Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Catch Up

Spring is here and I can finally feel the constriction of winter ease up. We are two weeks away from taking off the storm windows. The Siberian squill are poking their heads up in the backyard and in another week or two, there will be a wash of blue throughout the woods. The tulips and day lilies are coming up. Over the weekend, I saw a bat flying around the front yard, finding whatever insects are available at this time of year. I called out to him ("Come here Bruce"), but he didn't respond. I suspect that my voice wasn't high pitched enough.

The weekend before last, my parents came down to stay with us for five days and get a few house projects done. The two main projects were to get the office fixed up and to try and figure how to insulate the attic.

The office plaster was not in very good shape and needed a fair amount of patching. After a lot of experimentation (and peeking inside the truck of our plastering contractors), I've finally found the right material for patching plaster in the house. Diamond Veneer Basecoat and Diamond Veneer Finish. Now I just need to improve on my technique. I'm getting closer to doing seamless patching, but I'm not there yet. I'm certainly not comfortable doing any patching in the living room or dining room, and ceilings just plain stink. The only downside to the new plaster is that it is a lime based plaster, and it is very alkaline. It is hell on my hands.

Fixing up the office meant peeling off as much of the loose paint as possible, patching the plaster, priming the fresh plaster and then finally applying the final color. I'm happy with the room, except for the ceiling, and I don't have anyone to blame for that, except myself.

All that is left is to put the picture rail back up. The previous owner took it off many years ago and stored in the basement. After years of sitting in the 100% humidity of the basement, some of the picture rail is quite warped, so before I put it back up, I need to strip the paint off of it and try to straighten it. If anyone has any suggestions on ways to straighten warped boards, I'm all ears.

Here is the office, with the new wood desk we picked up from Craigslist.

P.S. from Ms. Huis Herself: Yeah, just so y'all know - there's a lot more stuff in it now!


ShoNuff said...

Go pick up a board staightener at the hardware store.

That is the practical joke you play on people... if you weren't already getting that.

There isn't really a good way to sraighten a board that has warped. The best thing I know is to force it into place where it is straight and lock it in a lot. The only other thing I can imagine s to wet areas (soaking with water not just damp) and then locking into straight with many clamps... but I'm not sure that would work... it is how you do twists with wicker and the like though.

Pusher said...

The office looks gorgeous!

Mr. Kluges said...

I came across a few articles on how to straighten warped wood. I'll let you know what I find out.