I’ve always marveled at “do it yourselfer’s” who take on all or most of the their home improvement projects. For myself, well….while I can do just about anything, it will take me 3 times longer than anyone else and will make 4 to 5 additional trips to the local box store. And sadly, truth be told, I really do not enjoy home reno’s – just not my thing. This is proof that opposites do attract as my lovely wife who I like to affectionately refer to as the Dragon Lady can truly do anything and always with a smile on her face – in fact, I’m not sure that there is anything that makes her happier.
I recall when picking her up on our very first date (seems like yesterday) she suggested I grab a beer in the fridge while she finished getting ready. As I grabbed the Fosters Larger and noticed the pizza box in the bottom (the only other item in the fridge), in the corner of my eye I could see 4 or 5 power tools at the top of the stairs. I had obviously struck a gold mine and the rest is history.
One last thing before she reviews her latest smaller project below. What I have learned over 30 years of marriage is while sometimes you do have to spend a few dollars to satisfy the DIY project – but often reinventing what you have makes for the best outcome. If you notice, most of the projects on this blog are just that and that is the Dragon Lady’s real talent! Enjoy………
In our 130 year old house, some ledgestone had been installed in the downstairs powder room, next to our driveway entranceway, and family room. It had also been applied to a small wall between the doorway and the powder room.
Ledgestone is a thin layer of stone veneer. It is available in our local home improvement stores and is fairly easy to apply as a decorative wall treatment, giving sort of a modern but rustic look. I like the appearance of ledgestone in some places, but we didn’t feel it went with the century home look we were trying to achieve. The beauty of ledgestone is that it looks like stone or brick, but it is stacked tightly together so that it can be applied in sheets without grouting in-between the layers. Nevertheless, it wasn’t beautiful to us in it’s odd location.
We believe the ledgestone was originally installed in the powder room to cover up a wall that was placed a few inches over the wall behind to cover up for the fact that the original plumbing fixtures were installed a few inches into the room. Hmmm, instead of solving a plumbing problem, a false wall was created to cover up the problem, and then stone veneer was required to further cover up. Then there was some brick left over, so why not do another wall? That sounds like something I would do…….
But late one very cold winter night last winter, before we were worried about pandemics, we had a pipe freeze, and in our attempt to solve that problem, we made many holes in the ledgestone wall, which happily required us to remove the ledgestone and renovate the fix up the bathroom a little. (click her for previous post about the powder room).
With that all done we were left with a lonely ledgestone wall with nothing to match it. We were not looking for any big projects though, and thought instead of wacking it down and having to fix the wall, could we just paint it to match the fiireplace brick across the room?
Not to mention that we didn’t want to visit the home improvement store, with it’s crazed pandemic customer lineups to buy some special paint product. From our leftover paint supply, we had a half of a litre of off-white latex paint that had been used to paint the fireplace trim (from our Gas Fireplace Makeover – click for link)
It was fairly thick, as I apparently didn’t put the paint lid back on tightly enough way back then. I was thinking that a thin wash of paint might be appropriate for the textured finish of the veneer, so we added about 2 cups of water and stirred up the mixture. We (OK, it was all my husband, but I can take credit for mixing the paint can’t I?) brushed it on lightly over the entire surface, and into the little cracks.
The project went fairly quickly (easy for me to say) and the paint dried evenly. The finished wall almost matches the brick across the room, and the thin paint layer has NOT scratched or rubbed off, even though the wall is in a high traffic area. (You know – between the entranceway and the bathroom……). I think that the thin paint must have soaked into the veneer a little bit, and it kind of makes our ledgestone wall disappear.
Perhaps we should have removed the ledgestone, but we knew it would be difficult to knock it off the wall, and we try to limit my drywall repair to small areas, that aren’t highly visible (as my drywall taping and mudding tends to be a tad lumpy). This little project was no cost and relatively painless, and made something that didn’t fit in disappear. You can’t beat that can you?