Ever so lovely textured paint over original plaster

1917bungalowMay 6, 2013

My FIL purchased his 1917 mill village bungalow from the original owner in 1973. In the 10 years that followed, he and my MIL made some...improvements? One of which includes adding craptastic textured paint over the original plaster walls to "hide cracks." They divorced and the home has been left fairly untouched aside from a second llayer of linoleum on the kitchen floor (over original wood) and bathroom rearrangement with epoxied floor...

Now that my husband and I are considering purchasing the home, I must decide the best and most cost effective solution. The easiest would be to repair all the cracks that have NEVER been touched and recover with my own layer of textured paint. If time and money were no issue, I would attempt to remove the textured paint, joint compound the cracks, paint, and go about my merry way.

I have included a photo of the worst "cracks." The rest are more along the hairline variety.

I am committed to keeping as much of the original integrity of the home as possible, even if that means butting heads with my husband whom was raised in the home. lol I think even he is surprised by how much emotional attachment he has to certain things, even ripping up the red and blue shag carpeting from the bedroom he shared with his brother. Do I even need to mention that my MIL NAILED the carpet and padding on top of another layer of carpeting that was lying on original wood floors with a 3" border of white paint around the room?

All practical advice is greatly appreciated. Please understand that we are having to do little things here and there until we sell our home. If I do attempt to strip the textured paint off the plaster, will I create a bigger mess than I already have? Is there a high risk of running into asbestos from the textured paint?

I suppose I am ok with fixing the cracks and even adding another layer of textured paint if I'm not completely disrespecting the home. We really need to get the home move-in ready so that we can get our's sold.

Thank you so much! Go easy on me. I truly am here to learn. :)

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Oh wow, is this a familiar story. We bought my in-laws home too and they had added that sand textured paint (and more than one type!) to cover cracks on some walls and not others. We did not try to remove it. We did sand some of it. We patched the cracks and then we skim coated entire walls with prepared joint compound. It takes multiple thin coats. Sanded that smooth, primed and painted. It is messy and dusty, but if you do a good job of crack repair the process lasts a long time and we were able to integrate the untouched walls with the screwed-up textured ones. We think the end result is original enough. Hope this helps. You are not alone!

    Bookmark   May 6, 2013 at 4:14PM
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Aaahhhhh! I hadn't even thought of doing that. Thank you!

The reason I even considered adding another layer of textured paint was because one of the three boys (my FIL, my husband, or his brother) had attempted to patch holes in various walls, leaving noticeable patches of spackle through out the house. It looks like little pieces of toilet paper dotted on a man's face after shaving. LOL

Thank you for the encouragement! I need all I can get at this point. ;)

    Bookmark   May 6, 2013 at 11:34PM
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I talked to my MIL tonight and found out that the texture is nothing more than sand mixed with paint. I know it sounds silly, but I was actually a little concerned about the texture containing asbestos (I've been Googling way too much) so that alleviates a little anxiety. :)

    Bookmark   May 7, 2013 at 10:35PM
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Perhaps you cold find a real plaster guy (common around here, but I don't know where you are) and have him skim coat over the texture with plaster. No sanding involved and a smooth flat surface good for the next 100 years. Much nicer wall surface than using joint compound.

    Bookmark   May 8, 2013 at 10:10AM
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rwiegand, I so wish we could afford to do that. I fear, though, there will be more important factors to drain our pockets - plumbing and electricity for two. :) This will definitely be a gradual labor of love, but I have 2 requirements before we move in: carpets ripped up and the walls fixed/painted.

I still haven't decided what to do. We'd like to get in the house as soon as possible so we can prepare ours for sale. I'm a little intimidated by doing the skim coating myself but I really do not like the textured walls. Maybe had they been done properly, it wouldn't be so bad, but there are areas of lots of sandy texture right beside areas of hardly any at all. It's uneven and there's quite a few screw-type holes and hairline cracks to repair anyway.

I know it's not really a big deal in the grand scheme of life but I just really don't know what to do. My husband just wants to go over the texture with more texture so that may be what we end up doing... :(

    Bookmark   June 12, 2013 at 3:08PM
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If the plaster is loose from the lathe, then use plaster washers along the cracks first to secure it. Use drywall mesh to cover the washers....as long a piece as you need. To cover it, use joint compound or this sandy texture you're using.

I can't remember where I got mine from, however doing a search, I see Amazon has them.

Here is a link that might be useful: P;aster washers

    Bookmark   June 12, 2013 at 5:31PM
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Thank you for the tip. Terry! So far, all but the above pictured spot seems to be secure and of the "hairline" variety. I'm sure as I really get in there, my findings may be a bit different.

After doing quite a bit more research, I've 99% decided to try my hand at skim coating the existing, sand-textured surface. I have read that a "Magic Trowel" will make this a little less daunting, so have added this item to my list.

From what I can read, premixed joint compound is evil, Durabond is good if you know what you're doing, and Easysand is ok if you don't know how to use Durabond. I've also read on some forums of some sort of bonding agent - Weldwood I believe?

My 2 goals are to cover up the sand texture and repair cracks/nail holes. I don't care if it's completely, drywall smooth but the texture has to go. (I actually love the look of the polished look of the "Venetian plaster" technique but am not attempting that.)

Can you please help me form a plan of action? I'm afraid I've honestly read too much information and now I think I'm more confused than I was to begin with.

1. Is there a better option that Easysand for a complete novice such as myself?
2. Do I prime the walls before adding any type of skim coat product?
3. Do I need to add a bonding agent after priming, if priming is needed?
4. Isn't there one type of JC I need to add as the first coat, and then the other 2 coats are a different, finishing JC?
5. Do I add tape to all cracks? If so, do I do anything special to the tapes areas before skim coating the walls with the first later?
6. Are all tapes created equally? Which is best?

I do appreciate your helping this newbie get started. :)

This post was edited by 1917bungalow on Sat, Jun 15, 13 at 8:03

    Bookmark   June 15, 2013 at 8:00AM
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I just found this link that seems to spell it out for me a little better than piecing it all together did for me. I'm still not sure what type of JC to use or if it will even really matter. :)

Here is a link that might be useful: How to Skim Coat

    Bookmark   June 15, 2013 at 10:42AM
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Another great link for anyone that may have read this thread in search of help repairing plaster walls:

Here is a link that might be useful: How to Fix Plaster Walls (Step by Step)

    Bookmark   June 15, 2013 at 11:27PM
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Hi, sorry it took me so long to get to you!

First off, you need to get off as much of that sand texture as you can. I used my trusty palm sander for that task. We have 2 of them, so we could both sand at the same time. The ceiling was the hardest by far. We used a wet dry vac to vacuum the walls afterwards and I remember going over it with a rag also, slightly damp. We used Durabond 90....because that's what the carpenter that I was using for a few other things in here was using. The 90 means you have 90 minutes to work with it before it sets up. You only need one product. He let us borrow that thingmabob that you hook to your drill to stir it up. I had been watching him mix up his Durabond when he did our bedroom ceiling and the foyer ceiling, so I was pretty sure on the amount of water to use....however he happened to be here when we were starting, so my husband asked for his assistance to get us going. :) I have, over the years, bought different putty knives, so that's what we used. I think they're 4". No fancy whatever they're called that the pro's use in the corners either! I'd also sat and watched the carpenter do a wall in our bedroom that needed repair (before I knew I was so talented ;p), he sorta went that way and this way, not really vertical, let dry, then horizontally, let dry....I think your link said sanding in between. It really wasn't hard. My husband had a lot of problems because he was being way too picky...and I'm the picky one...lol! You can't be, you slap it up, work it with the putty knife and move on. I hope that makes sense? We used no bonding agent. We only primed the walls after we had skimmed coated. Then we went over the walls (and in our case the ceiling) with a fine tooth comb, looking for spots we had missed or tiny pinholes that are prevalent in joint compound. We did find spots we'd missed, in our case you could see faint circles, so I redid those areas until I couldn't see them any longer. Then I re-primed that area only.

I don't agree with the second links description of how the plaster washers "stick out from the walls". I guess you just have to take my word for it. They're designed to go flat against your wall. It also said something about how you don't want it to go into the wood? Did I read that right? Mine went into the lathe, if it didn't, I pulled the screw out and made sure it went into the lathe. I also used drywall screws, thanks to my carpenter. He gave me a box. As far as the tape, I wouldn't use the tape. I used the mesh. It's sticky, stays on the wall while you're getting your mud. Perfect for the novice! Our bathroom has tiny hairline cracks in it. i didn't think they would show. I was wrong. I think I would put the mesh over the hairline cracks and go over with joint compound. I guess it depends on how many, how close they are, as to how you'd put the mesh on. Cover a crack, start your skim coating, come to another crack, put another piece of mesh on that one. If the walls are nothing but hairline cracks, I'm going to give you a link of another product you might look into. I used this in our parlor, foyer, the alcove upstairs and down the hallway upstairs.

Oh, I also wanted to say that how they decided to do it, instead of using the plaster washers? Looks like so much more work! I don't get it. And then they end up using fender washers, then once their glue was dry, they removed them...I don't get it. I think they didn't screw their plaster washers in right. Like I said, mine went flat, or almost. It's not noticeable at all where they are. At all.

I've also never heard the pre-mixed joint compound was evil. I've used it and felt it worked equally to the Durabond. So I don't know!

If I haven't answered all your questions, ask more....

Here is a link that might be useful: Nu Wal

    Bookmark   June 16, 2013 at 9:19PM
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Hi, Terry! I am so glad you responded. The part about the screw not going into the lath just didn't make sense to me, either. I even asked my husband where he thought the screw should go, and he immediately said, "into the wood." Thank goodness we're not completely crazy. ;)

Your post is extremely helpful. It's great to hear from a "real person" that's been through the same thing. I'd post room pictures, but you guys would think we were insane. LOL

    Bookmark   June 16, 2013 at 9:38PM
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If the keys are broke away from the lathe and you want to secure it again to lathe, it just makes sense to screw the plaster washers into the lathe...lol

I guess my next best advise is know what you're getting into. Really look around, take inventory of all that needs to be done before you invest. I saw what my eyes wanted to see. We were moving home from a 17 month stay in TN (job related). My camera was in storage, my hubby still in TN finishing up for the company. I wish my hubby, or any of the people I drug through here would have asked me if I was really looking at the kitchen, the bathrooms, all the wallpaper, the carpeting....the woodwork that was painted when most was natural....the furnace that was a Chrysler? and who knows how old...the ductwork that was rusted through...the lack of central air or any air for that matter. The lack of insullation. The lack of a vent for the dryer. The sheer size of this house and the cost to heat and cool it. The roof was really old....like you, textured walls in some rooms....servant stairs were covered, foyer ceiling whoopy dippy with stalagmites hanging from it. Every light fixture needed replacing....if ya want, I've got a lot more... :-)

I wish I had pictures to show you how insane I was to talk my hubby into buying this house!! LOL

    Bookmark   June 17, 2013 at 6:31PM
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I looked at my husband yesterday and asked for the thousandth time, "We're idiots, right?" lol!

Since his dad has owned the house for the last 40 years, we know quite a bit concerning what's been done, needs to be done, should've been done and never got done. That's a good thing and a bad thing. I've been better at looking at the house subjectively whereas my husband seems to look at it through rose colored, emotion-filled glasses. Thankfully, the more we dig in, the more he sees the work that needs to be done. ;)

We're fortunate in that we can still live in our current home while working on the other, and if push came to shove, we could spend the night over there if it got too late. Keeping the 4 year old from "helping" every step of the way takes a bit of creativity...;)

It's a smaller, modest, non-craftsman bungalow home in a 100 year old mill village. The appraiser came last week and should have his report sometime this week, letting us move forward on that end. I've really just been researching how-tos and shouldn't-dos up to this point.

I started stripping one of the doors yesterday although DH thinks I'm crazy for it. The wide, wood trim is all original, minus a few of the 6" baseboards where they just put up a board instead of an actual routered baseboard. It has all been painted 4008938029 times, with chips and gouges. There's no way I can just paint over that, and honestly, I'm curious to see what the wood really looks like. Curiosity killed the cat!

Does this gorgeous texture look familiar? lol

    Bookmark   June 18, 2013 at 2:49AM
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Oh hey! Now yours looks like that knock down texture so prevalent in the south. You really wanna see mine?? Okey dokey....

    Bookmark   June 18, 2013 at 4:13PM
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and this.....

    Bookmark   June 18, 2013 at 4:15PM
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I'm glad you're seeing the house as it truly is. Sounds like you've got youth on your side too! :-) and I don't mean your 4 yr old....lol...

I know I thought I only had to remove the cabinets in the kitchen and take down that gawd-awful 2' soffit.....only to discover that the cabinets had been put onto crumbling plaster, the area you saw had drywall over that crumbling plaster. Ceiling was drywall over plaster, with copper tubing in between. And that soffit? It held the duct for the vent over the stove top....across the entire wall, into the half bath and out. I had no choice but to gut both rooms. Half bath ended up being wood on the bottom half of the walls, plywood walls, thick plywood that was put up with looooooong nails, top half was that lovely marlite some previous homeowner must have gotten a heck of deal on!! He tried to shove insulation down between the studs, after he'd put up the thick plywood, ya know, an after thought, however, it didn't even go down a foot. Stamp that as a FAIL!! The guy loved his 16 penny nails...that I know...

That sandy texture is the same stuff that's outside on the brick foundation, and is also in the basement on the brick down there. On some of the brick down there. It's now crumbling off the bricks outside and in the basement. Couldn't have been doing it 8 yrs ago...then again, I wouldn't have paid any attention to it because I only saw what I wanted to see.

This house couldn't legally be sold, because it only had a 60 amp electric box outside. For whatever reason, our Realtor tried to get us to pay for the upgrade, but I said that wasn't our responsibility, it was the sellers. I should have run then. All knob and tube in here. My electrician upgraded what he could without tearing out any walls. Took out the fuse box and installed an actual breaker box in the basement. Fuse box was in the attic. Again, I should have ran. Grounded wires are really important for your electronics, your appliances, etc. Some of ours are grounded, some are not. sigh. I ended up having to gut some rooms/areas, so those were totally redone with this centuries electrical :)The plumbing had some copper, no PVC. A lot of cast iron. More than 1 person told me to change it because that stuff rusts from the inside out, it's not of matter of will it, it's when. Do you think I could get my plumber to change it all out? No. He did some, not all. So we still have cast iron pipes down in the basement. Our town recently came out with an information letter stating that some homes water have tested positive for lead in it. They say because of the cast iron. I dunno. I do know that I do what they state, let the water run for 1 minute before I use it for anything, even giving my dogs more water. yeesh.

Like you, this house really hadn't had a lot of stuff done to it. If anything was done, it was more cosmetic and could be undone. The important stuff wasn't done. Like making sure the foundation was crumbling. That the house wasn't sinking into itself. We have windows that keep breaking, I think because the house keeps sinking into itself...we don't have that kind of cash to sink into it.

She's a beautiful house. A ton of character. My husband got the paper this morning and told me that another board on the front porch was rotten. We have to fix that. I'll go ahead and attach a picture of her too. Oh yeah, I love to garden ;-)

    Bookmark   June 18, 2013 at 4:56PM
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If curiosity killed the cat, I'm dead 1000's times over!! With that in mind...I forgot....our kitchen, 1/2 bath and the full bathroom didn't have original baseboards. There was a section, really small section, next to the fireplace, where the top fancy piece of the baseboard wasn't attached to the bottom board. I had no idea it wasn't all one board. Who knew. That bottom board was just a 1x6. Sooooo....since I don't know anyone who can remake that fancy top, and we're talking just the kitchen, I had the carpenter I was using install 1x6's. I almost had him router the top edge, so it was a little rounded, then I thought again. You know how kitchens back then were not fancy at all. I like it and I've gotten a lot of compliments on it. Course then yrs later, I went to Menards and saw an EXACT match to the baseboards upstairs. That figures, oh well. Up there I just left what they had around the door and window, but changed the baseboard up there and down here. It sort of looks like the baseboards upstairs, except it's a lot shorter. I've got a catalog around here somewhere where you can buy trim. I'm not sure about baseboards. I'll look around for it.

If anyone ever tells you that I'm long winded, just nod in agreement O_O

    Bookmark   June 18, 2013 at 5:12PM
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I do long winded, too! ;)

I don't know about the whole "youth on our side" thing. I suppose it's a matter of perspective. lol My husband and I will be 40 and 37 this year, respectively. The 4 year old certainly keeps me feeling young, though! Well...most days.

At least she's good for free labor! ;)

Behind the 2 layers of wallpaper is a sheet of thin paneling nailed into the original plaster walls. We're praying it "just" nailed and not glued, too. I'm actually digging the green paint on the plaster, but DH not so much. My inlaws were just the second owners of this 1917 house and the paneling was there when they bought the house. My MIL put the first layer of wallpaper of the paneling and there's just no telling how long the green has been on those walls!

They converted the attic into a room and installed the stairs and the carpet over 30 years ago. It shall be pulled up very soon. lol The only thing that really worries me now are the square ceiling tiles. I'm tempted to just cover them with pretty wood planks, or at least the stuff that looks like pretty wood planks.

The kitchen floors have 2 layers of vinyl - one solid sheet and then tiles over top of that. THANKFULLY, those are adhered to sheets of particle board which were nailed into the original wood floors. We can pull up the particle board and both layers of vinyl come right up with it.

    Bookmark   June 19, 2013 at 4:54AM
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I just love your home! Isn't it funny how we women can fall in love with what something can be while completely ignoring what it really is? I think it's part of our charm.

You're absolutely right! My walls look like the knockdown/popcorn ceilings so many contractors use down here. As a matter of fact, that's what I thought it was and was going to have it tested for Asbestos until my MIL said it was just sand. She remembered pouring the sand into a bucket of paint before painting the walls. lol

Today I worked on a little bit of the bedroom wall in between stripping off 3 or 4 layers of thick paint from one of the doors. I ended up wetting part of the wall and scraping it off. It worked fairly well, but oh me oh my, how monotonous. Of course, Munchkin wants to help, so she had squirt bottle duty and then had to leave the room while I scraped.

You might can see the difference in smoothness in this photo. The original texture is in the bottom right corner, with the smoother, scraped wall up toward the upper left corner.

    Bookmark   June 19, 2013 at 5:01AM
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Your kitchen sounds like a job and a half! There were NO cabinets when my inlaws moved in, so what we have is just 40-ish years old. There aren't many, and what we do have will have to come out. What makes our kitchen so challenging are the steps (seen in the photo above with Munchkin) coming down. The stove and refrigerator are positioned under the stairs with the sink on the opposite wall. Let me see if I have a picture...

Of course I do! lol When my FIL moved out, he left everything, which is why there are dishes on the counter. ;) The dryer was originally in the pantry to the right of the sink. We plan to move the washer/dryer to the inclosed back porch to the left of the sink. The layout is strange and I'm not sure where to put our table, but I'll figure it out.

I think I may need to start a blog to keep up with all of this instead of boring people to death on here. lol

    Bookmark   June 19, 2013 at 5:14AM
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For anyone interested, I have started a Flickr account to post my pictures to.

Here is a link that might be useful: More Pictures of our Project

    Bookmark   June 19, 2013 at 6:42AM
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The part about the screw not going into the lath just didn't make sense to me

As I read it, they said stop the drilled holes short of the lathe so the power grab smushes around in front of the lathe instead of going past it. They didn't say the screws shouldn't go into the lathe.

    Bookmark   June 19, 2013 at 10:37AM
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1917bungalow and terryr, you're not boring! We all have trials and tribulations with our houses. Your "rants" give the rest of us the courage we need to persevere with our own projects. I look at your pictures and remember what our house looked like a year ago. When I look around now, I see what a lot of hard work can achieve and am happy with our results; even though this place is nowhere near finished.

As for the moon cratered, textured paint.... there is a line going on around here that this was an upgrade for turn-of-the-century homes. I'm not sure if this is true, but I'm going to stick with that line and leave my walls alone. The rotting windows are a much higher priority this summer.

Good luck both of you and keep on posting!

    Bookmark   June 19, 2013 at 2:58PM
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Oh, I forgot. 1917bungalow, before you demo your kitchen, ask here and in the kitchen forum. You have some stuff to work with, especially if funds are tight. I thought I was going to do a gut job on mine, but after my realtor said for the umpteenth time not to spend a whole lot of money on the house, that idea went out the window. It took being creative, but I like what I have now.

Are you using citristrip on your doors? I had great results by slathering the stuff on, covering it with plastic wrap for a few hours, scraping with a one inch putty knife and then washing with water. Just enough water to clean up the goo using a plastic scrubby, not enough to raise the grain much. The final step was using denatured alcohol and oooo steel wool. I also liked using the heat gun and then the citristrip. It turned out to be a simple pine door, but it's hundred year old pine with great graining. I love the final result after four coats of shellac.

What's that in your fireplace? it looks neat.

This post was edited by maryinthefalls on Wed, Jun 19, 13 at 19:02

    Bookmark   June 19, 2013 at 4:30PM
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Hi weedy, the way I read what they said, was to not screw the screw into the lathe. You don't want the plaster washer going anywhere near the lathe, it flattens out on top of the plaster. They sure had me confused.

Mary, thank you for your kind words! I wish I had before pictures and you all didn't have to rely on what's in my minds eye. I have a lot of after pictures, just hardly any before. When I was wiping down woodwork, before we really started doing anything, I found wallpaper still attached. So I know that at least in 2 rooms here, this sandy texture is over wallpaper!! The previous owner put in the vinyl windows and did the vinyl siding here. All of it the cheapest she could buy. The windows leak...negates the purpose of vinyl double hung windows....siding doesn't have proper "wrap" under it. Up in the gables, there where I had it painted navy? She had baby blue vinyl siding. We had a new roof put on and I begged the roofer to zip off that "stuff". I was positive there was some really cool original siding under that baby blue crap. And I was right! Original half cove siding! Yay!!

Aww! Thank you! I know I have a before of the house...somewhere. The outside. You're making headway on the sandy texture. How many more walls to go?? LOL
The kitchen cabinets here were stock Menards pine cabinets. The sink cabinet was really a 2 door, with a drawer on top cabinet that was jerry-rigged into a sink cabinet by taking the drawer out, busting out the drawer, taking the faceplate off the drawer and nailing it back into place. There's a fireplace for a woodburner in the kitchen that was plastered over at some time. Whomever took a cabinet and cut it out in the back to go around the chimney. That sink cabinet had no floor in it. No clue if someone just busted it out or what the deal was with that. They were stained but had never been varnished. Just lovely. A girls dream come true!! There was a wall oven, so tiny, you couldn't fit a standard size cookie sheet in it. And old, O M GEE was it old!! The electricians were here, so they were taking that and the counter-top stove top out. One of the electricians starts cussing to high heaven, something about people wonder why their houses burn down and get over here...I go over to see what all his fuss is about. He's removing the wall oven....it's 3 prong cord is plugged into a 2 prong extension cord, that's plugged into an adapter that's plugged into the 2 plug wall outlet. I told him I didn't do it, don't cuss at me! This is a small town, everyone knows everyone...I've known this guy forever....so it wasn't a big deal him cussing :-) It was amazing the house was still standing. There's 2 windows, the half bath, door going outside, doorway to dining room, basement door and doorway to servant steps all in the kitchen. Lots of doors/doorways/windows to work around. Needless to say it's not an eat-in kitchen. We have a dining room with my 1900 oak pedestal table in it. Amazingly I've always loved antiques, long before we lived here! My sister sold antiques for awhile and was able to get me one of those old enameled porcelain kitchen tables. The top is white, rest is black. I use it as an island. It works, course half the time I think the kitchen is too small now. And if I would have left the servant stairs closed off, imagine the cabinet space I could have had!! You said you had a pantry. boo. My half bath off the kitchen is/was a butlers pantry. I almost put it back, however, only 1 bath in this size house? I can't imagine. Our daughter thinks it's bad enough that it's only 1 full bath.
Your doors are our doors. I can't think of the name of that trim piece on top of the windows, doors, etc. The fancy piece. I'm blank. We have that, except in the dining room and I'm missing some in the kitchen. Don't know why, don't know where to get some or who to have make some.
Why are the stairs in the kitchen? My thoughts are all over today, so please forgive...lol...I had just a little paneling in the kitchen, only held up by nails. What was scary was when I pulled it down. A normal person would go buy a piece of drywall and cut it to fit the places where the plaster had fallen off the wall. Not my past homeowner!! Oh no!! He used what he had on handy. A piece of wood, some cloth, then he didn't use plaster or joint compound to hold it all in. Oh heavens no! Must have been craft week here in this big ole house, as what he had on hand was plaster of paris. That stuff dries hard....lol. You know what was my favorite tool? It's called a drill hammer. I loved it. Way bigger than a hammer...and you know size really does matter....lol.... ;-)

I was thinking I had pictures of the kitchen on here...after pictures of course because my camera was in storage...but they must be on my desktop. BTW....my name is Terry, what's yours...if you don't mind me asking?? :-)

    Bookmark   June 19, 2013 at 5:15PM
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Mary, you got me thinking....I understand what you're saying about the kitchen and why...here's my story though....I had to gut my kitchen, the plaster was too far gone. After I had gut it and put up the insulation, I had my carpenter come in to do the drywall...I don't do drywall :-) Before he started, the plumber was here too and the 2 started talking amongst themselves....I inserted myself into their conversation, with a HEY! What're ya talking about?? They told me that the ceiling joist/2nd floor joists had sagged because way back when the wall for the bathroom had been created. I had a....can't remember now how much it weighed....but I had bought a cast iron claw foot tub to go into the bathroom directly above the kitchen. I don't know how many joists needed to be lifted and leveled individually, with a 1x8 sistered onto the already 1x6 joist. Sometimes I only required the why of what he was doing (I'd already opened up the window and was throwing money out). If that hadn't been done...my heavy tub and me might have landed in the kitchen by now....lol...

    Bookmark   June 19, 2013 at 5:52PM
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okay, In my haste to talk about houses, I didn't tell you what a doll your daughter is!! Shame on me!

    Bookmark   June 19, 2013 at 8:22PM
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*waves to Terry, Mary, and Weedy* :)

Why, thank you. She's my sunshine!

Why are there stairs in the kitchen? (and why is there carpet on them?!) Well...um...err...hmmm...they couldn't fit them in the bathroom? lol! I guess when they converted the attic into livable space, that was the only place they could think to put them. I understand the logic, and am grateful for the space upstairs, but I honest-to-goodness don't know how to work this kitchen!

As I mentioned before, there was just a sink jutting out from the wall when my inlaws bought the house in 1972. There were no cabinets, and I'm not sure if there was a stove or not. Since they purchased it from the original owners, I wonder if that means the house never had cabinets? Anyway, my MIL said she bought the cabinets you see with Bingo earnings. hehe

I don't intend to immediately rip out the cabinets BUT I will have to rip out the one above where the refrigerator goes. Well, either that or buy a short fridge. Once you take out that cabinet, 1/3 of my uppers will be gone. The sink base cabinet has a bit of rotting, and honestly, they're all going to have to go at some point.

We plan to rip up vinyl/linoleum/particle board in a couple weeks. I asked DH what he intended to do if the base cabs are sitting on top of what we're ripping up and all he'd say was, "let's just hope it's not." The cabinet beside the stove was added 10 years or so ago and isn't attached to anything, so it won't be an issue. The sink cabinet very well may be sitting on top of the vinyl.

I have considered finishing the pantry, throwing in a couple metal "Gorilla" shelves for food and appliances, and then removing the cabinets. For a sink, I could use a laundry sink until we're finished. lol That would give me room to pull off the paneling and figure out what to do about the ceiling tiles. I guess I should have them tested for asbestos?

The only counter space I have is there beside the sink and beside the stove. I guess I can be the troll under the stairs...ha! I'd love to have a skinny (24") table/island but I worry it may make everything feel too closed in.

The kitchen itself is right at 13 feet wide from sink wall to stove wall. I've not measured the length because I can't even begin to figure out exactly where the kitchen ends. Is it at the end of the stairs? The wall adjacent wall? If it's where the stairs end, then there's no room for my table. If it's to the adjacent wall, then my table will be there at DD's bedroom and/or bathroom. Lovely. lol!

Speaking of bathroom, did you see how the shower/tub enclosure was added in front of the window? We plan to eventually take out that tub enclosure and put a pretty tub back under the window. I'd like to move the toilet to the wall where the tub enclosure is now and then put in double sinks on the sink wall.

THEN, if we can figure it out and have the money, I'd like to put a send bathroom upstairs in the attic.

But first, the floors and walls. ;)

I know I don't have to figure it all out right now, but I'm a planner. That's half the fun for me!

This post was edited by 1917bungalow on Thu, Jun 20, 13 at 1:09

    Bookmark   June 20, 2013 at 1:07AM
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Mary, I am using Citrstrip. Thank you so much for the suggestion to cover it with plastic! Don't laugh, but did you just lay it over top? lol

The think in the fireplace is a big, honkin' wood stove that needs to GO. A couple years ago when my FIL had a metal roof put on, the workers knocked down the chimney, so neither of my fireplaces are actually functional. DH says the brick hearth is evil so it goes, but we want to keep some sort of fireplace. Is there some sort of insert I can use, similar to the portable fireplaces?

I'll go upload pictures of our bedroom so you can see what the original fireplace looked like before brick and boards. :)

    Bookmark   June 20, 2013 at 1:19AM
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Yep, just lay the plastic wrap directly on a generous coating of goop. I use the cheapest stuff I can get that comes in a box you can actually use to tear off pieces of wrap.

The idea is to seal out all the air so that the gel stays wet longer. I wrap the edges under the piece if possible. If you can manage to keep an area wet for several hours, the citristrip really works! I had many layers of paint and could get most stuff off with two rounds of citristrip. I needed three rounds when I rushed things and only waited an hour. Ok, there was some enamel paint on a piece of molding I got from the habitat restore that it didn't do much with, but neither did the kutzit.

I find that dental shaped modeling tools really help getting into the corners. Also that a heat gun did wonders on large flat surfaces.

Remember, the final step is to clean off the last bit of paint with denatured alcohol and oooo steel wool. The water will raise the grain and open up the pores for staining; the steel wool takes care of any fuzzies.

    Bookmark   June 20, 2013 at 8:17AM
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Wait!! I don't have time to respond to all......but gasp!! why is the brick hearth evil??

    Bookmark   June 20, 2013 at 11:11AM
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Buy a shorter fridge; I did and don't regret it. The cabinet real estate is too valuable to loose. Really, don't do anything w/o asking on the kitchen forum. They can work magic over there.

The metal wood burning stove is fabulous. Move it maybe, but it shouldn't be trashed. And the brick is not bad on the fireplace. I think the mantle is incongruous. Is it original? Use some krud cutter on the brick to clean it up. I would have killed for an unpainted brick fireplace. Go slow with your destruction. It is amazing how the older stuff starts to grow on you. Once you get the walls painted and your furniture in, many of the eyesores fade away. Just wait, eventually you will start to discover how to work with what's there. It's also cheaper not to take stuff out and replace it.

    Bookmark   June 20, 2013 at 2:51PM
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I agree. The mantle doesn't fit at all. If you don't mind working with TSP, it cleans brick up fabulously. Follow the directions on the box please :-) Sorry, but I don't agree with the cabinet situation...there are 47" cabinets and I can't remember the height of the cabinet over my stove...because I have an above the stove microwave. I don't have a cabinet above my fridge, my choice. You can do the short ones you see above stoves there. Fridge space here is too valuable. We live in a really small town, under 8000 people. We have 3 different places within 7 miles that I went to (not Menards, not HD, not Lowe's) and had people come and give me a "kitchen design". Surely you'd have something like that too? It cost me nothing to have them come, they took measurements and their plan was done on their computer. I like my kitchen...then again I knew what I wanted from the start, what wood type cabinet I wanted...it was just a matter of finding what my minds eye was seeing. Another reason this house was a bad investment....I saw what I could do...not what needed to be done and the money it was going to take and what was all possibly hidden. I saw potential, I saw her beauty everywhere I turned. Our kitchen had only 1 layer of reeeeeaaaalllllly thin subfloor and really ugly linoleum. Here I'm thinking hooray, because upstairs, the entire upstairs, I'd removed this really thick subfloor that had mastic on it. Well, before I removed that I had to remove the carpeting and the padding. Each room and the hallway had different color carpeting. Did I mention that the bathroom had carpeting too? Yeah....:( Anyway, my husband came home from TN for a weekend, so I tell him he can lift up this reeeeeaaaalllllly thin subfloor. What's under it? Why sheet linoleum from the 30's, glued down to the maple hardwood, and the maple had been painted! Yeeehaww!!! Good grief....the nails. The bent over staples. The mastic. My heat gun sure got a work out getting that crap up. We had to hire out getting that floor refinished. No way could we do it. Did you know that some pro's (ours) slop on kerosene before they run their drum sander? It loosens the mastic, old paint, and loosens shellac.

The last owner of this house, for whatever reason, knocked the chimney off for our fireplace too! We can still hear wind when it's windy though, so I don't know. I've always wanted to hire someone to rebuild it. That's an option for you guys too. Our is a cast iron insert thing. I don't know what they're called. The mantle surround was leaning forward, I was afraid it was going to fall off if I put anything heavy on it! My hearth is on the floor, and is made of the same as what surrounds that cast iron thing...1x2" tiles. Sort of a whitish, yellowish and a maroonish color. The whole thing is really pretty.

Yeah, that bathroom has to gooooo.....lol.....

Here's part of what my kitchen looks like....except I've been through 3 dishwashers, THREE!! It's now white. I was talked into black. Don't ever let anyone talk you into what you don't want. I'm on my second stove and micro. They're both now white also. I'll post the other side next....

Edited to say my cabs are 42", the one above stove is 26"

This post was edited by terryr on Thu, Jun 20, 13 at 18:17

    Bookmark   June 20, 2013 at 5:42PM
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I'm on the desktop computer. I can't find the majority of my pictures!! I know I took one showing the cool angle above the fridge....it's not here....I'm horrible at taking before pictures and I'm equally bad at backing up what pictures I do have! I've LOST almost all of the pictures I had of our first house. I'm beyond crushed. They weren't even all on digital. The majority were in print....but I digress....

You know...lol...I'm on the second half of the submit process. I can now see the picture and it dawns on me that all my cookbooks? Those are on the other side of the kitchen now....LOL Gosh these pictures are OLD!!!

and jeepers....these are it. This is all the cabinet/counter space I've got.

    Bookmark   June 20, 2013 at 5:50PM
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Here's the front of the house, picture taken by our Realtor, as it stood when we purchased.

    Bookmark   June 20, 2013 at 5:56PM
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Terry, I would've fallen in love with the house, too! I love your kitchen - it looks warm and inviting. Is that brick to a fireplace in the kitchen? If so, I'm moving in. :p

Mary, thanks again for the stripping advice! lol I did have a bit of trouble with the Citrustrip drying on the piece pictured below so I'm happy to know there's something I can do to slow the process. Denatured alcohol and oooo steel wool - got it! :) I used to refinish furniture with my mom some, but it's been so long...soooooo long...

DH says the brick is evil because of the all the toes it has stumped. Judging by the other fireplace, the bricks were a much later addition and I believe the mantle was just in the last 5 years or so. I think it would be easier to keep the brick than to take it out and repair whatever damage is there, although it does give me a mini-heart attack each time DD comes bounding through there! I think I'll push to wait on the hearth until we get the carpet pulled up. I think he's definitely set on getting rid of the wood burning stove, though.

Terry, funny that you mention rebuilding the chimney! I had JUST mentioned that to DH. I didn't get much response but I did mention it. ;)

Did you see the "hole in the wall" between the living room and kitchen? My FIL did that so he could see the TV while he was in the kitchen, again, within the last 5-8 years or so. Of course, DH wants to keep that but hates the fireplace. LOL

I have always been an "old soul" and have a deep appreciation for times gone by. When I look for furniture, I always start at consignment/thrift stores, yard sales and Craigslist. I like homes with character; perfection is boring. DH bought our house brand spankin' new 16 years ago. We started dating 1 year later and I've never liked this house. I'm grateful for it but it's just your run of the mill, cookie cutter, rectangular house with 2 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, carport and eat-in kitchen.

We have trim around the windows, doors and baseboards - all regular carpenter grade, and stylish 8 foot popcorn ceilings. I've painted all the walls at least 3 times, ripped up carpet, put down laminate, and even painted the floor in DD's room. It just doesn't feel cozy to me. "Yellow House" as my DD calls it, does. It's a bit like me: flawed, quirky, temperamental with good bones, and a little droopier in places than it used to be.

I don't want to walk in and immediately tear the house apart. I'm trying to peel back the layers to see what she really was and to bring it back to beauty. I understand the work that was done by my inlaws and I admire the love they put in to provide a home for their family. It's been 40 years now, and it's time for some of that to go away - orange/brown carpet for one. ;)

Mary, I understand what you're saying about the cabinets and I have no intention of blindly removing them without a plan. That said, I am a bit impulsive at times and we do have the luxury of going home at the end of the day. lol They really will have to go at some point. They're falling apart and aren't a good fit with the trim. Literally, they cut gouges out of the door frames to get the cabinets to fit. We do have the 5x7 pantry to house food and dishes if push comes to shove. Come to think of it, I think the square foot of pantry storage is about the same or maybe a little more than the amount of storage I have in my kitchen now!

I'm so glad to have y'all to talk to! :)

OH! Here is the only picture I have of the other fireplace. We've since gotten rid of most of the furniture, so I'll take a picture of it without the dresser.

I've uploaded more photos to Flikr.

    Bookmark   June 21, 2013 at 5:43AM
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Mary, I forgot to show you my dried-up Citrusrip! Thankfully, we (Mom and I) had "only" put it on the top of the hutch. What paint/varnish/nicotine I've been able to remove has revealed a beautiful two-tone. Possibly maple and mahogany? I'm not sure yet as I've only gotten a little bit of the top of the buffet/counter part.

Now, to incorporate it into the kitchen! lol

    Bookmark   June 21, 2013 at 6:03AM
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okay, In my haste to talk about houses, I didn't tell you what a doll your daughter is!! Shame on me!

edited to say.....LOL...didn't look at which page I was on...just hit refresh and it sent it again....your daughter really is a doll though...lol :-)

This post was edited by terryr on Sun, Jun 23, 13 at 16:50

    Bookmark   June 23, 2013 at 4:45PM
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Thanks for the compliment on our kitchen! If you look at the first picture of our kitchen and look at the right upper cabinet beside the brick...look at to the top of the cabinet, almost draw a line with your eye over to the brick. Do you see it? It's partially covered with old wallpaper...lol...it's the cover they put over when the wood burning stove was no longer needed. There's also a chimney like that in the middle of the house, we have one in our bedroom that I uncovered while working in there. I left it uncovered also. That chimney there in the kitchen starts in the basement. There's one of those covers down there too. I uncovered only half the brick upstairs, the other half is in the bathroom and I only repaired the plaster in there.
You all have a lot more patience than I when it comes to stripping. I tried the Citristrip and it dried on me, creating so much more work than I thought it was worth. I had too much wood to strip...soooo.....:p
I guess I've also got a different opinion on houses and the character that they have or their lack of it. Our first house was built for us, we'd only been married for a yr. (married 32 yrs next month) I suppose you could call it a cookie cutter house because there were 2 other houses on the street like ours...except ours had different siding. Ours was cedar sided, stained redwood! Yep, good old redwood. Inside, we all had the same layout...almost....ours was the only house that had a cathedral ceiling. Ours was the only house that had a couple wood fences installed, just because. Ours was the only one that had more than the builder tree and 2 shrubs. Everything edged in the coolest brick...found in an abandoned brickyard. Do you like to hang things on your house? I do. Always have. I had antique tools...and the name escapes me now....that big wooden thing, a horse here with a horse beside it? The wooden thing is used to hold the horses, or goes between them at least? I had a big wooden star...a long sign above the garage saying 'home is where the heart is' ...I had bird houses and bird feeders....inside we started with the builders crap trim and baseboards, then years later, when we had cash, we had those removed and had installed all oak and oak 6 panel doors. I also don't care for door knobs, unless you're in an old house, then they're alright. I like levers. I had replaced with levers long before we had the cash to replace the doors and trim. We were able to do a total kitchen redo...and I would never do one of those HGTV 20-30k kitchens....no...I can do a 3-4k kitchen easily. Had hardwood put in the kitchen too. Changed out everything in the kitchen. Had already changed out the mirror and light in the bathroom about 2 yrs after we'd moved in. By golly they still made the cabinet! So i got that and new vanity top and faucet. New floors. I had oak plywood, with picture framing done down the hallway....oh how I wish I had pictures to show you! I changed out the front door at some point, changed out the storm door.....changed the windows and the slider in the kitchen.....it didn't take long to sell our house at all. When we moved to TN ('03), that builder had a lot of cookie cutter houses, the house we bought wasn't one of them. We got in before he even had walls up. So I told him I wanted cherry cabinets, not dark cherry, but natural cherry. I didn't want brass pulls or knobs (course he puts them in, I changed them out), I changed the sink he put in, I changed the faucet he put in. I don't like white paint, if you're gonna paint all the walls, then paint it "Sands of Time" by Sherwin Williams. I picked out everything. Then when we got in, I started painting walls what I wanted them. I even changed out the front door and added screens. I painted all the doors. I repainted all the trim, I didn't like the color or the finish they used. I even picked out all the light fixtures, the ceilings fans, everything. When I had the basement finished by someone else, the guy wanted to know if I'd come work for him as his designer. We only lived in TN for 17 months, took us 2 months to sell. about what it took to sell up here. What I'm trying to say is, I think, and of course this is my opinion and my opinion only, that there's so much you can do to put your stamp on the house, to give the house character. I don't think that character comes from only baseboards and trim. I think a lot of character comes from the colors you choose and the furniture you place in the room. The last picture of our house...the baby blue up in the gables with the standard gray painted porch. Where's the character? I look at that picture and I don't see any. I've been told by neighbors, townsfolk that I put a lot of character into this house. They're only talking about the outside! I am suuuuuupppper picky. My sister calls me anal. That's alright though. I don't have to have perfect. We've had 2 brand new homes and they were far from perfect!! I hope my ramble makes sense....:-)

    Bookmark   June 23, 2013 at 6:02PM
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I understand what you're saying completely and do agree. You know the old saying, "Home is where the heart is." :) Like I said, I'm thankful for our home and have painted and decorated until my little heart's content. It does lack the architectural character of an old home and that's ok. We have/had plans to do more with it but if we follow through with FIL's house, we'll probably sell ours without doing much more to it.

Up to now, we've just tested the waters with any type of renovation on the house. Before we messed with anything any further, we figured we'd better test for the lead paint I was pretty sure was there. We bought a test kit from Lowe's today and went to the house to swab.

Either we're completely inept or there's some sort of miracle brewing but the only place lead was detected was on the exposed wood of the door I've stripped part of. The paints on the door didn't show lead, various walls with only one layer of paint on original plaster didn't show lead, none of the layers of paint in the peeling pantry didn't show and none of the layers from where we scraped the bedroom wall showed anything.

Is this possible? The appraiser is coming back tomorrow to give us his report so I'm going to ask him what he thinks. I don't think it's possible for a 96 year old house to not have any lead paint in it at all but it didn't turn pink/red, either. Neither the item tested nor the swab. The test patch strips that came with the swabs turned pink/red but that's it besides the exposed/stained wood.

    Bookmark   June 23, 2013 at 8:34PM
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Whew...Nineteen, I'm glad you understood! I know what you mean when you say that they lack the architectural details...I just add some of my own. Like chair rails, and wainscoting, I had a guy put up car siding on one of the walls in the kitchen, vertically, then I used milk paint on it...that was cool.... :)

That's a good thing, I think! I dunno, did your MIL like to paint? Lead was in paint until '78 I think. I wasn't really worried about lead while stripping, and most of my walls had wallpaper. Lead is only a problem if you make it a dust, correct? And that peeling paint is not good. I'm sure your daughter knows not to eat it! I never made it a dust, I dissolved the paint. I guess we did sand that room with the lovely texture....I suppose it might have been lead in the paint. Neither of us really thought about that. We wore masks. You're using water on your texture and scraping it off, I wouldn't think that would be a problem. Maybe it's just so old, the lead went away...lol :-) I too, would ask the appraiser what his opinion is.

Forgot to tell you....hate to get between a man and his wife....however, I agree with you...that hole in the wall in the kitchen has got to go!! I wondered why it was there....leave it to a man...so he can watch tv....lol...

    Bookmark   June 23, 2013 at 8:58PM
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I wanted to show you in our bedroom (and it's not green anymore, I didn't dig the green)...the chimney with the rusty looking cover where the wood stove would have gone. Sorry the brick looks so bad...my carpenter used to throw his joint compound at it, then he never cleaned it. We need to clean it, it needs trim up around it....my carpenter left one day and never returned.... :(

    Bookmark   June 23, 2013 at 9:27PM
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lol! Of course I understood! We seem to speak the same rambling language. :-p

I don't think the brick looks bad. Then again, I can't exactly see where the joint compound was thrown at it. lol You have to wonder what he might have been thinking to think THAT was a good idea.

In the closet in our bedroom, the walls have just one layer of white paint over top the plaster, with none of the texture applied by my mil. I tested it and there was no color change. I tested the green and blue paints in the kitchen behind the paneling known to have been put up before my inlaws bought the house. There's a lovely shade of mauve on the plaster in our room, topped with an orangish shade and THEN the texture. I even tested the chipping windows.

Knowing lead wasn't used after 1978 and that FIL bought the house in 1972, we did the only logical thing we could- we called FIL. He confirmed our color findings and also let us know that the windows had been painted a couple times. You know, to seal them "because air was coming in."

Anyway, as I'm refuting our findings, DH looks at me, shakes his head and says, "You just can't be pleased can you?" lol! Well! I know there HAS to be lead paint in there somewhere. It defies logic that we can't find any aside from the shellac/varnish/stain of the doors and trim.

Which brings me to my next conundrum. Am I "safe" stripping all that down keeping it wet with the stripper the way I've been doing it? If it's IN the stain, will I create lead dust by lightly sanding the wood after the paint is gone? I can take the doors outside but, um, I have no intention of removing the trim. Yeah, um...no.

I suppose I should start a new thread with these questions. I'll wait until after talking to the appraiser. Hopefully, he'll take a look out of the kindness of his heart. If not, I'll have Munchkin ask him. ;)

    Bookmark   June 24, 2013 at 4:32AM
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OH! And I love your doors and trim. They appear similar in style to mine.

All of the doors, except for the exterior doors, are 5 panel and I'm thinking pine. I know pine isn't one of the expensive woods, but I refuse to paint over these doors once I get the paint off. lol

Here's the most recent shot. I like the color it is and don't want to strip anymore of the color off. :)

This post was edited by 1917bungalow on Mon, Jun 24, 13 at 5:12

    Bookmark   June 24, 2013 at 5:08AM
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This excerpt is from an interesting article discussing lead in interior paints.

"The great majority of interior lead-based paint was applied before 1930. By 1940, very little lead pigment was being used for interior residences. A. Hamilton, “Recent Changes in the Painters’ Trade," (Washington: Government Printing Office, (1936). (“However, this danger is now less common since paint for inside work is so largely free from lead." (p. 38); “…the trend is very decidedly away from lead pigments of all kinds." (p. 41); “Changes in materials have resulted in the displacement of lead pigments in house painting to a certain extent, especially in interior decoration. . ." (p. 1)). See also Letter from Twombley to E. Vogelsang (War Production Board, 1944) re: Lead Requirements for the Paint, Varnish & Lacquer Industry. “The use of Basic Carbonate of White Lead in the paint, varnish, and lacquer industry for interior paints is negligible." (p. 1)]"

Here is a link that might be useful: The History of the Use of Lead Pigments in House Paint

This post was edited by 1917bungalow on Mon, Jun 24, 13 at 6:09

    Bookmark   June 24, 2013 at 5:58AM
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Good link! Makes for an interesting read. Can't wait to hear what you find out!

Your doors are probably clear yellow pine. I don't believe it's known as a "cheap" wood. We've got oak on the first floor, clear yellow pine on the second. Our trim, both around doors and baseboards, is different first floor and second floor. The older houses I've been in have the second floor trim in them. The only original trim in our kitchen was around one window and the doorway into the dining room. The one side of that trim though, they gouged out for their cheap cupboards. So I bought new reproductions. Same with the plinth blocks. They destroyed the one, they were missing for the opening at the servants stairs.

The paint might be chipping because of the shellac underneath. If it wasn't sanded. there's nothing to hold it. I sure didn't give it a thought that by sanding after I'd removed everything I might expose myself to lead. I hope not. I got all the gunk off before I ever sanded. I did all my sanding inside, all my stripping inside. I take that back, that's a lie. I stripped our wood storm door in the garage. Otherwise it was all done in the house. I did have to have some of the trim removed of course, because of the rooms or areas that were gutted. Otherwise, I did the stripping while the trim was in place. I redid several doors that only had stain and I don't know what, varnish, shellac, urethane, ???...I never knew stains had lead in them. Only paints. I learned something today. I used ZAR fruitwood stain on my doors, trim, baseboards. It matched up to the rest of it.

He thought it was a good idea because he thought it was funny. You know how people are when they know you. Yeah, he was no exception. He said he'd clean it up, I believed him. I really had no reason not to. Course I had no reason to believe he wouldn't show up one day and never come back either. Or not answer my phone calls. He installed 2 newel posts, then never came back to finish.

I think this house used to be a boarding house. With that in mind, think of your lovely doors...look at the doorknob...now imagine a hole drilled for a deadlock a few inches above that doorknob. Now also imagine that the homeowner took the guts out of the full mortise latch, so the boarder only used the deadbolt. Go back up and look at our bedroom picture again, look at the door. That's the only door I haven't stripped and tried to fix the hole. What a fun job that is!! The only reason the other 2 are done is because those 2 bedrooms had painted woodwork...lol. That also meant though that I had to find replacement full mortise latches. Those aren't easy. I found some, they aren't the same size though. My hubby isn't confident enough to take a wood chisel and ever so carefully remove some of this 117 yr old wood. I'm not either!! lol! Can you imagine screwing up a door that old? oh me oh my... :)

In our room, under the first few layers of wallpaper, was the most bright orange. It's kind of funny the colors we see, and me, why I'm just shocked that anyone would paint anything THAT color!! LOL Then I paint my bathroom a tan and navy...lol. My husband, after all these year, just goes along with it....never questions, never doubts...lol....

    Bookmark   June 24, 2013 at 4:43PM
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Your previous owner just had to be a man. My FIL has installed additional locks onto the doors in the house. They're the flip-out kind that you put a screwdriver or something though when flipped out. They're on the storm door, the exterior doors and the closet door.

My husband hung a dartboard on the back of Bedroom 1's door when he was a teenager, so you can imagine the holes in it, not to mention the five 3" nails he nailed into the back of it for a coat rack. Of course, he used the same 3" nails to hang posters and flags and whatever else to the plaster walls. I asked him the other day if, 25 years ago, he thought to himself, "haha, my wife will have to fix these some day." lol

He's funny. He's very laid back and just goes with the flow. Sometimes he pretend to put up a fight but I think he does it just to irritate me. My papaw was like that, too. I did tell DH about the suggestion to keep the bricks around the fireplace in the living room. His eyes got wide like some crazed animal and I just laughed.

I mentioned lead testing to the appraiser today. He said he wouldn't waste his money, that "with a house this old, there's going to be lead." When I asked about removal, his suggestion was to "remove all the trim and put up new." He also suggested taking out all the original wood, wavy-glass windows and putting in new vinyl.

I tested the walls again for lead today. As best as I can tell, I have all layers of paint exposed. I cleaned the area with rubbing alcohol and I swabbed the area for 30 seconds. No red nor pink at all. I then dripped a bit of the solution down the wall in various parts, and no color change. I dripped the solution onto the test card and it turned bright red, so I know the test was in working order.

Below is one of the areas I tested in the bedroom.

    Bookmark   June 25, 2013 at 4:33AM
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When I think of this house being a boarding house, I always think of George Bailey's mom in 'It's A Wonderful Life', when George got his wish and had never been born. His mom ran a boarding house. I think she ran this place....lol. Then other things around here, like the 2' soffits where HE used 16 penny nails, that awful cabinet HE built in the bathroom, again using 16 penny nails, the awful sandy texture in some of the rooms, the circles in the spare bedrooms....lol. I know though, that the last owner was a woman. She lived here for a long time before she met her future husband, they married, lived here briefly, he didn't dig this old house, so they built a log cabin about 20 or so miles from here. They tried to sell, couldn't, so they rented for 5 yrs before we purchased. The lady cried at closing. She got mad when I asked if there were hard wood floors upstairs, telling me she had just put in that carpet!!! I did tell you that all rooms had different colors and the hallway, alcove and back area were yet another color? Actually the hallway and areas were Berber, white and burgundy, the bedrooms were short shag. Lovely.

Yaayy-yuuyy!! I think your appraiser is right on the money. I think you should rip out all the walls, rip out all that molding and install all drywall and install....i dunno...whad'ya think, ranch trim or colonial? Was he still standing after he said all this? LOL I'm confused on the wavy glass. Our front door and the balcony door both have wavy glass...the only original glass left in this house. What's wrong with it? I'll never understand the logic behind removing the stationary windows in here...all you need is a good storm window. Neighbors tell us we had leaded glass and 2 stained glass windows. boo.

Good news otherwise from the appraiser?

You might post another question asking others opinions about lead and stripping the paint. I honestly don't know...I don't think it's harmful because you're keeping it wet, but you can't take that to the bank! Pretty sure with the walls, those that you're only painting, pose no threat. You only need to prime and paint. Well, fix them first of course.

25 yrs ago, when your hubby was pounding nails into the walls, did he at least drill first? That might be why there's a lot of plaster damage...???....just a thought. I know a lot of people don't know to drill before pounding a nail (my bil is one) into plaster.

After all these years, is your hubby still stubbing his toes on that hearth? I thought I was the only one who didn't know how to watch where I walked....lol....

    Bookmark   June 25, 2013 at 5:08PM
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Did he drill? pfffft!!! Not a chance! He just nailed them all willy nilly without a care in the world.

I LOVE the original wavy glass! It brings back memories of the house I lived in growing up. It was my stepdad's grandmother's house and was just fabulous. Well, it could've been but this was the early 80's when my parents were mutilating that house much like my inlaws did this one. lol! You know...paneling over original tongue in groove, carpet over wood, drop ceilings over more tongue in groove. Come to think of it, the tongue in grove on the 10 foot walls and ceilings MIGHT have been a bit much, but I don't think putting BLUE paneling over it was the answer.

Since I'm only scraping the top layer off the paint on the walls, I'm not overly concerned about lead there. The only part that leaves me a bit concerned is where the plaster is cracked/chipping and it scrapes off down into the groove.

If your house was a boarding house, I can just imagine the shape it was in! I had to giggle at the previous owner crying over her new carpet. You big meany! :-p

As soon as the appraiser got in his car and drove away, I looked at my husband and said, "Did he REALLY just say that to me? Was he serious?" I know this isn't a fancy house. It's not something most people would want, but it has sentimental value and we're not paying a whole lot for it. I don't want to make this into a brand new home. If I wanted that, I'd stay where I am.

I didn't go over there today. I've been fighting a sinus infection for a few days and today was started with a migraine. Joy, joy. It's so hard to do anything with Baby Girl there. I don't want her inhaling any of the dust and everything I need to do right now involves some sort of dust.

I will say, though, that spraying water onto the walls before scraping has been brilliant. I invested in a handy dandy paint scraper yesterday and did 3/4 of a wall in less than a hour. The 1/4 is up top and I need to remove that trim before I can really get to that. Of course, with each scrape, I wonder if I REALLY need to scrape it off or can I just skim coat over it... ;)

Here's a shot of the wall. It's not award winning, but I had to use my phone. lol The pink was under the texture and has a really neat crosshatching pattern on it. It looks like it may be the first color painted onto the plaster, but there appears, in places, like there might be a white under that.

    Bookmark   June 25, 2013 at 10:04PM
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Why is GW suddenly green? Or is it just my eyes? Hmmm...

Sorry you don't feel well. Hope you get over it soon!!

My parents bought a 1 yr old house when I was in the womb, then when I was 9, they built another. Sooo...I've pretty much always lived in new houses, haven't I?? Never even thought of that. I'm sure your parents thought they were doing a wonderful job when they were putting up that blue paneling! Gosh, I can honestly see that crud now. My in-laws have the white in their enclosed porch. We had a little of the brown in the kitchen, and a butt-load in the basement. It's all been removed, of course. Here I mean...in-laws still have theirs...lol. Some day I'm gonna have to get a picture in the kitchen and show you where the paneling was. It covered a hole, the hole was in the back of the built-in china cabinet in the dining room. My carpenter made a pretty cool door for it, out of an old original beat up door we found in the basement. Easy to describe, but takes me a lot of words, being as wordy as I am....descriptive I mean. You know what I mean Nineteen. ;->

That wall looks good, from what I can tell!! There's some really good masks, can't remember what they're called, but you can wear that when you're working on the chipped plaster, if you're really worried about it. Me? I rely heavily on the ignorance is bliss aspect of life...lol...just kidding. Long sleeves, pants, whatever you feel is necessary while working in those areas. Like I said, I had wallpaper, with some paint over the wallpaper, it all got the steamer. The foyer, up the stairs, the alcove, down the hallway and in the back area had one kind of wallpaper on the bottom, another on the top, with a border in the middle. Yack. Man was it hard to remove. Took me forever and a day. I found just one coat of white paint under, with a blue line, the line where the top went to and the bottom went. Let's not measure, let's use blue paint. Again, yack. I also had just scratch coats under that paint and nothing but the scratch coat in the parlor. But I used the NuWal, so it doesn't show.

The sellers? There were times when the husband had to stop by here, and I'd ask where his wife was....she's out in the car, she loved this house tooooooooooo much!!!!!!!!! She can't stand the thought of anyone doing anything to it!!!!!!!!! eeeegaaads!! Did she have eyes?? We had a PLASTIC chandelier in the dining room! She couldn't stand the thought of me replacing that? And some of the plastic "crystals" were hanging by paper clips!!! I kid you not. The carpet in here, must have been at least 25 yrs old and wasn't showing it's age well.....she couldn't stand the thought of us pulling up the carpet to show the beautiful maple hardwoods?? Was she crazy?? me thinks so....oy.

    Bookmark   June 25, 2013 at 10:49PM
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Hey now! You know she could've put that little paper clip trick on Pinterest and been an internet success!

That poor woman, she was looking at her beautiful home through rose colored bifocals.

When it comes to me, I'm ok with ignorance is bliss for the most part. Then I think of Baby Girl and just about need a paper bag to hyperventilate into. I pray each time we walk through those doors that nothing we do harms us, her or the house. Then I pray for a hedge of protection as we leave. lol

    Bookmark   June 25, 2013 at 11:04PM
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See now...there you go showing your youth! I have no idea what Pinterest is!! I've heard of it, no clue what it is, where it is, how you use it, nothing. I don't tweet, or that...oh, Instagram is it called? ;p (hey, I'm previewing...is that what the fancy p up there is for?? hmmm)

She was looking at her home through something, not sure if it was rose colored glasses though...lol....

I hear ya about baby girl. Our daughter was born with a few disabilities...hence she still lives at home (and will until we can't care for her any longer). There's no woe is me going on here, we can't imagine her any other way :-) ...but I'd rather a bubble around her!!! LOL Me? Oh gad...really, knock on wood, I haven't fallen down any steps in awhile...tripped on a crack...tripped over my own 2 feet...nothing of that sort! REALLY, please knock on wood!! ha

    Bookmark   June 26, 2013 at 5:32PM
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I knocked for ya! ;)

I have a twitter account but have never, ever used it. Same with Instagram. Pinterest? Yeah...it's like crack. Once you start searching, you can't stop!

Amen to the bubble! I wouldn't mind putting my husband in one, too, but apparently I think I'm invincible. I respect your devotion to your daughter and know I would feel the very same way about mine. She was born 3.5 months early, weighing just 1 pound, 11 ounces. She had all odds stacked against her, but by the grace of God, she pulled through. She is my gift from God and one that I am thankful for each day. For her to get sick because of anything I do would crush me.

Nothing to update on the house today. There was some sort of leak from the bathroom sink the other day if that counts. LOL

    Bookmark   June 27, 2013 at 12:08AM
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Thank you oh so much for the knock...keep knocking, will you? I keep losing my slippers coming up the basement stairs and I just feel a trip coming on....lol

I clicked on the p up there, didn't sign up though. Didn't really look around either, didn't really understand it...seems like it's pictures i can find right here on GW? I have so say I don't really understand FB, although I do use it.....not a lot though. My 20 something nephew dropped his account, couldn't stand the drama! LOL

I don't think I'm invisible, I know it...until something happens of course ;p I'm so glad your daughter is alive and well! I feel the same way, for my daughter to get sick because of anything we're doing with this house, and what haven't we done?.....and I fear that not only is she allergic to something in here, but so am I.

My husband and I finally installed a rod in the spare bedroom. I mean really. For a 117 yrs no one has ever used that closet to hang clothes? The one wall had an angle...eck, I hate angles, can't figure them out for anything. My husband isn't any help...lol....I got a compound miter saw a few years back for Christmas, we had some scrap wood, the closet had a shelf off to the side, that angle side, had an angle cut into it, looking at it...hmmm....my wood isn't that deep...hmmm... I just winged it. I was off the first time. Waaaay off. I adjusted how I thought it should be and by golly, I got it! Dang I'm good. LOL I can't use a drill for nothing....I don't know what it is....I know I can't drill straight! I left that up to hubby. How NICE to have a rod in there! 5 feet of rod!! And my clothes!! Well, you know...my winter clothes....LOL

What are you doing about that leak? Changing out all the plumbing, sink, faucet, etc? heheh

    Bookmark   June 27, 2013 at 4:59PM
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Woohoo for closet rods! You rock! lol

We only have one closet and it has shelves on two sides with a great big nothingness in the middle. We're considering build-out closets in each of the bedrooms. We'll cheat, though, and use Ikea Pax wardrobes. lol I know, I know...not very historical but a girl has to have storage!

I'm pretty good with a drill but I can't be trusted with a saw. Maybe with more practice...

Unfortunately, that dreadful bathroom is close to last on my list. My plan for the leak is to not jiggle the sink anymore. So far, so good! ha!

Here's a shot of the floor from yesterday. Yay for easy pull-up in the hall, even though there is a staple every 2 inches, making the perfect little staple squares.

Booooo for there being linoleum GLUED to the hardwoods in the kitchen. As best as I can tell, the original owner put in the lovely avocado green linoleum at the same time he painted the kitchen walls a similar shade. At some point, paneling was added to the walls in the kitchen over top the green. After that, the wall between the hall and kitchen was torn down, wallpaper put up over the paneling and stylish orange and yellow vinyl put down over the wood (hall) and green vinyl (kitchen).

There is an odd separation in the floor where the wall used to be that will have to be patched with similar wood. That's going to be fun. :p

I love the worn spots in the floor from years gone by.

    Bookmark   June 29, 2013 at 12:32AM
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I haven't forgotten you, Nineteen, hubbies been on vacation, there was a death and we had our anniversary :-) You're kinda like that website...think it's ask.com...."does this spark an idea?" LOL Actually you added onto my idea, since joint compound was involved...lol! Hey, before I forget, that rod in the spare bedroom is 6'!! In our bedroom, we have a decent sized closet for a house of this age. The rods were installed with the depth, not the long ways a normal closet would be. My hubby measured, and sure enough, we'd gain a whole 6"!!! You know in closet talk, that's a lot!! I had the now vanished carpenter fix the walls, he refused to fix the closet walls. So they were never repaired, never painted....I was busy with other projects, didn't want to devote that much time to the closet. Drywall dust is a royal pain. Add as many curse words in that sentence as you see fit. In our first house, back in '87, we had a fire in our bedroom. Lost everything. Insurance Co. bought us some fancy new furniture. It, and everything else in the room, was, some still is I'm not done cleaning, is/was covered in gritty drywall dust. Me? I think wipe everything down with Murphy's Oil Soap, I've done it before....just not for drywall dust. I proceed, and my dresser, I do half, just fine, the other half dries white. Water damage white!! I'm at a complete and utter loss. I tried the Heloise trick of cream toothpaste....nothing. I don't know what to do.

Get a heat gun to lift that floor. It's slow going, but it'll loosen the mastic and lift the vinyl. Maybe you figured that out by now. I had staples and nails on the sheet vinyl in this kitchen. Then the floor was painted.

We don't really have worn spots in the floor. I have stains, do those count? Nah, didn't think so...lol. There are worn spots on the newel posts. They have these little wingy things not quite half way down, why anyone would grab there is beyond me.

Better get back to cleaning.....ugh...

    Bookmark   July 7, 2013 at 7:12PM
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Thank you both so much! I can't begin to tell you how much I have enjoyed your posts. We bought an 1896 Victorian 7 yrs ago and can so relate to what your both dealing with.
Many good wishes on your projects.

    Bookmark   January 31, 2014 at 7:26PM
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