Just Merveilleux

Life at № 42

Work and then more work. Months of work ahead.

I did ask for it. Now I’ve got a total of six serious reforms on my hands. Six kitchens to be redone, six bathrooms- goodness knows how many square metres of floors to be changed.

We took possession of the keys to our new building this morning. Two of the tenants are staying in place, so I only walked through and took pictures of empty apartments.

It’s exciting but also daunting. The current kitchens and bathrooms are appalling. I want a completely different feel. I’ve spent the past couple of weeks researching industrial materials. They’re not just inexpensive, they’re also very resistant. That’s the feel I want, industrial.  That’ll allow tenants to use the flats as a blank canvas for their own things whether they prefer modern or classical.

At the moment these are the floors I’m leaning towards for the whole place:

floorsimm

The most challenging aspect: the two studios. The bigger apartments are quite easy and classical in distribution- but the studios will require some serious thinking so they’re comfortable and attractive. At the moment they’re neither. I’m investigating the possibility of mezzanine beds and all that, possibly a solution.

I’m going to spend the weekend walking from flat to flat, room to room. I want a real sense of what it is to live in each apartment. That’s the only way to make sure the project is up to the standard I’m hoping to achieve.

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26 comments on “Work and then more work. Months of work ahead.

  1. acflory
    September 18, 2015

    Wow! The living areas are light and airy but those kitchens…:( I’m not sure if that pic of a floor is actually metal but it looks metallic and ‘treads’ or no, I personally wouldn’t want to walk on that when it’s wet, or dirty and greasy.

    But old lady fears aside, guess what? I actually found this post in my WordPress.com reader! Literally the first time I can remember seeing one here. I don’t know how my Reader is populated, but it doesn’t appear to have much to do with the blogs I follow.

    Anyway, congratulations. Exciting times. 😀

    Liked by 1 person

    • Mr. Merveilleux
      September 18, 2015

      The floor is rubber-like. Technically an insulated form of pvc (aka 21st century lino). It looks just like metal, but is normally used for factories and garages.

      Like

      • clubschadenfreude
        September 18, 2015

        that stuff is awesome. I’ve always liked the look of metal tread and now it’s in lino?

        Ah, well. If the American idiocracy elects Trump, husband and I will need a place to live….

        Liked by 1 person

      • Mr. Merveilleux
        September 18, 2015

        There are approximately 30% of absolute idiots in every country. In France they support Le Pen, In the US they support Trump. Fortunately they have no chance in major elections 🙂

        Like

      • clubschadenfreude
        September 19, 2015

        I really hope that is true in this time period.

        I don’t know if you’d be interested but there’s a great book about people who act like this by a Canadian professor, Bob Altemeyer, called “The Authoritarians”. http://home.cc.umanitoba.ca/~altemey/ perhaps for a day when you aren’t up to your ears in renovations 🙂

        Like

      • acflory
        September 18, 2015

        Aaaah! Got it. Safe then. I have to say it really is an amazing looking material!

        Like

    • Mr. Merveilleux
      September 18, 2015

      P.S. I’m also NOT a fan of the 1970’s kitchens…

      Like

  2. john zande
    September 19, 2015

    I can smell a book in the works: The Good Landlord

    Like

  3. davidprosser
    September 19, 2015

    Your future tenants are going to have a lot to be grateful for with the care you’re taking.
    Hugs

    Like

  4. Helen Devries
    September 19, 2015

    When we were ‘doing up’ houses we used to just go there for a morning, an afternoon, over a period of time to catch the feel of the place before we touched anything.

    Like

  5. I’m sure you are very familiar with this website, but just in case you haven’t seen it in a while it might give you some ideas for your studios.
    http://weburbanist.com/2014/01/20/disappearing-bed-for-tiny-flat-rolls-under-kitchen-floor/

    Like

  6. I also like this Apartment Therapy Website. Since you are remodeling apartments this might be a good source of ideas for you. I was looking for a specific story I remember reading, about a very very tiny apartment in Paris that a woman remolded. So on this link I put in Paris Apartment and actually although I did not find the specific story I was looking for there are a tone of great apartment ideas here.
    http://www.apartmenttherapy.com/search?q=Paris+apartment

    I have debated & debated if I should say what I was thinking about your selection on flooring. For myself I wouldn’t choose it. It looks like is going to be awfully hard to sweep and mop.

    Like

  7. Gosh I found it! It wasn’t a tiny Paris Apartment it is a tiny Stockholm apartment. I have never forgotten this design, and I haven’t looked at this in years, but I never forgot it. If you think about it, your studios are really tiny or micro apartments and there is a lot of design ideas for them. When you mentioned you might do a loft, this is the apartment I think does the loft best. As for me I am not a fan of a high loft with steep stairs, simply because often times I have to get up in the night (or I am pressing in the morning) to use the bathroom.

    This design does use a loft but it is only a few steps up, and it cleverly uses the space underneath for clothes storage, and the French tend to have a lot of clothes. I like the few steps up style simply for getting into it and out of it quicker & easier, especially when I need to use the bathroom. I also really like the glass panel between the kitchen & the loft, you don’t feel boxed into a small loft. So many times in micro apartments there is insufficient cabinets and counter top space, and I think this design is pretty generous with counter top space and kitchen drawers and cabinets. I’ll pass this along, perhaps you might find something to use as you reflect. (I finally found it using Google image search, I knew I would recognize it as soon as I saw it)
    http://www.dezeen.com/2014/06/04/karin-matz-stockholm-apartment-renovation/

    Like

    • Mr. Merveilleux
      September 20, 2015

      Hi!
      How have you been? Have you noticed the Askthebigot website didn’t just close temporarily, it seems it’s staying closed… Interesting turn of events 😉

      Like

      • Oh wow, the Bigot took her blog private, that is interesting.
        I think many of them have run out of steam. I mean we won, we won France, the UK, we won Ireland HUGE and of course the United States Supreme Court, and we are fighting like Hell in Australia.

        I do think their fight is focused on anti surrogacy, however that is not strictly an anti gay fight since straight couples use fertility assistance also. I think they are busy behind the scenes, but not with the same sense of urgency or passion as before. They lost every big fight, how much fight can they have left in them? They will focus on abortion now, and if they get invited where somebody is paying the fare, they will go, but it can never be with the same sense of urgency as before.

        Liked by 1 person

      • roughseasinthemed
        September 27, 2015

        You can tell I’m in catch-up mode, but wow. That is interesting. In a good way 🙂 buen trabajo, caballero.

        Like

  8. Charmaine Martin
    September 21, 2015

    I am notoriously unable to visualize work in progress, so nobody ever asks me design questions. But, I don’t think I’d like to live on a factory floor. Where would I put my ornate 1905 piano? I think if you want a truly blank canvas for modern or classical furnishings, you can use the same type of industrial material, but think “store” instead of “factory”. A faux tile instead of a faux steel grid. Seems more homey.
    (Of course, when it’s all done, I’ll say “Wow! I was wrong! This really works!” – that’s what always happens, and why I defer to the artist.)

    Like

    • Mr. Merveilleux
      September 21, 2015

      We’ve had a superb surprise! Beneath the ugly linoleum are good wood floorboards!!! Goodness knows why people do the things they do. I suppose linoleum was deemed very practical circa 1960…

      Like

      • Charmaine Martin
        September 22, 2015

        P’raps they were afraid tenants would ruin wood with improper cleaning. It’s easier now, and anyone would be delighted to have hardwood floors. So many of the surprises in remodeling are unpleasant ones (we found termites) – so glad you got a good one.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Wonderful, great!
        I hope for your sake not a lot of glue. Scraping floors is not a whole lot of fun.
        Even a blind squirrel finds a nut every now and then ;-‘)

        Like

  9. The bathroom doesn’t look bad in the pic. Have you ever painted tile? They make a really good paint nowadays for painting over tile. My sister in law painted her tile counter tops and backslash and you would never know it, it really came out awesome. If you have never seen tile that has been painted with a high quality tile paint, you even paint over the grout, I think you would be surprised. The white came out awesome, and it held up, her counter tops are really great painted, and it has been a few years now. If you paint the walls a contrasting color and paint the existing tile white you will get color into the space. As for myself I usually approach renovations, especially in rental units as I do one major thing now, then the next time, or the time after that when a new tenant comes in I do another major project. If you choose to just do the kitchens for now and come back to the bathrooms for a bigger job later I can highly recommend painting the tile as a low cost refresh. If you were going to rip out the tile in the bathroom anyway, buy a small can and try it out. Probably a paint spray gun would give you an excellent finish but a small foam roller would give a good result also. I like the Wagner Paint guns.

    Also upper kitchen or bathroom cabinets where the door lifts UP make an impact. You can get a stock upper cabinet and just turn it on it’s side and use these hinges.
    (blum is the best)
    http://www.hardwaresource.com/hinges/cabinet-hinges/vertical-door-stays/

    Oops, I think I may have watched to much HGTV, LOLZ!

    Like

  10. Epoxy the floor, you can pick any manor of epoxy finishes. AND you can epoxy a wood floor. I would think you do not want to do any more ripping up of vinyl flooring and then scraping off glue. Here is what you can do, since your floors are solid, (has to be concrete under everything), you can glue a thin layer of plywood over what you have now, and then epoxy on top of the plywood. I didn’t know that you can epoxy plywood but you can. The industrial adhesives nowadays are really good, I would not be worried if the glue will stick the wood to the floor, it will. Epoxy can give you that industrial look, there is like a million different epoxy finishes you can choose. There is even one metallic look epoxy.

    http://www.theflooringlady.com/epoxy_flooring_000688.html

    Like

  11. theoccasionalman
    September 22, 2015

    You may be facing a lot of work, but isn’t this close to a perfect situation for you? The joy of being active in making a home beautiful, but without the frustration of having to live in the middle of a construction site. 😉

    Like

    • Mr. Merveilleux
      September 23, 2015

      Of course, you’re correct. But you’ve known me for years now so that’s to be expected.

      Like

  12. roughseasinthemed
    September 27, 2015

    That chequerplate style flooring is vile. Seriously. If it’s real Lino, I’d leave it. I think Lino is classy. But so are timber floors. Sanding and staining is a pain though.

    Like

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This entry was posted on September 18, 2015 by in Mazamet and tagged , , , , .
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