Hitting Refresh on Paint

Have you ever sat down with your significant other and thought, “Wouldn’t it be a great idea to repaint the entire downstairs of our home during the one week we have off for the holidays”?  No?  Just us?  Well, Dan and I came to the inevitable conclusion that it was time for us to give the first level of our house a facelift after noticing quite a few scuffs, chips, and ceiling discoloration that followed our kitchen renovation.  Let’s add “fresh paint” to the list of things that no one ever tells you about doing a kitchen renovation.

Exhibit A: Trim damage.


Exhibit B: Cabinet discoloration.

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Exhibit C: Worn window trim.  We can’t exactly blame this on the renovation itself, but having everything else in the kitchen look shiny and new definitely made the window look dated.


While battling colds and a stomach virus, Dan and I dove headfirst into the elaborate painting process that we’ve become familiar with over the past few years.  In fact, this is our third consecutive winter break painting project. Year 1 (bedroom) and Year 2 (bathroom) were both smaller spaces, plus they were not our primary living space, so this project was a bit more daunting.

We started our three-day painting spree by removing everything off of the walls.  Goodbye, gallery wall of frames. So long, every piece of art that we’ve painstakingly collected and hung over the past four years.  See you later, bamboo blinds and fireplace mantel (who knew that was never repainted?).  We moved as much furniture as we could to the center of the room.

We also spent three hours covering everything in clear plastic tarp.  For the record, we used quite a few tarps and a lot of painter’s tape to cover our floor and large pieces of furniture.  I’ve gone over our full painting process before, but since we were just refreshing our paint coats, we modified the process.  We didn’t use any primer and we did just one coat of paint in Benjamin Moore’s White Satin.  It’s a very light blue, which also comes across as an off-white or gray depending on the light.  Here’s some of the refresh up close:

For the trim, we just used a generic white trim paint in a matte finish.  We also painted the interior of our basement and garage doors in the same color, and we used a flat white paint for the ceiling.  Here you can see the distinction between the white trim and the White Satin (blue) wall color.

Here’s a closer look at the color.  It looks so bright when it’s been repainted – it makes me all warm and cheery, despite the fact that winter is actually upon us.

We’ve officially been able to cross repainting off of our kitchen to-do list, thank goodness! Let’s revisit those checkboxes, shall we?

Krista & Dan’s Kitchen To-Do List

  • Choose contractor and sign contract for kitchen renovation (this was too complex for us to take on ourselves for the first time, but we’re ready for the kitchen in future house #2!)
  • Choose custom cabinets and have them installed
  • Choose countertops and have them installed
  • Choose hardware for cabinets and have them installed
  • Choose backsplash tile and have it installed and grouted
  • Reinstall the dishwasher that’s been dismounted from the countertop
  • Restock our kitchen cabinets and pantry (everything is still in the basement, save for a few essentials)
  • Paint exposed kitchen spaces and ceiling
  • Find a use for our blank, left side kitchen wall
  • Decorate floating shelves and glass cabinet shelves
  • Update kitchen blinds on the kitchen windows
  • Make and install a no-sew roman shade on the kitchen windows to add color
  • Replace two kitchen light fixtures – we’re halfway there on this one!
  • Update the left-side kitchen pantry to match our existing cabinetry
  • Create and design a kitchen command center (like this one) under our new glass cabinet and bar top area
  • Build a kitchen table (definitely a Dan project)
  • Find and/or update current kitchen chairs and potential bar stools

Next week, I’ll be sharing the story of how we fell in love with our kitchen light fixture! Just another day in the life of DIY bloggers. :)

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