For the most part the room is 1924 original. There were some ugly prefab oak cabinets installed on one wall, but they are now long gone.
What I am left with is a room that is in some desperate need of sprucing up. The cabinets need to be reshellacked. Walls need to be wallpapered and repainted (paint and wallpaper already purchased). Trim needs to be replaced in areas where it is missing. The dingy-oh-so-attractive accoustic ceiling needs to be replaced. 1980's fixtures need to be replaced (already purchased). And the floors need to be refinished. Eventually a matching cabinet will need to be added to one of the bare walls.
First things first. I decided to start from the top down. A few weeks ago, I tested the ceiling for asbestos. It's hard to tell how old it is, but it has been painted many times and is about an inch thick. I've never seen anything like it before. Tests came back negative.
So, we spent some time at Menards researching options this past weekend. Menards was not my first choice, but after contacting a number of tin ceiling companies by phone I was left somewhat frustrated by their lack of customer service.....and reluctant to do business with them only to find myself midway through installation with a problem....sitting for hours in phone hold hell. So, this brings us back to Menards.
Here are the options:
1.) Real tin ceiling. Pros: it's historically accurate. And as much as I try to not to be obsessive, this appeals to my purist side. Cons: It is the priciest option at $4.25/sq ft. It also is the most hassle to install. Special order.
2.) Press & Stick Thermoplastic Tin Replica. Comes like tin sheets, but is high-impact plastic. Truth: This one isn't going to crack it for me regardless of its pros. I just can't bring myself to hang something with "peel & stick" in its name. I just can't do it.
3.) Armstrong's Tin Tile. I initially poo-pooed this one, but it has been growing on me. They are lightweight ceiling tiles with a tin-style design stamped on their surface. Pros: Easy to install. Painted they almost look like the real thing. Fire retardand. Easy to replace. Least expensive option at $1.27/sq ft. Cons: Not tin. Disappoints the purist side of me. Rationalization: I could actually get the ceiling done using this route. And as my mom pointed out, if it turns out I don't like it......I can easily pull it down and put up the real thing in a year or so.