Here We Go (Painting) Again

Wow it just feels like I haven’t posted in a while. Between the weather and general life we haven’t really finished anything that we’ve been working on. Finally last week I finished something! It took me all of the weekend before last and a good portion of nights after work last week but I’m finally done.

After I finished painting the last round of spaces (pantry, closets and powder room) I thought I would take a bit of a break until the Acro Pure paint went on sale which I was hoping would happen sometime in the summer. Well It just so happens that the paint went on sale at the beginning of April and I just couldn’t resist grabbing some more while it was on sale.

This time around I went with the guest room because I was hoping to test out a couple of colors on a room that would be relatively easy to paint. Even though I tested out the colors in the powder room I still decided to do a couple of test swatches of the two colors I wanted to use.

Both colors are actually shown in the Paint Wall Colors tab and of course they are from Martha Stewart again.

Guest Room Painting 17

So before we get started here’s a reminder of what the room looked like before I started painting.

Guest Room 3

Chris helped me to move everything out of the room and take down the roman shades and the closet shelf.  I did a few calculations on space and ended up buying 3 gallons of paint to cover all the walls and the vaulted ceiling. I purchased two of the gallons in flagstone and  one in Zinc and I got to work.

Guest Room Painting 2

I started with the Flagstone Grey since I planned on painting most of the walls and the ceilings this color. I went with an eggshell sheen just like I did with the closets and pantry.

Guest Room Painting 1 

Since I was pretty much painting by myself I worked wall by wall. I started by painting the edges of one wall and then filling in with the roller. This was the first time in this house that I’ve using the extension pole with the roller and I found it was so much easier to paint with.

Chris did come part way through and helped to do the rolling on the closet wall as well as start painting the ceiling. Once I was done with the rest of the edges I took over with the ceiling painting. It was definitely nice to have the pole for this and not have to move around on the ladder.

Guest Room Painting 4

Here it is after I painted all the flagstone on everything but one wall. I didn’t have to do a second coat on the edges but just for safe measure I came back with the roller and did a second coat on everything I could. I probably could have just touched up a few spots but I always seem to have an issue missing spots and I hate finding them much later.

Guest Room Painting 6

When we I really don’t like the color but once it dries is is such a pretty taupe-y grey color that I just love.

Guest Room Painting 7

Once I finished with the second coat of flagstone I switched to working with the darker colored paint in Zinc.

Guest Room Painting 8

Since I had just finished the flagstone I didn’t want to tape off the wall and risk ruining the paint so I decided to try my hand at cutting in with a brush. I watched a few videos online and then just went for it.

Guest Room Painting 5

This was the first time that I’ve ever used a brush to cut in a wall before. It actually wasn’t too hard and although it didn’t turn out perfectly I think it turned out pretty well.

Guest Room Painting 9

Then all I had to do was fill in the rest of the wall with the roller. It took two coats to fully cover the edges this time and of course I did a second coat with the roller as well.

It’s so weird that at night the wall almost blends into the ceiling. Although you can see the difference in color along the walls the ceilings seems to shadow and blend.

Guest Room Painting 10

Although I prepped the closet when I did the rest of the room I didn’t paint it right away because I couldn’t decided on a color. Since I still had sample pots left over I ended up trying both Love in a Mist and Sharkey Grey out and both looked pretty good. I finally decided to use the Love in a Mist since I like it and I already had paint left over from the pantry and closet painting. It really lightens up the closet and brings a nice subtle hint of blue which looks so pretty with the greys.

Guest Room Painting 11

In the natural light it’s a lot easier to see the contrast of the lighter and darker grey. You can even see that great pale sky blue in the closet.

Guest Room Painting 12

I love the way that the one wall is subtly darker and it’s not a shocking in your face contrast.

Guest Room Painting 13

I’m just in love with the new paint colors. It makes the room look so fresh and updated.

Guest Room Painting 14

Once we moved all the furniture back in the room I loved the paint color even more. I love the look of the darker wall behind the bed. Now I just need something to fill in all that empty space. All in good time.

Guest Room Painting 15

Yay! One more room painted. Now that I’ve tested out the colors in a much larger scale I can’t wait to start painting come of the other rooms I’ve been thinking about.

Guest Room Painting 16

Anyone else painting some rooms? Does it feel like it’s taking your forever?

Ruffles and Tucks Pillows

This past weekend I was busy working on my pillowcases for the guest room. I finished them this weekend and I’m excited to have another thing on the Git ‘R Done list checked off.

You may remember a while ago when I shared the making of the roman shades for the guest room. When I chose the fabric for the pillows I decided to use the patterned grey fabric and the blue fabric that I used on the shades. I have also been wanting to add a different pop of color to this room so I chose a coral fabric to go with the others.

I was hoping to keep the pillows a little simpler than the fall living room pillowcases or even the summer pillowcases, but as usual the execution was more than I anticipated. I started cutting out the fabric on Saturday morning and finally finished up the pillows Sunday afternoon. I kept taking breaks and working on other things so they took a little longer than if I had worked on them non-stop.

On a previous trip to Ikea I picked up three 20″x20″ Inner cushions and two of the 14″x14″ Irma cushions with the intention of using them in the guest room. I planned out what I wanted to have each pillow look like and cut out my fabric accordingly. I ended up just cutting each pillow case so that they were 1/2″ larger than the dimensions of the pillows so that when they were finished they matched the size of the pillow.

So here is all the fabric cut out and ready to sew.

Two of the pillows are just plain patterned fabric. I cut one square 20.5″ x 20.5″ for the front and then two rectangles 20.5″ x 12.5″ for each of the back flaps. For the others I cut out a base fabric in the same way. Then I cut strips of the flower pattern to use as the ruffles on the front of the blue and coral fabrics. In theory I cut the grey flower fabric so that the strip was 1.5 times longer than the pillow is was going on. Then I cut it a quarter of the width plus 1″ so there was enough to finish the edges of the strips. Although you will see later that apparently I didn’t calculate well because there were more larger gaps between the strips on the finished pillows than I was originally hoping.

Just like the last set of pillows I started by serging all the open edges. In this case is was one edge per back  piece and both of the edges for the ruffly strips.

Then I turned the serged edges twice and sewed them down to create a small hem.

With the edges finished I quickly made up the two large grey flowered pillowcases since they were the easiest. They went together fast.

Then I started working on the smaller coral ruffly pillows. First I ironed the strips of fabric for the ruffles in half, to have a line to follow to sew on.

Then using the biggest stitch on my machine I just stitched down the fold.

Next I started placing the ruffles and gathering the strips of fabric on the front piece of the pillowcase.

This was the most tedious part for me. I don’t really enjoy gathering fabric. I am hardly ever happy with how it turns out.

Then once I finished the two smaller pillows I decided to change tactics. This time I iron the background into quarters to help place the strips on. Then instead of gathering the strips I decided to make tucks in them instead.

I changed the directions of the tucks and just randomly tucked the fabric until the ends matched with the end of the pillow case. This was so much faster. I think that if I were to make these over again I would just go with the tucks from the beginning.

After all the tucking and gathering and sewing I tossed them up on the guest bed. You may notice that I recently added a white duvet cover to the bed. It’s the Dvala duvet cover from Ikea. It may be plain and boring right now but I’ve got some future plans for it.

I think the size of pillows works well with the bed. One more small step made in the saga of the guest room and so many steps still to come.

Here’s a close up of what the pillows look like.

I was hoping that with the grey pattern and the blue that the pillows would look a little more masculine than feminine. I knew that the coral was a big stretch but I wanted to bring in another color to the room that would be cheery. Now I’m afraid that I’ve just made this room really feminine. So sorry in advance any man that has to come and stay in this room. You can go ahead and hide the pillows in the closet. 🙂

Until then I will enjoy them on the few occasions that I walk by the room. I love the mix of colors and patterns and I can’t wait to work on something else for this room.

Anyone else making a a guest room girly and frilly in hopes of making your male guests uncomfortable?

Roman Shade Tutorial (Part 2)

Part 1 explains how I sewed my roman shades. This part is about how I assembled and hung the curtains.

After I finished attaching the velcro to the top of the shades, I turned them inside out again and slipped in all the battens (cut to size) into the slots in the curtain. I also slipped one more 1/4″ rod into the bottom hem as specified by the calculator for a weight rod.

Then I turned the shades right side out again.

Before I finished assembling the shade I made the mounting board. I created my mounting board such that the shades could be installed inside the window frame. If you want to mount it another way check out this website for more information. After the 1×2 boards were cut to size I covered them white left over white fabric. Then I stapled a row of velcro along the short edge to as you can see in the photo below.

This next step was yet another place were I veered off the path a bit. I added a second row of velcro on the underside of the mounting board. In the picture below the staples are on the floor side and the first row of velcro is on the top. This strip of velcro I added so that I could later add a panel of black out lining behind the shade.

The last step of creating the mounting board was to add the eye hooks. Chris was helpful here and drilled small starter holes and screwed in the hooks. I added the number of hooks as suggested by this calculator. One on each side about 1″ from the end and then the rest evenly spaced in the middle. Here’s a couple of examples.

Now that the mounting boards is finished and I moved on to marking the shades for where the rings were sewn. I just laid the mounting board on top of the shade and pinned were the hook are. You only need to pin on every other batten starting with the first one, so the last batten will actually have no rings. Only attaching rings on every other batten makes it so that the shade will pleat and lay well when it folds. Trust me on this. Check out Terrell Designs for more information on how the shade works.

Once I had all the ring locations pinned I stitched the rings on the backside of the shade. I made sure that the thread went around the whole dowel and through the front a few times and then secured the ring. TO minimize seeing the thread on the front side I used thread that closely matched the front fabric.

It would seem that with the slots that you wouldn’t need to secure all the way through the front but learn from my advice here. I didn’t catch the front of the shade on every ring on the bathroom shades and they don’t look, lay or pull as well as I think they could have. So this time I made sure to take a small tuck on the front of the fabric so they were all much more uniform.

After all the rings were on, I attached the mounting board using the velcro and strung the pull cord through the rings. I started at the top and laced down the row and then made a tight knot on the bottom ring. Then I cut off the string towards the last batten just so that there would be extra to work with. With the far left strung I moved to the right and strung the next one.

Here’s string number two attached on the shades. Yay they are all assembled! Now all that needs to be done is hang them.

Since we decided that we want to use black out lining but I didn’t want the added difficulty of adding them to the shades. I decided to cut panels that could be attached to the mounting board behind the shades when they are installed. I cut the lining to size and then serged all the edges to finish them. I don’t think it would have frayed but I wanted it to look a little more finished. Then I sewed on a strip of velcro on the top that will mate up with the velcro on the bottom of the mounting board.

With everything together Chris got out the tools and we went to work hanging the shades. These shades were a little easier to hang since they are smaller than the bathroom shades. Chris started by drilling a small starter hole were he wanted to screw through the mounting board to attach it to the window frame.

Then he just aligned the mounting board with the back of the window frame, drilled a pilot through the window frame and then attached the mounting board with screws. As you can see in the photo we pulled the shade off of the mounting board and laid it on the window frame to make the installation much easier.

Then we just attached the shade again with the velcro and installed the hook we bought similar to what we did on the bathroom shades. This ensures the strings will pull past the shade fabric and won’t bunch the pleated shade.

So here they are! Pulled all the way up. After they were all installed I braided the pull cords, added a cord pull to the end and installed the cord cleat on the window frame. They are pretty simple steps but for more info check out the website.

Here’s what they look like when they are down. I was afraid the flower fabric would be too overwhelming and feminine, thus the reason for the grey on the outside windows. I like how they came together and the way they turned out.

In this shot you can see the blackout lining in the top window. It doesn’t look so pretty but it does the job and it’s removable when we don’t have guests. There are also panels that go in each of the lower windows they just aren’t shown here.

Here’s what the shades look like from the outside when they are pulled up.

Roman Shade Up Outside

What the shades look like down from the outside.

Roman Shade Down Outside

Whew. The End.

Don’t forget to check out how I sewed the shades if you missed it.

Roman Shade Tutorial (Part 1)

*This tutorial explains how I sewed my Roman Shades, check back on Thursday (hopefully) on how to assemble and install the shades.  Update: Check out Part 2

I haven’t been very motivated to work on our guest room since we don’t have guests very often and hardly ever go upstairs. So, when Chris’ parents and sister planned on coming for the weekend it was just the push I needed to do something with the guest room. The first thing on my list was to add curtains that would block incoming light  and provide privacy for our guests. Just as with the bath room curtains I considered a few different options for window coverings but in the end I decided that the look I really wanted was roman shades. I liked that they could add some color and pattern to the room without being overwhelming.

So here’s how I made my roman shades. Hopefully this will help me to remember how I did them later and maybe it will even help someone else too.

For reference the windows I covered are measured 16 3/4″ x 52 1/2″ and 34 3/4″ x 52 1/2″. It is really important to measure really well. Here is a picture of the windows I am working with:

The first thing I did was determine how much of each item I would need by using this calculator on the Terrell Designs website. Then I purchased and gathered my supplies along with a few tools I needed.

Engineering A Home: Roman Blind Supplies

This is the breakdown of the cost of my supplies for reference:

Fabrics for Outside: $30.20
Lining Fabric (white cotton): $19.15 (40% of coupon)
Rocloc Blackout Lining: $9.60 (50% off) (didn’t use inside the curtains)
Plastic Rings: $3.59
Cord Pulls: $2.58
Cord Cleats: $7.47
Velcro: $3.96
Thread:  $4.59 + On Hand
Cording: $4.99 (ended up using left over on hand)
1/4″ Dowels: $13.72
Eye Hooks: $2.36
1×2 Board: $3.12
Staple Gun: On Hand
Staples: On Hand
1 1/2″ Screws: On Hand
Drill: On Hand
– $5.00 off coupon
Total: $100.33 + tax

Other Supplies on Hand:
Rotary Cutter
Self Healing Cutting Mat
Quilting Ruler
Miter Saw
Drill and Drill Bits
Measuring Tape

Before I started sewing the shades I decided to pre-wash all my fabrics before ironing them. I think this is where I remembered just how crazy this idea was and what it was really like the making the bathroom shades.

Once I had the fabric ironed I folded it along the selvage edges twice to make a nice long strip that could be more easily managed using the rotary cutter and mat. As usual the cats were being really helpful.

Then I cut my fabric according to the sizes specified by this calculator. The only difference I made here was that I cut 2 pieces of lining fabric per shade. This is the reason there is so much white fabric. Oh so very much fabric.

Since I decided to use a few different fabrics together I had to sew them together in order to have each front fabric with a finished size as was specified by the calculator.

The next thing I did isn’t really part of the directions but it allowed me to have finished edges with the later sewn side seams. I serged both the left and the right side as well as the bottom of each front panel.

After serging I folded up the bottom 3″ and again another 3″ and then pinned for the hem. (Note the very helpful cat attempting to pull the fabric down)

Here’s the hem after it was sewn and pressed.

After I completed the front panels I moved on to working on the linings. I serged the left edge of each individual lining (2 pieces per shade). Then I laid both linings on top of each other and serged the bottom and right hand side together. Now I have only three sets of lining, one for each curtain. Each set is connected on the right side and bottom and the top and left are left open for steps later on. After serging the lining fabrics I hemmed the lining in the same way as the front.

I decided that I didn’t really want to glue my battens into the shade so I created a pocket for each batten to slip into. Thus the reason for two pieces of lining fabric for each curtain.

So to create the slots I laid out each set of lining  that I just serged on the carpet and marked out the locations of each batten (also from the calculator). Don’t forget to offset the tape measure so that the lining starts at the 1/2″ marking since the lining will start a half inch above the front. I used an air erase marker to mark out a line for the batten slots.

Once I pinned around each of the lines securely I sewed a line about 1/4″ on either side of each marked line. This created a pocket that was around a 1/2″ wide. After I had sewn a few slots I slipped in a batten to make sure they would fit. I removed them before I moved on since it makes it much harder to sew the rest of the curtain. This is something I learned the hard way the first time around.

From here on I pretty much just followed the directions from Terrell Design’s website.  I  lined up the front fabric and lining with right sides facing together. I pinned and sewed the first side together using a 3/4″ seam allowance. This should be the seam with the finished edge of lining not the one with the open ends of the slots.

Next I lined up the other sides, pinned and sewed along the edge leaving the batten slots open so they could be slipped in later.

It may not be really clear in the picture above be the lining is actually not as wide of the front fabric. This was done on purpose. That way when the two sides are sewn and turned the front fabric will wrap around the side and you won’t end up seeing a seam on the front edge of the curtains when hung.

The last part of sewing the curtains was to finish the top and add the velcro. I laid out the fabrics on the floor and smoothed all the layers out. Then I measured and marked where the top would be accounting for an extra inch to sew on the velcro.

Next I serged the top edge together to finish it off.

Once I serged the top together I turned it towards the back 1 inch, pinned and then sewed on the fuzzy side of the velcro.

Well that’s it for sewing the shades. it actually isn’t quite as difficult as it looks. Unfortunately I realized when I was writing this post that I never took any photos of the curtains once they were all sewn. Whoops, guess you’ll just have to wait for the assembly to see the big revel.

Don’t forget to check out the Terrel Designs website for more instructions and helpful tips.

Also don’t forget to check back on Thursday to see how I assembled and hung my curtains! (Check it out here)

Anyone else out there crazy enough to attempt a method similar to this for a roman shade?