Easter Weekend Project 4 – House Upper Level Painting

The final project that we completed on the Easter Weekend is one that I had originally intended to do the weekend after Thanksgiving last year. Unfortunately, it was a very rough week and I didn’t end up getting a chance to get this project done. Then we got a puppy and there was no chance of accomplishing this project with a puppy causing chaos, so it kept getting put off. Finally, I found the time to get it done.

We have been in the house now for 10 years this September. In that time, I have painted a few rooms, but the one area that I have been wanting to do for the last year or so is the living room, dining room, entryway and hallways. Yes, it is a bigger area, but they all connect so it seemed right to do it all at once.

The people who owned the house before us had just finished updating the house, so when we moved in, there wasn’t really any need to do any updates. Instead we focussed on the outside. However, over the years, I realized that I didn’t love the colour of the living spaces. It was done in a split paint with a white trim border splitting the 2. The top was a light colour and the bottom was darker. In different lights it ranged from grey to green and sometimes blue. When our electric wall fireplace bit the dust last fall, and I had to take it off the wall, it was clearly time to update the paint and fill the holes that were left behind.

I really liked the colour of our bedroom which is called “Antiqued Silver”. I believe it is a true grey as it doesn’t really show any green, blue, red or purple tints in different lights. So when I decided to do the living areas, I decided to do a feature wall with that darker grey and then a lighter grey for the rest. I know…grey is so boring, but I like that you can change the accessories in the room to change the look without having to spend 4 days re-painting. So that’s what I went with.

I found the information on the can from the bedroom paint and took it in to our hardware store. From there, the lady at the paint counter showed me the similar paints or complimentary paints that go with that shade. A few of them I said no to right off the bat because they were clearly blue or green undertones. I mentioned that if it wasn’t a true grey, then I would prefer a warm undertone of red or purple. Again, it is a very light shade of grey, so it shouldn’t be overly noticeable.

I ended up picking a light grey shade that had a hint of red undertone (or at least that is what it said on the card). It wasn’t noticeable looking at the swatch. I really liked the 2 swatches together, so I jumped in and went with it. I grabbed 2 gallons of a brand that was a primer & paint combined in the hopes that I wouldn’t need to do more than 2 coats despite the fact that there was a light and dark half to the walls. Lazy, I know, but I really didn’t want it to take 5 days to do. Plus we used the same brand in our bedroom and it only needed one coat, so I still had half a gallon of that to use on the feature wall.

I started by moving all the furniture into the middle of the living room and pulling off the half-wall molding to see how much sanding was heading my way. Luckily, the owners before me had painted and then put the molding up, which means there was no paint lines that needed to be sanded. The only work that needed to be done was filling the holes where the brad nails had held the molding onto the wall. I also filled a few other spots that needed it, though I didn’t bother filling the picture holes because I planned to put all the pictures back where they had been before painting.

Once the putty was dry, I grabbed the drywall sander and ran it over all the putty areas to ensure nice smooth walls. I also ran it over a few areas where they had clearly done some repairs and not sanded really well. From there, I then washed the walls with TSP in order to prep them for painting.

The next day, I got started on the lighter grey paint. I trimmed all of the walls throughout the entire living areas that were going to be painted. It started off a little slow because it has been a while since I have done some trim that I wanted to be nice and perfect. I did a good job when we did our bedroom, but cared a little less in there since it is only Kurt and I that use that room. The living areas are more noticeable, so it was a slow start. Once I got comfortable, it started to move a little faster. I don’t like using tape because it doesn’t always seal properly and it is a pain in the butt to put up but also to take down. The only spots that I did tape were tight areas around door frames that I wouldn’t have been able to paint without getting the door trim.

While I was doing the trim, Kurt took a break from his project to come and help start rolling the walls. He managed to get the living room main wall that connects to the dining room, and the whole dining room done. Then he decided to go back to his projects. I also had a couple extra days off, while he had to go back to work, so he also wanted a little down time to relax, which is fair considering how much we accomplished over the weekend. Though he did help me with the stairs and our stair ladder. So happy we have this ladder! The ceiling trim around the stairwell would have been near impossible without it.

The first coat that Kurt had rolled did a great job of covering the 2-tone walls. I had to look hard to see the line where the dark met the light, but it was there, so I knew the walls with the 2 tones would need 2 coats. The other walls with a light paint, likely would only need one, but we would see.

We left all the trim and the walls that Kurt had rolled to dry. The next day, Kurt headed off to work, and I got to painting. I spent the day doing all the light paint, which actually didn’t take as long as I expected. I always forget how quickly rolling paint can go. It is the trim that is the finicky bit. After getting the first coat on, I took a break to eat some lunch and relax for an hour, then I went back and did a second coat on the couple walls that had 2-tone paint.

I debated leaving the feature wall for the next day, but decided that I had the energy and was on a roll (get it?), so I might as well keep going. It’s such a small wall that it didn’t take me very long to get the first coat on. I gave it half an hour to mostly dry and then did a second coat. Even though it was a darker paint, I wanted to make sure that the 2-tone wouldn’t peak out in any way. I managed to finish up before Kurt got home.

After chilling for a bit, I started putting the furniture back to their proper places, or the re-arranged places we decided to try out. Although it states to let the paint cure for 12 hours, it is dry to the touch within an hour. I was very careful not to put any of the furniture against the wall, just a bit out from the walls. I would push it into place the next day. I did however, put all the pictures back up. Might as well.

While I was doing that, I remembered that we wanted to put one of the framed photos of Ellie over her chair in the corner. Kurt helped me decide which one and I hung it, completing Ellie’s corner.

That night we chilled and I let my sore back relax. Painting is not overly strenuous, but there is some crawling on the floor and stretching way above the head. That mixed with the yardwork and rock carrying we did, my back was ready for a break. I had realized when I pushed all the furniture into the centre of the living room that I would eventually have to do the small bit of wall over the blinds and patio window, so that was on the agenda for the next morning.

After Kurt left for work the next morning, I got that last little bit of wall painted and all the supplies put away. The rest of the day was for relaxing. Though Basil did demand that I take her for a walk. Even though she was out in the yard with us all weekend, she was bored and wanted a proper outing, so I took her out to one of our walking paths and took her for a nice little jaunt. Though, it ended up a little shorter than I intended because my lower back got super stiff. Perhaps we had over-done it a little over the Easter weekend.

All-in-all, I am really happy with the colour. At first I was a little annoyed because the light grey does definitely have a blue tinge in certain lights despite not having any blue in it. Perhaps there is something about our living room patio weekend that gives the room a blue hue regardless of the paint colour. Either way, this is what it will be for the next 10 years, and I like it. Especially the solid colour walls instead of the 2-tone walls.


2 Comments Add yours

    1. JP says:

      Thank you! We love how it all turned out.

      Liked by 1 person

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