• Tell Your Friends

I’ve been teasing you all month with words like “Scandinavian-inspired,” “rustic,” and “modern,” and you’re probably ready to see some serious eye candy, right? Don’t worry; next week we’ll be sharing a killer new video featuring our idea book of inspirational photos.

BUT FIRST! You can’t truly appreciate our inspiration until you see how far we’ve come, yes? I’ve enlisted the help of Husband to show a bit of our demolition progress, which is anything but pretty. He’s got some super handy tips (I’d read them while watching this great demo video) that I like to call, “Husband’s Tips to Avoid a Demo Disaster.” Alternatively titled: “How To Stay Married During a Gut Renovation.”


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1. Snap it. First things first: document everything. Take photos, videos…whatever you’ve got. And no, the reason isn’t so that you can look back with the pride reserved for your firstborn child and say, “Look at what I did!” although that’s certainly a plus.

The real reason? You need to stay in tune with any changes that are happening with the structure. By taking as many photos as possible (preferably floor-to-ceiling shots) and as frequently possible, you’ll notice small changes that are happening over time.

See the crack? Or are you too busy checking out that totally rockin' plaid couch in the den?

See the crack? Or are you too busy checking out that totally rockin' plaid couch in the den?

Case in point: Check out the red arrows in the photo above, which show a crack in the ceiling that stretches from our hallway to the corner of what was once the pantry. Because we already knew the crack was there, we saved ourselves the heartache of thinking we’d caused it after removing an important load-bearing wall. On the flip side, we can keep an eye on the crack to be sure it’s not growing or changing in any way.

2. Pause. Timing is everything, and it’s sometimes easy to get carried away with the sledgehammer. BUT — before you start going hammer-happy, think about your next steps. Will you need electrical outlets in any odd places? Are you moving plumbing? When in doubt, call the experts before you start removing studs.

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For example, we had a few friends ready to break down some walls on a particular weekend, but our electrician wasn’t scheduled to arrive until the following Monday. So, we removed everything green in the photo above, while leaving all studs marked in blue. This way, there was plenty of room to play around with outlets when our electrician arrived, but we didn’t have to turn down a weekend of free help.

3. Always, always wear protective glasses. Your wife will make fun of your bug eyes, but she won’t be laughing when you’re half blind (or will she?).

4. Know what lies beyond your walls. Always assume you’ve got electrical wire behind a wall, so practice caution when removing anything you can’t see. For everything else, get out that handy flashlight!

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5. Get it over with. Demolition works best when done all at once, for a lot of reasons. Not only will you work faster without distractions, but you can also clean up in one fell swoop, rather than having to mark off separate spaces of the home. Bonus? If you’re renting a dumpster for clean-up, you can purchase a few consecutive days, rather than racking up massive costs with multiple visits.

P.S. Next week? A don’t-miss. In addition to our latest video, we’ll be talking mold removal! Eek!

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Design Inspiration

4 Responses

  1. [...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by design for mankind, HGTV Decorating. HGTV Decorating said: Demo Disasters: I’ve been teasing you all month with words like “Scandinavian-inspired,” “rustic,” and “modern,” a… http://bit.ly/8XXp28 [...]

  2. [...] Scoop -Scandinavian Style at Barn Light Electric -Faceted Plants at ReadyMade Mag (pictured above) -Demo Disasters at HGTV.com -Guest Blog: Beach Finds at IndieFixx -Design by Animals at ReadyMade Mag Share: No [...]

  3. ddl says:

    It is interesting that on all of the renovation shows that I watch on TV — or view on this web-site, NEVER have I seen or read that, if you're making structural or electrical, major plumbing changes to a residence, you MUST HAVE THE PLANS APPROVED BY YOUR LOCAL BUILDING DEPARTMENT. Making structural/plumbing/electrical changes, without the necessary city and municipal approvals, is unwise and could lead to dangerous, unsafe consequences, in the future. For instance, "Mickie Mouse" electrical changes , without a permit, could result in a fire, folks. The plans MUST be approved by "the city." City Building codes are made for the safety of the people who will live in those structures.

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