Thursday, January 30, 2020

Impromptu Carpet Removal

Well… we’ve been back at work on the house again. We started by getting back to our bedroom restoration project. That has included, stripping the floor, starting to research colors of paint for the original door, stripping the door, and figuring out how to reframe the doorway to put the original door back. However, there will be a future blog post about all of that. Instead we are going to talk about how I convinced Jeremy to remove more carpet in the house, even after he said absolutely not before.  

This past weekend’s conversation went something like this:
Felicia: hmmm I wonder what the stairs look like under the carpet.
Jeremy: I’ve wondered that too.
Felicia: We could find out you know…..
Jeremy: ummm…..
Felicia: Don’t you want to know?
Jeremy: I guess I do.
Felicia: Let’s do it….
Jeremy: OK I suppose we can.
Felicia: Hey lets also take the landing carpet out too. Then we can see what the floor looks like and we have to do some work in that area with reframing the door anyways.
Jeremy: You said the stairs…..
Felicia: But we could have that little area of the house be historic again and just renovate that whole corner at once.
Jeremy: Ok that’ll work.
Felicia Well it’ll look dumb if we only do that part of the hallway… we should do the whole hallway.
Jeremy: ummm…..
Felicia: *stares at him*
Jeremy: ummm… ok, but we are NOT doing the spare bedroom or my office.
Felicia: ok J

So, this conversation is how we ended up ripping out the carpet on our stairs and our landing. We haven’t finished the hallway yet, but that’s on the docket for the weekend.

Stairs Before
Starting to remove the carpet!

The stairs took us around 2.5 hours to remove the carpet and pull out what must have been hundreds of staples. The stairs are currently red. They are also the first time that we found the obvious use of cut nails in our house.

Stairs without carpet

However, after looking past the previous owner’s sloppy painting, where he used the floor as a drop cloth… we realized that the stairs were actually cream on the sides and raw wood in the middle originally. This made us think that there may have been a runner on our stairs when the house was first lived in. Then, we found several carpet tacks along the path the carpet runner would have been laid. The carpet tacks are square tacks, another mid 19th century feature.

19th Century Carpet Tacks
Line of carpet tack marks

We do have 3 stairs that are cracked in half from 150 years of wear and tear. We will do some research and then repair those. We are still discussing what we will do with the stairs as far as painting vs runners.

Last night, we decided to tackle the landing floor. We pulled the carpet up and discovered a few more carpet tacks. Looking close to where those were found, we can see the lines of tiny holes where the carpet tacks once went. It appears the stairway runner ran up the stairs and to the wall. We also found a board that needs to be repaired and more paint from previous owner thrown all over the floor. 
Landing floor. This was originally a room, but a bathroom has been sectioned off.

We were able to pull the red paint up to see the original brown color of the floor. The floor has only been painted twice, both during the 19th century we believe. Originally it was brown and then it was painted the red you see in the photos.

Brown and red paint

We have decided to stay as true as possible to the original color of the floor, so it will be painted brown. We are going to try to get the original brown paint color matched and return it to the color it was originally, but first we have to get rid of the globs of white paint and make some repairs to the floor.

Friday or this weekend we will wrap up tearing out the rest of the carpet in the hallway and get ready to move on to the next restoration step for our bedroom/hallway.

What an adventure!

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