The last couple of months have been absolutely hectic, I have lost count of how many days its been since we bought our house. We are almost done with our first renovations and I am beyond excited about it. Once we get the main living areas painted we can officially MOVE IN!
Lets start from the beginning… We were a little surprised to find out that the walls in our 1800’s home were not drywall. Queue the “cute new home owners” comments. It just wasn’t one of the things that crossed our minds as a possible issue we would have to face. Let alone face on day one. We walked in thinking we could just remove the horribly old wall paper and paint… Boy were we wrong.
We decided to start with the two largest and what was probably going to be the most used rooms; the living room (above) and dinning room (below). After pulling the paper down in the dinning room we learned that the walls were actually plaster! Plaster has the texture of cement and is probably not the greatest material to have on your walls now a days. After this discovery, we took a few days off to regroup; figure out a new game plan. We debated between overlaying drywall on top of the plaster or tearing it down and starting over. After much debate, in the end we made the decision to break it down and start from the studs. This way was going to take a lot more time and a bit more money but Matt and I felt like doing it the “right” way was better then putting a bandage over top of it.
Because we took this rout, we ended up finding out a lot about the house…like there were no rules back in the days the home was built. My dad is a project manager for a construction company and he found himself at a loss around every corner. I’ll get into that a little later. The most important thing we found out was that our exterior walls were not insulated… This fact shocked the hell out of us since the house seemed to hold heat extremely well. We have a fairly new heating system and in the dead of winter the house was always comfortable. None-the-less, this needed to be addressed first!
I am proud to say that I insulated the walls all myself! 🙂 After that, we planned out our next moves around my dads schedule. Like I said before, he works in construction and has been in the field most of his life. Which is a BIG bonus for us, not so much for him. So he set some time aside for us and he and my uncle Kenny worked their ASSES OFF on our house for two weekends. But not before we ran into electrical issues (old stiff wires), 10 foot sheets of drywall being a PAIN, old wood studs do not accept screws easily, and the fact that the studs were not an equal distance apart. This is regulated now a days but seeing as this home is so old… not so much here. It became an issue when we tried lining up the edges of the drywall to the studs. A lot more measuring and cutting to puzzle piece the walls together. That and the studs themselves being so old they were not the easiest things to screw into. Taking a lot longer then expected. If you’ve ever put drywall up, you’ll understand… it’s not fun.
After two VERY long weekends, the drywall was up!!! Just this one layer to the rooms caused them to look dramatically different. The rooms looked brighter, looked bigger, and finally started looking like a home! We then spend a couple of days with my Uncle mudding, taping, and sanding the place. This is what are left with now…Next step PAINTING!!!!