Journal of a Remodelee, Part 8 of 11
Originally appeared in Hills Publications, May 12, 2006 and ANG Newspapers, May 13, 2006
Although there are more surprises and scheduling conflicts, Don and his wife, Sonia, are beginning to enjoy the changes, starting with their new kitchen.
We now have a beautiful kitchen. No more washing dishes in the bathroom sink and shower. Sonia did discover that the kitchen sink foot petal needs adjusting, a minor problem in the scheme of things.
Sam, the foreman, and his men handled odds and ends the past two days. They will not return until the replacement bathtub arrives. Meanwhile, we scheduled the painting of the kitchen, family room, bedrooms and master bath.
The hall bath will be painted after construction of that room is complete. Sonia, I and the poodles will then move out of the 400 sq. ft. room we’ve been living in since October and have that room painted. The exterior of the house will be done last, when weather permits.
Dewey, a master plasterer, came today to patch sheet rock and skip-trowel various areas. He is a real craftsman; however, despite our pleas for him to cover up and not create a mess, he got plaster over everything: cabinets, door knobs, handles and floor. We took this in stride. Wow, what growth on our part!
Interior painting begins tomorrow. We know from long experience to use premium paints and a quality painter. Sonia and I have been doing a lot of thinking about colors, both warm and cold, for walls, ceilings and trim. We are also paying attention to tone, color linking one room to another and making it all interesting.
Sonia went to the paint store and returned with nine quarts so we can try out the colors beforehand. Good thing. Some colors, when painted on, matched the sample chips and our expectations; others did not. For example, the kitchen/family room color chip for Spanish Cedar is a warm, glove-leather brown. On the wall, it is an ugly, rust color.
Then there is Baked Brick, the shade we chose for the ceiling to go with Spanish Cedar. It is supposed to be two shades lighter and the same tone. After brushing it on, it looks very gray and cold, not at all a match. Sonia will go back to the paint store tomorrow and ask them to remix the Spanish Cedar as we are sure they made a mistake.
Sonia returned to the paint store. After checking in their computer, they acknowledged the formula for Spanish Cedar was “a bit off.” The manager remixed the color for us to try again. In addition, Sonia brought home another wall and a ceiling color for us to sample.
Some good news today turned into a scheduling snafu. This morning, as the painters were busy priming the interior, Sam showed up unannounced with one of his men. He happily declared that our new tub arrived two weeks sooner than expected.
They removed the old bathtub, replaced it with the new one, and began working on the hall bath, as well as other parts of the house. Meanwhile, the painter was unhappy. He had asked me to promise that the contractor’s men would not be here while he was painting as they would slow him down and create dust and dirt.
By the end of the day, it was clear that either the workmen or the painter would have to stop for awhile. After discussing it with the contractor, we agreed it made most sense to have his men come back after the painter was done. The complicating factor is that the floor refinishing people are scheduled to begin March 6th. We had to book them six weeks in advance and do not want to slow down the schedule.
Painting drama: I came home from work in the late afternoon and saw the new living room color. It is the chocolate brown we wanted, but it doesn’t look right. Maybe, I thought, it was because it is a rainy day. Sonia had similar apprehension. We decided to wait until a sunny day to know for sure. Luckily, today is a Friday and the painters do not begin again until Monday, so we have time.
Today is sunny. This is my chance to look over the kitchen/family room and see how I feel about the color. Coming into the room does not evoke the pleasure of experiencing the new colors in the bedrooms. On the contrary, as I entered, I felt the same kind of sick feeling I had yesterday. I stood there awhile to take it in and figure out what was bothering me.
Was it the ceiling and/or wall colors? No. They matched the kitchen tile floor, granite and cabinets perfectly. Then it came to me. The paint was much too shiny.
The painter, Cesar, who we are very pleased with, recommended we continue the satin (shiny), kitchen finish into the family room for continuity. This was after I had suggested changing the finish from satin to flat in the family room and hall. Sonia and I should not have acquiesced, but it was not easy to visualize and we trusted Cesar.
One thing we know for sure, we cannot live with this glossy color in the family room and hall. Fortunately, the painters only did one coat. We are hoping using flat for the second coat will cover the satin.
We will tell Cesar on Monday and pay for the new paint. The decision makes us both feel better, but we are still a bit nervous until we see the change.
Journal of a Remodelee, Part 1 – It begins; we know there will be the inevitable surprises, but optimistically hope previous experiences will help renovations go smoothly.
Journal of a Remodelee, Part 2 – Holding our breaths that some irreversible glitch does not take place while we are out earning a living.
Journal of a Remodelee, Part 3 – An eliminated window is mistakenly left in the plans while miscalculations in light fixture placement increases costs.
Journal of a Remodelee, Part 4 – Even with a great construction crew, once again we learn you can’t count on them to think of everything.
Journal of a Remodelee, Part 5 – Mislabeling of tile grout almost results disaster.
Journal of a Remodelee, Part 6 – We are reminded how important it is for at least one of us to stay close at hand to answer questions as they arise.
Journal of a Remodelee, Part 7 – Back from a holiday break, we experience more surprises and a frustrating accident.
Journal of a Remodelee, Part 8 – Surprises and scheduling conflicts can’t detract from enjoying our new kitchen.
Journal of a Remodelee, Part 9 – It is all coming together…almost.
Journal of a Remodelee, Part 10 – City inspections and the finish line.
Journal of a Remodelee, Part 11 – Eight months’ worth of do’s and don’ts.