Tackling renovations in an older home

So I had a blog post all ready for this morning, which I had written last week since I knew I wasn’t going to be doing any writing this weekend.  I forgot to take photos.  So, today’s scheduled blog post will now be happening on Friday.  Or whatever day I want to post it 🙂

Instead, I want to tell you about all the great (sort of) spur of the moment carpet ripping my husband, his parents, and I did!

My husband and I live in a 1968 split level house, and we’ve been doing small renovations here and there to get the house modernized, since it’s still stuck in 1968.  This weekend, we decided to tackle the upstairs carpet.  Over the summer, it smelled like musty cigarette smoke, mixed with your great grandmother’s house. Just to give you a little idea of what our nostrils were bombarded with when we came in the front door.

Now, we’d been told when we looked at the house that there were definitely hardwood floors underneath the carpet, the owners were just unsure of the condition, and that they would probably have to be refinished.  I took that to mean, ‘hey, they most likely look fabulous, maybe with a few stains here and there!’  Boy was I wrong.

Someone took a nail gun to the hallway, placed a number of screws a quarter of an inch apart, and then in some places removed the screws, leaving gaping holes.

One area of nails, screws, and holes in the hallway.

One area of nails, screws, and holes in the hallway.

I’m sure you can understand my dismay and utter disbelief in the human race at this point.  And we had just started when we found this catastrophe.  But, since we had started, we decided to keep going, hoping the rest of the house wasn’t like this.  We found that in some areas, paint splatters covered the floor.  Other areas, like the dining room, look fabulous.  A majority of the rooms have this ugly the black honeycomb patterned staining from the plastic gel padding that was used.  You never know what you’ll find in old houses, that’s for sure.

There was a nice layer of dust and grime build up covering the floors once we removed the carpet, so I was scrubbing and wiping the floors down while my husband was shopvacing and pulling up staples.  My father in law was ripping up and hauling carpet, and my mother in law was pulling up the carpet tacking along the walls.  It’s moments like this that I wish I had taken more photographs.  I realized, too late of course, that I don’t have too many before, in process, or afters of the whole process.  This is why I don’t do a diy/home reno blog!

Here's a before: right after we moved in-before we painted, before we got coaches, and before those 1970s curtains came down.

Here’s a before of the carpet we ended up taking out: right after we moved in-before we painted, before we got couches, and before those 1970s curtains came down.

Shifting furniture to get to the carpet.

Shifting furniture to get to the carpet.

Here’s an after shot with the lovely, but distressed, floors!

Living Room, after carpet removal.

Living Room after carpet removal.

Dining room after carpet removal.

Dining room after carpet removal.

All in all, I think it looks better without the carpet, flaws and everything.  Living in and attempting to remodel a 1960s house has really given me a greater appreciation for styles of the time, and the craftsmanship of the era.  Despite being worn, the stairs have beautiful rounded edges.  The floor shows distinct wear patterns.  And yes, someone did completely wreck the hallway because of a few squeaks, but it adds a ton of character that I’m not sure I’m going to want to change when it comes down to it.  Just like objects, houses, flooring, appliances, etc, have histories, too.  They may not have a super traceable one, but it’s neat to think about all the possibilities!  After seeing this, I hope you understand why I’m not prepared for my normal post!  Now to go find some pretty area rugs so the furniture doesn’t slide!



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4 responses to “Tackling renovations in an older home

  1. Love the blog. Your life sounds so rounded and full of fun and you find great things to write about.

    • Thanks so much! I usually can’t sit still, and am always in search of the next fun thing to do or write about! I’m so glad you’re liking it 😀 I’m really loving your blog as well!

  2. Jolene Webb

    I have no idea why people love to put 10,000 nails in the floor.. When Jim and I had to rip out our bathroom because of all of the water damage I swear jim pulled 250 + nails out of the bathroom subfloor.. I guess whoever laid it down was excited to test out his new nail gun:)

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