Archive | Bathrooms RSS feed for this section

Water, water everywhere.

3 Apr

I can’t even take pictures of this. There are major cracks in the cast iron waste pipe up and down the house and there’s water gushing out from the 4th, 3rd, and 2nd floors. Luckily, I can still use the toilet on the 1st floor, but no bath for a couple of days while they fix it up. It’s pretty intense. This is an example of the principle that once you start messing with anything in an old house, everything that touches it starts to fall apart. Sigh.

Advertisements

Waterworld! 2013

31 Mar

One of the unexpected outcomes about owning an old house is that you get to learn quite a lot about home maintenance and the history of home construction.

In other words, I’ve got some leaking pipes.

There are two (at least) spots where the 140 year old cast iron waste pipe is leaking. I thought it would have to be replaced as part of the installation of the new bathroom, but the plumber assured me it was sound. He was wrong. It’s cracking up. Sigh. It could always be worse. So a new plumber is coming to assess the sitch tomorrow.

In the meantime, here are some photos of the innermost part of the chase, which are a bit of a walk through history. Lead pipes (yup, that’s right), the cast iron waste, some copper water pipes, and the strangely located hanging electric wire (live) that’s now dripping with water. Not safe. Don’t dangle wires next to water pipes, kids.

Cracked waste pipe on 3rd floor

Cracked waste pipe on 3rd floor

Window to the pipes in Butler's Pantry Closet

Window to the pipes in Butler’s Pantry Closet

Cast iron waste pipe, copper water pipes LEAD water pipes and braided electrical cord in the chase (seen from BP wall window)

Cast iron waste pipe, copper water pipes LEAD water pipes and braided electrical cord in the chase (seen from BP wall window)

Looking up the chase

Looking up the chase

Some odds and ends

31 Mar

I managed to do a big glass switcheroo (after dropping and shattering the glass in this framed poster) and hang this great vintage London Underground poster in the toilet compartment. Also got a new towel bar (featured under the nice blue hairdryer Elaine gave me — thanks, Elaine!). So this is it — bathroom is done and it looks great. And it works. Let’s focus on that for the moment.

Picture hanging in loo cube

Picture hanging in loo cube

Towel bar

Towel bar

Done!

24 Mar

Here are two shots of my fabulous new bathroom. I think my AirBnB guests are going to love it, and I’m going to love not sharing my bathroom anymore (not that it was *that* bad, but not sharing it is better). Also it will be nice to hop in the shower myself as needed.

Bathroom two Bathroom one

There was a shower in the leopard bathroom where the laundry machines are now when I first moved in (eleven years ago), so I have had a few showers in the house, but I took it out PDQ so that I could put the laundry in. I took an inaugural shower in the new bathroom tonight and it was a novel and not unpleasant. But I do love my morning bath.

Nearly done.

24 Mar

Here are some photos of today’s painting progress. I’ve just finished priming the trim and the door with some very smelly primer and am waiting for it to dry. The pets have made it known that they’ve had enough of being ignored and would like me to pay attention to them. I have Trixie and Taggy on either side of me and Jerome on my laptop. As soon as they all fall asleep I’ll head back upstairs and finish painting. ┬áPesty animals.

First coat of paint going on.

First coat of paint going on.

So I can remember when I did this!

So I can remember when I did this!

They're in the union.

They’re in the union.

 

Two coats, still wet.

Two coats, still wet.

Two coats in the toilet enclosure

Two coats in the toilet enclosure

Supervisor.

Supervisor.

Stop painting and play with us!!!!

Stop painting and play with us!!!!

 

 

 

Primed

23 Mar

File under “it’s amazing what a coat of paint can do”. I primed the walls and ceiling and some of the trim. I’m only doing primer on the ceiling, because I do hope to put a tin ceiling in soon-ish (within the next two years) and besides, a couple coats of primer is as good as paint if it’s the same color. And it did take a couple of coats. But now look — shiny! new! white! clean! yay!

Starting to paint the ceiling

Starting to paint the ceiling

Everything primed.

Everything primed.

You will note my OSHA approved painting platform (a hassock from the other room) in the second photo.

And here’s what the walls and trim look like primed:

Primed corner.

Primed corner.

Window party primed (and still wet).

Window party primed (and still wet).

It looks so crisp and hygenic that I’m wondering if I should keep the walls light, but I do like a dark wall, so I’ll paint one of the walls blue and see how it looks against the tile and ceiling. That primer is pretty amazing, so I can absolutely paint over the blue if I decide to go lighter. I used (leftover) Gripper primer by Glidden. It does indeed grip — I scrubbed the daylights out of my hand and it’s still all covered in paint.

While I was standing on the hassock in the tub, I got a visit from a little spider, which of course made me feel like I had them crawling all over me. I was wishing the boys from Merlin were there to restore the balance of nature for me, but since they weren’t, I just left the little guy to crawl around.

If ever there was a time I needed Bradley James and Colin Morgan in my bathroom, this is that time.

If ever there was a time I needed Bradley James and Colin Morgan in my bathroom, this is that time.

Scraping and Fiddling

23 Mar

I’d not installed the tank bolts properly yesterday, so I fiddled around and got them in the right way (rubber washers go against the toilet, metal washers go against the metal screws and nuts is apparently the mantra to remember) so that stopped them leaking. The toilet now works — flushes and fills. It needs a little fine-tuning, though, so I’m going to ask my loo guru Rob to come and help me if he has the time this weekend. But I’m thrilled that I could do most of it on my own and am looking forward to learning from him what I didn’t finesse properly.

Toilet! Flushing! Working!

Toilet! Flushing! Working!

After I finished that, I gave the woodwork a good (well, good enough) scrape. The ceiling is luan and that may be why it looks like it’s full of lead ladders… I’m sure the trim is painted with lead paint, but I didn’t think the luan ceiling was that old. Anyway, I could care less about lead dust at this point, I’m sure I’ve snorted up quarts of the stuff by this time. We only use 10% of our brain anyway.

Scraped ceiling.

Scraped ceiling.

 

Detail of window.

Detail of window.

Scraped window frame

Scraped window frame

So the window frame is in really sad shape. I’m just going to scrape it for now and give it a good coat of paint. And let’s face it, that is probably all I’m going to do. But while scraping it, I had the fantasy of hiring someone to come over the summer and take it apart, scrape the wood properly and replace the rotted bits and then reconstruct it. That was probably the lead talking.

And here’s the radiator, which I probably will take off this summer and bring down to the autobody shop (Performance Motoring, I think — it’s on Saint James Ave) that sandblasted and repainted the radiator in the other bathroom. This I probably really will do. It’s easy at least for me), inexpensive, looks great, and makes the radiator heat more efficiently.

Radiator and scraping results

Radiator and scraping results

Here’s a couple of neat details — the old yale lock (all the doors had these and some also had deadbolts, from the house’s many years as a rooming house), and a really interesting twisted brass robe hook on the door:

Old yale lock

Old yale lock

Neat old twisted brass rack

Neat old twisted brass rack

And the view from the bathroom window is pretty fine. Sometimes I forget how high up that top floor is.

The view from the bathroom window

The view from the bathroom window

You can see the Museums parking lots in the foreground, Chestnut Tower (the tall one) on the right, South Church’s Moorish steeple (on Maple Street), the planetarium, and St. Michael’s Cathedral steeple. And the cold sky. Sigh, when is Spring going to spring?

And lastly, Trixie snuggling.

Trixie snuggling in bed

Trixie snuggling in bed