Friday, November 16, 2007

How cheap can be brilliant

When we first moved here to 2742 we mooned over how clean and beautiful this house was. We loved the paint schemes of the rooms that actually had color and we marveled at how the previous owners had kept the place so immaculate. Now WE have lived here for four months. Some of the rooms have lost their luster. The dining room in particular had become an issue.

First off, we did not own dining room furniture for at least a month. We made do with a card table for quite a while then purchased our kitchen table. The dining room table (not pictured here) was a steal of a deal find on Craigslist. Check table off the list. Then we changed the hideous gold chandelier to this lovely black number by painting it with textured black spray paint. We have done some serious HGTV watching. Next the cheap metal blinds came down and these lovely curtains went up. The organza came from IKEA and the fabric for the drapes also came from IKEA and I did a quick stitch to make these curtains. Almost done.

Unfortunately we had white-ish carpet - which wouldn't have been so horrible except for Little Dog. Little Dog had not completely been housebroken when we moved here. I find the smaller the dog, the more difficult potty training can be. Little Dog in particular was a pisser (literally sometimes) and he relieved himself regularly on the dining room floor. I could never completely get the smell out. I used an entire gallon of Natures Miracle to no avail. The carpet had to come up. Those of you who know my disdain for carpet know how ready I was to get rid of it.

So, one day when I had enough I ripped up the carpet and tossed it out. Too bad when they put it in they nailed the stripping to the concrete and I took up chunks when I pried the stripping out. Not to mention the fact that when the painters initially painted they managed to spill large amounts of paint on the concrete floor. Not pretty.

We lived like this for another month or so then finally had to do something about our concrete dining room floor. Laminate floor would be ideal but the kitchen and living rooms already have two different color laminates, I couldn't convince my husband to do the manual labor, and we didn't have the budget for it. So, we went cheaper.

HGTV has shown a couple of home owners who have stained their concrete floors. Brilliant! We had to do some sanding, some patching, some moving out of furniture, some airing out of the house, and some dusting off concrete dust, but the final project looks great. Cheaper worked out for us in this case. A beautiful sand color and the floor has new life. Eventually (read years from now) if we have the budget we will redo the whole bottom story laminate flooring but for now the concrete works. And I feel pretty smart for thinking of it.

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