Thursday, September 10, 2009

Renewing Oak Floors -- Before & After


When we were looking at houses, we saw a lot of places where the wooden floors had been ruined, either by neglect, or inept re-finishing. (We also got really good at finding the loose spot on the wall-to-wall carpet, so that we could peek underneath. But nevermind that.)

We were blown away by the beautiful condition of the floors in the house we ended up buying.

The wood looks even more beautiful, after a little "spa treatment" doesn't it? For those who are curious, the floors are white oak, and we believe that the decorative border around the edges of the room is walnut. The wood isn't particularly fancy, by 1920's standards, but as they say, they don't make things like this anymore. The carpenters and floor guys who looked at the place were all really impressed by the board lengths.

Because the floors were in basically good shape, and because we were being a bit frugal, we did not opt to have the floors completely re-finished. Rather we had the floor cleaned and lightly sanded ("screened") and re-varnished. Some of the old weirdnesses are still apparent, but that's fine with us.

Dining room, before.

And after. Isn't that gorgeous?

If anyone wants a good floor guy, we encourage you to call Dale at Swirsding's Floor Service. He did this job, start-to-finish, in two days, and there was no mess or dust involved.


Anonymous said...

Lovely! *clap*clap*clap*

I'm really enjoying your account of the new place; reminds me of when we got our 1912 home in '03.

SO jealous of your built-ins! They are gorgeous!


Cori said...

your floors look amazing! the house looks super cute!

Anonymous said...

Wow- LOOK at that place! I guess you are really adults now that you have a house, eh? Thats sort of how we felt when we got ours- It was like playing adult after being subjected to cranky landlords for over 20 years.

That photo is beautiful. Keep all your before and after photos- years down the line you will get a real chuckle out of them, and it helps to remember thru the photos where certain things were origonally placed, in case you have to do repairs, alterations, etc.

I particularly remember that we had 88 cans of primer put in this house before we even put one coat of paint on the walls. The empty cans of paint now hold lots and lots of flowers lined up on my front porch.

Remember when you move you can always compost ALL your brown cardboard boxes when you are done. Make sure you eat something good when you are done moving- even if it is just delivery chinese food- when you do this moving thing on your own, you have to be kind to yourself. Be glad your not moving into MY area this weekend- we have monster rainstorms here.

Did you get your broken glass window fixed? What is your new address?

Good luck to you- dont strain yourselves- be gentle. Remember. whenever you get tired of moving stuff, leftovers can always be moved into the street and set on fire with a can of gasoline. It's called "The Detroit City Moving Method'. Drink some of Robb's tasty beer as you watch it- its called a final goodbye to any former neighbors who made you nuts, like the Raccoon-trapping-cover-the-grass-in-crap-chinese-couple!

When Gary and I moved out of Detroit, our truck broke down at 2 am in a TERRIBLE part of the city, in a monster rainstorm, and we had to move all the stuff from one truck into another. The truck rental workers were supposed to help us, but only showed up at the very end so they could lock up their store and go home. I remember mouthing off at them and saying "Gee, I was hoping you showed up before I got raped and killed. " I did NOT have a good attitude that day. But on a lighter note, I did wrote a scathing letter of complaint and got back half of our money.

This will not happen to you in California, as your residents believe in Karma.


Kim said...

I cannot think of a word to describe how utterly beautiful they are!

ellen said...

Your floors are gorgeous. You won't be ready for the movers. No one is ever really ready for the movers. You can finish up most of it while they get started because movers like to start with the biggest stuff. Enjoy, take lots of pictures and get some good carryout for dinner.

Kaaren said...

Those look great!

Knit Wit said...

Will Dale travel to NC???

I love the wall color in that room. Very cool and nice!

Karen Anne said...

It looks like you even have the kind of floor registers I had. Good thing about gas heat, it's there for you in a power failure. Man, I miss my house out there.


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