If you’ve been following this blog, you know that I’ve been helping my friend restore an old Victorian house so that she can transform it into a bed and breakfast. For years, the house was a community center, and after that it belonged to a lawyer who only used two rooms on the ground floor. The rest of the rooms on the ground floor and the upper floors were mothballed.
While we were checking out the second floor and making plans for changes, we encountered a strange, expansive room with high ceilings and cheap linoleum tiles glued to the floor. We realized that the room had been a rec room back when the house was a community center, but we had to do a little digging to determine what the room had been when the house was first built. It turns out that it was a ballroom!
After some discussion, we decided to restore it to its original state. My friend will be able to rent it out for events and she’s very excited about it. She told me she couldn’t wait to decorate it for weddings and high school proms and other fancy events. I told her I couldn’t wait to pry up those tiles!
I got in there with my hammer and chisel and the tiles came up easily. I was thrilled when I saw the original cedar planks underneath. It took quite a bit of time and elbow grease (I think I lost ten pounds!) to sand off all the glue but when we saw the floor all smooth and sanded and ready to be refinished, we knew it was worth the effort. As I write this, the room is closed up so that the new lacquer can dry.
Of course, the work didn’t stop with the floor. We had to remove the ugly florescent lights and pull down the drop ceiling. What was above the drop ceiling, you ask? An amazing night-sky mural, that’s what. I hate it when people buy old houses and show them no respect when they repurpose them.
Anyway, we found an old picture of the house and are planning a trip to the salvage stores to find chandeliers (that’s right, this room has two!) that are similar to the ones that were in the original room. We’re also going to restore the old coat room, which means we need to replace some of the old coat hooks that went missing. We also need new wallpaper but we’ve already decided on the Centennial roomset from Bradbury & Bradbury. The last thing we’ll get will be drapes.
Soon, it will be as if the ballroom’s transformation into a linoleum-tiled room full of Foosball tables never happened!