So, the orange carpet I have been complaining about since, well, since before we even moved in? It met its fate this afternoon. I thought we would just rip the unglued carpet up to expose the grey painted linoleum patchwork beneath it. However, when a large piece happened to stick to the carpet backing and exposed a layer of newspapers from April and May 1949 we couldn’t resist going further. Beneath that layer of newspapers lay the original wooden floor boards.
All romance aside, when I posted this picture on Facebook, a friend gently mentioned to be careful as we may have unearthed some lead paint as they did in their own house. Eep! We spent the rest of the afternoon calling around to find out about home tests, and Googling the scary lead facts. We still don’t know for sure so we are camping out in the spare room while we figure out our next step. We didn’t do any sanding or chipping which seems to be the largest concern, but we did begin removing the linoleum.
The hallway and other rooms already have a layer of wood/particle board down so we will be doing the same in the bedroom and then laying simple pine flooring on top of that since we have read it is likely better just to let non-chipping paint well alone and bury it.
Now it has us thinking about all the other places lead may be lurking in our home. My beloved mismatched plates? Vintage toys? Other painted surfaces in our house? Vintage is lovely and romantic, but not always safe or practical. Another (rather unsettling) reality of living in a 104 year old cabin, I suppose. They say if you live in a house built before 1960 or even 1970 chances are you have lead paint in your home.
The up side? It looks as though a new set of dishes and some wood flooring may be in my very near future. As for those papers, well, you’d have sworn Mike and I had found buried treasure judging by our level of excitement. Ignorance is bliss, what can I say.
go gently + be wonderful