Tuesday, January 5, 2010

shh! no talking!

Library Update!

Though not completely finished, it is oh-so-close! Unfortunately for everyone, I don't have a "Before" picture. This room, (which is located off the rec room) was originally a small kitchenette for the first level. There was a cherub border around the top, an extremely narrow door that I could barely walk through, and a window that was replaced with a vent-fan for the stove. Now, the actual kitchenette was gross: old cabinets, dirty, broken & rotten egg in the fridge, dirty, grimy, small and dark. And dirty. So, Day 1, all of that was torn out. Then, I had my drywaller widen the doorway and wall-in the heat duct that ran along the ceiling. Which, brings us to....


See the border? Also, the lovely linoleum. In excellent shape, of course.

The guts of the kitchenette. Complete with mold, thrown in for good measure. And you can see the original door molding and that blasted vent-fan.

Though there were those that advised me to keep the kitchenette (which would make a downstairs apartment more rent-able,) I chose to make it another living area. When it comes time to sell, could be listed as a library/playroom/office. My thought was that I didn't want to deal with replacing all the appliances, counters, and cabinets and the increase in utilities that comes with it. Also, I like the feeling of a single-family home, instead of two separate living levels.

Widening the doorway! Though I would have loved to widen this more to make one open great room, this would have required a lot of work to maintain the structural support of the house if we took out the studs. So instead, just widened the doorway as much as the wall studs would allow. Still good! And, as a bonus I hadn't thought of, keeps this room kind of private for the times when I have a lot of company, and need to use it as another guest room.


Installed flooring in the library and removed the bottom foot of drywall where there was damage.

And removed the tile backsplash and wall (more damage) from the kitchenette. Only to find the previous owners did not use proper insulation (no moisture barrier for being against the concrete external wall.... D'OH!)

New insulation! And you better believe the leftover insulation will be put to use in the attic! Also, surprise surprise, not only are these studs not spaced the standard 16" apart, they aren't spaced equally, either!

Then comes the drywall. And then......



I used the same color as the rec room, for a seamless transition, making both feel bigger. I ended up painting all walls except the back alcove. Here are some more pictures during the painting process:


I chose the floral rug for this room. It kinda matches in a ridiculously-perfect way.... it's the exact seafoam blue-green as the walls, the mid-brown flows seamlessly with the floor color and the dark brown will (eventually) be the same color as the coffee table.* And, at some point, I will get a new futon color, probably in a light tan. See? PERFECT!

I ended up choosing this one over the blue because it blends in, and essentially "disappears" in this room since it matches so well. So, even though some may argue it's a "busier" rug with a design, the fact that it has the same colors as the wood floor and the walls means your eye doesn't notice as much. The blue rug, being a different color "pops" out at your eye. In such a small room, I prefer to have something that blends rather than makes a bold statement.

*I am going to stain the coffee table. It'll be the same stain as the fish tank stand.

And, what would a library be without.....
Bookcases! ...FINALLY!!! Plans to pick up these bookcases were delayed about 178,980 times by snow, sleet, rain, ice, more snow, and a couple tsunamis, but tenacity prevailed! I'm super excited to move my books into these and truly finish the room, which would open up the upstairs closet for more storage and clear out the boxes and bags of books littered around the house! SO EXCITED!! But, I'll be patient and wait until the molding is installed so we don't have to try to move full bookcases when the time comes... See? Thinking ahead!

These two fit in the alcove perfectly! Such a built-in look (which, to be honest, was not my initial idea for furniture arrangement, but darned if it doesn't work better this way.) My aunt & uncle were nice enough to give me these bookcases since they were done with them, and I am absolutely thrilled with them!!

So, to finish this room:
  1. Floor molding (shoe & quarter-round)
  2. Doors for under-the-stairway storage
  3. Paint the blue weave (white? tan? ...other??)
  4. Hook up/run Fios cable to TV
  5. Oh, and one other little thing..... trash the vent-fan and re-install the window! Let there be light!!
You see? Not much. BASICALLY done!


  1. whew! I get tired just reading about all of the work you did:) But it does look fantastic Candace. It's truly amazing to think about all you have accomplished with the house in a year.

  2. It's looks great! Were glad you were able to use the bookshelves and they fit perfectly!
    I look forward to seeing your place soon.

    Patti and Bob