The painters are done! Thank you for all your affirmation re: hiring pros to do all this work. I’m really happy we did! And I’m really happy it’s over. They really took over my entire house there a little more thoroughly and for a little longer than I expected.
But it was so worth it. I haven’t done anything yet other than get the furniture back into a rational arrangement and clean up all the dirt and dust, but the difference is striking. Imagine me skipping around, singing songs and throwing rose petals in the air. That’s basically what it feels like.
I must have mentioned once or twice how happy it makes me to have everything so fresh and bright, because Pippo periodically tells me “Our new house is so pretty with our new fresh paint!”
(If you ask him, he’ll tell you that now it’s a “nice, creeeamy white!” If you’re looking for more specifics, it’s Sherwin Williams Crème — SW7556, with Benjamin Moore Chantilly Lace — OC-65 for the trim.)
Before, you will recall that our dining room was blue:
And our living room was yellow:
Now: white! Bright! Happy!
It’s not just some sort of camera lighting trick — the room really does look that much brighter in real life (as you can see in the “before” picture, it was just as bright and sunny outside when I took that shot as it was for the “after” one). Whereas all the brown in the yellow paint absorbed the light, the white reflects it and makes everything seem much more cheery.
Though I opened the blinds to take these photos, we actually have them closed for much of the day to keep the sun from heating up the house too much (the highs here this week range from 92-102). It’s nice to be able to hide from the heat a little bit and not feel like you’re living in too much of a cave.
|Front entry before.|
We decided to go with just one color for this whole open living space, whereas before there were three, because there just isn’t enough definition between the rooms to break it up. Before, there were spots from which you could see all three colors at once, without any obvious architectural cues to separate the spaces.
The tricky thing was choosing a color that worked in so many different spaces — some that get only morning light, some that get only evening light, some that get no natural light at all! And, of course, it had to work with our kitchen counters and cabinets, not to mention all our furniture. There may be a non-neutral color that could have worked, but I certainly do not have the mental strength and energy to find it — certainly not to commit to it. Choosing a white was stressful enough!
|Front entry after.|
The white trim makes a huge difference as well. As I mentioned, the woodwork was nothing special — inexpensive, builder-grade narrow molding and hollow-core doors, stained medium brown. Painting it white suddenly updates the whole house.
And the drab stained baseboards didn’t do anything for our floors (which are not hardwood, alas, but a high-quality laminate and are actually quite nice), whereas the white ones really show them off!
|Looking into the eat-in kitchen. I’ll show you more of the kitchen another time.|
In brief, we love it. The next step is to rearrange the furniture a few more times until we figure out what makes the most sense and then start putting things on the walls. I love putting things on walls!
I also have a bunch of curtains that need to be hung — hopefully I can make them all work for our new windows.
(Open floorplan query: which windows need to have matching/coordinating curtains? Do my dining room, living room, and eat-in kitchen windows all need to match, since you can see them all at once? Say, for instance, I had enough pretty curtain panels to dress only two sets of windows the same. Which two should I go with? And would you still love me if the third didn’t match? Or do I just need to figure out a way for them all to go together?)