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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Des Plaines, IL
    Posts
    9,560

    Thumbs up Tearing into summer...

    For the past year, my S.O. and I have not only been busy fighting mother nature at her finest, but putting forth a ton of effort to reinvigorate the interior of the house. Last Thanksgiving and Christmas, the south end of the living room was tackled, by enlarging the southern portal into the kitchen from 32" inches to a full 48", it opened the room up completely, allowing for easier negotiating by people we had over during the holidays. I knew the additional eight-inch width was a success, not by the compliments it got, but by the reduced number of accidents, "dropsies" and complaints. There weren't any.

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    Also, removing the old stone fireplace and replacing it with a new marble, granite & wood construct certainly brightened the room. We even had recessed electrical outlets placed in the top and a new wall switch, so that Christmas decorations could be easily operated upon it, without the nonsense of draped wiring all over it. Due to contractor obligations, the electrical was recently completed.

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    This summer, we have decided to go after the northern part of the kitchen and enlarge the second portal into it. Instead of the door framed 28" passage that existed (hardly useful), it is now a full 36" wide and the door frame removed, giving it a uniform portal appearance, like the other end. Organization in the kitchen had changed, also... having to remove the 30" wide refrigerator from the one side to the other side of the portal. Believe me, it's not an easy change, as 'muscle memory' has you going to its original location, more often than not.

    As if that were not enough, the bedroom across the hall is being opened up, removing its projecting close and another wall portal placed in the room, to allow it to become a semi-formal dining room. Completion of this aspect is the true masterpiece of all the reconstruction, as you can look from the kitchen's sink, on one side of the house, and see into both rooms on the opposing side. This could never be done before, from that location. Call it "Mom control!"

    Once I get the pictures organized, I will add them to this posting. The place is a true mess, but the weird part is... I can see the finish line. Through my photography exercises and efforts, I can conceptualize and visualize the end product. My friends, that is cool.
    Last edited by DonSchap; 08-01-2011 at 12:44 PM.
    Don Schap - BFA, Digital Photography
    A Photographer Is Forever
    Look, I did not create the optical laws of the Universe ... I simply learned to deal with them.
    Remember: It is usually the GLASS, not the camera (except for moving to Full Frame), that gives you the most improvement in your photography.

    flickr & Sdi

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Des Plaines, IL
    Posts
    9,560

    Red face The second phase...

    So... the summer of solace is the tearing down and refashioning of the main hall of the house.

    This gets messy... as we begin with moving the refrigerator from its old home on the left side (in the corner) to the right side, then framing the 28-inch wide, 7-foot high kitchen entrance to its new 32-inch, 7-1/2-foot tall size. Looking through the passage, you see the hall wall to be removed.

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    Below is the original right-side wall of the hall... or also-known-as the back-side of the closet to be demolished. It being there made for a very narrow hallway (Note the cold air return grill at the bottom of the wall ... that will have to be relocated).

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    Looking from the opposite end, that right wall and most of the offending closet is demolished, leaving the two-foot wide side wall stub, which has to be removed, also. We covered the cold air return hole, in the floor, with a solid two-by-four to prevent anyone from stepping into it.

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    Drywall is attached to the altered framing of the kitchen wall, allowing a semi completed wall and full entrance portal to exist... and safely hide the electrical switches.

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    Here, with that two-foot section of the old closet's side wall removed, you can plainly see the improved hall width we are going for, taking the rather impractical and narrow hall to its full five-foot width. It now provides a nice swing to the upstairs entrance. The instant opening into the new dining doesn't hurt, either.

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    The next part removes that "first door," on the right side, walling it up and rebuilding the cold-air duct work that was lost by the removal of the closet wall.
    Last edited by DonSchap; 08-20-2011 at 11:12 AM.
    Don Schap - BFA, Digital Photography
    A Photographer Is Forever
    Look, I did not create the optical laws of the Universe ... I simply learned to deal with them.
    Remember: It is usually the GLASS, not the camera (except for moving to Full Frame), that gives you the most improvement in your photography.

    flickr & Sdi

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Des Plaines, IL
    Posts
    9,560

    Thumbs up The hall closes in...

    So, again, the home project continues as the old bedroom door becomes a wall, interior CAT6 network wiring is run to all the rooms, supplied from a new 24-port PoE Gigabit switch (Note the repositioned duct work at the base). Cable has also been rerouted throughout this area for the cable television service, in an effort to eliminate the twenty-years of room jumping we had done under the carpets, going from RG-59 to RG-8 and the super-shielded, high-freqency, digital whatnot.

    I figure if we can "hardwire" the centralized printer, we can pick up on the throughput. Oh, it was okay, I guess, on "wireless"... but, then again, the actual speed difference has yet to be calculated. At least I, now, have the option.

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    The sheet rock goes up... sealing it all and it actually starts to look like something.

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    The left side hall... with the entrances to the kitchen, upstairs, linen, home theater and 1st floor bathroom.

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    and the right side... again, the bathroom, home office, and the new dining/conference room area.

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    Now, to mud and seal all that.
    Last edited by DonSchap; 08-20-2011 at 11:43 AM.
    Don Schap - BFA, Digital Photography
    A Photographer Is Forever
    Look, I did not create the optical laws of the Universe ... I simply learned to deal with them.
    Remember: It is usually the GLASS, not the camera (except for moving to Full Frame), that gives you the most improvement in your photography.

    flickr & Sdi

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Des Plaines, IL
    Posts
    9,560

    Lightbulb The man behind the plan... an "Environmental" Portrait

    Getting a little ahead of the project, I had a lighting assignment involving three-point lighting, so I chose to take the Carpenter's image.

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    I figure he deserves his accolades for getting this project completed in timely fashion.
    Last edited by DonSchap; 08-19-2011 at 02:14 AM.
    Don Schap - BFA, Digital Photography
    A Photographer Is Forever
    Look, I did not create the optical laws of the Universe ... I simply learned to deal with them.
    Remember: It is usually the GLASS, not the camera (except for moving to Full Frame), that gives you the most improvement in your photography.

    flickr & Sdi

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Des Plaines, IL
    Posts
    9,560

    Wood Wood... on the floor, is this reconstruct a real bore?

    Well, you can see the mudding is, for the most part, complete. The floor, happily, is also.

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    We are replacing the old room doors with three new "six-panel" doors and a darn 16", "three panel" linen closet door, that actually costs 50% more than any one of the other three. There is a lot to be said about conformity.

    It has been a pretty good week for the project... most of the truly dramatic alterations are, for the most part, over. Of course, the wood floor "leveling" with the sander is a pretty heavy shock wave to a household, but that will have to take place later. For now, a coat of varnish should merge the wood together, color-wise. The improvement to the household has yet to be realized, as the original entrance to the upstairs has been widened and heightened, allowing for much larger furniture to be taken up there. It was one of the more restrictive elements to the house.

    Creative use of holes, I guess. The house just has a much more inviting and "open" feel to it, even as the construction continues.
    Last edited by DonSchap; 08-20-2011 at 11:03 AM.
    Don Schap - BFA, Digital Photography
    A Photographer Is Forever
    Look, I did not create the optical laws of the Universe ... I simply learned to deal with them.
    Remember: It is usually the GLASS, not the camera (except for moving to Full Frame), that gives you the most improvement in your photography.

    flickr & Sdi

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Des Plaines, IL
    Posts
    9,560

    Thumbs up Final touches

    Yes, the project, for this year is over.

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    SONY a850 w/ TAMRON 14mm f/2.8 - Natural Light w/ tripod 2" exposure

    Has a completed feel to it. Although you do get some funny angle when you are off square. I wanted to show the detail on the doors.

    So, here is the more square angle.

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    SONY a850 w/ SIGMA 12-24mm f/4-5.6 - Natural Light w/ tripod 2" exposure

    This hall is five feet across and is the center of the house, in an effort to give it an "openess" we have never enjoyed. It really is a cool change. As soon as we get things shifted around a little more, for the next step, I will photograph the "overall look" to the room, to try and capture the "wide-feel" it has.
    Last edited by DonSchap; 09-30-2011 at 07:14 PM.
    Don Schap - BFA, Digital Photography
    A Photographer Is Forever
    Look, I did not create the optical laws of the Universe ... I simply learned to deal with them.
    Remember: It is usually the GLASS, not the camera (except for moving to Full Frame), that gives you the most improvement in your photography.

    flickr & Sdi

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Posts
    2,562
    Looks great!! What is next on the Honeydew List????


    Frank
    Sony A77
    Sony A580
    Sony A 100
    Maxxum 400si.
    Sony 18-70 Kit Lens
    Minolta AF 35-70
    Minolta AF 50 f/1.7
    Tamron 70-300 f/4-5.6 Di LD
    Tamron 60mm Macro
    Tamron 17-50 f/2.8
    Tamron 2x Converter
    Sony HVL-F42AM
    Quantaray 70-300 4.5-5.6 Macro
    Slingshot 200 Bag



    http://www.flickr.com/photos/22083244@N06/

    http://s305.photobucket.com/albums/nn219/sparkie1263/

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Des Plaines, IL
    Posts
    9,560
    Thanks, Frank. On the "dew" list... that would be that open area to the right... the new dining room. Since you asked:

    1. the current rug (throw away) gets pulled,
    2. the current wallpaper gets yanked,
    3. the walls are tidied up for painting,
    4. the paint is applied (the S.O. is talking about a "peacock blue," to go along with the Oriental theme),
    5. a new lighting fixture in the ceiling,
    6. the wood floor gets cleaned,
    7. the Oriental rug goes down,
    8. the current Amish "kitchen table" become the "dining room" table,
    9. the tall-backed Oriental dining chairs surround it,
    10. the 7' Oriental wall hanging goes up,
    11. the buffet and china cabinet set go in on either side of the table,


    Cripes, I'm out of breath just thinking about it. Then... back to the kitchen, for its reconditioning. You really do not want to know. That one... will not be cheap.
    [list][*] Wall repair, [*] insulation, [*] new cabinetry, [*] some shelving, [*] a new food preparation area, next to the stove, [*] a new range hood for venting fumes, [*] some flooring repair, [*] a mobile island.

    The entire bottom of the house will be unrecognizable from what it looked like only a couple years ago.

    The city engineer came out, today, and we discussed the drainage issue that has been endured by the neighborhood. I don't know exactly how they are going to solve it, but at least they cannot say there were not aware of the issue, should things get worse and lawsuits are filed. I really never considered an indoor pool.
    Last edited by DonSchap; 09-30-2011 at 07:10 PM.
    Don Schap - BFA, Digital Photography
    A Photographer Is Forever
    Look, I did not create the optical laws of the Universe ... I simply learned to deal with them.
    Remember: It is usually the GLASS, not the camera (except for moving to Full Frame), that gives you the most improvement in your photography.

    flickr & Sdi

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