Making our 4 Bedroom into a 3-who says it won’t add value?!

12 03 2010

Up until now, we have been just dipping our big toes into our new home remodel testing out the water, but in the next project that was all about to change.  We decided it was lame just dipping our toes into the remodeling, so we did a cannon ball from the high dive and got it over with (metaphorically)…we tore down a wall.  A concern of mine in the beginning was that the master bedroom only kind of had a closet.  It was located in our bathroom which is shared jointly with the rest of the bedrooms on the upper level.  Knowing me and my shopping habit, this was just not going to be enough space.  So our decision to change the little room off the master that was formerly called “the nursery” seemed ideal.  Here was our thought process when everyone under the sun asked us ‘is tearing out a room really a value added move?’

A. It’s a townhome, why does it really  need 4 rooms? and B. What exactly do you do with a blank x blank room.

It was way too small for a guest room (unless you want to stay on bunk beds and even then would have been REALLY tight) and basically too small for an office.  A question I ask is: what do you do with a room that has been designated as a nursery during the years you don’t have someone to fill it?  We also had 2 other rooms that would act as our guest room and an office so making it our closet was an ideal move for us.  I am a firm believer in making your home for yourself and how you need the home to function for you, but I do always try to be mindful of what future buyers will expect as well.

First, we started out by measuring and scoring the drywall so we would have a clean line to work with later on the remaining part of the wall.  Since we were planning on mounting our television to the stub wall that contained the wardrobes on the back side we measured out the length of the wall to fit our television.  Above is Ian (a good friend of ours that helped us during our remodel on the weekends since he was in LA working for an architecture firm that summer) scoring our gyp. board.  Notice he is using a vent cover as his straight edge?!  Sometime you have to use whatcha got at the moment.

Next was the big moment (well for us) where there is no turning back…hammers in.

Now had we realized that a couple years down the road I would be showing this picture to lots of people we may have made an attempt to look a little less grubby, but we didn’t.  So here I am with my ‘working on the new house uniform’ that I wore daily and John has on his ‘cut off the sleeve of my old t-shirt hair tie’.  I must say that this moment truly felt like Sarah Jessica Parker walking into her walk-in closet from Mr. Big during the Sex in the City movie.  That moment just made it all feel like this was REALLY happening.  If you are not sure what I am referencing you can check it out here.

So we started to make progress on the removal of the wall board:

So while we are swinging away hammers at our end, since there is no rules to pounding out drywall.  Ian is working away at the meticulous job of taking out gypsum board next to the score line.

And what do we do once our holes get a bit bigger… we had to pose with our handy work.  Maybe its just me but it seems like your house  just isn’t a home till you put a hammer through one of its walls.

So we finished the wall on ‘the nursery’ side and this is what it looked like.Before I go any further, as we tore into the wall both Ian and I, with degrees in architecture for him and interior design for me, did a double take on this diagonal 2×4.  We both looked at it, scratched our heads, asked the question that we had so thoughtfully worked out before taking on this endeavor, that this wasn’t a load bearing wall.  But when we saw that diagonal brace we hoped we had made the correct assessment.  We had.  This was just a method the builder used to “shore up” the wall as my well versed architect friend verified for us.  Anyway, on to the other side of the wall.  This time John thoughtfully measured a line to score the bedroom side, while Ian got started punching a hole through the wall.

Now this picture conjure up a couple questions in my mind.  Why would I ever allow my beautiful golden dog to be subjected to acoustic ceiling scraped leftovers that she laid in for days (i am certain digesting some of it into her system) and who ever came up with the phrase “designer vertical blinds?!”  Anyway, this is one of my favorite pictures from all of our days working in our little abode.

So we labored and labored, what am I saying, this was the best part of the whole thing tearing stuff out.  And we came up with this.

And finally this…

And today this is how it looks:

We patched the drywall about a week later after we installed the floating ceiling I told you about in this post.  So now that the wall was down we patched in the door since how many doors do you need to one room and it would have interfered with our wardrobes.

So above is the before we patched it, and under is the much, much later after the whole project is done of that same wall.  You would never know that there had previously been a door there.  Plenty of things have changes between then and now but we will go over all that in the weeks to come.

Now, I wish I had documented the building of the wardrobes that complete our closet addition, but I didn’t.  I think by the time we moved into our new place I was pretty much sick of working on the house and really didn’t want to document the journey as closely as I had been.  So between moving in and the next year or so of our lives things didn’t get photographed nearly as complete as the first several projects.  Next posting I do on our house will be about the painting.  And trust me when I say…we did a ton of it!!

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