The painted kitchen

Waaaay back in July when I said I was hoping to paint the kitchen on the long weekend… I did! GASP!

And I’m just getting to blog about it now.

I managed to work in the prep and painting between all of Harrison’s naps. Thank goodness he’s a good sleeper.

My dad is meticulous about painting and taught me his method, so I always use the same steps. There’s a joke in my family about how my dad only lets my mom paint the inside of closets. I’m not sure how she got this reputation, but I’m not sure she minds because she doesn’t have to do the painting.

Before getting to “Dad’s Step One”, I grabbed my supplies including a new drop cloth and a new brush for trimming that I learned about courtesy of John and Sherry at Young House Love. It’s the Premium XL Tight Spots 2″ Angle Short Handle Brush. I picked it up at our Sherwin Williams store before this project to see what all Sherry’s hype was about. Verdict: Best brush ever! Hype! Hype! Seriously, though, it’s awesome. It’s so good I even used it without painter’s tape on another project. But I’ll get to that later.

According to my dad’s steps, I always start by removing the light switch plates and outlet covers so that you don’t get paint on them. Then, you need to fill any holes and/or smooth any bumps with some putty. Which I did. I have a great putty that goes on pinky-purple and dries white so you know when it’s dry and safe to sand. Step two is lightly sanding all the walls and then wiping them clean with a damp cloth. (Am I making you proud dad?)

I used Benjamin Moore’s Natura paint which is no-VOC (which I love) but it’s also a great quality paint and since I wasn’t painting over a dark colour I didn’t need to prime before painting. For those of you detailed DIYers, priming would be the next step when required.

Because the kitchen is broken up by lots of cabinetry and windows I worked in sections first painting around the trim/windows/doors and then rolling on the paint. You don’t want your edging to get completely dry before you are able to get to the rolling. I did use painter’s tape for some of the edges around the kitchen since there’s lots of intricate corners thanks to the cabinetry.

Note: If you’re going to sand your walls – which I recommend you do- wait until you’ve wiped them down and then wipe down your baseboards before you put on your painters tape because your sanding will kick up dust that will fall on your baseboards or on your painters tape, and if you don’t wipe it down it’ll just get all mucked up in your brush.

It didn’t take long to get all the way around. The longest part was doing all the trimming around the bay window.

Here I am hard at work looking uber-glam in my painting duds.

The long bulkhead above the railing was the easiest part because I just took the roller to it. I was sooo close to getting the job done with just one quart of paint, but I had to send husbandman out for more paint to get the job done. I opted to get a full gallon for future touch-ups.

This is what the kitchen looks like now, all Stone Hearth-ed up and looking spiffy!

You can see why this is a one-day job. The backsplash eliminates wall space that would otherwise be painted. This is easily an afternoon job if you don’t have to feed a baby every couple of hours. The photo below shows more clearly the colour change. The green (below the bulkhead) is what the kitchen was before.

The grey/brown, or “greige” if you will, that you see above looks great in the photo, but in real life it was still taking on a greenish tint. I think because of all the green that you can see from outdoors through our windows and the green in the adjacent foyer/hallway and living room the rest of the kitchen was looking green. This little nook is my favourite part of the kitchen because it shows the colour truest. I would just stare at this tiny strip of wall and smile. I want to marry this wall.

And here’s a view of the bulkhead. Sorry about the shadows and the ombre effect. We don’t get much direct sunlight in the kitchen at any time of day so it’s hard to take a good shot of the length of this wall.

I really love the way it turned out especially because it was such an easy way to update the kitchen and begin to put our stamp on this house. We are no longer living in pea soup! In fact I loved it so much that about a month later I decided to paint the foyer!

Oh snap! Twist ending. Good thing I decided that we should go with an extra gallon of paint.

Here’s a photo of the foyer before from the real estate photos before we moved in:

And here’s what it looks like now with Stone Hearth.


You can see from the picture above just how green the green was. I’m really loving the new colour and think I might even carry the colour up the stairs and into the landing area outside the bedrooms for continuity’s sake. The foyer project took no time at all. Again I just hammered painted it out while Harrison was sleeping with a little help from Rolly. And as I alluded to earlier I didn’t use painter’s tape for going around the trim. I just used my steady hand and my new best friend the Tight Spots brush.

The foyer project brought a few more things to our attention. The first being that we don’t like the light fixtures in the foyer. So we’ve since been on the hunt for a new foyer light and sconce. You can see in the first “after” picture the bare light box where the sconce once was. We’ve been living like that since I painted back in August. Oy… we need to find something soon. Even as I type this though, I think we’re getting closer because I found a couple options online that the hubs thinks are suitable contenders. To the lighting store I go!

Also, we have a very ugly doorbell. We painted it Stone Hearth so that it would blend in with the new colour (just as the previous owners had done with the green) but it still shows it’s brass innards and I’d like to have something a little sleeker. If I don’t find a suitable replacement I might have to spray paint the brass with something shiny.

All of our light switch plates and outlets are a yellowy cream colour or a very shnazzy brass and it’s not the look I’m going for so eventually I’ll switch those out too throughout the house.

And finally, I think our door hardware could use a good coat of oil rubbed bronze spray paint just to freshen it up a bit. It’s looking kinda tired.

I saw a photo on Pinterest (originally here) and have been using it as my foyer inspiration.

The colour on the walls is Benjamin Moore’s Revere Pewter and I compared the two colours in my handy fan deck and they’re almost identical.

So to recap, the kitchen to-do list is getting shorter. What I’d like to do to polish it off is:

  • Sell the glass table/chairs set on Kijiji (already posted) and replace with something else – maybe round with 4 chairs?
  • Find a rug for under the new table
  • Add a bench for additional casual seating for when we’re entertaining and sitting in the kitchen
  • Add more red accents in the kitchen. Art for the bulkhead; maybe DIY a utensil holder
  • Consider change the cabinet hardware and faucet.
The foyer to-do list is somewhat longer, so I’ll go into more detail about that in a future post.
Phew! That was a long one. What do you think? Like the colour? Anyone else no longer living in pea soup or any other kind of soup for that matter? Do tell.

9 thoughts on “The painted kitchen

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    • Hi Claudia,

      I love the brush because it’s got a good “grippy” handle and the handle is nice and short so you really can get around your trim and corners easily. I also like the brush because of the smooth bristles (I think they’re synthetic – not natural) which I think helps the paint go on smoothly.

      The brush also has just the right angle.

      It’s the only brush I’d use for going around trim/ceilings or other “tight spots”!

      If you try it out, let me know what you think!

  7. Pingback: Kitchen starting point | to london with love

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