Terribly cheesy title I know, but today’s post is all about one of my favorite new paint trends + a necessary home addition for a very busy toddler.
Lately Liv has turned into quite the independent lady. If it’s at all possible (and she can figure it out), she wants to do it herself. 90% of the time that’s a little tough, though we do try. 10% of the time it’s to accomplish basic tasks like washing of hands after a messy breakfast. This type of independence I love, most toddlers run from a wet washcloth honing in on yogurt smeared cheeks, but Liv still finds cleaning up a delight.
So I’ve been searching out a fun step stool for her bathroom. I was really hoping for something older with beautiful curved lines (more Jenny Lind – like Liv’s changing table – less modern and boxy) but when I came across this little birch stool from Ikea for $15 I couldn’t pass it up. It was begging for a fun coat of paint, too!
When Sherry and Katie announced their summer Pinterest challenge last week, I decided it was time to tackle this project and make it happen. (PS if you haven’t heard of this fun challenge I definitely recommend checking it out. If you are a procrastinator like myself and thrive on deadlines, this is a great opportunity to give yourself a deadline to tackle one crafty project you’ve had your eye on).
I’ve actually become quite enamored with the ombre trend as of late and have a few idea of else where in the house I might be able to spice things up with a bit of graduated paint colors…
And now for our much inspired ombre step stool:
I used two paint samples and a quart of white paint to mix my ombre layers.
Which left me with five variations of teal blue – from a beautiful deep peacock to a clear summer’s day sky blue.
My first layers of paint were pretty rough. I began at the top and slowly worked my way down the stool painting in loose stripes and not bothering too much with exact lines.
After some time in the sun, I went back with painter’s tape and measured out my layer heights so that each transition could result in a sharp contrasting line.
The top tier is the widest, slowly working down by 1/2″-1″ increments (roughly 5.5″ for tier 1, 4.5″ for tier 2, 3.75″ for tier 3, 3.25″ for tier 4, 3″ for tier 5) so that the stripes at the base were skinnier than the ones at the top.
It turned out just as I had hoped for! I really dig the colors.
Nana helped to distract Liv on the other side of the yard, but occasionally she’s wander up behind me and grab onto my neck. I ended up wearing paint for days and I’m still surprised she left the scene without a drop on her.
The stool is taller than I anticipated (it comes in a flat box from Ikea and I hadn’t paid close attention to the overall height) but it seems to work really well with Liv’s 18 month old reach.
I had chosen the colors right from the existing shades in the space and I love how the turquoise pops against the tiles in the shower, the blues in the artwork, the pale hand towels.
So far she dares to make it to the first step. It might get a little tricky after she figures out that she really can crawl to the top on her own.
But when it comes to hand washing she gets a little help.
Oh wow how she loves it! After the stool moved its way inside, it was all I could do to distract her from trying to wash her hands every 10 minutes.
I’m glad she loves it as much as I do!
Yay for projects that make you get to-do’s done.
Here’s a quick link to the previous Pinterest challenges that I’ve worked on. Still quite proud of that capiz chandelier, painter’s tape wallpaper and gold mercury glass. But don’t forget to head on over to Sherry’s post and Katie’s post (and Kate’s and Michelle’s! who are guest hosts) to find all kinds of crafty and fun ideas.
Tags: Accessories, Before & After, Blue, Crafty Solutions, Decorating, DIY, Home, Paint, Pinterest Challenge, Teal, Turquoise, Tutorial
Posted in Crafty Solutions, DIY, Home, Our Guest Bathroom, Renovating Adventures | 11 Comments »
In addition to the monster wall project I worked on for the Pinterest Challenge, I also wanted to attempt to tackle a few smaller pinned ideas that I’ve had my eye on. The first was a gold stenciled chevron napkin project and the second, today’s gold mercury glass makeover for a few plain glass vases I have lying around.
My inspiration came from the adorable dipped gold drinking ware that I had pinned over in my Dining Room Inspiration board (that room is getting its makeover soon):
But I modified the project a bit because I was really wanting to create more of a mercury glass effect with that neat, mottled coloring and multiple layers of paint and distressing.
I love my finished vase and I’ll probably use it for holding silverware at a dinner, straws at a party or pencils on my desk in the future. Plus flowers! Looks great in the new bathroom with my new orchid (thanks house guests for the thoughtful gift!).
I opted for a more subtle mercury finish (you could instead take big chunks out of the paint for a more distressed look that you often see in stores – and while I started with that I ended up filling in some of those holes and liking this best) because of the gold rather than the traditional mirror or silver finish.
In a nutshell, here was the process:
Now in slow motion… I began by lining a clear glass vase in painter’s tape and paper to keep the paint on the inside of the glass.
Once I had a nice, even coat of gold (I chose Rust-Oleum’s Metallic Gold) I used the above tutorial’s suggestions of blotting vinegar onto the inside of the vase to begin to distress the gold.
I learned the hard way that you don’t want to pour the vinegar in over the edges or you’ll end up with big drip marks in your gold, but you want to squeegie out the vinegar onto the surface until it beads, let sit for a minute or two, and then rub, rub rub!
As I rubbed I slowly began noticing chunks of the gold begin to fall away, creating that distressed mercury glass effect.
Word of caution: I thought I’d expedite the process (I love to find the best shortcuts) and used a piece of a wire sponge to burnish the inside of the glass for a more distressed look, but that left really scratchy results (hardy har har). Back to the paper towel I went.
When I had finished my distressing I let the vase dry for quite some time (the vinegar will repel any future coats of gold until dry), and then gave another soft spray of gold, another level of distressing and so on until I was happy with the results.
If you put a candle to it you’ll really see the visible layers and holes in the gold for a more ‘mercury’ look, but I’m really digging the subtleness of the distressing with my orchid pot as the backdrop.
The first accessory of many for the new bathroom! More on that very soon .
While I was at it, I used my new favorite spray paint to line the inside of a white ceramic vase, love that bold gold peeking out!
Tags: Accessories, Before & After, Crafty Solutions, Decorating, DIY, Gold, Home, Pinterest Challenge, Tutorial, white, Yellow
Posted in Crafty Solutions, DIY, Favorites, Home, Our Guest Bathroom, Parties & Entertaining | 7 Comments »
On Thursday I announced my hallway makeover plan and how I wanted to create a neat accent wall on the large and blank surface that greets us when we head back to the bedrooms.
I actually had a hard time nailing down just one project so I’ve got two more to share (this cool painter’s tape gold chevron cloth napkin design from yesterday and the other a surprise for later this week ).
Of the three projects, the biggest to tackle was by far the hallway.
Since taking the above photo, we’ve actually patched and painted that wall of the kitchen (on the outside of the hallway) and have added molding where you can clearly tell it’s missing. It’s a nice update, too.
The wall originally hosted two closet doors and the entire space started as a tan color, but when we built that new middle bathroom the wall came down to help with electrical and plumbing, and went back up as a solid white blank canvas.
But today? She’s not empty anymore.
I created the block print design out of painter’s tape, scissors and two contrasting colors of paint. I attempted to stick with shapes of tape that were pretty easy to assemble (in front of the TV, while on the computer, etc) so that I could whip out a whole bunch of the same shape at the same time.
My inspiration for the project developed out of this Pinterest board:
I had started with the idea that I’d wallpaper that upper section above the chair rail and then I moved on to stenciling. But after hunting for just the right pattern for a bit I decided to try something creative by making my own. Check out this project for a different sort of hand painted (and very awesome) set of walls, too.
When it came to prepping the actual wall and hallway for this project, we first patched, plastered and painted with a primer. Three of the hallway walls were painted “Feeling Blue” from the Valspar paint deck but that last accent wall was left white.
I’m really happy with the blue that we ended up using in the space. I was searching for that perfect gray/blue and this one is close to fitting the bill. It looks very grayish at certain times of the day but over all feels fresh and blue.
After painting the hallway, we measured out the bottom chalkboard portion of the wall and gave that several good coats of chalkboard paint (that little portion used up an entire quart!) until the section was a rich black.
Kevin lined the top and bottom of the black with baseboard and a chair rail painted the same white as the ceiling and trim (that we’re slowly cleaning up).
Then came the fun part!
I slowly began filling in the space with my painter’s tape shapes until the wall was completely covered. Instead of sticking to a strict pattern or design, I sort of just filled in the gaps to create a fun block print that wasn’t too overly detailed.
The design consisted of little bunches of leaves in twos or threes, a five sided round flower, a hycinth-esq flower on a curvy stem (the hardest shape to create) and then filler shapes in various sizes as needed.
When all of my taped shapes were up, I painted over the shapes with the same Feeling Blue as the rest of the hallway and let dry. The next day I began slowwwly peeling my paint off.
If I were to do this project again, I’d first paint over the wall in my same base coat of white to really help seal those edges, just like I did when painting stripes in the nursery, then I’d top that with my blue.
The first snafu that I actually ran into is that I had left the tape up for too long! And had probably taped too closely after the primer had been applied (maybe a day) because as I pulled tape I also began to pull up chunks of the paint from underneath.
Oh so devastating! To fix, I used a sanding bar to break up the rough edges of the peeled paint and then repainted in white. Thankfully this wall has a slight Spanish texture (as do all walls in our bungalow) so this last-minute fix wasn’t too noticeable.
I also found myself retracing all of the shape edges with a small angled brush and more white paint to keep from the blurry bleed lines that appeared around the edges.
A late night photo! I ended up tackling the wall section by section, first pulling up tape and then touching up with white paint before moving on to the next section.
I used a dropcloth for the big paint jobs but for my minor touch ups just relied on a straight edge raiser to pull dried paint right up off of the hardwood floors. A nifty trick!
My set backs meant that this was not an overnight project by any means, but I really love the results so I’m definitely happy I put in the time and late night motivational pep talks to get ‘er done.
I love the idea of using the space as a drop zone for bags and coats, and a comfy place to slip shoes on and off. We don’t have an entry or mudroom and an easy spot to set your purse/diaper bag on the way in is a must. This particular bench might be too big for the area but we’ll see how it goes.
I also want to make sure Liv has plenty of access to her new huge drawing board! And while she can’t scribble now (yes, I did those stick figure drawings in the ‘after’ shot *sigh/wink*) I know she’ll dig it in a few months.
I’m thinking maybe a picture wall above the chair rail? That plus the rest of the doors and trim are screaming for a fresh coat of white! I had hoped to finish the entire hallway but that just wasn’t in the cards.
What do you think? I hope you love it as much as I do! Did you participate in the challenge? Would love to know what you worked on.
PS You can check out my DIY capiz pendant from the Fall Pinterest Challange right here!
Tags: Blue, Crafty Solutions, Decorating, DIY, Home, Patterns & Color, Pinterest Challenge, Tutorial
Posted in Crafty Solutions, DIY, Favorites, Home, Our Hallway, Renovating Adventures | 32 Comments »