Saturday, February 28, 2009

and days after the crocus arrive... it's a winter wonderland...

I was so excited about the advent of Spring, so you can imagine my disappointment when I woke up to find SNOW!

Although little Bowie (who is turning 2 this week) looks adorable in his snow suit, and the stone path lined with lavender looks pretty dusted with snow... I WANT SPRING!!!!

Friday, February 27, 2009

Bathroom, Phase 1 is done! Yippee!!

I finished the final details (sewing a curtain to cover up the ugly cubby, putting up the mirrors, etc) and am so excited to share the pictures with you. Bowie's 2nd birthday party is on Sunday, so we are killing ourselves trying to get everything ready. (Today's big project is re-doing the kitchen floor. FUN!) See the grossness that was the "before":

Anyway... here are some pictures. I hope you think it's pretty! And I cannot wait to get started on the clawfoot tub refinishing for Phase 2!

I had to stand on a stool to get this shot of the floor. Up close, you can still see the wood grain and tell it is hardwood, but from a distance, I suppose it just looks like a shiny floor.

Here you can see how the shower curtain and cubby curtain look together.

I was so pleased with the White Ruffles shower curtain. Filmy and sheer. I added a solid white liner.

And here is the cubby curtain. It is a Simply Shabby curtain panel that I hemmed up and hung on a tension rod.

OK... we are weirdos. I decided to skip the traditional mirror when I found these cool circle mirrors. It meets my"Cottage with a Kick!"

Another shot of the mirrors.
Here is the dental organizer. I love it!
I found this little basket for $3. I keep my "daily routine" items in here, facial cream, sunscreen, etc.

This little ceramic basket I found at Goodwill for $2. The candleholder was $1, I just sprayed it ballet pink.

These little tealight holders were $1 apiece. The hanging one was $7.

I just love the faucets. The spout swivels, but I don't know that I ever have a need for it to.

I loved this little clawfoot tub so much, I bought 2 when they were on clearance. I have one sitting on the tub as well.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

dining room color options...

I have put up a swatch of 3 different colors for the dining room. I would love to hear everyone's feedback!
The top color is "Scented Notepaper" by Martha Stewart. Middle is "Sugar Egg Pink" by Martha Stewart. Bottom is "Wild Aster" by Ben Moore.
To the left is the entry way, Dockside Haze, and I want to be sure the colors flow well together. I will be doing a treatment to fix the line between them.

Spring is coming! The crocus are here!

Every Spring, my yard signals Spring's arrival by sprouting a blanket of crocus. Tiny little flowers in yellow, purple and white dot my front lawn. I don't know which previous owner got them started, but I like them so much, I have let them stay.

What a happy suprise it is to wake up one morning and see little baby flowers all over your lawn. One day, dull dead gras... the next, bright, happy little flowers.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

The Nicholson House

And next in my Spurgeon series, perhaps my very favorite and most tragic of the homes. Honestly, I almost wept at seeing the last pictures of it...

Joseph Wiley Spurgeon built this home for George Edward Nicholson. Nicholson was once considered one of the wealthiest men in Kansas. In 1909, Nicholson was worth around $4 million and reputedly carried $1.5 million in life insurance, the largest individual policy ever taken out on an individual at that time. Nicholson was a developer of cement plant, brick kiln, zinc mine, and gas line industries. Nicholson lived in Baldwin for a number of years after 1900. He played an important role as a philanthropist, establishing missionary schools operated by the Methodist church in Baroda, India, and Manila, Philippine Islands. At Baker University, Nicholson was endowed as chair of Philosophy and Bible and was named a trustee.

When Nicholson moved to Kansas City, Missouri afterthe death of his wife, Spurgeon was responsible for moving the family mausoleum from the home to the Oakwood Cemetery. His home in Kansas City, Missouri is on the National Register of Historic Places. Unfortunately, his home in Baldwin City did not survive to receive such an honor. After the Kappa Sigma fraternity house at 8th and Dearborn burned in 1910, and they purchased the Nicholson home. “At the time, the house was the highest priced piece of property in Baldwin and greatly admired Baldwinites and outsiders alike. The Fraternity moved in early 1911.”

The George E. Nicholson home featured a series of dormers along the roofline, some triangular and some gambrel. Metal cresting ran along the roofline. The chimneys were decorated with intricate brickwork. The porch wrapped around the entire home and had turned spindle posts topped with an arched bannister. The columns were round and topped with some type of decorative trimwork. The same trimwork was used on the top exterior windows as in the Francis Xavier Jardon Sunday Home. Dentils and brackets, identical to those used on the Tri-Delta house, seperated each story.

Inside, the hardwood floors featured intricate inlays. The trimwork and pocket door are identical to that used in the Francis Xavier Jardon Sunday Home. The interior lights were quite similar to those used in the Sunday Home as well. Picture rail, a feature not included in the Sunday Home, lines the ceilings.

Again, fire destroyed another Kappa Sigma house on September 13, 1915. “The Kappa Sigma house was valued at $20,000. It was erected several years since by Mr. Geo. E. Nicholson and was very elaborately finished throughout. This town will probably never see another house on which so much money will be lavished. “ Baldwin City Ledger.

A new chapter house would be built in the same location, by Joseph Spurgeon. This brick home would stand until fire yet again destroys the Kappa Sigma House in August 1976.

T-Minus 5 Days and Counting...

Sunday is the dropdead day for a few of our projects. You see, we originally planned on having Bowie's nursery done in time for his 2nd birthday party. Yeah... that didn't happen. His birthday party is being held on Sunday (a couple days early) and his room doesn't have a ceiling or walls. But I am sure Bowie doesn't mind, really... at least that is what we tell ourselves.

What will be done, by driving myself like no tomorrow, is the kitchen and phase one of the master bathroom.

Yesterday, Steven and I installed the beadboard backsplashes (he cut, I glued & nailed). I put a first coat of paint on last night, and did a few touch-ups this morning. Tonight, we will put in the little shoe piece around the bottom edge.

Now... I do have a wild hair to paint the laminte counters flat black. I don't like the way the blue-gray counters make my gray cabinets look a bit green. But, this is a big project in terms of prep as it will require a lot of masking off, since I'd have to use Fusion spray paint. But really, this is the type of project that should be done before the shoe is installed.

Hmmm... should I go for it? hmmmm...

After that, the kitchen just needs a good cleaning. And then I will repaint the floor. It is currently a dark brown (Cottage Brown), but I want to do it in charcoal. I'd love to do a high glass charcoal or black, but gloss is not very forgiving and the floor in the kitchen is jsut subfloor. I will think on that a bit.

As for the bathroom, it's installing quarter round. (The walls are a bit wavy and made installation of the baseboard so fun). Caulking. Paint touch-ups. Tear cheap shelves out of cubby and replace with drawers I bought at BB&B. Sew curtain to cover up cubby opening. Install shower curtain (where are you, UPS?) Do another coat of floor paint and varathane - the final coat to cover up scuffs and dings from plumbing installation.

It doesn't seem like much, but we also have to get the house tidied up for the party. And I have to bake cakes and snacks....

And still, I am raring to go on the dining room. I guess pink paint is a big motivator for me. ;)

Pictures soon!!!

Sunday, February 22, 2009

FX Jardon's country residence, the sister house to my cottage

I thought you all might like to see some old pictures of other houses Joseph Wiley Spurgeon built. My very first posts were about the architect/builder for my home.... I really love his other work too!

This house is the sister house to mine. My home was FX Jardon's "Sunday City Home." This was his magnificent country home. The current owner graciously allowed me inside his beautifully renovated home to take pictures. It really is in immaculate condition.

Can you imagine how beautiful that shingle work must have been? No one does roofs like that anymore either. I love turrets... and the porte cochere (carriage porch) is gorgeous. I found a newspaper article from 1905 that mentions Jardon adding the porch for $1000. Obviously he was quite wealthy.

And here is it today. I love the blue the current owner chose! Notice the gingerbread is gone.

Beautiful shinglework on the rear turret. All the brickwork has been newly tuck-pointed.

The barn, also built by Spurgeon, then.

Here is the barn present day.

Without being too intrusive to the current owner, I don't think he'd mind if I shared a few interior pictures to show the great attention to detail that Spurgeon gave.

All the floors in the house are different inlay patterns. The staircase is simply amazing.

They still have the original door bell... and it works!

All the doorways in this room have a different shape. (Remember, these are plasterwalls , folks!)

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Vintagey white ruffled shower curtain bargain-hunting...

OK, so I could totally make my own knock-off shower curtain... But with Bowie's 2nd birthday rapidly approaching, I have too many home projects to wrap up. I can't spare the time to sew something I could actually buy pretty cheaply. yet, I just can't see myself spending big bucks on something that could possibly get grimy...

I was on the hunt for a white shower curtain, with a slightly feminine, vintage feel. Here is what I came up with!

I am ordering the "Ruffles Shower Curtain" from Target. It is only available online, but at $30 - it is a steal compared to the ones I am about to show you. I love the few little ruffles thrown in. It reminds me of some old apron you would find at a flea market. Other websites list this as a Joseph Abboud Ruffles curtain... I guess it depends on where you shop.

The next one is the White Devil shower curtain by India Rose. (White Devil? Really??) This one is by India Rose. Anthropologie has one called Cloud & Spectrum that is exactly the same but with pastel edging on the ruffles. $100 for these curtains.

This one is by Ann Gish and has a very similar to the Target one, although arguably higher quality. You can get it at Horchow for $212, plus shipping.

Here is another India Rose curtain... this time pin-tucked. $96 for this one.

This one is called the Can Can by Main Street Bedding. It's $249.

Master Bathroom pictures... at last!!!

Look at that shiny painted oak floor!!

I am so happy to finally be able to show you a few pictures of the bathroom. Steven finished the pedestal sink install last night. The floor has a few scuffs on it from him rolling around on it in his black-soled shoes (lesson learned: remove shoes while rolling around on floor to do plumbing). But those will come right up with a Magic Eraser. And we have paint touch-ups to do. That is always the last step anyway - fixing up the boo-boos.

Anyway... I stopped by Target today, eager to get my shower curtain, but it turns out the one I want is only available online. So I will order that in a bit. The shabby chic curtain we have now is pretty, but this pure white one has just the vintage look I want. The Target "Ruffles" curtain is $30. Be sure to read my next Bargainista on similar shower curtains!!!
I did pick up a plain super soft white rug for $7, though. And I need to go to Lowe's to get that dental organizer I mentioned in my last port. I have no leads yet on the mirror I want. I am almost thinking of buying a mirror and taking it to a shop to have it cut custom.

Oh, exciting news... I scored an antique 5' claw foot bath tub on e-bay for $25! We will be picking it up this weekend. We can powder coat the feet ourselves and will have an auto painter spray it for us. What a bargain, huh? Pictures of that later!

OK... enough rambling... Here's the good stuff!

See what I mean about the black floor vent? There is that $7 rug. It is so soft, you just want to dig your toes in!

Here is where I need a mirror. I thought about a medicine cabinet, but it might look awkward unless we cut out the wall and mount it that way...

Here are the new faucets. I love the British cross handles. The spout is really tall - it sort of surprised us. These are brushed nickel. I don't dig on shiny.

Speaking of not digging on shiny... The light I wanted only came in chrome, so we sprayed it brushed nickel. We left the screws chrome for just a glimmer of contrast. I love how the shade mounts have the "cross" that echoes the faucets.

Remember when I mentioned I liked how the black floor vent popped against the blue floor? This is the same scroll vent as I put in the kitchen. I can't wait until we do the electrical in phase 2 and put in push-button switches with black switch plates!
Wall Color: Wash Basin by Ralph Lauren (flat)
Trim Color: Ultra Pure White by Behr (gloss enamel)
Floor Color: Shallow Sea by Behr (gloss enamel)
Floor Sealer: Varathane Clear Gloss
Wall Fixture: Delta, sprayed Valspar Brushel Nickel
Ceiling Fixture: Hamilton Light/Fan
Toilet: Pegasus Cottage Classic Collection
Pedestal Sink: Pegasus Cottage Classic Collection
Sink Faucets: Pegasus Classic Collection, Brushed Nickel

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

we have plumbing!!!!

It is really the small things in life, really. Being able to brush my teeth in a sink and not by leaning over my bath tub. And not having to go all the way upstairs in my kids' slightly scary bathroom.

Steven installed the toilet yesterday and the pedestal sink tonight. They look great. He even got the baseboards painted and set into place. He will hopefully get them nailed up tomorrow. I can't believe how it all came together. I know in the floor painting post, the floors looked weird without the baseboard... but really, with the mushroom gray walls, robin's egg blue floor, and white baseboards, it just came together. And I love that we put in a black floor vent. It is the little things like that, the tiny details, that I love.

I will try to pick up a new shower curtain (plain, white and ruffled) and a fluffy new bathmat tomorrow. I still am trying to scope out a mirror that is small enough to go under the light fixture. I am hoping to find one in an interesting shape. Oh, and Lowe's had these really cool dental organizers. It looks like a thermos with a fliptop that you can put toothbrushes and paste in. So cool!

Anyway... I will try to scrub up the floors tomorrow and post up some new pics... for now I am super tired.

Have a great night!

Monday, February 16, 2009

DIY: how to paint hardwood floors in a bathroom

We are in the process of a bathroom transformation. Phase 1, to be exact... those following along with my bathroom project may share our excitement in that we are almost done! I am finished with the floor, and Steven is working on baseboads and installing plumbing fixtures!

Our floor was completely trashed out, and we had to start from scratch on a new one. Since we don't have the budget now for the totally pimp sea glass hex tile I wanted, I had to compromise. We decided on a hardwood floor since Lumber Liquidators has dirt cheap white oak lumber.

Hardwood in a bathroom? Am I crazy? Well, possibly. I do have 4 insane male children. But hardwoods CAN work in a bathroom... and I thought I would share with you my process for making my hardwood floor as watertight as a dolphin's butt. I shall dub thee "Bathroom with Robin's Egg Blue Floor."

1. Here you see our subfloor which was just installed over the 1 x 12 planks.

2. The subfloor was covered with 15 pound asphalt felt. This comes in a giant roll from the hardware store for under $30. Overlap the seams by 3 inches, and a few staples to tack it into place and you're golden. 3. Install the hardwood floor. We had such a small space to do, we decided to hand nail everything in rather than rent a floor nailer. Just remember to pre-drill the holes because hardwood floors are, indeed, hard. Steven broke so many bits on this little project. There are entire sites devoted to installing hardwood, so go there if you need excrutiating detail.

4. Use wood filler on your counter-sunk nail heads. Then sand!

5. Clean your floor 800 times more clean than a floor has ever been cleaned. If your wood has some type of coating on it, use Simple Green or a TSP substitute to get the grease off.

6. Primer. I like Kilz, but Zinsser or Bin are fine, too. I like water-based paints. Hey, oil-based are being discontinued anyway.... So a primer meant for latex is always good. They even make mildew resistant and all that. I did 2 coats of primer.

7. Paint. I used a high gloss enamel paint. Here's the deal... I used floor paint in my kitchen, and you could totally use that. I went for high gloss enamel since I knew I was going to be sealing it anyway. The floor paint can will say "no need to seal." Yeah, that's a load of bull. I didn't seal my kitchen floor and in 6 months it looked like crap. I did 3 coats of paint. Because I am obsessive and I don't want my floor to look trashed in 6 months ago.

8. Sand. A super fine grit with a palm sander worked just nifty.

9. Clean again like you've never cleaned before.

10. Seal. I used high gloss Varathane. I know some people use polyurethane on their floors. I wanted something super resilient and, dammit, this is a bathroom. Varathane is specifically made for floors and I wanted that super-deep gloss finish. The floor is the statement in my bathroom, so it has to be just right. I did 3 coats of varathane. You could do less, but the more coats you do, the "deeper" the paint looks. Sort of like the difference between a paint job on a Ford Focus and a Porsche 911. I don't want my floors to have the "krylon touch."

11. Do a happy dance on your new floor. And be terrified every time you have to give the dogs a bath and their nails go clackety-clack across your gorgeous floor.
Next we will have pictures with baseboard and plumbing... Stay tuned!