7.12.2011

hallway transformation

When we were considering the pros and cons of our house before we bought it one feature that weighed heavily on the con sid was all of the wood-stained trim and doors. I'm not against wood-stained trim in general, but I think that it needs to be done right, and the builder-grade, cookie-cutter version we had around here was not in the "done right" category. It made the hallway feel dark and dirty. This stain color in particular did an almost painfully good job of reflecting dirty yellow tones onto the whole area. Just see for yourself. Yuck!



 I knew from the start that we were going to need to re-paint all of the trim in a nice bright white, but I wasn't sure how to go about it. Of course, I checked out my fave house bloggers, Young House Love, who had conquered wood-stained trim and paneling before with amazing results, but I could find a step-by-step tutorial on their site. It seemed like every site I went too would tell you that it was possible to paint wood-stained trim, in fact dozens of people had actually done it, but no one would tell you exactly how. And without specific instructions I was a little hesitant to take the project on.

So Russia came and went and I came home to stare at breeze through as fast as possible the awful yellowy tones of my hallway again. So we went to the paint store (i.e. Lowes, oh how I love them) and picked up some serious stain-blocking primer and some Olympic no-VOC paint in Ultra White and began the project that would take a full ten days to complete.

We took down all of the doors, pulled sawhorses into the entryway (because painting in the over 100 degree temperatures of the garage was not an option), and started painting. We lived with plastic dropcloths on the floor for what seemed like years and I can't tell you how many times we were thankful that our only "kids" are furry ones that we could throw outside unsuperviesed for hours at a time. I can't even imagine what this project would have been like if we had had to clean everything up every single night. As it was, we fell into bed most nights too tired to think, much less conquer the ever growing mound of dirty dishes. I don't think I've ever eaten so many sandwiches in my life.

But now...it's done. It's white and beautiful and bright. And it was worth all of those long days of work.


Ok, so it's not quite done. We still haven't put the doorknobs back on and the wall need another coat of gray before they will be the right shade (the yellowy off-white they used to be is still showing throw this first coat). Still, the white made such a difference. I'm so glad that we didn't quit. The only thing I'm iffy about is the linen cabinet at the end of the hallway. When we took the doors off of it, it looked so great as open shelving that I'm starting to envision putting a custom built-in there. Especially since the cabinets now are so narrow you can't fit a regular-sized towel through the openings anyway and there is lots more storage in the laundry room for linens and other odds and ends.

Maybe something like this with a cabinet on the bottom for storing board games, movies, and other fun things.

Yep, I think I need me one of those. Right after I build my bed...you know, so we can stop sleeping on the floor. ;)

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