Living Room Remodel

A few years ago I posted about the new sofa I purchased for my living room. In that post I talked about how I wanted to completely remodel the living room and change-up the paneling in the room. I don’t know if it was because I was spending so much time at home that I just got tired of the paneling or because I saw how nice paneling looked painted after watching a home improvement show on HGTV, but, I finally decided it was time to do something about it.

I did some research to find out what the best primer and roller was to use and then primed and painted a small section of the paneling behind the curtains. It came out nice and I quickly decided that I wanted to paint the entire living room.

First though I had to paint the ceiling. So, I taped up around the mirror, covered some furniture with old sheets, removed some items off a shelving unit and pictures off the wall and got to painting.

The following week I started in on the walls. Before priming and painting I washed the paneling with a mild soap (Dawn dish soap) to remove any dirt and dust build-up. Once the paneling was clean and dry, I applied the first coat of primer. I used a multi-surface primer and a thick roller (3/4-inch nap) meant for rough surfaces so I would be able to get into the grooves of the paneling. Applying the first coat of primer took me a lot longer than I anticipated… like 5 hours! But, taking my time was worth it as I was able to get the primer into all the grooves, although, the brown of the paneling was still peeking through considerably so I began to have some concerns that it wasn’t going to look nice, but, there was no turning back. It’s one thing when you paint a small sample section but another thing when you paint all the walls.

The following day I applied a second coat of primer and I felt better about what the final outcome would look like. I could hardly see the brown peeking through.

And a few days later I painted the walls with the first coat of color I had chosen… Whisper White.

The following day I applied another coat of the color and since the paint was a paint and primer in one I basically applied 4 coats of primer and two coats of paint to the wall so I am happy to say that the brown paneling was a distant memory by the time I was done painting.

Once the walls were done it was time to refinish some of the furniture. Initially I was only planning on painting the base of the coffee and side table but then decided to spruce up the shelving unit as well. The three pieces were made by my Dad, who passed away about five years ago, so it was important to me to keep them.

I started with the shelves. I didn’t want to strip the wood completely so I bought a wood stain that was slightly darker than the original color and could be applied to wood that is already stained. All I needed to do was lightly sand the wood. After lightly sanding the shelves I used an oil-based black paint to repaint the metal portion of the unit and then re-stained the shelves.

Before…

After…

Then it was on to the side table and coffee table. Initially I was going to spray paint both of them black. I even bought the spray paint, but I had reservations about it. I was concerned that the color would be uneven or worse that it would be streaky. Since I had so much of the black paint left from painting the metal on the shelving unit, I decided to paint them instead. To prep them I lightly sanded them to get off any loose paint and rust.

Before…

 

 

After…

Once I was done with the walls and the furniture there was one thing left that was bugging me. The rug. I knew eventually I wanted to rip out the carpet and refinish the hardwood floors. But, seeing how good the walls looked and the newly painted furniture I knew I had to get rid of the rug ASAP.

I was able to get a reasonable quote for the floors, so I went for it. To save money I ripped out the carpet myself with the help of a friend’s husband. Ripping the carpet out was the easy part, the tedious part was removing all of the nails and staples. Ripping the carpet out led to another expense… the need for new baseboards. The original baseboards weren’t flush to the floor but instead were about an inch from the floor and the carpet filled that inch.

The floors before (they were in pretty bad shape) …

Right after the sanding…

In the process of being stained…

The finished floors…

Once all these big things were done it was time for the finishing touches.

The curtains… I purchased paisley patterned pinch pleat curtains that I was initially planning on hanging on traverse rods. Finding curtains for traverse rods is not an easy feat and I fell in love with these but, they were only available in 108” and I needed 96″, so I ended up hemming all of the curtains with heat bond.

I installed the traverse rods I purchased and after hemming all of the curtains I hung them and then when I went to pull the cord to open and close the curtains it didn’t work. They worked fine without the curtains on them but not with. So, after trying to fix them I determined that the rods must be defective.

So, I painstakingly removed the curtains from the rods and all of the hooks that I had inserted to hang them. After going back and forth as to what to do I decided to forgo the traverse rod idea and purchased a curtain rod that hangs from the ceiling as opposed to attaching to the wall. Thankfully the curtains I purchased had loops behind them that enabled me to use a “regular” curtain rod to hang them. I must say I am much happier with this rod and I am able to open and close the curtains a lot easier than I am sure I would have ever been able to with the traverse rods.

Since I had so much blue in the living room – sofa, curtains and my new tv stand – I decided to add a pop of color with this blue and orange rug.

I even found an ottoman in the same shade of orange.

And here are some pics of the final look of my living room. I still have to hang pictures on the wall, but, so far so good. I am very happy with the outcome.

What to tackle next??? I am thinking of painting an old bedroom set to breathe new life into it.

Paint Pouring

One thing I will never be.. A painter. I’m great at visualizing things but not so great at putting them to paper. I’ve done quite a few paint nights and for me it’s more about the social aspect than the end result. But recently I discovered and tried a type of painting I can do without feeling inadequate about my painting abilities – or should I say inabilities -… Paint Pouring. It’s basically what it sounds like, pouring paint on a canvas to create a picture.

To create your paint pouring masterpiece you will need a canvas (I used an 8 x 8 and 10 x 10 inch canvas – anything bigger and you might need more paint), 2 oz. bottles of acrylic paint (I used 4 different colors), white school glue, disposable cups, a wire rack, an aluminum pan for the wire rack to sit in, disposable gloves and craft sticks. In lieu of craft sticks I actually used plastic knives; disposable cutlery has a lot more uses than just eating.

And while this is a paint pouring project, you can’t just pour the paint on the canvas, you have to mix them with water and glue which will allow the paint to flow easier and bind to the canvas without flaking and also allows the different layers of paint to stick together. To create the mixture you will mix two parts glue with one part water in the disposable cups and then add an equal amount of paint. My ratios were a bit off, I used .75 oz. of water, 1.5. oz. of glue and 2 oz. of paint, just so I could use the entire bottle of paint without having to measure it out. I don’t think my slightly off measurements made that much of a difference. A small hint, I used the same measuring cup for the water and glue, so I measured the water for each of my cups first and then the glue. After adding the water, glue and paint to each of my cups I stirred them together well.

Now it’s time to paint pour. Wearing disposable gloves pour puddles of the paint on different parts of the canvas. Tilt the canvas in different directions to spread the paint. You can use the craft sticks (or disposable cutlery) to create swirls in the paint. Continue to pour the paint and tilt the canvas until you have reached your desired “picture.” Make sure to get the corners and sides of the canvas as well. Place the canvas on the wire rack and allow it to dry completely – about 24 hours.

Hang and enjoy you quick and easy masterpiece.

I’ve made a few of these and I am happy with how each of them has turned out. These are fun pieces that can be personalized and would make great gifts.

 

Happy Painting!

Paint Pouring

Supplies:

Canvas

School glue

Acrylic paint

Water

Cooling tray

Deep pan

Plastic cups

Craft sticks

Disposable gloves

Directions:

Mix two parts glue with one part water in the plastic cups. Add an equal amount of pain and mix together well. Repeats for all the colors. Place the cooling rack inside of the pan and the canvas on top of the cooling rack. Feel free to lay newspaper below the pain in case of paint splatter.

Pour puddles of the paint in different spots of the canvas and begin tilting the canvas in different directions to spread the paint around. Use a craft stick to swirl the paint. Continue pouring, tilting and swirling until you are happy with the outcome. Make sure the pain reaches all of the corners and the sides of the canvas.

Place on the wire rack and let dry completely.