Drywall! Ceiling!

Last week, we didn’t have an update on the contractors progress – rather, we busied ourselves with projects that gave some instant gratification – but between then and now, a lot has changed. There were a handful of days where all work came to a grinding halt due to a prior job on their plates taking precedence (it was unexpected on our end, and I’ll admit that our hearts dropped knowing it was going to be that many more days tacked onto our completion date), and the drywall patching has taken a bit longer than even our head contractor, Mike, could have predicted.

But – did you catch that? Drywall!

Rooms and dividers and half-walls have all been patched back into place. Closets have back walls, arches have clean, smooth edges and – despite the horrid mess of tumbleweeds, mud and plastic sheeting all over our floors – we’re in the home stretch! Here’s where we last left off:

And now… ceilings! All is right again. After tearing them down to hoist the second floor back up, we finally (finally!) have a clean, smooth sheet of drywall over our heads – for the first time since July. While we visually lost a few inches in height, our main area feels larger, lighter and brighter than ever. There are no words to describe the happiness this brought into our home; not a one. Upon seeing it for the first time (once Scott came home from work and I walked downstairs), we were, literally, speechless.

The nook room opening has been smoothed out, and as we mentioned before, the new, larger doorway has allowed a whole new light source to shine into the living room. We’ve been discussing our plans for this room – we go back and forth constantly – but right now, we’re leaning towards the Music Room (in addition to the Kitty-Sun-Soaking-Room, naturally). Imagine this: built in record storage, a slide out drawer for our turntable and an ooshy, cushy chair under the window. Ooh, and definitely a rug that’ll feel like slippers.

So, about that arch. Remember, we had our doubts? (Despite our whole point of giving a nod towards the original architecture, we were still scared!) We’d walk back and forth, between the foyer and the living room. We’d literally tap our index finger on our chin – you know, very quizzical like – and go, hmmm. After it was roughly shaped in, we decided to stick with our initial instincts and run with it, and now? We can’t imagine not having it here.

Up the stairs, our knee wall supports have been hidden away by sheets of drywall, but not so high that it obstructs the view (and light!) from our hall window.

Looking towards the knee wall from the studio, you’ll see our soon-to-be storage room on the left (for paints, shipping supplies and – get this – a whole table to wrap packages on), and on the right, the second floor landing. Because we ripped up the carpet (well, there and up the entire stairway), we’ll eventually need to patch in the floor to match the rest of the hardwood. This area has seen quite a bit of action since move in day, don’t you think?

Now that all the drywall has been set in place, mudded and prepped for sanding, I’ve been sequestered to the front half of the studio. Because the majority of my time is spent painting your pets, we couldn’t risk having that fine dust settle into my work area, so after discussing options with Mike, we thought, well, hell! Let’s just Bubble Girl me. So far, so good. (I am used to small spaces, after all!)

And last but not least, the laundry room! With the drywall in place and all our hook-ups ready to go, it’s looking like we’ll be shopping for a washer and dryer sooner rather than later – although in reality, it’ll likely be a gently used set until we can save up for something shiny and new. But – laundry! A whole room!

Mike and his crew will start sanding this week, and after how far we’ve come – we’re nervous. The renovation dust has been unlike anything we’ve seen thus far, but from hearsay, we know this’ll take the cake. (I mean, right?) We’ve been waiting so impatiently for this day to come, and now that it’s here, we don’t know what to expect.

We’re excited. We’re anxious.

But most importantly, we’re counting down the days until we can walk – for the first time, ever – in our home without shoes.

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  • Helen - November 6, 2013 - 7:46 AM

    So much progress, and I’m so glad you kept the arch! I’d advise you guys (including animals) to be out of the house as much as possible during the sanding. When we drywalled our first house (ourselves – never again) we both sounded like we had consumption for weeks afterward. I would also just ask them to wet mop the job sight every single night until they are done. Drywall dust can make for some itchy paws!
    ps – don’t forget to change your furnace filter as soon as they are done!ReplyCancel

  • Kim - November 6, 2013 - 7:56 AM

    Helen, great advice! You better believe we’ll be all over that furnace filter. The only sad news is that we can’t be out of the house during the sanding… so perhaps it would be best to ask them to mop. (Will they even do that?!)ReplyCancel

  • Lucy - November 6, 2013 - 8:08 AM

    So very exciting to see the progress on your new home. It’s coming together so nicely. Can’t wait to see the finished product.ReplyCancel

  • Hannah K. - November 6, 2013 - 8:20 AM

    WOW – those before and “afters” – crazy progress! I cannot even imagine how excited you guys are to start talking PAINT!ReplyCancel

  • Julia [Chris Loves Julia] - November 6, 2013 - 8:20 AM

    Oh my goodness, this is so exciting!! That arch is such a winner. Home stretch!!!ReplyCancel

  • Laura at RatherSquare.com - November 6, 2013 - 8:56 AM

    What a difference! Does all that new drywall make you excited to start painting soon?ReplyCancel

  • Kim - November 6, 2013 - 9:03 AM

    Thanks, guys! Laura – ABSOLUTELY! We see a lot (a lot a lot) of painting in our future. We can’t forget about all the paint the basement still needs, too…ReplyCancel

  • Kati from so happy home - November 6, 2013 - 9:38 AM

    I’m with Helen – go to brunch, or take a long walk while they’re doing the sanding. Unless they have the special dust-free (or low-dust) tools (which are very expensive, and most contractors don’t bother) you’ll want to be well away from it. It’s not good for you, and it’s worth the extra delay in whatever you’re supposed to be doing.

    Just look at what our drywall guy looked like after he was done: http://www.sohappyhome.com/2010/08/and-it-rained-all-night/day-21-20/

    I’m so happy for you guys, though, that you can begin to see how the spaces will change now that you have walls and ceilings. It’s a remarkable difference.

    Congratulations on making it this far! Woo hoo!ReplyCancel

  • Gloria @ The Faceted - November 6, 2013 - 9:45 AM

    Ah! Getting so excited for you guys! It looks amazing and I can practically see it decorated already! I would like to fast forward time for my greedy eyes to see what you have in store for it because I love every.single.thing.that.you.do. not creepy…ReplyCancel

    • Kim - November 6, 2013 - 1:02 PM

      Haha, Gloria, not creepy – we wouldn’t mind fast forwarding a bit sometimes also!ReplyCancel

  • Carolyn - November 6, 2013 - 9:49 AM

    That is one gorgeous arch. Makes me want to spend some serious time debating how to do that with the doorway from our entryway to living room, even though a duct resides right above it. It can’t be that hard to move, right?ReplyCancel

  • Jodi - November 6, 2013 - 10:25 AM

    SO EXCITING!!!ReplyCancel

  • Nicole S. - November 6, 2013 - 10:40 AM

    I’ll make a plug for Abt’s 0% interested financing – it’s the only way I outfitted my Logan Square foreclosure with a house full of appliances when we bought! It was a life-saver! And we went for Maytag front loaders, and I love them. Just some neighborly advice. Love following along.ReplyCancel

    • Kim - November 6, 2013 - 12:17 PM

      Kati, yikes! Hmmm, to be honest, we don’t really have anywhere to go, since I do paint here – especially not for 3 or 4 straight days! We’ll have to talk to Mike and crew and see what he suggests. So far, the safety of my bubble has been good though!

      Carolyn, we actually have a duct in the foyer, right above the arch! Our contractors were able to take the middle of the arch all the way up to the bottom of the duct. You can do it!

      Nicole, our neighbor suggested the same thing! We may have to look into that. Thanks for the suggestion!ReplyCancel

  • Sarah @ 702 Park Project - November 6, 2013 - 1:15 PM

    I’m in love with those archways! So much character! :)ReplyCancel

  • Emily @ Adventures of a Dog Mom - November 6, 2013 - 4:07 PM

    Wow, I’d say that’s a lot of progress, it looks amazing!ReplyCancel

  • Rachel - November 6, 2013 - 5:24 PM

    Ahh I’m so excited for you guys! You must be thrilled!!! Can’t wait to see everything all cleaned up and painted someday :)

    Also, not sure what the craigslist appliance market is like in Chicago, but that’s where I got our washer and dryer… and although I was going for something uber cheap, on our local CL I always see TONS of nicer ones (front loaders, etc.) for much less than new appliances. Definitely made me think that even when I can afford it, there’s no way I’ll go brand new on those particular items! So I hope you have equally good luck :) Oh man, having in-unit laundry is THE BEST.ReplyCancel

  • Kim - November 7, 2013 - 7:11 AM

    Rachel, good point. I suppose we shouldn’t count out CL for even a nicer washer and dryer! We couldn’t be more excited to have a WHOLE room for laundry, storage, ironing boards, baskets… wow, who knew I’d ever say that?ReplyCancel

  • Julia @ Cuckoo4Design - November 7, 2013 - 8:10 AM

    Drywall makes it all better. Looks amazing! But yes the dust will be like nothing you have seen before. It’s pretty awful ;) Hang in there!ReplyCancel

  • Michelle - November 7, 2013 - 12:42 PM

    So excited for you guys! And dying to see what you do with your place once all the construction dust clears. :-)ReplyCancel

  • someone has a ceiling! | - January 23, 2014 - 10:19 PM

    […] the drywall went up here […]ReplyCancel

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