Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Painting Cheat

First, thank you everyone for all of the wonderful compliments. It was a lot of work and in less than 2 weeks (whew!), but it's all worth it, now. I love my new dining room, I love having that room open and accessible again with light shining in from the window, and I can't wait until we sit down to our first dinner in there. Of course, I may never get up …

Next, while it's still fresh in my mind, I thought I'd share a little tip for "painting" around existing crown and chair rail. The gist of the hint is … don't. ;-)

Until the dining room, all of the crown we've done in the house has been new and installed *after* we painted the walls. But in the dining room, the house came with the crown and chair rail and we were not planning on removing it all before painting, although we did remove some before the new wall was built and in the end on this project removed almost 3 walls' worth of crown because it really needed a good sanding and cleaning up. But for what was left, that meant that the "line" of red paint butting up next to the white trim was going to have to be perfect because of the high contrast. I'm a really, really straight painter but the job was proving to be a major headache because 34-year old caulk is bumpy and thus very hard to paint so that it turns out looking straight. I mean, technically, the painting *was* straight but it didn't look like it. Ick.

So, I stared at the source of my headache for a while and came up with another plan. We'd add a row of narrow trim just under the crown and just above the chair rail. We would paint the new trim white while it was off the wall and then paint the wall with red very close to the existing trim line but not all the way up to it. The new trim would then cover up those bumpy old caulk imperfections and the transition from red to white.

This photo shows the new, fluted trim under the crown molding:

This photo shows the original chair rail, before we started painting:

And this photo shows the same wall now finished and with that same narrow fluted trim just above the old trim:

It all looks like it's always been there, doesn't it? It was wonderful to relieve myself of that headache! I love it when a plan works, especially since we've had quite a few "learning experiences" in this house. Anything to make this job easier is good in my book.

Yesterday I got my hair cut and did the grocery shopping. Two more things crossed off the pre-guest list. Today I'm going to spend the morning cleaning and then after lunch I'm going to cut out the dress. I have to get to the airport by 6 PM, so that gives me a few hours to do the cutting and maybe even start sewing. Hopefully my next post will be truly sewinig-related.


  1. Fantastic idea! I would never, ever have guessed there was a separate piece of trim. Enjoy your sewing time. It'sexactly when is the big day? Graduation day?

  2. Ugh computers! Sorry about the previous post.

    It was suppose to say...

    Enjoy your sewing time. It's well deserved. Exactly when is the big day (graduation day)?

    It's definitely wayyy past my bedtime. :-)

  3. As always, everything looks fabulous. You inspire me! That tip on the molding is priceless. I hope I do half as well when I begin the sewing room flooring project (which is still a couple of months away--gotta find a home for the double bed in that room before I begin.)

  4. That's a really cool tip, Debbie. I am not sure I wouldh ave ever thought of that.


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