Let’s head upstairs now! From the landing at the top of the stairs, there is a bedroom to the left with it’s own bathroom, and to the right is another bedroom with it’s own bathroom. I’ll cover the bathrooms in a separate post.
This is the bedroom on the left. Besides the smell (which I’ll explain later), the first thing we noticed upstairs was how absolutely GIGANTIC the bedrooms were!
It may be hard to get a sense of scale in these pictures, but they are just huge – much bigger than the master bedroom even! There is more than enough room to create multiple functional areas within each room.
The other upstairs bedroom to the right was somehow even larger than the first bedroom.
The dormer windows just killed me with cuteness!
There’s a small closet there on the left and a walk-in closet on the right.
There was some pretty intense water damage from the old roof, so we were relieved to have the roof replaced right away.
The absolute first priority inside the house was removing the dark navy carpet…because it was covered with a large number of animal messes. I don’t know how long the “messes” were there before we were under contract, but afterwards they had to remain there for a few months as we waited to close on the house (due to it being a foreclosure and also because of our construction loan). While we had to wait (impatiently), the “organic material” sat there, boarded up throughout the hot & humid Alabama summer months, without air conditioning or air flow, so you can imagine how the smell intensified and infused the upstairs. I can vividly remember that scent even 2 years later!
Phil was tossing the carpet pieces over the balcony down to the foyer. The resulting pet hair/dust clouds didn’t seem to help the air quality situation!
The smell was still really intense even after the carpet was out of the house. We weren’t sure if we could count on that to subside over time with proper air flow, or if it had possibly permeated the plywood subfloor. We weren’t about to take any chances, so we chose to seal the subfloor with a thick coat of Kilz Oil-Based primer.
At this time, we also had a drywaller repair all of the water-damaged spots.
I know that carpet is a standard choice for upstairs bedrooms, but we decided to replace it with hardwood for a few reasons. Not only is it just my personal preference for decorating with rugs and for life with pets, but we needed to install the flooring upstairs right away before any of the construction downstairs even began. We would be living upstairs throughout the renovation, so we needed a finished floor quickly so we could move our furniture in – and carpet installed this early on would never survive the renovation below. I choose a solid, slightly distressed, warm medium-toned hardwood that I felt coordinated well with the rustic wood on the landing.
After the Kilz dried on the subfloor, the smell was no longer an issue so we knew we were safe to have the hardwood installed. We saved some money on the installation by carrying all of those boxes up the stairs on our own – which was a pretty intense workout!
We didn’t have the quarter-round installed yet and we hadn’t repainted yet, but just the hardwood added such a homey warmth throughout the upstairs that I really loved. The left bedroom became our storage room, and this room became our “studio apartment” where we survived throughout the renovation. I was so thankful for the absurd size of this room, because instead of just functioning as a bedroom, we were also able to have enough space to set up a little “living” area with a love seat and TV, and a “kitchenette” with a toaster oven and a small table and chairs, haha! It was far from glamorous, but it got us through this experience!
The bedrooms looked like clean fresh slates once we repainted the walls and trim.
Unfortunately I did zero decorating up here – just plopped down whatever random furniture we had just to give some sense of scale as to how big these rooms are. I would love to see how someone might set it up as a kid’s dream room with a play area or game table, or a spacious guest suite with living space. It could be pretty wonderful!
I was really pleased with how the hardwood looked next to the rustic wood on the landing – almost like it was one large chunk of wood.
It’s too bad that these before & after shots can’t display the most important improvement – the smell!! (or lack-there-of!)
Paint colors used:
Bedroom Walls: Behr Spanish Sand
Landing Walls: Behr White Mocha
Trim: Behr 75% White Mocha
Hardwood Flooring: Lumber Liquidators Virginia Mill Works 3/4″ x 5″ Paradise Valley Oak