Friday, October 3, 2008

Painting the Walls (with a lot of buts)

So my old studio/new living room, as we call it around here is finally cleaned out, painted and ready for furniture. It took forever to find a place for the junkiest junk that I had stashed in there and in fact, more than a few things still are piled on the dining room table.

Initially, I had planned to paint the upper walls the same color that I painted the side walls in my studio, a deep neutral color called Peppercorn. I was so sure that this was the right color I added two extra gallons of paint in the order at the paint store.


Then I made the final decision on the color of the furniture, and then I found a beautiful rug and of course neither worked very well with the Peppercorn.

So I drove down to Sherwin Williams and picked out a deep brown, because now I was sure that I wanted the walls to be a dark chocolate brown. Normally I am great at picking out wall colors, when I painted the whole rest of the house, every color was right on. So I was pretty confident that the first brown I picked was the right brown.


After I rolled it on the walls (twice, just to be sure), I noticed that it looked a bit purple at certain times of the day. I liked how dark it was but the purple/raisin/deep burgundy thing each afternoon really bugged me. So it was back to my collection of paint samples where I picked out a nice warm brown, a bit lighter than I had planned however there would be no mistaking it for burgundy or purple or anything like that.


I was a bit concerned after I rolled it on and then even more so after it dried and it still looked disturbingly like the dog's diarrhea. At this point I had bought 6 gallons of paint and even the kids were starting to make fun of me. So I decided that a good option would be to mix the diarrhea and the deep purple color together. Doug scoffed at me, but I reminded him that I certainly know a bit about color for crying out loud! What does he think I do all day, anyway? So I mixed the two colors together until I got what I wanted. Painted the room yet again and it was so close that I even went around and even painted the edges.


After a few days of trying to convince myself that it was right I gave it up. It was a good mix but just not quite right for the room or for the sofa, chair and rug that I ordered. Doug was out of town for a few days that week and I took that opportunity to very quietly slink back to the paint store and buy two more gallons of the darker shade of the diarrhea paint, the one we had once discussed but passed on because we thought it was too dark. I rolled paint on the walls of my old studio/new living room for the fifth time, not counting the two coats that I had done five years ago when we moved in. I did a second coat just to be sure (again) and finished up all the edges. Again. This time though:


I love it. It is a beautiful warm, dark brown, somewhere between milk and dark chocolate and the rug goes perfectly with it. I have some worries about the furniture, as the fabric swatch and rug combo bothers me a bit, but there is no turning back on that one so for now I am just enjoying the wall color.

And I am also appreciating the fact that the walls in this room are only half walls because of the paneling and so one can roll all the walls in just over an hour. My wasted time seems pretty minimal when you look at it that way, don't you think? Coulda been way worse.

Oh and we had planned to replace the hollow core Home Depot style front door this fall, but that project is on hold and so I think that I will soon be painting that door to match the rest of the trim. The hunter green is just not working for me here. And by the way, anybody recognize the top painting in between the two doorways?


Melody said...

I think it's Steven LaRose's beautiful work. Is there a prize involved here? haha

Steven LaRose said...

I'm so glad somebody got it before I commented. I was trying to figure out how to say something without giving it away. Cool. Thanks Melody. email me your mailing address and your prize will mailed in 7 to 10 days.

I was actually going to go on an on about the wall painting process, but Tracy and I chatted about it. The crux is, don't sell yourself short on your taste. Tracy's point was that the cost of paint was getting to be a burden. That is why I always advise people to invest in a selection of Universal Colorants or Tints. It is so easy to tweak and adjust colors on your own. Also, when suspended in mediums like Floetral or Clear Top Coats, make killer glazes that turn your multiple "buts" into richer and richer glazes.

But, really, I'm commenting to get a close up on the image below mine! It is wild looking. Wait. Don't post it until I draw what I think I see there. Tonight (sat), I'll make a drawing and scan it.

Thanks again melody

Kari Gibson said...

Oh, dear, I am wiping the tears of laughter from my eyes, that is such a funny story - your family will tease you for years about it!

Steven LaRose said...

Ok. I couldn't wait until night time. Is the image anything like this?

Tracy Helgeson said...

You are right Melody. I had this painting up in my studio and then decided that it would look perfect in the new living room. Sad not to see it ALL THE TIME, as it was right next to my computer and god knows I never move away from there, but now many other people will be able to enjoy it and that is good too.

Hmm, Looks like Steven is honing in on my prize giving? Melody should definitely get something here:)

Good advice about the paint Steven and I hope someone will make good use of it. However, my wall painting days are over for the time being. I am ok with living with the colors I have picked until i go to the rest home in town:)

Thanks Kari, glad you enjoyed my story. Don't know if the kids will tease me forever, they tend to focus on my most recent gaffes, and there have been a few since. But I am sure Doug will have a few zingers for me in the future.

And yes, Steven, it's pretty close. I'll see if I can scan it and then tell the story behind it, it's kind of cute.

Karen Jacobs said...

Sad to say, you've pretty much described my approach to painting... canvases, that is! Takes me forever to get it right, and seems like gallons of paint, but not really.

Sylvia Jenstad said...

Had to the walls... I also love your paintings... very cool

Kim Hambric said...

My house used to have rooster-colored walls -- gold, red, and green. I am now the proud owner of five brown rooms. Each room is a different shade of brown. Each room has been an experiment in color. I never knew there were so many browns. Lets see . . . five brown rooms, two to three failed tries in each room . . . hmm, yes, lots of browns.

You most definitely have a beautiful brown room. Enjoy!

Mim said...

Love the color! very cinnamony. I miss the old house feeling. THere is something so different about alder homes. THe walls, (horsehair plaster)the molding, even the sound is different! Enjoy your fab new room!