wood is where a future bracket will be placed.



Barn Roof brackets

We made the roof overhangs on the barn so wide that they needed brackets as additional structural support.  Where as the brackets on the house will be purely decorative.


But still, I was jealous that the barn got them before "my" house!


Storage units

Learning that our health insurance premium is DOUBLING for this year, prompted us to look for places in our budget where we could save some $$$. 

The storage units were the obvious choice, and so we got to work emptying the unit we were renting in Townsend that had all of Dean's really BIG and HEAVY tools like welders and such.


After we emptied this unit, we tackled the 2 rented storage containers that had been living on our property for the past 2 years.  Sorry Eagle Leasing, it's been real, but we are done with you!

Before


After




Inside the House

Inside the house projects have been slower than I would like.  I will admit that I am antsy to get it done, and to hang artwork and family photos on the walls, and get books onto bookshelves, etc. Dean asked me what I want for my upcoming birthday - and I answered - "I want the house done!" So I went around the house, room by room, and formulated a "punch list" of things I felt needed to be done to finish each room.  Here's what I came up with:
 
Punch list as of February 2012
Downstairs Bathroom
·         Paint trim
·         Fix defect in shower surround
·         Patch plaster around shower pipe & install escutcheon
Living Room
·         Finish installing trim
·         Paint trim
·         Move electrical outlet
·         Re-do baseboard heat enclosure
Dining Room
·         Finish installing trim
·         Paint trim
·         Construct bench for window bump-out
Kitchen/Pantry
·         Finish installing trim
·         Paint trim
·         Finish installing hardware on pocket door  - Done!
Entryway
·         Paint trim
Stairwell
·         Paint walls, ceiling and trim including stair risers
·         Install light fixture
·         Finish display shelf
·         Re-do hand rails (we liked the tree rails we did in the basement so much, we decided to do this in the main stairwell, too...)
Main Bedroom
·         Closet door
·         Finish installing trim
·         Paint trim
·         Finish baseboard heat enclosures
Guest room/office
·         Finish installing trim
·         Paint trim
·         Closet door
·         Build bookcases
·         Finish display shelf
Upstairs Bathroom
·         Closet doors
·         Finish installing trim
·         Paint trim
·         Tile tub surround
·         Install shower fixtures
·         Install towel racks

This list does not include the laundry room and my dance room in the basement, both of which need EVERYTHING! I think ( I know!) Dean is sorry he asked... So we agreed to pick one project, and I chose getting the stairwell finished.  So he has been working on prepping the plaster (you will recall that our plasterers left the walls with a lot of defects and gouges...) and starting painting.

  
He is working right this minute as I blog the afternoon away, and I am listening to his preferred painting soundtrack - Led Zeppelin, of course...   Happy birthday to me! 

OK - that's it for now.

We have been working on a few other things over the winter, and I will update you on those in a couple of future posts - coming soon!