Friday, January 21, 2011

The Most Important Nursery Renovation

Now, for those of you who are lucky enough to not live in a "fixer-upper", you may not have ever thought of this as part of preparing for baby.  In our 1950's house, most of the doors will not close and latch.  Or if they do, they are so tight you have to throw your entire body weight against them to open them.  This comes from over-painting frames, settling, former carpeting over hardwoods, and poor renovations done by the previous owners.  Chris has been on a mission to gradually fix doors in our house.  A couple have been complete replacements (like in the basement), some have just involved new doors, but not new frames, and some, like the nursery, have received new knobs, or re-hanging of the current knobs and/or strike plates.

The nursery door would not latch.  With a couple of curious animals, this was a MAJOR problem.  Even now, we are starting to try and keep them out of the room so that it will be less of an issue when the Lion arrives.  Let's see if you can identify the most important tool for the project from looking at Chris's toolbelt.

Don't see it yet?  I'll give you a hint and zoom in...

Still nothing?  Here it is...

Yes, that is an old, busted up tube of lipstick.  Preferably in an obnoxiously bright color.  This is called "Drumbeat Red."  PERFECT for what you're going to use it for.

First, apply the lipstick to your latch, mostly along the pointed area.

Close the door.  This is what the strike plate will look like if the door is properly hung.  The lipstick will track along the plate into the hole.  However, as you can tell from the torn up frame, the plate had previously been hung too low and Chris had to chisel out the wood so it could be hung higher.

 That's just a simple matter of a hammer and a chisel, but the lipstick is really the key.  Without it, we were at a loss as to why the latch wouldn't catch.

Happy renovating!


  1. Holy crap, that's GENIUS!!! I've honestly never heard of doing that before.

  2. GREAT TIP!!!!! THAT IIIIIISSSSSS GENIUS!!! Can't wait to see the nursery makeover as we work on ours!!!

  3. ha! lipstick is a useful tool for guys and gals! i have never heard of such!

  4. You're a genius. Our house is 1950's too and a fixer upper!