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A Peek at Progress

December 2, 2009

“The road to hell is paved with works-in-progress.” ~ Philippe de Comines

Finally, Some Paint

Flat top of the shingle molding

Flat Top to Accessorize

After some steamy nights (of removing wall paper), the plaster cracks on the walls were repaired and leveled with

joint compound. They were then sanded. The Man installed all the bead board and repaired trim and molding. We are using shingle molding along the top.

no Room on the sink

No Room on the Sink

The flat surface will allow me to accessorize.

The bead board was painted Sherwin-Williams Duration Extra White Semi

Gloss and the walls Sherwin-Williams Duration Matte Bravo Blue.

The Man also made a shelf that will be attached to the wall below the mirrors  since the pedestal sinks don’t provide much working space and no storage.

Stay tuned.

6 Comments leave one →
  1. December 3, 2009 8:22 pm

    Hi, DEborah, thank you for stopping by & WOW, what a beauty of a house Fairfield is. Lucky you! I love older homes and would love to have one, if my hubby were handier. Looks like you are making it your own & it’s looking great. I had to scroll down to see your Buster, he is a cutie too.

    Hope to see you again, I’ll have to stop back by and see your progress. Older homes are so pretty!

  2. Jennifer permalink
    December 12, 2009 8:41 pm

    Wow! That color scheme is what we had in the house-now-for-sale, and I’m so glad you visited ME, so I could visit YOU, and read this post…because I was wondering what we were going to do about the plaster in the house we are now in! Did that joint compound and sanding work well? We are in an older house now, and I love the plaster walls…but they are in need of repair.
    Beautiful place, by the way, and wonderful blog!!
    Jen 🙂

  3. The Man permalink*
    December 12, 2009 11:01 pm


    I have been deputized by Deborah to respond to your question regarding the plaster since that particular task fell to me. The walls worked out well, but please keep in mind that I make no claim to special expertise. Joint compound shouldn’t be used as a full skim coat, it’s not all that hard; certainly not nearly so hard as plaster. That said, I used a very thin layer over the entire wall to fill the many pits and scratches then sanded down to a (relatively) flat surface leaving only as much compound as necessary. It’s a dusty job so I recommend wearing a very stylish dust mask which causes you to look surprisingly much like a surgeon (I’m not a doctor, but we sometimes play that at the Fairfield House).

    Be sure to use tape over every crack. Apply the joint compound over the tape and feather it into the wall using multiple thin coats sanding lightly in between layers. Without tape, the crack will reappear very quickly. I used a self-adhesive mesh tape for the job–it’s very easy to use and readily found in home improvement stores.

    We’re glad you enjoy the blog. Come back often (you can always help us sand the walls).

    Deborah’s Man

  4. Jennifer permalink
    December 13, 2009 8:32 am

    Thank You!!! I…think. Actually, you just made me want to make peace with the wallpaper that we inherited!
    No, really, I’m so glad to know what we are eventually in for. Our kitchen and laundry room are not papered; neither is our boy’s room. Or the guest room. So for now, I’m just calling the cracks in the walls “character”. Because character is good, right?!
    Have a blessed day!

    • The Man permalink*
      December 13, 2009 9:38 am

      One last thought I should have mentioned earlier: if the plaster in the areas around the crack is “loose”, then nothing can be done to repair it. I’m not talking about a piece falling out. Small areas can be patched with drywall without too much effort. However, if you can push on the plaster at a distance from the crack and feel it move in and out the plaster “keys” have broken off; it’s not holding to the wooden lath behind. This is easier to determine than I’m making it sound. When a whole wall is affected, you have little choice but to pull down both the lath and the plaster and put up drywall (or new plaster, of course). The good news is you get to insulate while you’re at it. Ripping down lath and plaster is not difficult, but it’s the dustiest job imaginable. Protect your lungs (no, really–protect your lungs). I’m no authority on this, but there’s plenty of information on plaster tear downs available on the web, such as the lively discussion here. Good luck.

  5. Jennifer permalink
    December 13, 2009 12:52 pm

    Excellent. I haven’t tested things too much, but I think we are relatively ok for now. I hope! What we do for charming houses, huh?!
    And Deb, I painted the chalkboard onto my wall-just taped off and went to town. It was fun! I used a magnetic primer (probably should have used more than the 2 coats I did, because it won’t hold really substantial things) then painted with the chalkboard paint. I can’t for the life of me remember the brands I used, but I did get both from Home Depot. I’m getting ready to tackle a new chalkboard area in our new house-can’t wait!
    And isn’t Maine wonderful? I’m a native New Mexican, but my heart belongs here. Nothing like the east coast. 🙂

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