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Making It Presentable — Way More Challenging Than I Thought

I have a confession, but I doubt that this will come as a shock to anyone.

You know how my plan for this year was to finish my living room, entryway, and dining room completely, and then make every other room in my house presentable?  Well, I’m not abandoning that plan.  I do still plan to stick to it as closely as possible.  But let’s just say that I’m finding it way more difficult that I had anticipated.

We all know what happened when I headed into the hallway bathroom to take care of item #61 on my master to-do list — cover the floor with peel and stick tile.  I had the best intentions, but one thing led to another, and now that bathroom looks like this

bathroom demolition - 2

It just made more sense to me to do things correctly if I’m going to put the time and effort into it.  The idea of peel and stick tiles on the floor, and covering up the tiled walls, just didn’t set well with me.

But I’m sure there are still things on my list that can be taken care of quickly, right?  Two days ago, I thought I’d try to take care of one of those seemingly quick and easy projects — #86, paint the bedroom walls.  So I got started, rolled the paint onto about one-and-a-half walls, and stopped.  Here’s what it looked like…

painted walls with awful texture 2

Can you see that awful texture on the wall?  It’s horrible!  When I walk into this room during the day, the first thing I notice isn’t my new headboard or the pendant light I worked so diligently to finish.  Nope, I notice that texture on the walls.  It really is the first thing that grabs my attention from the door.

The walls in the condo have heavy texture on them, but they’re a standard knockdown texture, and it’s at least consistent throughout.  I didn’t like it, but because it was standard and consistent, I was able to live with it.  But this texture is bumpy, random, and inconsistent.

painted walls with awful texture

I used a satin sheen paint.  I supposed I could have used eggshell, or even flat paint, but it won’t matter.  The texture is very noticeable even on the walls with the original flat antique white paint.  I don’t now why I expected a fresh coat of paint in a dark color to hide it better, but I did.  And it failed.

So I stopped, and now I have a bedroom that is about 1/3 navy blue and 2/3 old antique white.  What is the point in wasting time, effort, and paint, if the outcome is going to look terrible?  I tried to convince myself to just get it finished so that I can mark something “easy” off of my list and get on with things, but I can’t seem to make myself do that.  If I’m going to paint the walls, I want them to look great when they’re finished.  That’s not unreasonable, right?  🙂

Now this seemingly quick and easy project has turned into something that’s not quick at all.  I want to skim coat the walls to reduce the texture, prime, and paint again.  Since I’ll have to live with this for probably at least three years while we save up for our big remodel, I want it done right, and I want it to be something I’ll actually be proud of when it’s finished.

Please tell me I’m not alone in this.  At least some of you agree with me, right?  If you’re going to a job, do it right, even if that means it’ll take a bit more time and effort.

So all of that to say that I have a feeling quite a few of these seemingly quick and easy projects won’t be quick and easy after all.  I’m still going to do my best to get through as much of my list as possible this year, but I’m just not the type of person to compromise the quality of my work in exchange for quick, easy, and done.  Living in a house filled with new, poor quality finishes and poorly done, rushed jobs would irritate me far more than just living in a house filled with decades-old, outdated finishes that I know I’ll eventually update.

I’m trying.  I really am.  Don’t give up on me, or my “make it presentable” plan, just yet!  🙂



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140 Comments

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Cheryl @ The Creative Me and My McG
    February 4, 2015 at 9:05 am

    It’s always the easy projects that turn out to be the hardest…I think you need to just stick with one room at a time and push forward. It’s easier said than done sometimes, I know. We are in the midst of a bathroom re-do as well, but my mind keeps wandering to painting the kitchen…I tell myself everyday “Home is not built in a day, slow down and enjoy the journey!”

    • Reply To This Comment ↓
      Kristi Linauer
      February 4, 2015 at 9:09 am

      The “one room at a time” thing always sounds great, but it just doesn’t work when you’re having to wait on things like having a floor leveled before you can install subfloor, or waiting for the squirrel guy to finish up before you can re-drywall the ceiling. If I did things in order, one room at a time, I’d lose weeks on end just waiting for other people to get their jobs done so that I can move forward on my projects.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    jens
    February 4, 2015 at 9:06 am

    I can’t agree more! If you aren’t happy with the walls now they will just continue to eat away at you until you really, really hate them. Better to get it right first time around and then you can relax (I realise that you don’t know what that means) and enjoy your efforts.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Genelle McDaniel
    February 4, 2015 at 9:16 am

    Oh, dear. Now that’s a quandry. Since this bedroom will be completely refigured in about 3 years (that will pass quickly) I believe I would just finish painting it and live with it a short while. That way you could be working on another room that is permanent. If you’re concentrating on another project, the bedroom walls will not bother you so much. Buy the time you get ready to turn this room into master bath and master closet, you’ll be wanting to take down the drywall that you would spend so much time skim coating. I just hate to see you put your energy and money into something you’re going to tear down.

    • Reply To This Comment ↓
      carswell
      February 4, 2015 at 9:57 am

      I have to say that I agree with this – I would do the walls in a flat paint which will drastically reduce the visibility of the texture on the walls and call it done for the short term. It’s just not worth the time and effort to skim coat all four walls, prime and paint only to tear it down later.

      Yes, it’s going to bug you deep down but you know it’s only temporary and in the meantime it will look clean and fresh. Heck, you’re living with uglier things now.

      • Reply To This Comment ↓
        Michele
        February 4, 2015 at 12:03 pm

        Agree completely. Flat paint will be more tolerable. Plus, the room will look better with the furniture and textiles back in it, distracting the eye from the wall texture. It’s only going to improve so much anyway as long as the ceiling tiles are there.

        I say save the energy and many hours of labor for another project with a permanent payoff. But that’s just me…

        • Reply To This Comment ↓
          Carol
          February 4, 2015 at 1:59 pm

          I agree, too. Painting is SO fast and easy. A room can be all done in 3 hours. When you hang things on the wall, they just become a backdrop for everything else.

          • Reply To This Comment ↓
            Tyrel
            February 4, 2015 at 3:30 pm

            Agree. What are that chances that while skim-coating, you come across something else that makes this ‘simple’ project take even longer and cost even more?

            You’ve lived with worse for longer, I’m sure. Get some flat, and live with it for a fast 3 years.

            How much time do you really spend in your bedroom, anyway?

            • Barbara @DIY Home Staging Tips
              February 4, 2015 at 9:54 pm

              Another vote for using flat paint in a light color. Ask the trained salespeople at the paint store (not big box store) for advice on a paint thick enough to disguise flaws. Some paints are designed to do this, and I’m not talking textured crap.

              Or, can you glue or staple some inexpensive fabric to the walls that you would like looking at for three years. Or wallpaper?

            • Deanna
              February 6, 2015 at 1:12 am

              My vote would be to just paint in a flat paint as well

      • Reply To This Comment ↓
        Sue Schlange
        February 4, 2015 at 1:59 pm

        Have to disagree with this one. For Kristi, it IS worth it to go to all that trouble because she has to live with it for a few more years until the big remodel. And with the way things pan out, it might be longer than the anticipated three years before that takes place. So, go for it, Kristi, skim coat those walls, prime and paint and be happy that you went to all that effort. Then you won’t have those walls clouding your head, freeing you up to work on the other items on your list.

      • Reply To This Comment ↓
        Sonnie
        February 5, 2015 at 12:12 pm

        Agree! Use the flat paint, and finish painting the entire room, and then move on. So what if the walls in this temporary room aren’t perfect? Make the room presentable and comfortable for now and move on to work on something that is a more long term renovation. I wouldn’t waste time, money, or energy perfecting something that is temporary, even for 3 or 4 years.

    • Reply To This Comment ↓
      Mary
      February 4, 2015 at 10:09 am

      I agree. Get the eggshell paint and live with it. And put the time and effort into permanent remodeling.

      • Reply To This Comment ↓
        Karen Hackett
        February 5, 2015 at 2:46 pm

        I have to agree, it doesn’t make sense to skim coat walls that you are going to tear down. Can you add some texture (i.e. sand) to eggshell paint to hopefully even out the walls for now?

    • Reply To This Comment ↓
      Lisa E
      February 4, 2015 at 10:46 am

      Have to agree, especially if you are just going to redo it in three years. However, I know as I type this you will anyway because it will drive you crazy. 🙂 Better you than me is all I can say! LOL!

      • Reply To This Comment ↓
        Ginger
        February 4, 2015 at 2:24 pm

        I just don’t understand it having to be perfect when you plan a major redo in 3 years. As others said paint is so easy to do. I would paint it, decorate and be done with it for now if you’re planning a major overhaul in 3 years. I have a house full of imperfections. Each room was done so that it looks presentable and decorated. I get compliments on it all the time even though it is a work in progress. I will re-do rooms as I can get to them. But in the meantime they look pretty and presentable when I have company in or just to enjoy myself. You could throw up paint in a matter of a couple of hours and get back to your bathroom redo and then go on to another project. just my opinion….

    • Reply To This Comment ↓
      Barb
      February 4, 2015 at 8:40 pm

      I agree with Genelle for all the reasons she listed.

    • Reply To This Comment ↓
      Jojo
      February 5, 2015 at 7:44 am

      Completely agree with this statement.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    katy
    February 4, 2015 at 9:17 am

    Part of the reason we DIY is to get that feeling of pride when you walk into a beautiful room or look at a well made project and think “I did that!”. Even if there is a minor flaw on an otherwise beautiful piece, we see the flaw and think “I need to fix that”. So don’t waste your time, money and energy putting lipstick on a pig, or paint on bumpy walls. I always tell myself a project is going to be easy and fast… and it never is! Be realistic with yourself that at least 50% of the easy projects on your list aren’t actually going to be easy. And then finish the list in a way that you are going to be happy with and proud of. Who cares if it takes longer than expected?! It’s not like you’re a lazy person who isn’t getting through her list because you’re sitting on the couch eating bon bons! And know that not only are you are inspiring people like me to get out there do something, you also make me feel better in knowing that I’m not the only one with a 1/2 beautifully finished, 1/2 torn apart mess of a a house 🙂

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Tess
    February 4, 2015 at 9:18 am

    I would be the very same way so I can understand. Best to make yourself happy doing whatever you’re doing. Do you have to skim coat or could you just sand the walls to make it flat?

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Linda K
    February 4, 2015 at 9:19 am

    Kristi,

    I agree, particularly in a room where you go and spend so much time every single day. I painted our living room a golden sand and our bedroom a soft bamboo green. And I HATED the colors every single day until I repainted them. The gold was hideous and the way the light in the room hit the plaster walls that have a swoosh pattern was so bad. And in the bedroom the color was just “off” from the color of the comforter and drove me crazy after all the time I spent looking for the perfect color.

    So I completely understand since we have plaster walls and I totally “get” when it just isn’t quite what you want. I was so mad that I’d taken the time to paint the whole living/dining/hall in gold, and did a great job since if it is worth doing it is worth doing well, only to hate it every single day. But I saved up for new paint and went with a color I loved and now I love my living room.
    Linda

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Ann Marie @ Twice Lovely
    February 4, 2015 at 9:21 am

    I definitely get what you’re saying. After you try to level out the texture, you should really use a flat paint though. It really does minimize texture! 🙂

    • Reply To This Comment ↓
      Chris
      February 4, 2015 at 12:00 pm

      I agree, FLAT washable paint (BM has a good one..maybe Lowes or Home Depot as well.) Builders use flat grey white..why, because it hides all the imperfections. You do not want any shine because the light hits it and game over. Paint is a quick fix for now. go with it. We are cheering you on Kristi and if I lived close to you, I would come and help. for free. You are inspiring.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Darla Conley
    February 4, 2015 at 9:23 am

    Have you ever tried Venetian plaster? Sister used that technique and it looks very rich compared to the knockdown.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Genelle McDaniel
    February 4, 2015 at 9:24 am

    Well, I just typed a long response that did not post. To sum it up, 3 years is too short a time to put all that work in and turn around and tear it up. Finish painting and pretend for a short time that it is evenly textured. Put your energy and money into one of the rooms that will be permanent. By the time you get those projects done, 3 years will have passed and you can add on a new bedroom, then tear down the dry wall in this room to reconfigure it for the master bath and walk-in closet. Making it presentable does not mean skimcoating that will be torn out in so little as 3 years. Just hoping you see the practicality of this. You’ve always been so practical.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Sharon C
    February 4, 2015 at 9:24 am

    If skim coating the walls is relatively easy and inexpensive, then I’d definitly do it. As you say, it’s the texture on the walls that’s screaming at you, even with new paint on them and it seems a waste of the paint cost and your time continuing if you’re not happy with the old texture. I’m sure you’ll be happier doing the skimming and that will make the new paint work look even better.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Katie
    February 4, 2015 at 9:37 am

    My dad used to tell me “if a job is worth doing, it’s worth doing right.” and I still live by that today. Sometimes I try to talk myself into taking the easy (lazy) way out, but in the long run, you just end up doing it over. Better to stop now, do it right, than put in the double expenditure of time and materials.

    • Reply To This Comment ↓
      Caty
      February 4, 2015 at 10:46 pm

      Exactly!
      I helped my dad build a temporary fence last weekend. It’ll probably only stay there a couple of months before he replaces it. But you can bet your bottom dollar it’s plumb and tight and he wont mutter everytime he looks at it; it won’t keep him awake at nights wondering if the dogs can get out; and he won’t cringe at the sight of it.
      Even if something is only temporary (& 3 years is a pretty long temporary) you’ll be looking at it every day and it not being right will upset you and irritate you every. single. day. Getting it right for now will give the focus and drive to keep moving on in all the other directions you’re heading.
      And you’ll know that even though that wall will eventually change you did a damn fine job of it beforehand. Be proud of your work. Be proud in your work.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Cathy
    February 4, 2015 at 9:40 am

    it seems to me that budget is a big issue with you and yet you keep throwing money at your walls and this and that only to tear it down and throw more money at it later because you were in such a rush to get it done. Then there is the timeline issue….what IS the rush? Seems to me you have all the time in the world. Why are you putting so much pressure on yourself?
    I really love reading your blog, I think you are an amazing DIYer, and I know you work hard but not always smart.

    • Reply To This Comment ↓
      Elle
      February 5, 2015 at 12:52 am

      What in the world? Just my humble opinion, but, if you catch yourself telling someone, (a stranger, no less, who writes a blog that needs to be entertaining), that they “are not always smart”…delete your comment. And, next time remember that if you can’t say anything nice…it’s probably better to say nothing at all. 😉

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    khadija
    February 4, 2015 at 9:42 am

    If it’s really going to drive you nuts beyond your capacity, then skim coat the wall. If you think you can stand it for a few years, then just wait it out. Sometimes we really just cannot stand something that might not seem like a big deal to other people. I remember sitting by a wall I’d just painted and nearly sobbing because the color was a bit off, LOL, so I completely get it.
    Don’t make a decision while you’re irritated or too tired though.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Deb
    February 4, 2015 at 9:43 am

    Absolutely get the walls the texture you want, but I don’t think you’ll be happy with the look in the bedroom, unless you go with flat or eggshell paint. With good paint, flat almost gives you the feeling of melting into the wall, rather than bouncing off of it. And the light won’t change the color of the room as much.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Peggy
    February 4, 2015 at 9:46 am

    I completely agree with you. I could not live with those walls the way they are. Besides, skim-coating, when it’s done right, really isn’t that much work. I had to do it after removing wallpaper in my hall bath (admittedly a much smaller room than your bedroom, ha!), and I was surprised at how quickly it went. And you’re not planning to knock out every wall in your bedroom, are you? At least some of the work you do on it now will carry over to the new room.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Rachel
    February 4, 2015 at 9:52 am

    ” ‘Good enough’ sometimes is.”

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Karen
    February 4, 2015 at 9:52 am

    I can understand that you cannot abide the texture; esp. with the dark glossy paint, it is just too obviously annoying.
    But how about putting wallpaper on top of the walls for the time being? you know that’s not the last solution for that room, but it might be easier than skim coating the surface. and in a short while – when you remodel big way – you can then move onto the solution you really want for that room!

    • Reply To This Comment ↓
      Skevit
      February 4, 2015 at 2:40 pm

      wallpaper needs to go on smooth walls. So she is either going to have to re texture it then put up wallpaper or sand it flat (she is scared of LBP so thats not an option). If she is going to texture it to level then no need for wallpaper.

      • Reply To This Comment ↓
        Rebecca
        February 4, 2015 at 8:51 pm

        Actually wallpaper can go bumpy textured walls. You just need to choose a thick, heavier weight board.
        When I moved into my house I had this foamy type insulating board as my walls. There was nothing paint could do to make it ok so I bought a heavy weight wallpaper for.under $15 a roll and ended up doing 2 bedrooms for around $100.
        Its been up over a year and i still love it.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Linda H
    February 4, 2015 at 9:53 am

    Skimcoating an entire room seems like a LOT of work — not that you would base your decision on that. You have to live with whatever you decide and if it is too unpleasant to tolerate for awhile, then go for it. All the walls in my house are either textured or paneled, both of which I hate and to add insult to injury, the ceiling is that horrid popcorn stuff. I wanted to create a whiteboard wall in my teenager’s bedroom several years ago. Three skimcoats later I gave up on trying to get it perfectly smooth and painted on the whiteboard paint. It looks okay, but just barely okay. She and her friends put it to a lot of use and loved it, but I saw every flaw. But even seeing the flaws, I wouldn’t have opted for more skimcoating. That was the most frustrating, awful job ever (IMHOP)! Good luck on whatever you decide to do.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Linda Adney
    February 4, 2015 at 9:57 am

    YOU ARE RIGHT!!!!!! I have fired more painters because of texture imperfections…You can have the best design and color and if they paint is awful…the whole project is ruined…FIX the texture problem or every time you walk into that room you will go UGH!!!! and it is the last room you see at night so if you don’t want your mind whirling all nite about how horrible the texture is and what you could or shoud do…go for it…I am so behind you on this one…My house has Monterrey Drag? heavy but pretty…but try to stencil a wall or even repair a nick…My next house will have very little texture so I can paper or stencil if I want…

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    JenW
    February 4, 2015 at 9:57 am

    Well, I’m not surprised. Doing thing just ok for now just isn’t how you roll Kristy! And honestly this is your and Matt’s home. “Making it presentable” just for guests is loco. If there is something that really bugs you about the “now” then by all means, update it as much as you can even if it’s not the “forever” remodel. But the people who come to your home love you and understand that the lack of baseboards along the front entry area just aren’t a big deal that that your focusing your attentions at other places in your home. They understand that you’re more focused on doing quality work slowly than just okay work quickly. And if they don’t understand that then they’re probably not someone who you really need to be concerned about their opinion!

    Long post short…do what works best for YOUR family, YOUR budget, and YOUR preferred methods. And if that means the sunroom is a wreck for the next couple years and it doesn’t bother YOU or MATT then let it go.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Jan
    February 4, 2015 at 9:59 am

    Hi K! You and I are on different ends of the DIY spectrum. I need the project to be complete before I can go on to the next. Having a home full of half finished projects would be so depressing to me. Plus I couldn’t live in a construction zone, or expect my hubbs and kids to. If it was me, I’d finish painting the room, since its not a permanent space, and scratch it off my list… maybe even keep it dim and romantic in there so I didn’t have to see the texture..(just joking). We all work differently though, there is no wrong or right… its what works for each of us. We love watching the process as you go along…

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Lee Ann Perez
    February 4, 2015 at 10:00 am

    Do it right or you won’t spend a single restful night in that bedroom. I know it and you know it. This isn’t an episode of “Trading Spaces” where you have 48 hours to finish and quality be damned, you’re going to finish! This is your HOME, and for you to enjoy living in it, you’ll need it done the right way.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Diane
    February 4, 2015 at 10:05 am

    Ralph Lauren suede paint. One of my friends used it and it is fabulous. It has a melt into nothing finish that seems more intense then flat paint.

    I am an artist, it is hard to accept “good enough”. Knowing it is such a short time makes it easier. But ditch the shiny paint in the meantime. You are on the right track.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Donna Marchlewski
    February 4, 2015 at 10:06 am

    Taking 3 or 4 days to prepare the walls correctly is no time at all in the great scheme of things. Let’s see… a few days of work for 3+ years of enjoyment and satisfaction for a job well done…or… a few hours work to finish painting and live with great dissatisfaction for 3+ years. ALWAYS create your rooms with excellence, even for the short term. This is who you are.

    • Reply To This Comment ↓
      LynW
      February 4, 2015 at 11:20 am

      I agree – a skim coat prep is neither time-consuming nor costly (and certainly not a “waste of time-money because you’re going to just tear it out in three years” as some of the commenters are saying). Doing it now will give you a space that you will be comfortable in during those three (or more) years, where not doing it will make those years feel like f-o-r-e-v-e-r!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Sheila F.
    February 4, 2015 at 10:07 am

    Kristi, I say skim and paint and make your bedroom your haven. I understand that some may say you are wasting money. However, I am not one of them. I truly believe that having a spot to lay your head that is clean, uncluttered and inviting is so important for ones health and well being. It is not a big cash outlay to do this room in a lovely and well done way. I know that you hope to redo the room in 3 years but we all know that LIFE sometimes gets in the way and minds are changed, LOL. Do this room right for you and Matt. And every job is worth doing right. You may do this room and live with it for 10 years before you decide to remodel. Do not give in to doing half [email protected]@ed work just because you may change it in the future. It is NEVER a waste of money to make ones home their haven. Even for “Just 3 years”. Lots of Hugs!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Sheila F.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Skt4me
    February 4, 2015 at 10:09 am

    I hate to wait too! I would wuggeat that you TRY to have just two projects going at a time and switch back and forth, like the pony wall project. Maybe also have a small accessory type project that you can work on in your off hours, like the lamp project. No more than that. If you don’t want to live in chaos you will have to restrain your tendency to be all over the house with different long term projects. good luck!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Mary Anne Looby
    February 4, 2015 at 10:10 am

    Hi Kristi, I hope I didn’t open a can of worms when asking about the texture on your walls. I do agree with you, unless you are purposely giving a wall that stucco/venetian plaster look, then they should be smooth. I know you don’t mind that skim coat stuff, but doesn’t that also require sanding? I did something in our very first house, which cost $18,000. The house was less than a thousand square feet on three floors. At it widest point it was only thirteen feet across. Anyway, we had a small bath on the second floor with the three bedrooms. You could sit on the toilet, put your face in the sink and soak your left foot in the tub, all at the same time. We had a friend who knew how to tile so he tiled the walls in the tub. We bought the only tile we cold afford which was a blush color. The fixtures were white so it did not look too bad. The walls in the rest of the bathroom were shiny blue linoleum with a metal cap two thirds of the way up. I do not remember what was above that. While my husband was away I decided to rip out the walls, to see “what lies beneath”. Well all I found were old furring strips with newspaper stuffed in between. I cleaned out the crap and then called four different contractors to get an estimate for sheet rock. Everyone said the same thing. Not enough room behind the toilet tank to get sheet rock in place. The only option was move the toilet. Right, that was not happening. So, it stayed that way for awhile and everytime I went into the bathroom I would sit there and think what can I do? I finally came up with an idea that I thought might work. I went to the local lumber yard, no HD in those days, and asked for a sample of their thinnest paneling. They gave me a piece, I went home and low and behold, it slid right behind the toilet. So, back I went, after measuring, and got the number of eight by four sheets of paneling that I needed (I had a huge ford station wagon so with the seats down, I could tote full sheets), I brought them in and nailed them in place with the BACK SIDE OUT. It was just a smooth piece, no grooves like the front printed side of the paneling. Once that was done I applied sizing and then wallpapered the whole thing with a pretty stripped floral sanitas paper. Sanitas was a coated cloth backed paper designed to use in kitchens and baths. Very popular in those days. I bought the vinyl baseboard that they also used in those days for the bottom of the wall, cut with a utility knife ad glue on. We finished the top with some nice molding and boom, lovely little bath, by thinking outside the box. Maybe you could try this? Find the cheapest, lightest, thinnest stuff around, slam it up, tape and seam it and now you have a smooth wall, without having to wrestle with heavy sheetrock or loose precious inches off your walls. Blessings.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Josephine
    February 4, 2015 at 10:11 am

    I agree with you; the texture would drive me batty (not that I have far to go). My old apartment in NYC had textured walls, which was bad enough, but someone while texturing the walls, also made a few swear words in the texture! Head shaking. I think a quick smoothing coat of drywall mud would do the trick. I even took drywall mud and mixed in some paint and did a faux venetian plaster on my daughter’s room, then waxed it.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Sandy Poole
    February 4, 2015 at 10:13 am

    I love textured walls, you could do a stomp and drag texture right over your walls, I have done this many times and it really looks good! And it is a very fast job to do…I wish you much luck on what ever you decide to do!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Ann
    February 4, 2015 at 10:13 am

    I hate when things go wrong and I have a lot of practice. For three years, I would put up wallpaper. Do something fun. You know it’s not forever so you could step out of your comfort zone a little.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Lisa Johnson
    February 4, 2015 at 10:22 am

    When you are painting a textured wall do not use anything but a flat paint. All the lumps and bumps will show with any level of sheen. However, if you just painted it with flat paint and then added some artwork, it will disappear. If you are doing something else in a few years regardless, just make do. It will look great. Anyone peering in will be stunned by the beauty of those cute pendant lights you just made anyway. The eyes are always drawn to the pretty objects! Press on- get it done!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Janet L
    February 4, 2015 at 10:22 am

    Please yourself……..you don’t like looking at those walls! Do your magic,even if it takes longer!! I just love to see where your passion leads you each day!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Justin
    February 4, 2015 at 10:29 am

    I think it kind of comes down to what you personally consider acceptable to live with. For example, I think I could personally live with a well-done paint job in that room even with the texture (which I agree is not ideal). I might tone it down a bit by switching to eggshell paint or a lighter color. You seem to have a higher visual standard than I do (which would be why you’re a designer, of course) and it will bother you to see the texture every day, period.

    I’ll give you a different example (where the shoe is on the other foot). I personally hate shoe molding when used between existing baseboard trim and new flooring. Why? Because my Grandfather was a finish carpenter who prided himself in doing things “right”. And the “right” way to do that from a carpenter’s perspective would have been to remove the baseboard, install the flooring close to the drywall, then reinstall the baseboard (or new one) to cover the gap. Installing quarter round is a cheat method so you don’t have to deal with removing and replacing the baseboard. Is it wrong? No. Is it something I personally can live with? No, because I know that it can then never be done right (because the gap is too wide) and I can’t live with seeing it every day forever. Not everyone feels that way. Many people think quarter round shoe molding gives it a perfectly finished look.

    Incidentally, I feel the same way about using quarter-round and cove to fill gaps between cabinetry and walls. A pedantic finish carpenter would have installed a filler strip (if needed) and then scribed the filler strip to the curve of the wall to eliminate the gap. Most DIY’ers just cover it up with moulding. Again, is it wrong? Not if you can live with it. 🙂

    I do think you might want to consider how permanent a fix is before you consider whether you can live with it “for now.” Paint is pretty cheap and temporary. Let’s say you finish those blue walls up and move on to the next “really bad” thing. Your room is still going to look 100% better to others (who won’t have the same discering eye you do). Once you’re done your first pass through the house making it presentable, maybe you can now afford to go back and skim-coat those walls so you can stretch living with it for a little longer. I know I’d rather live with freshly painted textured walls than an open ceiling in another room that stays open because the walls were bothering me.

    • Reply To This Comment ↓
      Kristi Linauer
      February 4, 2015 at 11:18 am

      I never knew that’s what shoe moulding was for! I always thought it was just to give it more of a finished look. I love the look of shoe moulding because it gives the baseboards a “beefier” look. They always look a bit too skimpy for my taste without it. But then again, I never knew the purpose was to cover up gaps from flooring jobs done the easy way! 😀

      • Reply To This Comment ↓
        Phyllis
        February 4, 2015 at 4:45 pm

        I too HATE shoe molding! I just had new floors put in my house and took the old baseboards off and threw them away. I bought new, pretty 5″ baseboards and am shoving them tight to the floor so I don’t need shoe molding. It is also easier to clean when you don’t have shoe molding.

      • Reply To This Comment ↓
        Justin
        February 5, 2015 at 11:09 am

        That’s funny. I guess it never occurred to me that someone might like it as a design choice. Just goes to show how personal preference is. 🙂

        Know what else I dislike that a lot of people like? Using Colonial door casing as baseboard. I suspect most people do it because it’s a lot cheaper than Colonial or Victorian baseboard molding.

    • Reply To This Comment ↓
      Julie @ follow your heart woodworking
      February 4, 2015 at 12:19 pm

      I thought I was the only one who felt this way about shoe molding and quarter round, thanks Justin!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Marilyn Canaday
    February 4, 2015 at 10:30 am

    I think you should do whatever will make you happy with your walls. I love your Blog. It is never boring and I look forward each day to see what you have done. Also, your bathroom floor is going to look a lot better!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Justin
    February 4, 2015 at 10:32 am

    Someone else’s comment reminded me of something we Programmers call “The Engineer’s Creed.” It goes like this: You can have it good, fast, or cheap. Pick any TWO. You cannot have all three.

    Think about it. It’s completely true. 🙂

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Laurie
    February 4, 2015 at 10:35 am

    I understand completely that feeling of walking into a room and seeing the textured walls instead of the other great features. Our last house had them and we quickly decided to have them skim-coated. It looked way better. We intended to do a major reno a few years later but that was delayed and delayed. So…my two cents say skim coat the walls now. And I love reading your blog – it’s the only one I read daily. And (one last ‘and’) someone a few days ago suggested adding a library wall to your music room to provide sound insulation – I think books add a lot of interest and warmth to a room and a library wall seems to belong in a ‘music room’ (just a couple more cents – whatever you do will be right for you). Have a nice day!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Jann
    February 4, 2015 at 10:39 am

    Hey doll….I do this for a living….and even I have a problem sticking to one room in my OWN house and not glancing off to do something else……I am so concentrated with a clients home….when it comes to mine…takes a while…..not sure why….I have anguished over it many times…trying to figure it out…..then sit down…back up my thoughts and say….all shall be be fine with time!
    Take it EASY on yourself…..get that sub floor down…sheet rock up in that bath….chill…have something wonderful for dinner…take a walk…..gander at the curb appeal of other houses…….hit the front door of your home…..and start again. I am so pleased and proud to have found your blog….it’s inspiring….and I am sure we’ll all hang with you and enjoy your efforts and eye for design…..
    You have a lot on your plate…..slip those helpings off a bit at a time…..sit back….breathe deeply and say…….I can do this…..!!!!, look at all you have marveled us with before!
    Big hugs dear one…….and breathe….just breathe…….

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Old House
    February 4, 2015 at 10:39 am

    I COMPLETELY understand!! I bought an old house that someone had apparently DIY’ed with absolutely no clue as to what they were doing. The texture they put on the walls and ceiling is actually disturbing. It is rough, it is uneven, it is splotchy and it hurts if you accidentally rub against it. It is the first thing that catches my eye in the rooms that I haven’t fixed. The true pleasure is walking into the rooms I have made “presentable”. It’s a process. Enjoy the journey!! Lists and timelines are made to be expanded, contracted, and changed. Don’t let the list or original objective drive you. It’s a tool just like a hammer….sometimes we let the butt of a screwdriver be our hammer. Always write your list in pencil. 🙂

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Stephanie
    February 4, 2015 at 10:42 am

    Dang it! Every one of your posts adds something to my to-do list! I think our homes must share previous owners. So many of your issues are the same in my house. Only you have more/better solutions. When I think I have it figured out, you come along and with a “real” fix. Example: I didn’t know wonky floors could be leveled (Add “google local home leveling companies” to list). I didn’t think about minimizing horrendously textured walls, as opposed to sanding and/or ripping them out and starting all over (Start researching “How to skim coat”). Sigh…But seriously, keep rocking the DIY!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    sarah
    February 4, 2015 at 10:44 am

    What about spraying on texture? Or sanding? Skim coating sounds like a nightmare, especially since you hate drywall (me too!). That will be a lot of mud too, some of those textured spots are sticking out a good bit.

    • Reply To This Comment ↓
      Kristi Linauer
      February 4, 2015 at 11:21 am

      Sanding the existing texture really isn’t an option because those walls have about ten layers of paint on them, spanning over six decades. So more than likely, at least one layer of paint is lead-based. Sanding would send that lead airborne. 🙁 Spraying on new texture (like a knockdown texture) is definitely an option, though.

      • Reply To This Comment ↓
        Debbie
        February 4, 2015 at 9:10 pm

        I doubt that you could sand the texture off. My parents house was like that & the walls were plastered. Hanging pictures they had to use a drill & put a screw in the wall because nails would bend. Sandpaper can’t budge it. Their bathroom had no tile just the wall that was coated with something that water just ran off. They could paint the wall inside the tub just like the rest of the room. They never had any mold or signs of water damage. The rest of the walls in the house aren’t like this are they?

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    TinaG
    February 4, 2015 at 10:44 am

    I am on the side of trying a much flatter paint first. Paint is cheap, so it’s worth a try before tackling another big project. By the time you hang artwork and other decorative accessories, the walls won’t be so “in your face” any way. 3 years will pass by quickly and all of it’s gonna go any way!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Rhonda
    February 4, 2015 at 10:44 am

    What is the name of the color? I love the idea of navy walls. I agree wth you on texture.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Alice
    February 4, 2015 at 10:50 am

    Glad to hear you decided against peel and stick tiles! I made the mistake of putting them on my kitchen floor and within 6 months they started peeling up at the edges and whole entire tiles, despite my attempt to re-stick them by placing aluminum foil on them then applying a hot iron, started coming up so that now whole patches are missing and I gaze at the subfloor. I’m currently agonizing since I WANT Bellawood but I have some naughty tomcats and everyone warns that even Bellawood won’t survive repeated sprayings.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    janpartist
    February 4, 2015 at 10:56 am

    Precisely why I haven’t even attempted the back end of my house. I could simply just get started painting etc but I wouldn’t be happy. I want the pull down ladder in the hallway out of the ceiling which means building the new entrance/stairway in the garage and then drywalling the ceiling in the hallway, crown molding and ripping up the carpet, which means refinishing the hardwood floor. AND, that’s just the hallway!!! SO, nothing gets started because I CAN’T just paint the hallway and be happy!! I totally get it!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Linda
    February 4, 2015 at 11:12 am

    Kristi,
    I totally get it. (And I’m certain many other folks do too.) We are currently in year 21 of our 5 year plan. I know these things can take on a life of their own! Back to your walls – just a couple ideas if your thoughts are for a short term fix – something aestetically pleasing, not too expensive in time or money that you can look at for the next 3 years or so. 1. Cover the walls with the heavy underlayment designed to go under wallpaper and then paint it. I love that stuff – it covers a multitude of ugliness! Or, a trick I learned in the domestics trade: find a sheet in a solid or pattern you like and treat it like wallpaper – except that you would adhere it to the wall with liquid starch – you know the bottles of blue liquid starch? That way, when you’re ready to do the big remodel, you can pull the sheets off the wall, wipe down with a warm sponge and the walls are ready for whatever you want to do with them.
    Thanks for the inspiration that you are to the rest of us!
    Linda

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Ruthie
    February 4, 2015 at 11:14 am

    Speaking as a person who has struggled with perfectionism all her life I say just paint the walls and let them go. You wanted presentable. The paint is making it presentable. Really. You say you are going to completely re-do this room at some point. Save your energy and money for then. Really. You are allowing this to become a distraction. Don’t let perfection be the enemy of good enough. Of presentable. Just sing to yourself “let it go, let it go, let it go” and get back to painting. In the long run, and possibly even in the short run, you, your body, and your wallet will be glad you did.

    And yes, what Jann at 10:39 said.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Sue
    February 4, 2015 at 11:18 am

    I would never give up on you and your plan. When you get bogged down or one plan doesn’t work, you come up with an alternate and its usually way better!

    As for textured walls, evidently it was a standard finish in homes from the 60’s and 70’s. We discovered that when we remodeled our living room and family room. Because we didn’t have the time or money to redrywall, I switched from semi-gloss paint to eggshell. That tones down the bumpy surface and makes it easier to live with. In fact, I don’t pay much attention to it at all.

    Take care and don’t let this get you down. Take it one day at a time and some brilliant solution will come to you.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Guerrina
    February 4, 2015 at 11:27 am

    Kristi, I never thought that “making things presentable” meant doing less than stellar job…only that it would be clean and presentable for as little cost as possible. Those walls need to be skim coated or wallpapered (an inexpensive and paintable one) or Linda’s awesome sheet idea for sure to be able to tolerate them for a few years…unless you wanted to (ahem) put up new sheetrock now (sigh) and that depends on how much would be wasted down the road with the total remodel.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Diane
    February 4, 2015 at 11:33 am

    Kristi… this is one time I would disagree. I have a feeling that if you were to choose a matte finish paint you would be okay with the project. The texture would not be as glaring. You might not love it… but just that one change would make it livable.

    I painted a plastered accent wall in my old house a gorgeous deep red eggshell and it was glaring in its imperfections to me. After doing that I read about painting dark colors in a matte finish. It’s evidently flatter than flat… which I’m assuming you know because you are a decorator. 🙂 And a bedroom is one place you can easily use a matte finish.

    If I were in your shoes, I would have a huge need to have my bedroom wrapped up quickly. Three years will go by in a flash and my need for a sanctuary …. free from dust and debris would cause me to work quickly to create that place of clean and calm for the end of the day.

    I’ll look forward to seeing what direction you ultimately take.
    Whatever you do… you’re a rock star in my book.
    Blessings!

    • Reply To This Comment ↓
      Rebecca
      February 4, 2015 at 12:45 pm

      Hmmm….. Diane makes a good argument for repainting it flat dark blue and then calling it quits for now on the bedroom walls.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Becky
    February 4, 2015 at 11:44 am

    Hi Kristi,

    I encountered a somewhat similar problem with walls in my current house. When we moved in, most rooms were covered in wallpaper or painted mauve, along with mauve trim. Upon removing the wallpaper, I discovered to my horror that there must have been previous wallpaper (which was removed, a good thing) however, the glue residue from that first coat of wallpaper wasn’t removed & instead, the walls were primed, and wallpaper applied on top of that mess. After removing the wallpaper, I tried sanding off the glue to no avail & when I applied a skim coat, it wouldn’t adhere properly because of the stuck-on-glue underneath that primer. I went through countless repeats of sanding & re-skimming until I got to a point that I deemed acceptable. And each time, I had to deal with the mess of the dust from the drywall compound. It was not easy. When it was time to update our bath (which was covered in wallpaper), I opted to have all the drywall removed, as I didn’t have the gumption to go through another time consuming mess. Same with the kitchen. It saved me countless hours of work & dust.

    I can certainly understand what you are going through right now with your bath on hold, try not to tackle another huge project. Keep it simple & live with it when you know, for certain that bedroom remodel is only a couple of years away. A a couple of other commenters wrote, forget about the skim coat, get some good flat paint & move on.

    Oh, and one more thing, if you do opt for the skim coat, be sure to use a good oil base primer, especially if you plan on any wallpaper in the future.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Lynne
    February 4, 2015 at 11:48 am

    Obviosly this post has generated lots of comments! I typed my own and it didn’t show up so here I go again. I agree with those who suggested a matt paint to minimize eye texture on the walls and the suggestion to do an anagylpta wall paper is good too since you will be remodeling in 3 years. But what I really want to suggest is that you abandon your 2015 plan because it is unrealistic – way too much to accomplish. Why not take it slower and focus on some big things? For example sheet rocking the ceiling in every room? This must be done anyway. You know when you clean a room you always start at the top and work your way down? Same principle here. Then when you start a room the shell will be pretty and your entire house will look more presentable with the ceilings done. Not a fun project I know, but I think it makes sense. Maybe do the baseboards too?

    • Reply To This Comment ↓
      Rebecca
      February 4, 2015 at 12:40 pm

      But Kristi is a blogger, she has to keep her fans entertained! I think dry walling ceilings every day would get old fast.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    MarillaAnne
    February 4, 2015 at 11:54 am

    Chickadee, for the sake of your arms and shoulders, and the avoidance of complete insanity, I strongly encourage you to take a page from art school: Highlights increase the height of the peak and thereby increase the depth of any valley.

    Acknowledge what you already know is true — what you have already pointed out.

    Get a flat paint and call it taking a much needed break from the task master, perfectionism.

    If it makes you feel better, i did get in trouble for picking a texture like this off of a freshly refinished wall in the music room art school. It was rough against my arm. ;~)

    And … Is there a soft texturing ingredient that can be added to FLAT paint and rolled on? If so, it would at least add more variation and perhaps soften those prickly bumps.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    sue2
    February 4, 2015 at 12:09 pm

    The opinions so far seem to be about 50/50. Speaking from my own experience and opinion, I would just opt for painting the remainder of the room….get things back in place and on the “worst” wall, do a gallery wall with artwork and/or photos. You mentioned yesterday that you plan to put dimmer switches in your new lights and I think that also will “tone down” the texture. Practically speaking, you don’t hang out in your bedroom anyway because you are sooooo busy with your projects and Matt. In this case, put that lipstick on this pig and know within three years you’ll have what you want and save your perfectionism and money for that time when it will be permanent. Move on to the other rooms where you can make a real difference that will stand the test of time.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Julie @ follow your heart woodworking
    February 4, 2015 at 12:16 pm

    I don’t think you should put lipstick on the pig!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Lesley Ann Sturge
    February 4, 2015 at 12:18 pm

    hi, kristi, I agree that the navy walls right now are not ideal but having them half done would also drive me crazy.
    I reread your making it presentable and master list post and would like to offer some suggestions.

    • Reply To This Comment ↓
      Lesley Ann Sturge
      February 4, 2015 at 12:30 pm

      Not sure what happened to the rest of my post.lol
      Cont.
      I definitely would not skim coat, redrywall if you are tearing this down. I would either finish with the blue or paint with a flat white.

      To make your place more presentable and not waste a lot of money while waiting for contractors, funds and finalized design plans I would paint everything white. All rooms. There’s nothing fresher than white walls. I would remove all the old drapes in the house and either put up cheap white blinds or your preferred fabric.
      In your sun room I would remove the carpet and paint the floor and ceiling, clean windows are covers and call it a day. It would be bright and clean and not hurt your eyes.
      I would work on your garage. It’s staying and you need a work space. You could then work on building your desk, planters, matts storage, redoing your table, etc while the rest of your home is clean of tools and materials.

      Hope you don’t think this is to pushy. Just my thoughts because you seemed a bit frustrated.
      Cheers
      Lesley Ann

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    kathy
    February 4, 2015 at 12:23 pm

    I guess the question I was left with was WHEN will you skimcoat? Are you going to live with half painted walls for a year before you can find time/motivation to skimcoat? IMO, if you can skimcoat now, do it. If not, finish painting in something (either the blue you started, or switch to a flat). But don’t leave a half painted wall for the long haul. JMO.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Shannon
    February 4, 2015 at 12:28 pm

    Hi Kristi….have you considered using a paint texture additive like the ones by Homax? In the interest of making it presentable, it could be a cheap and easy alternative.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Rebecca
    February 4, 2015 at 12:34 pm

    If I had to bet I would put money that Kristi skim coats and repaints. Looking forward to the skim coating demo.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Marie Claire
    February 4, 2015 at 12:37 pm

    Painting it and letting it go is exactly what making it presentable is all about.

    Do not texture the wall; just paint it and move on.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Ann
    February 4, 2015 at 1:06 pm

    If you skim coat the walls PLEASE do a video tutorial! We have stamped ceilings that we hate and I would love to skim coat them. Right now I’m removing the texture from our basement stairwell walls and ceiling and would love a good tutorial. I’ve search YouTube but have not found a good one.

    • Reply To This Comment ↓
      Ann
      February 4, 2015 at 1:29 pm

      P.S. If you are on the fence about trying flat paint, have your paint color mixed in SW test paint (since they are XL compared to others) and try it on one wall.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Susan
    February 4, 2015 at 1:11 pm

    I have to agree with you on the blotchy texture. I have skim coated before and sanding to get it all even wasn’t easy. Of course, if anyone can do a great job of it it’s you. If you are lucky enough to have a 1.99/yard fabric store where you live, hanging fabric on the walls for a few years might be an option, although I’m not sure if the uneven texture would show through.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Mrs Mike
    February 4, 2015 at 1:11 pm

    This is the same issue I have in my master bath. They gouged the wall terribly taking off wallpaper and through up a heavy texture (think house stucco texture…in your bathroom). So we have horrible texture AND we can still see the wall gouging. I just can’t live with it. We’re going to float it too. I’m not putting all that effort into moving electrical and enlarging the shower to end up with all that I will cringe at every time I look at them. Good luck!!!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Linda
    February 4, 2015 at 1:29 pm

    As a perfectionist and also someone who frequently turns “easy” projects into something much bigger, I definitely understand the idea of wanting to do it right the first time. But, with so many more obvious fixes in your house, I also get the reasoning behind just finish the painting in there now and calling it a day.

    What about a compromise? Didn’t go back and check, but if I remember correctly the bed/window wall is what you see opposite you when you walk into the room. The headboard (and thus a large part of that wall) will have curtains covering the textured wall. What if you just skim coated the parts of the bed wall that won’t be covered by the curtains, and leave the other walls alone? The bed wall is the focal point anyway, and what you see when you walk into the room, and that way you’ll have that nicely smooth/curtain covered wall to look at when you entering, showing off your bedside lights and headboard.

    Then, just ignore the texture on the other three walls for now and finish painting them in a flat paint? Those aren’t at noticeable (not what you would see as much/pay as much attention to), so don’t spend the time smoothing them out.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    barb
    February 4, 2015 at 1:33 pm

    I agree with you on this. Skim coat. So sorry though – I’m sure this is the LAST thing you even want to deal with.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Rachel Riles
    February 4, 2015 at 1:56 pm

    I would either get some texture paint, have it tinted and use a stiff brush to create almost a grass-like texture to it or perhaps use the old military wives trick where you take starch and adhere fabric to the wall since you know you are eventually going to re-do it anyway. Both are inexpensive and look great. Good luck!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    janpartist
    February 4, 2015 at 2:06 pm

    Hmmm, seems to me this could be an excellent opportunity to hone your faux grasscloth painting technique. It would take less time than skim coating, it would “hide” the texture, and let you move on.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Linz
    February 4, 2015 at 2:19 pm

    They do sell textured paintable wallpaper that is meant to cover rough finishes- it might take less time than a perfectionist skim coating a whole room, sanding, priming, and painting;-)

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Janet McKay
    February 4, 2015 at 2:41 pm

    I’m exactly the same. I wanted to paint my bedroom dark blue, but everyone told me it would be depressing (and since I suffer from clinical depression, they were concerned for me). I did about half the room & decided to live with it for awhile to see if I liked it. I also wanted to paint my cheap sliding closet doors, but didn’t know if it would work. So I did about half of them. Well, I like the colour – check – and the paint worked fine on the sliding doors – check. I don’t want to admit how long the room has been left that way. Years. Other rooms keep me from painting them, because of after-wallpaper-removal damage, a hallway wall with a slight bulge in it, etc. If you figure out how to overcome this in your home, I’d sure like to hear how!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Andrea
    February 4, 2015 at 2:58 pm

    I think paint it with flat and move on. Didn’t you say that there was going to be a lot of drapes on the wall anyways? I think it would be great to have a “done enough” room to relax in after a busy day. Of course you know the saying “pick your battles”, this doesn’t seem big enough to pick since you plan on doing a reno in 3 years. And let’s be honest, 3 years could easily turn into 2 years as equally as it could turn into 4 years. Best of luck, love your site as always.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Skevit
    February 4, 2015 at 3:02 pm

    With the bathroom remodel I was very vocal about not liking a 3 year temp remodel. Mostly because it would take months, la significant amount of money and put lots of materials into a landfill that didnt need to be there. But with this one. I am with you, if you want to skim coat, do it. This will not take you long, will make you happy and I think is well worth it for 3 years or more of use. Not to mention the walls are going out either way so a small skim coat is not new walls, you wont be putting up and tearing out objects unnecessarily, you will be adding a small layer to existing walls to make them good. To me this is doing it right because there is nothing wrong structurally with these walls and the only problem with them is the uneven coat adn the fix for the uneven coat is to texture it. This is not you covering it and pretending its not there, its not putting lipstick on a pig, its fixing the problem which is the wall texture.

    Its really up to you, but as I said I think if its worth it to you, this particular project is worth it in general. I understand the annoyance of texture, I faced it and got upset about it, though with time got over it and forgot about it in one of my old houses.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Judi in Tinton Falls
    February 4, 2015 at 3:25 pm

    While I’ll always support your talents and energy, I have to say that this time, I’d like you to consider that whatever you do in this room, it’s going to change in a few years. I’d select the most efficient, cost effective way to get to “I can live with this” status for these walls, do that and move on. I’m getting a sense of your casting about for anything that will feel like progress to you and not taking time to ask yourself if each “fix” really is so important that it must be done now and whether it moves you towards the general livability goal you’ve set for yourself. I believe that after you’ve taken the requisite breath or two or three, you’ll be able to move ahead.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Valerie
    February 4, 2015 at 4:19 pm

    I agree with you! Better to fix the problem now instead of having to live with it for 3 years. Like you said, I think an eggshell might disguise the texture more than the navy blue.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Lori Riggs
    February 4, 2015 at 4:42 pm

    There is a very thin drywall 1/4 inch maybe or less I’m not sure but this drywall is made to specifically cover up things like that…could you just drywall all the walks in the bedroom and tape/mud them to give you a very smooth finish? Yes. More expense and time but drywall does not cost that much. Just a thought…

    • Reply To This Comment ↓
      sarah
      February 4, 2015 at 5:10 pm

      This was my thought as well. We had a condo with totally messed up texture and we just put 1/4″ drywall on top of it. It was my first drywall project, though, so it was quite a challenge but I’d do it again.

      Or maybe do a wall panel treatment with 1/4″ melamine like the Little Green Notebook mudroom? Or melamine with moulding like Thrifty Decor Chick’s master bedroom accent wall?

      I don’t know which material is cheaper or which approach is quicker.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Mary Denney
    February 4, 2015 at 5:11 pm

    I TOTALLY understand what you are saying and doing. I’m in the same boat. Can’t figure out which room to finish…. After starting 2 other rooms !!!! Do what YOU feel like doing. That wat YOU WILL be happy

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Cheryl
    February 4, 2015 at 6:16 pm

    I never could imagine myself painting with flat paint after dealing with builder grade paint. Well, frugality won when lowes mixed my paint with flat sheen in error, 3 cans! They offered the paint for $10 vs the $41.98, we decided to take a chance and are very, very happy with the valspar reserve! It’s scrubbable!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Krilit
    February 4, 2015 at 6:31 pm

    Kristi,
    Do what will leave your mind at peacful rest every night when you crawl into bed knowing you are done with the day. Peace is worth whatever you have to do to have it.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    JoanneS
    February 4, 2015 at 7:00 pm

    You have to do what will make you happy, and if that means skim coating or smoothing the walls, go for it! If the remodel takes longer to get to, you’ll have some nice walls to admire till that happens. I always enjoy watching the process, whatever project you work on! 🙂

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    LBriscoe
    February 4, 2015 at 7:19 pm

    I know your perfectionism is screaming in your ears and in your heart. But what was your original short-term goal? To make the house “presentable.” My advice after decades of doing and re-doing is to keep your eye on the prize that comes first…a home you can enjoy on a daily basis while working on your forever home, even though the two are the same house. A house cluttered with a hundred different projects in various stages of being finished, causes stress. Stress is partly the reason you decided to make it presentable in the first place. Give it a lick (flat or satin paint, coordinating linens, some window dressing, some cheap but aesthetically pleasing art) and a promise (that total, FINAL redo that will satisfy the perfectionism that is so much a part of who you are). I worry that you are sliding right back into the place you wished to get away from. That final, perfect redo is going to take a long time. Do you really want to live in a house that’s NOT presentable in the meantime?

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Patricia Smith
    February 4, 2015 at 8:12 pm

    You wake up and fall asleep in that room every day…three years is a long time when you are unhappy with your surroundings! I don’t suppose using a power sander would be quicker and easier than floating? Either way, can you hire that done while you do something else or do you think you will float those walls yourself?

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    lori
    February 4, 2015 at 8:44 pm

    I don’t understand creating unnecessary work for yourself when you have so many necessary projects waiting in the wings. Like others have said, flat paint and art work will do the trick. And guess what – the art work doesn’t need to be museum quality either! 😉
    Seriously, nothing in life is perfect and life is too short to be spent in a house full of unpainted unfinished rooms.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Jan
    February 4, 2015 at 8:54 pm

    Kristi,

    I go along with the others that say use a ‘flat’ or even ‘matte’ paint Stay well away from eggshell or a satin finish. The higher the sheen, the more noticeable the rough surface. The dark colour makes the sheen even more noticeable because the light becomes bright light ‘suns’ or ‘stars’ all over the dark surface. Since you love navy (and so do I!!) paint it either a flat or matte navy. Give yourself a break to concentrate on the important projects. You’re going to hang some beautiful artwork anyway so the focus will be on it anyway. Save your time for the more important jobs. A couple of hours of painting and you’ll be set for several years. That high shine finish isn’t right for a textured surface.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Natalia
    February 4, 2015 at 8:59 pm

    I think that you have to weigh what is important to you– having a presentable room (painted in flat paint with large items hung on the walls) or doing it the way you think it should be in a finished presentation. I know which one I would pick, but that makes little difference. I think this question will come up again as you try to make things presentable, because presentable is not perfect. So every time you do one of these projects for this year, this type of dilemma will likely present itself.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Sheri Hepworth
    February 4, 2015 at 9:39 pm

    Colour me confused, At present, you have two different wall colours. And you hate it. So, your only options are to abandon painting completely or redo the surface of the walls? Why not just finish using up the paint you have and cover up at least a portion of the walls with artwork? Sure, you’ll dislike it, but it won’t be in two colours like it is now.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Danell
    February 4, 2015 at 9:51 pm

    I feel your pain. I do. When we remodeled our WHOLE house I had to make decisions on what finishes to use, I spent the money on things that would be more difficult to change later. Floors, tile, moulding. Things like faucets and bath cabinets would be easier to switch out later. As for you walls, I feel your pain there as well. Which is why I have all smooth walls in my house, even though the sheet rocker tried to talk me out if it. Have you tried just sanding the walls to knock down the texture? A palm sander would do the trick, try one section and then repaint and see how it looks. Good luck and keep up the good work. We are all rooting for you!!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Mary Anne Looby
    February 4, 2015 at 10:19 pm

    Hi everyone, I just read all the comments and we all sure have strong opinions on what Kristi should do. Let’s all agree to let her do what makes her happy. She has to live with it for three years or maybe thirty. Shoe molding seems to evoke a lot of dislike. I am like Krisiti, I think it adds to the baseboards. I have it everywhere in my home since I have hardwood floors everywhere. We had this house built for us and in our case the floors were installed right up to the walls, sanded and finished and then the finished carpentry was done. So the shoe molding in my house is not to fill in any gaps. I also have navy blue in my master suite. All three rooms. It is Sherwin Williams and is called Needlepoint Navy. I adore it. It is not at all depressing. I have accented it with red and wihite. I love red, white and blue, I guess I am just a patriotic person. I had the same colors in my bedroom growing up. Everything goes with navy blue. Red, pink, yellow, orange, green purple you can really do anything with it. I could not live with white walls, unless everything was white. Furniture, window treatments, pickled pine floors, Yikes, talk too much. Blessings

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Penny
    February 4, 2015 at 10:40 pm

    OK sit have a good cry, paint it white or cream and in flat wear it is not so noticeable and carry on. It does not matter what any one else thinks, it is your house and your hard work, and if it is not done to your liking you will never be happy, but this is something you can work on a little at a time after everything else is in order, you can sand a wall at a time if that is what you want to do. sand one wall paint one wall, so not a total loss right now project. so chin up smile on your face, there are worse things in the world and GOD has this. GOD bless.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Annalise
    February 4, 2015 at 10:45 pm

    Kristi,

    I also live in a “work-in-progress” home. We have lots of big plans on the back burner until we can afford them. I really wanted to get the main living area painted but discovered quickly how ugly the texture was….and didn’t know how to blend in a couple of large patches. We’ve talked about skim coating but the task seems daunting! Honestly I hope to hire it out. Do you plan to do it on your own?

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    JP
    February 4, 2015 at 11:04 pm

    I’m smiling because these look kind of like my walls, which are old plaster from the late 1920s. And I love them. I like imperfect things.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Juliette
    February 4, 2015 at 11:20 pm

    This may have already been mentioned, but why don’t you do a knock-down or spanish lace finish on your walls. It’s quick and easy, hides a multitude, and really beautiful.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Kathleen
    February 4, 2015 at 11:24 pm

    I think you need to define what presentable, not perfection, means to you, since that is your objective for quite a few projects on your list. I think you need to do the minimum you could live with. It might take 10 years for you to get to your big remodel project. Life happens, plans change. What can you happily live with in the interim? Only you can answer that. I wouldn’t be concerned with “wasted” time or money. If it makes you happy in the here and now it is never a waste!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Kimberly
    February 5, 2015 at 12:55 am

    “Living in a house filled with new, poor quality finishes and poorly done, rushed jobs would irritate me far more than just living in a house filled with decades-old, outdated finishes that I know I’ll eventually update.”

    ^This. I am a perfectionist, so much so that I get overwhelmed before I even begin something and get mired in researching the BEST way to do it, and overthinking the whole project, process, etc. One of the main reasons is I do not ever want to go back and re-do my work again, because I detest wasting money, time, resources, etc. That navy color is gorgeous, but if I decided I couldn’t live with that wall texture, it’d kill me to waste the pretty paint on the wall. It would literally keep me up at night (it’s not easy being so picky)!

    Your plans may be derailed a bit if you fix the wall texture, but if it’s going to make you happy, what’s the extra time it’ll take to fix it mean in the long run? Do what’s going to make you happy so you don’t end up despising your walls!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Laniece
    February 5, 2015 at 2:02 am

    Hi Kristi,
    I wonder what it is, about this particular blog post, that is making everyone so opinionated! It’s fascinating! But, like everyone else…I just read all 100+ comments to your bedroom wall post…and, I have opinions galore!! 🙂 Everyone has such great ideas and suggestions! It’s kind of fun!! However…a 3-year plan, at least in my world, can easily turn into a 15-year plan. 😉 If u actually want everyone’s opinions, here goes…I would probably paint your bedroom walls and scratch “make bedroom walls presentable” off of your list! 😉 Can’t wait to see what you decide to do! 🙂

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Jessica I
    February 5, 2015 at 6:16 am

    I have to say, that would bug me too. I live in an apartment so I have to live with what I am given, but is the textured walls a Texas thing? I am from Nebraska and we always had flat walls. Ours in our apartment are super textured and I hate them. Also, popcorn ceilings.

    • Reply To This Comment ↓
      MarillaAnne
      February 5, 2015 at 8:11 am

      Textured walls are at the very least a southern thing. Some textures are beautiful and some are very poorly created. This particular texture is probably from a period where they were trying to do things more and more mechanically in order to save time and money. It got worse. They started blowing it on the ceiling with supposedly acoustic dampening material and embedded sparkly bling. 😀

      • Reply To This Comment ↓
        Kristi Linauer
        February 5, 2015 at 3:10 pm

        Oh yes…the ceiling in my mom’s house, which was built in the 60’s, had the glitter in the popcorn texture. 😀 We painted over it sometime in the 80s or 90s, but left the texture. Interestingly, my mom’s house is one of the few that I’ve seen where the popcorn texture doesn’t bother me at all. I generally detest it.

    • Reply To This Comment ↓
      Lisa E
      February 5, 2015 at 11:18 am

      Most recently I’ve lived in OH and MI. My house in OH was built in either ’48 or ’58 (sorry, I always get it mixed up) and had these same textured walls.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Deb
    February 5, 2015 at 9:43 am

    Hi Kristi,
    Without reading through all your comments(don’t know how you do it?)
    Flat or Eggshell would help…I know you aren’t a fan of chalk paint, but that may be the way to utilize your current paint and knock down the gloss(just ad a little grout or plaster of paris to it) and salvage what you’ve started. You could brush your grass cloth pattern there or create a suede finish. I think it would be beautiful in your room against your headboard, and like others have said the rest of your decor would take center stage.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Deb
    February 5, 2015 at 10:49 am

    Flat paint is the way to go to diminish walls issues. I actually use flat paint throughout the entire house because a professional painter told me long ago you can always touch up the wall easily. Touch ups using any other sheen will require repainting the entire wall. And he was right when I tried to touch up a wall using egg shell. Unless you have kids making a mess on walls, how often are you going to have to do touchups.

    If I were you, I’d clean out all rooms of stuff. Hire a painter to paint all the rooms to get a temporary update done. Just pick a neutral color and commit. A good crew would have it done in 2 days or maybe less. It will give you a nice blank backdrop for each room when you are ready to do the major remodel. Don’t worry about each room’s flaws.

    • Reply To This Comment ↓
      Lisa E
      February 5, 2015 at 11:19 am

      I always use a washable flat and then an eggshell in the kitchen and bathroom. Love it.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Betsy
    February 5, 2015 at 11:53 am

    Since you already know it I guess it’s okay to say that those walls are pretty yuck. I wouldn’t be happy living with them for 3 more years, I’ll tell you that! Skim ’em!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    designdreamer
    February 5, 2015 at 12:51 pm

    TOTALLY get you on this! Not a real fan of all the “regular” texture in my 18 yo house, so I get that you don’t like what you’ve got! And yes part of MY paralysis is my need for perfection and insecurity in whether I can achieve it, not to mention hubby’s usual criticism.

    (On a completely selfish side note, I’m looking forward to a (mini?) tutorial on HOW TO skim coat the walls to reduce the texture, as this is something I’ve contemplated doing in my main bathroom so that I can put that faux marble texturing medium on it – I can’t remember WHAT it’s called, but I’ve already bought the product.)

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Sherry
    February 5, 2015 at 1:28 pm

    A good trick to use on walls that have texture on them is to take a light base paintcolor like for example, a sunny butter shade and make it your base. Then you take a complimentary shade that is richer and darker, like let’s use the example of a golden terra cotta and mix in some glaze. You rub that in a circular motion over the base and wipe thru as you do, letting the base color emerge. Sometimes it helps to add fine sand into your first base color to even out the texture. You need to work in small sections. I see that is a very large wall and that would be a big job. Sometimes a warm color helps the imperfections on a wall better than a metallic, harsh cold color like you have there.

    Pat yourself on the back for even starting this bathroom. It will pay off in the long run, according to Zillow, bathroom renovations are more desirable than kitchen renovations. And that bathroom obviously had to get done. Wish I was there to help, I live in Tyler and I would if I was closer!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Gloria S.
    February 6, 2015 at 3:53 pm

    Kristi, As always, the decision answer is yours…your house, your budget, your vision! Go with what you and Matt like the most! I’m behind you 100% either way you decide to go. Life is short, ENJOY!!!!

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