Moving the sconce from its dubious position in the vestibule was simpler than I imagined it would be: the electrician completed the removal, rewiring, and installation in half an hour or less. There was a few pieces of drywall scraps and powder, so I used the Wet/Dry Vac to tidy up and began mudding and taping when he left.
Here’s a photo story with rudimentary commentary.
The best way to conquer the hallway renovation project is to attack it in stages. There are several areas that must be addressed, including the vestibule, the hallway, the stairs, the floors, the lighting, and the color palette. Each of these can be considered a stage where I focus on that item alone, taking a modular approach where I finish one aspect before moving on to the next logical aspect.
I’ve decided to tackle the vestibule renovation first because it will give me immediate satisfaction and motivate me to tackle the rest of the renovation project. Frankly, the vestibule appears to be the easiest part of this project and it would be ideal if I finished it before winter arrives (working in the winter would make mudding, taping, and painting especially difficult).
I really wanted to add value (and street cred) to our brownstone by tearing out the plaster and exposing the brick in the vestibule. Admittedly, there was some degree of ego encouraging me to do the renovation. The upscale brownstones in Brooklyn Heights all have exposed brick. Why can’t I have something that looks great, too? Why keep it “Plain Jane”? Go for the gusto!
Alas, it won’t work as I want it to. There are two obstacles that I discovered that prevent exposed brick from being a reality: the first obstacle is the front door configuration and the second obstacle is the junction box with electric cabling below the plaster. Neither of these have an easy fix in this stage of reno.