Just in time for summer to hit early – did you hear Seattle was one of the hottest places in the country on Monday? – we (mostly) finished our family room. I’ll get into why I said “mostly” shortly.
It was a long weekend with a long punch list that entailed no fewer than 42 different types of caulking (okay, about 6), lots of random odds and ends, and many, many trips up and down a 10 foot ladder. I have been wearing a FitBit lately, and I logged almost 15,000 steps on Sunday without really leaving the house, except to move some furniture home.
It’s funny, I have somewhat forgotten everything we went through to do this particular transformation, and at first blush, the original doesn’t look that bad. Let me assure you that the place photographed well, but it was disgusting.
One of the first things we did last summer was rip out the old baseboard heaters throughout the house and put in a furnace/heat pump system. Those things were hideous!
In any case, we turned this:
Don’t worry, the view is sill there – I took these photos on a day with a “marine layer.” And, the original photo had some realtor Photoshop magic going on, no question.
I absolutely love the white windows, though it took quite a bit of effort to get them that way from the original stained grey color. The black windows are new casements – the originals were in poor shape so we replaced them with some nice double-paned units. Thankfully, the larger windows were all double paned already, they just needed some TLC to bring them back to life as they were pretty beat up. Nothing a little caulking, spackle, and patience couldn’t fix. Oh, and liquid sandpaper – lots of liquid sandpaper.
The vertical trim above the windows was a last-minute decision to pay homage to the original design of the room. We originally had just framed over, insulated, and drywalled over the existing fiberboard (it used to be very, very drafty), but on Saturday, we decided to add those little trim boards at the last minute – scope creep at its finest. I like them – they are a nice touch.
And, we turned this:
You’ll note we are missing a counter surface on the window bench, and the TV needs to be mounted to the wall, which is why I said it was “mostly” finished. We poured concrete for this bench but didn’t like how it came out on the first go-round, so we re-poured it on Saturday. The second attempt is coming along much better – it just needs to cure awhile before I can seal it, and then installation will be a snap.
The room at the top of the steps will eventually be the kitchen. Eventually.
Here are a few other angles. In the end, I love the black faux beams. Prepping and painting them, eh, not so much.
The fireplace gave us fits like no other project ever has. While it is solid granite, it is totally random and required an amazing amount of patience and dedication to trim, tile, and paint up against. When Dan cut the trim boards for the sides of it, it looked like he’d cut a mountain topo map, not a trim board – and it took him about a half day for each board. Then, I came along and filled in the gaps with caulking, which was an exercise in futility, but it all came together in the end.
Not exciting, but look at this nonsense!
And finally, a cohesive ceiling. While this looks super cool, we spent a good chunk of our lives nailing bamboo flooring to the ceiling – not really per the manufacturer’s instructions, ha! As you can see, the painter has work to do in the back of the house where the kitchen is. If you can believe it, we initially thought we were going to paint all the windows black. That would have been a huge mistake!
In the end, this place is finally starting to feel like home. Having our couch back has been the best thing to happen in a long, long time. We are all cozy.
Now, we just need to rest and recuperate for a while. We have spent the last two days doing absolutely nothing, and, today, did this:
After we have our strength and motivation back, we have some work to do to finish the foyer (door and windows to replace), and then, it’s kitchen time.
Sleepy in Seattle