amis au fil des ans

just a few good friends, sharing adventures in family, arts, and sometimes heavy machinery

Archive for the category “paint”

stuck in the mud

ahh, the dreaded mudroom.  the room in the back of the house that ends up collecting all the miscellaneous clutter that didn’t fit anywhere else in the house.  instead of a junk drawer, it’s the junk room.  at least this is what it is at our house.  for context, our mudroom spans the entire rear of the house, but is only about 7 feet wide.  picture a sideways bowling alley, and yup…that’s what the room is.  here is a picture from when we first bought the house:

you’ll notice a nice-looking built-in desk, which gave my hubby the smart idea of selling the house to me since it had a sewing room.  “look babe, you can turn this room into a sewing room!”  needless to say i have never so much as cut fabric in that room.  in the next few years we will come to hate this built in desk, but ultimately decide to do nothing about it.  (sorry for ruining the end of the story).

i’ve wanted to do something to the mudroom  we came up with these grand plans, had contractors come out and give estimates for shelving and cabinets and wainscotting and tile flooring…i mean, if there has ever been a plan for a mudroom, i was going to have it!  in the meantime, you could come over pretty much any day of the week and this is what you’d find:

so that was about 6 months ago.  needless to say, i did a full 180 on the whole grand mudroom plan.  i don’t know why, but i abandoned the mudroom plans and took matters into my own hands.

first, i started painting.  the original color was a cross between barf and honey, with beige trim that looks like it was painted white and then someone smoked cigarettes next to it for 20 years.  i was going for a grey color, but like every wall color i pick this ended up more blue than grey.  luckily, blue is my favorite color.  the trim is sherwin williams #7004 snowbound.  note, i always use sherwin williams colors because i have the paint deck, but i never buy their paint.  i could write a whole blog about how overpriced their product is, with terrible customer service to top it off, but i’ll bite my tongue.

next, i bought a great shelf/coat hook unit from home decorators collection, and we were off running.  the shelf was pretty easy to put together, but i did have some assistance which was necessary for hanging the seemingly 200 lb unit.  i hung a few pictures on the walls, bought a new rug, got rid of all the extra junk that was just hanging around, and taa dah!

and yes, of course i still have a bit to do – you’ll notice the back door isn’t painted white yet, and the bench will either be reupholstered or get throw pillows, since it’s obvious that the beige microfiber does not match.  also i still have at least one more picture to hang.

here are some of the details:

cafe curtains - handmade - dwell studio soft scrolls fabric

pier1 imports multi coat hook

ikea - dog butt leash hook

personal images -


give an old book(case) a new color?

would you try to hide them and make them disappear into the wall or would you paint them in an accent color (think pear green) and make them stand out?


i have been toying with the idea of painting them since we moved in.  but i hate them.  and i don’t think painting them is going to make me like them any more.  or will it?  can you give an old book you hate a new cover and all of a sudden like it?

i was all set to give up on the idea until i saw this picture in the design within reach catalog over the weekend:

it was love at first sight.

but can my dysfunctional shelves ever make me swoon like these do?



painted lampshades

last cheap decorating item…i promise!

but we had these bright white lamps with bright white lampshades on the piano in our living room and i didn’t like the look they were giving.  with our ceiling such a deep blue and the brown on the rug and curtains, we needed some more color infused into the room.  i saw a painted lampshade at anthropologie and thought…i can do that!  and…i have paint!

so i went into the basement and got all the paint i had and started painting!  well…first i sketched what i wanted to draw and then i painted.  and then i hot glued some ribbon for added texture.  i still need to add some texture to the second lamp…maybe some fabric buttons?


bzzzzzzzzzzzz…where’s my honeycomb?

a few months back i stumbled upon this picture in a blog:

needless to say…i was hooked.  i wanted them…no…needed them in my house.  so a couple weekends ago when b’s father was in town i set them to work.  i had everything sketched out and drawn up with measurements and everything.  and then it got comical.  b’s dad is a physicist and had to create a model for the shelves to confirm the lengths and angles.  let’s just say that 10 hours later he proclaimed me “right”.  b hung the shelves this morning (with a little help from a cute 3 year old…).

they are in b’s office (which is really a glorified hallway with a door on it).  you are also getting the first glance at the new paint color (bm freedom trail)!  he used wood we reclaimed from an old storage closet in our basement.  the wood had old posters glued to some planks and we tried to get some of those pieces to give in an old feel.  i would like to try to attach the one that is floating on the left side to the set of two but i am not sure if we can…  my initial drawing had 3 connected and one floating.  but hey…at least i have something!

updated kitchen

ah yes, the kitchen.  when we first moved in, we had the pleasure of finding all kinds of issues with the kitchen.  the fridge had a water / ice dispenser but nobody ever bothered to install a water line, much less connect it to the fridge.  the faucet sprung a catastrophic leak on about its 4th use, the microwave is enormous and hung down super low so that if you had a pot on the stove you couldn’t fit a spoon in the pot to stir it without hitting the bottom of the microwave.  it was genius.  all the cupboards were really easy for me to reach, which is not a good thing…and all the knobs were old basket-weave style that just looked hideous.  the floor plan is a little weird too, with the kitchen being a little offset from the main house.  i guess that’s what happens when you take a 107 year old duplex and make it a single family home.  sometimes the walls just aren’t where you want them.

fast forward about a year (good grief!) and voila!  we have a whole new kitchen.  we raised all the cabinets about 4″ – including the microwave – installed a slate tile backsplash with glass tiles as a stripe (not the original plan but we got the slate for free, so alas), new knobs on all the cabinets, and this weekend i finally painted the walls a medium green-gray color.  of course all of the colors look off in this picture, but at least now you can see it looks like a more colorful, functional space. (with a lot of junk on the counter, sorry I was in the middle of cleaning when i took these).

many older homes have sections of rooms called “bump outs” which is exactly as you would expect – a piece of the room that sticks out on the exterior.  we have a partial bump out in the kitchen, which is currently waiting for it’s makeover, hopefully into a dining space.  i painted this the same green-grey color.  i think we’ll do a tall bistro table with two tall chairs, just to give it a better look than the hookah table currently sitting there.

next up – window treatments!  i think i might actually just do something on the bottom half of these tall windows since i really like the light that comes in from them.  maybe i’ll just whip up some simple shears to give us a little more privacy…what do you think?

bump out after

bump out before

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