Martes, Agosto 18, 2015

I’m Floored!

Long time no see. I feel like we have been gone so long. Life has been rather hectic at the Remodelaholic household, and can you believe that we have had our new remodel for a year already? I can’t.

It has not actually gone by fast, NOT. AT. ALL. But I still can’t believe it has been a year!

I know I haven’t shared much, except on Instagram @remodelaholic… so be sure you are following us there, wink, wink!  (and get featured there by tagging your best finished projects with #imaremodelaholic)

Anywho, we are just getting to the point where I am feeling like maybe I can have another hobby in life, like I don’t know cooking dinner for my family, instead of living off of takeout.  This all consuming remodel, which is bigger than anything we have ever taken on is FINALLY livable.  I would say 85% finished which is as good as gold to me.  I am ready to slow down on the remodel front and take it like we normally do i.e. SLOWLY!

But I am here to share a momentous achievement.  Houston, we have flooring!

Birch House LIving Room 014

Every time I walk into my house, I want to break out into Aladdin’s “A Whole New World”.

I can show you my floor…
Shining, shimmering, splendid
I can open your eyes,
Take you room by room
Over carpets and under
On a magic, new, oak floor!

A whole new floor
A new fantastic thing to see!!
Its finally in our house

Won’t take it out
And no you are not dreaming

A whole new floor
A dazzling thing I never knew
But when I’m standing here
It’s crystal clear
That now I’m in a whole new house with you
Now I’m in a whole new house with you

Unbelievable sight!
Indescribable feeling
walking, tumbling, and mopping
on a beautiful oak new floor.

A whole new floor
I just can’t close my eyes!
A hundred thousand boards to see
Hold your breath – it gets better
I’m like a HGTV star
I’ve come so far

I can’t go back to what we used to have….

Okay maybe I took that too far.  But it was worth it, because I literally break out into song every time I walk into my house.  Let’s talk about the flooring first, because I LOVE everything about it.  Like everything.

I got the wood from Impressions Hardwood Collection.  I choose the most beautiful White Oak, called the Elegance White Wash.

Elegance White wash detail

I picked out Elegance, White Wash for several reasons.  But first the look and style.
  1. It is a relatively light wood. The color is so fresh, pretty, and ultimately timeless.  The room feels light and airy and open.  (We’ve done dark woods in past homes however, I am not a happy camper when I am a slave to my broom and mop, and let’s be honest, dark floors are just that much harder to keep clean, even though they are a beautiful choice.)
  2. More of a matte finish.  There is a slight sheen, but it is by no means shiny.  I LOVE the finish, REALLY LOVE!
  3. The wood is solid.  Solid wood that is a permanent feature in our home.  That can be refinished in a LONG time and be new again.  It is worth the investment to have a floor that can be “new” more than once.  It is what I would call a forever floor… and it has a lifetime structure and wear warranty!  BONUS!
  4. This flooring has SO much character.  The beautiful natural knots and wire brush distressing, add so much visual interest.  It has a bit of rustic look, and yet it is totally elegant.
  5. I LOVE that wood flooring allows me to add area rugs to my rooms.  Wood floors are the perfect classic backdrop for a beautiful rug.
  6. Speaking of the color I chose… did I mention it hides dirt.  (let’s get real here, if you are a person who lives in the real world, that doesn’t include mopping and sweeping twice a day, it is a NICE feature)

Birch House LIving Room 017

This was a big investment so I will admit we decided to forgo a DIY install.  We were considering it at first but the more the house project dragged on the more tired we got.  This decision was one of the best ones I’ve ever made, for two reasons.  First he was able to squeeze us in while we were on vacation (think of coming home to a brand new house…) and he has tools and expertise that ensured our floors are perfect.

The biggest saving grace came a couple months back when we were ready to install the floors, by divine inspiration we decided to call our favorite local flooring installer.  He was available and able to start later that week.  However, he decided not a minute to late to check the moister content of the wood, with a special (expensive) tool that we do not own.  Our wood had come from back east, where it is much more humid.  Many of the boards were about 18% moisture content, and he informed us that in our dessert climate the wood needs to be dried to about 7-9% or we will have big gaps from the wood shrinking and drying over time.  He had saved us from a DIY nightmare (which he mentioned he’d seen a lot, maybe because most of our wood floors in Utah don’t come from local sources and come from more humid climates)

I should explain that we had had our wood acclimating for 3 months prior to him coming, but we hadn’t known about the moisture content, and hadn’t done the acclimating process right, enough to dry out the wood.  He showed us what we needed to do to get the wood to dry properly.

First we removed the plastic covering on each box.  Then  we cut off the cardboard end of each box, (careful to leave the actual wood planks in the box, to help avoid warping while they dried out.  After that, we stacked them log cabin style so that the boards could breath.  All we could do was wait til they were ready.  And wait we did…

Finally after about 2 months they were perfect!  Unfortunately our installer was booked at that point so we just had to wait even more… Did I mention that I am not a patient person?  Luckily, right at the end of July we went on vacation to Disneyland (worse idea ever, never go to Disneyland in the summer!!) But the best part of my vacation was coming home to brand new beautiful wood floors.  And they look divine!

Heavenly floors.   Floors from heaven.  Heaven sent flooring…

Did I mention that I LOVE my new floors?  So, let’s just share some quick before and after shots, because that is what I judge my personal remodeling success by.  A good before and after shot of my space.

We put the flooring throughout our whole first floor every space but the bathrooms and laundry.  So I am just going to focus on the living room for right now.  This is the space on or around the day we bought it.

Remodelaholic living room flooring install process (2)

Remodelaholic living room flooring install process (1)

We had a lot to remove, especially the squeaky old sub-floor.

I ordered a couple samples from Impressions.  I was going for light toned, mid-century looks.Remodelaholic living room flooring install process (3)

I posted this on Instagram and people went crazy for B, my favorite!  Which made me feel good about my decision!
 A peek into the real madness of a whole house remodel, that you live in…  stuff moving from room, to room, to room….Remodelaholic living room flooring install process (5)
Remodelaholic living room flooring install process (6)
We got the new sub-floors in and leveled which took about 3 months, and I kid you not.  The installer arrived to install the floors and sanded all the seams on the sub-floor.
Remodelaholic living room flooring install process (7)This is when we found out the wood flooring wasn’t quite ready.  I can’t quite put my disappointment into words…  Needless to say I was SAD!  But we didn’t take long to prep the wood so that it will dry to the proper moisture level for our climate.
Remodelaholic living room flooring install process (9)
 So you can see what a difference the dryness could make take a look at this picture.  One piece was fully acclimated to our dry climate and about 9%, the other was at about 18%, not yet ready!  There was a difference in the width of the board by about 1/16-1/8 of an inch.  If we had installed our wood when it wasn’t ready, we would have had huge gaps between boards!
Remodelaholic living room flooring install process (12)
Well, we waited and went on vacation only to come home to a finished floor!  Best money I’ve ever spent.

Birch House LIving Room 014

Mid pictures of course I had a couple pink ghosts run through the living room… (and throw their shoes on the floor, and spill a bag of goldfish, also on my lovely clean floors… c’est la vie!)

Birch House LIving Room 015

Birch House LIving Room 006

Birch House LIving Room 001

We will slowly be revealing all the other spaces we’ve been working on, key word, slowly.  But I HIGHLY recommend our flooring it is absolutely lovely in every way!  We are so pleased.

**Thanks to Impressions Hardwood Collection for partnering with me on this post.  They provided a portion of the new flooring for our review.  All opinions are my own.

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