Saturday, June 16, 2012

Some Progress in the Bedroom

My home improvement project week two weeks ago also included backtracking to fix a problem I'd discovered with work I'd already done: a painted bedroom ceiling.

This is nothing but pure aggravation, since I'd already started in on a floor painting project in there, and then realized one morning, as the light was pouring in the window, that my paint job had missed spots, and was streaky.

Here's what it looked like:

On the left, unretouched photos of the evidence. On the right, arrows highlighting the paint streaking, with a visual re-enactment of the homeowner's discovery. 
With an east-facing window I knew I was going to see that every single time I woke up in the morning. I knew it would bug me forever. So with a heavy sigh, I added "repaint ceiling" on my list of things to get done. Again.

I blame this product, on the left below:

See how it says on the left hand can "you won't miss a spot?" Yeah. Not so much. In theory the colorant, which dries white as it dries, prevents missed spots while you're painting because you can see a color better than layers of white. While you're painting you look at all those vaguely lavender pinkish stripes and say, "oh, but it's all covered, it'll dry out all right." But it doesn't. With colorant in it that gradually changes as it dries, there's no way to tell what's a thin spot any better than before, and in my opinion it's even harder to see. I will never use this or any similar product again. I will stick with the product on the right, the just plain, traditional ceiling paint.

And while we're on the topic of How Much I Hate Painting Ceilings, lets also talk about its sub-topic, How Much I Hate Ceiling Paint. This really isn't specific to the brand shown here, and for the most part I consider Valspar a good quality paint that I use often. But I fail to understand why ceiling paint has the consistency of nearly WATER, making it drippy, runny, difficult to work with, and a major mess. Regular paint, even the plain ones without pigment, have more thickness or "body" to it than ceiling paint. It clings to the brush, the roller, the wall. Why can't you have that in a ceiling paint? It seems like that thickness and cling would be even MORE desirable when painting an overhead space instead of a vertical wall. It makes no sense to me.

Now that I'm done huffing about ceiling paint's general lousiness, here are a few pictures to get an idea of how this room's come along since we moved in. My bedroom is really two rooms, a larger space with an alcove for the bed. It's the alcove we're trying to get shaped up, so I can move the bed into it and finish the rest of the bedroom space.

This is how we started:

You can see the mysterious black stuff on the floor that we found under three layers of carpet and pad, and the damage done to the walls removing the dark vinyl paneling.

Above is a shot of the room after the subfloor had been sanded, the walls sheathed in a fresh layer of drywall, and joints taped and plastered.

Above is the room with finally non-streaky ceiling and walls (which are a soft gray) and the floors which are spattered with ceiling paint (I used drop cloths, but we still had some mishaps. The subfloor already had a coat of floor paint primer on it in dark brown that I'll have to redo, but it should go fast and I'll be ready to start the floor, which is going to include stenciling. 

Still yet to work on in this photo is the outlets, and I need to have an electrician come in and check the wiring in this room. It's concerning me. I also need to clean up the window and the window trim. 

Now that I've gone back and corrected my mistake, we're ready to go back to our regularly scheduled home improvement, already in progress. Here, that means a floor stenciling project. With any luck, still yet this summer! 


  1. Ugggghhhh, streaky's the bane of my existence. We had it all over the place at Mom's condo too and it felt like we were painting the same thing FOREVER!!!! And yes, I totally agree...why can't they make ceiling paint better AND I hate painting ceilings too!!!!

    Can't wait to see the floor stencil!