Posts tagged ‘Painting’

August 18, 2011

The Blues

by Cait

Things have been hectic around here lately. A lot of working too much and coming home too tired to do a whole lot of anything in the way of projects. In spite of all that, we’re baby-stepping our way through a front porch mini-makeover this summer in an effort to improve our curb appeal and stay busy enough to keep our sanity. We already have the mailbox (a gift from Robert’s parents for my birthday), and we talked about our new door hardware and other changes we’d like to make here.

The next step in the process was to give our front porch ceiling a facelift. We’ve both been on a blue kick recently, and it’s a southern tradition to paint porch ceilings blue, so we embraced it. We started with a peach ceiling (which made the ceiling feel very low and closed-in), sporting asymmetrical trim (to hide the seams in the drywall), a HomeGoods lantern we turned into a porch light pre-blog, and far more dead bugs than I care to think about. (The photo below was taken after Robert started to pry the trim down, but there is a really old iPhone picture in this post with a true before picture.) Robert did all of the work (and took a lot of one-handed pictures),  since this took place during a period of time when I was working 58 hour weeks.

Robert pried the trim down using a razor knife & a screw driver, then added a few more screws to reinforce the drywall.

After everything was secured better he caulked the drywall seams.

Then he took down the old light and sanded the edges of the old layers of paint to help give everything a smoother, more seamless look in the end.

The first layer of spackle went up.

Followed by a lot of sanding and more spackling.

After waiting out a summer shower, he taped off the ceiling and rolled on two sample cans of  Valspar Grand Hotel Mackinac Blue (we changed our mind about the Glass Tile color after taping some paint chips to the ceiling and staring at them for a while).

Then the tape came down, and we added a new light.

All in all, it’s a cheerful addition that you can see peeking out at you when you pull up in the driveway.

I can’t wait to tackle the back porch now! Maybe we’ll wait until it cools off a little…

Edit: I saw this link on another blog (I wish I could remember which one!), and when my mom emailed it to me I thought I should add it to the post. Thanks to NPR for such a great link about blue porch ceilings.

April 14, 2011

I’m Floored

by Cait

When I made our design board for our porch, I was thinking about using pallet wood for our floor.  Then I thought about just how long with would take to yank all the boards off enough pallets to cover a 14×28 porch floor. And then I saw this post on re-nest, and now I can’t stop thinking about laying sheets of ply down and stenciling them.

from here, seen on re-nest

from here, seen on re-nest

Both the photos I’m drooling over are done on planked floors, but I could see this working on plywood floors (there is actually a geometric design in the re-nest post done on plywood).  I’m debating between the design above (which Lori so kindly provides here) and picking one or two of the Sunny’s Goodtime Paint stencils below.

stencils from sunny’s goodtime paints

On the plus side(ish), I have plenty of time to decide, because there is currently a big, hulking pool table in my way. And while pool table + friends = rocking good time, pool table + installing a new floor = nightmare. I’m thinking the best way to go about doing the porch project(s) is going to be 1. make & install barn doors (and maybe plexi windows), 2. move pool table, 3. install plywood floor and paint. 

Being the bull-headed person that I am, I want to just get a bunch of guys and a couple of dollies to move the pool table to the side, but Robert says we’re going to have the guy who moved it the first time come out and move it (By disassembling it all. Again. And paying him.)  I’m nervous about how that’s going to work out, because I don’t want some guy waiting around for me to stencil. Hopefully we can have him move it, go away for a couple of hours/days while I do the floor directly under the table, and then have him come back to move it back in place.

If you’re itching for some stencil-action, check out Emily at Merrypad! She just DIYed a stencil that she will be adding to her sunroom’s floor.

March 23, 2011

Sunrise on the Beach

by Cait

Our free sample from Valspar should be arriving today, so I thought I’d share the plan.  Since I don’t want to share full shots of the exterior of our house, I am going to be annoying and use this picture of part of the front of our house for reference.  Just ignore the untamed bushes, we have been for a year and a half. 


We hope to paint the house Valspar’s Sunrise Beach, which is a yellow slightly brighter and more saturated than the Spun Honey we used in several rooms inside.  The bricks below the windows will go white, and the shutters will either stay white or be painted a similar shade to our front door (which is Gray Teal).  Maybe Atlantic Gray?  I think we’re undecided on whether we want the planter to remain the color of the house or go white.

Front Door

What do y’all think about white shutters vs blue shutters?  Should the planter stay the same color as the house?  Also, if anyone else has curb appeal projects planned I’d love to hear about them!

January 10, 2011

All Treed Up

by Cait

Back in October I mentioned that I wanted to paint birch trees on one of the walls in our living room.  We thought it would help define the area where we have a second table (which is sort of a long story in it self) in our 20×20 living room, instead of just having a seemingly random table sort of “floating”.  The fact that there is a beam in the ceiling and down the wall (to the left of the frame in the picture below) helped convince us that it wouldn’t be too weird to paint this section.

Other Table

I found this image (below) by Google searching, and while I loved it I didn’t really want to spend what they were asking for the decals.

from Etsy

I debated about free-handing some trees using this as an inspiration picture, but we decided the best option was probably to project the image I had found and tweak it slightly.  Having used an opaque projector in high school, I began scouring eBay until I found something that would make the trees the size we wanted without being too bulky to store, and for $52 (with free shipping) I found this:

From there it wasn’t completely smooth sailing (isn’t that always the way things go?)  When the projector arrived it was filthy, the two 200watt bulbs were dead, and the cord looked like a fire hazard (apparently the rolls switch died, so they cut it our and duct taped the remaining wires together.  Yeah… about that.)  We cleaned it up, replaced the bulbs, and decided we’d try using it just this once without fixing the wire (do as we say, kids, not as we do!)  So  after painting the wall with a quart of Valspar Mountain Pass, I printed out inspiration image out 6×6 in preparation.

This photo was taken in complete darkness with no flash as we needed the room dark for the projection to show.

For one reason or another, life kept getting in the way of us actually getting this project done.  Possibly because we needed it to be dark for the projection to show, and partially from laziness holidays and family obligations getting in the way.  Eventually we sucked it up and got to tracing.

You may notice that we opted to omit the majority of the overlapping sections at the top of our inspiration picture, this was because we felt that with the width of our wall and the height our ceiling it was better to keep things a bit more simple and spaced out.  Also, we chose to keep our trees a bit more sketchy/wispy than they would have appeared if we had just gone with the decals from Etsy.  We are considering adding a pendant light over the table to further “anchor” the space (and also replacing the ceiling fan that our friend Jason keeps hitting his head on!), but that’s a post for another day.

Has anyone else ever used a projector or painted something large scale on their walls?

October 27, 2010

Is It Crazy That

by Cait

Other TableHello, slightly boring space.

Is it crazy that I want to paint the wall behind our second table in the living room and then paint white trees on it?

I’m thinking that I could probably freehand something like this fairly easily.
(image from etsy)

I’m leaning towards something like this, but with a — wait for it — grey wall (because I’m still on a grey kick).  Luckily I have a husband whose attitude towards paint is “if we hate it, we can paint over it” instead of being the kind of person who would freak out and act like I’ve ruined our house.  And he likes the idea of the grey and the trees, woohoo!

September 19, 2010

Liquored Up

by Cait

Ok, so contrary to what the title would lead you to believe we didn’t spend the day getting sloshed, we spend the day watching football and painting the liquor cabinet.  We last left off with the liquor cabinet with a DIY Fail at papering part of the inside, after picking a paint color for the inside.

So this time we started by putting down contractor paper, taking off the old “door knocker” hardware and spackling the screw holes with a tube of nail hole patch.

One football game later this is what we have.  We still have to paper the inside, do a little touch up, and get new knobs for it.  I want to get these knobs.

From World Market.

Is anyone else mildly obsessed with yellow and grey right now?

September 9, 2010

Attack of the Billion Projects!

by Cait

Ok, so we don’t actually have a billion projects going on, but I may have been a little ambitious in thinking that we could tackle both the chair and the liquor cabinet after work last night.  Especially since we’ve both been working 10+ hour days and coming home dead tired.  We did at least the chair is mostly finished and ready for its upcoming debut in the guest bedroom, even after wandering around Lowe’s having to go to Lowe’s for more paint.  We picked the darkest yellow on the swatch with Valspar Spun Honey (the room color), but because I am an excellent blogger, I forgot the name of it.  Something about sunsets.  (Quick, use your super powers and read the name on the sample can below!) 

Behold, our messy porch!  Why yes, that is gravel that some former homeowner thought was a good idea.

And now that you know that our porch is kind of a hot mess (and you haven’t even seen the mismatching and obviously not laid at the same time tiles on the floor, or the half-assed attempt at walls by the former owner!) I can leave you with this picture, which shows that for our next trick we have these lovely things sitting in our yard until we start sanding them down into end tables.  Hooray free stumps!

I’ll be back tomorrow (same bat time, same bat channel) with either the liquor cabinet progress, or more details on that lovely stack of pallets in our backyard that I showed in the last post (because that’s how we roll, stacks of unattractive things in the yard). Unless I collapse from the exhaustion of trying to juggle work, projects, and the most important task of all: taking gelato to my best friend who just had a baby.

September 7, 2010

Shoes Required: Part 2

by Cait

When I left off last time (see Part 1 here) I had picked a paint color, hardware and paper for the top of the shoe cabinet.  Over the weekend I took some Valspar Seaside Villa paint to it.  I skipped the primer step because with the age of the piece I wanted the more of the antique and little less “crisp”.  This isn’t the technique I’d use for everything but, for the most part, if you aren’t dead set on things being perfect (and nothing in our house is, it’s more well-loved and broken in) it works just fine, especially if you just use high quality paint.  If we were painting a crisp, new piece I’d prime and then either roll or use a paint sprayer to spray it.

It still needs some work but it’s getting there.

Oh and also, we have this currently sitting in our backyard.  I’ll give a cookie to whoever knows what we’re planning to do with these (and no, Emiley, it doesn’t count that we told you!)

Does anyone else have multiple projects going on at once like we do?

August 26, 2010

Budget Kitchen Redo

by Cait

A quick rundown of the “make it work” redo for our kitchen, which was about 15 kinds of scary when we first bought our house last September.


We were not loving the cheap appliances, plastic blinds, cheap faucet, cabinet hardware or contractor beige walls.  Also with counter space at a premium we needed to come up with a way to keep our microwave off the counter.  So we started by painting the walls a light green color (twice actually, once with leftover Valspar Cool Reflection from the bedroom, which was sort of a disaster because in the different lighting it was far too minty, and finally with Valspar Sea Mist Green), changing out the cabinet hardware, and got a faucet as a gift from my parents.


Then while leafing through Better Homes & Gardens Kitchen Idea File in the bargain section at Barnes and Noble we got the idea for this.

moving back in

Then we wanted a light over the sink, which actually took far more effort than it really needed to, because we didn’t discover Glo Stix right away.

kitchen light

After that we scored a cast iron sink on Craigslist for $60, which I neglected to add a picture of, and finally, we upgraded our appliances for stainless, thanks to the Sears Outlet and my parents, who gifted us the stove they bought for the house we were house sitting.


Cost Breakdown:
Paint – $24.47
Hardware – $58.81
Faucet – Gift
Sink – $60
Microwave Shelf – $24
Light – $22.37
Rug – $19.99
Dishwasher – $728
Stove – Gift

Total – $937.64

August 13, 2010

Window Seat Revamp

by Cait

Earlier I mentioned how Dottie I was finally getting around to painting our window seat.

This piece started out life as a coffee table that belonged to my grandmother’s friend.  After she passed away my grandparents used it in their house as a tv console for a while, and when we bought our house we also used it as a tv console until we rearranged the library.  Then I bought some clearance Pottery Barn chair cushions, sewed them into a long strip, and turned it into a window seat.

The dogs liked the window seat as much as I did, and because I was slow in getting a rug pad to go under the cushions, they added some of their own distressing to the top.

Initially I wanted to paint the piece Valspar Under the Sea, but with some help from Dots I decided to use a green we already had.  The actual painting was a pain in my behind because of all the trim pieces on the doors, and after briefly hitting the “I hate this project!” and “oh no, I think I picked the wrong color!” walls I didn’t stress too much, especially because I knew I wanted an antique-y look and didn’t have to get it to look perfect.  After about half an hour to an hour I was done painting, and ready to move it back inside (with a rug pad under the cushion this time, to prevent as many scratches from the dogs as possible).

What do you think?  Did I Dots pick the right color, or is there more painting in the hot Florida sun in the future?

Check back for finished details on hutch when there isn’t football to watch it isn’t too dark to take pictures!