Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Kitchen Refreshing: New Paint

If any room should be fresh, it's the kitchen. And fresh, to me, means bright colors, which I kept trying to add to my kitchen and failing miserably. It just WANTED muted colors like sea foam. I'm not knocking sea foam - I've got my share of it around here, but Lord knows I need energy when it comes to cooking. So bright colors were a must. I started comparing my kitchen to others with brighter color schemes and found the culprit. My cream walls. Yes, they were neutral, but with the taupe counters, everything was on the warm side. 

I decided a cool grey would be the perfect backdrop for my bright colors. I also knew I wouldn't have time to paint before our California trip, and in a break-through attempt to NOT bite off more than I can chew, I set the paint swatch aside. When we returned from California we were broke because that little tire blow-out cost us $700. Yikes and yikes. I told my sister about the dilemma and she said I should see if any of our leftover paint was light enough to be tinted the color I wanted. She'd done this at Sherwin Williams and was happy with the result, costing them nothing. 

We had a half-full five gallon bucket of Daisy White from a previous remodel. l drug it over to my friends at Pittsburgh Paint. Well, first I called because I didn't want to haul that puppy around for nothing, and the guy (who wasn't the manager) hesitated at first. That was my cue to play the, "Sherwin Williams will do it, so I was hoping you could too,"card. I finished with a, "I'd really like to use it since, you know, I can't throw it away!" Oh, yes. He was sure it would be no problem. 

So I lugged it in and they took it from there. They mixed paint I'm sure was completely separated after six years of sitting around and poured a gallon into a new bucket. They tinted it and mixed it. So we went from big ol' bucket of paint with skins and separation to a perfectly blended, clean gallon of paint. In the color I wanted. For free. Wow, people. My first thought was, "I have to tell them!" and by that I meant you. 

If you're not a chronic repainter, you may not know that it's tricky to get rid of extra, unwanted paint. You can't dump it in your trash unless it's completely dry, so you pretty much have to finish your bucket of paint and let the little that's inside dry out. Or you can try and absorb it with cat litter and dry it that way? That's what the people said when we went to the "Dump all the stuff you can't put in your garbage" event only to be told they wouldn't take paint. Since then, I've seen used paint for sale at our local Goodwills so they must accept it. If stores near you do as well, that's probably the easiest way...

Stone Gray by PPG (available at Pittsburgh Paints)

Anyhoo, I had this gorgeous paint now and a free afternoon. After lunch I set the kids up with a movie which took us clear 'til quiet time and that lasted until Brian got home. So all by myself, with music to inspire me, I painted away, cutting in to my little heart's content. I even tried an idea from Pinterest and liked it:

Maybe you've seen this on Pinterest and now you're wondering about me because you thought I was trying to be green and tree-huggy. Well, you're right. I am and this wastes a little foil, but it saves a lot of water. I always feel sad at the amount of water it takes to clean up after painting and this is a big help. For the record, I'm mainly excited about this tip because it makes clean-up faster and easier, since I hate that part. I'm definitely motivated by laziness, but I wasn't willing to throw the environment under a bus either. Hence, the thought-process I just shared. 

Did you see how I just took something simple and made it super complicated? Yeah. I can do that with just about anything. Welcome to my brain....but on the practical side, be sure your foil runs length-wise in the pan because if there's a seam from side to side, your roller starts to pull at it. 

I also considered trying the rubber-band around the paint can idea (to wipe off your brush) but my can was heavy and I didn't want to carry it for the cutting in. I used my roller pan most of the time instead. 

So there's a kind of boring, technical post about my reasons for painting and the set up, saved only by the oober-exciting money savings tip about re-tinting old paint. I haven't tried it at Menards and such, but I did talk with the people at Ace Hardware and they said they could do it if I understood they couldn't guarantee the color. So don't be afraid to ask. Tomorrow I'll be back to show you how it turned out!


  1. I had no idea you could have leftover paint tinted! What a great idea. Are we going to see any pictures of the repainted kitchen?

  2. I'm so freak'n excited. I have a HUGE bucket of white paint! Yay! I wonder if they would break it down into multiple cans of various colors. I'd be willing to pay some for that if it saved me any money.

    1. That's wonderful! I was afraid I was the only one who had stockpiled paint and this post wouldn't be that helpful. :)

  3. I have some more painting tips for you. In a pinch, instead of foil you can use the plastic grocery bags over the paint tray. I do, however love the pre-molded plastic liners they sell at the paint stores. You'll need to know if your tray is deep or shallow, because the key to those, is a tight/matching fit on your paint tray. I also use plastic grocery bags to cover my paint tray when I need a break (might need 2 to fit the entire length). I also use plastic bags to wrap my roller or paintbrush tightly. They can stay like that overnight (or even a day) without drying out. As for leftover paint. The Ecostore in Lincoln takes them. You can also find a huge variety of colors there to buy. I also, always browse the mistints in the hardware stores. I have scored some awesome, super cheap paint that way!

    1. Oh yes! thanks for mentioning all these great tips. I love wrapping my paintbrush, since they can get dry even between coats.