Friday, August 20, 2010

Faux Brick Wall - Faux much fun!

My sons are growing up and we needed to update their room a bit. Brainstorming with my eldest we thought of maybe taking advantage of the fact that they are currently living on the concrete and go with an industrial type feel to their room. We immediately thought of painting a brick wall in their room. A few tutorials on You Tube and promise from a friend later, we started.

First, I painted the walls a grey. This was the undercoat which would eventually show up as the grout. While only one wall would get the brick treatment, painting the rest of the room the same color lended itself to both the industrial look and tied the brick wall into the rest of the room.

Next my dear friend helped me figure out how to put up some paint tape up. (I used the "Scotch Delicate Surface" since I had painted the grey only two days before) It was trial and error. We thought using a laser level would work just fine in getting the horizontal rows even. The wall was so crooked, that the laser didn't go down the whole length of the wall. We ended up finding one point on the wall that was pretty even and we used the laser level for one horizontal line and measured everything else off of that.

Next we tore the paint tape lengthwise so one side was a little bumpy. We tore a LOT of tape. We put the bumpy side up and measured off the straight side for all measurements.

We used a piece of cardboard about the size of a brick to measure where each of the across pieces would go. We started every other row with 1/2 of that cardboard to simulate 1/2 a brick. That creates the stagger effect of real bricks. That part worked well.

Next I went over all the lines with a spatula to ensure it sealed well. After all, why would you go to all that trouble only to have the paint leak under the tape.

Then I took a sponge and three colors I liked for the brick. I put each color of paint in a paper plate. I primarily used the red and used the other two colors for accent colors. This part was a lot of fun. (see my comments below for the actual colors used in this project)

After I was done painting, I pulled off the tape. You don't want to wait until everything is completely hard-rock dry. Go ahead and take it off right after you finish sponge painting. This will ensure that the tape doesn't tear off some of the paint that you want to keep on the bricks.

After I caught my breath, I did some work on the individual bricks including adding shadow to each brick. Add a line of dark brown paint to the right and bottom of each brick and smudge it into the grout. This is where the wall came to life.

More faux looks were adding some white paint with a sock and then rubbing off most of it. Adding paint splatter and paint drips with white paint. I mixed some grey paint with brown paint to make "dirt" and rubbed it lightly on spots on the grout to add age. You can get real creative here. I'm thinking about making some rust stains and algae on some of the bricks.

My boys are thrilled so I'm happy.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Carpet is of the devil!!!

Oh, I'm totally convinced of it. Carpet is EVIL nasty stuff. This weekend I got a burr up my saddle and decided to take out that nasty stuff from the hallway and boys room. We have lived in our house for almost twelve (12) years and have the original carpeting (which was cheap junk to begin with). I have a wonderful carpet cleaning guy who comes out and steam cleans my carpet minus the soap. Soap residue is a major soil magnet. My carpet "looks" good on the surface. It has really held up well for being around for so long with two boys, a dog and a cat. At least that was what I thought. Wanna feel creepy crawlies up your spine? Pull up your carpet.

There were piles of a very fine sandy dirt that had filtered down to a place in never, never land between the padding and the concrete that no amount of vacuum suction could have taken out. It was disgusting. Then I rolled up the carpet and found the residue of stains long forgotten lurking there. Plus I found some suspicious looking black stuff that I think might have been the beginning of mold. It makes my stomach turn inside out to think my boys were breathing in this stuff in their room. Ughhhh! Everything is safely at the road, tied up in neat bundles and ready to be hauled off. Good riddance.

It got me thinking... here it comes... Do people look at you and think you have it all together? Everything looks great on the surface but lurking deep down are long forgotten stains and dirt. God wants to remove them from you. Not just do a good scrubbing job. Completely take them out. Check this out:

Knowing this, that our old man was crucified with Him, that the body of sin
might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves of sin. Romans 6:6

Wow! We don't have to be slaves to those sins, stains and dirt in our lives. They are done away, thrown away, put to the road, gone! Thank you Jesus for your sacrifice that takes away our sin. We are made new!

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