Thursday, June 6, 2013

Floors, a photo essay

Let's start with something pleasant, yes?  These are Margarita the Hummingbird's eggs.  They've hatched.  The wee birdies are not easy to photograph with a phone camera.
Here's my PAAAANK den, before I ripped out the carpet.

Here's where we found the tiles, and the tar beneath it.

Here's where we discovered the tar was here to stay.

Here is the plywood laid over the tar to keep me from collapsing into hysterics.

Here is my tack-strip removing toolkit.  That baby prybar is the jam, by the way.

Here is my dining room, with clean (ugly) tiles.
Here is my gold-painted paper, drying on the line.

Here is my paper from a weirder angle that makes it look like leather.

Here is my first attempt at the paper-bag flooring.

Here is the tar's opinion of this method.

Here is my solution to the tar's sudden reappearance.

Here is the golden paper-bag floor, take two.  Bigger pieces, smaller pieces to fill in the gaps later.


14 comments:

  1. Yay, project pics! Sorry it's not going so smoothly. Good luck, and I look forward to seeing the end result. :)

    Mini prybar is my favorite hand tool.

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    1. If it went smoothly, I'd be suspicious, and take it apart to see what godawful mistakes I was missing.

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  2. When you said you were doing a paper bag floor, I had no idea what you were talking about. But it looks amazing. Well, I mean it's going to look amazing once the tar quits interfering. So then you just varathane over it once it's done?

    Between a new paper bag floor and Bane's idea for refinishing the counter tops, I'll be busy all summer trying to fix up the old trailer. :D

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    1. Yup. Tear paper, crumple paper, smoosh poly on the back of paper till it's all rather wet, smush it on the floor and smooth it out, smear more poly on top, squish out all the wrinkles, and let dry. I find that it stays flatter if you don't overlap the pieces in the first pass- that's why there are gaps on my floor. The filler bits are going to be another layer. Once it's to your liking, you paint on a million layers of varathane. It's the varathane that makes it durable, not the paper. The paper is there just to give it some interest and texture. You can use any sort of paper- old book pages, origami paper, wrapping paper, whatever won't smear when you get it all poly'd up. Decoupage floor. I plan on throwing down a faint smattering of pink and red sakura blossom shapes made from tissue paper. Why not?

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    2. It's a brilliant idea, Tante. The pink and red blossoms will look fantastic, I bet. And it's not too expensive, because I definitely don't want to be spending a whack of money fixing up a 30-year old trailer. Talk about throwing your money down the toilet. :o)

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    3. The only thing that's slightly irksome is the fact that the paper is pretty dark. If you like dark floors, it's great, and a lot of people use stain on their paper to make it even darker and leatherier, but I like light floors, because The Cave really is quite cavelike. It's why I went with the gold spray- so it won't look so cavernous.

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  3. That tar sort of reminds me of the soot sprites from Totoro. Hang in there - it's going to look amazing, especially with the flowers. What is the tape for?

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    1. To keep the tar from seeping up through the cracks between the tiles and staining the paper. I found tar all over the interior of my metal tape measure today... another sacrificial offering to The Tar, it would seem.

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  4. I don't think I've ever seen such a technique before, but then, I don't know anything at all when it comes to home reno. Regardless, I'm very eager to see the results once you've got a handle on the tar.

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    1. I don't recall why I stumbled upon paper flooring, but it appealed to me. It would appeal to me more if I had any sort of time to finish what I started, but... ah, home improvement.

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  5. What did you put down on the tar to keep it from coming through?

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    1. It's just plain old masking tape on all the cracks between the tiles and up the wall where the wallboard meets the floor. On the floor without tiles, we plan to paint it all with latex stainblocking primer, which seems to be holding on a small patch we tested a few weeks ago.

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  6. So I have the weird cork flooring. Would this method work?

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    1. If there is any sort of flex to the floor, I'd say probably not. I'm in the process of removing this as we speak, as the tiles have the faintest flex at the joints (they're really old, and probably not stuck all the way down to the concrete in all places), and the paper is getting weird at the flex points. The red rosin paper that I applied directly to the Kilz-covered tarred concrete seems to be doing better. It's gotta be REALLY flat to work. Zero air pockets or bubbles, yanno?

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