Sticky, Tricky Fun: Painting a Chalkboard Wall

Chalkboard Wall Final RecipeI’ve yearned for a chalkboard wall FOREVER – admiring them in magazines, *pinning* them, and generally salivating anytime I see a gorgeous wall o’ chalk, especially out and about at restaurants, where they’re often oversized and detailed with the most beautiful  colors, images, and calligraphy.

My yearning deepened last year when I was homeschooling Mighty O in the Waldorf method, where chalk drawing is a central tool in exploring fairy tales and traditional rhymes with young children. We had so much fun with chalkboard artistry involving gnomes, fairies, golden geese, and so many other magical creatures.

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Whitewashing Honey Oak Kitchen Cabinets: The Process Begins!

 

Of all of the projects on my to-do list, this one Kitchen Beforehas been the most daunting: how to paint the honey oak cabinets and island AND extensive trim in our kitchen for a more updated style that matches our light-and-white French country-inspired cottage decor.  

I previously painted the large family room built-ins solid white, and the process was very time consuming. The result is beautiful, so it was worth it in the end – though at about 3 times the cabinetry, I have not been excited about the prospects of tackling the even bigger project of the kitchen.  Needless to say, this project has since been on the back burner…   Continue reading

Breathing New Life into an Old Cabinet: How To Create a Distressed Paint Finish

Hutch Top FinalAt our last house, storage was at a premium.  We made a significant downsize to take advantage of a rare, gorgeous wooded lot with a creek and waterfall (in Texas!), and it was taking a lot of creativity to sort out where and how to put things in our new home.   We also wanted to ensure that our nice collection of heirloom dishes wasn’t just stashed in a box in the garage… which is where it was until we could squeeze some more space out of our place.  So I trolled craigslist for a couple weeks, in search of a large, solid wood hutch to place in the dining room. Continue reading

Quickest Update for an Outdated Fireplace

Family Room Fireplace Work Set UpIt seems too obvious now, but in all my DIY-ing about the house, this quick and easy fireplace update took quite a lot of consideration to figure out.  What was it?  Painting the old, outdated shiny ’80s brass fireplace door surround – fast, cheap, and looks SO much better!

We started out with this giant built-in bookshelf/wall surrounding the family room fireplace in that go-to late-1980s/early ’90s builder-grade honey oak cabinetry and shelving.  The wood is in great shape, and solid, though it strikes me why such a significant wall unit would be custom-made in a builder-standard style like this.  I never remember this finish being “all the rage” – it just seemed like what every builder put in every new kitchen and bathroom at the time…  it was everywhere.  Oy vey.   Continue reading