I am about to take one -a big one- and I am nervous. I have managed to escape for a night or two with my husband here and there, but since starting O'verlays I haven't "left". I always had my cell or computer nearby to check in. 

This is an official "Off The Grid" vacation as requested by my family. eeeek!  

So tomorrow at 5pm I am gone...until the following Sunday, 
where I am afraid to the pile of emails and spam I will come home to might eat me alive. 
 I hate technology
 (but I secretly f-ing love it)
 Damn you and your electrical magic-like heroine like qualities! 
 Ok. My rant is done.  This is much needed.

If you need me I will be sitting by a lake biting my nails and drinking heavily.
send smoke signals.

Paint Phase DONE

Let there be light!

I can officially cross "Paint Kitchen Cabinets" off the To Do List!
(and kitchen walls and ceiling)
I took all of last week and this weekend, but brown laminate is no more!

Can't say I will ever miss this kitchen...

I went with Ben Moore "Old Navy" for the lowers and "Woodlawn Blue" (mildly obsessed with this color at the moment) for the walls and 1/4 tinted for striped ceiling.
I couldn't decide which way to stripe the ceiling so I met in the middle and just diagonaled it.

I actually chucked my old table out (kids=gross shit even Magic Erasers can't take off) and replaced it with my old glass Parsons desk from the basement.  
Much better!

I am going to be building a banquette next on the wall. I have always wanted one, so now I just need to sift through my Banquette Pinterest File and get ideas...

Holy bat cave before!

I am so happy with the new and improved kitchen!
My neck is killing me from painting stripes and I have no voice and a lousy summer cold, 
but none of that can't bring me down right now. 

I hope to have a banquette and O'verlays on the cabinets by the end of the week, 
and then this room be done!

So my big chic tip is paint. I know, boring. But it is a completely underrated tool, and I'm surprised how many people are afraid of it.  Nowadays there is a paint and primer for everything, AND if you screw up and hate the color  it is an easy fix. And it can change your life for around $35 a gallon, well so can tequila I suppose, but we are talking good change.
It is seriously my answer to (almost) everything.  For example, we moved into our current house...an original 1964 ranch, and when I say original I mean original. I was seriously expecting Alice to be hiding in the closet with Sam the butcher. We decided to take this reno slowly, really think out what we want. Well I'm impatient, and since we weren't going to be knocking down any walls or ripping ugly out out I decided to renovate with paint. In short, put lipstick on on pig. Anything that would hold paint or primer was fair game. So here is a quick "what is possible" with paint...
Lets start with a completely dated yellow brick fireplace with black and gold doors. Oh, and lets add dark wood cabinetry and paneling into the mix too...

Kilz Primer, (can't live without it) some black high heat paint to fix the fireplace doors, and a little regular latex for the walls and trim and that "dirty den" feeling is gone...

Lets move into the kitchen. There is a lot wrong with it, but lets pick on the countertops.  They were
cream Formica with brown edge. I know, they were nuetral, but they had a few chips and stains.  We are going to redo this space in a few years, but in the mean time I decided to paint them.  Rustoleum's Countertop Paint.  I'm telling you they make a paint for every surface. I did a Cararra marble finish on them. See how here. Next I  top coated them with 3 coats of latex polyurethane. They should last me 3-5 years if I recoat them yearly...

Furniture gets to get in on the action too of course.  I love vintage pieces because they are in general really well made, and you can feel good about them not ending up in a landfill.  I loved this piece I found at a thrift store for small money...
It got a coat of primer and 2 coats of a sea green I mixed from leftover paints I had on hand and its a whole new dresser...
Now just painting your walls a solid color can change things dramatically.  But if you have a little patience and faith you can do wonders.  This is my entry when we moved in...

I have a sick addiction to really expensive wallpaper.  I have "painted" my own papers to feed that addiction.  The great thing is you have complete control over your palette and scale. I have always loved the look deGournay and other classic wall murals that depicted birds and blossoms so I decided to use it as inspiration to make my own.  I picked the colors I wanted and then pumped up the scale to give it a funkier feel in my retro space...

And lastly, tile.  
There is a great primer called XIM that sticks to everything... glass, laminate, and tile.
We have a sunroom that had harvest gold and brown tiles.  Here is the thing. We can't use this room much because its literally 110 degrees during the day.  We hope to one day put our kitchen renovation out there.  In the meantime I have to look at this room throught those giant double sliders, so I wanted it pretty...
I used XIM on the tile, and then 2 coats of a aqua floor paint and traced along the grout lines with a darker color to help mask them..

Its still hot, just not as hot of a mess.


It has begun!  I have 25% of my cabinets painted:
 All I can say is "HOLY CRAP", so much brighter and better already.
This might take a while.
There is a lot of scrubbing & hardware removing.  
That in itself took almost a day for just the above cabinets.  
AND we are having a 95 degree heatwave here and I have no AC.
 So today I tackle the uppers on this side of the kitchen....

I have no plan.
All I know is the lowers are going to be a color.
Right now navy and a soft grey/blue/green tone are in the lead.

And then there will be the design of the O'verlays.

Here is what I am thinking...
maybe doing something different with mirror behind:

 Or just keeping it uniform and safe:
I do know the ceiling is going to be where the color and pattern happen ( kind of quietly), 
and that is about it.

Anyone else have any lower cabinet color suggestions. 
I have this happening in the mudroom right off it, but I don't want orange on my cabinets (and ignore the turquoise kitchen wall and grey dresser- they are gone):

I will do anything but white.
I am all ears.

Mojo rising?

Maybe!  I know I have been super lame on my end as a blogger the past couple months,
but let me explain.
 Work, kids, blah blah.
Mostly its work, interrupted by kids
(imagine small Will Ferrells in the "Ma! The meatloaf!" scene from Wedding Crashers,
but just insert juice, waffles, or hotdogs in place of meatloaf.)
 I am in the land of summer vacation. yay.

I actually contemplated shutting the blog down or taking a break, but I realized that was dumb because I really do enjoy it and I would miss you all too much, and I think the past few months already qualify as a break.  I had been starting to feel like all I was doing was apologizing for not being here and quite frankly I have been so uninspired lately.  I hate to throw a post up for the sake of posting.

And another big reason I can't stop is because I get shit done around the house because of it.  You keep me accountable!  Which brings me to my summer "To DO" list.  It has been months since I lifted a paint brush or sewed a pillow, so its about time I got my ass in gear and did something.  This might be a record for the longest break of paint fumes- lets refocus & bring the crazy back!

So we are starting it off with the "Mother of all Things I have said I would (do but haven't done yet):


Yes, it REALLY is happening.  I am not blowing smoke, its for reals. The hubs finally said "Fine, do whatever." after years of opposing it. We actually almost moved (again) a few weeks ago -(long story) but it sent us into panic mode thinking about all the crap we needed to fix around the house if we did go to sell.  We are now staying, and we are gonna address our scary list.
So, dated cabs- I want BRIGHT, I am so sick of the dark fake walnut.  This task will take a while since its all me, but the paint has been ordered.
I will need to scrub everything with TSP, take the doors off, paint paint paint, design some kickass O'verlays for some of the doors and decide on a great wall treatment.   The scrubbing and painting part is going to kill my ADD side, but I will need to do it in stages and find other projects (distractions) to bounce to...


This room took a major beating the winter before last and had water damage.
We barely use it because of that, so it needs to get fixed.  I am changing the floor up ASAP because it took a beating...

and I am tired of my crazy floor and need to go with something more neutral.   I just want to soften the whole thing up.  I'll chat more about this room when I get a better clue.


No pictures please. It sucks in there and has been half finished for 3 years.
No clue. I am a hot mess in that department.
Just tell me what I should do.


Doing it again. This time I will be better prepared.
Going all Ninja Stealth.
or something like that.
I am actually just really excited because its one of those things I do for myself,
and get to share the experience with others (my husband and niece run this too).


I am going to get all deep here.
Since starting the O'verlays venture almost a year ago life has gotten crazy.  I work around the clock, and a lot has gotten sacrificed- including this blog and friends.  I joke about my kids interruptions, but it really should be the other way around.
I interrupt their time with "gotta send an email, etc." and I miss out on so much because of work.

They let me know when they need me and when I am face first in the computer too much. So does my husband.  I have neglected them way more than I should, and they have patiently supported me (and have grown to despise fretwork.)  I owe them so much, and I need to get better about balancing my schedule and going off the grid when we have family time.  I can go on here, but I think any of you that work and have a family know what I am talking about.  It isn't easy, but something always has to give.
Time is all we have, and you don't get it back once its gone.

Any advice from those of you that have mastered this area is welcomed.
I do know that just making this post has helped to focus me and respark  my mojo.
Thanks for listening.

Get ready, because I am back people!



Dreaming of...

I have been dying for the rain to end so I can get outside.
My little gardens are in desperate need of weeding, and I am actually looking forward to doing it.  
I came a cross this beautiful garden sitting area and just wanted to share.
What I love most is the simple "x" trellis deer fence.
This led me to the slippery slope of Google and I somehow found myself in "London Gardens".
Maybe its because of the cool, gray climate I've been getting accustomed to, 
but they make it seem so damn cheerful and trellis packed.
I found myself wanting to make travel plans.
 The Garden Bed & Breakfast has some amazing spaces (above and below)...

And for those of you looking for a time suck check out London Perfect.
A site filled with rentals and some amazing spaces...

Since a vacation to London is  not in the cards I think I will channel that energy and money into a load of pea stone, some boxwoods and new gardening gloves. 
What are your weekend plans?


Related Posts with Thumbnails