Welcome to this experimental blog, wherein for the next 6 months I am going to be logging in my experiences about remodeling my home, ranging from the smallest tasks to the biggest ones, including tiling and installation of cabinets and what not!

What with the demands of the wife and the budget, its going to be one hell of a ride, and I would like you guys to join us and also be able to take some tips and tricks or even be inspired to do the same!




theprogressbar7:01 am

So, I bought a house.

bathroom-1-editAnd with buying the house, which cost me a bomb (Just by the way), I realized that I did not have the money or the patience to deal with designers or the architects swarming about my house. I decided that I am going to record each and every project of mine for those of the many who are trying this and would like some help along the way or even suggestions to make it better and maybe cheaper! Renovation of the bathroom was the first task on my list of many, many friends of mine told me that it was the secret weapon of any house, the one area which would be your own corner, for you to just enjoy some minutes of peace and tranquility every single day.

Since my wife and me are very passionate about gardening and flowers, we thought that we could transform the bathroom into one that would depict the same and also ward off the smell. First things first, we had to buy a bath, which was in our opinion should be one which can fit 2 comfortably, and also have a waterfall shower, in addition to which we also wanted to fit in a double sink for our smooth and easy mornings! Having bought the required installments and fixtures, the next step was to install them with the tiles.

renovate-a-bathroom-567x384-on-interiorpictureWe had purchased pastel color tiles, so my first installation was the tiles, which required me to apply the cement with the bonding agent and then place the tiles accordingly, and the tiles which had to be cornered off, had to be one with a drill and that was one hell of a experience which should be done with extreme caution.

Once the tiles were dried and in position, the next task was to install the bath, we had purchased an independent bath, and that required a lot of plumbing, in the sense that the pipe had to be re-routed and made into one for a better flow of water, and also set it with the heater system.

Once that was done, my wife decorated the place with lots of flowers and potpourri, and also a basket with some towels and lotions etc. All in all, just make sure that when you are renovating your bathroom, buy the right tiles that are the best fit for you, be it vitrified or even marble ones. Be vary of the drill and also start with the plumbing only when the water has been cut off, else you will face a flooded living room, and trust me, its not fun at all.

Chao! Check in with my next project soon!

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theprogressbar11:35 am

Wide_array_of_lampsOur home had been slowly but steadily shaping into our dream house, and now it was time to install the intricate details that could not be ignored.The one aspect that my wife and me both agreed was that the living room had to have an air of sophistication and class. Hence, we agreed upon the installation of pot lights, since we had already built special molds and raised ceilings; we thought it was only right that we could have such yellow lights that would be very soothing in the night.

I browsed through many kinds, designs and colors, according to the price and the durability of many, and I decided upon a mix of traditional pot lights and some filament lights as well which would give the entire place a very traditional yet modern feel. I approached many stores looking for discount, and be vary because you can actually score high discounts on these, as filament bulbs are cheaper in consideration. You can even customize a filament bulb, wherein you can ask for a particular design for the filament to be molded into, as a surprise, I got my wife’s initials molded into one. (Beware: Makes for a wonderful present!)

Anyway, once I purchased the needed bulbs, wiring and switchboards, I had to call upon an electrician, because this was way beyond my hands and I would advise you to do the same, it won’t so heavy on the pocket and will save you a lot of time which would have gone into potential researching or even a trip to the emergency room. The pot lights were installed with an automatic sensor touch switchboard, wherein if anyone would enter the said room, it would light up automatically and the entire board could also be operated by the clapping of hands, if there was one clap it signaled “Switch on”, two claps would mean “Alternative Switch” and so on. The technology is absolutely brilliant and if you are ready to spend that much, in terms of a long-term investment, might as well take the plunge today!
My wife is also extremely happy with the way it turned out to be, and I am happy about the cost that was saved, because all in all, including the electricians fees, the entire cost amounted to 2000 dollars only, which if I hired a decorator would have definitely cost way more. A few tips to keep in mind, always research your product and design, have a look at potential products and the prices, compare the same and then approach a professional who could fit it in for you, as you can always save cost by purchasing the products yourself and trying to score some discount when bought in bulk! Hope you guys have fun installing lights, and if you have tried something new and unique, please do share it with me, I love experimenting and would be open to trying it out as well!
Have a wonderful weekend!

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theprogressbar2:57 am

So, finally the end of the project is here.

Newly_renovated_kitchen_with_hardwood_floorI had to refinish the hardwood floors for the home and had to complete the following steps:

Sand off the old finish
To do the same, I rented a walk behind floor sander that would rotate and sand off the old finish and actually collect it in a dust bag so as to not create a mess off it. Also, the cost of renting isn’t really that much but you can use a hand held sander for the same effect as well.

Dust from molds, ducts and walls.
Next, an extremely important stuff is to clean the dust from all the molds, ducts and walls. This can be done by a vacuum or even just wiping the same by a damp cloth. Once done, it’s important to clean the floors again to keep it spick and span.

The final finish!

The last step is the finish, which is dependent on the kind of look you would want for your floors; – Polyurethane. Varnish or Penetrating Sealer. You can buff the floors with a steel wool, vacuum and wipe the floor again. Post which you can apply a double coat of the chosen type.

wood-floor-polyurethane-qnaf6pbkI chose the matt varnish because that’s the kind of look that suited my home and design and was cheaper to all the other alternatives. The entire ordeal took us an entire time of 2 days, because we had to seal off the entire floor, and also had to make sure it was done efficiently as well. All in all, I am extremely pleased with the final product because it has a very classy look and looks put together. If you feel you are not up for this project, its always fun to ask a couple of friends, get some chips and dip and make it a fun activity/experience that you could have and also its obviously easier on the pocket rather than hiring professional help.

Try it yourself and let me know what was your experience!

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theprogressbar7:05 am

AIR-DUCTOne of the main aspects of the house that I was putting off for a very long time, was the installation of the furnace and air ducts, because to be honest it sounds so boring and taxing that I tried to put it off until the very last minute. But the time had come, when I absolutely had to do it, else the project would be stalled. One of the disadvantages I feel, of living in a tropical country, is the fact that I have to install not only air conditioning but also a furnace for the heating system.

For the air duct installation, I had to buy the steel or aluminum ones, which is a good option according to how your house is designed. Once I bought the ducts, the installation had to be done inside the space provided between the walls, especially designed for the same width paths as well. The same installation had to be done with screws and clips to make sure that it was absolutely secure. It also had to be connected to the air-conditioning system, so that the excess air can also be released for the same. I followed the installation guide on the Quality Heating and Cooling website.

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theprogressbar7:09 am

So, here we are again!

My next assignment was one, which required a lot of work, and it was something that cropped up suddenly, and was not anticipated by me. Since the time I had been planning, I had left off a room which my wife and I had decided would be veneered off for the garden, but alas we found out that the kind of soil that the house is built on is not really a habitual ground for the growth of grass and many other such shrubs and plants. Hence, we decided it would be our best option to convert this space into a small room which could be just a laid back one wherein we would occasionally call upon some friends, have some beer and discuss about politics and children!

Anyway, to start working on the same, I had to put up a new wall and decided to drywall it, in the sense that I had to cut the dry wall to size, by scoring the paper on the finished side, which I used a bright red with a utility knife and then, I had to emboss the small cuts for the outlets, light switches and doors. The drywall had to be fixed to the wall structure with nails, glue and the little costlier alternative drywall screws.

how-to-install-drywallingThen, to give it a better and more polished look, we painted it and lo behold the way we painted it that was a sight. We just spray painted a mix of primary colors and waited for science to do its magic! We used a traditional method and turned it fun, by fixing color water balloons and shot them with darts to create various designs! That was fun; you guys should give it a try, especially with the kids! Anyway, once that was done, we had certainly accumulated a huge mess, which couldn’t have been possible to clean by just my wife and me. Hence, we didn’t even try and just called upon a cleaning service – Companion Maids, a pretty famous and reputed company and they were very efficient with their work, as they just transformed the entire space and even complimented us on the work that we had put into it!

Why dry walling you ask? Well, it’s simple.
Even though many say its vary to molds and a lot of bacteria being attached, drywall walls are extremely sound proof and a cheaper alternative as well especially when you are in a situation like mine wherein we had to make a quick decision on what we were going to do. The debacle turned out to be quite a lot of fun and I am extremely happy with how it turned out to look finally, and are now recommending it to a lot of others and even you, send in your experiences or even pictures!

Until next time, budding builders!

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