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Sprucing up the Cottage

April 9th, 2018

This past weekend was spent painting & sprucing up our new bedroom, which used to be the office, until we couldn’t get our new bed up the stairs. It was already painted a few years ago, but it needed a fresh coat of paint on the walls and new trim. We walled in the old chimney to keep the drafts from the basement out (along with the spiders). We also moved our favorite little fan down from the old bedroom upstairs.

As home improvement goes, it gets worse before it gets better. There’s a pile of supplies in a corner of the kitchen, the living room is the painting area for trim. The dining room table is overflowing with drywall compound, trowels, painting supplies, and a host of other tools.

It’s nice to freshen things up, especially when it’s spaces you see frequently. We have plans on slowly moving around the house painting things to freshen and clean it up. We’ll put up new light fixtures that cast more light, the house is a bit dark. Slowly but surely, it will start to look cleaner and fresher.

What home improvement projects have you been working on?

It’s a Race

October 20th, 2016

This time of year it’s always a race to get all the chores finished up that still need warm weather. We have been working on replacing our screen door and painting our little entryway. Since the new storm door was a special order, it set our project back by a few weeks. Then came all my traveling and we were behind another few weeks. Now it’s a race to get things painted, caulked, and trimmed out before the weather turns cold. Overall it’s coming right along, most of the painting was completed weeks ago. This is what it looked like before:
I didn’t want to paint around all the nails in the ceiling, so I simply added corrugated metal roofing cut to size to cover it all up.
We painted the walls white and the floor, trim, and doors black. Two new doors were installed, a full glass storm door and a full glass entry door (which was being painted when I took these photos. I purchased a new mat that says “Welcome” and overall it’s HUGE improvement over what was there. Now the entry is clean, bright, and welcoming. Since we go through this space many times each day we decided it was worth the time and money to give it a bit of a facelift.
There are lots of garden chores that need finished up as well, but they can be done after the weather turns cold. Having doors off the house isn’t really a great idea when the days are only in the 40’s. So I can now check this off my list and move on to things like painting the kitchen ceiling, which is the last warm weather needed chore to finish this year.

What are you trying to get finished up before the cold weather hits?

Slowly But Surely

March 29th, 2014

We’re still not quite finished painting the one bedroom, crazy I know. I was telling Mr Chiots that we added two bedrooms, a sitting room and a bathroom in our old house way less time than it’s taken us to simply paint one room here.
Painting bedroom
painting brick 1
I just finished painting the chimney in this room, which was tedious to say the least. The worst part was that one side of it was only three inches away from another wall. I ended up taking the top off of one of my big artist brushes, it took a while.
painting brick 2
Hopefully this weekend I start prepping another room for painting!

Any home improvement projects on your weekend to-do list?

Tedious Trim

February 6th, 2014

The upstairs bedroom redo is coming along quite nicely. The walls and ceiling were painted with three coats of ‘Classic White’ Benjamin Moore eggshell paint and they look fabulous. The trim is being painted in the same color but in a satin paint so it has a bit of a sheen. The goal was a blank canvas and it worked. I’m excited to get the baseboards painted and installed so furniture can start being added.  Those are new wood, simple square pieces that will be painted white as well.
painting trim 1
Meanwhile, I’m still painting the trim. It needed a good sanding first, as it hadn’t received that vital step before being sealed. The result was raised woodgrain that defied being dusted or cleaned. I gave all the trim (along with the walls and ceiling) a good sanding before we got started. I also filled all the nail holes with putty.  Then a few coats of primer were painted on to seal in any stain.
painting trim 3
After several coats of primer, a coat of white paint was added and is still in the process of being added.  Painting moulding is a tedious process and seems to take forever.  All the trim in the room takes me about an hour for each coat.  So far I’ve painted five coats and will most likely do one or two more.  After that I’ll take my scraper to any paint that accidentally made it’s way onto the windows.
painting trim 2
It looks fantastic though, crisp and clean, light and bright – just what I was hoping for. A good cleaning of the windows also helped brighten the room, if you’ve been reading here long you know I how much I appreciate a clean window (each window takes about an hour since I have to take out the storm windows and clean them as well).  I can’t wait to get all the shelves and tables in here along with all my sewing supplies.  Then I’ll be searching for a queen sized bed for guests, hopefully I’ll be able to find something old and interesting from a local antique store.

Has anything tedious been taking up your time? 

A Clean Slate

January 28th, 2014

We finally started painting here, a much needed task indeed. The walls show their long life and aren’t really colors that suite our tastes. For years, we’ve painted colors on our walls, this time we decided things would be different.
painting 1
I have a few boards on pinterest filled with ideas for the home, probably none of them will ever come to fruition, but some of them will inspire changes around here.
painting 2
We wanted to create a blank slate. Everything will be white – classic white, the ceiling, the walls, and the trim. The bedroom was tackled first, it took 4 gallons of paint to cover the blue walls and trim  in this large room.  The floor is painted subfloor and will be painted black.  Hopefully we’ll get a very large seagrass rug that will cover most of it and soften the surface.
painting 3
Funny thing is, we painted this room first because it was  our bedroom and now we’re thinking staying in the smaller room because it’s darker and cooler being on the north side of the house.
painting 4
The nice thing is that now this room is going to become my sewing room and probably a guest room as well. We’re definitely excited to see something finally come together and organized. It’s starting to feel less like a college dorm around here.

What’s your favorite wall choice?

Reading & Watching

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This is a daily journal of my efforts to cultivate a more simple life, through local eating, gardening and so many other things. We used to live in a small suburban neighborhood Ohio but moved to 153 acres in Liberty, Maine in 2012.