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I ‘Column’ Like I See ‘Em

6-10-13 022

I couldn’t wait to show you the ‘AFTER’!

*Sigh* As much as I LOVE DIY projects, I do believe the NC summer is already starting to get to me. That, and the fact that we can’t seem to ever have an easy go of any project we attempt. The hubs always jokes that we seem to be cursed in this arena. No matter what we take on- it’s ALWAYS 5x harder! Like the fact that our house was apparently built by a bunch of crackpots who had not a care for state rules and regs (and probably paid off inspectors), so every stud in our house is not 16″ on center. Some are 14″. Some are 12″. You get the picture. We’ve even found some load bearing walls barely capable of bearing a bag of groceries, much less our roof- so we’ve had to reinforce. It’s just been a never ending process! But, like mama always said (gosh, did I just channel Forrest Gump?), ‘When you own a home, you are married to it’. She couldn’t have been more correct. However, our home is more like our fickle mistress because we are, of course, married to each other! :D

But I digress. We’ve spent the first two years working on the inside of our house and I’ll post all that DIY goodness later, because it’s still not actually done (that whole 85% girl thing, you know?). But here recently, we’ve gotten the wild hair to begin working on the outside of our home because it is just UG-LY! (Trigger cheer: U-G-L-Y- you ain’t got no alibi- you ugly!) Everything about it is awful- the bricks are all tones of brown on brown, the trim is painted this nasty shade of rotten butter yellow (yuck!), the shutters and front doors are baby poop brown, the 3-tab roof (original to the 1980 house) is brown as well and in terrible condition- it is just GROSS!

 

The house was obviously owned by a bunch of manic depressive when we bought it. It needed HELP!!

See the ugly column?

Another shot of the awful columns!

One of the things we always hated was the columns on the house. They were so small and spindly (and also painted rotten butter yellow) and were meant to be decorative, although they were anything but. I kept pushing my hubby to replace them with 4×4 posts (because even though I’m an 85% girl, he’s totally a 100% guy) but he was worried about how we’d get them out of the concrete and keep from losing the porch roof in the changeover (all totally valid concerns!)

 

So, we left it alone until one day inspiration came to us in the form of an A&E show, ‘Fix this Yard‘. In it, Amy and Alan have a homeowner with an ugly column (just one mind you, not four like us) and they used a column wrap to cover it up. Essentially, just a pvc piece that snaps around the ugly column and makes it look gorgeous! We were hooked!! Computer on… let’s GOOGLE!! I searched the internet far and wide and found all sorts of them, but prices were…. well… pricey. So, onto the back burner it went until I got a wild hair to call some of the builder supply places in town and discovered one who happened to have a few left by Arndt & Herman, clearanced out, which worked perfectly with our budget (which is basically $0)!

Now, here’s where our problems started. Our columns were 3.5″ per side- the new columns were 6″. We had to come up with something to fill up the space. Which meant 2×3 and 1×3 and lots of chopping and screwing and hammering and nailing and cursing (on my husband’s behalf). Please note, these columns DO NOT go together as easily as they claim- but when you finally figure out the ancient Chinese secret- they look AWESOME!! By the fourth column, we were pros.

Silly hubby!

The ‘this isn’t as easy as it looks’ face
Filler wood

Now, here’s where our problems started. Our columns were 3.5″ per side- the new columns were 6″. We had to come up with something to fill up the space. Which meant 2×3 and 1×3 and lots of chopping and screwing and hammering and nailing and cursing (on my husband’s behalf). Please note, these columns DO NOT go together as easily as they claim- but when you finally figure out the ancient Chinese secret- they look AWESOME!! By the fourth column, we were pros.

The ‘we finally figured it out’ face

We knew the formula, had it down to a science, and got it done in record time. The best part is now I don’t ever have to worry about rot or painting the columns again- I can just wipe them down with a cloth or spray gently with our pressure washer. Easy peasy! And now I have some butch columns on which to train beautiful climbing flowers to grow- I do so love climbing flowers!

So PRETTY!

So, although it didn’t work out as easily as it seemed on tv (does it ever?) it sure was a heck of a lot easier than building supports to hold up the roof while we took out the columns to replace them. And it was a LOT less nerve wracking! So, I say it was definitely a 2 thumbs up DIY in my book! Thanks, ‘Fix this Yard‘ for the stellar idea- much obliged!

Until next time… don’t stop the DIY!

I’m Linking Up With These Great Parties!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


2 comments to I ‘Column’ Like I See ‘Em

  • Christine Graves  says:

    (Trigger cheer) You rocked it! You rocked it! Now girl you reallllly rocked it! I laughed out loud at your post. You keep it real….Good for you!! and thanks so much for sharing this, I am glad I dropped by. The new posts look MUCH BETTER…. Good job!!!!

    • Jenn  says:

      Awwww! Thanks Christine! I laughed out loud at your comment! I loved your return cheer! I’m really glad you dropped by as well and that someone out there in the big bad world thinks the new posts look as good as we think they do- I was beginning to wonder. Lol! Hope to see you around here again soon!

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