I know I said that I was completely done painting (and re-painting the house) and at the time I really meant it. I absolutely love very inch of our home and really, really there isn't anything that I want to change, but (you all knew there was a but coming right?) I get antsy. I get antsy when I get stressed and right now I'm feeling incredibly stressed (actually terrified) about what is happening in my country right now. Over the weekend Liam and I were pretty sick which meant we were homebound. I wanted to be at Logan airport offering what little legal skills I have, or protesting in the streets but instead I was home watching it all unfold and out of no where I decided that this week I was going to paint the upstairs bathroom.*
It sounds stupid, but looking back on my life I've realized that painting walls is how I cope in stressful situations. I painted my childhood bedroom a buttery yellow when I was applying to law school, and my entire foray into interior design came about during my three year struggle with secondary infertility, when Liam was a toddler and I would paint our house almost every day during his nap time. I also remember being 7 or 8 months pregnant with Gray and somehow I roped my mother-in-law into painting the nursery and our master bedroom with me because I just felt as though it needed to be done, aka I was panicking about having another baby- 11 foot ceilings be damned!
I am a person who likes to be in control and when I feel as though I can't control certain situations I start painting. Since I have zero artistic ability, I paint walls versus canvases and you know what? It really helps. It's a simple repetitive task and it actually takes a lot of thought if you aren't serious about your taping (I am not) which makes it very close to meditation. What I like is the feeling of completing something big, and the fact that you can do it in a day. When you paint a room the change is immediate and there is such a sense of accomplishment, I just find that after I've painted a room / wall things are often a little clearer in my own mind and I feel a lot more in control, even when dealing with things that are completely out of mine.
I almost don't want to tell you how many times I've painted our upstairs bathroom. I want to say five but it is likely more than that. It's a small enough space that I can really bang out three coats in a single day and it happens to be the space in our home that I like the least. From the day we have moved in I have hated the tile we picked for that room and ever since I've been trying to mask it. First there was the gallery walls, then paint, then brighter paint, then white, then mint... they all looked great but nothing ever made me really love it. Or more precisely nothing ever made me love the tile. I figured this was a lost cause and honestly, changing it hadn't even crossed my mind until this weekend.
On Sunday, I woke up, donated to the ACLU and instantly remembered that I had a gallon of paint left over from when I painted the master bedroom. It just so happened that it was unopened and it's my favorite color by Farrow and Ball, the famed "Downpipe." The bathroom tile (which you can see in the image above) actually has some gray in it which made me think that it could make me like it, or at least hate it less. Liam is home sick from school today and tomorrow so it's almost like old times, when I would paint away my fear, although I'm afraid that in this case this is just the beginning.
Listen, I realize this will change nothing in the world but feels like self care for me and hey, we will get a new bathroom out of the deal so it's kind of a win win for all of us here. You know I will be posting some afters and well, it's going to be a long few years so I have a feeling that this isn't going to be the last room that gets painted around here. I really think that the charcoal color is the way to go in here, and if not... it's only paint and I know just the girl for the job.
All this talk of Downpipe means I again have to show just how much I love this color. I was really on the fence when we decided to paint our bedroom such a dark hue but as the years have gone by my love for this color has only grown. At first I was worried that a charcoal bedroom would be depressing but it really is just the opposite. It's cozy and warm and it really makes the perfect climate for sleeping. If you are looking for a little mental clarity yourself, might I suggest giving your bedroom a little refresh? Once you go dark I can tell you that you won't go back!
Stay tuned, I'll be shooting the space next week so I will have some good before and afters coming your way!
(Photography by Sarah Winchester)
* I just want to let you all know that I've been struggling keeping this blog going given recent events. I don't want to become entirely political and I know that this is not why you all come here every day. There are writers far greater than I that offer real solutions and I won't pretend to be one of them. The past few weeks it's been so hard for me to write about such frivolity when there are such serious issues facing this world, but on the flip side I love the outlet that I get when I read my favorite blogs that talk about all the same nonsense that I do. It's been a real struggle and it's been the reason my posting has been a bit spotty since November. I don't plan on stopping or changing my daily content but I just wanted you to know that I know that this is all B.S. compared to what is really going on in the actual world. I feel like acknowledging that is enough for now for me to keep going. We all need a little respite and I hope that this continues to be a place for that. You all bring a lot of joy to my life and I hope I can bring the same to yours. Xx