Behind a phone jack, I noticed a patch of unpainted wood.
On further testing, I discovered that there appeared to be only one coat of white paint over the baseboards in this room. Baseboards in other rooms have had 5-6 coats of paint and 2 coats of wood putty on them. Could it be that I could actually bring the woodwork in this room back to its former glory? I scraped a little paint from the door trim, window trim and french doors and was rewarded with wood below all surfaces.
I got out the wood stripper and got to work.
After scraping the paint, I was left with this.
The remaining stain was really dark. The stain on the built-ins in the living room are also really dark. From research I've done, it doesn't appear that such dark stains were popular when bungalows were first built. The stain in my house was probably darkened at some point later. Some stain has dripped on the glass of the built-ins and the bricks appear to have been stained too. The bricks are actually sand colored which you can see by looking at the chimney from the outside of the house. Maybe I'm wrong and the dark stain is original, but I think it's just too dark, especially against the lighter floors.
After sanding (and sanding, and sanding, and sanding some more) and then digging white caulk out of all the dimples and cracks, I got down to this:
Isn't it pretty?!? I tested a couple stains.
On the left is Provincial, on the right is Dark Maple, both from Minwax. I think they are both too dark. I went back and got a couple lighter stains.
On the left is Cherry, on the right is Golden Pecan. The Golden Pecan matches the floor really well, so that is what I am going with. I'll probably do two coats and then a semi-glass clear coat.I like that you can see the wood grain through it.
Yesterday I refilled the dimples and cracks with Minwax stainable wood putty. Next, I'll sand it down, put on a coat of wood conditioner and the first coat of stain.
|This is the piece after sanding off the rejected stain samples.|
I just hope it comes out half as nice as the cabinets stained by A and G of Is It a House Yet?
At some point, I'll need to take down and strip the french doors (as well as the window and door trim). I hope the original door plates still look decent once all that paint is gone.