Knowing my limits in DIY decorating

CLBlakeyJuly 2, 2012

For years I (and hubby on saw) have done all my own decorating and finishing. Sewing my own drapes, painting, furniture refinishing etc. but today I throw in the towel on crown molding. We have done floor molding wall molding ceiling molding with no issues but crown for on top of my cupboards is a completely different ball game. Sides go in front goes out don't know where to measure ARghh!! We have been working on one small cupboard for 2 days. So in honor of 25 years of marriage we are done with crown molding and going to hire a professional and keep our marriage in tact.

Cheers to anyone who has survived this challange :D

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LOL because i know just what you're going thru. Wise idea to throw in the towel at this point. Enjoy your new kitchen!

    Bookmark   July 2, 2012 at 2:52PM
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Yeah, at some point you need to hire people or die! My husband and I have always done everything name it and pretty much we have done it. It's worked out well over the years and has allowed us many improvements that wouldn't have otherwise been affordable in our budget. However, once you get in your fifties and your husband has heart problems and or other and you yourself have ailments it's just not worth doing every little thing yourself. I'm in the pick and choose stage right now. I have forced husband to stay out of the heat and I'm tackling the pressure washing, painting and paver sealing, I don't mind those jobs. We need some fascia and soffit wood replacement which is equally up there with your dreaded crown job as "I don't want to do". I do not want to paint the soffits either because it hurts my neck. I will most likely have to sneak workers in for the job as husband will want us to do it. I think one of us will end up dead if we don't draw the line somewhere so I'm putting my foot down. The only problem is trying to find people to do jobs who know what the heck they are doing. I research everything half to death and I swear I know more than the workers do over well 50% of the time.

    Bookmark   July 2, 2012 at 3:57PM
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Just consider that you are doing your part to help the economy. We had a carpenter do the crown on our cabinets, it took him a few hours, I didn't hear cursing or worry that hubby's head would explode. Well worth the money, plus the finished crown on the cabinets was expensive so we didn't want to mess it up!

    Bookmark   July 2, 2012 at 6:07PM
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I've not personally 'lived thru ' such an ordeal, but have heard BFFand her DH 'have a go at it' over his mitering skills, or lack of. Seems he just isn't able to get it as perfect as she would like which left him no alternative but to find a craftsman to save their marriage. ;o)

    Bookmark   July 3, 2012 at 1:38AM
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CLB, your story reminded me of when I was making a surround for my fireplace. I was fine until I got to the simple moulding at the top which was a nightmare for me, because as soon as I had to turn the moulding upside down to cut it, I kept cutting the mitres in the wrong direction, or cutting them on the wrong surface of the moulding, not once but repeatedly! it was doing my head in and it was such a simple job but i kept losing my bearings with it. I can just imagine how hard the crown must be to do. :)

    Bookmark   July 3, 2012 at 2:33AM
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Annie Deighnaugh

"You gotta know when to hold 'em...
know when to fold 'em..."

    Bookmark   July 3, 2012 at 7:41AM
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I "thought" I was a reasonably inteligent person and could figure out crown molding. I anticipated a few wrong cuts so I purchased extra molding... I dutifully read up on a few how-to's...Many hours later, my DH and I gave up and called a carpenter :-(

    Bookmark   July 3, 2012 at 8:24AM
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Some of your stories are so bang on they caused a giggle. Thanks for the encouraging words I am not the only one who can't do this LOL YEAH!! My intelligence did feel challenged it is a good thing we know a finishing carpenter. He said he would come do it if we really couldn't but would prefer if we did it. Now I can't wait until he gets back from holidays so the confessions and begging can begin. If you have had it done in your house do you know the aprox cost we have never hired someone before. We have all the materials.

    Bookmark   July 3, 2012 at 10:16AM
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My guy charged me around $250 for 2 rooms (1 bedroom, 1 bathroom). I purchased the crown molding, primed and painted it myself.

    Bookmark   July 4, 2012 at 7:40AM
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Ah yes, hiring work out. I too in my younger days used to tackle so much I won't do anymore. In fact I'm getting ready to call someone soon to come pressure clean my roof. Can't believe I did that nasty, sweltering and even dangerous job myself. Well worth paying someone to take care of it. As others have said, I'm at the stage in which I often put money out instead of my time and hard work.

That said, I lucked out in a HUGE way with crown molding. Dreamed about having it for literally 20 years. My FIL was a builder, and also a furniture maker by hobby and he wouldn't touch it, said it was just too much work. My husband can also do pretty much anything and same story.

And then my son came along. I think because he didn't particularly care if it was perfect he wasn't intimidated. And darned if that guy couldn't whip up crown like a pro! He literally crowned my entire house. At one point he and his dad used to joke that they had to keep our cat moving or I'd force my son to cut some crown to put on her :). I did pay him, but less than what a pro carpenter would have charged. It was a win for both us.

My son would not deal with finishing, but I had no objection to tackling the laborious caulking, sanding, priming and painting once the molding was up.

And I will add that of all the projects one can do, in my book crown molding is one of the nicest touches in a house. It gives that extra quality impression and I literally still, after 3 years, sit (or lie in my bed) and admire it almost every day.

So hire it out and get 'er done and quit feeling guilty. All those years of do it yourself saved you tons. Spend it out and enjoy a nice house, you deserve it.

    Bookmark   July 4, 2012 at 8:04AM
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Our friend came back from holidays and had some time yesterday and did the top of the cabinets for me he is coming back Friday to do the underside then I can start painting. I am so pleased his corners are beautiful. He said we are getting the friends and family rate whatever that means?? I guess I'll find out Friday. No matter it is so worth it, I love it. Apparently I bought the wrong kind of crown molding for cupboards but he fixed that too no wonder why we were having problems. Ceiling crown and cupboard crown is different --- I bet you all knew that though LOL

Running- Your kitty deserves a crown LOL

Rather be - Thanks I was guessing around that do you know how long it took him?

PS- Hubby was so grateful that we hired someone I got "Thank-you" flowers.

    Bookmark   July 4, 2012 at 5:36PM
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25 yrs of marriage here, and yes crown mold is not fun. We've (meaning mostly dh) have done many diy projects. I dream up stuff and just expect dh to figure it out. Anyway, his breaking point is drywall. He hates it. To avoid it, he bought tongue and groove flooring and used in in the stairwell, two upstairs bonus rooms and bath. It was a pain, cause it was seconds, so tongue didn't fit the grooves very well. (He traded one pain for another.) But in the end, the tongue and groove has a great cottage look that I love. Just say NO to drywall -lol!

    Bookmark   July 5, 2012 at 9:18AM
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I think putting up crown moulding was probably the hardest thing we've done. I'm sure our neighbors were ready to call the police after hearing us yell at each other in the garage over the correct cut. I finally pulled up a DIY video and we both said,"Oh!" at the same time. We're trimming out the windows in our formal rooms tomorrow with crown on top. I better pull up that video for a refresher!

Honestly, this is probably our last DIY project. I painted our great room today and really wished I hired someone. Dh is so frustrated over the wood work. We both said we just need to hire someone from now on. Of course, as of next week our entire first floor will be renovated. Yay!

    Bookmark   July 7, 2012 at 10:17PM
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It was 1 day's work for my carpenter.

    Bookmark   July 8, 2012 at 9:45AM
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Wow, I am impressed at you guys that would do crown molding. That's amazing. My DH is awfully handy at doing alot around here, but I don't think he would attempt that. As someone said, the older you get, it is worth the $ to have someone do the harder things. My painting days are over. Now I just pick out the colors and call the painter, LOL. And painting is nowhere as challenging as crown molding. The hard part is knowing your limits, I think. I would prefer to call "the guy" instead of waiting forever for DH to do it. In our younger days, he worked shorter hrs. and did things after work. Those days are gone. Longer days and when he gets home, he is exhausted. I am not physically able to do the things I used to :(

    Bookmark   July 8, 2012 at 10:35AM
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Crown is up and it looks amazing it took him longer than he thought because I bought ceiling crown not cupboard crown but it was so worth getting him to do it. I have 2 coats of paint on so far probably will need one more. Cupboard doors are waiting for their first coat tomorrow I like to leave a lot of dry time in between for cupboards less chipping. Can't wait to get it finished - darn holidays have to interrupt my process LOL

    Bookmark   July 10, 2012 at 12:50AM
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please be sure to post some "after" photos CLB!

    Bookmark   July 10, 2012 at 3:01AM
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DIY can be a little like childbirth - when you see the results, so sorta forget how hard it was....until you start another project! LOL!

    Bookmark   July 10, 2012 at 9:47AM
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Ain't that the truth.

will post after pics in 2 weeks

    Bookmark   July 11, 2012 at 1:18AM
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