Bottom’s up

I mentioned the other day, and waaaaay back here that we had new floors installed in the house (now our old house).

It was such a worthwhile project and really made a difference in the space. The carpet was umm… well-loved. And had seen its fair share of traffic and wear and tear. It was the only route to or from our deck and had had many hours of play, laundry, movie nights and regular family life to put up with. It was time for a change.

This is what the room was looking like before we tore out the carpet.

Family room


Family Room 2




Family room 4

You can really see the beating it took in that last photo above. The carpet was pretty badly stained in spots.

Since our kitchen and foyer floors had been updated at some point by the previous owners to hardwood, we wanted to keep that continuity going rather than going with something completely different or trying to get a close match. Luckily the previous owners had left us all the details of the house including the details of any updates they made. So all it took was a Google search for the name and brand of flooring and then looking for a local distributor.

Actually, we even knew who had provided and installed our kitchen floor so we started with them first. But it turns out they were in the process of closing their business so our emails and phone calls went unanswered. We thought we were getting the runaround. But it turns out they weren’t closed enough to have had their phone disconnected or their website down, but they weren’t checking or responding either. (We learned all of this when we found another distributor who had the inside scoop on the flooring gossip).

Once we finally found our guy, who was not closed,  we paid his showroom a visit just to be sure of the match and we decided that since we were tearing up flooring in the family room, why not do the garage entrance/hallway/powder room/laundry room that is on that level too?

Just your typical project snowball effect.

One thing that didn’t take us long was to decide on our flooring. We chose a large scale vinyl tile. But it’s not just any tile, its groutable vinyl tile, designed to look just like stone or ceramic including the grout lines! We had seen it installed in a family member’s house and loved it for the look, durability, and practicality. It’s just like stone or ceramic but a lot warmer under foot. And even though we weren’t doing the installing this time, if you’re thinking about DIY-ing it, it is also very easy to work with for installation.

The vinyl tile was selected for the garage entrance (landing spot), the hallway, the powder room located in that area, and through to the laundry room. That whole area had the original laminate flooring from when the house was built in the 80s. It was in pretty good condition given the age of the house, but it was certainly dated, and in the more trafficked areas was starting to show hints of wear.

We decided to have the existing carpet removed and the floors installed by the supplier, so that we didn’t have to worry about calling in friends for help, or just generally making time to do it ourselves.

What we did decide to do ourselves was repaint the walls in the hallway, powder room and laundry room – which included removing wallpaper in the powder room and laundry room.

powder room 1


powder room 2

We also painted and installed all the trim for the family room, hallway, powder room and laundry room. We installed a new toilet, new sink and new faucet in the powder room and updated the light fixture and mirror. We also painted the existing vanity cabinets to match the same white as the trim to freshen it up.

laundry room 1


laundry room 2

Check out this awesome wallpaper!

laundry room 3

And it took us a little while as we plugged away at the trim as I painted each area, it was well worth all the elbow grease! Removing old wallpaper might be the best and worst thing in the world. So tough and frustrating at some points, and also so rewarding when it’s gone!


Even with the wallpaper still up the space was looking so much better with an updating flooring.

laundry tile 1


laundry tile 2

In the process of this mini (that snowballed into medium) makeover, I found one of my new favourite paint colours – Benjamin Moore’s Fossil. When I went to the store to pick out a colour, I knew I wanted and needed something pretty neutral and pretty light. BUT, I also knew that I wasn’t changing out our almond coloured laundry pair (wop wop!), so it had to play well with them too. I described the colour I was searching for to the sales rep as “latte foam” and she pointed me to Fossil right away. It didn’t hurt that the name referenced our love of all things dinos in our house.

And I forgot to mention that all of this was taking place in the winter of 2015 as we were deciding whether or not these upgrades and renos were for us or for a potential buyer. As we plugged away at the updates, it became clear that our time at this house was coming to an end so some of the projects we finished and didn’t even have the time to take “after” photos. Oops!

So, by the power of the magic of the internet here are the few “after” photos that we have of the renewed spaces.

Family After 1

In the family room the major change was the flooring as well as the new beefed-up trim painted white. We also found the rug at Home Depot for a steal.

Family After 2

Changing out the old carpet made the whole space feel new again despite the fact that we barely changed anything else in the room.

Powder Room After
The powder room is a whole different story. In here we replaced or updated everything except the cabinet countertop. We replaced the floor, trim, toilet, sink, faucet, mirror and light fixture. I also painted the cabinet white in the same colour as the trim and updated the hardware. The whole space was completely refreshed.

Both these updates and the updates in the laundry room (which included removing wallpaper and painting – again Fossil – and of course the flooring) were definitely of the “Why didn’t we do this sooner?” type. We *almost* starting to rethink our decision to move out.

That’s a story for another day!



Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s