Archive for the ‘DIY’ Category

Front Door, Finished

Monday, August 23rd, 2010

The front door needed a few final tweaks to make it the bomb shit. We patched up the old hinge holes left after the screen door was removed and slapped on a few final coats of paint.

Pur-tty. Like they were never there.

You know what fills an old hinge hole really well? Paint stir sticks from Home Depot. We’ve patched a fair amount of old hinge holes using stir sticks and somehow they are the perfect width and depth. Trim it to height, glue it in the hole, nail it, wood filler, sand it down and BAM! No more old hinge hole.

The door is looking pretty snazzy. We planned on painting the porch on Sunday but it was soooo hot and I was so exhausted. Sunday marked the end of my long summer work schedule, so I’m free, free to work on the house on the weekends again!

Instead of working on anything though we just ended up lounging in the tank pool and watching True Blood.

Even with all the frustration of fixing and patching the front door instead of getting a new one, I’m pretty happy with the result. We have four more doors to install in the back of the house, and we will definitely go the new route. Now finding affordable modern single light glass doors is the new goal.

I can’t wait to landscape, it’s long overdue. The front of the house is looking so sexy that the weeds are kind of like Alexander Skarsgard with a shirt on. Totally ruins the view.

Front Door

Wednesday, August 18th, 2010

Screw you ugly screen door. Screw you big weird hole.

We finally got motivated and figured out how to fix the big hole in the front door – which means the front door is going to rehab.

Screw you as well stupid Realtor lock box.

The Boy made a little custom wood chunk to fill the giant hole below the doorknob. He puttied it up with some wood filler and then proceeded to fill a bunch of wonky holes throughout to get it primed for painting.

Sand sand sand. Patch patch patch.

Then we tried painting the door and…disaster.

It looks terrible.

Smooth roller + Behr exterior True Black in a semi-gloss = WTF. It’s ugly finish city. It was the same combo we used for the garage doors. So what went wrong?

I don’t know. I googled and googled to no avail.

As a last resort I spoke with the paint guy at Home Depot. He said it was a drying problem; the paint was drying too quickly and we weren’t putting enough paint on the roller as well as pressing too hard. Therefore, bad finish.

Since we were sanding things down and calling a do over, I decided we needed to patch up the peep hole. We had a big ornate brass thing that just wasn’t going to work with the more modern hardware we were installing. The Boy and I argued back and forth about its inclusion, and in the end The Boy cut and fit another custom chunk of wood to seal that eyesore up forever. More wood filler, more sand sand sand and BAM, solid door.

Here is the final interior after repainting and installing the new hardware. I settled on Emteks Stuttgart Lever which was $55 and a specially sized 1-1/2″ Schlage B560P deadbolt for about $35. Why the weird small deadbolt that is super expensive? Well, we tried to bore out our other exterior doors to fit a standard deadbolt and it was a complete nightmare. A nightmare I swore we would not repeat. Too bad I forgot that satin nickle is not the same color as satin chrome. Both the handle and deadbolt only offered either finish, so that means no shared finish color. Damn this door and all its stupid complications!

The deadbolt did fit like a dream, BTW.

We still need to patch and paint the exterior molding and door jamb. Oh, and paint the cement porch. At least that screen door is dead and gone.

See the lovely lumps on the upper left of the door reflecting all weird? You can totally feel them undulating under your hand. UGH. These were yet another thing contributing to the weird finish. They are not lovely lady lumps, but bizarre rolling mounds. They make me crazy.

I give up, we are calling it done. Stupid old fucked up door.



It works. I am so done screwing around with it. Better this than a big stupid hole in the door filled with spiders.

Now we need a large modern planter next to the door with some sort of cactus. Then porch paint. Hardscape. New fence. Gate. Landscape. Mailbox. Edging. And then on and on and on and on…

House Numbers

Monday, July 5th, 2010

One of the first things I purchased for The Brick House was a set of Neutra address numbers. Not from DWR but from a fancy schmancy modern home design shop in Palm Springs. The numbers have since sat in a drawer for over two years…taunting me with their acceptable streamlined modernity. I didn’t know what the hell we were doing with the remodel but I for some fucking reason NEEDED rad house numbers to make it feel authentic.

Now that the house is (finally) almost painted, it was about time to slap those babies into place. We started by lining up the templates provided and struggled to get everything square and level.

We used a cheap hammer drill to punch some 7/8″ holes in the concrete block – the paper template also had a handy guide for where the holes needed to be punched.

Once the holes were drilled and the numbers readied, we squeezed silicone caulk into the crevasses and inserted the threaded rods attached to the backside of each number. The painters tape held everything in place while the caulk dried for 24 hours.

BAM! Address numbers.

When removed the tape they didn’t fall out or anything! In fact they are quite sturdy – thank you included instructions.

The threaded rods have spacers in order to float the numbers off the wall. We picked this install spot since it would be comfortably visible from the street, illuminated when the porch light was on and not blocked by the slat screen.

I’m so sick of that awful screen door. I cannot tell you how much I am DYING to rip it off and restore the front door. We still need to repair the door – get new hardware and paint the whole thing black. Then finally I will burn that fugly screen door.

All the vents still need to be painted and a color needs to be picked for the patio…then hardscape…then landscape…then sell this place…

It’s been years since I bought those expensive numbers and guess what – Home Depot came out with a set of floating modern house numbers that are only $5.99 each. The Boy likes to point them out every single time we walk by the address aisle. Yeah – I’m an asshole, but I love my numbers.

It’s good though, because those Home Depot cheapies are going on our custom mailbox.