Tag Archive | Benjamin Moore

Indi go go

Sometimes the best results come when you break the rules. It is easy to get wrapped up in what you SHOULDN’T do. For example, using dark colors on the walls will make a space seem cramped and small or closed in.

I want to take a different approach. How about using dark colors on the wall to add drama or make my art pop? What if I use dark colors to highlight what I like best about my house: my art? What about using dark colors to make it feel cozy?


Indigo Inspiration.

Art galleries do this. You will go into a gallery and the walls will be a deep royal blue and then migrate to a purple-y burgundy and move on into a hunter green. Against those rich colors, the rich colors in the art shimmer and shine, as you move from gallery to gallery.

I am going dark. In the kitchen. Breaking all the rules. It is a small space, with only two sources of natural light. But I have a feeling that this is the right thing here.

Art wall in the kitchen.

Art wall in the kitchen.

Next week I may be eating crow and taking it all back but a bright white ceiling, a new ceiling fan and indigo walls sound dramatic to me. The Benjamin Moore color name is Indi go go. It is speaking to me and I am  up for giving it a try. Navy blue, here we come.

Benjamin Moore Indi go go.

Benjamin Moore Indi go go.

 After all, it is only paint and broken rules.

© copyright 2013 Mariam d’Eustachio at Simply Turquoise. All rights reserved.

The Buddy System

Friends don’t let friends paint floors alone… EVER! My friend was up for a dose of “Crazy Design 101” and was on her way over to help. It only took  a near miracle to carve out several hours of free time during the day to paint. This miracle involved engaging two Grandmas, one science team expedition, one friend, and one neighbor in exchange for a few hours in a row to work on the house.

The porch with fresh paint.

The porch with fresh paint.

My son went with a team of scientists to count salamanders. The official title of this expedition was Log-Flippin’. One Grandma was with Prima and the other Grandma was with the baby. All children were accounted for and my buddy was on the way.

The porch.

The porch.

Instead of blogging, or doing laundry, or anything else around here, I have been busy with this room. It is painted. The trim still needs a final coat of paint, but it is mostly painted. Every crack in the walls and ceiling has been repaired. The base coat color on the floor is done. It was time to begin marking the lines for the pattern that was to go on the floor.

No this is not an eye exam.

No, this is not an eye exam.

Friend and I got charged up with coffee… (ok, that was just me who did that) and got to work. We sharpened our pencils and gathered every T-Square and measuring device for at least one square mile around here, plucked up our courage, and marked the lines. She kept stopping every now and then to say something helpful like, “Uh oh” and “Oh no” and “Do you think this is straight enough?” and I mostly nodded and said with more confidence than I actually felt, “It’s great! Let’s just keep on going and see how it turns out.”

This job was not meant for one person. In order to get the pattern straight, we had to line up the grid using an 8 foot-long board that appeared to be straight. We used knee pads and took regular breaks for a Yoga-stretch, and I am still sore!

Frog Tape was a problem.

Frog Tape was a problem.

We ran into a few snags along the way. The Frog Tape, best known for not letting the paint bleed under and creating straight lines, was pulling up the base coat. I had to switch over to free-hand painting. The Frog Tape would have worked well on a regular surface like drywall, but not for concrete.

One row is done!

One row is done!

The long-term plan for this space is to put down tile, with a radiant heat underneath, that will serve as the main source of heat in the room. Until then, the painted floor will look great and serve as a conversation piece for many geometry lessons to come.  The first lesson learned from “Crazy Design 101,” is you should always have a design buddy you can call in a pinch, and mine is coming over on Wednesday to help me finish.

© copyright 2013 Mariam d’Eustachio.

Re-think and Recycle

I’ve been thinking about recycling lately. I am trying to fit my stuff into a new house and make it look as if it was always intended for THIS space, even though it wasn’t. On a purely practical front, people cannot go out and buy new stuff every time they move. The idea of repurposing your old and tired things appeals to me; breathing new life into some old junk.

Of late, my fantasies have consisted of beautiful dining room chairs prancing through my head. Once in a store, I occasionally have to wipe the drool from my chin as I ogle the chairs, until I am confronted with a price tag. Shocked, I take the reality check and walk away with nothing every time. Inevitably, this has lead to my recycling philosophy.

Chair Envy.

It all started with these chairs in a hotel lobby.

My wicker dining room chairs have lasted for twelve years and through several children who used to pick at them when they were in time out. The chairs refuse to wear out. I wish they would so I could justify pitching them. Rather than throw out perfectly good chairs, I decided to just give the cloth chairs on the ends a face-lift with new slipcovers. This changed the look of the whole room!

Slipcovered chair in my new dining room.

Dining room with a view of the not-yet-even-unpacked adjacent sunroom.

Fresh new paint in Benjamin Moore’s  picnic basket gives my dining room an entirely new look.

The solution turned out to be so easy. With the slipcovers from World Market, my chairs were new again in less than 15 seconds. The cost was $50 instead of at least 10 times that for new chairs. I successfully recycled the old chairs and breathed new life into them.

Recycling your old things not only saves money, but can make your home unique and add personality. I am challenging myself to reuse whenever possible and if I can’t reuse what I have, buy it used from Community Forklift, Craig’s List or The Habitat ReStores. When I rescue trash, I am actually preventing it from filling up the landfill and not giving in to the constant pressures to buy more stuff. Paint your frames if the finish is wrong, paint an old light fixture to spruce it up, recover an old fabric, or just add new hardware to an old piece of furniture. If the piece is solid wood, it will last forever. These ideas are not new, but to me it is refreshing to let the house be decorated over time and not rush into the latest must-have. You will end up with an eclectic look that is interesting as well as beautiful. That is a worthy goal.

 © copyright 2012 Mariam d’Eustachio