Last Updated on February 26, 2013 by Kristi Linauer
My utility closet is tiny. This project was supposed to be so easy. I woke up Saturday morning, all excited and chipper and ready to get started. I thought to myself, ‘Since this closet is so small, this will be a quick job! I’ll get the argyle done, install the cabinets, and probably even have time to prime the cabinets!’
I should really know better by now. Whenever I think something is going to be simple and take just a little bit of my weekend, that project seems to overflow into my week, then the following weekend, and the week after that.
After an entire weekend of working on my little closet, here’s what I got finished…
Yep, that’s about a 24” x 32” section, and even it’s not finished. I still have to add the white stripes.
Whenever this happens, I always think to myself, ‘How in the world do I get myself into these things?!’ In this case, there’s no need to wonder. I know exactly how I got myself into this.
I failed to plan. I tried to make it up as I went along.
When Saturday arrived, I had already painted the base coat of Behr Grass Cloth, so I was ready to go with the argyle.
I started at a point that would be covered by the base cabinets, and drew a perfectly level line…
Then I used the nifty little 45-degree bubble to mark lines at a perfect 45-degree angle.
Then I whipped out my painters tape and got down to business…
And I was so excited when the first color went on. That excitement faded quickly…
‘It’s way too soon to judge it,’ I said to myself. ‘Just keep on going, and it’ll get better,’ I convinced myself.
It didn’t get better.
There were sooooo many things I didn’t like about this first attempt. The pattern was way too small. I used perfect little squares, which I thought would be fine (after all, the argyle in my blog banner has perfect little squares, and I like the way it looks), but diamonds would have been much better. And then the pattern of colors just wasn’t working for me.
But the most frustrating thing of all…the wall texture!! I’ve mentioned my frustration over my wall texture before. I’ve honestly never seen walls before that have this much texture on them, so regardless of how much and how hard I burnished the painters tape before I painted, the paint would seep right under the tape. So frustrating!
So on Saturday evening, this was my “progress”—no progress at all, and a Saturday wasted.
Sunday afternoon I decided to start over again, and I decided to do it right. I started by skim coating the walls to get rid of some of the texture. (Keep in mind that most of the walls will be hidden by cabinets, so I only did the portions that would show.)
You can see here the difference it made, with a skim coated part right next to a portion of wall with the original texture on it.
After waiting hours for the drywall mud to dry, and then priming the walls again, it was on to a new color for the base coat—this time something with a little more oomph to it. This chocolate brown color is so scrumptious I’d love to use it in an entire room!
This second time around, I made myself a little diamond template using a piece of junk mail that was printed on glossy cardstock.
Once again, I started with a perfectly level horizontal line…
And then used my diamond template to draw the pattern on the wall.
After a little taping…
…and a little painting…
…I knew that this one would turn out a thousand times better than my original attempt.
No, I didn’t get very far, but at least I like how it’s looking this time.
I’ll need to do a second coat of paint on the diamonds, which of course will drag this project on waaaaaay longer than I had anticipated.
And then, of course, I have to add the white lines. That’s the part that will “make” this design. Without the lines, the design kind of falls flat.
So just an FYI, there’s nothing “quick” or “simple” about argyle, especially if you fail to plan the design ahead of time, and just wing it as you go along.
Well, that was my weekend. How was yours?
Addicted 2 Decorating is where I share my DIY and decorating journey as I remodel and decorate the 1948 fixer upper that my husband, Matt, and I bought in 2013. Matt has M.S. and is unable to do physical work, so I do the majority of the work on the house by myself. You can learn more about me here.
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