Cave Art

Being a student and lover of art, I have been fascinated with civilization’s need to create a visual record of our existence. For some reason I have always been attracted to paintings – I suppose that’s why I do what I do at the gallery I am supposed to be running (when I’m not here at the Adventures Project). Since this is a woman cave- I thought I would present some cave art.

janfeb2016_f11_indonesiacavepaintings-jpg__600x0_q85_upscaleAn example is this painting that is thought to be the oldest cave painting in the world. Found in Indonesia in 2014 you can read about it here.

When the carpet was installed in the basement it was just hours before pieces of cast off furniture arrived from our house we currently live in. Oh, and some cave art as well.

1-cave-artIt’s been 6 years since any livable space has existed in this house – unless you count a bathroom. I plopped down some chairs and a coffee table and went to pull some art from storage.

3-cave-artJust a few pieces to finally get something on the walls – after all, that’s one reason for doing this crazy project in the first place.

4-thorpThis was my wife’s first request. This is an acrylic on canvas  painting by a regional artist Cynthia Thorp titled ‘A Moment of Him” – well it is a woman cave after all.

5-mary-louis-schrodtThis oil painting is titled “Fire Fighter” by the late Mary Louis Schrodt of Louisville. It’s wonderfully realistic, but unfortunately not functional You can read about her here.

6-grace-coleShe selected this Oil painting by Grace Cole titled ” Requiem of Frozen Tears”. Grace is still a working artist and you can read about her here.

7-deb-boyerShe picked this little watercolor by regional artist Deb Boyer. My wife came from an island, so this is a reminder of home for her.

8-chris-thomasAnd this little oil painting by the only male artist in the cave. This rose study is by Chris Thomas, an artist we helped develop many years ago. His web site is here.

 

8-coffee-artOf course, to my wife, the best art is her coffee cup sculpture.

It feels nice to have someplace that’s not full of sawdust and has art on the walls.

I’m happy.

 

 

 

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Quick Update

Just a quick update to let everyone know I’m alive. I’m working like the dickens at the MisAdventures project, so more to come.

I asked my wife if she wanted a shelf in her little coffee niche before I started this project, as it’s way easier to just tile it in while doing the field tile – not needed she said. Afterwords she thought that a shelf was probably a good idea. Sigh –  married life

 

1-cutting-marbleI had enough of the old marble top my neighbor gave me to make a little shelf.

2-coffee-nook-shelf

So after cutting and a little polishing I grooved the bottom of the shelf to receive some stainless steel pegs that I had drilled and set in the sides of the niche. A little tweaking, a little grout – bada- bing,  bada-boom. Done and move on.

3-new-carpet

Good thing too – as I had just enough time to put the final coat of paint on the walls and finish the baseboards before the carpet installers arrived.

Hang in there – things are going to get finished.

It’s Coffee Time

Greetings fellow renovators. I hope everyone’s summer was fun and fruitful – whether you were tackling a renovation project or your summer reading list. For me it’s been inside time this year – with most of my focus on the woman cave shenanigans.

Over the weekend I finally got around to fixing the hole to the left of the staircase. My wife loves her coffee – me? I’m 62 and I have never had a cup of coffee – or a beer for that matter. I’m weird like that. She wanted a place to have a hot pot of coffee or tea for her visitors – so that’s why the hole is there.

9 finished stair

So after I paneled the hole with some 1/2″ plywood it’s time to figure out what to do.

1-nook-startSo I hopped over to the home center and picked up this subway mosaic tile from Lowe’s. I added a electrical outlet on a GFCI circuit for the coffee pot. Since this is a house built in 1935 I thought this smaller version of  subway tile would work.

2-marble-oldNext out to the garage to get a piece of antique marble top that my neighbor gave me – it was from an old dresser that had a top that split in two.

3-concrete-board-upAfter a little fiddling with the tile saw and a quick polish it was attached to the bottom with some silicone. 1/2″ Hardie cement board was added to the back, top and sides of the opening with a little tile adhesive and screwed temporarily until the mastic set.

4-tile-startAfter a little math we start to tile. I used tile mastic instead of thinset here. Mastic is an organic adhesive that can’t take continuous water exposure. Since this area will only get a minimal amount of moisture it will work fine. Mastic works well with mosaics because it holds tile initially much better than thinset.

5-tile-inSo in a couple of hours I’ve got the tiles set.

6-groutingThe next day time for grout. I was kind of concerned because my wife picked a light grout and this looked way darker than the color sample showed.

7-grout-finishedAs it dries it lightens up – so that’s a good thing. What’s not a good thing is I missed a little grout by the outlet plate. A little grout mixed up and applied will fix this.

8-pvc-trimThen a little PVC trim is cut to cover the raw edges of the opening. This was milled from 5/4 (1″) stock to wrap around the front to cover the tile edge.

9-trim-inAfter the cover trim is attached I made a back band trim to match all the other door openings.

10-trim-detailHere you see the trim detail that wraps around the front to cover the raw tile edge.

11-finishedNow all that is needed is the coffee or tea. If it makes my wife happy – then I’m happy.

Onward we march – tag along, something pretty might show up.

 

 

Mid August Progress and Color Changes

I know it’s been a while since my last post. Lots of activity at the MisAdventures project. So I thought I’d share a photo-rich post of the shenanigans here in southern Indiana.

1 kitchen flooringFirst up is the laying of 1/2″ BC plywood over all of the existing first floor. This is the kitchen area looking towards the sunroom. The original 3/4″ T&G pine floor gets overlayed with the plywood glued and screwed every 8 inches and also screwed through the floor joists. This adds a great deal of stiffness to the floor that will have 3/4″ oak flooring.

2 coffee canI guess you had make do with what was handy. This old coffee can lid was used as a patch over a larger hole in the floor. Looks like the plumbing had been moved several times over the 80+ year history of this house.

3 corner repairThe two first floor offices have the original plaster lathe walls and ceilings. I spent many hours grinding out cracks and repairing with plaster. The final corner crack is cut out and repaired with fiberglass mesh and hot mud plaster.

4 crown mouldingThe other office got a new crown molding and paint. Here’s a test fit – and I have to admit to failure in the coping corner ability. I tried the proper way by coping the corner and just couldn’t get a good fit. Mitering the corner is not the way it should be done – but it sure looks better than what my poor coping saw skills produced.

5 closet doorThe original doors were all sanded and repainted and fitted with those fancy door knobs and plates.New hinges and mortise latches will let these doors hang around for another 80 years.

6 tv boxBefore I finished laying the plywood underlayment I was able to run a couple more cables and power for a recessed TV box. Trimmed out the doors and painted everything.

7 new office paintSince I had to repair the cracked corner in my wife’s office – it gave her a chance to change colors – so the walls now are a more saturated blue/green instead of sky blue.

8 ceiling medallionsI found a couple of smaller ceiling medallions laying around from the previous owner. I reconfigured them with some bondo and put them up. The bead detail matches the door plates and the large medallion in the living room.

9 skirt board cuttingOne more thing before we head to the woman cave. The stairs from the 1st floor to the 2nd needed skirt boards. One side is 14′ long and the other is 16′. Here I’m cutting the angles using a cardboard template. I use a lot of cardboard for angle cuts – just to make sure.

10 stair skirt boardsThe stair skirt boards slide in next to the outside stair stringers. I left a space when mounting the stringers so that these trim pieces could fit easily. If you don’t allow for the skirt you’ll have to scribe cut the whole skirt – and that’s no fun. The risers and treads will butt up against the skirt board.

Now for something completely different

11 tub plumbingI gave up on hiring plumbers and started doing my own plumbing. Here I’ve got the all the copper fitted to the tub deck filler. The pipes look a little  crooked in this photo – but it’s just the camera angle.

12 Josh Craig tileHere’s Josh Craig – the tile guy. He’s one mean mamma-jamma when it comes to tile. He’s spent over a month on this bathroom, so he might not win a race, but the finished product is worth the wait.

13 tile patternAll the tile in the basement is porcelain from Atlas Concord. I added two vertical panels of this lotus flower design in the shower. I had Josh cut the tiles in two to run them vertically. It’s very subtle, but adds a little interest to the shower without being too obvious. The green doo-dads keep all the tiles flush, with very little ‘lippage’.

14 tile floor.I have a floor border with mosaic inserts to match the design of the shower floor. The green stuff is a crack isolating membrane called Green Skin.

15 color changeI was never a fan of the Italian Ice green color Francia selected for the bath. Now that the tile is going in she also though it was too pale. So time for another color change. Good thing it’s only paint – and my labor. No problem –  a couple of hours and all will be forgotten. Looks like BM Boothbay Grey it is.

16 paint startFirst we do a little cutting in.

17 new colorI think the grey will be a little more relaxing. We’ll see what happens – who knows what the future holds..

So there you have the latest update – more to come.

 

 

Mid June Roundup Still Stuff to Do

Happy Summer to all you fellow renovators! I only have one pretty picture to show you on this installment of MisAdventures.Lots going on, just not much that is picture-worthy. Sometimes I forget to snap a photograph, but most of the work has been tedious stuff like drywall finishing, painting and trim work. We’re closing in on finishing the basement project. More yet to do,  but almost livable. I’ll do a proper before and after post when it’s all done. But here’s were we are as of this morning.

1 basement ceilingI’ve got the basement ceiling in and all the drywall done in this room. It’s all painted with BM Moonlight White. I’ve got the 9 wall and ceiling speakers in and all of the led recessed lighting. The system is set up for a 70″ TV. As everywhere else in this house, I’ve got more than enough light. There are 32 hardwired light fixtures on this level.

2 basement electrical panelI still have to wire the final kitchen circuits and close this area up. I’ll figure some way to hide these boxes behind artwork or a chalkboard or something.

3 egress windowThe egress window is trimmed out and cased with PVC trim. I’ll add a one piece sill on the bottom and finish trim this window.

4 small basement windowThere are two small hopper style windows that are also trimmed in PVC. I like this material around windows. If it gets wet, no big deal as it’s 100% waterproof. No swelling or paint problems. I still paint the window’s trim with BM Impervo acrylic enamel in a white match which is the same color as the sunroom trim. The little door hides the whole house water shut off.

5 basement towards stairsLooking back towards the stair, there’s a little utility closet to the right of a small TV mount.

6 AV cabinetThe AV cabinet and all the wires. Just testing the lines with some old equipment before I start putting in the cable terminals and final set up.

7 door to utility roomHere is the extra deep door to the work room / utility room. This wall is a support wall dividing the woman cave from the work room. The concrete block wall was 8″ wide, plus two 4″ wide walls with spacing makes this about 18″ deep. I needed this door to swing in to the work room and have the widest possible opening.

10 doors to spa and pantryDoors are in for the bathroom on the left and the pantry on the right. I used single pane doors with  obscure glass on the doors to match the rest of the house and give it a vintage spa feel.

8 pantry cabinetInside the pantry area I built this removable storage cabinet. It has to be removable to get access to the bathroom inline fan. The little switch above the door is used to override the fan circuit that automatically comes on with the light in the bathroom.

9 well under stairsThis is the access to the well pump and sump pump under the stairs. I’ll be adding another tank to the pump system to add more capacity for watering the garden. The pipe stub outs are waiting for me to plumb in a utility sink and vanity.

11 spa door and shelving unitsInside the spa area I’ve built two cabinets – the one on the left will get a mirrored door and the one on the right gets open shelves for towels and baskets. All of the trim in this room is PVC.

12 spa vanity areaThe vanity wall has a medicine cabinet on the wall right of the sink. It’s placed here because the sink wall is a below grade exterior wall and it wouldn’t fit. We’ll see how this works out.It doesn’t really show, but the bathroom is painted with BM Italian Ice Green in their Matte bathroom paint.

13 spa steam showerThe steam shower is ready for tile. The tile guy will be here in a few weeks to finish this room and the pantry.

14 whirlpool tub surroundI’ve built the whirlpool tub surround panels. Again, made from PVC to make them waterproof. All the panels are removable to access the pump and plumbing. I’ll finish trim these when the tile is installed.

15 sunroom chandeliersAnd finally one pretty picture. I needed the space in the garage that these chandeliers were occupying, as they were in 4’X5′ boxes. I decided to go ahead and install them over the weekend, along with the wall sconces over the windows – since I’ve had them here waiting for this day since 2013.  This is a pair of Curry & Company Raintree Oval Chandeliers. I think they’ll make a good contrast to the medium valued wood floors when they go in. I love layering light, so I planned seven different light sources in this room. Recessed over head, Chandeliers, Two circuit track lighting, wall sconces, Bookcase accent, table lamps and window light. It is a white valued room, so the light sources will add texture and interest to the space. Or – that’s how I figured it.

We’ll see…. stick around.

 

 

 

Door Trim and Other Time Consuming Tasks

Well, fellow renovators my monthly update is in order. Still focused on the basement woman cave – and lots have been going on. I still haven’t gotten to the really pretty stuff, but we have to pay our dues in wading through the tedious stuff. So this episode focuses on that pesky door trim that you have to address if you have any type of hole in your wall.

1 cabinet insertsFirst we make a couple of plywood cabinet inserts. These are 3/4″ UV coated cabinet stock. They will go in the bathroom – the one on the left will get a door mirror. The one on the right is open towel storage. They’ll need trim, right?

2 inserts in placeAnd this is where they go in the bathroom. Uh, oh – looks like some complicated trim gymnastics coming up.

3 pvc trimFirst we figure out the pieces for the Tall cabinet and cut to size. This is PVC trim – all of the trim in the bathroom is made from this material.

4 marking trimThen we flip it over and mark where the screws will be drilled and a mark for the inside corner.

5 Kreg tool drillThen we drill the pocket screws using my cheap Kreg drill guide. This system is great to make quick work of cabinet projects like these face frames.

6 glueing trimEach joint is coated with PVC primer and then general purpose PVC cement. Keep the cement a little ways away from the front face of the joint to keep the front looking pretty.

7 fastening trimI then use a clamp to hold the pieces against the table surface while I set the screws. I use the clamp to keep the two pieces from shifting under pressure. This assures a nice flat face.

8 sanding flushIf you have kept the glue off the face, you can sand the joint flush immediately. If you have solvent on the front, you’ll have to wait a day or two to sand, as the glue softens the PVC and it will be impossible to get a flush joint.

9 trim pieces finishedOnce the two trim assemblies are finished, it’s time to make it a little more difficult.

10 trim pieces assembledThe trim to the right is for the door and the left is the trim around the cabinet insert. I’ve joined the two together to get super smooth joints. You’ll see how this all fits together in a later post. The two pressure clamps and a strip of PVC are used to stabilize this awkward piece without breaking the joints when moving to install.

Quick way to measure trim

Since I’ve done every door, window and cabinet in this place with all new trim that I fabricated,  I’ve had plenty of practice. Here is the simplest way I’ve found to measure and cut door trim.

11 trim spacerFirst make a spacer for the reveal of the trim. This is the space between the interior jamb of the door or window and the start of the casing (the flat part that goes around the opening.) I take one side of casing and space it with my template. Then clamp the piece in place.

12 trim clampedRepeat the process on the other side. Make the casing sides the same length and let the bottom edge rest on the floor.

13 marking header trimPlace a piece of casing along the top edge and mark the outside edge. I also put reference marks to keep pieces in order.

14 trim surround finishedI drill pocket screws and assemble just like I showed you earlier.  Keep the outer edge of the side casings flush to the top casing to make sure the reveal is correct. This makes a strong, flat joint and it will fit perfectly around your door.

Pretty stuff coming up in the next post. Promise.

Wednesday one shot

photo

Since I usually sell art, not make it – I thought I’d share my only artistic creation. This is looking up from the bottom of the Woman Cave stairwell. See? I told you there were lots of drywall corners. Happy Wednesday everyone.