Farewell Forest

The enormous tree stencil in the kitchen was a ton of work, but the time had come to move on and bid farewell to our beautifully busy wall. It served as the perfect distraction, but I no longer needed it – my countertops and cabinets were finally ready to take center stage.

I never intended the kitchen to be so matchy-matchy with both the cabinets and wall painted Behr English Channel. I guess that’s just what happens, when you really love a color combo. As soon as the cabinets were complete, I knew that the trees needed to go.

Months later, HGTV Magazine introduced me to a product that I was desperate to try out in my home. I knew it would require repainting my wall, and (more importantly) convincing the hubby that a $250 investment in our kitchen floor was worthwhile. (For more on that topic: Check out this post!)

In my experience, the best way to get your way demonstrate the importance and beauty of a major design change is to:

  1. PROVIDE A VISUAL
  2. SHOW COST-BENEFIT ANALYSIS
  3. (When all else fails) BEG – with dignity of course.

 

I was having trouble providing an adequate visual of the final product. In the end, I knew I’d never convince my husband to trust my design concept without painting over the trees. When the moment came, I wasn’t all that sad to say, “Farewell trees!”

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Choosing a color was the easy part. I wanted the wall to match the kitchen backsplash. I’d painted those walls Benjamin Moore Revere Pewter a few years ago.

Now to collect the paint…not so easy.  Hypothetically, just take the subway to Benjamin Moore – with a toddler, and return home with a quart or two of paint – and a toddler.  This might not sound that complicated, but when you are scaling stairs with a stroller and a 22 pound wiggle-machine, or wearing him on your back – adding 2 quarts of paint to your load is no small feat!

I was scheming to make a baby-free run on Sunday, but I opted to stare mindlessly at my phone next to my husband instead. (Note to self: Do something more productive so you don’t have to admit your horribly lazy habits on your blog).

On Monday, I went to see if our new local hardware store could scan the Revere Pewter paint chip and create its recipe on site. They are a super small operation, and their computer systems weren’t up to the task. I took a chance (on Kip’s patience) and compared their Valspar paint chips to Revere Pewter in case anything was a close enough match. I was even willing to settle, but I didn’t have to!

The match was so close to perfect, that I couldn’t even tell the colors apart! I took the paint chip home to check it in my actual lighting. Is this an omen or what?!

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The next day I picked up a quart of flat Soft Pelican and hoped the paint chip wasn’t a fluke!

Before I could slap it up on the wall (and make my point about the floor), I needed to do a bit of prep work to prevent the trees from living on indefinitely. I took a fine (and eventually a medium) grit sanding block to the most pronounced features of the trees, in hopes that I could smooth away the branches and bark.

It took a surprising amount of elbow grease!

A few friends (the stenciled birds) from the past popped up as I was smoothing away layers.

 

 

 

Finally it was smooth enough to paint! I taped and prepped during nap time, so I could work as quickly as possible.

I waited for bedtime, so the baby would sleep hard through any noise, bright lights, and possibly minor fumes. My husband was out of town, so I turned on some music and got to work!

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After a second coat, and some edge work – my work was done!!

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And just like that – it’s as if the trees were never there at all!

Before, During, and After

 

TADA!

And NOW – to check my tiles!!

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What do you think? Are they worth a $200-300 investment in our kitchen? The size of the decal won’t match up exactly with the current tile, so I’m not sure how that will affect the appearance. I can’t return them if I change my mind because they are only printed after I place an order. Also remember, this print is 4 times as large as pictured here.

What should I do?!!!

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