Sunday, September 7, 2008

Fake Plastic Trees

A green plastic watering can
for a fake chinese rubber plant
in fake plastic earth...
Fake Plastic Trees, by Radiohead, from the album The Bends, 1995

 I came home this week with a load of laminate fake wood floor plank samples. Although the entry hall, small hall and dining room all have the original heart pine floors, the rest of the floors at Garvinweasel remind me of this mess we're in.

 Two rooms across the back of the original house were created from a porch, with the floor built at an angle to encourage water runoff. The conversion left the angle, creating rooms that felt like a carnival funhouse. Resisting the urge the install distortion mirrors and flashing lights, I decided instead to level the floors. My framing carpenter fabricated counter-angled mini-joists over the angled floor and attached an OSB subfloor, which has been begging for covering now for way too long.

 I also brought home some wide plank pine boards. I thought I could paint, stain or lime these, maybe different treatments for different rooms or sections of the house. I looked at poplar planks and thought they looked like Axel Vervoordt's style, my favorite. I did some google research on poplar and first found that it is rated too soft for floor use. Then I saw Axel Vervoordt's Venice apartment on Topsy Turvy Style, and read that he used poplar wide plank floors in the living room. I also found a source for reclaimed wood floors that stocks poplar, and another source for 'hardened, distressed' poplar flooring, so it's definitely under consideration. The fake plastic boards, however, are not.

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Once In A Lifetime

And you may tell yourself This is not my beautiful house! 
And you may ask yourself - well, how did I get here?
- Once In A LifeTime by Talking Heads, from the album Remain In Light, 1980

How did I get here? I ask myself that a lot lately. It's been almost three years since moving into an antebellum farmhouse that I though just needed a little paint and some updated flooring. I was wrong.  My dream was move a bit out of the city, but still close enough to commute. Plant a garden, read by a fire, the country air and all of its joys. Now living among an elcectic melange of crash pad, design lab, recording studio, hardware and tool supply and indoor lumberyard. I've decided to chronicle the trials, tribulations and occasional triumphs in an effort to make some sense of it all, and hopefully unwind from the seemingly endless cycle of design/plan/source/demolish/build/repeat. A sort of online cocktail... two parts personal journal, one part DIY reality tv, a dash of "don't let this happen to you" advice, a whisper of design inspiration, shake well and serve. Over ice (it's hot down here).  Relax and enjoy.