Master Bedroom Electrical Work (which will probably be as boring as it sounds despite my valiant efforts)

In our last episode of “Kenny and Annie Take On a Ridiculous Project and Attempt to Survive and Not Get a Divorce,” we had finally finished demo and started framing.

Which meant that (*cue the dramatic “dun dun dunnnnn” music*) it was time for me to figure out all of the electrical stuff.

WHY I became the de facto electrician in this relationship remains a mystery. It’s probably my subconscious protecting Kenny in an effort to keep him alive. It’s fine. I’ll electrocute myself. But Kenny? NO.

One of the first things we had to do was move the hallway light. It had been installed on the ceiling that we removed, so we decided to center it over the stairs, which was a move of about 18 inches. We also had to move the accompanying switch.

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Unfortunately, the new location was right under a ceiling truss, so we had to use a shallow junction box. You can see the old light location above. Yeah, that wouldn’t have worked. We’ll patch that hole later. In about a decade.

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I then installed my first 4-way switch and added an outlet on the bedroom side of the wall. (Photo from Instagram).

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We also decided to add a light over the stairs at the same time, tied into the same switch as the light we just moved. The stairway is nice and large and open and very very dark. This meant I had to do some ladder acrobatics to make it happen.

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Not terrifying at all, nope. The task also involved crawling through the ceiling, my new favorite thing. #opposite.

Now we just have to figure out what sort of fixture to put there. I want to put our dining room light here, but the chain isn’t long enough…unless I stop being fussy about it. We’ll see where we end up.

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Then it was time to create an actual plan instead of flying by the seat of our pants (<—weirdest phrase ever).

The back of a bank receipt worked. We taped it upside-down to match the orientation of the room. Hi-tech we definitely are.

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The “plan” (hahaha) actually was super helpful to refer to when figuring everything out. To summarize it, there are four main lighting zones in the room.

The first is two new recessed lights I installed in the closet. There were two really fun parts of this install: 1) figuring out placement (so they would be centered, on something/anything–the window, the closet, the room?–and also avoiding the roof trusses) and 2) actually stringing the wires through the ceiling. I went above, clambering and contorting my way through our scissors trusses, and Kenny poked and pulled from below.

TL;DR: It was hard. We did it.

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The second lighting zone is 3 outlets I wired as split receptacles (for bedside lamps). I wired two new outlets and reconfigured a third existing one. This will allow us to flip a switch by the bedroom doorway and have our lamps come on that way. A fourth switch had been split but I reverted it back to normal since it now is in the closet. All of this was less hard.

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The third lighting zone is our overhead/statement lighting. This I chose to come down from the peak of the ceiling and I don’t have a good picture of this because I’m not finished yet. Just picture our ceiling looking something like this:

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I have, however, purchased a very large, very cheap chandelier that I am very excited about. I’ll put this on a dimmer switch for even MORE added excitement and drama. Try to contain yourself please.

The fourth and final lighting area is over our “seating” area. We’ll have enough room at the end of the bed for a small loveseat or a couple of chairs or perhaps both. So over this area I installed 3 recessed lights, centered on the window, on a dimmer switch.

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I still have a bunch of loose ends to tie up (obviously), but here’s how the main light switch to the right of the doorway is looking. From L-R:

  • Switch for split outlets (for lamps plugged into those outlets)
  • Future spot for dimmer switch for statement/overhead chandelier
  • Dimmer switch for recessed lighting over the seating area

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Hmmm. It makes more sense when you’re actually in the room. Wanna come over?

Next up is drywall hanging and patching, which we hope to hire out but are having a ridiculous time finding a contractor. Help!

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