Thursday, January 17, 2013

Kitchen and Laundry Room Makeover

Just wanted to share a few befores and afters with our kitchen and laundry area so far.  In our house, these areas are teeny-tiny and all kind of in one big room.  Eventually, I'd like to put up a wall between the two but for now, these two rooms just have to live happily together.  Now granted, in the long run I'd like to completely gut the kitchen and laundry area, add all new cabinetry with smooth-sliding drawers and doors, a fancy stainless french-door-bottom-freezer refrigerator, dishwasher, nice front loading washer and dryer, built in microwave, upper cabinets, granite counter tops... you know, the works.  But for now, since we're on a not-so-huge budget, I decided to just go with paint and some open shelving.  Overall, I think it made a pretty big impact on a pretty small budget!

The walls in both rooms started out like the rest of the house: boring builder's beige.  I wanted to liven them up with some fresh colors.  Here are a few before pics and you can see how the kitchen opens up into the laundry area.

Anyway, I decided to go with a cool blue for the laundry area.  The color spoke to me... as in, it's actually called "Clothesline Fresh" so after seeing that, it basically HAD to go in my laundry room.  It only took a couple hours to paint the laundry area.  It really brightened up the room and makes it feel a lot more open and airy.

The kitchen, however, was not so simple.  I wanted a pale lime for the kitchen walls.  You wouldn't think that lime is such a hard color to pick out, but for me it was.  I picked out several samples at the store and none of them were right.  They were either waaay too bright, too minty, or just too something.  So I ended up painting this room twice.  That's right... twice.  And I don't enjoy painting.  Anyway, I finally ended up with a color that I like.  It brightens up the room without looking like a highlighter threw up on the walls, which is what it looked like after the first go-round. (It's hard to tell in these pics, it looks more green in real life.)

On a whim, I also decided to paint the kitchen cabinets a olivey-gray color (the same color that's on my living room walls).  It helps tie the rooms together and keep the flow of the colors in the house more cohesive.  And it also helps to camouflage any smudges or fingerprints much better than the original white paint.

Since both of these spaces are really small, I needed a lot more storage.  There were no cabinets above the washer & dryer or above the oven, so I had Daniel make some shelving for me.  He actually designed and built custom brackets for my shelves.  (It's handy having a husband that's an engineer in a metal fabrication shop) They look like tree branches, which is sort of a theme in our house.  We added the shelves over the washer and dryer and also in the kitchen, so again, that sort of ties the two rooms together.


I really like how it turned out.  Now both rooms live nicely together.  There are a few things that still need to be done, like changing out the boob light in the kitchen, and ADDING A DISHWASHER (yes, please!) and making a cabinet for the refrigerator, but overall, I can live with it for now.





Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Green with Envy

When I first started this blog, I declared that when we moved to our new house, I would have a lime green door.

This was my inspiration:

Here's what we started with: (this pic is from our first tour of the house before moving in)

I really liked the door, but I was dying to get a few coats of paint on it!  After TONS several different trips to the paint store, purchasing 5 different samples of lime green paint, and after hours of agonizing over which lime green to use,

I finally just dumped all five colors together with my leftover kitchen paint (which was a lighter shade of lime green) and got to work.  I started by lightly sanding the door to get off the shiny finish that was on it, to get off any oily grime from fingerprints, and and to sand down and smooth out the 3 paint swatches I had painted on it that you see above.

I also taped off the glass and the hinges so that no stray paint would end up there.  Then I got busy painting away with my custom mixed lime green paint!

It took two full coats to get the door completely covered.  Our green ended up a little lighter than my inspiration door, but I like the way it came out.  It blends nicely with the cool blue on the walls in the laundry room and since you can see the door from the kitchen, it echoes the pale lime on the walls in there as well.

Here's another before and after:

Definitely much lighter and brighter.  I am no longer green with envy because it's ALL MINE and I love it!  :o)