Home Improvement, Paint

Chevron Accent Wall

Last night I was beyond hyper and spontaneously decided to tackle my faux backsplash/accent wall in my laundry room. I think my spontaneity was key in the project, otherwise I would have over thought everything from the design to the colors.

I have seen so many designs online lately for accent walls: quatrefoil, shell, stripes, chevron… you name it, it’s been done. In my cracked out state, I went with a segmented chevron pattern and I LOVE IT. Also, it was way easy. Way.

I was too into groovin’ to my sweet tunes last night to take a ton of photos (imagine a quality mix of Bohemian rhapsody, Baby got back and Beloved)  but here’s the gist of what I did: I wanted the wall color to show through my pattern so it tied the accent wall into the rest of the space, so using 1″ tape I taped vertical stripes on my wall with no intention of filling them in. I spaced my lines out using a small level as my measurement. Honestly, I did this to avoid doing math. It’s about 9″ wide and was a perfect spacer. It also doubled as a level — go figure. I made sure my lines were pretty darn straight. They weren’t perfect, but they were mostly straight.

Then, I started to create my chevron pattern. I grabbed a pen and started marking my tape where other pieces of tape needed to intersect. Again, I used my level as a spacer. I placed it at the top of my cabinet and marked at the bottom, continuing until it wouldn’t fit anymore. I did this for all of the tape, then connected the dots.

Here’s a fun tip — if and when you run out of your painter’s tape, and if you just so happen to have masking tape or washi tape in the same width, you can use it as a substitute for painter’s tape. Yes, this happened. I was sad to paint over my mint tape, but didn’t want to lost my awesome energy and stamina with the project so I made the sacrifice.

{A Smith of All Trades} Chevron wall taped up

With my pattern taped and ready to paint, I started to apply my paint colors: metallic gold (Thanks, Martha!) and ivory/manilla. I originally was going to do something with bolder pops of color, but went for the metallic paint as my bold choice. I also was going to add a third color, but my pattern only took up so much room and the third color probably wouldn’t have added anything to it.

{A Smith of All Trades} Chevron wall taped up and painted

I painted two coats of each color onto the stripes before removing all of the tape.

*Drumroll*

{A Smith of All Trades} Chevron wall

Love love love love love love love. Love. Had I thought this project out more, I probably would have gone with a mint or teal chevron stripe, but I am so glad I didn’t. I think the gold tones play off the countertop wonderfully, and make the gray cabinets pop even more.

I started this project after dinner at 5:30(ish) and was cleaning up at 7:30 p.m. — not to bad for the fabulous result!

BEFORE:

{A Smith of All Trades} Laundry Room

AFTER:{A Smith of All Trades} Chevron wall again

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Home Improvement, Paint

Laundry Room Cabinet Reveal

Well, spring break is coming to an end and what do I have to show for myself? We have a purdy lookin’ laundry room!

I started this project last Sunday with this beauty of a laundry room.

{A Smith of All Trades} Laundry Room Before

We are pretty sure when Fannie Mae got a hold of our home that these cabinets were in our kitchen and they plopped them into the basement instead of tossing them to the curb when they replaced them. Your guess is as good as ours, but it doesn’t seem too far-fetched.

Anyway, no matter how you slice it, they are ugly. And dirty. Ga-ross. What you might not be able to tell from the photo is that the countertop was in pretty bad shape, too. It is caved in the middle from who knows what and is chipping at the edges. It’s also just dirty and gross as well.

So, for on the cheap, I devoted the majority of my break to beautifying this space.

First, the doors all had to go.

{A Smith of All Trades} Laundry Room No Doors

Once I had all of the doors off to the side, I started to paint the base of my cabinet with Kilz primer. I lightly scuffed the base with sand paper first. Since there are no cabinet doors for the cabinets on the upper left side (the vent make it impossible for any doors to actually open), I painted the inside and underneath with primer as well. Two coats later and the whole thing was already looking better.

That where I stopped on day one or two (can’t remember which now).

{A Smith of All Trades} Laundry Room Primer

 

Here’s a helpful tip if your project goes on for a while and you don’t want to clean your brushes — if you wrap your paint brush and/or roller in a wet paper towel and saran wrap, then put it someplace cold, you can pick up right where you left off the day before with a moist brush! Awesome, huh?

{A Smith of All Trades} Paint in Fridge tip

 

Next up, charcoal gray paint for the cabinet bases. I got this gallon of paint a few months ago from the leftover paint section — I think I paid $6! Score.

I painted two to three coats on each set of cabinets — if you do this, make sure you buy a cabinet roller! They are made of foam and won’t leave little hairs all over your cabinets and doors. I learned that the hard way.

{A Smith of All Trades} Laundry Room Paint

Once my bases were painted, I started on the doors. I think they came into the picture on day three. I did the same process: scuff, prime, paint.

The last thing I did was put two coats of polycrylic onto all of the painted areas. In theory, this should help the paint from pulling up. I have my doubts, as I’ve already knicked one area. The unfortunate part about this project is at the end of the day, I painted over laminate. I don’t know how well it will hold up in the long run, but I’ll just have some gray paint near by for necessary touch ups. Anyway, polycrylic should help a little.

Once everything was dry, I added knobs and rehung the cabinets doors. I also put vinyl dots underneath each door so the painted sides won’t stick together and pull one another up. That and they make closing the doors a lot quieter!

{A Smith of All Trades} Laundry Room Hardware

I think we’re onto day four here — countertop day! If you look closely at the photo above, you’ll see two painted 2×3 blocks under the center of the cabinets. I wedged these underneath so the cabinet would have more support and the top would be more level. We also laid a thin sheet of wood and a few shims under the cabinet (after installing it once and not being able to open either drawer) to raise it up to a proper height.

In case you are wondering, the countertop came from my parents’ laundry room — when they did their recent remodel, I asked them to set it aside for us because it happened to be the exact same length as ours. How perfect is that!?

Tadaaaa!

{A Smith of All Trades} Laundry Room

 

And for the full reveal….
{A Smith of All Trades} Laundry Room

and again….

{A Smith of All Trades} Laundry Room

Even if the paint does chip over time, this looks a heck of a lot better than before! And even though he hates when I an knee-deep in paint and rooms are a hot mess, I  know the hubby thinks our laundry room is way more bangin’ now.

{A Smith of All Trades} Laundry Room Before and After

Project cost:

  • $6 – 1 gallon gray paint (I still have 3/4 of the can left, too!)
  • $8- pack of cabinet rollers
  • $2- small roller paint tray
  • $0- new countertop
  • $20- 10 knobs (contractor pack)
  • $17- polycrylic (I still have 3/4 of the can left of this as well!)
  • $3- vinyl cabinet stoppers

Total: $56 — not too bad!

Next up — a faux backsplash. I just need to decide what pattern I want to do!

Thanks for stopping by today!

-Jess

Home Improvement, Paint

The itch to paint

Right before the Christmas holiday we had a radon mitigation system installed in our basement. Turns out Columbia has a lot of this cancer-causing gas just hanging around. Lame-o. Basically how it works is the radon guys come and drill into your foundation (we have two) and create a well for the gas to collect. Since gas takes the path of least resistance, the gas will pretty much all pool here instead of seeping into our house in other ways. Then they install a pipe that connects the hole in the foundation(s) to a hole they cut to the outside of your house. They seal it up nice and tight so no gas can eek out, then put in a fan that runs 24/7 to keep the gas flowing outside of the house. And with that, we are radon free! Woot!

The whole thing took about two hours. Not too bad!

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Gee, I sound so knowledgeable about radon.

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I was really happy to have this completed because our radon levels were a little bit higher than normal and I’d like to avoid cancer if at all possible. Crazy, I know. I was also happy to have it done because it inspired me to paint our laundry room/basement area! I bet you thought there was nothing left to paint… that’s what the hubby thought, too.

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There was nothing wrong with the color of our laundry room as it was.

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A boring neutral was just fine for the space. But I spend a fair amount of time down there, especially at those cabinets in the back. The cabinets in my craft room are a great sitting height, but the cabinets in the laundry room are great for projects you want to do standing. I wanted to brighten up the space a bit.

I set out to paint the whole space white. Yes, white. I never want to paint anything even close to white, but I didn’t want another blue room and I didn’t want to paint the space anything crazy. So white it is.

I went with Behr’s Waterfall Mist. It was a nice contrast between the white of our door frames, so that was a win.

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Well, it turns out Waterfall Mist is blue. Even though I tried to paint my laundry room white, I ended up painting it blue! I think there is something wrong with me.

Look…. even in the Behr virtual paint chip wall, Waterfall Mist is categorized as white.

Screen Shot 2013-01-08 at 11.24.54 AM

But it’s not. *Sigh*

So I painted the whole room and stood back to admire my work… then realized I had inadvertently painted another room in the house blue. Oops.

At least it’s brighter!! And I love blue…

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The other mistake I made, aside from painting it a completely wrong color, was I painted our stairs (which were orange before) the same color as the walls. That just looked weird. Really weird.

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So the day after Christmas I ran to the store to pick out some dark brown paint to match the floor you can see peeking in from under the door.

IMG_2520Ahhhh…. much better.

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All in all, the basement looks nice. It’s not some crazy huge improvement to what it was before, and let’s keep it real, I’ll probably want to paint it again in the future. At least for now it satisfied my itch to paint something. Now I just need to make some cutesy decorations for the laundry room and I can let it be for a while.

Maybe.