How to remove stubborn screws

4 Guaranteed Tricks To Remove Stubborn Screws

Last week I talked about how to remove paint from hardware so in keeping with that theme I wanted to discuss some tips to remove stubborn screws. After all, you can’t restore old hardware unless you can first get it off the door or window it’s attached to. Old flat head screws that have been [...] Read on →

How to remove paint from hardware

How To: Remove Paint From Hardware

Old hardware is just like everything else in an old house, covered with decades of paint. Antique hardware can be some very attractive and beautifully crafted pieces of art that is well worth restoring. To restore that hardware you don’t want to just start scraping the paint off with an old screw driver. You’ll gouge [...] Read on →

Small space

How To: Make a Small House Feel Large

Old houses are often much smaller than their counterparts today. The size of the average American home has grown enormously over the 20th century. From an average size of around 1,100 sq. ft. at the beginning of the century to 2,169 sq. ft. as of 2010, which is down from the all-time high of 2,248 [...] Read on →

Great stuff

4 Cures For a Drafty Old House

Old houses can be drafty. It’s a fact. But just because they are drafty doesn’t mean they have to stay that way. The good news is it doesn’t require a huge sum of money spent on big projects like windows replacement to stop the drafts. There are several very affordable and easy things you can [...] Read on →

Living in the Past Book

My New eBook is Now Available!

Today is a big day at The Craftsman Blog! For the past year and a half, I have been toiling to write my first full-length book about historic homes. Today that book goes from idea to reality! I’m doing a HUGE one week only sale for all my readers and their friends. If you have [...] Read on →

Wood Finishes

Selecting The Right Wood Finish

You could fill a library with the different ways of finishing wood. There are oils and lacquers, urethanes and stains, sealers and varnishes. Some are wiped on, some are sprayed, while still others are brushed on. I could fill a book on just this subject alone so this post will be more of a primer to [...] Read on →

Old Window

How To: Paint a Wood Window Sash

After all the hard work is done restoring a wood window there is one final step, painting your window sash. Painting a window is by far the most important part of the process because it protects all the work underneath. It keeps sun, rain, dirt, insects, air and anything else from harming your window. Without [...] Read on →

Alligatoring Paint

4 Common Paint Problems & How to Fix Them

If you own an old house you have paint problems…somewhere. It may be from a poor paint job at some point or a paint job that is just too old. Keeping your house painted properly, especially the exterior, is imperative to the long term care of your house. Exterior elements deteriorate quickly without a protective [...] Read on →

Our finished bath with my special shower curtain rod

How To: Make an Industrial Style Curtain Rod

In our tiny guest house project I mentioned that I made a shower curtain rod from electrical conduit for a great industrial feel. Not only did this give a cool style to the bathroom, but it is extremely affordable (under $25!) and can be shaped to any odd sized shower enclosure. Really, this project can [...] Read on →

Photo Courtesy: www.janrutaelectric.com

6 Questions to Ask When Buying an Old House

Buying a house is a big decision. It’s likely the largest purchase you’ll make in your lifetime. And while there are plenty of questions you should ask about any new home purchase, buying an old house requires a different set of questions. No one wants to buy a lemon, so before you fall too deeply [...] Read on →

Image Credit: 100abandonedhouses.com

Preventative Maintenance Checklist

Maintaining an old house can seem like a full time job at times. Old homes were built with materials and in a manner that requires regular maintenance. While this maintenance requires time it is ultimately a more affordable option than today’s home design of replacement rather than repair. Regular Inspections Regularly inspecting your old house [...] Read on →

How To Cope & Install Trim

How To: Cope & Install Trim Like a Pro

Installing trim properly requires an eye for detail and a few specific tools and techniques. The best historic trim and moldings were installed in a seamless way called “coping” that hides joints while still allowing for the house to move and settle with the decades. A coped joint is a big part of the installation [...] Read on →

How to Pressure Wash Wood Siding

Pressure Washing an Old Home

Using a pressure washer on an old home is not as simple as you might think. While it may be a great way to clean dirty siding and prep for new paint, if not done properly it can cause more harm than good. You can cause damage to wood or older soft masonry and force [...] Read on →