Sunday, April 11, 2010

Butler's Pantry

We've lived in our home for four years now and one of the first "rooms" I remodeled was the butler's pantry. Unfortunately the original photos of the pantry are lost, but imagine a small room with white/red gingham print wallpaper with chipped 4" x 4" bathroom tiles on the counter and floor. I walk around barefoot and the second I sliced my foot open on a chipped tile, that was it. I donned a mask and went to the floor to break up all the tile. I discovered several layers of flooring and was ecstatic to see fir floor underneath it all! So while my husband was away on a business trip, I got the blow dryer out and a scraper and slowly peeled away the vinyl flooring/glue after the tile was removed. I'm not sure what chemicals I inhaled (don't want to know either) but it took me an entire week to remove the vinyl. I rented a floor sander and sanded the floors to the original fir wood floor.

My husband was thrilled with the results when he returned home but hated the fact that the floor was still 3/4" higher than the dining room floor. So after all my hard work, he grabbed a crow bar and ripped up the fir floor. We found another layer of fir floor underneath and were perplexed why they covered it up until we realized that the wood floor was very thin in that area. So it all got ripped up to the joists and we installed (new) handscraped teak flooring. All that careful work I went to scraping up the glue was for nothing. Damn.

But I'm happy with the results as the floor doesn't "flex" when you walk into the room, I raised the height of the counter by 6" (how short were the original owners?) and added granite counters and subway tile. I removed the gingham wallpaper and installed new sheetrock and painted the walls "Green Tea" by Devine Paint. I was able to salvage most of the original hardware but was missing the cabinet latches but found exact reproductions of it from Antique Hardware.

I still want to add a bar sink as there is plumbing hidden in the cabinetry, but for now I'm happy with the results.

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