Sunday, October 17, 2010

Central Vacuum System (almost complete)

A few weeks ago I set (threw) my 5 year old standing filtered, bagless vacuum out in the beezeway.

The spring that held the wheels in place has sprung. It escaped. Gone.

This means that the wheels not only did not stay in the correct position when vacuuming, but sometimes they would actually turn around backwards, and become somewhat stubborn. Getting a clean carpet was like trying go get a burro to run sprints. Or even move.


We've got a 1/2 mile of cv tubing throughout the house. It was time to put it to work.

I called up Kirkwood Vacuum, in Cincinnati, on Kenwood. I got an answering machine. I left a message. Something about being the easiest ^&%#@^ sale they'll ever make, that my husband owed me, he promised me a CV system and it was about time to pay up. I said call him, tell him his wife said to install the ^^&**@%* thing, and that resistance was futile.

Something like that.

$1000 later, we have a vacuum that can suck a kitten into the basement and not even clog the system. We have 30 feet of tubing, some cool attachments, and most importantly,

a husband






Best call I ever made.

Pictures and explanations to come.
.... as soon as he's done with the crevice tool in the den.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

I'm all verKlimt...

White walls. Antique white. Boooooor -ing.

Been that way since we first did our mad dash to paint all the walls with our 5 gallon rented paint sprayer from Home Depot, and got 2 coats on all three stories in under 24 hours almost 2 years ago. (see Dry Wall Finishing & Paint)

I don't know where these ideas come from, but.... I thought about painting a mural over the fireplace in our bedroom. No, not on canvas, right on the wall.

You see, a few months ago I was looking on the internet for some pictures of classic art to print out on 4x6" post it note cards for my dull office 'putty' coloured cabinets. I came across the 'Tree of Life" by Klimt and just loved it. I tucked it in the back of my brain and left it there.

A few months later, I found a projection lens on Ebay. It was cheaper than renting a regular projector, by about $60, but it required some assembly.

It was a bit of a clustermuffin in that you had to find something to use as a projector (like a TV or laptop) and either and turn the projector upside down (because of the inverting properties of the lens, much like the human eye)- or turn the image upside down.

Luckily for me I was just doing a picture so I could invert the image on my laptop instead of turning the whole laptop upside down. Then I had to build a cardboard box frame around it, paint it black inside, tape the box to the front of my laptop screen, then make another focusing frame with the lens on another piece of cardboard, cut a large hole in that (like an iris of the eye), put the iris frame in the box and focus it by moving it back and forth inside the box until the image came out clear on the wall ... Oh, and it could only be done at night. Which of course, made it HARD TO SEE. Yeah, a mess.

Anyway, I finally got it to work, (barely- it wasn't very clear) and I projected the image of the Klimt "Tree of Life" on my wall... not the whole picture, just the tree in the center. I traced it with a pencil on to the 5 foot by 8 foot surface.

Well, I finally took the next steps this weekend... in Acrylic paint. I held a print out of the piece in one hand and just tried copying the colours on to the wall the best I could using a paint brush borrowed from my mother-in-law and a small plastic drawer as a palette. (seeing as I was going to be doing most of this painting on a ladder up 8-10 feet off the ground, I didn't want to spill any thinned paint.

It's a work in progress.

DH's mom, who is a professional artist, overheard I was painting and offered me room in her art studio to work on my project. Now THAT would be interesting. :-)

Also, just found out last night that although DH thought I was nuts for wanting to do this, he never said anything until, well... last night. Funny how sometimes it actually takes LETTING someone do what YOU think is crazy in order for YOU to find out that it's pretty damn cool after all.

More to come.