vendredi 18 avril 2008

We finally got our new windows from K par K installed. (old ones shown on left, new ones on the right)

After much confusion over what they could and could not do esthetically due to the appearance of the rest of the windows in the building, they finally delivered this, which is not at all what I was expecting.
I was expecting the bottom quarter to not be see-through. Now I feel quite exposed because people can see in from the street, especially at night. I insisted that we buy curtains.
They are the highest sound protection offered- 42 dB. Our previous windows were 27 dB or so and were installed about 15 years ago. We tried to sell the old ones, but had no luck. The only people who could have reasonably used them were the others in our building, since they are custom-sized. We put up a For Sale sign in the hallway and I listed them on Ebay, but had no takers. These new window/doors plus the window in our bedroom cost us 4000€. Yikes. At least installation was included. Also, I think we will get 1300€ back from the government because of the upgrade in thermal insulation.
My biggest worry was whether they would be worth it- is there enough of a difference that we don't hear the street noise? The answer is yes. We still hear honks and motorcycles revving, but not the regular noise of cars whizzing past. I was actually able to sleep last night without earplugs. Actually, I can sleep quite well in the afternoon on the couch with the street noise and at nights with a movie playing, but once I get in bed and it is the designated time to sleep, I can't sleep without earplugs.
So I guess overall it was worth it. Now I am just waiting for our neighbor to, well, be elsewhere.
The day after they were installed we went to Castorama, Carrefour, and finally Ikea. After lengthy discussions about colors and what kind of rods to buy, we finally settled on two black rods. The one in front will have curlique things at the end.
As for the curtains, we finally decided on thin white ones for the inner layer (when you want light to get through but not for people to see in) and dark brown for the outer layer.
Installing the rods was interesting. We have, soldered into our walls, unattractive metal holders, each with two little grey sticks pointing up. We had to cut our 2.5 m bars, then drill holes in the rods to place them on the holder.

As for hemming the 3 m curtains, it is becoming a rather lengthy process. First I washed them so that they would shrink and get nice and wrinkly. Then hung them up, tried to measure the correct length, pinned them, used hemming sticky tape, and got rather uneven lines. Still haven't worked up the energy to do the brown ones yet, so one is hanging up with the pins, the other is draped over a chair. Why rush it when it will just be crooked anyway? (One of those things that you realize afterwards you should have just paid a tailor to do it for 15€. At least then if they were crooked you would have someone else to blame.)

5 commentaires:

Starman a dit…

I think I prefer the new windows even if you need a curtain to keep out voyeuristic eyes.

alisa in Los Angeles a dit…

I like the new windows too. They are you really think people will be staring up at you? Anyway, I'm sure the curtains will look nice as well. Funny...I sleep with earplugs too. Have for so long and I don't live on a busy street I just like silence when I sleep. Not sure if I'll need them when we move to france, since our house is in the country without anyone around..for some reason I bet I'll still use them.

screamish a dit…

Hey let me know who to contact for the thermal it la mairie or les impots???

I cant believe its so long since you ordered those windows...months, isnt it??

Anonyme a dit…

Wait until it's hot, you'll love your new windows even more!

As for the curtains, don't worry. I am sure they will turn out fine. In this house, people didn't want to hem them so they just hang them with nails (!) and they were way too long. Terrible.

Eileen a dit…

How much fun! Buying windows for your home in France.

Eileen (passions to pastry)@

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