The office, the den, the back room, the third bedroom – we don’t really have a consistent name for the rear room in our house. It’s technically a bedroom, I suppose, as it has a closet and plenty of room for a bed. But, with five windows, it’s the room in the house (besides the living room) with the most natural light. We use it as an office and a den. You may have seen bits and pieces of it before if you’ve read this post or this one. But, we never really took you from start to finish.
Here’s the room as it looked when we moved in:
Lace curtains and shaggy brown carpet rounded out the old folks’ look. Those drawers are from the kitchen cabinets (we were in the process of tearing them out when this picture was taken).
First, of course, we tore up the brown dated carpeting. We were optimistic about finding well-preserved hardwood floors underneath as we had already found that in the guest bedroom. What we found, though, was not so promising. Yes, there were hardwood floors somewhere under there, but immediately under the carpet was some sort of glued-down vinyl tile. We think this room must have been a breakfast nook or something in the recent past.
Undeterred, we broke out our floor scraper and set to work prying the tiles from the floor. The flooring actually came out fairly easily, it just left a glued down paper backing residue behind.
Here, you can see the paper bits glued to the oak flooring (similar to what we’re working on now with the back steps). I called the flooring guys we had previously scheduled to come in and redo the whole house, and they said we’d have to work at scraping it up as best we could or they’d have to bring in a heavy duty sander and up the price a bit. Try as we may, though, this stuff was too well-stuck, so we settled for coughing up a bit more dough to save our sanity.
Even after the hardwood floors were redone (which took this room a long way, for sure), we still had a lot left to do to get it to our liking.
This picture is from right after we moved in (hence all the boxes and junk stacked up). But it pretty accurately shows the dingy conditions of the walls, ceiling and trim. We ended up painting everything in here as well.
Here’s a breakdown of the projects we did on this room to bring it to its present state:
- repainted everything (trim, walls, ceiling);
- replaced the overhead light with a new ceiling fan;
- removed the lace curtains and installed bamboo blinds;
- installed a shelving system for books and a desk;
- patched and repaired the cracks in the walls and ceiling.
The room has come a long way towards our liking. We can show you its current state tomorrow – just as soon as we can snap a few pictures.