Hidden treasures we have found during demolition #2

Behind the wallpaper we didn’t just find treasures made of paper…

In the hallway we saw piece of a doorframe. This was all boarded up so we wondered why they would leave it in this weird way. On the other side, in the front room, you couldn’t tell if there was anything there. It was just a (somewhat) smooth wall.

Front room wiht the wall covered

So when we started stripping this room we assumed chances were slim we would find anything other than a big hole in the wall.

Patrick ripping of the board

But what do you know? Behind the wallpaper we found a big piece of laminate. And when we removed it, we found the original door behind it!

The door is very damaged and was nailed inside the doorframe with dozens of long nails. As you can see here:

Door in the frame viewed from the front room

But it’s an original door! Whoohoo, we are so lucky to have found this. On the first floor not all doors are original, so we can use this one instead.

On the hallway side the door still looked pretty neat.

Door viewed from the hallway

Patrick managed to get the door out without (any more) damage. So once restored we can repurpose this door.

The big gaping hole in the wall will be closed. Professionally this time. Closing this will give us more usable space in the front room and on the hallway-side we can now have a radiator.

Original door we found in the front room

What’s behind door nr. 1?

We were super happy with the door we found in the front room, but we even found more treasures in the garage.

In the garage, below the roof on two beams, we found two more doors.

We didn’t notice them before (or at least we didn’t know them to be doors). Although I was happy with the find, chances were these doors wouldn’t be in good shape after laying in a moist garage for god knows how long.

The chance these doors wouldn’t have started rotting and would still look halfway decent is slim.

Laminated door we found in the garage

They did turn out to be ugly doors covered with laminate. But once removed with my trusty mini wrecking bar they turned out pretty nice.

Two original doors drying in the sun
The two doors are upside down here and drying in the sun because they were a bit damp.

Once restored we will use these doors to replace the doors to the kitchen. This way we will have all matching doors across the ground floor.

We are very happy to have found three beautiful doors. In the end we will restore all of them. This will take some time I think. Just getting all the old layers of paint off and repainting them is a big task in itself. We will see how we get on.

8 Replies to “Hidden treasures we have found during demolition #2”

  1. Hi Dorien and Patrick! Yaaay! I’m enjoying reading about what you are both discovering as you pull apart your home and renovate it. Those old doors are great and should become beautiful again when you’ve restored them. Btw, Christine & Jan (Manchester/Berlin blog from which I first found your blog!) have good, easy info on efficiently stripping old paint layers. I have bought a cheap little two bedroom weatherboard (wood) cottage in rural Australia which I share with my 4(!) small dogs (my 2 kids are grown up and left home now). It was built in about 1955 I think…so not really very old! It needs lots of renovating so I’m hoping to learn how to do some of it myself. The only DIY reno experience I have so far is some minor demolition and wall painting! Do you both work part-time on your house renovations (weekends, evenings etc)? Elizabeth S.

    1. Hi Elizabeth,
      Your comment is not lost 🙂 I just have to approve them manually. I’m pretty new to blogging and I don’t like spammy comments. Your comments are lovely though. I follow Christine & Jan as well but I will look for the paint stripping article. I have a lot more paint stripping projects to come.
      Your cottage sounds lovely, must be fun for the dogs as well.
      We both work fulltime and do renovation in spare time. So the demolition and prepping we do ourselves and a lot of the paintwork. And we will be doing a lot of other things (we don’t really comprehend now haha). We don’t DIY the things that have to do with water/gas/electrical work (because of insurance legislation) and we have a builder for constructionwork and stucco (because of time). Especially for the start we get a lot of it done, but we will have plenty of projects to do ourselves.
      We try to plan DIY days, but I am very insistent on it being fun as long as possible. So if there is a day we don’t feel like working on the house, we just don’t. Otherwise it will get old real fast I think.
      When it comes to experience we don’t have any besides painting the occasional wall and the biggest thing I’ve learned from this so far is that you just have to do it without overthinking it. It’s super easy to get overwhelmed, but there is a lot of info out there. My biggest tip regarding this is that it always gets better. Sure when you do it yourself it might take a longer time and the finish might not be spotless, but a) you get to enjoy your own work b) you learned something. And if it doesn’t work out it usually can be fixed. It’s just another DIY then 🙂

      1. Hehe, I will just have to be more patient next time after I comment! Especially since my time zone is opposite to yours. You’re right about giving many home projects a go….and bringing in the specialist help when needed. At this stage in my life I am time-rich, but money-poor, so I’m keen to do what I can myself… plus I really enjoy learning new practical type skills. Keep on bloggin’! Elizabeth.

        1. honestly I don’t cvheck for comments every day because I don’t have that many visitors (yet). So I appreciate your comments even more 🙂
          Yes the specialists are way faster and this was a big deal for us because we had to live in the house pretty fast after buying it. And having some basic plumbing is nice to get it at least to spartan standards haha.
          I think at this rate we will be money-poor soon as well, so I totally get it! What kind of project would you like to start on at home?

          1. My highest priority (apart from currently clearing out some clutter cos I have slight(!) hoarding tendencies) is to sand and polish the wooden floorboards. They’re cypress pine I think (each board is narrow, only 7cm wide) and are throughout almost all of my home. I ripped up the gross fluffy, cream carpet and crumbling underlay a while ago, then got a (large!) quote from a floor sander company but I’m thinking to try the sanding myself…at least one room and see how I go. My kitchen floorboards were covered in multiple layers…worn vinyl, over Masonite underlay, over old linoleum tiles glued onto the floorboards with very strong glue! Are they original hardwood (wide) floorboards you have there? I also like the little, fancy original(?) features I can see in some of your pics. Are they uniquely Dutch? My house has some fancy ceiling edging but that’s about it! E.

          2. Your lucky to have found such a nice wooden floor! What I understand it is pretty tough to renovate, but totally worth it! We do have wooden floor boards but they are not suitable for and upgrade. They are not in the best shape, but they are the ‘under floor’. Meaning there is nothing but air and foundation beams beneath them. (Is this in Australia as well? Might be Dutch building practice.) This kind of floor is very cold because there is literally no insulation between the ground and the floor. So if we were to have a hardwood floor it would be placed on top of this wooden floor.
            The kitchen floors…yes I am looking forward tearing htese up. We have multiple there as well… Fun times haha.
            You have a good eye by the way. We do have a lot of original features and some of them are super nice and others need some (a LOT) of love. But I will do multiple posts on the features, so keep an eye out for them 🙂

  2. Hi Dorien and Patrick! Oops…I think there was a problem with my most recent comment…I’m a blog newbie! Yaaay, I’m enjoying your home renovation discoveries and those old doors will become beautiful again when you’ve restored them. I have a little 1950’s two bedroom Australian weatherboard (wood) cottage which is in need of much renovation so I am hoping to do some of the work myself. So far I only have DIY reno experience in minor demolition and wall painting… Elizabeth S.

  3. Hi Dorien! Oops…I commented twice on your blog post yesterday and they both seem to have disappeared while awaiting moderation. Anyway, I will wait a while to see if they reappear! I’m enjoying your home reno discoveries. Elizabeth S.

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