No matter that the yin yang symbol is black and white, life simply isn’t.
We went for a shade of grey as we transformed our timber floors from old to not new, but much better.
(note feature image is NOT our house, sigh)
The original parquetry, circa early 1990’s, had aged to an awful orange sheen. Plus we’d had a water leak in our ensuite that required replacement of a section of boards in the hallway, which then remained unstained Tassie Oak, for the last 18 months or more.
My interior designer alter ego has been getting pretty antsy about the unfinished state of our house for some time, and with Ruffus the Wrecker only making matters worse it was well past time to try to turn the house from trash can (ok slight exaggeration) to show home (OK big exaggeration).
Starting with the timber floors (actually we’ve been in the process of slowly renovating for several years, sigh – a lesson in yin patience).
(I didn’t take the obligatory before shot, so here’s an image from a video of me doing the #22pushups, #22days challenge to raise awareness for veterans mental health and suicide prevention, to show the ugly orange before)
We could have called in the professionals, but hey $$$, so hubby hired a giant sander, plus a smaller edge sander and a big buffing machine and then we needed the floor stain itself, reducer to tone down the intensity of the black colour, sealer, and two different top coatings. Still cost us over $1k.
Did I mention it was a simple exercise!!
Plus since the floor redo covered the lounge, dining and down the hallway it meant that half of the house including the bedrooms and our two bathrooms were effectively cut off during the process. We moved the furniture into the family room and could still use the kitchen and enter the house via the office. But going to the toilet, taking a shower and sleeping required climbing in and out of our ensuite window to avoid wet floors, while the kids camped out in our bedroom for the best part of a week.
Fun and games.
The thing is the floors looked really good when they were sanded back to their raw Tassie Oak – promising quite a nice timber grain and no more ugly orange.
Hubby didn’t mention until later the difficulty he’d had navigating the big sander in the tighter entrance area while trying to sand with the grain rather than against it. Plus there was the colour variation of the timber that had faded near a big window, which we tried to address with a heavier cover of stain, which only left the area darker.
A floor can look perfectly sanded but appearances can be deceptive.
Once you apply a stain even the slightest grooves (that you can’t see or feel) seemingly turn into giant gouges, and (note to self) when you try to sand things out it can make matters worse.
So the upshot – the floors aren’t perfect – they weren’t before and they aren’t now, but I still really like them. They have character (and rugs will be placed strategically at the front entrance and in front of the sofa near the window)!
And the lessons, because there are always lessons (like hire a professional next time).
Character is found in the grooves and the gouges, the scars and stains of a normal life, not a perfect one. A ‘perfect’ surface is just a foil for what’s deeper down, even the flaws that you can’t see. But it is what’s deep down that really counts.
Your true colours shine through with imperfections, not despite them. In fact they shine through in your imperfections.
The mark of true character is endurance, including enduring change and the scars it leaves behind.
Embrace change, but don’t be in a rush – we’re still to put back all the furniture and we’re repainting the walls. We have to wait on a new rug, wall lights and blinds but have put in a new display cabinet (Ikea $129). Edit out what isn’t important and make special places for what means the most. Oh and be patient – both the rug and wall lights purchased online are suddenly ‘out of stock’, so it will be almost Christmas before we are complete – eek Christmas isn’t that far away).
Here’s a sneak peak.
Do you agree that imperfections are what create character? Can you believe Christmas is just over 10 weeks away?
Linking up with Grace for FYBF.