Wednesday, November 28, 2007

refinishing woodwork

I'm not sure what is the best way to go about refinishing my woodwork. I've seen plenty of different opinions on how to go about it, but it's a little confusing. There's several options that I know of: You got shellac, varnish, stain/polyurethane. Seeing as how I'm trying to restore my house as much as possible to it's former glory (more or less), I'd really like to get this right.

1. The shellac. I've heard lots of good things about this. It is what was most likely used in homes of this period and I'm all for doing the resto thing if the wood was in fact shellac'd originally. I've been lazy to actually try out the alcohol test to see if my wood is indeed finished in shellac. And therein lies my second problem. The vast majority of the wood in the home (aside from the painted woodwork) has already been altered. Meaning the original finish had already been sanded (somewhat superficially), stained, and polyurethaned. The last bit of original wood finish that remains is on my pocket doors and the inside of a closet door. Some appear to be molested a bit more than others. Another thing to consider is I've already refinished my kitchen stairs with stain/poly and now wonder if perhaps I was a bit too hasty without considering all my options.

2. The varnish. Honestly, I don't know much about this and haven't really considered it.

3. The stain/polyurethane. I already have experience using these from my kitchen stairs. It can be a bit of a pain to work with and if it gets scuffed in some way you dont have the option to fix it as easily as shellac. Plus it's not original.

So what do you think folks? I've got a few weeks before I get to the point where I seriously have to decide what I'm going to do. The nursery will be the first woodwork project on a large scale and I don't want to regret how I do this.. Help!!

Monday, November 26, 2007

tulip shades

Finally got around to ordering some new shades for the light fixture in the upstairs hallway. Not sure what happened to the old shades, but it looks to be original.. it's pretty old although a little plain. We decided to spruce it up a bit with the tulip model from rejuvenation. It totally changes the feel of the upstairs with the new shades. It always felt too bright without them, but now it has a warm, amber glow. I love it!

Monday, November 19, 2007

nursery in progress

Well today was my day off and I got back to work on the nursery. I hit it hard from the moment my wife left for work to pretty much the moment she got back. I was hoping to get a bit more done today, but I guess it's a good start. I'm about 1/3 the way through scraping down all the paint minus the doors which I'm sure are going to be a fun little side job in and of themselves. I psyched myself up to have the whole room scraped down by the end of the day, so it was a bit of a let down to not even come close. This is going to be harder than I thought. :) I'm thinking a few more solid days of this and I'll be able to try out some citri strip or something to get the last layer of paint off.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

office desk

I'm still trying to find time to work on the nursery and the dining room windows. My actual work has had me busier than I would like. Oh well. In the meantime, here's the office desk we had custom made a while back by a local carpenter here in el paso. This guy's good. You may remember me mentioning him here. We're still waiting for our file cabinet and sofa table, but I have hopes I'll get it sometime before xmas. I hope.

Back to the desk. We had it made in quartersawn oak with a mohagany stain. The hardware pulls are a pretty cool craftsman style my wife and I picked out. Solid hammered copper with the pyramid screws. I love this desk. I'm into the whole heirlooms thing. It's taken a while to actually furnish the house because we've been stubborn to buy things that are good quality & solid wood. The design for the desk was something I got off the internet and my guy was able to reproduce it beautifully. The chair's from pottery barn. For anyone in the el paso area wanting custom furniture, Octavio of D.O.G. prestige woodworks is the place to go.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

new template

What the heck I was bored. I've seen a few blogs with the same template as mine and decided to mix it up a little. Hope y'all like it! :)

Sunday, November 11, 2007

dining room windows

I've decided to ignore the rear basement window for now and move on. I tried grinding the damn thing off, but I need smaller tools to give me the angle to wrench the bolts off. I still plan to get these done by the time I finish painting the 1st floor. This time I'm working on the dining room windows on the adjacent wall. These windows are in considerably better shape than the rear dining room windows, but are still a little beaten up. I started scraping them down a bit and while the condition of the paint is pretty good, the wood I have uncovered is a little soft and punky. Nothing my de-rot stuff won't fix. Last night I got the majority of the loose paint off, so I'm thinking one more once over and some light sanding should do it. Then I need to fill in the holes where the iron bars were drilled into and reinforce a few pieces of wood that had been chipped out with epoxy. While these windows were in pretty good shape, I think the last time someone tried prepping these for painting, they gashed out a few good chunks of wood while scraping. Hopefully when I'm done with this set of windows you won't even notice.