Tuesday, April 15, 2014

DIY craftsman window trim

WHOOT! I finally tackled a DIY project that I’ve been wanting to do FOREVER. But I was afraid…so afraid. I am excited to share it with you – there are a lot of pics so grab some coffee or a Coke and enjoy. :)

In addition to beefy baseboards and door trim, my dream has always been to add chunky trim around our windows. It just adds SO much character, I just love it. But all these years I haven’t been able to do it because our window sills weren’t wide enough. A long time ago I realized I could add some very skinny trim around the window that would match up with the sill:

This is a before I shot quickly before I started three days ago when it was 80 degrees and gorgeous. Today it’s 32 and snowy. But I digress.

To do the trim I wanted to do I’d have to take the whole sill (or stool, as it’s technically called) off and that intimidated me. But then I saw Cristina’s tutorial last summer and I thought it wouldn’t be as bad as I thought. I ended up following her instructions and they worked perfectly!

I actually wanted to do this SO badly at Christmas after we got our tree up. I thought it would look so lovely to have the beefy trim on the windows, but I reeled it in and realized starting this in December was not the best idea. ;)

Fast forward a few months and I finally started! First up, I removed the apron underneath the sill. Fun story – in the CRAZY cold we had this winter the window was iced up and when it melted it went into the wall. That area below the apron was a big bubble of water. Good stuff!:

So first you need to score all the areas (with a razor) that are caulked, otherwise when you pull the trim off it will pull the paint/drywall away:

removing window trim

I freaked for a split second when I pulled it off and thought there was mold:

But it was just overspray from when the room was painted years ago. :) Whew.

Here’s where I forgot to take a pic, but after the apron is gone, you take a crow bar and start pulling up the stool, or the sill. It was actually MUCH easier than I thought it would be. I mean, I’ve stood on these things – I thought they’d be impossible to remove. But they came up pretty fast and easy.

The only issue I had was the ends would start digging into the drywall as I pulled up:

When I worked on one end at a time (instead of trying to pull the whole thing up at once) it helped a bunch. I just focused on one side and got that up and clear of the drywall, then got the whole thing out. I do have to touch up a little drywall there but it’s not bad.

This is the shape of our stool when it was out:

removing window stool

And here’s what it looks like underneath:

removing window sill

I was actually AMAZED that we didn’t have any water issues – our windows get condensation every winter if we don’t adjust our humidifier in the HVAC system just so. And they were covered in ice more than once this past winter. This shows the power of glossy paint and caulk my friends!

After all that I took the skinny trim off the sides of the windows:

removing trim

I kept that all for future projects. I’ve used it on all of the wainscoting in this room.

Then I started the process of building up the new trim. I shared this image when I did my first craftsman door trim and it is so helpful:

  craftsman window trim

I can’t find their size used for the fillet, so I use a trim piece called stop instead. It works great.

Also, our window sills are deeper so I had to use 1 x 8 wood instead of the standard 1 x 5. I followed Cristina’s instructions and used the old sill as my guide for the new one. The only thing you need to keep in mind is your trim that will be on the sides of the windows – mine was 3 1/2 inches and I wanted the stool to stick out a bit from that, so I traced the original onto the new wood, but gave myself four inches:

craftsman window trim how to

Here’s how it looks installed so that makes more sense:

craftsman window trim how to

I followed my traced lines with a jigsaw to cut it out. Don’t worry if the lines aren’t perfect!:

craftsman window trim how to

They will be mostly covered with the new apron and the trim on each side of the window. The parts that aren’t covered are easily fixed with caulk. (My BFF.):

craftsman window trim how to

Putting up the trim is my favorite part! Seeing it come together is awesome. You’ll notice in that pic above that I had to pull off some other trim – more on that in a minute.

I took my sander to the edges of the new sill because this pine has really sharp edges. I do this on all of the door trim I’ve installed too:

I just knock it down a little so it’s not so pointy. If you have a router this would be even better. Then I did one coat of primer and two coats semi gloss paint on everything. I may go back over the stool with a high gloss just to make sure it’s waterproof.

So when I was putting the new trim up I realized the wainscoting I installed years ago was going to be in the way – I had to pull off each box on the wall and reinstall it all to make the new trim work. Total pain in the butt.

Some of it you can’t see, but some areas I still need to putty, sand and paint again:

craftsman window trim

I still need to touch up that area that was a bubble of water too. :)

But that will come later because for now I’m enjoying the new window trim that I love! Whoo hoo!:

beefy trim around windows

I had to pull the chair rail down to do it and I’ve wanted to replace it for a while anyway, so I started installing a new simpler rail:

trim around windows

I only have one wall done so far. I can’t BELIEVE how different the room looks with the beefier trim around the windows.

I took the drapes down before Christmas (you know, thinking I would do this back then), and I don’t know if I can put any back up:

craftsman window trim how to

We’ll see. :)

Here’s a closer look at how the new chair rail, reinstalled wainscoting and new window trim works together:

DIY wainscoting

I still need to clean up the walls a bit like I said, and caulk around the trim up higher, but for now I’m calling it good!:

thick trim around windows

I took one of these images and detailed the wood I used:

how to install new window trim

That should help if you’d like to try this yourself! Remember the 1x2 and stop up on top and the stool on the bottom will be a bit wider than the other pieces. The ones on top are 1/4 inch longer on both sides and the stool on the bottom is 1/2 longer on both ends.

Here’s a shot of the before again:

And here’s the after:

DIY craftsman window trim

Now…I just need to find someone to add the trim to the upper windows. Cause this girl is not doing it. :)

Have you beefed up your window trim? Like everything else, it will take me years to get it done throughout the whole house, but this start makes me happy! Big props to Cristina for her awesome post that gave me the courage to tackle this one! And if you have any questions let me know in the comments – I tried to cover everything but I always forget something.

Monday, April 14, 2014

Home, to me

I’m feeling a bit nostalgic lately, so bear with me today. :) I’m coming up on two big anniversaries of sorts – by next month I will be blogging for SIX years. Crazy. And next week it will be ten years that we’ve owned our home. I can’t even believe it. Ten years and six months ago this is what it looked like:

Having my child, marrying my husband and building our house – three of the most exciting times in my life. :)

So every once and awhile I think about what I do, this blogging about houses thing, and I wonder how important it is in the scheme of life. As you can imagine it can feel materialistic at times, because decorating is often about STUFF. Adding stuff, moving stuff, spray painting stuff.

Does all of that matter? No. But I’ve realized over my years of writing about our home and others that your home and how you feel in it absolutely does. It’s nothing compared to our health, well being and family, but to me home means SO much.

I say this a lot but I mean it with every fiber of my being – your home should be your haven. It should be the one place where you feel safe. Our homes are so much more than buildings and the stuff we buy to fill them up. I think people often confuse a love of houses with a love of things. It’s not that at all, at least not for me.

My first apartment out of college.

Sure, the things are fun. (Have you been to HomeGoods??) But it’s the act of fluffing and adding and tweaking that makes me even happier.

The fact that we’ve lived her for ten years is mind-boggling to me. Truly. Before this home the longest I had lived in the same home/apartment/dorm was two years. Well, I take that back – we lived in an apartment before this house for four years. But before that for my 24 years of life I moved at least every two years.

Our first apartment. I dragged that tree up the stairs by myself.

I didn’t mind it as a kid – I’m sure I did at the time but I don’t remember it. The only time I was sad about leaving a house was when we left this farmhouse. And when I was older and had deeper roots and closer friends I wasn’t changing schools when we moved, just houses.

I have no desire to leave this house. It makes me tear up at the thought of it. It makes me wildly happy that my son has been raised her since day one -- that’s how my husband grew up and the thought of it was so foreign to me. There’s nothing wrong with moving a lot – you gain a special set of life skills from it. But if I could choose I’d want my kiddo to live here till he leaves for college. :)

My dorm room for two years. Cat posters rule.

I have a deep connection to our home for many reasons – because everything about houses is a passion of mine, obviously. I could watch, read and breathe house stuff all. day. long. But it’s because home feels like a part of our family to me. It’s the joy of having a home base. That is so easily taken for granted! 

I went through a time of about eight months (that I touched on here) when “home” was my dorm, motel rooms and my best friend’s house. That stays with you forever. There were a few times in my childhood when things hit bottom and my mom was struggling to get back up – one of those time we lived in our friend’s basement. My mom, sister and I lived in their basement (we used a bedroom, kitchen and bathroom) for a year.

As a kid it wasn’t a big deal. It’s only now that I look back and feel sadness for those times. Sadness because I now know my mom wanted so much for us at the time. But I’m also grateful, I don’t wish any moment of my life away.

Our duplex after after the basement.

This little walk down memory lane is just to say that I think our homes matter. Sometimes working on them can feel trivial, but my goodness – it’s not. Home is everything. Home is what you make it. Home doesn’t have to be perfect – making it what you want is the JOY of it! Even if it takes you 30 years to get it the way you want, how lucky are you? So lucky.

Over the next few weeks I’ll be talking about a few things “home” – my thoughts and recommendations on building a house, what I would do differently and the same and reflecting on some of my favorite rooms over the ten years in our home. Lots and before and after pics – my favorite!

Thanks for letting me look back today. :)