Saturday, April 30, 2016

Cook House Remodel: Foyer, Hallway, and Stairs

Because Georgia’s nursery and Wyatt’s bedrooms are upstairs, we knew now was the best time to tackle our stairway. We love that our house was so very well-built but the decor is dated to say the least. The pink cast iron railing, hunter green walls, and yellow/green carpet had been past its prime for decades I am sure.
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Our idea was that the green paint was livable if we could just remove the carpet, retread the stairs, and paint the railing. And then this happened:
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The ceiling fan (dated but okay for the time being) began to pull down out of the ceiling. We were scared that one day it would just crash on someone’s head. The only way to reach the 18’ wiring was to rent scaffolding. At that point, we decided to go ahead and paint the walls with a fresh coat of paint since we didn’t want to have to rent it twice. Our stair project was quickly growing into a multi-area project.
Just removing the railing made a huge difference immediately! With the railing out of the way, Justin started in on changing out the light in the foyer and painting the walls a deep red color.
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After the painting was done, Justin started ripping out carpet, carpet strips, and the stair treads. We had to start literally from the ground up.
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He and his daddy got the stairs treads routed, installed, and ready for stain. I simultaneously repainted the hunter green front door a rich, glossy black.
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I am a terrible decision maker when it comes to paint colors, stains, furniture, etc. We ended up buying eight sample pots of stain before deciding on a color.
Thankfully Justin is a patient man. He got the stairs conditioned and stained and reinstalled fairly easily.
Here’s where the project grew yet again. Justin decided while we were ripping up the stair carpet, we might as well rip out the hall carpet since it was all connected basically. At a little less than 100 square feet, we opted to get white pine tongue-and-groove flooring and stain it to match while we were working on the stairs. I took days and days of Justin nailing, cleaning, wiping, staining, and sealing. He was working on that hard floor on his knees for hours on end. It really was the best decision and the floors turned out perfectly.
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He sealed the floors with polyurethane and meticulously applied the sealer to the stairs and risers as well.
Both railings got a fresh coat of hammered bronze paint. It took four folks to bring them back in and reinstall them. These cast iron railings are well-built too but they aren’t light for sure!
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After the railing install and adding trim and shoe molding to the stairs, Justin got it all caulked up and repainted. The before and after shots are just amazing to me and it’s even more impressive in person! I am glad I have a handy husband that is willing and able to tackle such huge projects.

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