{Silver} Dropping In

Since we finished the sheet rock work in the kitchen, we’ve needed to paint the living room.  I procrastinated because I don’t like painting and once I started on the living room, I’d need to carry the color down the hall.  On Thursday, I picked out a paint color, Silver Drop by Behr (color matched to Glidden) and got started.  Nothing like selling a house to get your butt in gear, right?

I started by taking the pictures down and repainting the trim, just to cover any areas where the original tan color may have seeped under.

I filled about 50 nail holes at the same time.

Using Frog Tape, I taped off all the trim.  There goes a whole roll.

The boys decided to make a fort out of the rearranged furniture.

Then I started rolling.  And rolled, and rolled, and rolled.  And that’s when I remembered why I usually make Ben roll.

After doing paint related work all day, I finally finished just as Ben was getting home.  When I asked him to start peeling tape he didn’t understand.  I told him I had just finished the second coat.  He was amazed I had done it alone.

It’s lighter than I would usually go with, but I thought it might be better for resale.

The hall feels so much brighter.

I’m not going to bother hanging pictures before we move.  It’s not worth the effort.  So I’ll stare at blank walls for the next month or so.  It already feels strangely sterile.

You’ve seen our most recent painting adventure.  What is your favorite gray color?  Do you prefer light or dark colors?

I Guess That’s Why They Call it the Blues

Elton’s feeling blue.  I was feeling blue.  And now our kitchen is, too.  Yep, we’ve got color on those spackle speckled walls.  Well, I sanded the spackle before painting.  If you remember, here’s the before.

Yeah, the three-toned wall color wasn’t working for me.  So, I busted out my sanding skills to smooth out the walls.  I know, this should have been done months ago, but Ben and I both hate sheet rock work.  So we procrastinated.  The time had come though.  After sanding the walls, filling the small imperfections, and sanding again, I was ready to get started.

I prefer to paint trim first, working the paint into the crack by the wall.  Once that dries, I get started on the color.  Knowing that, I painted the trim Vermont Cream, color-matched to a Glidden satin latex paint.  Why Glidden?  Ben uses it in the apartments and loves it.  I didn’t like the work-ability (or lack of) the Behr.  Either I’m a slow painter or Behr dries especially fast.  But I also hate the durability (again, the lack of) of Wal-Mart’s paint.  Glidden seemed to bridge the gap.

Anyway, two coats of paint on the trim and about 24 hours of dry time later, I was ready for some color.

The same mis-tinted paint used in the dining room and theater room to be exact.  I bought another gallon at Wal-Mart (their paints are fine for areas with less traffic and/or use).  Rather than hauling the old can to the store, I took a picture of the label.  To say the paint gal was confused by this is an understatement.  Seriously, she was perplexed that I would do something so strange.  Finally, I explained to her what I was looking for and we got the paint mixed.

After spending an hour taping off the trim, I got painting supplies together.  Brush?  Check.  Paint tray?  Check.  Paint?  Check.  Roller and cover.  Oops.  I ran out of roller covers.  Gah!  Off to the hardware store the boys and I went.  We got the foam rollers, did our grocery shopping, and headed home.  After unpacking the groceries, I realized the covers were the right length, but the hole for the roller cage was too big.  Boo.  Luckily, I used the same color for the insides of the upper cabinets, so I searched for my used roller cover.  Found it…in the trash, still in the bag.  I cleaned the paint boogers off and used it.  Yes, I was desperate to start painting without going to the hardware store again.

I started painting, cutting in around the top of the casement.  It didn’t have to be perfect because anyone under seven feet tall wouldn’t see it.

Painting a flat wall was a breeze compared to the detailed trim.  Rosettes are the most difficult trim to paint.

Shortly after the first coat dried, I started with the second.  When I finished the second coat throughout the entire kitchen, I peeled off the tape.

Frog Tape prevented the majority of the paint seepage, but I did have a few peeling issues.  I think this was because I didn’t peel the tape off as I was painting, so it was starting to dry.

Touch ups are in my future.  Good thing I’ll have the same color out when we repaint the dining room.  I had to hold off painting the blue in the dining room because we’ve got to repaint the lower part white.

Here’s where we’re at now.  You can see we chose to paint the vent hood like the rest of the walls and door frames.  No special treatment.

Crown, casement, and door frames are white.

For better flow, I painted around the back door, too.  Now the color wraps from the stairs, around the kitchen, and into the dining room.

Now I need art to fill this blank wall.  I like what we had before, but I’d like something larger with more color.  Pinterest, here I come!

Up next, another layer of mud on the ceiling.  Then sanding, priming, and painting.  Again, we’re aware this should have been done long ago.

In addition to the ceiling, Ben has to install a few more trim pieces in the dining room, then more painting.  But we are getting another thing crossed off our list as I type this.  We took the cabinet doors to a local glass company.

Hopefully you’ll get to read and see more about that on Monday!

Have you been painting any rooms recently?  What color(s) did you choose?  Do you prefer to paint trim first?  Like Ben, do you hate sheet rock work?  Who’s excited that we’re almost done with the kitchen?  (Quickly raises hand).

Worse for Wear: Painted Rug

Wow, it’s been a while since our last Worse for Wear post.  Let’s visit the chevron rug I painted for the boys’ bedroom.  Just after I painted it in the summer of 2010, it looked like this.

Way back then, I admitted I liked the look of the rug, but not the feel of the crunchy paint.  Because of the crunchiness, I thought we’d have peeling paint and more flakes than a dandruff shampoo commercial.  Surprisingly, the painted rug has held up wonderfully.  Sure there are a few small spots, but still nothing terrible.  Like this little dot.

And this slightly larger patch where a little boy had an accident.  Ben scrubbed the rug (hence the slightly worn paint), then poured baking soda to help with the smell (thus the white circle).

If you recall, I got the rug for $13 because there was an extremely run down section.  I’m happy to report the paint is actually helping this part.

So, it’s staying in the bedroom until it’s trashed or we find a better rug.

If you’re thinking about a similar project, I can say this holds up better than anticipated.  I think the key is using a darker rug and oil-based paint.

What’s your worst rug experience?  A spill?  Wear from use?

P.S.  Ben moved into this house eight years ago today.  Two and a half years after that, we got married and I started taking over the house.  Haha.

Handmade Holidays: Clay Critters

We’ve been at it again.  Making Christmas ornaments, that is.  Jeesh, get your mind out of the gutter.  Haha.  This time, I’ve strayed away from glass balls and moved toward polymer clay.  I had one package of white clay waiting to be used.  Christmas is the perfect time, I guess.  I don’t have a real tutorial for these because I was fiddling around while watching Bones one evening.  By the way, is anyone else in love with Booth?  Anyway, I crafted an owl and a penguin.

Then, while browsing Pinterest, I saw a cute polar bear ornament.  Sadly, it had already sold and there wasn’t another like it.  I decided to make something similar.  Once I was happy with the little guy, I bent a piece of wire to make a loop and stuck it in.  Following the instructions on the package, I baked the clay for about 45 minutes.

(I’ll explain the other items soon).

After the ornaments cooled, I started the fun part, painting.  I gave the polar bear a coat of pearl white paint for a little shimmer.  And here’s the crew now:

And on the tree:

Doesn’t the penguin look like Wheezy from Toy Story 2?

{image via}

All he needs is a red bow tie.  But, the polar bear is my favorite, despite being wonky and lumpy.

Vincent and Everett love these guys, too.  They pull them off the tree to carry around.  All day.

After crafting a few critters, I moved on to feathers.  Of course, I had more Pinspiration.  I started by rolling the clay thinly on a piece of wax paper.  This was so much easier than peeling it off the table.  Then I cut a feather shape out of the clay and made a few smaller notches for texture.  To make the center support, I rolled a piece of clay into a long, thin strip.  After placing it on the feather, I smooshed it own a little and smoothed it out.

For even more texture, I drew lines with a lead-less pencil, poked a small hole near the top for hanging. To give the faux feathers a more realistic shape, I rolled pieces of aluminum foil and draped the clay over and baked along with the animals.

To finish everything off, I painted two layers of the same metallic pearl paint for extra shimma-shimma.

Total spent: $.98.  And, these are my favorites.  That wraps up all our hand-made ornaments.  How about you?  Have you been working on ornaments?

Handmade Holidays: Owls, Pine Cones, and Trees

You guys, I wish I had some good kitchen progress to share today.  But I don’t.  Told you the drawers would make the progress train come to a screeching halt.  I guess screeching halt isn’t quite correct because I have gotten both sides primed (can you say tedious, time-consuming, paint in the butt?) and I’ll work on painting this afternoon.

Just doesn’t seem post worthy now, does it?  Instead, you get to see our Christmas-ified entertainment center.  Here it is, complete with complimentary Mickey Mouse Clubhouse for your viewing pleasure.  Tangent, why is it that only Daisy has a sultry voice while the rest of the gang have annoying, high-pitched voices?

We carried the ‘Winter Wonderland’ theme from the tree over to the entertainment center, too with plenty of trees, a few feathers, and woodland critters.  See those little owls?  They’re made from toilet paper tubes.  I saw this cute idea for hanging owls on Pinterest to create our family, as owls.

The best part, they’re super easy to make and free!  Just fold the tops over, paint, then use a Sharpie marker to draw in details.  Vincent chose green for his owl and Everett requested yellow.  Done!

Randomly placed around the entertainment center you’ll see pine cones.  A few are plain, but using a little Elmer’s glue and glitter, others are covered in Christmas cheer.

Pine cones would be super easy to add to a tree, too, glittered or not.  Just wrap some green wire around the base and then around the tree branch.  Initially, this was my plan, but our tree already looked full.

Above the TP owls, we have another owl, a few feathers, and a ‘snow globe’.

Using an apothecary jar I already had, I made a snow globe.  More Epsom salt as snow, a bottle brush tree from the doll house section at HoLo, and a bird from our terrarium.

In the center, I’ve continued the silhouette ornament family tradition, this time in a fun turquoise color.  The reindeer candle holder was a dollar at Goodwill, the silver tree cost $7 at HoLo (after 50% off), and the brass owl was three bucks from a local thrift store.

For height, I wrapped a wire form from the Dollar Store in a blueish-green yarn and placed it on a small stump from our wood pile.  That thing has come in handy on several occasions.  I was going to use a styrofoam cone, but at $4.49 each, I ditched that idea.  When did styrofoam become so expensive?!? Luckily, the Dollar Store had my back with garland wrapped wire forms.

Wrapping the form was super easy, but I had to deal with the lack of a bottom.  So, I cut a circle from a pizza box and quickly wired it to the bottom.

Over to the right we have more bottle brush trees, pine cones, a 99 cent ceramic origami crane chopstick rest from World Market, and a framed reindeer silhouette.

The reindeer was super easy to make.  I made a silhouette in Photoshop, printed it on plain paper, cut it out, traced it to a sheet of glitter foam, cut that out and taped it to a sheet of card stock.  Here’s a template to make your own.

Another apothecary jar filled with sequin ball ornaments, a pine cone, and more trees, including one from Pier 1 last Christmas round out the entertainment center display.

And, our Christmas tree is finally ready for the grand reveal.

Vincent insisted on hanging his V on the bottom, even though it didn’t fit our theme.  And, here’s a glimpse of a few ornaments we’re sharing on Monday.

Like last year, we’ve hung our stockings from the plate rack.

We’ve got monograms again, too; ornaments from HoLo for $.50 each.

I planned to paint designs, but haven’t gotten around to it yet.  Maybe I’ll swap out the plain ribbon for something with more color.

We’re officially ready for Christmas.  How about you?  Are you ready?  What areas do you decorate?  Just a tree?  The mantle?  Or are you mantle-less like we are?

P.S.  We’re ready for 2012.  Are you?  Prepare with our new custom silhouette 11 inch by 14 inch wall calendar.

When 2013 rolls around, cut the silhouette design off to frame for years to come.