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No Way in Yell…ow: A Dining Room Update

7 Dec

We are really close to having a completely painted/updated dining room! Yahoo. We have done A LOT of painting over the last week (more coats than any normal person should have to apply, it was my fault, but we will get to that later). Let’s start from the beginning.

Here is a look at my favorite room of the house when we moved in (read more here):

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And here is the moodboard I made about 10 months ago (the yellow on the board was not as bright on my ipad when I was creating it…so keep that in mind):

I love anything yellow and gray, so I was excited to get started on this room. First I found some fabulous green chairs at a local thrift shop and made those over with the perfect fabric (read about that here and here):


I purchased 2 Pier 1 parsons chairs for the head of the table, and made 1.5 slip covers in a coordinating fabric (I am soooo close to being done with the second one, but they are pretty time consuming to make! Read more here and here).

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I am still working on creating a plate gallery for the wall to the right in the above pic; just a few more plates and we should be good to go.

The next thing we did in the room was add wainscoting and chair rail. Can you see how the wall is painted two different colors (also in the above pic)? We think the previous owners were in the middle of adding chair rail also. Well, we finished the job and one up-ed them with the wainscoting. Here is a look at that going up:


My dad and I started it, then Kevin finished it up…


Kevin added a secret note to whoever rips the molding down one day (hopefully it will stay up forever!!)…it’s like a mini time capsule:

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After the molding went up, Kevin patched and sanded all the nail holes and we were ready to paint. The lower half of the wall, all the woodwork, and the china cabinets got a fresh coat of white paint:

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The next step is where things went south. I was convinced yellow would look nice and bright and cheery. Our kitchen is yellow (for now), and it looks okay, so I figured the dining room would also look okay. WRONG. I definitely should have gotten a sample before purchasing the most expensive Benjamin Moore paint they make (in Lemon Drop). Wowza, it was bad. I am almost embarrassed to show this, but we are all friends here, right?!

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I don’t think the photo fully represents the sunshiny-headache-ness of the Lemon Drop Yellow. I used to like Lemonhead candies when I was younger, but when you ate too many your tongue hurts…the room was kind of like that…

Before the paint went up Kevin strongly encouraged me to select a color other than yellow, but I was insistent on bringing on the lemon. My bad. Since I made the poor decision, I quickly went out and purchased this:

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Bulls Eye to the rescue! The man at Ace Hardware told me this would cover the best, and I think he may have been correct, because now the room looks something like this:

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Lots of white! To be really safe we put on two coats of the primer. I even found some ceiling paint left over from our bathroom update, so I gave the entire ceiling a fresh coat. I am happy to report that there are no roller marks on the ceiling…that was quite an accomplishment if you ask me. Does anyone else have problems painting ceilings? The first ceiling I painted (our master bedroom) seriously took me about 5-6 coats. I think I finally figured it out.

Now it was back to the drawing board to select the wall color…and as you may have guessed from the title of this post…No way in H-E-double hockey sticks will our dining room be yellow!

We decided on gray, so I picked up every gray Benjamin Moore sample they had at Ace:

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We narrowed it down to a few, and I even bought a couple samples (I was scared to paint the wall, so I painted a piece of paper instead)….

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We didn’t want it too dark, and not too light either, so we decided to go with…wait for it…wait for it…

{Image found here.}

Pigeon Gray by Benjamin Moore. Pigeons are gross, but apparently they inspire pretty paint colors!

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The paint has been purchased, and I already know it is going to be a million times better than the yellow. Here’s what we have left for the room:

  1. Paint gray
  2. Touch up white
  3. Empty china cabinets and paint inside
  4. Hang plate wall
  5. Finish slipcover for parsons chair
  6. Buy new window treatments (I would like custom white shutters)
  7. Find a small buffet and possibly a rug

So in the last week, the room got 2 coats of yellow, then 2 coats of primer, and it now needs 2 coats of gray! Six coats in one week….can anyone beat that?? For your sake, I hope not!

Please check back to see how the gray turns out. Until then, enjoy the rest of your week!

Weekend Bloggy Reading


And the Winner is…

7 Nov

Metallic Ice Blue!

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A of couple weeks ago I was testing out paints for the chain-link stencil I purchased for our half bathroom (read more here).   No one  thought I went with the first paint-Metallic Ice Blue, but I did.  Probably because I said I liked the idea of a subtle pearly color.  Kevin actually really liked the blue, and if he had not voted for that one I would have definitely gone with the pearl.   I figured I should take the risk on this one, and I love the results!


I ended up doing the largest wall in the bathroom which is just opposite the sink and mirror.


Originally I thought I might do the whole room, but that would have been almost impossible considering all the angles, and it may have been a bit overwhelming.  We didn’t want it to look like crazy wallpaper, so we ended up with one metallic accent wall.


I probably could have done the stencil in one day, but I did it over the course of two days.  After a while your arm gets a bit tired!  It was worth it though.  The bathroom was a good place to test my stenciling skills.  Now I think I am good enough to someday tackle our living room.  Has anyone stenciled anything lately?  Any plans to do so?

Here is my quick how-to on stenciling:

1.  Lay stencil out on drop cloth or newspaper (make sure you have a large surface covered because the tacky spray gets everywhere), and spray lightly with Tacky Spray.

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Here is the spray I used (not heavy duty spray adhesive, and maybe that is why it worked so well):

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2. Use a level to hang the first stencil.   Each additional stencil was based on the first, so you do not have to use the level the next time.  I started in the least noticeable corner of the room.  I suppose I could have started in the middle of the wall and worked my way out.  If you are going all the way around the room you want to make sure the seam (where the pattern may not match) is in the least noticeable corner.

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3.  Tap small amounts of paint on with spongy stencil brush-less is more, you can always add more paint!

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Here are the brushes that worked well for me:

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4.  Repeat, repeat, repeat….

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5.  You may have to go back and touch up either the wall paint or the stencil paint with a tiny brush.

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And that’s it!  Let’s take another look at the before (without the door in the way-we removed it for painting purposes) and after:

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The room still needs a few things to make it more complete: new window treatment, new storage cabinet, art and towels.   I will just add it to the never ending list!  What is next on your list?

Have a happy Monday!

Weekend Bloggy Reading

The Stencil has Arrived!

28 Oct

The other day I had a special delivery on our doorstep….the chain link stencil I purchased here.  Yahoo!  I was super excited it got here so fast.

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Last week I said I wanted to stencil our 1/2 bath…

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but I wasn’t sure what color to go with.  I decided to try out a few different acrylic paints from JoAnn’s.   I started by painting a board “Sea View” by Benjamin Moore, and I gathered my supplies.

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I read quite a few mixed reviews about using spray adhesive on the stencil, so I wanted to test the spray out also.  I bought Aleene’s Tacky Spray from JoAnn’s (with a 50% off iphone app coupon-score!) and a cheap stencil to practice with.  I went with the Tacky Spray instead of an actual spray adhesive because I thought maybe this would be less likely to remove the original paint from the wall (the major complaint from those people that said don’t use a spray).  The Tacky Spray  does say that it is permanent adhesive, but it also says that it is not for heavy duty projects.  The first time I used the little floral stencil on the practice board I loaded up the stencil with spray; this resulted in a gooey residue on the board after I removed the stencil.  I am glad I thought to try it out first!  The residue did rub off the board, but I am not sure that would have worked as well on the actual wall.  I was able to reapply the stencil a couple more times before I re-sprayed it (lightly this time).

Let’s take a look at the four paint samples on the Sea View Blue…

Up first, we have Metallic Ice Blue Folk Art Paint.

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Then we have Metallic Champagne Folk Art.

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Next is Pearl Finish Ceramcoat.

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And Lastly Sparkle Glaze Delta Ceramcoat.

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And here are all four…

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I was able to eliminate two of them right off the bat; can you guess which two?  I went back and forth about which color to use.  Kevin like one of them and I liked a different one.  It wasn’t until I tacked the actual stencil to the wall that I decided.

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Which one would you choose?  What do you think I went with?

I have only stenciled about 1/2 of the largest wall, and I hope to finish it up sooner than later.  I ran out of paint and unfortunately the JoAnn by our house only had one additional bottle (shoooot)!  Have you ever had to put a project on-hold because you couldn’t find the supplies you needed?  I ended up just ordering 5 more bottles on-line from Hobby Lobby instead of going on a wild goose chase for $2 paint!  Hopefully it arrives soon and we can get this chain linked.

I can’t wait to show off the finished room…until then, have a beautiful weekend (can you believe this is the last weekend in October!!).

Waiting for the Chain…

19 Oct

The order has been placed and now I am waiting…waiting for my Chain Link Stencil.   I have been wanting to add a stencil somewhere in our house, and I thought our half bath would be just the place.  Earlier this year we painted it Benjamin Moore Sea View Blue.  I love the color, but the room is still kind of boring.

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I had a hard time deciding which stencil to order.  Eventually I would like to put a damask stencil in our living room, so I wanted to select something different for the powder room.  I hope I like it….if I don’t Kevin already told me I have to repaint the room (he painted it blue the first time).

I haven’t decided what color to do the stencil in.  I can do something metallic like this wall that Courtney did (found via Centsational Girl):

Here is another metallic example from Project Queen (via Pinterest); I like how she used a metallic taupe:

Another option would be just using white, which would be much more graphic and bold.  This entire room from Vintage Revivals is beautiful (you should probably check it out), and the stenciled wall is so cute (found via Pinterest):

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Perhaps more of a tone on tone, like this wall (from via Pinterest), would look good:

Pinned Image

I am about 80% sure I will do the more subtle metallic option.  I am thinking about a pearly white or champagne.  I need to get a few options and try them out on a sample board.

What do you think?  Subtle or bold?  Have you stenciled anything?  Any tips for applying the stencil and painting?

Hopefully once the stencil is up I will be more motivated to find a small storage unit for this room and make a new curtain…I have been thinking about doing this for months….and months.   Is there anything you have been meaning to do forever?

Maybe I need to stop typing and start doing!  Have a great Wednesday Smile

From Pea Soup to Chocolate Mousse

21 Sep

Hello and happy Wednesday! Today we are talking peas and chocolate…no, not really…I am actually giving the most recent bathroom update. When we moved into our home about 7 months ago the main bathroom was a diluted pea soup color, and now it is a creamy brown (Benjamin Moore Spanish Brown to be exact).

{If you want to read about the original plans you can do that here, or the progress here and here}.   Take another look at the original bathroom:

"ivory and green bathroom"

Bathroom BEFORE

And now the after:

Brown Bathroom

Bathroom AFTER

The biggest obstacle in the room was the hunter green accent tile on the floor and in the shower.  My master plan was to select a shower curtain that could bring in shades of green and shades of the wall color.  I really like how the finished room turned out.  Here are a couple other views of the space:

Best shower curtain hooks. Ever.

Looking towards the door...

We need to add some storage in this corner...

I must say, I am really proud of Kevin for painting the edge along the ceiling.  That is always such a difficult task!  I usually end up with paint on the ceiling (and from the amount of pea soup paint on the ceiling, so did the previous owners).

Take a peak at another eyesore that was in the original room:

"Ivory and green bathroom"

What is with that medicine cabinet?

If you remember my post a few weeks ago, you may recall that the cabinet broke and we had to get a new one.  I purchased a cute vintage-y white cabinet from Home Depot, but I ended up returning it.  I was concerned about the white paint and chrome hinges with the ivory sink and (beautiful new) bronze faucet.   We ended up with a fabulous bronze mirror that was on clearance at Menards…$35, thank you very much!

Much better!

I really love the bathroom now.  My favorite part is probably the view from the shower.  Check this out:

Tree tops seen from the shower...yes I stood in the shower to take this!

There was definitely some strategic planning with the sky light 🙂

So here is a list of what we did:

  1. Removed old medicine cabinet and patched hole in the wall
  2. Painted (Benjamin Moore:  White woodwork and ceiling, Spanish Brown above the chair rail, and Cream Fleece below)
  3. Spray painted all the fixtures (Rust-oleum Oil Rubbed Bronze paint and primer combo)
  4. Replaced light fixture in the ceiling
  5. Switched out sink faucet and light switch/outlet covers
  6. Updated cellular shades with new white blinds

We only have a couple of things left to do:

  1. Purchase or make a storage unit for the corner (we are either thinking of an antique dresser or doing an Ikea hack job like this with bead-board that matches our bead-board…it kinda depends on how motivated Kevin is!)
  2. Add art and towels/accessories (I already bought a cute print of brown and green birds that I plan on hanging to the right of the mirror)
Are you giving any of your rooms a face lift?  What are your plans?  Our next room on the painting list is the dining room 🙂
Enjoy the rest of your week!

Weekend Bloggy Reading

Out with the Gold and in with the New

19 Sep

I have been talking about updating our bathroom (first here, then here) for a while now and it is slowly coming along.  Instead of purchasing all new fixtures we decided to try to spray paint everything first.  Why not pop for the $7 can of spray paint and see where that takes us?  Well, so far, so good!

Last month, Sherry @ Young House Love painted quite a few handles with Rust-oleum Oil Rubbed Bronze Spray Paint & Primer.

ORB Handles via Young House Love

They looked so nice when she was done!

ORB Handles via Young House Love

Sherry gives you the how-to on her post here.

Now, back to our bathroom…here is another look at the beautiful gold light fixtures:

Golden glow

Because we were only painting towel rods, hooks, and a couple of light fixtures (that really don’t get touched very much), we decided to skip all the steps (de-glossing, sanding) and start spraying (there is a good chance this will come back to haunt us, but that’s ok)!  The one $7 can of paint and primer was all we needed (and some cardboard/plastic and sticks from the yard).


I got creative by pushing sticks in the ground to hold some of the fixtures:

Thank you Mother Nature

After a few thin/even coats we had this:

Bronze Beauties

Closer View

Once they were completely dry we re-assembled the lights and hung the rods/hooks back up…

After-Oil Rubbed Bronze!

My mom thought we bought new fixtures they look so good =)   Before we painted them we thought we were going to have to purchase new shades, but it’s definitely not necessary once we got rid of the gold.

Like New!

{The color of the walls vary quite a bit in these photos}

ORB towel ring

Pretty little hooks =)

So far the paint has held up (for almost 2 weeks now), and I just love the finished product.  We’ll see how it goes.

I promise to show the rest of the room this week, so please come back to see the (almost) finished bath!

Today I am partying at:

Laboring over the Bathroom

5 Sep

Happy Labor Day to everyone!  I hope you had a nice, long, and relaxing weekend.  Kevin and I got back from fabulous Las Vegas this morning at about 1:30 AM!  I look forward to sharing our (unlucky yet wonderful) trip with you later in the week, but for now we are going to talk about what we did today, on Labor Day 2011 🙂

After a few hours of sleep we were up and ready to work on our full bathroom.  Here is what the room looked like BEFORE (taken back in June):

"ivory and green bathroom"

Bathroom BEFORE

The biggest issue we have is the hunter green tile.  We really want to rip it all out and start over, but since we don’t exactly have the money to do that right now we are just going to give it a minor face lift.  The second problem with the bathroom was the odd wood medicine cabinet.

"Ivory and green bathroom"

What is with that medicine cabinet?

We have been working on the bathroom off and on for the last few weeks.  We started with the cabinet…while trying to fix the hinge on the door it actually fell off and broke…the mirror…poor Kevin is going to have 7 years of bad luck now!

The bad luck started right away (and it certainly continued this weekend in Vegas); we had a horrible time trying to figure out what to put over the sink.  Originally we were just going to make a new door with a new mirror, but that didn’t happen.  The old cabinet is quite large, so a new recessed unit would not fit unless we patched the hole partly.  We decided to just patch the entire hole and hang a new cabinet flat on the wall.

Patch job

And here is the pretty new cabinet I bought at Home Depot:

New Cabinet

I have a couple concerns about the cabinet.  1.  I hope it doesn’t stick out too far and 2.  Is it going to look strange to have the silver hinge and latch when everything else is going to be bronze?  What do you think?  Should I take the hardware off and paint it?  Probably.  I suppose we will put it up and then decide.

After patching the hole I painted the ceiling and the woodwork last week…

Getting the edges...

Please ignore: 1.  My crazy hair-do, 2.  My paint-covered T-shirt, and 3.  My Adidas warm-up pants circa 1992 (yes, they are probably almost 20 years old).

With the ceiling and trim painted a nice bright white, we taped the top part off and were ready to paint the walls above the beadboard.  We bought the paint months ago so we had to stir it up…

Stirring paint with drill attachment...

Yes, we are painting the walls brown.  What do you think of brown walls?  I was telling some girls from work about my big plans and they were not very fond of brown paint…I don’t know…I think it looks nice sometimes!

Master Bathroom Ideas - Lighting


I came across the above photo when I was trying to figure out how our new cabinet will look above the pedestal sink.  Oddly it is very similar to the look we are going for. Our particular brown is actually a bit lighter:  Benjamin Moore Spanish Brown Paint and Primer.   We did paint all the brown portions today, but I am going to wait to show the finished room.

Here are just a few other things we did today…

  • Switched out a ceiling fixture:



  • Purchased a new faucet:

New Bronze Faucet

This faucet was a great deal; we really saved big money at Menards with this one.  It was on clearance for $59.  Yes, $59.  The cheapest wide-set faucet at Home Depot was $149.  This was definitely a great purchase!

  • Purchased new blinds:

New white blinds

  • And painted the towel bars, light fixtures, and toilet paper holder…but I will talk about that later this week 🙂
The room is almost done…thank goodness.   Here is what we have left to do:
  1. Add crown molding
  2. Paint beadboard (light tan/cream-almost the color of the toilet/sink/tiles)
  3. Touch up (neither I, nor Kevin, are good at or enjoy painting…that means we end up getting paint everywhere!)
  4. Purchase new glass shades for light fixtures
  5. Re-hang fixtures/towel bars/paper holder
  6. Hang blinds
  7. Find a cabinet or dresser for the corner
  8. Add art and accessories!
#6 & #7 may take a while, but if we can get the first few done I will be happy!  Stay tuned to see the finished room…
Check out more remodeling at: