Monday, September 3, 2012

Labor Day = lots of manual labor

Hi guys, Winston here again.  Mom is just Pooped from all the work on this here lovely Labor Day weekend!  She had put it off long enough - this was the weekend to start the Venetian plaster in the bathroom.  So, we begin with layer one.  I should start out by telling you that my parents used to really like the paint products at Lowe's but had recently been impressed by Home Depot's Behr's stuff.  Dad had tried painting the bathroom brown, but with the wallpaper, it was a bust.  Dad was told that the Home Depot Venetian plaster could be color matched to any color, so they decided to give it a go.  Except that after having the first gallon of plaster mixed, the paint crew discovered that was not so true. Back to the drawing board Mom and Dad went, special colors in hand.  They picked "limestone" and went back for that stuff.  Finally, mom could get started.  The instructions said to put it on thin and that it was fine if the wall showed through.  Well, not to jump ahead of things, but that isn't exactly true.  Anyway, here it is getting started.  
I should mention that Dad was also working on some projects while Mom was working on the bathroom.  Scary.  LoUd projects.  I decided I should help Mom, then.  Clearly, she would need protection.

The walls did not look very good after that first coat.  She was disheartened.  Especially since she had used the entire gallon.  They didn't even look that great after a second coat.  And a second coat meant a second gallon.  To your left, you will see the major challenge.  The walls were uneven.  So, she'd spackle that stuff on, cross hatch it, and the brown wall would appear again.  There were lots of little - and not so little - brown spots all over the wall.  She was FRUSTRATED.  This was a lot of work.  She was starting to think that it was never going to look good.
However, thanks to a visit from my GrandPawEnts and a surprise dinner with Adam, Andrea, and Noah, she was feeling more ready to take on the next coat (after going to Home Depot again for yet another gallon).  After a good night's sleep, though, and a fun run with a coworker (she ran, I made sure her pillow stayed warm), Mom and I were back at it! 
This third coat finally started to look good!!!


By Sunday night, I was SPENT.  I had to keep checking on Mom and making sure everything was going well.  That was exhausting work.

The walls have to dry at least 4 hours between each coat.  After the final coat, you have to wait at least 24 hours but no more than 7 days before you burnish it.  This means you sand the walls then rub them with the spatula.  Monday morning, Mom ran to Ace to get 400 grit sand paper and started on the walls.  Dad checked them out and pointed out that her sandpapering style was leaving finger marks in the wall.  

So Dad got out the power tools.  After some instruction, Mom started using the palm sander on the walls.  It was noisy, but quite effective (although I'm not sure she's going to be able to put her hands over her head tomorrow).  

Then, she burnished the whole thing.  If you look closely, the top half of this wall is done, in comparison to the lower half, which hadn't been sanded yet.  So, while they do love the Behr paint, Mom thinks that the Venetian Plaster from Lowe's is a little easier to work with.

So, she's done with what has to be done right now.  She's waiting for the floor and shower install before finishing out around the shower and sealing the whole room.  That means more spackle knifing! I am sure she's super-excited.  Anyway, we're all beat, so we're heading to bed.  Hope you enjoyed the long weekend and the long update!

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