Thursday, September 20, 2012

There's nothing like a fresh coat of paint

We were pretty lucky when we moved into this apartment a year ago to have most of the apartment painted already, and nice colors at that! It was also pretty great that the previous tenant left us the leftover paint!

That gave me the chance to add a fresh coat of paint in our bedroom last spring. It really needed it. I have no idea what they did in the bedroom, but there were grease and splatter marks all over the place. With the paint being matte, the greasy/splashed bits reflected the light and it was not a pretty sight. I am NEVER buying matte paint...

Here's what I'm talking about:

It was way worse in real life.

It looked like people had spit all over the walls and no matter how much I scrubbed it wouldn't go away. So I painted over it, and that made me SO happy! The way only a new paint job can!

The only room that wasn't painted was the bathroom. I had to do something about that to boost my happy moodlet (a la Sims :) ).

I know the previous tenants had tried at some point but there was a problem with the back wall. I think that wall is made of cement, and for some reason paint keep bubbling and peeling off there. It wasn't even mold or anything... Every year they would try to cover it up again but it kept coming back, they said.

This is what it looked like:

I didn't take a closer picture of it. I know it kinda looks like it was spackled and then not covered up, but it was worst than that.

When we moved in, my dad took a look at it, and said we could just spackle over it, prime and paint. So that's what we did, first thing when we moved it. I still wanted to wait some time to see if it would come back or what.

Finally, a year later, it hadn't come back (much). There was a bit of crackling in some spots, but really not that bad. I did patch it up with a little bit of spackling. And then I could paint a color I liked!! It was white before... way too blah for my taste!





I knew I wanted a blue, and it had to match with the shower curtain, which was the only color in the room. I had these paint swatches on the corner of the wall for almost a year.



I couldn't decide which shade I wanted. I also wanted to look around and see if I could find a better color. In the end I went with my original paint swatch, in the lighter color (Sky High Blue on the right second from bottom), cuz when in doubt always go with the lighter color, it'll be darker on the wall. I'm so happy I didn't go darker!!

I did everything in 1 day. And by everything I mean spackle some more, sand it, prime it and finally paint (probably twice).

I think I went a little spackle crazy... First, I'm still learning, and it's never good after the first spackle and sanding, and I kept finding new spots I wanted to make better. In all, I spackled 5 times! And for some reason I got obsessed with doing it behind the toilet, which was really not easy (4 below)!! But I noticed that area every time I brushed my teeth, cuz the toilet is a little further from the wall than normal.



I removed the switch plate and did a little bit of "surgery" around it (1), cuz people over the years never removed it to paint and it was like buried around layers of paint... I also removed the towel ring beside/in front of the mirror, which peeled a lot of paint (2). We installed a towel bar when we moved in, on the bare wall, so it felt redundant. Annnd I removed the towel hooks on the door. Again with the towel bar they weren't needed, and they were just an eye sore, cuz they were loose and people had previously painted around it too so it was super uneven.

I had seen this trick on Pinterest where they covered the toilet with a garbage bag to protect it. I have no idea what size garbage bag they used, but mine weren't big enough! So I had to use 2... (3).

I had already repainted all the trim and door of the bathroom white a few weeks back, so I made sure to tape everything up so that I wouldn't mess it up.



For a tiny little bathroom, there is a LOT of trim to tape up. There's the normal door trim and bit around the toilet, but the biggest and weirdest trim is around that big window (which is just a chute in the middle of the building to aerate the bathroom so it doesn't get moldy since there is no ventilation), but also all around the medicine cabinet. There isn't much wall left after that, really...

I was also prudent and put a drop cloth over the sink, toilet and bath. I'd rather do that and go crazy while painting rather than having to be super careful while painting. That's just my preference.

While painting the first coat, I thought it had awesome coverage and I wouldn't need to give a second. But after it had dried I knew it needed an other one, there were still some white dots showing through. So the second coat went up at 10pm. I was rather exhausted at that point.

I finished removing all that tape the next day. I didn't really care if it would lift the paint, but it didn't much! Still have a couple touch ups to do though, where it did peel off bad.





I LOVE the color! We barely get any natural light in here, so I'm glad I went with one of the palest colors. It's a little darker in real life, I think, and a tiny bit less green.

If you noticed that that little basket on the toilet used to be on my laundry shelves, then you get 2 brownie points!! It was way too short on the laundry shelves, but it works fabulously here, and adds a bit of much needed texture!

You know what my boyfriend said when I asked him his opinion on the color? He said it was too much a girly color. Blue, girly?! And an almost baby blue, girly?! Whatever, that is why I don't ask his opinion beforehand. If it were up to him, all the walls would be bare and white, and minimal furnishing. I just can't do that. He "complains" for a day then let's it go. He knows it makes me happy :)

So the next step was figuring out the accent colors. I had a hard time with that one. I don't have a lot of space to put accent colors, but I would like to put an other painting maybe (that I'd do myself), and paint the soap dispenser, toothbrush holder and garbage can. And anything else I so wish to add ;)

After a couple of days I had an idea, but I wasn't totally sure it would work. So I went to the CIL website (that makes the color I picked) and played around with their color coordinator. After picking my Sky High Blue, they gave me a choice of 5 different moods. I was relieved to see my idea was one of those choices, confirming that I'm not crazy!



Which one do you perfer, and can you guess which one I like best? I'm not gonna tell you right away, cuz I like to surprise you! And I want to know your unbiased opinion!! I'll reveal my accent colors when I do my first decorating project.

So this is where I stand with the bathroom makeover
Before
After





And here's the To-Do list for this room, with stuff that's been done/ changed crossed off:
~ Change the toilet seat(it was wobbly, and for 10$, it was an affordable upgrade)
~ Add a plug (I'll never understand how bathrooms here don't have plugs)
~ Add a towel bar
~ Remove towel ring
~ Remove hooks on door
~ Paint trim and door white
~ Paint walls YAY!!
~ Wash floors (in progress); seriously, when I show you the before and after picture, you will understand. I'm spending 10 minutes PER TILE to scrub as hard as I can and remove the embedded dirt. About 5 tiles left, of 19.
~ Recaulk around toilet, sink and tub (in very beginning stages); Whoever did the caulking job was horrible at it. It's unbelievably uneven and not smooth. I need a better way to remove the old caulking to continue.
~ Lay down new tiles? I must ask the concierge if the owner would pay for the 20 tiles I would need to redo the bathroom, or if I just do it anyway, it wouldn't be expensive and would be the best upgrade ever, and I could stop scrubbing!!
~ Add a piece of melamine to hide the space between the wall and the vanity.
~ Get something to hide the electrical cording my dad installed for the plug.
~ Patch up the ceiling; wasn't sure how to go about doing it, so will ask my dad this weekend
~ Decorate!!

And yes, this is a rental apartment. I figure the owner can't get mad at me for making things look better, right? Not that he would ever notice since we've only ever dealt with the concierge...

Do you think I'm crazy for putting so much work into a rental apartment? Especially in renovating the bathroom? We've been here 2 years, and planning on staying for an other 2 years. It gives me good practice for when we will have our own place.




I party at these parties.

3 comments:

  1. I love it! J and I are in the process of picking a blue for our bedroom and ensuite, which needs to be painted this fall. I totally get decorating a rental. If you're going to live there, you might as well love it.

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  2. The blue is perfect...definitely not girlie :). I love it. And, you may as well make your home (rental or not) a place that makes you happy...keep painting :)

    ReplyDelete
  3. I haven't seen any recent posts, lately...are you busy working your to do list :)

    ReplyDelete

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