Wes and Linda's Hallway Project - Spring 2015

One of the sore points in our humble little house has been the central hallway, a forlorn combo of a very weathered cedar plank floor, doors with untold layers of old paint, surrounded by beat-up door trim.

This project was spurred by the purchase of two full packages of new white oak flooring from our Habitat for Humanity Restore outlet. The flooring only came to $40 total. The trim for the doors and baseboards was the most expensive item, about $130.

One of the goals for Linda was to preserve as much of the feel of the original house as possible, so she opted to strip, sand and refinish the first of three doors surrounding the hallway. When some gorgeous wood was revealed underneath, we opted to go with a whitewash stain. It took about ten days of work to renovate the door, and five weeks, off-and-on to finish the hallway project. Linda plans to strip one door a season, so two more seasons to go.

This "before" pic shows the trap door that goes into the basement crawl space, covered with the original cedar tongue-and-groove flooring. The flooring has seen a lot of wear.

The lighter, surrounding area is a wood sub-floor underlayment material cut to fit the complex shape of the hallway entrances, while leaving the space for the trap door.

Door trim and baseboards should be applied overlapping the finished flooring. That, plus the terrible condition of the removed trim, meant we needed to remove much of the door trim in order to replace it with newly finished wood.

This is some of the removed door trim, showing decades of layered paint, bumps and bruises. Worth replacing, for sure.

The is a view of the finished trim in the same area above the doors.

This shows the finished trim cut and installed over the new flooring. Every piece of wood on the floor and walls in this picture is brand new.

The above pic show a view of the old, solid core doors. Linda is refinishing one per year. Countless layers of white, blue, yellow and pink paint were stripped off the door and hinges.

This is the whitewash gel stain on the stripped door showing the beautiful wood grain that was hidden. Also note the new transition strip between the hallway flooring and the bathroom tile.

Although the hallway is 4.5' x 6' in size, the project was endlessly complicated by the presence of a trapdoor into the crawlspace and the fact that four rooms enter into the hallway, each requiring new trim.

This is an aerial view of about half the hallway, photographed from the finished attic stairwell.

A repeat view of the full hallway, trim, baseboards and transition strips. In all there were over 100 separate boards that had to be fitted, measured, cut, stained. filled and installed. All the flooring was installed with finishing nails, avoiding staples.

This is typically the way we use the hallway. The drop-down staircase goes to the Linda's second-floor office and studio space, plus a storage room.