Thursday, January 19, 2017

if you give a mom some spray paint...

Once upon  a time (last year) Mike and I were starting to glance at homes on knowing that it was becoming more and more of a possibility that we would be relocating to land of Virginia. It became pretty apparent that if we wanted a home bigger than what we were in (we did!), but also in a good area, it was not going to be easy to find.

In the end God blessed us with a home that is huge and in a great location but that has left us with nary a decorating budget to be seen and LOTS of polished brass light fixtures (and sooo much light oak)- I'm not talking pretty vintage brass, that I can get with, but the brightest, most polished there is, see?

         ^You're next, buddy.

It was built some time in the early 2000s, but holds tight to some serious late 90s flair and I am NOT complaining because I am just so happy to have a home for our family, but I am daily suppressing the desire to make it 100% less 90s-ish.

Some people have a theme for their home decor, think "Farmhouse Chic" or "Vintage European" or something, and in an ideal world I would love to refinish our wood floors to darken them and paint our kitchen cabinets white, but that is neither fitting to this season of my life nor fitting into our budget (again, there is no more budget). Whatever small budget we did have we spent on furnishing this home with various items from Craig's List (it's almost double our last home's size). So now my only goal for a theme in this house is simply: NOT 90s! No more polished brass!

I was at a moms discussion group a couple of months ago with the theme being "home decorating" when I discovered that yes, it is possible to get rid of polished brass monstrosities with some simple spray painting and since then I have been sucked in to the black hole of Rustoleum. I started with our dining room chandelier and was so pleased that I did the light in our future-piano-room fixture the same color. I failed big time in the mom blogger department and did not take befores of either light fixture, I promise to snap some of the next ones I do. Here are some anti-climactic afters.

Imagine them super bright, ugly brass and then not.

4 bottles of paint and 2 primers later I have nearly maxed out my spray paint budget and I have 4 more fixtures on the first floor that I am determined to finish with one bottle of paint and primer and we will see how that goes.

When it comes to domestic graffiti I do not discriminate and have ventured into the land of spray painting various other things as well:

First of all there were 2 mirrors I found at the salvation army for pennies and painted the same color as the light fixtures because ain't nobody got time for various spray paint colors also cheap is my middle name:

No befores, I am the worst. The big one was a craaaaaazy multi-colored thing and the other was gold.

Next are these brown vases that have been in home-decor rotation since our first year of marriage since they hailed from Mike's bachelor days.

I found those adorable little vintage brass vases at a local antique shop and felt like they would go so much better next to some cream, and I think I was right.

Then there were these candle holders I found for $1 a piece at a thrift store and some little candle plates that I have had for years that I painted and glued together to make one elevated chunky candle holder. I definitely prefer the result.

I found a super ugly planter on our porch from the previous owners and a little plant "table" or something out in the yard and I was racking my brain for something to draw attention away from an air intake vent in our non-piano-room so I went a-painting and came up with this.

No before picture but rest assured both pieces were naaaaaasty.

I'm sure you're thrilled that that is all I have for now, but I am also sure I will be back with more.

I feel happier with what is here now than what was there before, but I am also having to just stop looking at home-decor blogs and am working on trying to be content with what I have because we are so blessed.

Plus, I have definitely developed a bit of an addiction, it's kind of a problem- right up there with my glue gun issues. I am learning that my "design style" is just "pretty". I like pretty things. I am not really super-into ultra-modern looks, but more traditional and simply pretty things. I'm learning to work with the stuff I have (or um, paint it) and shop my cupboards for things I can decorate with that I had previously never thought could work-- like these crystal candle holders from Mike's grandmother paired with a beautiful silver serving tray from some close family friends turned dining room table centerpiece:

Whatever, it works. I'm done!
Peace out.


  1. I'm going to have to look into that Rustoleum!

  2. Good grief. How do you do this! I only have 3, 3 and under, and my house is full of gross polished brass and light fake oak. I just can't get to it. Great job! It looks beautiful!

  3. Love to spray paint all the things! About to undertake the doorknobs. Looks great, Ana!

  4. Now I can sleep soundly knowing what you do in your free time! J/k. Job well done! Send some of that motivation my way, please!

  5. Rustoleum is some great stuff. Also, I've realized going for a home decor "theme" stresses me out because- no budget for replacing every hodgepodge second-hand piece we have! I've been trying to be more content and making use with what we have.
    I love those chunky candle holders!

    1. Yes! I feel like the pressure to fit into a certain "style theme" is too much, things can fit just because they are beautiful and they brighten a room, theme or no theme!

  6. That single light you have on your ceiling (not the chandeliers)? We call them boob lights. You'll never look at it the same way again ;)

  7. Looks great! I am finally learning the art of grouping things together to give them more punch. Can't wait to see more afters!

  8. When we moved into our house two years ago… I painted every closet mantle piece and paneling white… I was on a mission…Your next venture into cheap home decor should involve modge podge, twine and IKEA light fixture bulbs that make sweet light fixtures ..

  9. Amen to the no home decor budget. I have run the Nester's "shop your house" philosophy pretty much into the ground. Also I have zero tchotchkes (sp?) So bare surfaces all around...maybe my style theme can be minimalist ;)

  10. The after pictures (based on how I imagine the befores were) are great. Does the spray paint stay on to the various metal materials? Or does it rub/scratch off?