Happy New Year

It’s been a while since the last post, a perfect storm laziness, heavy work load at our day jobs and a good amount of House Paralysis. (House Paralysis is a real condition with symptoms including indecision, moroseness, and a general lack of enthusiasm for any and all home projects. Unfortunately there is no cure for this condition, other than time and impending house guests).

After the rush of getting the house ready for guests, the work slowed to a crawl – that is until a few days ago, when our front parlor went from this:

Floor before

Floor before datail

To this:

after first sanding

Work in progress: stripped and sanded (sort of)

We have been meaning to do something about junky parquet laminate for a while. Not only did it give the room a 1970s look, it also was so poorly installed, it kept coming up and getting stuck to our feet. The laminate parquet tiles came off fairly easily. They were glued onto stick on vinyl tiles, which in turn were glued to the painted wood.

(oh how I hate stick on tiles.)

We first pulled up the laminate, which brought with it the stick on laminate. Miraculously, the damage to the wood floor was pretty minimal.

Laminate removal

For some dumb reason, there was one vinyl tile that was glued directly onto the wood with some absurd super-duper glue. This of course was right in the middle of the room (because of course it was):


We then stripped the glue residue and paint using Zip Strip.

Floor stripping

It all came off fairly quickly and easily. The floor definitely shows its age. There are lots of dings and grooves and evidence of some very indecisive furniture placement – “Put that big heavy thing here. No, move it over there. Wait, never mind. Move it back…”

Stripped not sanded

Stripped floor before first sanding.

There were so many different types of paint on this floor. Strangely, they were not many layers, but different patches of floor, painted different colors. Go figure.

two tone floor

A different section of the floor, before the first sanding

So now the paint is gone and the first sanding is done (it needs one more pass to smooth out some of the rougher areas).  Because the temperature drop just before the New Year, we decided to hold off on the finishing. It’s too cold to properly cross ventilate the house. We have an asthmatic cat, so we don’t want to aggravate this crusty lungs.

Originally we thought our house had hardwood parquet with a two tone border, just like other houses within our row. But our seemingly original baseboards tell a different story. I think our floors were always pine, and perhaps covered with a ground cloth or rugs. Victorians loved their rugs, after all.

Anyway, we think we can rock the pine floors, and have decided to just go ahead and finish them as soon as temps climb a few degrees. After all, we’re pretty happy with how the pine held up in out upstairs bedroom.

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