Sunday, May 29, 2011

1906 Building Resource

Sharon was excited earlier today when she discovered online an architecture book titled "Building Construction and Superintendence" that gave information about how gutters were done in 1906. It had several diagrams and showed how the gutters were installed.

And as Sharon dug into the book further, she discovered all kinds of great stuff. It had information about soapstone, siding, interior woodwork—it was like—WOW! What a great resource! Too bad it was missing so many of the diagrams and figures.

Now, imagine Sharon's surprise when she realized this book was written by F.E. Kidder. Frank E. Kidder—Jeff's Great-Grandfather! We actually have this book (or rather series of books) in our personal library! How lucky is that? It was packed and stowed away for safe-keeping during the remodel, but now that we know what a treasure it is—we went and pulled it out of storage.

Sharon is now hoping to post short sections from these books, as they relate to our remodel.

Living Room Stencil

Anxious to get started on some project for the house, Sharon decided to try and figure out the stencil plan for the living room. She had previously purchased this Tulip Pendant stencil from Trimbelle River Studio, but it turns out it's too big.

So a change of plan was in order! Sharon decided to give this stencil a try and see if it would work. Plus the stencil has the feature of having some purple color in it! (Sharon's favorite.) This stencil was purchased from the American Home Stencil's Arts & Crafts collection.

It is inspired by this beautiful wisteria beside the front entry.

Sharon practiced this one quite a few times. And also tried a small bit on the actual paint sample for the living room to see if the colors were dark enough.

It's possible it's a little small for the frieze in the living room, but Sharon can't find one that's larger but not too large. We may go ahead and use this one anyway.

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Progress on Roof

Jeff and Sharon were pretty excited at the prospect of a quiet four day weekend—then the roofers asked if they could work. Tough decision, but it's still raining and our roof has been covered in plastic for a couple weeks now. We were ready for the roof to get put on.

The correct color shingles were delivered on Friday morning.The roofers were out by Friday afternoon beginning the install, right up until the time it started pouring down bucketfulls—then they called it a day. Sharon was just as glad; it surely wasn't safe for them to be working in that weather. The weather today has proved to be much nicer. Mostly overcast with some occasional sun.

This afternoon they finally shingled a portion we could actually see! We've got a green roof!!As a reminder, this is the exterior inspiration photo we finally settled on. Of course, in 1912 the roof would surely have been cedar shingles. We're not going that route because we don't want to deal with the ongoing maintenance. We instead chose 50-year composite shingles recommended by Consumers Reports and hopefully won't have to do anything with the roof again while we live here.The roofers seem to be making good progress and may finish on Monday. Yes, they're working the holiday too! Sigh. We hope our neighbors don't get mad at us.

This last bit was added months later: Sharon discovered Sears was selling red and green-colored asphalt shingles in 1903. Here is an advertisement from their 1903 Modern Plumbing catalog. So, maybe our roof is a bit more period than we thought.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Exterior Lighting

We had originally planned to order our exterior lighting from Rejuvenation, but our awesome electrician recommended a couple different companies which he said made high quality fixtures based on his experience installing them for earlier jobs: Minka Lighting and Arroyo Craftsman.

So Sharon cruised around the internet and looked for options made by those companies. A visit to their website convinced us Arroyo Craftsman was the right choice: "Each Arroyo Craftsman product is manufactured in our plant in Baldwin Park, California. Each Arroyo Craftsman fixture is handcrafted by American artisans."

Sharon chose the Mission line made by Arroyo Craftsman. They were relatively affordable (especially compared to the Rejuvenation options) and we could use standard screw-in CFL bulbs. We chose the raw copper finish (not the finishes shown in these pictures) with the Gold White Iridescent Glass. We ordered them from which says they're special order and will take 4-6 weeks for delivery. We'll report back on our success.

We are also eliminating our mailbox slot which leaks exterior cold/heat so we ordered a copper mailbox.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Auditioning Parlor Colors

We got some new color samples today for the parlor area. The architect and designer recommended we try to use variations of either the living room color or the dining room color rather than a third color.We'll probably end up going with the green combo because the gold seems to change color depending on the angle; not really a feature.

Amazing Coordination

Since this remodel started at the end of March, Sharon has been constantly amazed at just how many people work on our house from day to day. For example, today we had a total of 5 crews here throughout the day.
  1. Craftsman Design had a couple guys out finishing off the exterior prep for the new siding installation.

  2. There was a worker taping off the unfinished woodwork on the main floor in preparation for restoring the plaster; he spent all day on that project. Apparently the plaster is in bad shape from all the scraping trying to remove the super-evil wallpaper. Or maybe it was already in bad shape and that's why they installed wallpaper in the first place.

  3. The electricians were here for a few hours to finish up rewiring the main floor. Today they officially declared the knob and tube eradicated from the main floor! Woo Hoo! Now we just have a bit left in the attic and maybe a little in the basement where we're living.

  4. There was a couple of painters here painting the kitchen and main floor bathroom.

  5. There was a crew of three guys out much of the day working on the insulation project. They were supposed to have finished today, but unfortunately, they were having trouble with their spray gun and they only managed to finish one side of the house. I guess they'll be back.
It's hard to imagine the headaches of scheduling and rescheduling subs around changes in schedule and delays. We guess this is why we're paying Craftsman Design the big bucks to manage this job!

Blown-In Insulation

Today there is a crew blowing in insulation. They start by drilling holes into every wall stud cavity then they do a second pass and spray in the insulation. It's a somewhat messy process. (Though, not remotely as messy as Rose City Bungalow's experience. Be sure to scroll down and check out their basement photo.)

We're using EcoSafe Spray Foam Insulation which purports to have no ozone depleting substances and is odorless.
They also claim it helps control problems associated with moisture accumulation within the building, such as wall condensation. The insulation is weird stuff and looks like shaving cream but after only a few minutes it hardens so you can pick it up.

Note to crew for future jobs: Locate all recessed fixtures (i.e. medicine cabinets) throughout the house before commencing drilling.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Wrong Color

A very large delivery truck came out this morning to deliver our new roofing shingles. It was a neat truck that could lift the pallets right up onto the roof.

But when Sharon went out to take pictures she noticed those packages said the shingles were black. We ordered green! So, they turned around and took the pallets back off the roof and headed back to their warehouse. They'll be back in a few days with the right color. We're glad we noticed today instead of after they started installing them!

We also got a delivery of very long siding pieces.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Photogenic Day

The paint stripping team declared success on the dining room. The hardware on the bottom doors of the china cabinet built-in need to be adjusted in order for the doors to close properly. We also have some woodwork to repair. The staining team already dropped by today to get started on the wallpaper removal; the top layer peeled off real easy. Sharon doesn't miss that cherry red paint.

Outside, the CDR team built the roof for the back door. Love it!

We got paint color samples today too. Three of the colors were changed. The ceiling color was lightened up. The color for the walls of the parlor was darkened up and the color for the fireplace was also darkened up -- to dark gray. The designers obviously didn't like our choices. =)

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Paint Stripping Almost Done!

Jimmy is getting really close to finishing the dining room. He'll surely finish in the next couple of days. We're getting closer and closer to our goal of stained woodwork.

This week Craftsman Design has a subcontractor working on sheetrocking the house. He's doing a nice smooth-coated finish, to make it look like plaster; there will be no orange peel texture in this house! Though, it takes much more time to do it right. Also, CDR went through before the sheetrock was hung and made sure all the walls were plumb.

Today, the roofers finally started. The roof is too far up to get good pictures, but the house is getting that much uglier for a few days. I don't actually know when the new roof goes on; it sounds like there might be a delay and it might go on after the siding, at least on the front of the house, so the siding crew won't have to walk on the new shingles.
This is the low point as far as street appeal of our house.
They'll be having insulation blown in very soon!

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Choosing Interior Colors!

We were tasked by our contractor to choose paint colors this weekend so we must be coming up on painting soon. We started out looking at all the possible historic paint pallets we had samples for, but realized pretty quickly there was just too many choices and we suffered from information overload. So, finally we just decided to confine our choices to the Sherwin Williams Arts & Crafts Preservation Pallette as there were plenty enough choices for our project and they were labelled with the specific date range we needed.

We've already tentatively chosen cherry stain from the Jel'd Stain line for the woodwork. We haven't gotten a sample made yet and the only picture Sharon has is this crummy little thing Sharon found with a Google search. Hopefully stain samples will be coming soon.

Sharon is tempted to just paint everything yellow (her favorite house paint color), but Jeff wanted some green. And we'd probably OD on yellow, as the exterior is also going to be yellow. So, after some amount of debate, we've chosen colors. Typical for us, we will not be creating a beige box like so many people do these days. Hopefully we'll be happy with the colors, though, ultimately if some of the colors prove to be too bold, we can simply repaint them. We're probably going to go buy some paint samples and try out some of the colors in the rooms soon, just to be sure.

We've decided to use Ruskin Room Green (SW 0042) for the living room walls. Sharon found color inspiration in Paul Duchscherer's "Inside the Bungalow" book on page 39 in a great period example originally published by Eberson Paint Company.
We're going to repaint the fireplace. We dug into the paint and found the brick closely resembled this Twilight Gray (SW 0054) color. Someday we hope to "fix" the fireplace, but we just can't handle the expense this year.

We're going to paint the front parlor/library area with this
Portrait Tone (SW 0039) color on the walls. We're looking to make this a cozy reading room and Sharon drew inspiration from photos like this one from "Building Arts & Crafts Furniture" by Paul Kemner and Peggy Zdila.

The walls in the dining room and the walls of the main floor bathroom are going to be painted in this Hubbard Squash (SW 0044) color. It is likely we'll be using this color a lot in the future, in hallways and other common areas.

The kitchen (where there is little uncovered wall space) and all of the ceilings (in the living room, dining room and parlor) are going to be painted in this Buckram Binding (SW 0036) color.

Friday, May 13, 2011

Dining Room Woodwork

It's very exciting how nice this wood is going to look once it's cleaned up and stained.

The built-in china cabinet is going to be more problematic. We're probably going to end up painting the interior a color that is the closest match we can find to the stain color rather than try to strip the paint out. We've had the doors dipped and we'll be removing the shelves to clean them up too.