Showing posts with label painting. Show all posts
Showing posts with label painting. Show all posts

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Because it was raining

I decided to paint the basement stairwell, as part of my "little things" resolution. This is the last area of the house to be painted, except for the laundry room, which is unfinished cinderblock. I don't want to paint the laundry room because, ugh, what a pain in the butt. Also: spiders.

If we are being honest I will probably paint it at some point because, ugh, I'm compulsive like that.

The walls were a shiny off-white and they were filthy from dragging the old furnace out, moving furniture in and out, and all of the work we've done in the crawlspaces. There's cheap fake wood paneling at the base of the stairs that looks terrible. The carpet is going to come out, maybe this winter, which is why I wasn't very careful with drop cloths.

High five!

Right before I started painting

If I was smart I would have painted the walls the color of dirty hand smudges (maybe Sherwin Williams' You Have Sons, Your Bathroom Will Never Be Clean Again) but I didn't want to spend a lot of money on this project, so I bought a gallon of heavy duty primer and used the gallon of Benjamin Moore's Whirlpool I had leftover from painting the alcoves . BM paint costs more than my car, so I wanted to use it up. We're going to get it all dirty again in a second but for right now it looks bright and light. I asked Greg the other night if he put a stronger bulb in the light fixture and he thought I was fishing for a compliment on the paint.

It's not white, I swear. It's a very pale blue.

It's noticeably brighter coming down the stairs now. I used leftover white paint on the wood paneling but I might change that later, if it gets grimy quickly. In low-light situations I've heard you're supposed to use saturated paint colors. This one definitely doesn't qualify and it's difficult to photograph well. Stupid designers and their rules of thumb.

We hung the signed poster the Portlandia crew sent us as a thank you for volunteering our house. We have a lot of extra art floating around the house and I think I'm going to hang it in here. Because once you've made your basement stairwell light and bright the next logical step is to crowd it with artwork so you feel claustrophobic when fetching your laundry.

I also have to finish scraping the peeling latex paint that the previous owner applied to the oil-based paint on the door trim. Then prime, then paint in a bright white that we can immediately get dirty. Circle of life and all that.

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Hoo ha cherry soda!

I am the Ron Paul of home improvement. My plan makes no sense, everything is backward, but I'm having a good time and people seem content to let me keep on with it because it's mildly entertaining. But I don't send out racist newsletters, so at least I've got that going for me.

I've been painting this alcove for two months. Painting with this color (Benjamin Moore Whirlpool) is a pain in the ass because it essentially goes on white. I don't use painters tape because I can usually cut in with a pretty straight line with a brush. But this color makes it very difficult to see where the white trim ends and your color begins. So there's been a lot of repainting around the trim. And then after I painted it I decided to patch some of the holes. And then I had to repaint those spots.

Then I filled the gaps where the door hinges used to be and primed and painted those sections. Then I slapped a coat of paint on the trim. Then I decided that I should put wood filler on the thousands of dents and holes covering this poor doorway. And THEN I primed it. And painted it. Again. What's wrong with me and why am I at this debate?

I'm sick of having a purple bathroom (it was supposed to be gray) and I've been hunting for the perfect color for three years. With our new gray-with-a-purple undertone house paint I thought, "Aha! I can just lighten up our exterior color and have it put in an interior paint base!"

I had them mix up a 25% mix of our house color and then decided to put it here in the bathroom. Because touching up TWO colors is the best.

Our house color has a blue undertone, not purple. I know this now.

I'm pretty sure the white alcove was painted with Killz primer, something I don't have on hand. You guys, don't do this.

Hoo ha! Cherry soda!

Have you watched the Bad Lip Reading videos already? They (along with that cat from Japan who jumps out of boxes) are some of my favorite things that the Internet ever created.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Painting! So much painting!

Sometimes I like painting swatches better than I like painting entire rooms or walls. But then sometimes I paint too many swatches in random places and our house starts to look like an outward manifestation of my mind and it. is. not. pretty. So I have to repaint. All of this is to say, I painted the hallway!

The original yellow, which wasn't so buttery looking IRL.

Because I am a terrible girlfriend, I removed the one paint color that Greg really likes in the house: the yellow in the hallway. (I know you're thinking it looks pretty but it was a high-sheen paint that made me feel queasy in artificial light.) When asked why I would want to repaint it, I told him, "It doesn't fit with our color story."

"I don't even know what that means."
"Just trust me."
"I like the yellow."
"I hate it. It's too shiny, too matchy with the bathroom floor."
"How about orange?"
"With a pink, yellow, and purple bathroom adjacent? No way. Any other requests?"
"Go to hell."

See? Terrible girlfriend! Instead I chose the same off-white from the kitchen. It's clean, it's neutral, and we can easily paint over it later when we find a color we both like. It we're being honest, it barely looks different but it makes me happy. It helps that I painted with an eggshell finish.

I saw a very pale blue (Benjamin Moore Whirlpool) on Making It Lovely that I wanted to use in the alcove between the kitchen and the hallway. I'm still on the fence about it--I think it makes the floor tiles look yellow. The upshot was that we realized how much more light reflected in this space with a lighter paint on the wall. It could have a little to do with the fact that we finally washed our kitchen windows, but I think the paint is helping. Before it was a french blue color that was actually very pretty.


In certain lights this color reads white but in the bright morning sunlight that streams through the kitchen window it's a very pale blue. I picked it up from Kaleidoscope Paint and I think I paid more for my first car than I did for this paint. It's low VOC but, shitballs, was it ever expensive. I'm not sure it was worth it. The trim paint I used was Benjamin Moore Aura (Snowfall White with a satin finish) and I would sell my first born for this stuff. It's dreamy to paint with. I want to bathe in it (not really. but sorta.). I'll definitely use it again.

And then we're going to put in some baseboard. Really.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Little things: the kitchen window

I painted the kitchen well over two years ago but I never finished painting around the window. I wanted to do a thin stripe of orange or some other funky color . . . but I couldn't find the right shade. So I ignored it and we endured this view for two years.

It didn't help that a former owner had sloppily glopped paint on the outside of the windows, obscuring the view inside.

I finally just said, "fuck it," painted the inside white and the outside trim with the color from the basement and called it good. Greg took it to the next level by scraping the outside paint from the windows and Windexing the glass.

Oh my god, it's like looking outdoors in HD, you guys. The amount of extra light that comes in to the kitchen now is staggering. We were both conflicted about cleaning the windows because we don't want birds flying into them, but then we realized that we have a bird feeder that has yet to be visited by a single bird and that we're probably okay. I have tried so hard to be the crazy lady with all the bird feeders but the birds aren't playing along.

Next up: replacing that awful light fixture (the installers did something VERY weird with the wiring or this would be done already), escutcheons on the faucet, and repainting the kitchen door. And maybe washing the rest of our windows.

Saturday, December 31, 2011

2012 is going to be the year of little things

When I was looking for a house to buy my friends were knee deep in renovating their entire house. I was taking a tour of their kitchen remodel and my friend showed me how, three months later, they still hadn't glued on the countertop backsplash. He told me, "This would take me an hour tops but it's these little things that never get done when you own a fixer."

I swore I'd be different.

And yet, here I am, two years after I patched that mystery hole in the ceiling of my kitchen and I still haven't textured that spot or repainted the kitchen ceiling. My hallway vestibules still haven't been painted, even though it would probably take an hour to complete. My kitchen window sits unpainted, with forty different test colors ringing it. There a small hole in the baseboard of the bedroom that needs to be filled.

So this year I'm going to focus on the little things. I'm going to hang curtains. I'm going to look into toe boards (we have none in the house). I'm going to finally paint the kitchen door and the kitchen window and that spot above the door that never got painted for reasons I no longer remember.

And we have a couple of big things coming down the pike: we're going to replace the front picture window that is rotting and get the house painted. And I'm going to start landscaping the front yard, including another rain garden. I'm really excited.

Happy new year!

Thursday, February 17, 2011

I have closet envy

Despite the fact that I'm a fairly techie person, I still greatly prefer paper and pen for my to-do lists. My very favorite is the back of an envelope. My purse is full of crumpled, discolored sticky notes that say things like "paint trim!" and "harissa?" They are like tiny time capsules of what I was cooking and what I was working on in the house at that moment in time.

Last winter, when I was so burned out on home repair, my to-do list said only "One Tree Hill" and "cookies." It was glorious.

I recently found one of my to-do lists from that first summer in the house. On that list was "paint front hall closet." I never did get around to that and I figure I should do it before the boy moves in (he actually owns things like raincoats and umbrellas). I painted it a crisp white because it's a dark closet and white would look good, right?

Then I saw what Sara over at Russet Street Reno did with her closet:

HOT DAMN. I went white swan when I should have gone black. And now I sort of want to paint the closet again. How beautiful is that?