How To Install a TV Wall Mount

A little while back when I had the Sanus wall mount giveaway, they offered me a mount as well. Which I happily accepted. It is full motion and tiltable– so cool! They said there was an easy 1, 2, 3 install process and I decided to put that to the test.

So here’s how it went, in picture progression:

On the instructions is a link to an under 5 minute install video, and you should totally watch it. It explains that the mount is universal and you are going to have far more screws and pieces then you actually need.

In instructions is a link to an under 5 minute install video, and you should totally watch it. It explains that the mount is universal and you are going to have far more screws and pieces then you actually need.

add brackets to tv

Once you’ve figured out what type of tv back you have (ours is flat), you can install the brackets accordingly. Don’t forget to account for where you will need to plug in your power cord and cables… we forgot. And then when we were completely done with the whole thing we had to take it down and adjust the brackets (which only took about 2 minutes, but was still very frustrating).

attach plate to wall

Installing the plate on the wall was by far the most challenging part of this, because we are absolutely deficient at centering things and keeping them level. Basically, we decided that visually the tv needed to be centered with the window sill. But the studs were not cooperating with that plan, so we attached the plate off center and then attached the mount off center on the plate but on center with the window sill. Does that make sense to you? That little pointy part above is the only part the tv actually hangs off of.

Once you’ve got the plate on the wall, and the mount attached to that, you hang your tv off that little arrow part, level it 700 times, then use one screw to attach the brackets on your tv to the wall mount.

wall mounted tv

The whole process took about 2 hours, because we had trouble figuring out where to put the plate and where on earth the studs were. But in the end, it looks freaking awesome and is a far safer option then having it propped up on old shelves behind a speaker.

My biggest tips would be to measure a million times and just drill once and also to check that things are level at every step of that game. But really, Sanus made it super easy and anyone can do this. You will need a second set of hands though.

We do plan on hiding the wires, but in the next few months we’re going to be installing a floor in the basement and to do so we’re going to have to move everything- so beautifying the room will come after that.

Thanks Sanus!!

Attack of the Stink Stairs: Part II

I know, I know- you’re wondering when on earth part I was. Yikes. I’m embarrassed to tell you that it was July 23, 2012. Ripping up carpet is THE WORST so basically I worked on it for one day and decided it was far too hot and awful and I’d do it in the winter.

So clearly, I got back to it yesterday… in a 90* heatwave.

Here’s the timeline: last July, I removed the carpet from 2.5 of our 8 stairs before I called it quits. Then, when our basement flooded the stairs got even stinkier and Matt removed carpet from another 2.5 stairs before calling it quits. Yesterday I finally got the rest of the beast up!

And to recap the how-to, since I had basically 0 readers at this time last year, these are the tools I used to rip up the stair carpet:

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I used the utility knife to cut up carpet and padding as I went, and the pliers to pull out staples too small for the screwdriver (use needle nose pliers, not the ones pictured). The crowbar plied up the carpet death strips (which are strips of nails used at the creases of your stairs to hold the carpet and padding down), the screwdriver pulled up more staples, and the hammer was to work the crowbar and screwdriver in underneath the  death strips and staples. It is not a fun process. You should also have a dust pan on hand because it gets nasty.

Here’s some tips:

  • Don’t do this in the middle of summer in an un-airconditioned house. You will want to die at least 3 times.
  • Once you think you’ve got all your staples pulled up, check again, you missed some. And then you know what, check a third time because there will still be more.
  • Sweep each stair as you free it from carpet, then sweep all the stairs once you’re done, then vacuum the stairs, then wash them. Then once they dry do that all again too. Where does the filth come from?!
  • Don’t try to hold back the swears, let them fly! Sometimes those stairs need to be told who’s boss.

 

Once the stairs were cleaned, I went back and spackled some spots where there were dings and dents (from prying out the staples). Are you supposed to spackle stairs? I don’t know. Seemed like a good idea though.

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Hopefully in the next week or two I will complete them, which entails the following:

  • Sand, sand, sand, then sand some more
  • Sweep and wash at least 3 times
  • Prime & Paint
  • Add carpet tiles to the top of each step (already purchased!)
  • Stencil the front kicks of each stairs (muah ha ha! I have a delicious idea for this!)

 

So as you can tell, I’m totally relaxing the week before my wedding. Living the life of leisure, if you will. …I promised Matt I’d go get my nails done tomorrow because at least then I’ll be forced to put. the. paint. brush. down.

How to hide your pesky wires!

On Monday I showed you some in progress photos of our movie room, and then on Wednesday Matt popped in to talk to you about our 7 speaker surround sound system and DIY subwoofer isolation pad.

That’s right, SEVEN speakers…. and you thought hiding the cord of a lamp was hard!

Psst: IT'S ALL THE WIRES! :)

Psst: IT’S ALL THE WIRES! :)

In the front of the room we’ve got two tall speakers flanking the tv and one subwoofer right next to it, and those wires are easily scooted under our baseboard and behind our tv stand. However, hiding the wires from our two back speakers and our two sound speakers was a bit trickier. And trickier still…we couldn’t hide them in the walls because the insulation was installed backwards and there wasn’t enough space.

The solution… these awesome, adhesive, paintable wire covers. (And no, I’m not being compensated to tell you that, we just seriously love these things).

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Is it completely invisible? Of course not. But it really does a solid job at blending, and anything is better then trailing  wires from the very back of a room to the very front of it.

The packs also come with corner elbows and T-shaped fittings so you can get around tricky areas, like giant beams that span the length of your ceiling:

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Overall, I absolutely think these are a lifesaver. It’s Matt’s room and it looks just how he wants it to… but let’s face it- left to his own devices they’re probably wouldn’t be a gallery wall of framed posters, concealed wires, and a plush  comfy rug.

You can definitely use these to hide lamp cords, tv wires (especially if you have a mounted tv!), speaker wires, etc.

So tell me, what are your wire hiding secrets?

Guest Post: How to DIY a Subwoofer Isolation Pad

DIY ISOLATION PAD

Today’s guest post is written by my better half, Matt! On Monday I shared what the movie room looks like, but he’s popping in today to share how we got it to sound awesome as well. Take it away Matt……

Seeing as Stephanie normally gets to do all of the writing (it is her blog after all) I thought that I should get a chance to contribute as well.

To make a long story short, we were in the process of revamping our basement with a shiny new paint job and a new surround sound configuration. On average, we probably watch about 5-7 movies a week so sound is key. We have a 7.1 (7 speakers and 1 subwoofer) surround sound system set up in our basement. You will have to forgive me but I need to geek out here and describe the system in brief detail before moving on—be patient.

            Everything is powered by a Denon AVR-791 receiver that I am in absolute love with. My center channel speaker (where most of the dialogue comes from) is a Klipsch KC-25 and my front left and right speakers are Klipsch KF-28 floor standing speakers. This is where most of the power comes from in the system so it was important for me to have nice clear sounding speakers. The KF-28s, in particular, are excellent sounding speakers. For my surround left and rights, I eventually went with Klipsch KS-14 2-way speakers. Your surrounds give off most of your “moving sound.” For example, if a car whizzes by in a movie you will hear it as it moves from left to right across your whole room. The term 2-way just means that there are 2 individual speakers in each main speaker. This gives the speakers more movement and reach in your room. My surround back left and rights are Polk Audio TSi 100 bookshelf speakers. I bought these many moons ago and while they don’t match the remainder of my setup they do sound excellent—and have a nice cherry wood finish to boot. Last but not least I have a Klipsch SW-450 for my subwoofer (the subwoofer puts out the entirety of the bass or low end in your surround sound; in other words, it is an extremely important part of your system). I had replaced a Polk Audio subwoofer with this new monster and I immediately had a problem: my room was vibrating. This leads us to my featured project, a DIY Subwoofer Isolation Pad.

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I did a great deal of research online about ways to fix vibration in a room from a subwoofer. What I kept coming to was something called an isolation pad. Essentially, this setup raises your subwoofer off the ground by about 2 to 3 inches. This coupled with heavy carpeting and soundproofing underneath was supposed to drastically cut down the vibration in a room. Basically, having a subwoofer on the ground can create many problems due to unwanted vibration and an overall “boominess.” We have the luxury of living in a house and not having to worry about neighbors so volume isn’t a problem. Apartment dwellers should especially take care here, as nothing is worse than having an awe inspiring setup but not being to use it thanks to sharing a space.

I found that you could purchase several different types ranging from $50-$100 online (mainly from Auralex), but this didn’t work for me. I had just spent a good deal of my hard earned money on upgrading my system, so I decided to build my own isolation pad.

The purpose of an isolation pad is in the name: it is meant to isolate the bass frequencies from the surfaces around the subwoofer. Raising it off the ground allows the bass to travel to the viewer and not to the walls, heating vents, and doors in your room.

isolation pad supply list

Total cost: under $40

1. I started by laying the MDF down on the ground and placed my 2X3s 6” in on both sides. I made pencil lines to mark where the 2X3s would sit on the MDF. I then applied the Liquid Nails to the 2X3s making a zigzag pattern as I went.

under step 1

2. Next, I lined up the 2X3s (with Stephanie’s help) and pressed them firmly against the MDF. I wiped away the excess adhesive and gave them about 15 minutes to dry. I then made pencil marks on the 2X3 bases every 2” or so. These would be my rough positions for my drywall screws. I then drilled in the screws to firmly hold and seal the 2X3s to the MDF. This part was loud and long but it’s important to secure these boards.

under step 2

3. Once the screws were in we flipped the pad over to its top. I sprayed the bottom of the carpet and the top of the MDF with the 3M adhesive (awesome stuff by the way!) and let them sit for 2 minutes before lining up the carpet and pressing it down firmly on the MDF. It will adhere quickly but be forewarned: the 3M spray has a strong smell. If it’s a nice day I would recommend spraying it outside—we didn’t! We let the carpet sit again for about 15 minutes.

under step 3

4. Once the carpet adhered on we busted out our trusty staple gun. I flipped over the pad and folded the excess carpet onto the bottom. Once it was pulled tight, I put in a liberal amount of staples to ensure it was secure and snug. I repeated the step on the opposite side. Next we had some excess on the front side of the pad so we folded that under and stapled it to the front (Stephanie used a black Sharpie to color in the staples—what a woman!).

under step 4

5. Once the carpet was secure I decided to use some of the Auralex soundproofing I bought to fill in the middle of the pad’s underside (in between the 2X3s). I had already bought some for the room so I cannot say how it would sound without it but you could always try it to start. This stuff can be expensive but I believe you can buy it in small quantities from Amazon. I cut a piece to size using a bread knife (you needed to use something with teeth, like this or an electric carving knife). We broke out the foul smelling 3M adhesive once more and sprayed both the bottom of the pad and the soundproofing foam. After 2 minutes I pressed the foam tightly and snuggly into the section. I flipped it back over and it was finished.

under step 5

I can vouch for the quality of an isolation pad. From the second I put my subwoofer back on it and went through a few of my favorite sounding blu-rays I heard the difference in the room. The bass was louder but clearer. It was no longer muddy sounding and I had done away with vibration in the room. Obviously, every room is different and you might need to do some extra work to make the room “tighter.” For about $35, however, you cannot go wrong with making your own isolation pad. For the home theater enthusiast or for the noise-restricted apartment dweller, an isolation pad is a must have!

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Movie Room Progress

I was going to call this post a room reveal, but then I started labeling one of the pictures with what we still have left to do and I thought “progress” would be a better word. This room has been a long time coming, it is the basement of our house and it’s Matt’s man cave. He spent a lot of time thinking about how he wanted it set up, what color he wanted it, and how he wanted everything to look. So note that this is not a beautiful professional blog room, it’s our realistic DIY budget room makeover and we think it’s freaking awesome.

To see what the room looked like 2 full years ago, when we first set it up, check here. And here’s what the room looked like while we were prepping to paint, the only thing missing is some of the DVD shelving but I really wanted you to get a sense of the nasty ox blood colored walls:

The walls were an unevenly painted crimson red, only half of the overhead lights worked, and the ceiling was dingy

The walls were an unevenly painted crimson red, only half of the overhead lights worked, and the ceiling was dingy

Dutch thought the wall color was fine… but what does he know. I thought it was incredibly stressful and harsh. It had to goooooo. We’ve been putting off painting it because we were afraid of how many coats of primer it would take to cover the red, then we discovered the awesomeness of paint + primer in one and realized if we chose a dark enough color we wouldn’t have to prime at all.

I got a lot of weird looks when I told people we were painting our basement a dark ashy blue… “but won’t it be all cave like down there?” YES. That is the point, this room is for movie watching so we wanted it dark, comfy, and inviting.

After 2 coats of City Nights by Clark+Kensington brand paint, the room was looking a million times better:

from stairsWe got it in an eggshell finish to minimize reflection and honestly, it makes me want to go back and paint my whole house in eggshell finish. It’s perfect. It’s also about a million times calmer and less aggressive.

My only complaint about the paint is it took FOREVER to dry. It was extremely thick… but to only have to do 2 coats instead of 5 or 6 was totally worth it.

Here’s a few more views of the room:

corner to left

The DVD shelves are from Best Buy, there’s 3 of them and the shelves can be adjusted to whatever height you’d like them. Each one can fit up to 500 movies. The tv stand is also from Best Buy, and the ottomans are from Walmart. The ottoman’s are both the same- you can take the top off and flip it to either be a tray or a soft top and inside is room for storage.

from woofer

When we moved in that back wall was just three built in cabinets, so we converted them to shelves so they could store more movies. Yes… more movies. :) The doors on the right wall are to the half bath and to the unfinished part of the basement.

Here’s a run down of what we’ve done to the room:

  • Painted the walls
  • Soundproofed
  • Bought a new rug (after our 3rd basement flood)
  • Concealed the wires from the surround sound
  • Replaced a broken light fixture (with an exact match we found at the Habitat Restore!)
  • Created built in shelves

And here’s a detailed picture of what we’ve got left to do:

left to window

Come back all week to learn more about soundproofing, speaker set up, and wire concealing!

The 1%

I was supposed to have a really fun reveal of our newly painted and updated movie room today. But I don’t… because of what we are now calling “the 1%”.

For the past year and a half Matt’s been mulling over how he wants his movie room (the finished basement room) to look: what color he wants the room, how he wants his speakers set up, what he wants to do about sound proofing. Finally he decided exactly what he wanted it to look like and we got to work.

Last Friday morning he painted the ceiling, last Friday night I put coat number 1 on the walls, Saturday morning we both put coat number two on the walls, Sunday he started on speaker wire concealing and put up sound absorption pads. Then Monday we came home from work and found a pipe gushing extremely hot water everywhere.

I vacuumed TWENTY GALLONS of water out of the room. The water had been pouring out of the hot water heater so not only was everything soaked, it was so hot that the cement paint on our floor had literally bubbled. We swore. We cried. We ate a lot of carbs. And that’s when we decided that 99% of the time owning a house is the most awesome thing in the world, but the 1% of the time things go wrong they go so wrong that you basically want to die.

Instead of the beautiful after I was going to share with you, here’s the current state of the room:

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At least we love the new paint color?

Every single problem we have/have had with our house has been water related:

  • The upstairs toilet runs for a solid 5 minutes every single time it’s flushed. We have no idea why or how to stop it
  • The downstairs toilet worked perfectly fine during the home inspection but was broken by the time we moved in
  • The kitchen sink was sitting on top of the pipes and not actually attached to it
  • The shower faucet was so old and coroded it literally came off in my hand when I turned it (after a FULL DAY of painting mind you, I needed to shower)
  • One of the pipes got backed up and water had nowhere to go so it overflowed out of the toilet (basement flood #1)
  • I tried to wash our old comforter in our washing machine and it didn’t fit so the water overflowed out of the washer (basement flood #2)
  • And now, apparently basement flood #3 was because we had 130 pounds of water pressure coming into our home with no valve to regulate it down to the 60 it should have been

Ugh. Hopefully we’ll have things up and running in time to show you next week!

So friends, commiserate with me please. What’s your 1%?

Attack of the Stink Stairs

Our basement stairs, if you couldn’t guess by the post title, stink. From what we understand the room, which is finished, originally had wall to wall carpet and then at some point the sump pump broke and overflowed so the carpet had to be ripped up. For some reason the stairs carpet was not removed. It always had a weird odor to it and with the high temperatures of the past week it really came out, and after our  foster dog threw up all over it within hours of arriving at our house (poor little guy) it really got pungent.

Long story short, the stink stairs have got to GO.  I was able to peek under a tiny corner section at the bottom to see that there were wood stairs (not cement, like the floor) so I knew that whatever the looked like I would be able to fix them.

They were carpeted all the way to the bottom, and after about two and a half hours of serious heavy labor in 94* weather they look as follows:

Try not to be too jealous.

To start I just gathered some tools I thought would be helpful and went to town. No googling or research here, just angry stink induced demolition. I am woman! Hear me roar!

 

 

The hammer helped to pull up the death sticks on the front and back of each stair (which I will share a picture of in a later post), the crowbar assisted in death stick removal as well. The utility knife cut the carpet and padding, and the screwdriver and pliers removed the staples. So many staples. Overall it wasn’t necessary a hard to figure out job, just a frustrating and energy consuming one. Staple removal is what made for such a slow going process, there were about fifteen in each step and many were tricky to get out.

Throughout the week I plan to remove the rest of the carpet, then over the weekend get them at least spackled and primed. I have leftover grey paint from the living room that will be the final color, as well as plans to stencil the front of each stair.

 

So tell me, any tips for carpet removal? Do you have a stink stair problem as well?

 

Basement Transformation

This post is very picture heavy, as it should be, because it shows the slow but steady transformation of our basement. The first half of these pictures were taken with my old digital camera (boooo Panasonic!) and the second half were taken with my new one (yay Canon!). I think the difference is quite clear.

Let’s dive in:

Here's a view of the old set up from the stairs straight to the wall- because I had a kitty corner tv stand the whole room was set up at an angle. It actually wasn't terrible, but we knew we could do better if things were lined up straight.

 

And here's a "before" shot taken from in front of the stairs faced out into the room- hi Dutch!- no, that orange blanket is never folded.

 

I cashed in my credit card reward points and we bought a dark wood tv stand from Best Buy. The wood matches the dark edge of the sectional and the casing of the surround sound speakers. Here's Matt setting it up.

 

Things are looks much better now- albeit a little shuffled behind the "viewing area." We've centered the tv and lined the sectional up with it. We distanced the sectional based on the size of our tv (42 inches) and the spacing of the surround sound. And by "we," I mean Matt- this is totally his thing.

 

Here is the view from the corner of the room behind the couch: On the lefthand wall we set up DVD shelving to display collections, collectables, and autographed movies. Those big wicker baskets you see will eventually be tucked into the movie shelving shown in the picture below and we plan to get an occasional table for behind the couch.

 

Finally, here's the view from the left side of the tv looking forward to the room entrance. Yes, we have over 4,000 movies.

 

Overall, because I was able to cash in credit card points all this was done for nothing. The only new piece of furniture was the tv stand.

Still to do for this room:

  • Paint the walls “medieval forest” green
  • Paint the movie built in’s the same light green as our sunroom
  • Install surround speakers into the wall
  • Install wall to wall carpeting (not for another year or so)

 

So it’s not looking great yet, but it’s much more functional and comfortable for sure. Also, with all the movies in their home we were able to get rid of about 15 boxes that had been hanging in the guest room.

Ups, Downs, Roundabouts

This past long weekend we had a lot on our agenda, and I am pleased that a good 75% of it actually happened- which is pretty solid for us because boy do we get distracted by sweatpants and DVDs.

Matt was able to get 4 of the 8 required pieces of drywall up in his media closets, and hopefully the remaining 4 will be up within the next 2 weeks. Once they’re up the closets will be sanded and primed and painted the same green as our sunroom. We also looked at swatches for the rest of the movie room walls and we decided on a green called “Medevil Forest,” maybe just because we like the name but it’s a nice dark hunter green that will go well down there. Because that room is used for watching tv, a dark wall color is important for glare and reflection.

While Matt was busy with drywall, I was ever so busy removing the wallpaper border from our upstairs landing. I have been dying to redo this landing for months, and it’s finally almost done. I was hoping to get it primed this weekend too but our plans were a bit derailed (explained later in this post) so it’ll have to wait until next weekend. The pictures of this hallway are horrendous, but that’s just a reflection of how it is in real life too. The walls are filthy, peeling, holey, and all around in need of some fresh paint and welcoming artwork. The landing will be painted in white truffle… which if you’ve been reading from the beginning, was the original color of the living room. White Truffle lasted in the living room less then 24 hours, but in this hallway it’ll last for years! I want something light and airy that won’t overpower the rooms that are branched off of it.

This is the view of the landing from our bedroom door. From left to right you see a bit of the stairway that leads up from the living room as well as the attic hatch door, our built in storage cabinet, the bathroom, and a towel closet. The built in storage cabinets will be getting new handles at some point and the bathroom will be lightened up but I haven't any clue as to what color- suggestions are welcome!

This is a view of the hallway from the bathroom. From left to right you see a smidge of the door frame that leads to the office, our bedroom, then the guest room. The guest room will most likely be white truffle as well, with a striped accent wall for some added fla-vah.

 

Once I had the wallpaper border removed, I spackled the walls in about a million places and the ceiling in two spots. Since I needed to wait for it to dry I couldn’t go ahead and prime it right away. But no fear- I found another artsy project to get started on!

 

I’ve been talking about a gallery wall for a while now and it’s finally in its early stages:

Currently I have 4 frames and a piece of tissue paper with a drawing on it that represents a picture sitting at Walgreens that I have neglected to go pick up.

 

The tissue paper picture will go in a white frame (yet to be purchased) and we have picked out 3 other prints we’d like to print up and add to this wall as well (frames for those have yet to be purchased too).  The frames that we do have I’ve taken my time gathering along the way, and I want to continue on in that fashion. The “HOME” piece came framed, the frame of Matt and Dutch I purchased at TJ Maxx a few years ago, the middle frame is actually a wooden Dollar Tree  purchased that I painted black, and the tacky ornate black frame was a Marshall’s find last week (clearance section, baby!).

Here’s another view close up:

All the frames will be either solid black or solid white, and all the art will be black and white as well. Eventually I'd like most of this wall to be totally covered.

Before hanging things on the wall I went through a highly scientific step by step process to ensure everything was where I wanted it:

1. I found the largest sheet of tissue paper I had and taped it to the wall.

2. I traced the frames on the tissue paper.

3. I forcibly ripped the back of the frames off so the stand wouldn’t cause it to protrude from the wall.

4. I tore holes out of the tissue paper where the frames were going to go.

5. I velcroed the frames to the wall because I’m awful at figuring out where the nail should go.

 

See- lots of measuring and calculations. And levels! Yeah, if anyone asks I also used a level….

 

And now on to our road bump….

We woke up Sunday morning to find we had no water... because a pipe in our basement froze... and then when we called in the plumber it split while he was defrosting it. Womp womp.

 

It turns out among many bright ideas the previous owners had, they decided it was smart to completely cover all the pipes in the basement and not properly insulate them. Man, I am learning a lot of what not to do in a house.

The plumber had to cut a hole in our wall to get to the pipes because they were covered with no vents or grates anywhere. Upon cutting it we realized why it froze so quickly and so easily: The insulation in the walls is butted up against the drywall that faces inward towards the room, not the cement wall that faces outside to the street. This means that cold air creeps in through the cement and gets held in the insulation that is right in front of it. You are supposed to put the insulation up against the outside facing wall so that it catches the cold air and does not let it permeate into the wall. So, we need to trim up t his whole a bit and cover it with a grate so that as we heat the downstairs room, some of the heat will flow into the walls and prevent freezing. At least it happened while we were home and we caught it right away so nothing burst inside the walls without us knowing.

 

And there’s our long weekend!

Mission Possible

Yesterday’s shelf construction went far more smoothly then I thought it would, mainly because the friend Matt had over to help really brought his A game. There’s still lots to do, but for now things are looking good and we’re excited.

The three basement closets all have shelves resting in them- the closets need drywall added to the bottom because prior to us moving in an old sump pump overflowed and ruined the walls about a foot upwards, and all three closets need to be painted once the drywall is up. This weekend we’ll be repairing the wall and hopefully on  Monday we can at least get things primed. We’ve decided to repaint the blood crimson walls to a deep  hunter green and to paint the inside of the shelves the same light green as our sunroom.

Matt was far to anxious to see what everything would look like so we put up all the movies anyway and will just carefully take them down in order when it’s time to forge ahead.

Here’s a picture diary of how it all went down:

Here's a look at our most challenging closet before things got started- there is a hatch door to the dark dank earth floor side of the basement and it can't be taken down or covered up so we are forced to work around it.

 

Matt took out all the wood from the closet that didn't have anything to do with the hatch door, so that we could build new shelf space around it.

 

He did the same for the middle closet, and the left hand side closet. In this picture, you can see the damage to the lower wall. We will cut it even and patch it up on Saturday.

 

Once all the closets had miscellaneous debris and wood cleared, the men folk headed outside with their power tools to cut the shelves down. They swear they measured things first, but I wasn't there so I'm still skeptical.

 

The shelves for each closet were lined up next to them because they weren't all the same cut- there is a pipe running down the left hand closet so those shelves needed an extra wedge taken out, and the weird hatch forced us to make 2 half shelves for that closet.

 

While Matt's dutiful friend went ahead with installing the shelves, Matt started to sort through his massive 4,000+ collection.

 

With all those unsteady stacks of movies, we decided it would be best to give Dutch a bone to occupy himself with.

 

You can see here we decided not to bracket the shelves but rather to put smaller wood rests into the side walls instead- the movies aren't creating enough weight that there needs to be a middle brace. Once everything is painted and ready to go we will screw the shelves into the wedges, but for now they're just resting on top.

There are 6 shelves in each of the first two closets, and then the third closet has 2 full shelves and 2 half shelves. Things got filled in quickly!

 

Luigi jumped on the rare opportunity to join us downstairs- because the couch has leather sides there's normally no cats allowed but we were far too busy going up and down the stairs with boxes and wood planks to worry about it.

 

Here's where we left off for the night! The shelves will fit all of our movies, but there are still two or three boxes with collections and limited editions that will be placed in other areas around the room. The big wicker baskets are my contribution to the room- as awesome as it is to have a finished basement we are strapped for storage so one of these holds extra blankets and the other hold dog and cat supplies.