Who wants to see my house in total chaos? My new hardwood floors have been spotted in lots of pictures recently, not that I’ve been pointing them out every chance I get or anything ahem.
However, today I thought it would be fun to share some of the ugly that had to happen along the way as well!
In January of 2013, my #1 project on my project wish list for that year, was installing hardwood floors. We have a very open concept downstairs and we had four different types of flooring going on. I really didn’t like how it divided the space.
Here is a pic of where three of them converged:
I had grown tired of constantly cleaning the carpet where we eat most of our meals. The laminate was dated and beginning to warp in several places, and the tile in the kitchen…oh the tile in the kitchen. Here is what was under the area rug in there:
Green was my all time favorite color as a child (think 70’s green fern bedspread), but I am much more drawn to blues as an adult. This tile just didn’t match anything else in the house. The cut pieces that make up the pattern were sharp also. It had to go.
And go it did! This is where my demo began!
I worked tirelessly for hours to get that far…with those tools. Then I got smart and rented this power scraper from the Home Depot…best $75 I’ve ever spent!
I blame my poor mother for this blurry photo. She must have taken this mid jumping jack.
I did use the crowbar and a hammer to knock up all the tiles first though. They were more effective than this tool for that part.
Once we removed all the broken tile pieces, this tool made removing all the leftover mortar a breeze! I have used this on a concrete slab before and it was awesome, but we have plywood subfloors this time around and I was afraid I would gouge the wood. Holding it at the proper angle helped prevent that.
I have installed hardwood flooring myself before and it is definitely a doable DIY project, but this time around I was really looking forward to having my hubby
do help with most of the demo. Unfortunately he hurt his back just a couple of days before we were planning to get started. Luckily my Mom came to the rescue on tile removal day, hauling out loads of old tile and sweeping up dust and debris for me. She’s awesome like that. She keeps reminding me how old she’s getting and then shows up blows that theory to pieces!
Here is the before of this area…
Wood going in woohoo…
I love the contrast of the wood and the light cabinets.
Next up is the dining room, looking from the kitchen…
Those old floors bleh.
How about a big ole mess…
That blue plastic was the underlayment from the old laminate floors.
Here is the beautiful view from the opposite side…
Nice, right? I don’t know how I worked under these conditions. Removing the laminate was a breeze though!
Here is the area between the kitchen and the living room before:
Bye bye carpet!
Another angle before:
Ah so much better after:
The living room before:
I didn’t really mind the carpet in the living room, but since our downstairs is one large space, there was no easy way to divide the space in order to keep both the wood and carpet.
Here’s my Dad guiding my son through some serious tack strip removal:
They were such a big help during the demo! (Thank you!!)
From the other side…
(Well kinda sorta…still need to trim out the fireplace.) I’m also looking for new ideas for my coffee table. I’m not liking the painted black scrollwork with the new carpet so much.
So here’s what we used:
This is engineered hardwood flooring, which is made up of several wood layers that are fused together under heat and pressure. Engineered hardwood flooring is suppose to be more durable than solid hardwood and less susceptible to shrinking and expanding with changes in temperature and humidity. Plus it is much easier on your wallet! (My favorite feature.) We purchased these from Lowes. (I am not affiliated with Lowes or this product.) The photo makes them look a bit lighter than they are.
It’s hard to see on the shelf tag, but the brand is Style Selections. They had to be ordered, but it only took 6 days for them to arrive. I picked them up in store, but you can have them shipped to your home for an additional fee.
So far I have found them to be SO easy to maintain. I installed Brazilian cherry floors in my last house and they showed every single smudge and footprint. These don’t and I love that! I also love the hand-scraped look of these.
There are several you tube videos floating around that will give you an idea of what goes into installing wood flooring yourself, so there was no need for me to take step by step pictures.
This was my second time installing engineered hardwood floors and although it was hard work, it was totally do-able, and installing them myself saved a ton of money.
I can’t tell you how thrilled I was to see this old carpet go!
My new floors have helped to create a space that is so much more cohesive…
I love that the spaces flow so easily into one another now.
We had to put this project off for a couple of years due to less fun, outdoor projects, but they were definitely worth the wait! Okay I promise to stop pointing them out in every post now. I’ll try, I really will. Maybe. 🙂
I’ll be back on Friday to share how I used this scarf to make something super cute for my bedroom, as part of Scarf Week! See you then! 🙂
UPDATE: See how great it turned out here now!