Thursday, March 13, 2014

Spring Break

So I've taken an unintentional spring break vacation away from my blog.  Curious as to what I've been up to for the past week?

Here's a sneak peek:

I wish that I could say 'vacation' and actually mean it.  Really I've been sick and trying to rest up.  Not working out for me so well, seeing as how my idea of resting consists of ten minutes on the couch and then up I go.  Pacing around the house picking and prodding at everything.

You know, ripping up pieces of flooring and the likes.  I know I'm not the only one...

I ended up using my new favorite stripper, Cinnamon CitriStrip.  Good stuff.  It ate through several layers of paint and carpet adhesive.  Probably at least 4 layers total.

Yes, there was once a hideous layer of extremely dingy old floral print carpet that somebody clearly did not want coming up.  If I manage to find an old photo I'll update the post so you can see what you're missing.  I tore that up years ago out of sheer frustration before I even had a plan for this floor.  Sometimes you just can't stand to look at that stuff for




So here is what the upstairs hallway has looked like for a couple years:

Not great.  I used my little shorty paint brush to slap on a generous coat of CitriStrip to a small patch.  I wanted to see if it would actually work on both the paint and adhesive before I wasted too much.

(Oh, what's this?  A little glimpse into my soon to be re-decorated guest room?  Perhaps...)

After letting it sit for 30 minutes, as per the instructions on the bottle, I came back and was able to scrape through every layer with my plastic paint scraper!

I painted on more stripper, working in small sections at a time.  About 4 or 5 boards.  I knew that it would be unrealistic to try and strip the whole hallway at once.  There was a ton of scraping and scrubbing ahead of me and I have bad wrists.  Not a good combo, but do-able with patience!

After scraping off all of the goopy paint, I used a steel wool pad and mineral spirits to clean up any leftover goop (technical term) and stripper.  I went through 2 of the steel wool pads total.

And here is where it got me!  A beautiful wood floor that I thought was beyond repair just a few days ago.

Why didn't I try this sooner??  I'm definitely the type that has to put things aside for a while before coming back to them with the right solution.  It pays off to give yourself some thinking space.

Once I had the boards cleaned up, I went over everything with an electric sander and coarse sandpaper. 

So here's where I'm at thus far...

Right down to the bare boards with only a small patch of floor left to strip.  I've made it kind of a drawn out process, but it's really paying off to have some patience and work bit by bit.  My hands and wrists are thanking me and I'm always ready for another session of scrubbing and sanding instead of getting burned out on the first day.

My hopes are to get this baby down to bare wood, then stain and seal it to match the wood tone of the surrounding floor.  You see my supervisor there?  Making sure I don't clock in any overtime.

I can't wait to finish and share this little makeover!

Stay tuned!

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