Saturday, April 17, 2010

The Hallway Ceiling Saga

Ranch style homes. Everybody knows that they are objectively the best home design in human history. Simple, functional, elegant. One of the most well-recognized features of ranchers is their long, straight hallways. We have one. You may remember our hallway from such videos as that way-too-long timelapse of me stumbling my way through installing hardwoods.

P.S. Look how awesome it turned out (although this is pre paint and baseboards):

Well, since these hallways are what feels like 50 feet long, our lighting seemed to be a bit on the, oh, how shall I say it?, I-can't-see-anything-I'm-sorry-mom-I-haven't-been-eating-my-carrots-even-though-you-said-superman-ate-them side. We had one fixture near the entrance of the hall, and that was it. One light and then 500 feet to go. There were many-a-night where, on the trek back to our bedroom, I would become unsure of myself and have to call out to Natalie to come find me in the abyss.

Simple solution? Another light fixture!

We found this fixture at CSN Lighting. $18 a pop. Simple, functional, elegant. Perfect for our humble abyss.
As soon as the fixtures arrived, I spent 20 minutes replacing the existing fixture, then ran the wiring in the attic and had the new fixture installed in another 30 minutes. Oh, wait.

Mr. Graham got a bit wobbly in the attic, and being frustrated at his horrible lack of balance, got angry and kicked his foot through the ceiling! 30 minute project just turned into a 2 week project. Which brings us to...

How to Fix Your Ceiling When You Put Your Foot Through It

  1. Put a hole in your ceiling. Be creative! (pictured above)

  2. Mark all extremities of wonky-shaped hole and create a square. Extend square as far as you need to expose half of nearest rafers in order to fasten the drywall. If that is impossible, put a 2x4 above drywall and attach to neighboring drywall for support.

     3. Do your standard taping/bedding magic.

    4. Texture to match, which we all know is 100% impossible, so let's just call it what it really is: texture to make it look good enough to not notice every time you walk by.

    5. Prime your new ceilingbaby up.

    6. Paint your ceiling the same way you just got done doing a few short weeks ago. Disregard blotchiness-- wet paint.

    7. And after all of that, install your new light fixture, thus allowing you to travel your hallway safely for years to come.

P.S. Our bathroom door is uneven for no reason. Well, probably for the same reason as only having one light.


Leah@Storybook Ranch said...

wow~ It looks flawless! You are a much better dry-waller than I. Great job & great light :)

We've lived in our house for 5+ yrs & have never been in the attic crawlspace, because I just know we'd come falling down through the ceiling.

Mick said...

Great job, Your instructions made me laugh! Its really coming along for you guys can't wait to see the finished product!

Eartha Kitsch said...

Oh no! We have the same hall and sometimes while making a trip to the bathroom in the dark of night, I completely lose my sight all together and have to yell to my husband, "newborn baby kitten! newborn baby kitten!" which means that I am completely blind and that he needs to turn on a light for me to make it back to the bedroom.

These halls are suckers to paint too because paint never, ever looks like it does on paint chips due to the lack of light in the hall.

Great job on fixing that hole and the light!

lindsay said...

Love this post~
Really good tutorial!!


Heather said...

Love it! Hilarious! This is totally something we would do. The foot through the ceiling. Not the impeccable drywalling. Awesome post!

Heather @ REOlisticRenovation