I know I talked about it and even posted some snippets of the floor. I have gotten many questions about the floor I wanted to see how the floor has held up before posting about it. I finished the floor back in August (the 16th to be exact) which means it has been a little over a month since our forced home renovations.
Many of you know I am cheap and the thought of spending $2000 on hardwood floors seemed a tad ridiculous. Don’t get me wrong I love hardwood they are beautiful but in my world completely impractical. I have a dog, a Princess and a Booga, my concern lies mostly with the dog and a Booga who chases her throughout the house. I envisioned the floors laid and Booga pulling out a ball point pen and scribbling on my floor or Reeva scratching the floor because Booga was chasing her. Better yet Jeff and I moving furniture and the felt foot comes off and we tore up the floor. Those nightmarish scenarios ran through my head repeatedly. The price tag also was a complete turn off and I really didn’t want laminate because we already had a mold problem. A while back I pinned a paper bag floor and told Jeff as a joke hey we should do this. I revisited the Paper Bag Floor when we ripped up 364 square feet of carpet. I figured if nothing else it would be a stop gap until we could do something in the spring.
Our house as I have mentioned in the past was not built the best (Booga could have done a better job) the floor really showed me how poorly this house was constructed. There were several spots were the gap was at least 1/2″ on the stud. Also we have no insulation under the house and the floor is not insulated either, something we were unaware of until the floor happened. We knew there was no insulation under the house but we assumed they did a barrier before the carpet, not the case. Our carpet was laid right over the OFB Board leading to stains in the OFB board from pet accidents (not ours but the previous owners). We decided to add a little bit of insulation to our floor we laid felt paper and then covered the whole floor with 1/4″ moisture resistance luan (remember the mold thing, yep that is why we went this route).
Things I learned with this project:
- Buy extra whether it an extra gallon of white glue, roll of paper or another gallon of polyurethane.
- If you can take all the furniture out of the room – DO IT! We did not have that luxury so we did it in sections it will take less time if you can remove everything.
- Invest in knee pads or a garden pad I spent 4 days on my knees and had bruises for a couple weeks.
- You can fix scratches with more paper, glue and polyurethane.
- Don’t fill your cracks if they are small – I did not fill the cracks on half the floor and did it on the other I am much happier with the non-filled side than the filled side (yes I did sand everything too). Remember a floor swells and shrinks with the change in weather so somedays my “cracks” are far more noticeable.
- Don’t skimp on the polyurethane, I only did 8 coats on one half of the floor – it hasn’t held up as well as the 12. Besides running out of polyurethane I have some patches I have to do because I dropped a paint brush on the floor. I will get to it eventually but it is holding up pretty good considering there was only 8 coats.
I used this post from Lovely Crafty Home and her glue mixture (3 part water to 1 part Elmer’s White Glue). I used the Brown Builders Paper from Home Depot as the majority of my base and nine paper bags from Pulbix to finish it. I did NOT use the stain it was already the color I wanted so I put the polyurethane right over the top – I used Rust-oleum Clear Polyurethane.
I love this floor my house feels cleaner and is far easier to clean than it ever was with the carpet. My neighbor also gave me a steam mop which works great on the floor. If you are looking for a cheaper alternative to hardwood floors this is a great option.
How has it held up?
Considering I have a Booga and a dog surprisingly well. I honestly thought it wouldn’t last a week, I have been proven wrong. I do have a couple places that need a patch but they aren’t bad and really don’t bother me. If it does get bad I can patch it with some paper bag, glue and then cover it with polyurethane.
Total Cost (includes felt paper, luan, paper, glue, polyurethane, lamb head applicator): $400 sure beats $2000
Time: Depends mine was over 4 days (that was after almost 2 weeks of waiting for insurance)