Y’all know that for months now, I’ve been dreaming of having a black and white design on the floor in the back entry of my studio. Whether I used tile or hardwood flooring, I was determined to have a black and white design in place of a rug. (Rugs and floor cloths just aren’t wheelchair friendly, and this area needs to be easily accessible to Matt.) Well, I finally got my design painted, and just in time because my polyurethane for the floor should be arriving today! I went with a black and white painted chevron floor design, and here’s how it turned out…
Please excuse my dusty walls and doors. 🙂 Those of you who are able to rent truly dust-free drum sanders for hardwood flooring where you live are very fortunate. I’ve only found one place in the Waco area that rents drum floor sanders, and let’s just say that they’re FAR from dust-free. I got the walls in the studio cleaned off, but clearly I overlooked this back entry. 😀 Now it’ll have to wait until the floors are polyurethaned, because I don’t want to stir up dust right before I polyurethane the floors.
Anyway, back to the painted black and white chevron floor. Here’s how I painted the design…
I used ScotchBlue painters tape for walls, wood floors, and freshly painted surfaces. It worked perfectly, and I didn’t have one single bleed through (bleed under?) on the whole design. I painted the entire design in one day, and got perfectly crisp lines. Just be sure to burnish the tape down really well with your finger right before painting.
I started by taping off the area where I wanted to create the design by measuring 12 inches from each wall.
Using a 6-inch roller for smooth surfaces, I gave the whole area two coats of paint, sanding lightly by hand with 220-grit sandpaper between coats.
I used Behr ceiling white paint right out of the can (i.e., no tint added to it), but I did mix in about 4 ounces of water to the quart of paint in hopes that the more watery consistency would allow the paint to soak into the wood better rather than building up on the surface. It seemed to work really well.
Now I’m sure you’re wondering, “Why ceiling paint?” I chose to use that because it’s a very flat paint, and for some reason, it just makes sense in my mind to use flat paint if I’m going to polyurethane over the top. Flat paint has a slightly rougher feel to it than the shinier sheens, so it’s almost like it has “tooth” built into it, and in my mind, that creates better adhesion for the polyurethane topcoat. Perhaps I’m just making that up in my mind 😀 but I never put polyurethane over semi-gloss or glossy paints. If I’m going to polyurethane over paint, the highest sheen I would use is an eggshell, but I almost always opt for flat. And it doesn’t get much flatter than ceiling paint.
Next, I measured and marked the vertical lines. I wanted an even number of sections, and I wanted the sections as close to 12 inches wide as possible. My taped off area for the whole design was about 67 inches wide, so I divided that into six sections that were just over 11 inches wide. Then I taped off those vertical sections so that I could work on the first, third, and fifth sections at the same time. In other words, I placed the painters tape on the outside edges of the lines for those sections.
Next, I marked and measured for the diagonal design. I wanted each diagonal stripe to be between 7 and 10 inches high, and the vertical section just happened to be 63 inches high. That made it pretty easy! I just marked and measured every 7 inches on both pieces of tape on either side of each vertical section, and then used my painters tape to tape off the diagonal design.
And again, I placed my tape on the outside edges of every other section. This makes it look like some sections are larger than the alternating sections, but once the tape is removed, they’re the same size.
I used black Behr paint in a flat finish. (There’s no color name or number. I just went to the desk and asked for solid black paint.) I painted two coats of black on each alternating section, sanding by hand with 220-grit sandpaper between coats.
Another reason I love using flat paint when I know I’ll be polyurethaning over the top is because flat paint dries very fast. So by the time I got the third vertical section painted with the first coat, the first section was already dry and ready for sanding and recoating. As soon as the second coat was on, and while it was still wet, I removed the painters tape.
And here’s how it looked with all three vertical sections painted and the tape removed.
With those sections done, I could go ahead and remove the tape separating the vertical sections.
At this point, you can either create a regular chevron pattern, or you can create an offset chevron pattern. It just depends on where you put the tape when connecting the sections. You can see the difference between the two in this post.
I had planned on doing an offset chevron pattern, but in the end (because of my intense need for symmetry), I decided to go with a standard chevron design. So using painters tape, I connected the first sections of the black pattern. I painted this in the same way — two coats of paint, sanding by hand with 220-grit sandpaper between coats.
And here’s how it looked with all of the sections connected, painted with two coats, and the painters tape removed…
And finally, I wanted to paint a thin border around the whole thing. I did this by adding another strip of painters tape right along the outside edge of the tape that was bordering the design…
And then I removed the original tape bordering the design, leaving this border.
And after taping off that border on the other side (i.e., placing tape right on top of the actual design all around the edges), I painted the border with two coats of paint, sanding by hand with 220-grit sandpaper between coats.
With the second coat still wet, I removed the tape, and my design was finished.
Now if someone can just tell me how to get dust off of dark walls without leaving them streaky, I’ll be forever grateful to you. 😀
And of course, at this point, you’ll just have to imagine what the area will look like with actual door casings, which will be painted white, and will go a long way towards adding some brightness to the area and giving it that beautiful, finished look. Right now, it’s still got that whole construction zone vibe to it.
And here’s the view from the studio towards the back doors. Sorry for the mess. I removed that last bit of painters tape at 11:00pm last night, and headed straight to bed. So for now, you’ll have to look around it. 🙂
Fingers crossed that my polyurethane comes in today as scheduled! I’m so ready to get these floors completely finished so that I can move on to door casings and finishing up the bathroom. I’ll pretty much be at a standstill on everything else until I get the floors finished.
I had a problem with the wood tannins bleeding through the white paint. You can see what that looked like, as well as my fix for it, in this post…