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Friday, February 28, 2014

Bathroom - Lots to Learn

One should always keep an open mind and pursue knowledge at every opportunity!  Sometimes knowledge is staring you in the face, but you just don't see it.  Sometimes you actively pursue it. Other times your emotions take over and logic is not the first thought.  This is how my last 2 weeks or more have been going.

Let's start with the active pursuit of knowledge.

I started taking classes to earn a certificate in Professional Home Decorating.  So far I've only attended 2 out of 4 days of Home Decorating 1.  I've relearned how to use a drafting ruler (or architectural ruler) which I've owned since my drafting class in high school.  The difference this time is that I'm using it to draw floor plans and furniture templates instead of diagrams of different types of machinery.

I'm happy to say I have an instructor that likes to see perfection, so I'm being challenged in a good way.  She has been in the industry for years, loves to teach and as a student herself, she is doing some very interesting work with textiles.  I'm usually quite nervous about being in new situations and speaking in front of people, but this learning experience has been a blast!  I didn't have anxiety about the first day of class or about 'presenting' my first room plan on the second day.  I always knew this type of work was a passion of mine and doing projects around my house is very gratifying.  I'm hoping what I learn in class will help me to successfully plan and execute projects for others.

Take a look at my homework - it is the start of the next room of this challenge! 

Letting emotions take over logic.

This is something I think I will always be working on.  The recent situation involves my new bathroom counter top.  I ordered it from Menards mid-January.  They only deal in counter tops installed by the purchaser and for my Quartz counter, I would receive a template to confirm all measurements and other details.  The template came and clearly was wrong.  My order states that I wanted a contoured faucet set up which basically sets the faucet and handles in an arc.  The template showed them all in a straight line.  I also noticed I did not order one of the sides profiled correctly and the center of the sink was one inch off.  So off to Menards I went to let them know I needed a new template.  They wanted me to pay another $35.00 for a new template.  I stuck my ground and explained over and over how they messed up with the faucet placement and I didn't want to chance going without a template assuming they could easily make more mistakes at a bigger cost.  I also didn't feel I should pay for their mistake.  Okay, it wasn't Menards' mistake, it was the fault of the counter top manufacturer they deal with.  They finally saw it my way moments before I was ready to cave.  The second template was correct and I gave the go ahead for production of the counter top.

Where the most emotions came in was when the counter top arrived.  I went to Menards to pick it up.  There were 2 out of 3 holes drilled for the faucet.  I went a bit berserk telling them I paid for 3 holes and I expected 3 holes.  One of the employees told me I just had to pop out the hole with a hammer as it was partially drilled.  I said I didn't know how to do that and didn't want to chance ruining it.  I expected they would talk with the manufacturer.  Instead one employee pulled out a hammer and planned to do it himself.  I was quite worried at this point, so I pulled out my phone and opened up a voice recording app.  In front of 5 guys that were in some fashion trying to help me, but mostly (I think) amused at the situation, I casually held the phone and said "Everyone here understands that if he ruins the counter top I'm not taking it, right?".  I happily recorded them saying "No, of course, we wouldn't expect you to".   Well I'm not proud of how I acted, especially after learning why the third hole was not fully executed.  The manufacturer generally delivers counters like this so that the counter doesn't break during transportation since it could be weakened by so many holes close to the edge.  The Menards employee didn't do a bad job in the end, but gave me a bit of a scare by not calling me when it was ready.

It is now safely at our home.  We set it in temporarily to see how the sink looks and to draw an outline underneath for installation (later) of the brackets to hold the sink in place.
Ain't she pretty against that old, awful wallpaper!

Putting 'do it yourself' books to good use - holding up the sink.

Now for knowledge that is in plain sight, but takes some hard knocks to figure it out!

Stripping the cabinet bases was not so much fun.  I went through stripping and staining already when I did the drawers and doors and medicine cabinets which came out wonderfully.  You can see them in my Purchases and Progress post.  I got all my supplies together including grade #2 steel wool not shown.

It's pretty obvious what room this is :)
The drawer on the left is one I hadn't stripped yet.  It was the one unusable drawer that didn't come out until we pulled out the old counter top.  Now that I'm raising the height of the counter this drawer will be usable.  The coffee can is used to hold a small amount of stripper while I'm applying it.  The cookie tin is the container that will hold the yucky gunk you scrape off when the stripper works.

I should have remembered what I learned when I used this stripper before.  You have to have just the right combination of putting on the stuff and waiting.  For whatever reason, this stripper tended to dry out quickly.  It took a couple of tries before I remembered to watch it for a minute or two, then reapply over the dried out spots.

The stripper is not going to work on the un-shiny areas.

After proper application and waiting the time the product tells you to, it is working!

Another bit of info I should have known - WEAR GOGGLES!  While I was scrubbing the wood with steel wool and the stripper product, something hit me in the eye.  I thought it could be a bit of steel wool, but as the burning grew it didn't matter.   I needed to get to the working bathroom right away and flush my eye out.  It turns out it was only stripper and quickly felt better after a few minutes.

So this is the stripped down version.  I plan to stain tomorrow.  I'm getting there.  

The walls need a bunch of sanding and a couple of areas need more dry wall mud before I can think about painting.  I was worried about one section of our wall that had mold quite deep.  I dug it out and will put in a piece of wood rather than drywall since it is right where the base board will be.

I started scraping chipped paint by the exhaust fan in the ceiling and almost ended up scraping the whole ceiling since the paint was coming off in large chips.  I sanded the edges and applied some drywall mud to hopefully seal the edges.

Well, I hope I didn't write a book  this time as my husband said I did with my last post.  Has anyone gained some new knowledge lately?  Let me know your favorite lessons learned.  I love comments.

Click HERE for a fitting end to this post  -  have your sound turned up.

1 comment :

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