Sunday, April 26, 2015

Art Is A Process (And So Is My Tiny Kitchen Ceiling)

While is it true that many who know me may tell you that I rush, head long, into projects without completely thinking it through; that same group of people would also tell you that they don't know anyone who is better at implementing a plan than I am. While I have been known to rush to help after a car accident, and come away with my hands covered in blood, I have also spent days thinking about a single paint color choice.

Building my tiny house has taught me that there are certainly times to rush in, and not worry about what I don't know, to figure it out as I go, and other times I should proceed cautiously and slowing and deliberately.  

Maybe these dichotomous traits are what makes me the perfect tiny house builder!

When I started my build I knew I would have exposed 2x6's over the kitchen ceiling for structural reasons.  And my sponsor generously provided OSB for the loft floors so those two decisions were easy and I didn't put too much thought into them.  Easy and Free?  Check!

Once the structure was in place I started immediately thinking about interior decor. After seeing very cool pictures on Pinterest where someone used vinegar and steel wool to make a stain I decided to try it.  I following their instructions, left the "brew" sit overnight and stained my ceiling joists the next morning.  

Even if you follow the instructions on Pinterest, it does not guarantee that your project 
will turn out just like it looks on Pinterest. 

I didn't hate it, really, but it certainly turned out WAY darker than I thought it would.  So, I decided to go with the flow.

Then I had a great idea to cover the ceiling, between the joists with bead board, and even though the bead board is pretty difficult to work with, I thought it looked pretty good.

Somewhat satisfied with the look, I decided to use bead board on the main ceiling also. (even though the overall look was a bit more nautical that I would prefer)  Putting bead board on the ceiling, however, turned out to be the WORST idea I could ever have had.  It was truly, truly, horrible, it sagged, and looked like total crap after we installed only one sheet.  

So, we tore it down, went back to the drawing board, and put plywood on the ceiling. Since I am an anal (ish) designer that would mean I would need to re-think my kitchen ceiling choice.  I tore out the kitchen ceiling panels, and then primed and painted the OSB.  I knew I should probably seal the OSB so the kitchen moisture wouldn't be as likely to be absorbed, and I wanted to see if it would look good just to leave it painted.  Well, it looked OK, but I'm not a fan of OK.....I want "WOW".

I don't know how, but there are 13 spaces between the joists over the kitchen and bathroom and I ended up with 12 unique pieces.  Needless to say, the guy cutting the plywood at the local hardware store was NOT impressed with my cut list.

So, now I have the plywood installed on the main ceiling and it looks really great (with glitter in the paint!) and now I have a stack of lovely plywood panels to insert between each joist in the kitchen and bathroom.  But, after having primed and painted between the joists, there is now splatter on them.

Sigh......  Seriously?

So I sanded them.  An ugly job, let me tell you. And then I sealed them with latex based polyurethane. From this view, they look pretty stunning but one of the challenges of a tiny house is that the decor choices need to be cohesive and now I'm concerned that my loft walls look too "matte".
(are you laughing at me, right now, because I am laughing at myself for sure!)

There are three rules to designing: 1) Color 2) Texture 3) Bling

I have a TON of texture with my barn wood walls in the lofts, lots of bling with the silver colored leather furniture and my stunning plumbing fixtures and vintage appliances. But I was sorely lacking color.  So yesterday I went back to the paint store with the goal of finding "a PERFECT shade of green".

This is a lovely shade of green that I painted in a piece of scrap plywood that I currently love.  It is both neutral AND adds color.  Now, all I have to do is decide if I want to paint the ceiling panels in this color, or the kitchen walls.

While all of this might sound a bit scatter brained, and like a waste of time, this is the part of this project that I love; the creative part.  Sometimes when I get bogged down in the mechanics of putting up insulation or blocking (which I truly hate doing) I take a break and solve a creative problem or search for creative solutions to my decor dilemmas.  

I am sitting here, covered in grey sanding dust, and I very much need a shower.  But, as I looked at my latest selfie I could only think of how much fun "she" appears to be having.  Creating anything, from tiny houses, to canvas painting, is a process that does not often turn out as you intended it to.

Often, however, it turns out SO MUCH BETTER!! 

Art is a process, and so is my tiny house ceiling, and so is life.  So rather than getting frustrated when things don't go as planned, consider how much more fun it is to go with the flow and find another solution.  

A green, plywood, sealed, and amazing, solution......

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