Friday, April 13, 2012

christmas morning

cabinet boxes
cabinet boxes are fastened to the walls

island as worksite
doors and maple end panels are attached to cabinet boxes

island as worksite-to 2nd level
looking up...

kitchen-through void
....looking down

Lauchie's new library

island sink side
hardware installed

the post

kitchen view to stairs

island view to hall

kitchen island-outside

The kitchen installation must be the most anticipated event in the reno process. Just like kids at christmas, we made up our wish list, sent it in to our kitchen man and counted the days until it would be delivered. Our builder Charles Lantz and his team of elves unpacked their big sack of goodies this week and left a bright and shiny kitchen under the tree for us. Remember the kind of smile you wore when santa left your favourite toy? Well, my smile is that big.

Next up are the countertops. The stone supplier has made his measurements and our order goes in the queue for cutting. In a few weeks will see these guys again.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

houston, we have lift-off

view to hallway

foyer to kitchen 2

foyer to office

wood floor from void

foyer to kitchen



tile detail in upper level shower

jigs and blue wall
Jigs doesn't know she is lying where the T-U-B is going to be installed

The flooring finally got sorted out a couple of weeks ago and the work is surging ahead. The painters have been back to roll a second coat on the walls and the topsail boys have been finishing up the baseboards. The tile has been laid on the floors and in the showers. The cabinet installation began this week and the big expanse of space has been cut-up and carved into work areas. I'll miss the minimalism of the wide open spaces but I am excited to see how the plans will come together. Stay tuned Lauchie, there's more coming tomorrow.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

not on the level

do not move flooring sign
this just about sums it up

Jigs is posing in front of the floor which was laid, pulled up, numbered by row and neatly stacked for reinstallation.

shade from above
using paper models to test out the scale and shape of the light fixture in the void

does sarah richardson do tests like this?

Over the past couple of weeks our reno has veered into the reality-TV zone. The place where things go wrong, wires get crossed and the knock-on effect of the delay is felt by every other contractor in the process. The floors in this old house roll up and down like a ride at Disney world. We knew they were a problem but they have turned into a bigger problem then we anticipated and we had to order new flooring, reschedule the installation of the floor, installation of the kitchen, the countertops, the final get the drift. We were ahead of schedule and are now falling back a bit. Fingers crossed everyone. We need trucks to travel swiftly and the proper alignment of contractor schedules.

When you have been dealt a couple of bad hands in the reno roulette, there is nothing like a bit of demolition to get your heart back in the game. Last week we marked the end of an era with the demo of the old steps that led to the upper floor. They have been made redundant by the new stairway inside. The upper level doors will have railings across them without stairs.

Saturday, March 10, 2012

turning on the heat

you can have any colour you want as long as it is neutral

paint colour
colour enthusiasts may be a bit disappointed with my choice of grey

S&R guestroom
the susan/rachel guestroom is painted out to match benjamin moore's bleeker beige

upper level skylights
most of the open areas are painted in a very light grey which reads as warm white

doors to void
almost all of the doors have been hung, trimmed and painted

upper level closet
the shelving and built-in bits have been installed in the closets

jigs hall
Jigs is still wondering where her food dishes are going to go

foil layer
the upper floors were laid with a foil covering as preparation for the on-floor heat system

onfloor heat closeup
plywood "sleepers" create pathways for the hot water piping which is stapled into place

onfloor heat & feet
the plywood sleepers are screwed into the subfloor to secure them

TV room floor
TV room floor

upper level bedroom to hall
upper level bedroom to hall

upper level hall

upper level opening
upper level opening to kitchen

upper level opening south
upper level opening

2nd level to 1st
looking over the edge

Lauchie is home and is enjoying the reno up-close and personal. But he wants to make sure that my audience (he holds up two fingers to indicate the readers) is kept up to date on the activity on the jobsite. Most of the work that has gone on over the last two weeks is not very photogenic. The painting of white primer with almost white paint doesn't look like much. The installation of the on-floor heat system gave me something graphic to work with. More artworks from Tony the plumber. The weather today is gloriously sunny and the light pouring in through the new windows made us anxious to move back in. It won't be long now. The floors are scheduled for installation next Wednesday and the kitchen goes in the following week.

Monday, February 20, 2012

building inspector

building inspector
jc landry inspects site

kitchen view to back
kitchen view to backyard

sun over airwell
a few of the boards covering the airwell have been removed and you can glimpse the lower level.

last week the trim work began. "susan's room" has one window trimmed out.

trim office window
the office trim is almost finished.


office view to foyer
the doors are being hung

view from office
view of the front garden from the new office window

the new blue boiler that will keep us warm

My father loves building things almost as much as he loves talking to people. Construction sites offer the perfect marriage of both. Anything under construction is fair game and he casually drops into building sites and chats with anyone who will answer his questions. Folks are surprisingly free with information and he usually comes away from each visit with a wealth of technical advice and a full background report on personalities involved. We joke that he is the local building inspector and I think some people might think he really is official. Needless to say, our renovation is of great interest to him and he's been keeping tabs on everything through the blog (hi dad!) and with his site visits. He signed off on the trim work last week and got some good tips on mud application from the tapers.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

wide angle

kitchen windows
new kitchen window installation

kitchen window wide
trying out a wide angle lens on the windows

foyer-to kitchen
foyer view to kitchen

over foyer
void over foyer


upper level library shelves
upper level library shelves

upper level hall-view to TV room
upper level hall - view to TV room

TV media room
TV room

upper level view to TV room
upper level view to TV room

upper bedroom to hall
upper level bedroom view to hall

upper level bedroom


The last of the windows went in today. Two windows for the kitchen were held back until the cabinets could be installed underneath the openings. When the countertop comes it will extend into the sill so the windows had to hung at just the right height. The drywallers continue to tape, sand and fill the gyroc and the plumber has been busy installing the boiler for the heating system.

I'm trying out a new lens on my camera. The Lumix GF1 came with a 20mm lens which takes great images but was not giving me much scope for the wide angles needed for these interiors. I wish I had been using this from the beginning of the reno. Everything looks spacious and grand. This must be how real estate agents make one room shoe boxes look's all smoke and mirrors.