It's Only Life After All (Part One - The Wall(s))

  • I'm sitting in the middle of a half-rearranged living room. I swear one day I will have this house the way I want it, but with all the renovations I have been performing in the last ten months, nothing has been able to be the way I want it to be --- yet. 

    I have finally ALMOST finished adding in a master bedroom. Here's a picture of the house as I first bought it (as an old bank building) - I've outlined in purple the alcove to the side that housed part of the back office once. The kitchen (straight ahead/to the left side at the back) was already installed thank goodness. That would have felt far too overwhelming for me to tackle. 

    Here's the view from the other direction from within the alcove:

    The stairs to the basement were covered by a hatch that required access to the alcove... and some sort of ridiculous shelving as well. The stairs down were too steep and uneven as well. Also, the stairs blocked access to the second vault door. 

    I wanted to make this alcove the master bedroom, and make the old bank vault a huge walk-in closet. This involved:

    • ripping out the cupboard and the stair hatches. 
    • putting in new joists over the hole left by the stairs
    • ripping out the rest of the floor (or choosing to patch the floor hole with matching flooring, which I could not find). 
    • Putting down a new floor. 
    • Cutting in new stairs at the opposite end of the room (cutting the hole in the floor, constructing the stairs down)
    • Putting up a wall across the alcove (framing, electrical, drywall)
    • Putting up a wall between the bedroom part of the alcove and the stairs. 
    • Putting in new lighting for the room. 
    • Install doors. 

    I outsourced the electrical and the framing for the first wall. Also the stairs down (although I have to rebuild the bottom part of those). I did the rest myself, with some labor help from friends on occasion. I had to outsource the electrical twice - I was happy to make a new friend who was an electrical engineer (without the journeyman's apprenticeship part) - and so far I have had to have all but one thing redone. Sigh. 

    I was racing my Momma's moving date. Fortunately, she was slow in packing her stuff. I got the master bedroom barely finished for her (there are still some edge carpet tiles to cut) ten minutes after I was supposed to leave to pick her up from the airport. 

    In October I just about finished the outer wall. Today I started putting in the baseboards, and then a little spackling and a bit more trim for the bathroom door to match the other doors, and I'm done. Yayyyy! I will try to add a photo of it sometime. 


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