Tuesday, October 7, 2014

The Drywall Files

One step closer! The walls in the bathroom have gone up in the last couple weeks thanks to hard work on Bob's part and lots of drywall mud thanks to our friendly neighborhood Ace Hardware.

First up was the drywall. We bought water resistant cement board, as suggested, but ran into an issue - the cement board is 1/2 inch thick as opposed to the 5/8 thick drywall alongside the new stuff. Because things weren't lining up, we had our work cut out for us when it came to the mudding prep. 
If something looks new in the photo above, you can thank Bob for having the idea to build out a shelf within our tub space! We had been considering a built in space to hold shampoos and such, but after dealing with a bump out space at the end of the tub we decided to use the space to our advantage. We used metal stud material to create the height and width we needed - and wouldn't you know it, it perfectly fits our 3 inch wide tiles!
After Bob had cut every piece to size and attached to the studs with drywall screws, he taped up the joints and corners. We used mesh tape that was touted as alkaline resistant (to complement our water-free cement board!). He also installed several corner beads.
1 pre-mixed container and 1 bag of joint compound later we were in business. Using the pre-mixed stuff first helped us determine what consistency our self-mixed batches needed to be, so we were glad for the extra purchase. 
We picked up 3 levels of drywall knives. The smallest was used first for all of our tough to reach crevices. Drywall patches also came in handy for a couple larger holes created during our thermostat move. 
A medium sized drywall knife did the majority of the work to spread things around and then the 12 inch knife made it all as even as could be. 
Our original thought was: "okay, we'll mud tonight and paint tomorrow - easy peasy." Easy not peasy, actually. Our drying time took longer than expected and the scope of the job wore us out quicker than we thought. So instead it was over the course of a few days that we made sure the job was done and several go-rounds later we were in a place to finish off these now-smooth walls.
Then we finally came to the fun part - painting party! Near the start of our remodel, we picked up fifty three shades of gray to try out on the wall. Cathedral Gray and Pencil Sketch from Behr and Seal Gray from Glidden. 
With the samples up on the wall, we quickly realized which one was juuuust riiiiight. Pencil Sketch was our middle ground - not too dark to blend right into our charcoal floor tiles, not too light to fade into our shimmering ice wall tile.
With a gallon of Behr in our hands and a couple new brushes, we got to it. 
I also made an impulse purchase at Home Depot and picked up this 3 dollar paint can lid with pour spout. We always make such a mess with our paint down the sides of the can - I was instantly enamored of this guy!
2 coats later and we were feeling pretty good about it all. 
We realized we have some touch up work to do and a late realization that we need to dig into the wall again to create additional support for the pedestal sink is causing us to groan, but just adding that layer of paint helped us really feel like we turned a corner with this project! 
And after a week that saw floor tile finished and a toilet installed, we're in the home stretch now!

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