Friday, May 31, 2013

BIG Painting Project...Coming Up!

Well, I have 3 gallons of paint and a 16 foot ladder scheduled for rent next week for a LARGE painting project.  My mom has convinced me that there is no time like the present to update the wall paint in our foyer, vaulted living room, and kitchen.  Yikes.  The paint isn't in awful condition, but it has been touched up over the years, and those touch-ups were not exactly the same finish, so it looks a bit dingy and dated.  Having painted her own vaulted living room in the past, she has also convinced me that we can do it together without the help of a professional painter.  Double yikes.

Here are our befores...


Quite possibly the WORST part of the job...painting above the stairwell???

You can see the kitchen in the background here...

It's going to be a beast of a painting project, but if all goes well, we will only have invested money in 3 gallons of paint (that I scored on sale at Sherwin Williams) and a ladder rental (which will only cost us 30 bucks if we return the same day).  Oh, and did I mention it will cost us A LOT of sweat and back aches?  

Currently, the paint is a greeny-tan, and we are taking it to a true gray.  The color is Intellectual Gray, which is a step down on the color card from Amazing Gray (which we used in the first guest bedroom we painted).  I think it is really going to transform the house to update to a gray.  It's a soft, soothing color, and I'm hoping it will go a long way to neutralize some of the various wood tones contained on the first floor in the kitchen cabinets, flooring, bamboo shades on the windows, furniture, etc.

We are starting Monday--stay tuned!

Thursday, May 30, 2013

Guest Bedroom Curtains...

Are you sick of this guest bedroom yet?  Totally understand.  Last post--promise.

Andy willingly hung the curtains last night (my purple thumb from multiple needle stabbings while hemming helped to encourage him too) for me.  He truly is the mastermind behind the installation (and the math required for it).  I just hang in the background and say things like, "Yep, that looks good there."  Thankful to have him around!  Here we go...

The curtains hail from our previous master bedroom in the last house.  I only used two of the three panels (clearly) and hemmed them about 5 inches.  My mom showed me how to hem in a way that will make it possible to lengthen them again if needed.  You never know...

So in this room, we have invested a gallon of paint (and supplies to correct drywall issues) and a curtain rod/rings.  Not bad at all!

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Guest Bedroom Accessorizing

So, I still don't have the curtains ready to hang...sewing is a bit of a challenge for me, but hopefully I'll get that done this afternoon.  Hopefully.

However, I did get a couple of things up on the walls in the second guest bedroom (with the help of my mathematically-minded hubbo) that I thought I could share.  

Although I hadn't planned on it initially, we added the same four frames that were previously over our bed in our last home over the guest bed.  The bed is very petite, so the frames helped to add some height to the wall.  This is where Andy came in--he knows how to hang collages with the best of them!

I hung this round mirror over the smaller IKEA dresser we've had for a while now.  NOTHING in this room is new, friends!  Shopping in my own stash, I am.

When we manage to get the curtains hung, we will have a second completed guest bedroom.  I am liking the progress so far!

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Guest Bedroom #2 Paint...DONE

Here is a quick reminder of where we started with this room...

After the room was de-stickered/de-starred, I had a lot of drywall repair to do.  We also had a hole in the wall (hidden by the bed) that needed to be patched.  Now we all know why I put off painting this room!

A Home Depot employee suggested I use this kit for repairing the hole in the wall (which you can see below).  The kit comes with everything you need--mesh patch, spackle, putty knife, and sandpaper.  Since I was new to repairing holes, I figured this was my best bet.  I would highly recommend it!

The hole...

The patch over the hole...

The process of spackling.  Many other places around the room also required spackle.  Then came the process of sanding all of the previously spackled spots, as well as places that had previously been adorned with stickers.  After I sanded (and cleaned up all of the dust), I went over all of my repaired spots with a bit of primer.  I wanted to be extra sure that I wouldn't have issues with my paint sticking.

FINALLY, I began the process of painting.  Andy even joined in the fun to roll the walls (huge help!). We went with Sherwin Williams' Ecru on the walls (a color I had picked out from the bedding) in their Cashmere paint (my fave).  The color actually has a bit of a greenish tint to it, but it is hard to tell in the picture.  The color depth is the same as the other guest bedroom I recently painted, which I liked.  That way they both have a similar feel.

I cannot even begin to express how clean this room feels now.   Like we shaved years off of it.

I am in the process of hemming the second curtain panel for this room, so hopefully Andy and I will get those hung tonight.  I am also working on a collage of some sort for over the bed (using frames that I already have) to heighten the squatty bed on this wall.

We also need to hang this mirror over the dresser.  Hopefully completed pictures to come!

On a completely different note, I spotted a pair of lamps this week in town that I just had to have for our foyer table.  I love the look of the lamps paired with the mirror.  Andy was not excited to see 2 new lamps grace our home, but they are really cute, right?

Friday, May 24, 2013

Guest Bedroom Curtains...

I am ready to call the first guest bedroom DONE.  Or at least as done as I care to make it.  We have much bigger plans to update rooms this summer that are actually seen on a daily basis (as opposed to an upstairs bedroom), so I'm not going overboard in the rooms upstairs.  I'd like them to look nice and comfortable for guests, but I'm not really into overdecorating a space that is rarely used by the three of us that call this house home.

Here we go...

So every bit of the room is the same as it was in this post (other than the curtains).

I really like how the different fabrics play off of each other (and the way that the colors are repeated in the painting above the bed and in the lamps on the dresser).

Here is a close-up shot of the fabric for the curtains.  It is that same Dwell Studio bird fabric that I love, but in a rich, cobalt-ish blue.  Doesn't it just pop on the soft gray walls?

I'm also really glad we went with the larger white IKEA Hemnes dresser this time.  It balances the size of the bed really well, and it lightens the room.

As you can see, we don't have any nightstands in here, but with the larger dresser holding two lamps, I'm kind of okay with that.  Sometimes I tend to make rooms too busy when I add in smaller furniture.  It makes the room feel more open and spacious without all of the little furniture.

A close-up of the rod.  I'm slowly trying to buy into metal rods.  Lowes and Home Depot are slowly discontinuing all of the black wooden rods I used to buy, so they forced my hand.  I have to say, they are cheaper!

A better shot of the bedding and artwork.  I found the white chevron coverlet at TJ Maxx and my mom made the pillows and the throw.

So there you have it.  Our third completed room!  Between this room, the dining room, and the screened porch, we are really making progress-ha!  One day at a time, right?

Just for fun, I thought I'd show you the view from this guest bedroom out into the landing.  We moved the zebra painting up here (love how it fills up this wall).  He's big and bold, but I love him.

So, from here I am moving into the recently de-stickered guest bedroom (you can see the doorway to this room to the right of the zebra).  I have some wall-patching, priming, and painting to do, as well as some curtain hemming/hanging to share.  After that room is completed, I really am calling it quits upstairs--promise.  Updates to come!

Thursday, May 23, 2013

The oldest craft in the book...

I made something that everyone has likely seen or made before.  But that's okay.  It was a man-friendly craft, so I thought I would share it.  I made this a couple of months ago when it was actually cold outside, in case you were wondering.

My mom and I found an Alabama fleece on sale while fabric shopping one day.  As soon as we spotted it, I knew I should do something with it.  I decided to make one of those hand-knotted fleece blankets (typically referred to as tie blankets).  My mom had made me one several years ago, so I thought Andy needed one of his own.  The other kicker?  You don't actually have to know how to sew!

The Bama fleece was a bit pricey, so I decided to back the blanket in a solid black fleece (as you can see in the picture).

First, I cut off the extra white border that came along one edge of the Bama fleece, and I trimmed the black fleece to match the length and width.  I laid them on top of each other (with the sides I wanted to show facing out).  I also pinned around the blanket to keep the pieces from sliding around too much.

Then I cut a 3 in. square out of cardboard I had around the house.  

I used this to cut squares out of each corner of the blanket.

All of the corners are cut off...

Then I proceeded to cut strips approximately 3/4-1 inch wide, one after another.  I cut up toward the middle of the blanket maybe a scissors length (around the same length as the square cut out on the end).  You cut these tabs all around the entire blanket.  When I finished the cuts, I began tying the two tabs (including the Bama fleece/black fleece) in knots all around the blanket.  I double knotted them, but not too tightly (the blanket will start to bunch up on you if it's too tight).  This part I found to be very mind-numbing and slightly therapeutic. :)

And in no time at all, I had a throw blanket for the hubs.

Just look at how happy he is.  

As you can see, it could have been a little longer, but it's more of a lap blanket and that works for him.  Clearly.  He's fake sleeping like a champ!

So there you have it.  The easiest way to make a blanket for someone special!

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Gold Framed Chalkboard

I'm sure you don't remember this, but I purchased a green framed chalkboard a while back at the flea market in Nashville.  I always had planned to paint the frame, but it never quite happened.  At first, I thought I would go for a color (maybe red or yellow), but the more I spotted gold framed chalkboards, the more I thought that was what I needed to do.  After reading this post, I decided this was definitely the look I wanted and I needed to get it done.  

Here is the chalkboard that I started with...

I used a combination of Rub'n Buff and spray paint...

Mostly spray paint for the all-over color, and then I used the Rub'n Buff to age it a bit.

Here is the finished product!

Only wished I had done it sooner.

A close-up so that you can see some of the "aging" that I added.  It doesn't look quite so severe in real life--I hate how the camera flashes things out!

All in all, a cheap, fairly quick fix.  I like it!

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Painting the Interior Panel of a Front Door...AGAIN

Hello All!

I know, I know.  It's been a while.  Things have been busy, busy around here closing out another school year.  So glad that summer has finally arrived!  I wasted so much of my summer last year worrying about whether or not Andy would get hired for the position here in GA, finding out he did get the job and scrambling to move, and a lot of other worrying thrown in there about saying goodbye to family and friends, finding a teaching job, etc..  This summer my plan is to relax, get my brain back in gear for teaching in the upper grades again (4th grade to be exact!), and to fix up some things around the house that moving over a weekend in January (and going right back to school) didn't allow me time for.

One of the things I wanted to tackle early on was actually something I had done in our last house (one of the few things I was able to do in only a year living there!).  I decided to paint the interior side of our front door.  Luckily, enough time had passed for me to forget how awful this project really is--but I stuck through it and got it done.

The door that I started with...

I sanded the door down all over (to hopefully help the paint to adhere better).  I was also afraid I was working with oil-based paint on the door (which I was), so the sanding step was intended to help with that.

Then came the awesomely fun job of taping off each pane.

This is the paint that I used.  It's supposed to hold up well on doors, and I was told it would adhere better (in case I was working with oil-based paint--which I was).  I am mentioning the oil-based paint again because this project was nearly impossible because my paint was not sticking well.  It was streaking, and I would brush on a second coat on only to have the first coat come back off in places.  The sections of the door that I sanded well (the flat panels) took the paint MUCH better than the little places between the panes (I had not sanded so well there).  After many more coats than I care to remember, and a day or two between coats to dry, it's done.

The color is Urbane Bronze by Sherwin Williams.  Although it looks black in the pictures, it is more of a deep gunmetal gray.  The following pictures are the washed out, flashed out pictures so that you can see the door better.  Hand up if you still need to learn how to use your camera!

Well, I can say that although very frustrating to complete, this project instantly made the house feel more like home.  I'd like to eventually do the same paint job to the two sets of french doors off of the back of the house (and maybe the door to the garage while I'm at it), but again, I will need to wait long enough to forget how not-fun this project really is!