Holiday Season DIY Flooring Projects

Hi Neighbors!

As we approach the holiday season, many of you are interested in sprucing up your home before company arrives. My motherin- law has all of the children visiting for Thanksgiving and she has been deep cleaning for weeks already! It is a great time to replace old and worn floors. When the whole gang comes for a visit, many times we end up on an air mattress or the children on a pallet of blankets. Is your carpet ready to be a bed for the week?

This is a busy time of the year with so many clients wanting to change a room for company. Our installers become overbooked and cannot always fit your project in before the big day or the arrival of your family. I wanted to give you a few suggestions for Do-It-Yourself flooring products to quickly spruce up a space.

1. It may be obvious, but frequently forgotten: the area rug. Classically overlooked, an area rug is a quick fix for changing a space without breaking the budget or disturbing a household. With a full flooring installation, there are many items to move and rearrange. Generally, you can slide a bed or move an end table and drop in a new area rug. If you carpet is unsightly, be it old or lackluster, simply find a fun patterned rug and change a space in a matter of minutes. This is also a budget friendly solution. We carry over 300 area rugs in stock at our Main Street location. We also have the ability to bind any carpet in the store with 3 days notice.
2. A second piece to consider is floating sheet vinyl. This is great for a quick bathroom or kitchen floor update in the tile patterns or even change out a guest bedroom with a wood grain pattern. Sheet vinyl has been around for many years. It is a tried and true piece for easy cleaning and the evolution of the product has made it extremely DIYfriendly. With the proper subfloor preparation, no adhesive is required. It is thick and durable with great cushion under foot.
3. Bedrooms, home offices, outdoor porches or dens are all a great place to use the next product: carpet squares. Milliken created a carpet square which requires no glue to install. Kraus has a piece we stock for only $1.79 sf and Shaw created a installation system using small sticky dots that will hold for commercial traffic. There are endless styles and colors in the squares. You can mix and match styles to create a beautiful and unique pattern for your space. The beauty of squares is the ease of installation without emptying a room. They lay one square at a time and you can move furniture back on them as soon as they are down with certain adhesives. While not a manufactured approved installation, we have frequently used these products on non-temperature controlled spaces such as an enclosed porch. They wear amazingly well regardless of foot traffic - because of the commercial wear rating. Working with the squares is as simple as laying them on the floor. 4. Any room in the home can be a great place to lay a click lock floor. Many people are familiar with laminate, but did you know almost all products now come in a click lock version perfect for DIY projects? You can get a laminate in a wood grain or tile visual, a luxury vinyl in a wood grain or tile visual and even engineered hardwood in any species with a locking system. The vinyl pieces are water resistant and can be used in wet areas and nontemperature controlled sun porches. Most click and lock floors do require a pad under them to keep the locking system from damage and to limit sound. Luxury vinyl is soft and quiet under foot. You can use most anything to clean the vinyl pieces where on some hardwoods and laminates water is not an option for a cleaning procedure.
So there you have it, some great options for Do-It-Yourself flooring! Our installation crews are fantastic and we will work hard to complete projects for your deadline, but if you want to save on the labor and handle it yourself, we are always happy to provide you with manufacturer instructions and tips. Please give us a call if we can be of service to you as you prepare for the holidays. Kate

I will leave you with the newest addition to my dessert arsenal for a party favorite: Coconut-Pecan German Chocolate Pie

Coconut-Pecan German Chocolate Pie Recipe
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 50 min. + chilling Bake: 35 min. + chilling
YIELD:8 servings

1-1/4 cups all-purpose flour 
1/4 teaspoon salt 
6 tablespoons cold lard 
3 to 4 tablespoons ice water 

4 ounces German sweet chocolate, chopped 
2 ounces unsweetened chocolate, chopped 
1 can (14 ounces) sweetened condensed milk 
4 egg yolks 
1 teaspoon vanilla extract 
1 cup chopped pecans 

1/2 cup packed brown sugar 
1/2 cup heavy whipping cream 
1/4 cup butter, cubed 
2 egg yolks 
1 cup flaked coconut 
1 teaspoon vanilla extract 
1/4 cup chopped pecans 

1. In a small bowl, mix flour and salt; cut in lard until crumbly. Gradually add ice water, tossing with a fork until dough holds together when pressed. Shape into a disk; wrap in plastic wrap. Refrigerate 30 minutes or overnight. 
2. Preheat oven to 400°. On a lightly floured surface, roll dough to a 1/8-in.-thick circle; transfer to a 9-in. pie plate. Trim pastry to 1/2 in. beyond rim of plate; flute edge. Line unpricked pastry with a double thickness of foil. Fill with pie weights, dried beans or uncooked rice. 
3. Bake 11-13 minutes or until bottom is lightly browned. Remove foil and weights; bake 6-8 minutes longer or until light brown. Cool on a wire rack. Reduce oven setting to 350°. 
4. In a microwave, melt chocolates in a large bowl; stir until smooth. Cool slightly. Whisk in milk, egg yolks and vanilla; stir in pecans. Pour into crust. Bake 16-19 minutes or until set. Cool 1 hour on a wire rack. 
5. Meanwhile, in a small heavy saucepan, combine brown sugar, cream and butter. Bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring to dissolve sugar. Remove from heat. 
6. In a small bowl, whisk a small amount of hot mixture into egg yolks; return all to pan, whisking constantly. Cook 2-3 minutes or until mixture thickens and a thermometer reads 160°, stirring constantly. Remove from heat. Stir in coconut and vanilla; cool 10 minutes. 
7. Pour over filling; sprinkle with pecans. Refrigerate 4 hours or until cold. Yield: 8 servings.

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