I Shutter to Think…

Let me just start by saying…I have NO IDEA why we did not do this so much sooner. I’m just going to come right out with this before and after:

Old shutters and front door

Updated shutters and front door

BAM! Now that’s a house! As you can guess, we decided to revamp the entire look of our house, but we had no idea it would have this big of an impact. It was definitely time to say goodbye to that dingy purple and hello to some bold shutters that pop. The results with this project were overwhelming to us. And the steps we took to get there were super simple. I give you…

How to Give Your House a Facelift

If eyes are the window to the soul then the shutters on these windows must be eyelashes and we just applied the blackest of the black, most voluminous mascara on the market! These shutters are seriously popping. Our neighbors have all taken notice and everyone agrees – they look great! And this shutter project only cost us about $100. How, you ask?

We bought several cans of matte black spray paint from Lowe’s and Home Depot. Lowe’s is our home improvement store of choice but they only had a few cans of Valspar Color Radiance in the matte black we wanted, so when we needed more spray paint, we had to run to Home Depot and ended up with several cans of Rustoleum Painter’s Touch, also in matte black of course. Both of these spray paints are fine for indoor/outdoor use, are heat and water resistant and quick drying for sure.

Valspar Color Radiance Matte Black

We started with the back and side of the house because we figured if something went wrong, at least it wouldn’t be visible to all passers-by. We removed each shutter, one-by-one, cleaned them with an all-purpose cleaner and laid them out on a tarp, slightly elevated thanks to several rogue bricks we had laying around.

Spray painting shutters

From there, we sprayed each of the shutters once, letting them dry for just 1 minute and then sprayed a second coat. The drying time was so fast, even with all that New Jersey humidity lingering in the air. Once the shutters were completely dry, we hung each back in their positions. We numbered the back of each one according to their position on the house going from left to right so putting them back up was a cinch. That’s it! So easy and the spray paint only cost about $3 – $4 a can. This whole portion of the project took about one full day to complete.

Spray painted shutters

The front of the house is where things got a little tricky. The day after we completed the back and side of the house, we began to tackle the front. We removed every shutter, numbered the backs, cleaned them with an all-purpose cleaner and spray painted shutter #1 when we realized, these shutters juts weren’t going to cut it. Many of them had holes in them and for the most part they had all seen better days. The quality also just wasn’t there. The shutters in the back of the house were so much nicer than the ones on the front of the house (which actually doesn’t surprise us at all because that’s just how things go around here). We decided we were going to have to change our plans and purchase new shutters for the front – that’s 6 new shutters.

Here we are thinking each of these shutters would run us around $30 a piece…not true! As it turns out, shutters are sold in pairs (why didn’t I think of that?) and it cost about $30 per pair, so around $90 total. That, with the spray paint, this entire project cost us around $100 to complete and the results are priceless (or at least we think so).
In short, we purchased the new shutters and spent just another hour or two to get them positioned on the house with no trouble at all. The new ones even came with cool little snap covers for the screws, so the end product is clean, sophisticated and really gives that buttoned up look we were aiming for.

If you’re looking to give your house a facelift, refinishing or replacing shutters is definitely a great place to start. We refinished the shutters that were in decent shape and replaced the ones that just weren’t going to cut it and it really paid off.

Updated shutters and front door

You may have also noticed we painted the door and that’s a whole separate blog post so stay tuned to learn more about the color and the story behind it.


Color Me Crazy

Okay, so it’s been just about a year and a half since we moved into our house. We’ve painted every room (with the exception of the basement which is a work in progress for sure), we’ve painted ceilings, cabinets, shelves, doors, trim…you name it, we painted it. Our motto has been “down with brown” since SO much of the color in our house was brown before we started attacking it from every angle with paint. We look at the before and after photos and it’s hard for us to believe that all it took was a little paint…

Kitchen before and after:

Outdated kitchen cabinets

Painting kitchen cabinets, kitchen remodel from Fresh Nest Blog

Doors and trim before, progress and after:

Painting doors and trim white

With that being said, however, we may have gone just a tad overboard with paint when it came to wall color. As we mentioned in a previous post about the office, we went so crazy with paint right off the bat that we had a sort of “rainbow in my house” kind of theme going on. Between the “Minted Lemon” living room and “Sunbeam” office, there wasn’t much cohesion. Thus, we switched out the yellow for a soft, almost white, blueish green called “Wave’s Crest.” And a before and after of this:

Yellow Office Sunbeam

Office Painted with Wave's Crest

Now we’re heading back to the drawing board to tackle the living room. I love Minted Lemon. It’s the color I swore I wanted, but now that we take a step back and look at the entire house, it doesn’t seem to make much sense. Based on our rug choice, I want to take the walls in the living room in a slightly different direction. We’ve been looking at a ton of different colors, but we keep coming back to lighter, more muted and natural looking greens and goldish-brownish colors. Here are a few of the top contenders at the moment:

Living room paint colors

What do you think? Weigh in! Comment below or head over to our Facebook page to tell us what color you think we should paint the living room. You can also follow us on Pinterest to keep up with what inspires us!


Paintaholics

It’s no mystery that changing to a new color of paint is one of the easiest ways to change up the vibe of a room. It’s also is a great way to bring something cohesive to your entire home’s color palette.

When we started painting after we moved in we made some pretty bold decisions, and learned some pretty serious lessons about color choices. We chose two bold colors for the living room and office. We’ve kept Behr’s Minted Lemon in the living room, but our choice of Olympic One’s “Sunbeam” has always worried us. Here’s the office as it appeared a few weeks ago.

Yellow Office Sunbeam

In the photo it doesn’t look that bad I suppose, but walking into that room everyday was a bit of a jarring experience. I’m not one to be afraid of color or bold decisions, but I just don’t think we have that kind of house. Maybe with a little more natural light it could have worked.

Wave's Crest versus Sunbeam

The new color we chose was “Wave’s Crest” by Valspar. As soon as we started painting we were worried we’d gone too light or too white. Once we had finished the room, let it dry and looked at it the next morning I think we realized we’d made the right decision. Then we cleaned up the trim with a new coat of white paint and we were done.

Office Painted with Wave's Crest

Overall I think it really brightens up the room and if nothing else it looks a lot better with the finish on our floors. The yellow may have been more tolerable when we had carpet, but with the refinished hardwood it really clashed.

Let us know if you think we’ve made the right color decision. Stay tuned to find out what we paint next, the kitchen? the basement? or a repaint of the living room?