Friday, November 30, 2012

Lookin' sharp

One of the biggest concerns that comes along with painting accent walls and transitions between colors is that of bleeding. Obviously you will not be gushing blood, I'm talking about the bleeding that almost always occurs when you try to get a sharp line using painters tape. It doesn't matter what brand of tape you use, in order to peel neatly off the surface it is adhered to, painter's tape is made only slightly sticky so it doesn't rip off the paint underneath. This leads to a little bit of bleeding no matter how careful you are. And trying to go without the tape is only for those with surgeon-steady hands and perfect line painting skilz. That is not me.

So I was ecstatic to see a tutorial on another blog showing just how to get that sharp line I was looking for in the master bedroom where I needed to do an accent wall. Check out House of Hepworths, she has some other projects that I have used and I like a thrifty gal! (Sidenote: You know what's not fun? Searching through several Pinterest boards three times each looking for the pin that bring me to that link only to finally find it near the top of one of them. Why didn't I see it the first or second time through? Gah!) So if you go to that link, you'll know exactly what I did and see better photos of the actual process but I'll just summarize it here for you if you're too lazy to click through or don't plan to do any accent wall anytime soon and don't need the full info.

Basically you tape off your line, paint the edge/corner the color of the wall you are transitioning from. In my case that was the pink I had previously painted on the other wall. Let that dry fully and then paint your accent wall or transition. When your final coat of the second color is still wet, slowly pull your tape off and reveal the beautifully sharp line you have made. Marvel at your mad skilz and write a blog post about it just so people can see how awesome you are. It really is the little things that I get excited about.

In this photo the wall actually looks peach like I wanted originally but in person it reads a lot more pink than I had hoped. I have since apologized to the mister for painting his bedroom pink and he said "What? It's not every man's dream to sleep in a pink and purple room?" He truly doesn't care and I'm sure after the first day he has never even noticed the color again but pink and purple really aren't his jam. Oh well.

But seriously, how happy does that sharp line make you? Because I like to just stare at it for awhile here and there. I probably should have waited to take the photos until after the paint was dry but I am not known for my patience so you'll forgive the splotchy purpleness of drying paint.

Monday, November 12, 2012

Valspar Ultra review

I used Valspar Ultra paint + primer in Peach Champagne to paint over a dark tan in our bedroom and was surprised by the difference in the experience I had using the same brand of paint in Pronghorn to paint over the same color in our living room. I know that the tones in Pronghorn were a lot closer to the tan but I didn't expect it to perform so poorly with a lighter color when they specifically advertise as a paint + primer in one.

Now, this title of paint + primer is misleading because in regular decorating settings, you can use any color of paint as a primer. So instead of using a coat of primer plus two coats of color, you can use three coats of color to achieve basically the same results most of the time. The only times that you really require an actual primer are in places where mold and mildew are a concern (in which case you would want to use something such as Kilz) and where the color you are covering is very bold. You also want to use a proper primer when you have put up new drywall because the drywall will suck up regular paint like nobody's business. At my local home improvement center, they do have a paper taped to the paint counter that explains how you just use an extra coat as a primer coat but I think the choice to put paint + primer on the can is a poor one. But nobody asked me.

In the Pronghorn color, I was able to use two coats to get the coverage I was looking for and I probably could have edged two coats and rolled one if I went a little heavier with the roller. In Peach Champagne, I needed to do three heavy coats on the edging and two heavy coats on the rest to get decent coverage. I actually would have liked to roll on a third coat just to get a pure tone but I am so tired of painting already and still have at least five rooms to get to. Six if I ever decide what color to paint the hall bathroom. Maybe by the time I finish the next room I'll just be numb and won't hate it so much.

I thought maybe I was just being crabby about paint but last night I finished a wall of the peach and this morning I started a wall of Behr's Cougar and it was not crankiness, I really just prefer Behr Premium Plus in every way. It goes on smoother and thicker and I think it has the same amount of odor as the supposed low odor Valspar. We just purchased two different colors of Valspar Signature paint so I'll let you know if that is any better than the Ultra. If they aren't better, I will for sure be searching reviews for another brand that is closer to my current fave.

Oh, and you know how I was considering doing an accent wall in the master bedroom? Well, fate took it out of my hands by running out of paint on the third wall. I wasn't about to go buy more when I had over 2/3 of a gallon of the purple just sitting there so viola, accent wall.

What's your favorite line of paint? Have you found there to be a big difference between lines under the same brand name? I'm really hoping this Signature works out better.

Sunday, November 11, 2012

What's funnier than being tickled?

Being tickled pink! -Pinkalicious

I chose what I thought was an almost neutral shade of peach for our bedroom because I liked how it looked with the purple that I used in our bathroom nook. It wasn't a color I had ever imagined using in my bedroom but the two times I was in the store looking at paint chips I kept coming back to that combination so I decided to just go for it. The color is peach champagne in Valspar Ultra Paint + Primer (here's a link to their ceiling paint Valspar Brand Ultra Premium Interior Latex Ceiling Paint 27-1420 GL - Pack of 4 (Google Affiliate Ad)) and it turned out to be a very pink shade of peach. On the up side, my skin looks tan compared to my walls but since I am so pale I'm see-through it just tells you how light the color is. Because I'm used to a much darker bedroom that feels more restful, it's a little jarring to me to be surrounded by such a bright and perky color but maybe it will work out in our favor by making us feel more awake in the mornings. I am going to do one accent wall of the same purple I used in our bathroom nook just to tone down the brightness a little but I'm a little worried it will just serve to make the room look even more girly.

I need to find a way to make our bedroom seem a little more manly. I currently have our old glider chair in the bedroom and am considering recovering (or purchasing a new cover off Etsy if they exist) it in a more masculine fabric. Our bedding is all one color with no pattern but perhaps next time we replace the comforter I should also look for something mantastic. We tend to purchase a new comforter every year when they have amazing sales around Christmas time because it's cheaper than having one professionally cleaned. I've tried washing comforters in our home machines and at a laundromat where they have larger machines but they just never come out of the wash the same and the husband is so choosey about our bedding that it is so much easier to go with something inexpensive that we know we like.

How do decorate your shared spaces? I welcome any suggestions for replacing my fake orchid with something with a little more testosterone as long as I can veer more towards smoking parlour and away from neon beer signs. Whether he likes it or not, we need to stop decoration like it's our first apartment and invest in items with more class.

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Work it out

Does it matter to you if the place you exercise is pretty? I've been trying to decide if it matters to me or not but I can't find a tie breaker between liking pretty things and being too lazy to care about the corner of the garage where we keep the elliptical. This also leads me to the question of whether or not I'm going to paint the garage at all. When I build out the mudroom area I want it to be organized and functional but I'm not sure if it's necessary to go beyond that.

The garage is an area of the house that most people will never see. The reason I want to store the family shoes/coats/gloves there is because I'd love to have the space in the front entry to accommodate the items of any guests that should ever need to visit. So it should be very rare that we have guests in the garage but do we only decorate our homes for other people? I wonder how much of what we do with our own space is meant to impress and posture for those we invite to visit. I know that we've come a very long way from our homes being just a functional source of shelter but have we come too far? I wish that I could say that I decorate my home only so that I can enjoy it but that isn't the truth. I seek validation in my choices and I care way too much what others think of where I placed that decorative gourd or this bowl. Not that it makes a difference in the grand scheme of home decor who my audience is. I'm still going to enjoy pretty spaces no matter who I'm creating them to impress.

If you use it as a functional space, have you decorated your garage? Do you think it's a waste of paint to change the color of a place where you mainly just enter and exit and get stinky and sweaty? If I do paint in there, my goal will be to stay with a much more masculine pallet because my poor husband has to put up with a bedroom that turned out to be a little more pink than I pictured it.

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Temporary shoe solution

My goal is to build a fantastic mudroom wall in our garage so that we can leave all our shoes and coats and things out there as we enter the house. My goal will not be happening until I get my arse in gear and unpack the rest of the boxes that are filling my garage right now. It's an elaborate game of shuffle the boxes from one place to another so that eventually I can assemble the awesome tote storage shelf my dad built for us. Once the shelf is assembled then I can figure out which totes go on the shelf and which go into the attic.

Sidenote: I've never had attic storage and wonder how worried I need to be about bugs and such. Do I need to super tape every tote or should they be fine? I'm planning to put holiday things up there so I only have to haul one or two up and down at a time but I just don't like bugs in my things.

So while my garage is a giant disaster and nobody is parking in there or storing their beloved shoes in there, I needed a temporary way to mitigate the shoesplosion that was happening in our entryway.
This was the very cheapest and easiest way to keep the pile by our front door from getting out of control. I just went to Dollar Tree (I love them because everything really is $1, not like other pretend dollar stores. Why call yourself a dollar store when things are $3.75?) and picked up six of these little baskets. They had them in several colors but I like the muted tones of the plum and green and the plum reminds me of our living room walls in the old house. You only see four here because I stuffed my two in the entry closet and they don't even begin to hold my shoe collection. But these baskets are a great size for my husband and kids' shoes. Although baby W (do you read that 'dubya' because that's how I say it in my head) seems to have about seven pairs of shoes too many. Having three girls sometimes leaves you with way too many of something in a particular size.

Do you buy more storage as your shoe collection grows or are you actually able to get rid of shoes now and then? I'm trying to be more realistic about purses but I just can't stop loving shoes. When we sell our old house I am celebrating with a pair of boots that I've had my eye on for months now.