Living Room: ORC- Fall 2020 Week 4

This week has been a bit of a whirlwind, personally and with this project. Its officially week 4 of the One Room Challenge. We did a big big thing, installed our gorgeous Ingrid Stuga Floors! Now I have to admit that this room being open to other spaces really puts a damper on the final results. I can see the old laminate in the dining room and the old beige tile in the foyer. We will get to those, but we have to decide on our kitchen refresh to do those floors. Home takes time, and I need more patience.

We started out by emptying most of the room, removing the baseboards and laminate, then renting a mini jack hammer (and so glad we did!). We wanted to remove the fireplace hearth- thats the raised tile or brick extension in front of the firebox. It was wasted space in the room, the tile wasn’t in great condition, it was sharp (my daughter scratched her foot just the night before). We are also never going to use this fireplace for wood, it will have an electrical insert, in California I think regular wood burning fireplaces aren’t even allowed in new builds any more.

Unfortunately the contractors that worked with the realtor to give this home a facelift before it went on the market had some less than stellar work methods. We began to remove the tile and noticed that underneath was a layer of backer-board, then drywall!?! which was thin-set to the concrete base. It’s common to have concrete over mesh instead of wood subfloor under the hearth, to prevent fire risk, but it’s not common or even recommended to ever use drywall under a hearth, and never would you thin-set drywall. Drywall crumbles very easily when the paper layers are removed, which is exactly what happens when you try to pry it up from the thin-set.

Look at this interesting old wallpaper? The leaves were actually raised, like leaf skeletons. Kind of cool.

So we had a crumbly dusty mess to deal with. It added an hour and a lot more dust than necessary. But we got it up, and gained 15″ of space in the room! After that we were ready to clean up the subfloor and add some screws to prevent squeaks. Then we rolled out the indoor pool blue underlayment and got work laying the floors! We have already laid floors in many rooms, so this wasn’t our first rodeo. It went fairly quick since the room is just a rectangle so not much to cut around. Then added new baseboards, the ones under the steps are temporary, and will be replaced once we do the other rooms with the hardwood nosing.

When we were finishing the floors, our electric fireplace insert arrived, and we had to put it in to test it. We love it! Does it look real? Not exactly, but it gives the ambiance of a fire, its safe and not smokey. It didn’t cover the hole completely so I need to make trim painted black to go around it. Speaking of little details, I also need to get some stone to finish the bottom of the fireplace that used to have the tile hearth in front of it.

So here we are, the floors are done! They look lovely. Now it’s the little details, fine tuning, and styling the room. I purchased a coffee table off Facebook marketplace (seriously sucked down that rabbit hole right now!). The coffee table has good bones but I don’t like the finish, so staining or painting is in the future. And I’m not sure about our old coffee table as an end table. Living room tables are my undoing. See you in week 5!

Our little pup loves to perch on the sofa and watch the world go by!

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