Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Slide on over and powder your nose

Last week K and I began talk of renovating the main floor powder room. When we first moved in we painted the entire main floor as soon as our 1 year was up. I love the colour of the powder room but it doesn't seem to flow with the rest of the house. So K and I started talking about re painting it. This snow balled from a simple paint job into;
- pocket door
- new light fixture
- paint the entire room
- tile behind the toilet
- replace the light fixture
- install two shelves above the toilet

We enlisted "Handy Man" (my dad) for his help

"Trusty Apprentice" was in charge of the shop vac duties

I didn't get a picture before we took the mirror down, so here is the space where the mirror used to be along with the hideous builders light fixture.

Below is the corner where the toilet is. I know the angle is funny, the room is only 35" wide by 80" long. It's a tiny powder room. Hopefully when the room is finished the after pictures will be better.

K and Handy Man in the process of removing the existing door and tearing down the frame work. See that other door behind K? That's the laundry room door. When the two are open the hit one another - great design builder! Other than being very irritating, this poses a problem for Milo. His litter is in the laundry room and if the door gets pushed shut when you use the bathroom, then he defers to his own plan b, pee at the front door. Hence the need for the pocket door. Not to mention I love pocket doors.

View from inside the bathroom. Our first issue, the light and fan switches were on the wall where the pocket door needed to be. So Handy Man and K had to completely rewire the entire circuit and move the switches to the other side of the door. The hole below the switch is where the toilet paper switch used to be. I cut it out to re use it on the other side.

Step one of electrical rewiring - join existing main wire with a new main wire in a junction box. Dad says it's code that anytime you join wires you need to enclosed them in a box. This protects the wall and wood from fire.

Step two: Run the wires across the top of the door and down the left side of the wall. One blue wire is for the fan, one blue wire is for the light. The two white wires are the main power and the power source that runs into the family room. Yes that's right the main power source for our entire family room runs from this little tiny powder room. Kind of funny? Oh here's a great tip, use painters tape to mark which each wire is. You never want to have to try to "figure it out" when you get to the other side. Also draw the existing switch box on a piece of paper (we used some of the demo drywall) and mark where all the wires go into the switches. This will help to ensure none of your wires get crossed.

Finally, the wires emerge on the other side through the hole that Handy Man made. Boy did my mom flip when she saw that Handy Man was using my sink as a tool chest. She quickly grabbed some newspaper and protected the sink from scratches. I wasn't too worried.

Final step: replace switch cover and tada!
The switches are now on the other side of the door.

Next was wall demo. the drywall was removed from both sides and so were the vertical beams. Very important, make sure the wall you are cutting into isn't a load bearing wall. If it is you will need to re enforce all of the new post and cross beams to withstand the weight. Lucky for us the wall wasn't load bearing.

Home Depot carrys two options for the frame work. You can by the hardware and make the frame and track yourself. Or you can buy the prefab frame that comes with everything you need to install the pocket door. We opted for the prefab option since neither Handy Man nor K had ever installed a pocket door before and we weren't sure how difficult it was. Not to mention the frame has to be pretty darn level and square, otherwise the door won't glide easily.

Here's a picture of the door from the inside, in it's "pocket"

The last step of the weekend was to install the new drywall and the door jam/track. This weekend K will be helping his brother build a dock at his cottage. Handy Man will be returning to help me mud and sand the new drywall. Stay tuned for more.


Simone said...

Wow, looks good. I love pocket doors. I'm sure it will be lovely. If I ever get a powder room in our basement I would love to have pocket doors.
Can't wait to see the end result.

Jess said...

what a project! can't wait to see the new! i love pocket doors...we have one for our bathroom and laundry room....although most guests are puzzled when they first use them...they spin around a few times looking for the door! too funny! i love all of your projects!