Hallway Update

The floor in our hallway has gone through a variety of “looks” over the past few years. Here’s a photo of one of the grodiest…

We’ve been tiptoeing across that sucker for the past year, because when you’re renovating on a shoestring budget, sometimes you gotta go with the grody for a while.

And speaking of grody…I’ll never forget these funky phases our floor went through either…

There was the stretched out/dog peed-on carpet phase back in ’07, and the beat up, 70’s style linoleum (we found under the carpet) phase back in 2010. Can I get a yuck, yuck?

Fortunately, a friend of ours helped install 93 square feet of unfinished red oak flooring in there last week though (I stained and sealed it just like I did in the kitchen), so all we have left to do is install shoe molding around the edges and it’ll finally be done- yahoo!

Next up, I’m going to re-paint the guest bathroom door (note: don’t use Polycrylic on top of Sherwin William’s “Mourning Dove” (8085) paint- it will turn yellow in a few years.), and then I can finally start setting up my office…

Everything is just kind of thrown in there right now, but I’d eventually like to put together a 9’x9′ area rug out of Flor carpet tiles, get some curtains, switch out some of the picture frames on the wall for a bulletin board, a calendar, etc., build a base for my desk (so I can hide all my cords), and get some doors for my Billy bookcases (so I can hide all my stuff!).

Oh, and I might have to get one of those window ledge thing-a-ma-bobs for Mr. Kit-Cat. He seems to like lounging there while I work, and I gotta say, I really like having him there, too.


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  1. says

    Hi Layla– I hear ya! We have been living with grody in our dining room for better of a decade. Not kidding. We will be putting down linoleum due to budget and how out of whack our floor is. I mean it is 131 yrs old. Why we have waited so long is the same flooring option will cover the kitchen, laundry and first floor bath. I so want it finished!!

    I LOVE what you have done! Impeccable as ever. Great job!

  2. says

    I officially have floor jealousy right now — they look amazing! I have 15 year old wood laminate in my house that I’m dying to swap out for the real thing, but a kitchen reno is on the list (at some point), blah, blah, blah… I’ll just look at yours for a while! :)

  3. kelly in georgia says

    That looks bee-u-ti-ful!! Our office floor has gross carpet that MUST be replaced with something. I see your floor runs into a room with the same flooring. Does your hallway floor run into another floor that is a different wood by any chance? Our study is next to a hall with pine flooring. I don’t think I can match 17 year old real wood, and I don’t want carpet (but may have to do that). Just wondered if you have encountered nonmatching wood floors next to each other?

  4. says

    Oh my gosh, I love EVERYTHING about this!!! Question- I have a grey corduroy couch and loveseat and am shopping for a new wall color but am completely lost. The current color is yellow (painted several years before we got the furniture) and the yellow and grey fad is bumming me out… I hate trends! Any advice? I would be ever so grateful!!! :D

  5. says

    Hi Layla and Kevin, I love your entire house and this is no exception :) I LOVE all of the white and the country touches. You guys have awesome style. Thanks for sharing!

  6. Laura says

    We have been living with Grody Bathroom for a loooonnnngggg time. I laugh when I see real estate shows and people say, “I cannot live with that tile/sink/floor/paint color. That whole room would have to be redone!” It’s amazing what you can live with. Somedays happily, others not-so-much, but our ugly bathroom is not our whole life (thankfully!), so Grody Bathroom will abide with us for a bit longer! So glad you were able to kick his relative, Grody Floor, out of your house!

  7. Shauna says

    I read recently that Varathane is a trusted brand of topcoat/sealer that will not yellow the paint underneath it. In other news, while my husband and I were driving from Louisiana to Georgia last week, I looked up Pratville Pickers to see if we could swing by! Unfortunately it was out of our way this time, but next time we’ll definitely give some love to your local shop….you always find the best stuff there!

  8. Beth says

    Cracking up. Haven’t heard ‘grody’ in years. Love it. My kids look at me sideways when I say it!! Always love following your spruce-ups! Keep ‘em coming!

  9. says

    Hey Layla! I’m in Montgomery and am looking for someone to refinish and/or match and install some new hardwoods so who did you use or who do you suggest in down. Ps we are also on a shoe string budget! ;)

  10. Jordan says

    Uh oh! When you say not to use the polycrylic on top of mourning dove because it turns yellow, are you referring to the same stuff you used on top of the kitchen cabinets?

    We are about to tackle the same color combination as your kitchen, using the clear spray on coat that you used in your kitchen. But if it’s going to turn yellow, we need to rethink that project.

  11. says

    Oh, it looks wonderful. I completely understand the shoestring budge… that’s the only way we operate around here. But if you had tons of money to fix it up at once it would spoil the fun of renovating! I am looking forward to seeing what you do with your office.

  12. Reagan says

    Thank you for using the term “grodiest” and “grody”. They aren’t used enough in the English language.

  13. Heather says

    Looking fabulous! Don’t you love when it all starts to come together?! It’s the best feeling. Tell the truth, how many times do you walk to the hallway each day just to look at it and get a bit giddy? Or is that just something I do when I’m remodeling?!

  14. says

    It all looks so beautiful, it seems like you don’t have much left to do to the house, but maybe there are things you don’t show that need Reno. Either way the floors look great, and I love the view from the hallway into the guest room, it’s usually only th close up that I see. Have a fabulous day!

  15. Jessica says

    Layla, is it my imagination, or are there red squares on the stained plank wall in your nook area? If so, what is their purpose? I have been reading your blog for over a year now, and I love seeing your cottage transformed!

  16. Deidra says

    As a birthday gift for my mother-in-law last year, I revamped her guest/hall bathroom. I used Polycrylic over the cabinets (which I painted Valspar Natural Linen -I think! [creamy off-white]) as a sealer. It turned yellow within weeks. :(
    Now, I owe her another cabinet redo.

  17. says

    Lovely as always! I’m really in love with the nook. Gosh, I’m beginning to feel a little lazy as I gaze at the empty hole in my entryway!

  18. says

    Looks great Layla! I always love how the planks on your wall show in photo’s. The grooves always look so cool….if that makes any sense at all! Looking good girl and yes, the kitty needs a place to hang out in your new office :)

  19. says

    Layla, that looks absolutely amazing!! I really like the color of your floors–the more natural color. It has just enough color to give the area a warm and homey look without being too dark and overpowering. Beautifully done! I’ll be interested in seeing how you do the shoe moulding. Most professional installers stain the shoe moulding if it’s going up against hardwood floors, but I’ve always preferred to paint mine the trim color, even if it’s against hardwood floors. I’m curious which way you prefer! I know…it’s a little detail, but I’m still curious. :)

  20. Lauri McIntosh says

    Hi Layla,
    I saw you in the magazine spread today at Barnes and Noble! It was great. Love the new floors.

  21. says

    I just found your blog, from “The Homies,” and I love it! Gorgeous photos, gorgeous makeovers and I love this hallway.

    I’m from a little blog, waaaay down on AT’s nominations list, but I wanted to pop in and say “hi”. You’ve got my vote and I’m excited to have found your blog because I’ll be following along.

    Good luck!

  22. Tracey says

    Beautiful as always! (I am so in love with that little room!) We’ve had/still have grody floors, too… Worn, uneven parquet in the kitchen for years now. It will soon be but a distant memory. :-)

  23. Patti says

    I have what looks to be similar mastic/black goo on our floor (it was the adhesive used to hold down parquet tiles over concrete slab). Anyhoo, we’ve been living with it covered up with a drop cloth for a while now. Did y’all just put your underlayment right over the old adhesive? Or did you try to get any of it up first?

  24. Alea says

    I have not heard the term grody for ages! It made me laugh. And that linoleum you had – looks extremely familiar! We yanked similar looking stuff out of our kitchen a couple years ago.

  25. says

    Dear Layla…I’m totally curious as to why when you started redoing the reading room, why you guys chose to not take out the door jams and ceiling and open that area all up??? Just wondering since it is such a nice little nook and cranny…I love it all however! Come do my house, you know you want to come to Utah LOL I have an 8×8 playroom that is kicking my toosh!

  26. Kat :) says

    Y’all have done such a great job with your house. :) What paint color did y’all use on the door? I love that Grey/Green color.

  27. says

    Love the floors and of course the old door and reading room. What I love most is that you do things on a shoestring budget and give hope to those of us doing the same.
    Have a great week!

  28. Elaine says

    The floors look great guys :). We are in the process of choosing a color to restain our 40 year old oak wood floors in our foyer, hallway, and bedrooms. What stain color did you use? I am deciding between a golden oak and an Early American stain. It is so hard to tell with such a small sample to go by…. Your color I’m guessing is closer to the golden oak stain. It looks beautiful. I also want to say that your site makes my mornings a little brighter :). You guys are great. Thanks for taking the time!

  29. Kate says

    Oooh, I love the floors! Question: when you install the shoe molding, will it be white, or stained to match the floor? I’ve seen this done both ways… is one “right”? Or is it a personal preference thing? Thanks!

  30. says

    I just love what you guys did with the little nook (do I ever not like anything?!) It looks like a quiet little place where I could sip some tea and enjoy a good book away from the rest of the fam. . .if only I didn’t live in a tiny apartment :)

  31. bridget says

    Thank you so much for showing your “before” yucky floor pictures. Our floors are not at all happy making and sometimes I feel like we are the only people who have to wait while saving for something better. I love your home, your style and appreciate your realness!!

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