A blog about the restoration, remodel and renovation of a 1929 Chicago-style brick bungalow

The Latest Bungalow Happenings

Making good on my goals for 2012, we’re in the middle of a couple of big projects (and they’ll likely be the last for a while as finances are tight tight tight). It didn’t help that we just returned from a nice little trip to Germany where I scored on this pristine vintage coffee tin at a flea market in Stuttgart.

We haven’t taken a proper vacation in many years, so I think it was well-deserved and totally worth it. We also managed to miss the hottest days of this year, so it was also well-timed! (The kittens were visited at least twice a day by both my mom and a friend, but they were very happy to have us back home.)

A few weeks before we left we dropped off the doors for the master bedroom/bath at The Wood Wizzard in Skokie, the same refinisher that the PO used for the main floor doors. They still had the record of that job from the early ’90s. We brought one of our previously-refinished doors to match along with a small piece of trim. We removed all the hardware ourselves to save some money. There were some small blemishes/chips that would have to be repaired, but otherwise they were still in pretty good shape. At least they were never painted.

They wanted to keep the small trim piece to match instead of the door we brought with, so I was a little disappointed when they were delivered yesterday and the new stain color had a bit more red in it than our existing doors do when compared side-by-side. I called them about it and they were very responsive to my complaint.

The owner came to the house to take a look at it and to discuss options. Because the doors won’t be installed next to or even on the same floor as all the other doors we decided to take the weekend to see how they look in different light in the master bedroom before doing anything, and that’s what you see here on the right.

They did a beautiful job with the finish though and while the match IS pretty close, it’s not exact. In the end we’re going to accept them as is, only because they won’t be installed anywhere near the others and I don’t think the color difference will be noticeable when going from one floor to the other. If they were to be installed on the main floor with the other doors I think I would have a problem with it. I would definitely still recommend them as refinishers, but I would only say that if you want or need something to match exactly — and this goes for ANY refinisher you use — provide the largest sample you can so that there’s a better representation of overall color. In hindsight I should have insisted that they keep the door we brought with to match rather than the trim as there is some subjectivity to color matching, especially on a small piece.

They also provided us with a quart of stain which we’ll need for our next project: The Second Floor Trim.

I’m not sure how many feet of poplar trim is sitting in our basement right now, but it’s a lot and we need to get it stained and varnished, like NOW because the trim carpenter will be ready to install it very soon. At least we know the trim will match the newly refinished doors exactly so that will save us time and effort.

I’ll get into the details about the trim in another post because this one is already getting long and I need to be productive and get something done! Happy Weekend!

1 Comment

  1. Devon @ Green House, Good Life on July 28, 2012 at 10:15 pm

    Good point about using the largest finish sample you have. We had our cabinets matched to our coffee table, and we actually dragged the coffee table to the cabinet shop because it was the only sample we had, but it was probably good that it was so big. They also did 6-8 samples for us from the table, so we were able to hone in on the exact formula before they started on the cabinets.

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