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Personal blatherings, living simply, gardening, cooking, canning, dehydrating, knitting, spinning and more.

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Brown Paper Flooring... The Finale

done... Done... DONE!!! Yea! I still cannot believe I am finally done-done-done! I am pooped. About 1000 sq.ft. of floor. I skipped the bathrooms. The vinyl is holding up. I would prefer tile. That is a project for another year. There is a "Grand Tour" after this blathering-bit of our home. Yes, it is eclectic in all ways. I am not very conventional.

To backtrack, we were first going to rip out the carpet, putty the seams, prime the sub-floor, then use floor paint. That is the cheapest option when one cannot afford hardwood floors. Brown Paper Flooring looks much better than painting the floor. It is softer on the feet, I think.

Here are my primary Pros and Cons for doing Brown Paper Flooring:

Pros
  • Low cost
  • Cleans up well and quickly
  • Easily "fixed" (scratches, gouges, etc.)
  • Easy to do
  • Is not filthy carpet, hiding various bugs
  • Great for those dust allergies
  • Looks good
Cons
  • Time consuming
  • Easily scratched if not cured for twice recommended 72 hours
  • Hard on the rear section when papering, even with a good pad (seat)
  • Moving all your stuff out of the way for over a week... per room
  • Putting all of your stuff back
  • Anything that you move on a regular basis needs non-scratch "bottoms"
  • Slippery, especially when wearing hand-knit wool socks. I would not wax the floor, unless you want to "ski" around the house or miffed at the husband and want to see him land on his rear on a regular basis. (The slipperiness does ease with use.)
Tip! Have a scratch... like from a small dog jumping on and off the furniture and she still is not used to a bare floor? Keep a small can of the stain, (if you stained the paper), dip a q-tip into the stain and rub on the scratch. Let sit a moment, then wipe and buff with a old cotton rag (like a diaper). Looks like you did nothing to the scratch. Walk away. Look at it about half of hour later. Hard to find, now! It is really weird. Sally's scratches did not go through the Varathane, yet left light marks like the stain was scratched. If there is a gouge in the Varathane, use the fine-side of a nail file and give it a swipe or two, wipe with a damp rag and then a dry rag. With a small craft paintbrush, swipe a coat or 3 of Varathane over, (I put some in a jar to have on hand... mark what is in the jar!), and Wah-Laa!, all good.

Enough. Here is our home (click on photos to enlarge):

This is our bedroom. The spinning wheel is an Alden Amos Canadian Production wheel. A beauty, no?

Those boxes on iron bases? File cabinets! Cool, huh? I cannot remember where I found those decades ago.

I am using an old sheepskin at the base of Sally's stairs to the bed. She slips, otherwise, when getting onto or off the stairs.

This is part of the spare room floor. I did not catch the whole area when taking the photo. I really need a bedskirt or real bedspread that goes to the floor on the bed in this room and our bedroom. You cannot see the frame. That is on purpose because it is not "purty". We built it from 4x4s and 2x4s, ditching the box springs and putting 1x3s across to support the mattress. It is comfortable and does not collapse like the old metal base used to do if you sat on the corner.

The craft room does not have much floor space, being filled to the ceiling with my various craft supplies. That crate-mattress to the right that I accidentally caught in the photo will become new pads for Miss Sally for the car (console pad and a backseat pad). No... she is not spoiled... much.

Himself "fixed" (cleaned) my great-auntie's sewing machine. It was filthy from years of being in storage. Once cleaned, it purrs. It is a 1960-something Singer. Real metal! I will be using it to (finally) get curtains made for the house this winter. It has only been 5 years since we moved in...

This is the kitchen. I detest that honking, ugly microwave. It works and handy when I need to soften butter with a quickness. The little bookcase holding some of my cookbooks is almost as old as I am. It may be older. I am not sure. It was my mom's. I was glad I got to hang onto it. It is well-made and sturdy.

The dining area. Cool table set, huh? Sadly, the top is splitting. The top is small tree limbs sawed in half, finely sanded and then somehow joined (glued?) and sealed. The woodworker told us how to fix it, instead of offering to replace the top that was 6 months old when it started splitting. We are not woodworkers. We will not be buying any more of his items. Too bad, our boot bench and canning shelf unit are really cool and holding up nicely. We would of bought more items as we could if he stood by his work. Sad...  I will look for a cool top, like a solid piece of burl or similar slab of wood and replace the whole thing. That is something I can do.

This is the front room, looking towards the kitchen. Like my fancy flannel sheet to cover the futon? NEVER buy a futon couch, no matter how cool it is. Once the mattress is worn, you cannot replace just the worn part. The whole thing has to be replaced. Finding the foam to make proper couch cushions was a booger. It will cost a third of what we paid for the futon for the proper sort of couch cushions, not including the covers. sigh... Something else to save up for. Still, it works, so to speak.

Sally sleeps on the rug we put under the couch. That wedge-thing is something I got for myself to keep me upright when I got home from having surgery a couple of years ago. Sally loves sitting on top of it, looking out the kitchen or front room window from her perch.

And finally...

The front room, looking the other way. I painted the insides of the bookcases. The one to the left is oak, not a dark wood, yet it was rather much with darker flooring. You only see one of the big ones to the right. My mom-in-law and father-in-law built them decades ago. They had first stained them dark black walnut. Everything in their house was stained dark. Eventually, they started refinishing various pieces. The bookcases still had dark interiors. With the darker floor, the bookcases became a looming, mass of darkness. Painting the insides white, it makes them look brighter and reflects the light much nicer. Yeah, I know, I have a lot of books and stuff inside them. I put 6 book boxes away in the shed, too!

The "strings" hanging down from the table-thingy off the couch is a deconstructed cheap rag rug. I am sewing the ends together and will crochet or knit a thick rug to go under a dutch oven I have in a corner. My kitchen cupboards are filled to the brim. The oven is a lovely thing in cast-iron, so why not be decorative and useful, without gouging the floor with its weight?

The tiny castle wheel was a used bookstore find. It works well, though I rather use my AA wheel when spinning.

And that is it.

Though I am not big on dark floors, (unstained would be a little lighter), I really do like the new "flooring" and the stain color. It does match local spiders, yet we can still see them if they venture in. We did NOT miss the 2 huge wolf spiders that decided my wool stored under the tarps were the ideal home. (shudder) You do not smash a spider the size of a half-cent piece. You shoot it. Or shake it out into a heavily wooded part of the property, which we did. I preferred to not wash spider goo out of the wool. I unpacked all of my craft room stuff slowly, looking for more of those nasty things. We found 3 frogs and 1 toad under the tarps outside when we started to fold them up. All were relocated to various parts of the garden. We are amazed none were squished when we walked on the tarps while loading my stuff into the truck. (We drove it around to the other side of the house and brought it directly into the craft room instead of walking back and forth through the house.)

I am already designing the rugs to make. At least two of them will be locker-hooked with some of my wool I have stashed. I am thinking- gray-base with dyed wools for the designs in greens, blues, and maybe small bits of purple, gold, browns and red. Or... I have to color in the design and stare at it a bit before I am sure. That is for the rectangular one to cover the spot for access to the water heater if it has to be changed out. I think I will make a circular one for the middle of the front room. I can do that one in two or four sections and sew it together, making it easier to manage. It needs to be about 5' 6" diameter. Yes, I will bore all with photos of those as I get them done.

The furnace registers, or covers, were white. We got metal spray paint in a hammered brownish color, going towards a slight bronze and painted them. They look rather nice, I think. When pricing replacements, they are fantastic. New covers are expensive.

The curtains in the spare bedroom and our bedroom will be the fronts of quilts my great-grammie made and never finished. The rest of the house will get a slightly off-white muslin. They will be double-thickness. I am not sure if I will use flannel for the backs or use all muslin. It is hard to find flannel not made in China. Chinese flannel pills if you look at it for more than two seconds and is rather poorly made.

I am going to have a busy Winter, following a busy Fall canning stuff from the garden. I just cannot sit still, it seems. I should take a few days off, after digging potatoes and such this week. Maybe...
 :
This post is LinkedIn with:
Frugal Days Sustainable Ways #89

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