I’m so excited to finally be able to share our newly sanded and oiled floors!
Now that the oil has hardened and our furniture is back where it belongs and no longer squashed in the hallway, bedroom and bathroom we can finally share our before & after pictures!
But as a reminder, this is what the floor in our home used to look like.
They’d been totally neglected. There were splashes of paint and water stains everywhere, random nails stuck up that would rip our socks to shreds and I’ve lost count of the number of splinters I’ve had to pick out of my feet!
The floorboards looked even worse. They’d all been painted in something called Ochsenblut (which translates to Oxblood!) which is a kind of paint that’s very typical in old Berlin properties but is an absolute nightmare to get rid of because it’s really thick and gooey and instantly clogs up your sandpaper.
It took just over a week for me to sand and oil the floors and I’ll admit that I will scream if I ever have to sand another floor again. It’s such hard work!
Having sanded the floors in our last home I knew what we were letting ourselves in for but that really didn’t make it any better. Worst of all, we’re still not done as we’ve only sanded just over half of the apartment! Argh!
As much as I like to moan about just how much work it is, it’s also been totally worth it! And I don’t just mean financially.
I definitely feel more at home now that the floor is done. It’s possibly a bit weird but I don’t mean because the apartment is looking so much better (although that’s, of course, a bonus) it’s because I feel like I have more of a connection to our new home. I know every floorboard and creaky bit of parquet, every knot, every random nail and every imperfect spot.
I’d be lying if it I didn’t think it has something to do with being proud of our achievements, too!
In our last house, we varnished all of our sanded floorboards but this time around we’ve decided to oil them. Varnished floors can so often look plastic-y. I really don’t like the shiny, artificial look which is why we were super picky about the type of varnish we used in our last home.
We were really pleased with how the floors in our last home looked but oil is still a more natural finish. That’s one of the reasons we think that it’s the better choice for our parquet floor in the dining room and living room.
Applying the oil was really easy but it was slightly more work than applying varnish as we had to polish/rub it in with a machine for a super durable and even finish. I guess only time will tell how well it really holds up!
Given that we’re living in the apartment and that all of our things are here we had to plan the logistics of our floor sanding project carefully. So far, we’ve sanded the front half of the apartment and we’ve booked the machines to sand the second half at the beginning of September.
As you can probably imagine, it’s not exactly something I’m looking forward to but I’m equally excited about having lovely clean and splinter free floors everywhere!
As much as I hate to admit it, there’s no getting around the fact that the floors aren’t perfect. They’re well over 100 years old so even with my best sanding efforts it’s no real surprise that there’s the odd imperfection.
One of my biggest concerns had been about sanding the parquet and my worries were partly justified. It was definitely much more difficult than sanding floorboards (which is ridiculously easy).
We’ll share a post specifically about sanding parquet flooring as well as a full cost breakdown when we’ve actually finished sanding all of our floors. At the moment it’s just difficult to compare a half finished project to our floor sanding quotes.
If you do already have any questions about sanding floors do let me know and I’ll be sure to include them in our next post. Just drop us an email at [email protected] and tell us what you’d like to know!
Have you ever sanded your floorboards (or parquet) or are you planning to? If you have, did you also think it was ridiculously hard work? Do you have a favourite home improvement you’ve done to your home? Or a project you’ve sworn to never do again?