We have a ceiling in the hallway! It’s all very exciting. I mean, it looks like this, but still. It’s an improvement.
It might be finished by the end of the week?
We’re also having the walls skim coated! Signature Look Painting and Decorating did some painting for us back when I was pregnant with Calvin and not all that interested in climbing ladders, and they’ve since expanded their services to offer wall prep (like skim coating) and wallpaper installation. We’ve hired them to do the wall from the back door up to the second floor, knocking down the texture, fixing some soft spots where the plaster has begun to pull away from the lathe, and then repairing and resurfacing everything for nice, smooth walls.
Blech. Don’t judge that back stairway too harshly — it’s what we inherited when we bought the house. So glad to finally be giving it some attention! Picture the walls all smoothed out and painted a creamy white, black stairs with white risers, white trim, and that antelope print runner.
A whole lot of sanding is about to happen which means that there’s about to be a fine layer of dust, oh, everywhere, and any painting downstairs is on hold. Meanwhile, I’ve been working away on the third floor and my goal is to finish that by next week. The doors on the first and second floors all have Victorian hardware — skinny brass back plates and ornate details. I don’t think it’s all original because there is some variation, but the differences are slight and not something you would pick up on unless you were actively looking for it.
The third floor? Yeah, not so much. Every door is different in finish, size, style, and hardware.
That last one with the Victorian back plate and black porcelain knob, was a first attempt at improving the situation. It was a decent match to the rest of the house, but oddly, it didn’t feel right. The third floor of our home was originally an unfinished attic when the house was built in the late 1800s, and I believe it was finished when the house was converted from a single-family home into a 3-flat during the Great Depression. The attic space was used well, but the trim is not as detailed and all of the overall proportions are different (lower ceilings, smaller rooms, narrow trim, shorter doorways, tighter hallway, etc.).
Bringing the top floor hallway into my One Room Challenge design means a lot of painting and swapping out some lights, but mostly it’s all about getting those doors right. White trim and black doors will match what we’re doing throughout the second floor. The knobs will be a nod to those found downstairs too, but instead of long back plates, I chose round rosettes with a rope detail. They’re a better size and shape, and the rope is a nod to the rope and tassel sconces that are going to line the second floor hall.
The new mortises are all about 1/4″ bigger than the old ones, but I used a drill with a spade bit to make the opening bigger, and a hammer and chisel for the faceplate. I’ve been filling holes with wood putty and building up some of the bigger chunks that are missing with wood epoxy.
Here’s what needs to be finished by next week’s update to keep us on track.
• Hired out: The new ceiling in the second floor hallway should be done. Skim coating should be in progress or nearing completion.
• Me and Brandon: The third floor should be completely done; I need to finish repairing the doors, prime, and paint them, and install hardware. Patch a few holes, then paint the trim, ceiling, and walls, and finally, install new lights. The trim and doors in the second floor should be sanded and prepped for painting. The carpeting on both the front and back stairs needs to be pulled, and the stairs should be repaired and prepped for painting. The stairs from the basement up to the second floor are keeping their carpeting as a drop cloth until the skim coating is done, and hopefully those will come up soon too.
So… I should have a big update of all the work that’s been done by week 4? Oh, let us hope.
Follow along with the One Room Challenge participants!
• Jana Bek • Chris Loves Julia • Shannon Claire • Coco.Kelley • The Curated House • Driven by Décor • The English Room • From the Right Bank • Sherry Hart • Hi Sugarplum • House of Jade • Hunted Interior • The Makerista • Making it Lovely • Marcus Design • Pencil & Paper Co. • Megan Pflug • Place of My Taste • Suburban B’s • Waiting on Martha • Media Partner House Beautiful • TM by CIH