The Thrill of Smooth White Walls

July 29th, 2014

Hello friends, today it’s the weekly update on the remodel, and I have some absolutely thrilling pictures for you, images of a lot of white walls!! Okay not always so exciting but wait! These are not just your ordinary repainted white walls, instead these are completely retextured walls. So long vinyl wallpaper and orange peel texture medley, cue the famous Santana + Rob Thomas hit.

We’re not fans of the orange peel or knockdown textured walls, we love smooth (or even imperfect smooth) troweled walls. We decided as long as we were removing all the popcorn ceilings and vinyl wallpaper that we would go all the way and have the walls retextured so they would be so smooooooth and we hired a crew to help us achieve it.

In the breakfast nook we’ve removed the popcorn ceiling, the funky window treatments, the faded vinyl wallpaper on that back wall and also the ceiling fan.

breakfast nook before

That window on the right leads to a good size side yard with a covered lanai – we have plans to change the window to double doors to blur the line between indoors and out and allow for access to the patio. More on that later, as for now beautiful smooth white walls exist in the space and better baseboards are on their way. Blank canvas! 

breakfast nook after

In the dining room, the popcorn ceilings are gone, so is the light fixture and the window treatments, and the space has been retextured in a smooth Level 5 finish. The carpet leaves tomorrow.

dining room before

dining room after

This was the family room when we began a month ago, since then we’ve removed the vinyl wallpaper on the left wall (hard to see but trust me, it’s there), the Golden Girls valance + vertical blinds, and the brown tile surround on the fireplace. I mentioned in last week’s update our plans to fill the niche above the fireplace and demolish the sheetrock mantel. 

two kinds of flooring

Today, it’s like a breath of fresh air….

family room new texture

We disliked the niche, tile, and position and dimensions of the sheetrock mantel on the old fireplace so we got rid of it.

fireplace 2

   smooth fireplace wall

I was researching contemporary fireplace ideas and a few days ago finally found the perfect inspiration photo. I love the look of this simple mantel and sophisticated tile inset. I have my eye on a few different patterns to achieve a similar look.

tile fireplace


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Quotes with Watercolor

July 28th, 2014

A few days ago was my first visit to a Hobby Lobby here in Las Vegas in search of furniture knobs. I’ve never been to a HL store before, we only have Michaels in my county in California so it was fun to check it out. As I browsed I got the urge to get creative – my daughter loves to paint so we found ourselves in the aisle with all the art supplies…

Watercolor art is de rigueur and admittedly I’m a fan of its use in textiles and prints. I had an idea to create frameable quotes in white lettering with a watercolor brushstroke background so we picked up some brushes, papers, and paints and I experimented with two separate methods.

watercolor diy

At first I wondered if I could achieve the look I was going for with a bleach pen but I never ended up trying it out because I found two alternatives to get the look: liquid frisket and a basic white acrylic paint marker.

white liquid frisket

What is liquid frisket you might ask? I had no idea myself until I read the label, but it’s a peel away masking fluid that retains white areas and prevents paint from adhering to paper. Cool! I thought of my one year old nephew and a favorite book, so I used the frisket to freehand a popular quote from a children’s book.

to the moon with frisket

Once dry I applied a few layers of watercolor brush strokes over the top…

to the moon


to the moon and back watercolor artwork


Liquid frisket peels up off paper like that sticky stuff you find on the back of gift cards…. Make sure to peel it up within an hour or two or it will tend to grab the paper behind it in places, but if you peel it up within 30 minutes of drying it comes off cleanly.

peel liquid frisket


Maybe it’s me but the sensory feeling of peeling off goo to reveal lettering is fun!

name watercolor art

We made this one for my daughter’s friends, it’s a fun way to use casual painted script in combination with watercolor to form a child’s name or a favorite short saying or verse.

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BOTB 7.25.14

July 25th, 2014

Hello friends! The renovation craziness continues this week, we’ve been driving all over this town in search of carpet and window installation quotes. One thing there is no shortage of in this town is shopping, oh my Las Vegas I love you for your abundance of selections… the trick is to narrow down what we’re looking for as quickly as possible to keep this project moving….. much to do! I’ll share more updates next week, so far the updates are progressing somewhat according to plan.

This weekend, Amanda and I bring you another round of our favorite projects spied out among the talented DIY community in the ‘Best of the Blogosphere’ series, tour a dining room remodel at Oh Happy Day.

modern dining room


Build a DIY Wingback Headboard with a step-by-step at All Things Thrifty.

diy wingback headboard


Learn how to cover a wall with fabric (in this case a closet) with Young House Love.

fabric covered wall


Remake an ordinary dresser in the style of a map storage chest with materials and a tutorial by Kristine at The Painted Hive.

dresser makeover


Make your own skinny marble top console with a supply list and how-to at Provident Home Design.

diy marble top console


Craft natural citronella candles to prolong your outdoor enjoyment at Poppytalk.

diy citronella candle


Find more inspirational projects in the latest posts at Best of DIY. If you’d like your project or post considered for a feature, send it to [email protected].

Have a great summer weekend! 


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