Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Plaster Stenciling - wall accents on the cheap

I decided to post a few pics of what we're doing around the house during construction.  The pictures are lousy, for some reason everything at the top is slanted (!!) and the color is really off (!!), but figuring out what's wrong w/ the camera is not my department, nor can I zip right out to buy a new one.  Dang, a disposable camera probably would have given me better pictures, but here they are anyway.

I found a great site for plaster stenciling at http://victorialarsen.com/ .  Make sure you go there when you have time to really take a look around.  Wow.  She has some great stuff and step by step directions, reader's project pictures and tips, etc.  I ordered some stencils and had them in a flash!

The plaster stencils are thicker than the craft ones that you get for paints.  And the plaster?  It's just joint compound.  I'm in love with this technique.
The first picture is at the bottom of our stairs, looking up.  The tree is 15' tall.


 The picture above this is the top of the same tree.  This is what you see when you're upstairs.  You can look down over the railing to see the entire tree.  There's another one on the other wall, you can barely see it in the picture.
The picture below shows a pot of 'something' that I freehanded, filled in with joint compound and used a teardrop hand sander to define the edges.  I used a notched trowel for some accent on the pot.
You can also see some 'blocks', walls of sorts.  That was all drawn on, then doped for texture.  Lousy, lousy picture.  The railing really is straight.  You should see the pic I took of the house!  LOL  The upper story looks like it's close to falling over!

Sunday, December 18, 2011

More progress - Got the library painted!

Bill and I are pretty tired of construction.  I usually can't force myself to do some of this unless the spirit says 'move'.  While Bill and Dan (our oldest son who's back from India) hung some drywall, I got the library painted.




The color is a bit off in the pictures (it's a better brown shade), plus all the pictures I took today have this weird slant at the top.  Bill thinks I was leaning.  :o)  Anyway, I love the ceiling trim.  We used a good grade of plywood for the ceiling part, 1 x 4 on the walls with quarter round below and at the top of the 1 x 4.  In the corners, we used a inside corner trim usually seen for floor trim.  It's just cut down a bit shorter to fit in this space.

The windows are framed with 1 x 4 scrap, plywood scrap for the triangle part at the top, cove moulding on the inside and outside edges of the trim.  You can't see the bit of plaster stenciling on the window trim, but you can barely see some on the first picture - it's at the top of the arch doorway.  Not that you can see what it actually looks like.  :o)

Usually I'm all about using recycled stuff, but this room doesn't have any....yet!  It's probably the only room that I don't have a light fixture for, either.  I snagged up almost every light for this entire house from the clearance aisles of various home improvment centers.  Something will come along.  Anyway, along one of the short walls, the plan is to have short, built in bookcases with doors made from old, double hung windows.  I'd love to have an eggshell mosiac on the top, but I don't think I'll live long enough to complete it.  So I'll come up with something else.

For flooring, I'd like to try messing around with some tempered masonite, doing some kind of simple faux treatment, then a few coats of urethane.  I don't know how much time I'll spend on the flooring design as the bulk of the floor will be covered by a Persian rug that Dan bought for us in Bahrain.

I mixed the paint using brown from another part of the house and some leftover off whites.  I usually hit the oops carts for paint that wasn't mixed the right color.  Most of the paint I have cost $5 to $10 per gallon.  I just mix up plenty for the job, save some in a labeled jar, then use what's left for the next room, adding whatever I need for another shade.

More updates later.