A Labour of Love
It took a year and a half of countless hours of restoration, repairs, refinishing, pulling down cracked plaster walls, replastering, painting and decorating, but the Lilac Inn is coming to life and is ready for guests. There are still a couple of rooms that need to be done, but the bulk of the work is complete and I'm excited about the first full season getting under way.
"Before" pictures of the Cove room. Plaster repairs, painting and refinishing the floor as well as the two wrought iron beds were the priorities.
"After" pictures of the Cove room ... bright, airy and cozy.
Close up view of the two handmade crocheted coverlets that were found in one of the bedrooms. They were badly torn and yellowed with age. Hundreds of hours went into the painstaking detail work that was needed to restore these lovely covers and pillow shams.
Repairs to a leaky roof and ceiling, followed by the installation of a new ceiling and light fixture, some freshly painted walls and refinished furniture and the Bay room was ready to go.
The sunroom was by far the biggest challenge. Removal of the decades-old dusty and mildewy carpet and subfloor along with stripping the multiple layers of paint took weeks, but I knew it would make a great breakfast room for the inn's guests. Some drywall under the windows, caulking every seam and joint in the room, followed by fresh paint, a new wood floor, an antique light fixture, some lace curtains (a big thank you to my sister Judy for sewing the curtains for me) and the room was transformed.
What a great start to the day. Enjoying a freshly made breakfast, with a view of the ocean, just metres away.
The upstairs hall floor was the most labour intensive of all. Prying up the particleboard subfloor took weeks. Then a thorough sanding, staining and varnishing and the floor is beautifully refinished to its original glory.
There are 3 quiet areas in the hallway to read a book, set up your laptop or just grab the binoculars provided and scan the ocean for wildlife.
The guest common room took the least amount of time and effort. Removal of the faded and tearing curtains and replacement of some outdated furnishings and the room is much airier and perfect for some quiet reading on the window seat, while gazing out over the ocean or catching up with your favourite sports team on tv.
2017 was the year of the new entranceway, which involved knocking out a wall and installing a door, sidelights and transom. The house badly needed a doorway on the north side. It not only makes a nicer entranceway for our guests, it's much handier to water the flowers in the planters.
And of course, the ultimate in much-needed and the most costly of repairs, 2017 was the year we couldn't put it off any longer. We had to have the top of the roof replaced to stop all the leaks that were getting too big to fix with just a small patch. The plan for the future is to replace the black shingles surrounding the outside of the second floor, with beautiful, bright and clean, whitewashed wood siding. Much to still be done, with the outside of the house, to return it to its former 'manor' days.
2018 - the renovations continue
Nothing gives you a great workout in the morning, like sanding and prepping a bedroom floor for a fresh coat of paint. The paint on the floor had to be at least 20 years old and was knicked and gouged. The baseboard was also in desperate need of a bright new coat of white paint.
A light beige paint topped with a lovely 'faded' beige/blue area rug and the floor in the Bay Room is ready for guests.