DIY Big Boy cars room on a little budget: Part One

coming into June 042

coming into June 043big boy room 008 Picture a shabby chic girly guest room with mismatched florals. Add into the mix worn off-white walls with residue from a torn down Winnie The Pooh border leftover from the previous owners. This certainly would not work for my growing little boy or me for that matter. In preparation for moving our son to a twin sized bed we needed to convert our guest room into a big boy room. What else on earth would a little boy want but cars! So, cars it is. I am not one to go with a premade prepackaged overpriced theme. While we like the movie Cars we aren’t interested in using those cars for the room. Over the next few posts I will attempt to show you step by step how you can transform a room. It doesn’t have to be a car themed room, but my hope is that if you are new to the DIYing that you will feel confident that this can be replicated to reflect your style and theme. Let’s start with painting. I wanted to pick a color that was both neutral yet interesting. Turns out everyone in the paint line had the same idea as me and we all were mixing greys. This grey is Pewter Cup by Behr. It is a paint and primer in one in a Satin finish. We were told this was a good option for a kid’s room because it is durable and washable. Spackle your holes knicks with a small tub of joint compound or spackle from your local hardware store using a putty knife. Allow to completely dry before attempting to sand smooth. I like to look at the room in different lighting because I often find spots I didn’t see at another time. Most people know how to paint so I won’t go into too much further detail here because to me painting is something I just want to hurry up and finish so I can enjoy the results. So, the long and short of it is that the walls are a light grey and the woodwork is white. We don’t use painters tape but prefer a good brush to do the cutting in and edging. One thing I would like to suggest is that you paint your ceiling (and do it first). You may look at your ceiling and think it doesn’t need to be painted. However, once you paint your walls your ceiling may take on a more dingy hue. So, paint it and you’ll thank yourself later even if it is frustrating task! In my next post I am going to focus on the custom painted roads we added to the walls. Expect everything to take longer than you expected as it always does. Case in point, we are still putting a few finishing touches on this room while trying to start our bedroom makeover. We’ve lived in our home 10 years and this was the only room in the house we hadn’t painted. Unfortunately, now that that is painted, we have to start back at the beginning. Oh the joys of home ownership! Actually, I have to admit I am ready for some change.

While they say that paint is one of the cheapest ways to make a difference in your home, it really isn’t that cheap once you buy ceiling paint, wall paint, trim paint, accent paint etc. So, here is my advice:
Paint Purchasing pointers to save money:
* If you are close to an approaching holiday weekend and can wait you can often find that Home Depot and Lowes offer rebates on paint for these holiday weekends, especially in the summer.
*There is nothing wrong with purchasing paint at Home Depot. In fact, a few years ago Consumer Reports Magazine rated Behr paint over some of the big name brand specialty paint stores.
* You can take your paint back and get it retinted if you hate it. For example, your butter yellow turned out more like sunflower. Take it back, explain the problem, and chances are a shot of this or that will give you the color you want.
*Check out the oops paints sections at Home Depot and Lowes. These are paints that were returned or mistinted and never left the store. They used to go for $5 a gallon, but are a little more than that now. I have painted many rooms in our house with oops paints. I even got two gallons of yes, a butter yellow that I wanted for our living room. These paints are usually shelved near the mixing paint area or near the contractor’s exit of the store. Check regularly and you might hit the jackpot.
*If you aren’t sure how much paint you will need. Start with less, you can always go back and buy more. They try and tell you that the color might differ if mixed at a different time, but I think that it could differ even if you did it at the same time. It is done with a computer so there should be technically less room for error.
*If you like a color at one store you can take that sample to another. Almost all stores do color matching so they can scan the swatch, your favorite sweater, or whatever and voila you have custom paint.
*If you take care in cleaning your brushes and supplies you shouldn’t have to purchase new ones each time you paint a room. That being said, sometimes I have been known to just throw a roller out without attempting to clean it. I think the water used to clean it might cost as much as buying a new one.

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