Category Archives: Paint

How the List for June Went

I’m a slacker.  I did exactly what I wanted in June and got very little accomplished. And I all but forgot about my to-do list. Everything on the list is something I must personally:

  • do or
  • pay for or
  • oversee.

I made a few accomplishments not on the list like:

The list I was actually supposed to accomplish follows:

  • Paint and set up potager fence – Between the rain and the heat I have hardly stepped outside.

    The fence at the entrance to the potager needs one more section.

    The fence at the entrance to the potager needs one more section.

  • Buy wallpaper or fabric for dining room

    The new dining room wallpaper.

    The new dining room wallpaper.

  • Paint dining room paneling –  Put on back burner until the new wallpaper is in place.

    The dining room is set up for wallpapering then the paneling can be painted white.

    The dining room is set up for wallpapering then the paneling can be painted white.

  • Paint TV trays

    Metallic charcoal dries to an enamel-like sheen.

    Metallic charcoal dries to an enamel-like sheen.

  • Prime and paint linen closet – On the next clear day I’ll set up the paint sprayer and git ‘er done now that the paint is mixed.

    The top section has been installed now I need to paint the bottom.

    The top section has been installed now I need to paint the bottom.

  • Mix paint for linen closet – I chose a Benjamin Moore swatch called “Secret” and mixed a close match with surplus paint in a semi-gloss finish.

    I mixed a half gallon of grey paint for the bedroom bookshelves and linen closet.

    I mixed a half gallon of grey paint for the bedroom bookshelves and linen closet.

  • Arrange bedroom furniture

    The old dresser is ready for our new bedroom.

    The old dresser is ready for our new bedroom.

  • Hang pictures in upstairs hall

    Another gallery wall is planned.

    Another gallery wall is planned.

  • Paint yellow trays

    My first attempt at painting the yellow trays was hideous.

    My first attempt at painting the yellow trays was hideous.

  • Find pale pink cotton king-sized sheets for a reasonable price .

    New sheets

    New sheets

  • Design book shelves – Paint and install bookshelves in master bedroom.

    I printed a photograph and drew on it to get a feel for the scale of the future master bedroom shelves.

    I printed a photograph and drew on it to get a feel for the scale of the future master bedroom shelves.

  • Trim island toe kick and stain

    The toe-kick needs another coat of stain.

    The toe-kick needs another coat of stain.

  • Varnish shoes molding
  • Paint trim with spray painter

    Partly finished, tons more to do.

    Partly finished, tons more to do.

  • Install trim
  • Stain the back stairs to the conservatory
  • Buy exterior paint for the shingles
  • Door knobs for the new doors

    Doors are not very useful until the knobs are installed.

    Doors are not very useful until the knobs are installed.

  • Take the road trip postponed from April.

This unfinished list will move into July.  Charlie, of course, is ever-committed to his garden so we are eating fresh cucumbers and French beans. How do you get through the dog days of summer?

From TV Tray to PB Tray

I had the bright idea of changing my repainted TV tray tables to look more like the Pottery Barn version of a similar table.

My grandmother's TV trays (from the 1960s) went from faux malachite (original finish) to faux marbre (my finish).

My grandmother’s TV trays (from the 1960s) went from faux malachite (original finish) to faux marbre (my finish).

Using my favorite spray paint, Metallic Charcoal, starting with the tops I sprayed on multiple layers of paint.

The key to great spray paint coverage is building up thin layers.

The key to great spray paint coverage is building up thin layers.

The legs were already black so I just gave them a light covering of chalkboard spray paint (which I had on hand).

Black chalkboard paint covered the dings on the legs and supports.

Black chalkboard paint covered the dings on the legs and supports.

After doing the legs and under-supports I hit the tops once again.

Even the first wet coat of Metallic Charcoal over the lightly sanded TV tray looks better (to me).

After spraying the tops I sanded them lightly before giving them additional coats.

After the first couple of layers I lightly sanded the tops.

Metallic charcoal dries to an enamel-like sheen.  When sanded and wiped it looks more like slate.

Metallic charcoal dries to an enamel-like sheen. When sanded and wiped it looks more like slate.

I was looking for the sheen to be the final coat from the metallic paint.

Metallic charcoal is dark grey like gunmetal.

Metallic charcoal is dark grey like gunmetal.

These trays are as useful as ever, just a little updated.

Carter table on left; Glade table on right.

Carter table on left; Glade table on right.

Thanks, PB, for the inspiration.

Where do you get your inspiration?

List for June

Since the list for May was so successful (half-completion is success to me) I thought I’d try a list for June.  The purpose of the list is to keep me on task. When I have the time and energy to work on something, I don’t have to think about what to work on, I just go to the list.

Everything on the list is something I must personally:

  • do or
  • pay for or
  • oversee.

Some items are left over from the May list but others are due to progress  we’ve made in areas of the house.

  • Mix paint for linen closet
  • Prime and paint linen closet

    The top section has been installed now I need to paint the bottom.

    The top section has been installed now I need to paint the bottom.

  • Paint TV trays
  • Paint dining room paneling

    The paneling is primed but needs 2 (at least) top coats.

    The paneling is primed but needs 2 (at least) top coats.

  • Buy wallpaper or fabric for dining room. I have decided instead to paint the top of the wall denim.  If I do find wall paper or fabric that is superior I can always apply it over the paint.
  • Paint and set up potager fence

    The fence at the entrance to the potager needs one more section.

    The fence at the entrance to the potager needs one more section.

  • Arrange bedroom furniture

    The old dresser is ready for our new bedroom.

    The old dresser is ready for our new bedroom.

  • Hang pictures in upstairs hall

    Another gallery wall is planned.

    Another gallery wall is planned.

  • Paint yellow trays

    My first attempt at painting the yellow trays was hideous.

    My first attempt at painting the yellow trays was hideous.

  • Find pale pink cotton king-sized sheets for a reasonable price – this may be an ongoing search.  Apparently pale pink is out right now.
  • Design book shelves – Paint and install bookshelves in master bedroom.

    I printed a photograph and drew on it to get a feel for the scale of the future master bedroom shelves.

    I printed a photograph and drew on it to get a feel for the scale of the future master bedroom shelves.

  • Trim island toe kick and stain

    The toe kick needs to be faced with some dark luan then shoe molding attached.

    The toe kick needs to be faced with some dark luan then shoe molding attached.

  • Varnish shoe molding
  • Paint trim with spray painter

    Partly finished, tons more to do.

    Partly finished, tons more to do.

  • Install trim
  • Stain the back stairs to the conservatory
  • Buy exterior paint for the shingles
  • Door knobs for the new doors

    Doors are not very useful until the knobs are installed.

    Doors are not very useful until the knobs are installed.

  • Take the road trip postponed from April

This should keep us busy.  Charlie, of course, is ever-committed to his garden so by the end of June we should be eating some fresh veg. (We are already harvesting radishes and their greens.)

What’s your first priority in June? Please don’t say a month at the beach.

Crossing Off the List for May

Last month I made a special to-do list for May. The purpose of the list was to keep me on task.  I have a tendency to flit from project to project with little thought about finishing one. It was mostly made up of half-finished jobs. Everything on the list is something I must personally:

  • do or
  • pay for or
  • oversee.

I started out strong but in no way finished the entire list. For the past week I’ve had some kind of respiratory malaise that has all but put me down.  I go to my day job but don’t much feel like getting into a project after work. I’ve left everything on the list below and crossed out the items that are complete, some with a link to the finished project. Here it is:

  • Order bathroom tile
    Each 10.5

    Each 10.5″ by 10.5″ mosaic for the conservatory floor was wrapped in plastic and came 10 per box.

    Marble tile on the floor and white ice matte subway on the shower walls.

    Marble tile on the floor and white ice matte subway on the shower walls.

  • Paint planters

    The planters are painted yellow ochre.

    The planters are painted yellow ochre.

  • Make potting soil

    We mixed up equal parts of dirt, compost, and peat moss for the olive trees.

    We mixed up equal parts of dirt, compost, and peat moss for the olive trees.

  • Transplant olive trees

    The Koroneiki Greek olive tree in its new pot..

    The Koroneiki Greek olive tree in its new pot..

  • Touch up paint on bathroom lighting fixture

    I touched up the paint and electrified the light in the master bathroom.

    I touched up the paint and electrified the light in the master bathroom.

  • Choose paint for master bathroom to go with marble floor, bedroom color

    The master bathroom is painted Coventry Gray by Benjamin Moore.

    The master bathroom is painted Coventry Gray by Benjamin Moore which does not look blue in person.

  • Mix paint for linen closet
  • Prime and paint linen closet
  • Paint TV trays
  • Paint dining room paneling
  • Buy wallpaper or fabric for dining room
  • Transplant rosemary, lavender 

    The green planter boxes now contain lavender.

    The green planter boxes now contain lavender.

  • Paint and set up potager fence

    The fence at the entrance to the potager needs one more section.

    The fence at the entrance to the potager needs one more section.

  • Get rid of old ironwork

    The old ironwork that help up the porch roof at the kitchen door and front door has been removed and is now junk in the yard.

    The old ironwork that held up the porch roof at the kitchen door and front door has been removed and has been junk in the yard. Now it’s in someone else’s yard.

  • Arrange bedroom furniture
  • Hang pictures in upstairs hall
  • Paint yellow trays

    My first attempt at painting the yellow trays was hideous.

    My first attempt at painting the yellow trays was hideous.

  • Find pale pink cotton king-sized sheets for a reasonable price
  • Design book shelves

    I printed a photograph and drew on it to get a feel for the scale of the future master bedroom shelves.

    I printed a photograph and drew on it to get a feel for the scale of the future master bedroom shelves.

  • Trim island toe kick and stain
  • Varnish shoe molding

And I finished a month of Federal jury duty!

The water jug in the jury room was clearly labeled. I'm not sure who else who actually be there to drink other than jurors.

The water jug in the jury room was clearly labeled. I’m not sure who else who actually be there to drink other than jurors.

I’ve been busy, n’est-ce pas? Are you ready for summer?

What Do You Think About Denim?

I painted the conservatory ceiling Valspar’s “Hydrangea” which I love.

The conservatory is painted in Benjamin Moore's "Tea Light" on the walls and Valspar's "Hydrangea" on the ceiling.

The conservatory is painted in Benjamin Moore’s “Tea Light” on the walls and Valspar’s “Hydrangea” on the ceiling.

Originally I was thinking of painting it with Ralph Lauren’s denim technique.  I was pretty sure going over the ceiling at least 5 times (primer, 2 base coats, 1 glaze coat, one combing technique) would be way too labor intensive on a ceiling.

I never tired of the blue wallpaper above the paneling in the dining room.

I never tired of the blue wallpaper above the paneling in the dining room.

Meanwhile, in the dining room I’ve been waiting to find either wallpaper or fabric to finish the wall area above the judge’s rail height paneling.

The paneling will remain white but the area above definitely needs some color.

The paneling will remain white but the area above definitely needs some color.

The paneling is now white instead of limed woodtone but I still like the idea of blue up there.

I love this freeform splash of color!

I love this freeform splash of color!

I really wanted the Watercolor “Blue Drops” wallpaper which I could have for a small fortune. Maybe someday (when it’s discontinued).

PB Denim Wall

PB Denim Wall. (I prefer it without the map.)

Now I’m turning my thoughts to having some denim.

This area can be seen from the dining room.

This area can be seen from the dining room.

It would bridge the color gap between the “Tea Light” green conservatory and the “Waterbury Cream” kitchen.

The blue chairs in the living room are staying.

The blue chairs in the living room are staying.

It should also tie into the blue kitchen curtains, the blue of the conservatory ceiling, and the blue chairs in the living room.

I have some of our old wallpaper but I don't think it's the answer.

I have some of our old wallpaper but I don’t think it’s the answer.

I went to Home Depot this morning to get swatches of the denim palette because there are lots of choices.

Ralph Lauren "Blueprint" glaze over "Andover Blue" base.

Ralph Lauren “Blueprint” glaze over “Andover Blue” base.

Naturally there were no swatches available. After looking at the Ralph Lauren website I’m think I’m choosing between “Westport Blue” or “Blueprint” for the glaze.

The dining room ceiling is "Revere Pewter" by Benjamin Moore.

The dining room ceiling is “Revere Pewter” by Benjamin Moore.

The glaze can be painted over any color. My ceiling in the dining room is “Revere Pewter” and the adjacent living room walls are the same so perhaps something in this family (which includes “Edgecomb Gray”) should be the undercolor.

I'm pretty sure Charlie likes denim judging by his wardrobe.

I’m pretty sure Charlie likes denim judging by his wardrobe.

So what do you think of denim, pardner?

What’s your favorite color combination?

Spray Painting the Trim

Over a year ago I bought a paint sprayer and compressor.

I simple hand-held paint sprayer.

I simple hand-held paint sprayer.

Yesterday I finally used it.

The lumber from the living room has been moved into the east side yard.

The lumber from the living room has been moved into the east side yard.

Its first task was to coat the primed soon-to-be trim in “Mosaic White” semi-gloss.

These super long and low saw horses were perfect for spray painting.

These super long and low saw horses were perfect for spray painting.

Our carpenter friend built me a new pair of saw horses expressly for laying out the lumber and painting it.

After thinning the paint the spray painter gave a nice, even coat of paint.

After thinning the paint the spray painter gave a nice, even coat of paint.

We thinned the paint and checked the coverage on one of the new horses.

The painting went quickly.

The painting went quickly.

The weather was perfect — dry, warm, and breezy  — for fast drying paint.

We piled the newly painted wood with spacers between layers and covered the pile with tarps.

We piled the newly painted wood with spacers between layers and covered the pile with tarps.

He also made an outside storage tray for the 16-foot long lumber after it had been painted.

Lest you think I didn't get in on the action -- check out my protective gear.

Lest you think I didn’t get in on the action — check out my protective gear.

While we didn’t finish everything we definitely made a dent in the pile in the living room.

Do you don crazy get-ups for special jobs?

Painting Planters for Weeks

Well over a month ago I bought 3 large plastic planters into which to transplant our olive trees.

Naturally I adore this ochre planter from Provence.

Naturally I adore this ochre planter from Provence, the color I’m going for.

I decided to paint them yellow ochre.

The job of repainting these large planters is taking a long time.

I began with some Hubbell House Golden Maize which I had on hand.

Almost every nice day since them I’ve given them a coat of spray paint.

Gloss Sun Yellow by Rustoleum was a bit bright.

Gloss Sun Yellow by Rustoleum was a bit bright.

I started with some cheap cans ($1.50 each at WalMart) of yellow just to get started.

L to R:

L to R: Gloss Sun Yellow, Gold Rush, Gold Abundance, Outdoor Bright Yellow.

The second color was a gloss Sun Yellow and while the gloss looked great the color was a bit too bright.

The toned-down color on the left.

The toned-down color on the left.

I mottled the color with a satin (only choice) Outdoor Bright Yellow.  That did tone them down a bit.

These polycrylic and oil stain don NOT mix until you add some  paint, then it all smooths out.

These polycrylic and oil stain don NOT mix until you add some acrylic paint, then it all smooths out.

Then I mixed up some latex polyurethane, brown oil stain (which didn’t mix), yellow and tan acrylic.

I used an old brush to paint on the concoction of polyurethane, stain and paint.

I used an old brush to paint on the concoction of polyurethane, stain and paint.

I gave the planters a drippy coat of this to tone down the color even more.

The light blotch at the foot of the sawhorse is my entire first batch of special mix.

The light blotch at the foot of the sawhorse is my entire first batch of special mix.

Unfortunately I dipped about one brush worth and then the entire container fell on the ground.

We are getting closer to the color of the Anduze traditional planters in the top photo.

We are getting closer to the color of the Anduze traditional planters in the top photo.

I mixed it again and applied the tinted polyurethane to the planters.

Our harwood floors are finished with

Our hardwood floors are finished with SamSeal urethane.

After this layer dried I found some of the golden oil based polyurethane we used on the new hardwood floors.

I like the casual drippiness -- I did that on purpose.

I like the casual drippiness — I did that on purpose.

I was again hoping for some drips and that the color might add the honey tone found in real Anduze planters.

Honey in back, green in front.

Honey in back, green in front.

The planters are painted yellow ochre.

The planters are painted yellow ochre.

It wasn’t totally successful but a month later I’ve had enough.

Time to transplant.

Time to transplant.

We’re ready to plant. Oh, Charlie!

Do you start easy projects only to have them turn into an epic?