Saturday, May 2, 2015

Installing Unfinished Pine Floors--*Ourselves*!

Back when our son Finn was 3 and our daughter Annie was not yet born, my husband and I decided to pull up *all* the flooring in our house, which was primarily white carpet--which was no longer white because it was so old! We installed unfinished pine boards....ourselves.  Which my husband hand-sanded on his hands and knees with an orbital sander because a drum sander on soft pine frightened him. And then I came along and stained the wood board-by-board on my hands and knees while 6+ months pregnant (I wore a NIOSH-approved mask).  And then I got to do the fun part, which was finishing it all with Bona Traffic (a product I dearly love now). 

It was a lot of work. 

I chose pine because it is inexpensive, I loved how knotty it is, and I knew that with a large dog and young children it *would* be scratched, so I did not want to choose a beautiful floor that would show every scratch. If it's going to get scratched I thought I should just embrace that this is my life.  Five years later I am still loving my floors.

White carpet in a bedroom:

We did all the work ourselves, so we had to live for a few months in a state of flux.  Here's the "plywood subfloor" stage! Wood was stacked all over the place, acclimating to its new environment.

Raw wood, installed.



The guy at the flooring store implored me not to use this soft white pine on floors.  He insisted that it was meant for planking walls, making bookshelves...anything but flooring! I ignored him. 

I did take a protective measure by putting a large rug under our dining table so the chairs would not make too many divots as they were scooted when my husband and I stood up from the table. 

Here is a photo from a few months ago--the pine looks so pretty to me, still.  And don't fret: my house is not usually this tidy. There are usually stacks of books on the coffee table, for starters! And toys, stray socks, and other signs of life that show that people live and love here (we do try to pick up each night). It was super-tidy on this particular day because I had been fall-cleaning.

This is one of many, many DIY projects my husband and I have undertaken over the years.  I love thinking about how much money we have saved!  And I also love thinking about never doing it again!

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