Bathroom Window 2.0

Tuesday | December 17th, 2013

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When we had the bathroom done, we wanted to design our own window for the part of the wall which straddles the storage space along the side of the house. This way we could have clean airflow through the bathroom in warmer weather and certain smells wouldn’t stagnate in the room. There’s a good shot of this hole in Bathroom Fiesta.

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By our first winter we hadn’t done anything with the hole and it was getting cold. Meow used her lamination machine and put up a piece of translucent plastic. We still had our light and the wind was blocked off. When it got warmer, Meow made another (above, left) one with heart shaped holes that had piece of screen to keep the mosquitoes out.

Our plan has always been to use Bombay Sapphire bottles and white cement to make something colorful and complementary for our yellow bathroom. This summer would have been great to do just that and the cement would have cured quickly … but we didn’t or we forgot or something.

This year, I wanted to do something nicer for the hole and concocted a frame design and planned on laminating something blue as sort of a compromise for the window we wanted but wouldn’t be able to make (at least until next summer). I bought only one piece of powder blue felt and it jammed and wrinkled in the laminator because it was too thick. I used the rice paper I’d set aside to redo the paper on the bathroom door instead (above, right).

It looked great. There were spaces around the top and bottom that I thought I’d fill with silicone before it got too cold. Meow loved the choice of rice paper, but worried that the wood would mold. And she was right, within three weeks, black mold was growing on my unstained pine frame. With Holt coming for a house visit, I skipped Taekwondo for two nights to build version 2.0 of my window.

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My revised design uses flange pieces on the interior outside of the frame itself (above, left). This will cover the cracks that I never got around to buying a caulking gun and that tube of silicone for. The secondary function is to hold the innermost layer of plastic film in place. This one is clear. The outermost film layer will have a fresh section of rice paper. To fit the frame into the hole, the wood had to be shaped to fit around the globs of cement. I tried to chip it out when working on the first window, but it was put down by a retarded monkey (a.k.a. Reno-guy) and it became clear that I’d likely damage part of the bathroom wall or worse, crack a tile. Shaping each piece of wood for all four sides of the frame was a much easier solution.

For the first window this took roughly four hours with a Swiss Army knife and checking the fit of each piece constantly. For the second window, having a correct version to reference and eyeball, it took about an hour with the help of a scroll saw (above, middle and right).

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I also used the first frame to very precisely cut a new piece of rice paper. In addition to the wood molding in the first version, water also seeped into the rice paper and the flowers and leaves bled. I believe this is because I just laminated a big piece of paper and then cut it to fit the frame and then drove staples through the plastic and the paper. In the second design, a fitted to the frame piece of paper will allow me to seal the edges and drive the staples through the plastic only (above, both; below, left and right).

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The back film just barely covered the frame. I spent a lot of time cleaning Twitchy hair off of the interior sides of the plastic before I could tack down the decorative piece. This is the completed second version (above, middle and right).

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