This is the second part of a 3-part series detailing an entire Gateway Kitchen + Bath renovation from start to finish. If you missed the first part, click here to read what happened during the first month! If you’ve ever wondered what it’s like to live through a renovation, the Veloso family was kind enough to take us along on their journey so you could see the good, the bad and the dusty!
So much has happened in the last weeks, but it feels like there is still so much to come!
For the last 4 days Wes Kasdorf has been taping and patching the drywall, it’s amazing how much it changes the look of the space. Every step makes it look and feel more finished, but having the walls closed in and where they belong helps so much to feel like you’re not living in a construction zone (as much). I can start to really see how the space is going to look and function.
(Side note: It’s been a real pleasure having Wes here, such a great guy to chat with, a really respectful, nice man!)
This week was my birthday and I left work early to enjoy the late afternoon with the family. They surprised me with decorations, over all the mess (Hah!) I felt so special! We had a lovely BBQ and champagne by the fire.
I had prepared myself for the dust, but to my surprise, sanding the drywall wasn’t nearly as bad as I was expecting. Wes did a great job of putting up plastic and sanding lightly to create as little dust as possible. He vacuumed and cleaned it all up after himself. I could not have been happier!
That said, we have hit the part in the renovation where little things start to go wrong.
I noticed the light fixtures were not moved to the new door location of the ensuite bathroom. The electrician came and moved it, but forgot to also move the thermostat for the floor heat. He was back the next day to move it as well. Everything was resolved quickly, but it was a bit stressful.
It’s definitely getting hard to live in the chaos and mess. I love a clean, organized, decorated space, so it’s very hard to fully relax and unwind when the house is pulled apart.
After drywall sanding comes painting. Such an exciting step! We are having the entire main floor painted at the same time, so we had to move all our stuff (again) so it would be out of the painter’s way.
All of our belongings were moved to the middle of the rooms and we left enough space for a ladder around the perimeter. As hard as it was living in this before, it’s even more so now, we pretty much have to be outside or in our basement. Nothing is where we need it and it feels like we need to hunt for everything.
Painting really cleans up the space and the walls look and feel so fresh and new!
However, we came across another problem in this stage. The ceiling paint colour we were putting in the renovated areas didn’t match the one our last contractor used. After many attempts to track it down, we finally decided to spend the extra money and just have all the ceiling repainted. It wasn’t cheap, especially because we’d only painted the ceiling about 2 years ago, but we want this renovation done right and now that we have one consistent colour any changes or fixes that come up in the future can be spot painted.
I love the wall colour! I was nervous when I first saw them putting it on that it was too dark, but now that they rolled more walls it’s perfect! Things are starting to get put back together.
The tile has started! I’m so excited to see how the tile I chose will look in the different rooms! There are so many different tiles that I love, and I was excited to use them.
Because the drywall taping and patching took a bit longer than we planned, the painters have had to overlap with the tile guys, but any concerns I had about that were for nothing, because they have been doing an amazing job working around each other.
The first day of tile was waterproofing and skim coat. This step is essential, but definitely not as exciting as the second day when we had a fully-laid tile floor in Amelia’s bathroom.
We also got to see the wood look tile (laid in a herringbone pattern) in our ensuite bathroom… it is beyond stunning and I’m so happy with the choice!
It feels so good to see the pretty stuff going in, but we came across another problem. It was a big one. The ensuite vanity ended up being too close to the walls so we had to reorder the countertops and vanity cabinets. I wasn’t happy that we had to change it, but I’m much more confident with the way the vanity is going to look and function now.
This was another big weekend for us. First came was Amelia’s sweet 16th Birthday. We tried to make it as special as possible with decorations in the basement. She was very happy.
Now that all the demo/drywall/painting is done. I was able to start cleaning up and putting things back. Mike and the kids spent father’s day golfing so I washed all the windows, floors and furniture. It was so dirty! I was absolutely exhausted after, but it felt so good to have our living spaces back.
On day 43 the tile was finished in Amelia’s bathroom and was grouted the next day. It looks amazing. So happy to see all the pretty stuff going in. Amelia is also very happy she gets to stay in her room for the rest of the week. She’s a teen who loves to sleep, so she had a really hard time getting out before the trades arrived in the morning. I had the tile guy texting me asking if they could get in her bathroom. Everyone is happy to see the spaces get back to a livable state.
The cabinets are going in! As each piece of the puzzle gets assembled, it’s so exciting to see the space I imagined come to life in my home. I’m finally able to start using the space as it’s intended and it feels amazing to be able to organize our stuff into all the new storage. The new walk-in closet for the master bedroom was such a treat to get clean and stocked. No more living off racks and out of bins! As hard as we tried to stay organized during the renovation, it feels so much better to finally be putting things where they belong! I’m going to stop sharing pictures so you don’t see too much before the final reveal, so watch for that in the days to come!
I didn’t realize how much I hated having to sweep bare plywood floors until the flooring started to go in. It made such a difference to the amount I needed to sweep and to the look of the space. Even though I know there are still a bunch of things to do, it feels livable again. I finally feel like I have my home back and that I can relax in my space. If friends come over, they likely wouldn’t notice most of the things that still need to be done. Almost all the boxes and bins of belongings are gone now, cleaned up and put away.
The countertops went in today and I’m so happy with how the space came together. It’s exactly how I imagined it to be and I can’t wait to decorate and stage the space again! Tomorrow will be an exciting day, as the plumber is coming to finish all the final plumbing, meaning we will be able to use all our bathrooms and showers! It’s been quite the journey as a family of teens and adults to be using a single bathroom. I’m really looking forward to having the new ensuite ready and not needing to share anymore.
It felt very finished, but there were still tons of little details that got completed during the last few days. From putting on light switch and outlet covers, to hanging mirrors and final trim, all of those small things came together fairly quickly, but it still took a few days. I can’t wait to reveal the final pictures and some parting thoughts and tips we learned over the last two months. Keep your eyes on this space for the final entry in this series!