Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Beauti-Tone Paint - The First Test! {+ A Powder Room Sneak Peek!}

Do you know why I'm the right person to test paint? Because I am the world's worst painter, that's why.

Who better to tell you what the job is going to be like for you other than someone who does everything wrong? Repeatedly.

At that point, your experience can only be better, right? You would not do everything wrong, and I am only 'testing it out'... yup, that's my story. I love Sarah Richardson et al, as much as the next gal interested in home decor and design, but I don't hold a candle to her and her team of experts. Do I love our completed rooms? Damn straight! Are they easy, by any stretch of the imagination? God, not even close.

So all this to say, the powder room is painted. Is it perfect? Ha! No. There are touch-ups needed everywhere. There are imperfections in about as many places too. It's nice though, and my vision is coming along nicely, hiccups notwithstanding.

I think my biggest problem is that I don't follow advice well. In the past, every time I've purchased paint, some lovely newly retired house painter of 20 years, gives me a new piece of advice and I may or may not try it. When I do, it rarely makes my job easier and generally makes it take longer (you know, take your time and do it right and all) so I've yet to be blown away. This is not limited to nice retired men either. I googled all sorts of reading material on painting stripes when I painted the Mini-Mister's nursery, guess when I decided to take that advice? Oh yeah, totally when the job was half-done and I was on the verge of a pregnant, hormonal, nervous breakdown. Know what wasn't different about this experience? Everything. I was up to my old tricks again. I am literally the laziest person ever, at the very least when it comes to painting, though the jury is still out on the rest. I hate prep work, I get tired mid-way through the job, and it usually takes me longer to fix my short cuts than it would have had I done it right in the first place. I'm going to make an excellent example for my kids. I'm that apartment painter that paints dust and hair into the walls... I'm at peace with it mostly. Really.

Now that I've aired my dirty laundry for you, I'll share my first Beauti-Tone experience.

The project: Main floor powder room.
The paint: Beauti-Tone Natura series
The colours & finishes: Starry Night (dark navy blue) in eggshell and Puff Ball (white) in pearl.

First and foremost let me say - if anyone ever hears me breathe that I want to go dark again... Slap me. Seriously, I'll need the wake-up call. Maybe next time, I'll do it right the first time and all will be right with the world, but probably not. It's just best to steer clear.That aside, you want to hear about paint, not my life choices.

I met a very nice woman, Kate, when I went to pick up my cans of paint for this project. She was very knowledgeable and explained that both the 'Designer's Series' and the 'Natura' brands were basically comparable, save only for the fact that Natura had no VOCs. Since we've a wee boy at home and our family is in the process of growing (why do I do projects when I'm pregnant... why?), I figured that the fewer VOCs, the better. Natura it was; Kate mixed up my cans and sent me on my merry way to paint my heart out!

Beauti-Tone Natura caught me off guard when I first popped open the can. I want to describe it by saying it was 35% cream, to everybody else's 10% (mayyybe 18). This should have been my first indication that I was out of my league and to follow the advice I had been given by the lovely man (Alan) and owner (Peter), at my local Home Hardware store, but I don't do that kind of thing... Too easy. So here I go schlepping this gorgeous colour of (near) paste on the wall all willy-nilly. Did Alan and Peter warn me that with a colour this dark I should make sure that I have enough on my roller? Yup. Did they tell me that if my walls were stark white and I was electing not to independently prime (there is some mixed in), that I should anticipate the potential for a third coat? Oh yes. Also, did they tell me that I should ensure to only roll in one direction, so as not to pull the paint back off the wall? You bet they did. Did I listen? Pfft, no. What I should actually say is that I didn't listen, at first. By wall #4, I changed my insubordinate ways and admitted that I didn't know what I was doing. I started following their advice and wouldn't you know... it was the best wall of the bunch! You're surprised, I know. So rinse and repeat, I went to do my second coat (some time later as I was tired; remember when I said I was pregnant?) and stupidly thought that it would be fine if I just fixed the spots where the white was showing through. Ugh. Cue blotchy walls. I. Will. Never. Learn. Told you.

Fast forward to a few days later when I decide that the only way to fix this is by doing a proper coat all around the room (and a little praying wouldn't hurt either). I noticed that I had nearly depleted my gallon of paint through all my earlier nonsense and realized that I would likely have to get a second for my tiny powder room... *sadness*. Off I went last Friday and stopped in at Home Hardware on my way home from work. Ran into Alan again who confirmed that a good coat should fix my mess and with that, he mixed me up a new can of Starry Night, and sent me on my way...

This is the part you should all pay attention to -

Don't do what I do. Get a grip on how much paint it takes to do something and you'll be a lot happier in the end. I DIDN'T NEED THE CAN, PEOPLE!! Lo and behold, while 'finishing up the existing can first', I didn't finish it. Silly girl. Needless to say, I now have a basically full can of dark blue paint that I don't know what to do with! Oops. I'm sure I'll find a use for it eventually.

Three (well, two and half) coats later, and my walls look pretty spiffy! My complaints about the process lie pretty much only with me, and even if there were little things with the paint that gave me trouble (even though it was still probably my fault), the room looking the way it does and the beautiful dark walls have washed it all away. I should also mention that the Natura line had next to no odour at all. This was perfect for our current situation coupled with the fact that I was painting a small box of a room. Kate was right, and I was pleased with the choice.

Here's a sneak peek so you can see the paint/walls -

Soon, I'll be able to reveal the finished room to you so that you'll actually be able to see the light and how it all came together. For now, note the gorgeous jewel-tone walls (walls seem purple in this picture, but colour is in fact a deep, dark blue), the new tiles, the new fixture (ahem, the loo), and a real sneak peek of the light. As it turns out, I think the thickness of the initial paint is what led to the lovely finish. Despite my best efforts, I wasn't able to screw it up in the end... it actually looks nice!

Stay tuned for the real reveal, and shortly thereafter, some new painting adventures!

Thanks for the experience Beauti-Tone!

**Editor's note: I was provided with the paint for review, however all opinions are my own.**

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