The Woodka Remodel: Week Seventeen

Work, work, work... Never-ending work is continuing in week seventeen at the Woodka house. The last several weeks have seen a majority of the work being moved inside with drywalling, painting, and floor installation. The interior work continues this week, but activity is starting to ramp up again to the home's exterior.

Continuing Interior Finish Work

Due to the large amount of flooring that is being replaced (almost the entire interior is getting new floors), that work is taking a lot of time. The new flooring on the main level is sustainable, extremely durable yet beautiful bamboo hardwood flooring. The installation contractors are doing an outstanding job, making sure that all of the new flooring is put down properly to ensure long-term beauty and protection.

This week's bamboo flooring installation is focusing on the new stairway system. The new layout design has called for all new stairwells going both upstairs and downstairs from the main level.  Fabrication of strand woven bamboo stair treads will give the new stairs the same beautiful appearance as the main level floors. Using the most sustainable materials possible is a hallmark of any green home, and the Woodka's new rapidly-renewable bamboo flooring fits the bill nicely.

Cork Flooring

While the bamboo flooring on the main level has been getting all of the attention lately, it's not the only sustainable flooring material being utilized in the Wooda green makeover. The downstairs rec room, bedroom and hallway as well as a second-level bedroom are receiving brand-new cork flooring. Installation of this new cork flooring is starting this week, and is being done by the homeowners themselves.

Cork flooring is made from the bark of the cork oak tree. The bark is trimmed and removed from the tree approximately every nine years. The interior bark layer is left untouched and that allows the tree to continue to generate new bark. It’s common to have a 200+ year old tree still producing cork bark. Cork is commonly used for wine bottles; cork flooring is made using from leftover pieces and scraps fromthe manufacture of bottle corks. The fact that trees are not killed for cork, and that the cork flooring is made largely from waste materials make it very environmentally-friendly and sustainable.

Cork flooring has other benefits that make it an excellent flooring material: it naturally absorbs sound and provides cushioning, it is mold and mildew resistant, and is long-lasting and low maintenance. In addition, cork flooring is very attractive; it is available in a variety of earth tone colors and textures.

To learn more about the benefits of natural cork flooring, read our article HERE.


Reclaimed Wood Countertop

As we have been mentioning throughout the coverage of this renovation, sustainability and efficiency have been of the utmost importance at every step of the design and construction process. The homeowners have been thorough in choosing the most environmentally-friendly materials for their 'new' home, and are demonstrating that with a little research, greener options are available for just about any area of a home.

One very large (and gorgeous) example of their dedication to sustainable materials in the Woodka home is going to be the new kitchen island. The owners wanted a beautiful countertop that would make this new island the visual centerpiece of the kitchen, while also being durable enough for the island to be a functional part of the kitchen. In their quest for a unique island counter, they discovered a small company in Corruna, Michigan called 2nd Chance Wood Company. 2nd Chance Wood seeks out wood material from reclaimed sources: old barns, warehouses, church pews..... any old wood structure or furniture made from wood is a potential source of wood. The wood used in older structures is often very high-quality, sourced from centuries-old Old Growth trees that were harvested from the great forests of America in the 19th century. This quality of wood is simply not available in new wood products anymore; the few old-growth trees left are typically protected, as they should be. When old structures are torn down, the old high-quality wood materials often is sent to landfills, or burned.

Rather than send this high-quality wood to the waste heap, 2nd Chance is giving it new life. For the Woodka home, they have been working to create a new island countertop, fashioned entirely out of beautiful air-dried Black Walnut planks that were reclaimed from an old demolished barn in nearby Corruna. Reclaimed wood, sourced locally: the new kitchen island is a sustainable double threat... and it will be a fabulous addition to the new kitchen. In week seventeen, the owners picked up the new Black Walnut planks from 2nd Chance Wood Company; they will be ready for installation soon!


Outdoor Work

As all of the interior finishing work continues, the team is ramping the exterior work back up after a few weeks indoors.

The exterior work taking place in week seventeen is rather light, but takes place ahead of a larger ramp up in coming weeks: siding the new house.

In preparation for the installation of all-new exterior siding, this week saw the delivery of the James Hardie fiber cement siding. Weather permitting, the new siding will start going up very soon.

Like all of the new materials for the renovation, fiber cement siding was chosen for reasons of sustainability, durability, and appearance. To learn more about the environmental benefits of fiber cement siding, read our article HERE.

Double doors for the new outdoor attached shed (built with leftover PorterSIPs) were also installed this week. The new shed will be used to store yard and garden equipment, as well as pool equipment for the future swimming pool.

Week Seventeen Round-Up

As with most weeks, lots of things were happening in week seventeen. New flooring installation continued, as well as preparation for continuing finishing work in the new kitchen and the all-new fiber cement siding. Join us as we venture into weeks eighteen and nineteen HERE.

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