A quick bathroom job to give a much needed new look. Linda, the homeowner, had been staring at paint swatches for a few months and we decided on Swimming 6764 from Sherwin Williams. I think it really brightens the room up, along with a fresh coat of ceiling paint.
A new look
This latest house will soon be a listing under Vera Cohen Realty. I have helped a few clients of Vera's over the years and they always seem to sell quick. While there is always talk about which interior colors sell houses, and for higher value, Vera tends to stick with greys. In this house, the color is Cornforth White.
Is it really White?
When you hear the name, you expect to see a white. I see grey. What's even more strange or irritating, is the sample on the Farrow and Ball website shows it to be a cream-like color. Yet, the example photo given shows the color to be nothing like cream. That's grey for you.
Take for example the photo below. It's from the house I just painted. The facing of the header beam is painted as is the main wall to the right. The wall color is grey, while the header is a much lighter grey. The lighting gives it an entire different look, even though they are the same - Cornforth White.
The main thing for this project was to simply give it a fresh feel and look. The original color was what the building contractor had put up. While all the bedrooms and bathrooms were painted, the larger areas were not. Hey, that's what happens when life gets busy and 3 kids are running around.
The overall project involved painting the:
The door and trim paint was done in Simply White by Benjamin Moore. It's an eggshell sheen, but it was at no cost to the homeowner since I had it leftover from a previous job. (normally, a semi-gloss would be used.)
I was given a heads up that there were dogs, cats and chickens. When you live on a road called "Hop City", you have to live up to that name.
When I first walked in the house, I thought the job was going to be removing all the wallpaper. I knew there was a couple of things/areas that the homeowner wanted to have done, depending on overall cost. But, I'm glad removing the wallpaper wasn't one because it was in good shape and thought it went well with the house. The major part of the job turned out to be painting 12 doors and the trim in same areas.
The color we were matching it with was already used in most of the house. Unfortunately, the can was very old and the name was faded. The can had some paint smeared on the side, so I ripped it off and brought it to Colorize to match it. I think it turned out great and wish I knew the original color name.
The crown moulding in the photo below is the color being matched - the doors and trim beneath are the new painted surfaces. The paint is Regal Select in semi-gloss.
Before and After
The first photo shows the old trim color and the some doors looking faded and grainy. The second floor ceiling was also part of the job and needed a few minor repairs. The lighting is dim, so a nice white ceiling helps reflect more light and give a fresh feel.
More to be Done
I'll be returning at some point to finish a hall (photo), fix a hole in the wall, paint a mudroom and maybe some other stuff?!
And when I return, I'll have these two keeping me company.
This project will be for a homeowner whom I did some small jobs last year. She was getting ready to sell her home and was referred to me by her agent, Vera Cohen. Initial needs were just some minor repairs, accent color in shelving areas, creating an accent wall in entry, a bathroom ceiling, and painting new trim work. After another contractor installed new subway tile in the kitchen, all the little work paid off as the house was recently sold. Now, it's on to the new one!
The New House
The new home is smaller, just over 2,500 sq. ft. I'll pretty much be going through the entire house. Along with painting rooms, the project will also include painting kitchen cabinets, removing wallpaper from 3 bathrooms and the dining area and the usual minor repairs for taping and cracks. (see photos below)
The plan is to start with the cabinets. There is some issues with bathroom ventilation so I suggested using Aura bath & spa paint. Even though it's a matte finish, it'll formulated to withstand moisture and mold. She'll be having her plumber look things over and make any needed repairs, but, using this paint will add extra peace of mind.
Hopefully the wallpaper will come off easy. Luckily, they're not large areas and it was already peeling at the seems. (though that doesn't mean it's loose underneath - that provides an easy starting point)
Overall, it's going to be a fun project. I'm looking forward to making this look and feel great for the new homeowner and kids. Sometimes, doing small jobs - though they are important - don't fully allow me to show the homeowner what I can do. Being such a large job, this is a great opportunity to really help make the space fit their personalities!
(this job is expected to start end of April)
I've painted over wallpaper before, but never pages from magazines. This was a sports wall collage using Mod Podge glue. I imagine it's been up for decades.
The last thing I wanted was a gooey mess to deal with. So my plan was:
So that's what I did. And it turned out great.
Normally, with wallpaper, I would peel top layer off and dampen backing paper. When that begins to bubble - usually 10-20 minutes - it would be easy to scrape off.
My concern with the magazine paper is that, even with an oil primer, it would bubble. The purpose of the oil primer is to seal it so the glue doesn't loosen. Thanks to the suggestion by Linc at Colorize, I used a quick drying primer, and it worked great.
The photo below shows that I was able to dry-scrape much of it off before priming it.
The next thing was to skim-coat the wall. This is what will cover the paper. I used a large trowel and joint compound. Skim-coating can be fun as you are "creating a new wall". A wall like this doesn't take long, but, there is a learned skill to keep compound smooth resulting in as little sanding as possible. I ended up applying two coats.
The photo below is after two skim coats. Even though the finished paint color is white (Distant Gray OC-68), the edges are rough indicating that the wall hasn't been painted yet.
This is the end result. Only one coat of paint was applied. The color, Distant Gray, is a flat sheen using Benjamin Moore's Regal Select brand. The house will eventually be put on the market. Along with this bedroom, the job included another bedroom, mudroom, family room and two bathrooms all using same color.
The homeowner asked me to come back and paint the front entry/stairwell. The color now is a light yellow and will remain that way. She was originally going to just clean the walls, but, giving them a fresh coat of paint really makes an impression.
This job was a referral from another client whose cabinets I just finished the day before. The project here is the result of a kitchen makeover. New floor tiles are being put in (by another contractor) and a new backsplash will be installed by the homeowner. The homeowner also did the concrete counter - but, doesn't have the patience for painting. (lucky for me!)
The cabinets were stained, but with some basic cleaning, sanding, and a good bonding primer will make a good surface for the paint.
The new color will be Grey Mist HDC-21 by Behr. Along with a larger, modern floor tile in herringbone pattern, the kitchen will look ready and updated. The plan is to return and do the kitchen walls and eventually put the house on the market.
As you can see from the photos, the kitchen itself is still being worked on, but the cabinets are done. The homeowner will be grouting the new tile floor and installing a new backsplash. (another contract installed the flooring, but I wanted to add a photo of them because they were chosen from the cabinet color)
Cabinet color = Grey Mist (Behr)
The homeowner had me back a few weeks after to paint kitchen walls, island base and baseboard. The walls were already white so this was more of a freshening up than an actual color change. The new white is White Wisp OC-54.
The island base was originally a dark gray and was changed to Black Raspberry 2072-20.
It's getting to be that time of season...football. And with that, my latest project involved painting a young boys room with the Denver Bronco colors - orange and blue!
The project involves incorporating stripes rather than making walls a solid color, and is 3 colors total. Though there are NFL official team colors, the homeowner chose a different shade of blue while at the paint store. Now that it's on the wall, we both like it. I think it would be great in a water themed room, too...maybe as an accent?
I was referred to the homeowners from Don, one of the owners at Colorize, the Benjamin Moore store in Clifton Park. There was wallpaper on two of the walls - which the homeowner had mostly removed. But, because it was taking so long and mainly being a pain to get off, they called me to finish the rest. They were right...the backing paper was really stuck on there and just coming off in bits and pieces. Luckily, I have a festool sander and dust extractor. After stopping by the paint store to pick up some coarse sandpaper, it came off much easier...and was all sucked up!
I haven't done these types of jobs (stripes) often, this is only my second, so it's refreshing to have to put some thought into the work. And, it's one of the reasons why I do this work - every job is different - every new call I get is a mystery!
The striping pattern is laid out as blue on top, linen white, orange, linen white, then blue at bottom. Though I'll be using the yellow Frog Tape, which is for delicate surfaces, I still wanted to wait at least 24 hrs for the freshly applied paint to dry. Above, shows the finished look of the blue. I did apply the orange, which will be in the middle, but have no photo. Tomorrow, I will finish and post the finished photos!
Ceiling: Ultra flat ceiling paint, Benjamin Moore
Blue: Downpour Blue 2063-20 (eggshell, Regal Select)
Orange: Festive Orange 2014-10 (eggshell, Regal Select)
White: Linen White OC-146 (eggshell, Regal Select)
When I first began painting on my own, I used what was/is popular at the home improvement store, which was usually Behr. And, when I was employed at some apartment complexes, Troy Hills and Eastwyck Village, I used what the contractors used or what my supervisor bought - Glidden or Passonno paints.
With Behr, I didn't care for it's smell and how thick it was. A thick paint doesn't mean it's going to cover or hide better, unless it's a specialty coating, like elastomeric paint - but that's not what you would normally use in your home. And Glidden never seemed to hide or be durable.
I will note that, at business or commercial settings, high grade paint isn't usually purchased. What's used in "contractor" grade - good enough to get color on the walls. This is the same for roller sleeves or some brushes - they're not made to be used over and over or for long lasting ability.
I also want to note that I haven't used every paint brand out there. It's not that I don't want to try them, but, this brings me to why I use Benjamin Moore - it goes on easy and works consistently well. So, if a product is working well on a continuous basis, I'm not too inclined to try and test others.
My 3 Reasons
There are a few key factors why I like using BM paint.
Benjamin Moore Brands (quick overview)
BEN - BEN is what they call their low end premium. The paints lower would be the contractor grade paints. I rarely use the BEN brand.
Regal Select - Regal Select is what I use for most jobs and is the mid-range grade.
Aura - The Aura brand is their high-end paint. I have used this a few times and enjoyed working with it. The pigments are richer and it has it's own color collection. The paint actually covers about 10% more area, which can be a benefit.
Aura Bath & Spa - Aura Bath & Spa is formulated in a matte finish (sheen) for high humidity. I have used this and is a great option for those who don't want a glossy look on bathroom walls.
Natura - Natura is certified asthma and allergy friendly. This was the primary paint I used for the Stockbridge farmhouse. Worked great with no shortage of workability.
Advance - The Benjamin Moore Advance paint is formulated for cabinets, furniture, trim, etc. I have used this numerous times with terrific results.
It's now February of 2018. I've been using this bulb nearly every day and really like the light it gives off. There is a brief warm up when first turned on, but, only a few seconds.
Is it worth the price?
Probably not. I'm sure it uses the Tesla Technology as a way to increase price. And, reading another review how the bulb contains tiny bit of mercury is a turn off. (no pun intended)
The best thing about it, it fed my urge to try something new...with no regrets.
A few days ago I received a coupon for a free gallon of SCUFF-X from my local Herzog paint store. It's a new product from Benjamin Moore that, as the name implies, is formulated to resist scuffing.
Though it's ideal for commercial settings, I think it may be a good choice in certain areas of your home. (kids bedroom, playrooms, foyers, laundry rooms). I'm going to use/test the gallon I picked up in the stairwell of a family owned rental property.
SCUFF-X comes in matte, eggshell, and satin finishes. I decided to get a matte sheen since it's a 100 yr. old home and I like the soft tone mattes give. The color is Windham Cream HC-6, which will brighten up the space.
Though there was no price listed on the shelf at the store, (maybe because they were placed for folks like me with free coupons?) the young girl at the counter stated they were around the $50 gallon range. That may sound like a lot to most people, but if it works as well as shown in the videos below, it's well worth the trouble from having to repaint on a regular basis. (When I worked at the Heritage House Nursing Home as a maintenance tech, I was painting walls every month from wheelchair marks, vacuums, etc. - this product would have been a great investment!)
From my initial tests, I think SCUFF-X held up well. It reduced the marks/visibility of marks by 75% at least. With a retail price ranging in the $50-55, I feel it's worth the investment. (especially if you're planning on getting paint in Regal Select or Aura brand. I also imagine the satin and eggshell sheens using SCUFF-X would work even better, as they would have more of a gloss. (I tested in a matte finish)
Blue Sheep Painting is based in Troy, NY and focuses on providing exceptional interior painting. It is run by Ryan Naylor.