Sunday, March 1, 2009

The Wall! (or) Learning the Hard Way to Faux Paint

You, know, I have had so many plans to get my grand children's photos on my blog, all my kids birthdays up to date with sweet loving sugar hugs to my loved ones, including my darling Mom's birthday and my parents 60th ANNIVERSARY - WOW! What Cool stuff is that? (Love you guys so much)!

Instead of doing those great things, I have been trying to make a faux plaster old world thing kind of wall in my living room which has taken all my spare time.

I read my sisters blog, a few weeks ago -
her walls were done in a day -
handy husband, painting perfectly,
walls perfect,
beautiful home in order
as all things should be in order.

Her new walls look wonderful (I went and saw them) and all put together. I actually started my project BEFORE she did and . . . (chuckle) . . . I'm just jealous! I actually didn't know before I saw my sister's blog that we were working on a wall at the same time. However, hers was done a long time ago).

But I digress . . . where was I? Oh . . .

I wanted my walls to look - well - like venetian plaster, or old world sort of thing. I have wanted that since I moved to Eagle Mountain, only that was 9 years ago! O.K. so I'm not exactly on schedule. However, I decided to try ONE wall, a very small wall in case it did not turn out well. Then, I supposed I could move on to bigger and better things - like my family room??? That's another story (my family room is currently a very large storage room. how SAD!!!)

Anyway, so here I go. I wanted texture on the wall. I needed to know how, so I went to the 'world wide web' first where I read about three million ways to do this type of project. I downloaded page after page of stuff.

I studied the painting department brochures at Home Depot, Lowes, etc. for hours on hours (ask my sister about my 'indecisive' problem when trying to buy something . . . or no - maybe don't ask her - I won't come out looking so wonderfully on that one).

I read painting books in the book stores. What did I discover? There must be three million ways to do textures of all kinds and painting techniques of all kinds. How can it be so different from one site to the next. TOO MUCH INFORMATION is not better for someone with indecision issues.

I finally decided on a method I thought seemed most comfortable for me - after all I used to antique my ceramic projects - I can do it that way - how different can it be? LoL - well . . .

This is my small wall - newly patched, ready to begin
(Actually, just my stair well wall - how hard can THAT be?)

I decided to use just plain old pre-mixed wall plaster. I decided on that only after I visited my friend Lynne's house. Her husband told me what he used. Whew! That took a difficult decision out of my hands - I'll just copy Kevin - sort of . . .

I put on one layer of plaster - it looked good

My first coat of 'Texture'

. . . and no - I am not expecting - I am wearing an ugly bulky apron underneath Ammon's shirt. I threw this shirt on just before Jim snapped the photo 'cause I was only wearing the ugly bulky apron for a shirt and this is a G-rated blog - besides I looked just a little scary.

Jim does not look amused as he watches -
Actually I think he was VERY amused -
but notice HE is not wearing painting clothes!!!

PROBLEM - I had it in the back of my head somewhere, the directions for "Venetian Plaster" which calls for a LOT of sanding between coats.

So I sanded . . .

but I didn't really get it for a while - I was not putting on Venetian Plaster . In fact I put on THREE dang layers of mud cause I sanded it down TWICE before I figured out I really didn't need to do that.

I finally quit sanding it down . . . duh!

This is no longer a day job. Nor a WEEK job - Oh my goodness, this became a WEEKS and WEEKS job (since I work all day doing other things besides paint a small, small wall) . . . My living room is a mess.

Next comes the paint. I'm not going to tell you how long it took me to pick out paint colors. Nor am I going to tell you I am satisfied with it, because part of the problem with being indecisivie is that the indecisive one also tends to have buyers remorse all the time (exception - my lamps from the Lamp Blog).

I used a primer (cause someone told me too) then a base coat. The base coat looked exactly the color of my makeup. I was very, very concerned. I absolutely did not want a wall the color of Caucasian flesh . . . I had to look at that wall for a week before I could get to the next phase.

Next phase, add the 'antiquing' Whew! The color is a little Better.

It is hard to see the texture from this photo.
It actually looks better that this - I promise!

HOWEVER, I have to wonder . . . now what? - It looks WAY out of place and I don't like the white trim anymore. I also realize just how badly the rest of my house needs a coat of paint.

Back to the store. I bought some matching paint for the rest of my house and started doing touch ups on the rest of my walls - kitchen, dining room, hallway . . . etc. Another week goes by . . . My house is still in chaos! This is one, dumb, tiny piece of my living room - Good Grief!

I decided to go buy paint to paint the trim - NOT white - dark brown I think . . . well maybe. Maybe not - Maybe - Maybe not -- JOAN !!! Help me!!!! What should I do????

I Paint it dark brown.

I like it with the wall a lot better I think . . .
but guess what?

It looks WORSE with the rest of my now very white walls in the rest of my white house . . .

. . . and what about that red railing?
Now I've got to buy some stain for the railing to match the wall . . .
and I can't leave the walls white with this brown trim sticking out like that.
I guess I need new carpet too, and furniture . . .

Ugh! I like the WALL - but boy is it out of place! I decide to sleep on it.

I'm so tired, I have no idea I'm sleeping
with every animal in the world . . .
. . . o.k. just Daisy and Skweek,
but thanks Jim for taking THIS photo!!!

"I know what I'll do", I think to myself . . . so I went to home depot and priced the faux rock stuff. I decided that I would make an arch into my dining room - this would make a smaller entry, and the rock would be a nice transition from THE WALL.

Another $200.00??? SOOOOoooo, that means I'll have to build another wall before I can go on - and I also need to learn to be a brick layer. Does this project resemble a squid when you chew it? It never goes away, it just grows bigger as you chew it? Yeah! My Squid Project - It is growing - bigger and bigger and BIGGER - I guess I could always paint the wall back the way it was and call it good!

For now, I am just going to leave it like this - for a week or two!


  1. Wow! No wonder you took a nap after it was done! I got tired just READING your post! That is a lot of hard work but at least it paid off. Your wall looks really good!

  2. A suggestion: Try a white/off white glaze treatment on both the trim and the wall. The trim will have an aged limewashed look and the walls will be a less brown. Might help integrate the space without so much labor...

  3. OK, I think it's working this time.
    You did a great job and it looks wonderful. I love the brown trim and I think you need to do the wall with the opening the same way.

    Make sure to go to Nivole's and check out their decor. It is just what you need for your arch.

    Get Jim out of his nice clothes and make him at least base in the wall color. He looks way too good for this project.

    This wall is the "real" you and you need your home to reflect that, so even if it takes a year, well, you have been wanting it forever so all good things come to those who wait.

  4. Hey Joan, thanks for the encouragement - I'll be patient. xo


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