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Archive for the ‘Creative Fun Projects!!’ Category

Kathy’s Creative Carpeting Solution

Kathy U. needed new living room carpeting. With five active children and a busy contractor husband, the stone-fireplaced area took a beating.

 

Big problem: The family’s budget couldn’t cover that size of expense.

 

Challenge: So, the Porter County artist, homemaker and volunteer got creative!

 

Solution: Basically, here’s how Kathryn re-carpeted the room with a Currier & Ives picturesque view of the countryside.

 

  1. She selected a basic patchwork quilt color scheme.
  2. She designed a simple block pattern of squares and rectangles.
  3. For months, she haunted area carpet stores, warehouses, installation companies, etc. and purchased, or was given, over 150 remnants with similar fibers, weaves and backing
  4. She sorted the remnants by color-hue family, into large separate cardboard boxes.
  5. Next, she laid the pieces onto the bare floor, by this time stripped of the original worn carpeting. She paid close attention to placing colors and pieces so they complemented each other. And, their weaves all went in the exact same direction.
  6. Settling on the color-pieces arrangement, she consulted with the family. “Yes,” they agreed. It was a “GO, Mom!”
  7. Starting at one corner, she turned over each piece and wrote a number on its backing.
  8. Based on each remnant’s size, she drew a grid on the room’s floor space, using a carpenter’s pencil.
  9. On grid paper – 1-inch equals 1 foot – she transferred her remnant pattern. Inside each block on the grid paper, she wrote (a) its length and width and (b) number of remnant to fit there.
  10. She purchased many spools of heavy carpet thread through a carpet installation business.
  11. Starting at the far, lowest traffic corner of the floor, she replaced each numbered remnant on its matching numbered grid block. She made certain that the weave/grain of all pieces went in the same direction.
  12. On the backing of each piece, she drew its grid measurements, allowing a ¾-inch “seam” on each side.
  13. Using a carpet cutter, she spliced each remnant along the marked cutting lines.
  14. As she cut each piece, she replaced it to its numbered spot on the gridded floor.
  15. After all pieces had been cut and laid out, she double-checked for proper dimensions, color conformity, and weave direction. (See no. 11 above.)
  16. Over a period of six months, she hand-stitched the carpet pieces together. Note: A very tough job. Kathy said it was “hard on the fingers, wrists, elbows, knees, and back!”
  17. Word leaked out about the woman’s unique creative project: the hand-sewn patch quilt carpet. Area media took photos of the newly carpeted room, and published or aired stories on Kathryn U.
  18. Friends, neighbors and relatives appeared for the open house when Kathryn unveiled the beautiful hand-stitched, wall-to-wall carpet.

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Necessity may be the mother of invention, but a creative soul is the mother of true art.

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Thank you for taking a pause to visit “Painting with Bob.”

Copyright 2016, 2017. Robert D. Hajtovik. All rights reserved.

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Decorative Painting A-La-Theme

Mary Engelbreit Desk, Chair and Lamp Mary Engelbreit Dry Sink

 

 

 

A fun thing can be when the client is your own sister.

 

A challenging thing can be when the theme that she wants is Mary Engelbreit, named after the artist. (See below: “About graphic artist Mary Engelbreit.)

Each painting, greeting card,  book cover, collectible is a story-telling and message-sending masterpiece.

 

Each scene depicting the “events, ideas and values of family, friends and the artist.” Each graphic design capturing life in vivid color, “close-up” detail, and emotional honesty.

 

How do you re-create or capture a Mary Engelbreit-inspired design, or theme?

 

How do you plan, lay out, grid, and sketch in the actual design? On whatever piece the client – your sister – has selected, provided, requested, or dreamed about?

 

Pieces: Furniture, artist canvas, picture frame, mirror frame, cabinetry, lamp, wall, floor, or door.

Surfaces: Wood, fabric, metal, ceramic, glass, china, laminate, plastic, drywall, or cork.

 

Yes, sisters are fun to have! Their dreams can be fun to help bring to life. Their client needs can be fun, and challenging, to fulfill. Their request for a theme can be fun to capture, or recreate.

 

Their choice of a surface can be fun to finish, too.

 

Their specifications with all of those colors?  Well, that can all be fun, too.  Just make sure that your paintshop is equipped with the following:

  1. a supply of good-quality (eg. Liquitex) acrylic base paints – especially primary colors, white and black, also Gesso medium;
  2. a variety of precision brushes and tools – all in excellent condition;
  3. at least 2 dozen small, clean and empty containers – with screw lids;
  4. a sizeable, open and non-traffic work space;
  5. superb full-lighting;
  6. time for unbelievable detail work – at all phases/steps;
  7. excellent ventilation and air flow, and;
  8. a painter that can precisely mix and match any paint color, has a very steady hand, and excels at recreating repetitive patterns that meet the “up close” rule.

 

Did I mention a brother willing to take on a decorative project – for free?
Oh-oh! Sis just found the empty Oreo cookie package in her kitchen garbage.

 

Mary Engelbreit Themed Scenic

About graphic artist Mary Engelbreit: Established in 1986, the Mary Engelbriet Studios (MES) have grown to an international creator and licensor of nearly 6,500 products. Among the most popular: greeting cards, children’s books, gift books, fabric, ceramic figurines, home/interior design books, calendars, T-shirts, mugs. Her new Paperworks line of products – blank cards, boxed cards, coloring books, etc. – are all made in the U.S.A.

 

All represent her signature M.E. artwork. She starts with pen and ink drawings. She follows that with colored markers, then uses colored pencils to shade and highlight; also to preserve the markers.

 

Her renowned malapropism greeting card plays off the saying, “Life is just a bowl of cherries.” The card shows a girl looking at a chair piled high with bowls and has the legend, “Life is just a chair of bowlies.”

 

A native of St. Louis, Missouri, Engelbreit and her husband, Paul, still live and work there.

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Kudos to all siblings, especially the helpful and dream-delivering kind.

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Many thanks, D., for being my sib. And thanks, all, for visiting “Painting with Bob.”
Copyright 2016. Robert D. Hajtovik. All rights reserved.

 

 

Painting It: Hotel Teen Center & Computer Room

BASIC FEATURES and AMENITIES of TYPICAL TEEN CENTER/ROOM/AREA

 

  1. Carpeting or carpet tiles: Dense weave, darker solid colors or patterned, bright color accents.
  2. Walls: Painted and/or commercial wall vinyl; darker shades, bright color accents.
  3. Windows: Unobstructed view of outdoors; windows overlooking hallway; no windows.
  4. Entrance: Often open, and no doors. Any doors may be wood, or vinyl-coated.
  5. Computer area: Washable/durable surfaces: countertops, height-appropriate chairs/stools.
  6. Seating: Bean bag chairs. Upholstery: vinyl/fabric; heavy-duty, stain and water resistant.
  7. Other furniture: Café booth(s) with benches (bolted down); couch, arm chairs; work table.
  8. Lighting: Recessed lighting, fixtures for reading/close-up work; workstation lighting.

 

COLORS THAT TEENS WANT

 

Note: Bright anything tends to be first choice. With older teens, dark colors are popular, too.

 

  1. Main colors: Dark colors – eg. black, gray, forest green, purple – on the walls.
  2. Accent colors: Red, hot pink/fuscia, purple, lime, orange, bright blues,
  3. Ceiling color(s): Multiple colors – light-to-dark; bright colors. Not solid whites, or pastels.

 

“CREATE WITH” SPECIAL EFFECTS THAT TEENS LIKE

 

  1. Create with paint: Murals and graphics. Interactive and erasable mural wall, on which teen guests/patients/visitors can add-to – eg. drawings, illustrations, cartoons, caricatures, graphics, scenics. Multi-designed mural in black and shades of gray. Faux layer-on-layers; reflective looks; subtle images.
  2.  Create with wallcoverings: Textured with bright colors; cosmic, galactic, luminaries; graphics and geometrics in bright colors.
  3. Create with carpeting/carpet tiles: Multi-colored; solids, stripes, colorful patterns in carpet.

Fun/game/hot spots. F.Y.I: “Game Room Fun” blog, posted January 20, 2015.

  1. Create with wood: Faux design simulating wood; multi-colored painted or stained wood.
  2.  Create with wallboard/fiberboard: Multi-layered in puzzle pieces, various colors, one wall.
  3. Create with other materials: Cork block and vertical panel bulletin boards. TIP: Alternate with adjacent painted panels. Colorful fabrics on walls; bright colored trims, moldings.

IDEA: Create Amazon rain forest atmosphere. On one wall painted muted tropical green, clip/staple simulated or real bamboo stalks. Carpet entire/part of room in variegated green tiles. Create jungle “path.”

  1. Create with lighting/fixtures: Track lighting, using various colored bulbs; spotlights; globes.

 

COMBINING COLORS, PATTERNS, TEXTURES, GRAPHICS, ETC.

 

  1. Patterns: Overlap stencils with bright colors, 3-dimensional transparent designs.
  2. Textures: Multi-colors to form design on wall. TIP: Various shades and tones of one color.
  3. Graphics: Geometrics hand-painted, or done with wallcoverings (eg. remnant commercial weight vinyls). Texting acronyms, words, phrases painted in curved lines/arches. Symbols.
  4.  Scenics: Hand-painted animated scenes, wallcoverings of real-life nature scenes – eg. islands.
  5. Murals: Teen-involved paintings – eg. street scenes, dance club, optical illusions.
  6. Overlays: Wallcovering over freshly-painted surface – eg. Collages, facsimiles of photo-op frames. Adhesive-backed carpet tile shapes for walls, wide arches, columns, cabinetry headers.

 

 

VERY TECHY-FRIENDLY!

 

Features: No-glare surfaces, finishes, lighting, etc. Flexible-use spots. Space-y workstation areas. Movable, durable seating. Smooth material, sturdy, washable upholstery. Open-space feeling, forget doors.

 

CREATING CLUSTER FUN and HOT-SPOTS

 

  1. Games space: Create a system of modular spaces (non-painted) – laminate and solid wood – with interchangeable sections.
  2. Eating/snacking space: Informal; vinyl-covered bar stools, smooth flooring for easy cleaning.
  3. WI-FI/Computer station space: Opportunities here limited only by budget, really.
  4. Groupie/congregate space: Create communal space, where everyone can see each other.
  5. Dancing/Music space: Crate a dance floor, using a design such as geometric wood inlays.
  6. Reading/study/project space: Modular design, open space for circular tables.

 

 

Teens like lots of freedom! Including in spaces they use at the hotel or resort where they are staying overnight. Give them that space. Invite their creative souls. And, they’ll love your hotel, and your staff.
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Thanks, everyone, for keeping in touch – and for visiting “Painting with Bob.”

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Copyright 2015. Robert D. Hajtovik. All rights reserved.

PAINTING THINGS FOR SMOKEY THE BEARS

SmokeyBears
Since childhood, I’ve been collecting “Smokey the Bear” stuffed animals. The collection includes two first editions. One made in the late 1960s, the other in the early 1970s.

 

All except two of the forest ranger bears were manufactured by Knickerbocher in New York, New York.

 

Over the years, the “Smokeys” received treatment deserving of such “naturalists.” They had their own custom-designed furniture, crafted from oak and pine woods.

 

. Park bench – 20-inches high by 36-inches long by 8-inches deep.

Description: Painted forest green, semi-gloss latex, Mfgr,: Sherwin-Williams; “Smokey” belt buckle etching on front cross-brace of back, 50 percent grey matte acrylic, Mfgr.: Liquitex.

 

. Side chair – 18-inches high by 10-inches wide by 8-inches deep.

Description: Clear primer/sealer, low-gloss clear polyurethane finish, Mfgr.: Minwax. Carved poinsettia back panel, painted crimson red and tinted forest green acrylic, Mfgr.: Liquitex.

 

. Bunk bed – 21-inches long by 12-inches wide by 18-inches high.

Description: Mattresses, posts painted Bright white semi-gloss latex; Mfgr.: Sherwin-Williams. Curved headboards, painted light bark brown background, with the “Smokey” logo name painted custom-tinted blue-grey acrylic; Mfgr.: Liquitex.

 

Young neighbor children liked to play “gently” with a few of the “Smokeys,” while their mothers stopped by to discuss a problem with someone.

 

Most of the Smokey the Bears sit safely, in a display wall cabinet.

 

On Halloween, “Smokey No. 7”, a custom designed, handcrafted 36-inch high model, sits in a white captain’s chair at the front door. Holding a large aluminum bowl of trick-or-treat candy in his lap. Even the teenagers grin, when they see “Smokey,” and they help themselves to two or three snack-sized candy bars.

 

In December of 2014, six of my “Smokey the Bears” were donated to Goodwill Industries for a fundraiser. They were clear-wrap sealed in pairs, to generate higher prices.

 

A running search on e-Bay and Google+ for another original edition of “Smokey the Bear” is checked at least monthly. Like with any collectible, the “Smokeys” turn up some interesting people. And stories.

 

My most recently purchased “Smokey,” circa 1975, came from the Los Angeles area. A lady who was once in the film industry. I’m waiting for a “Smokey” to arrive from California. Given as a birthday gift to a gold record musician, the 1972 bear is being given as a birthday gift to me.

 

Per agreement with the seller, this “Smokey the Bear” will remain with the rest of the group here. And, the entire group will be donated to a Central Indiana community’s local historical museum. “When the time comes…”

 

Bears, it may be time to build a bigger park bench.

 

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“Only you can prevent forest fires.”     “Only you can prevent wildfires.”

                                                                                                                  …. “Smokey the Bear”

Note: Smoke the Bear is the trademark property of the National Park Service.

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Have a safe September, everyone. And, thanks for visiting “Painting with Bob.”

 

Copyright 2015. Robert D. Hajtovik. All rights reserved.

PAINTING IT: NIGHT SKIES OVER BED

Retired sign designer and painter Steve and his wife, Sara, were going legally blind. Their shared passion, since college, had been astronomy.

 

One of their prized telescopes was an ED 127MM Apochromatic refractor. A favorite for its astrophotography capabilities. Steve and Sara’s model had been equipped to capture, enlarge and edit what they were no longer able to see clearly, even with corrective lenses.

 

Trying to look at narrow framed close-ups was not the same as gazing at the panoramic span of the heavens. Especially at night. From their back porch.

 

So, two years ago May, the couple convinced me to paint the night skies onto their 18 by 24 foot bedroom ceiling. They knew that, at the time, my vision wasn’t much better than theirs. (I still had problems with focus, blurriness, redness, and burning caused by repeated exposure to toxic levels of mold, and concentrated chlorine bleach solution.)

 

The “Skies the Limit” Layout Decision

 

Steve and Sara thought about extending the “galaxy grid” down each wall, 8-10 inches. I questioned the idea. “Too dark…could cause sensations that the ceiling/roof/sky was falling in…”

 

To help them decide, I convinced them to allow their son and me to stretch dark king-sized flat bed sheets across the entire ceiling. For one night. By eight o’clock the next morning, at least half of the sheets had been taken down. Steve said, “The walls were shrinking in on us…”

 

Pre-Painting Step: Gridding in the Galaxy

 

As a template, I used the big enlargement of a photo taken by Sara for Steve’s 60th birthday. When both of their green-eyed sights were perfect: 20/20 vision.

 

Using her MacBook Pro and a projector, Sara transposed the image onto the ceiling. That helped me to “grid” and mark the location of stars, planets, etc.

 

The Painting Process

 

Note: Unless noted otherwise, I used Sherwin-Williams paint and finishing products.

 

1. A thinned-down coat of color no. SW 6565, Rarified Blue matte latex ceiling paint was rolled on, serving as a primer. Allowed natural drying time: 24 hours.

 

2. The ceiling was “feather-sanded” with no. 400 sandpaper. A thorough “rag-wipe” followed, using absorbent NEW cloths.

 

3. Next, I rolled on a base coat of Cosmos Blue semi-gloss latex paint, to which I’d added 3 drops of Iridescent Ivory Black acrylic. Liquitex artist paint. Allowed natural drying time: 3 hours.

 

4. Then, I damp “feather-sanded” the ceiling, working toward each galactical marking. Drying time: until the next morning.

Note: To preserve those galactical markings, I covered each with an uncut stencil, made from poster board. Each stencil was grid-numbered, and affixed in place with a small, finger-rolled strip of blue masking tape.

 

5. With the stencils back in place, I sprayed a thin coat of Indigo (midnight) Blue semi-gloss acrylic latex. Used sometimes for set/scenic painting. Drying time: 4 hours.

 

6. Using artists brushes, I detailed in all of the stars, planets, rings, etc.

A. Undercoat paint: Cadmium Yellow,* high-gloss mixed with Gesso.

B. Overcoat paint: Iridescent Titanium White,* semi-gloss.

C. Linings/indents: Yellow (deep) Gold matte.* Also used: Hansa Yellow Light.* Manufacturer: Liquitex heavy body acrylic paints. Note: Excellent for experimental techniques. Natural drying times: Under coat, overcoat – 3 hours each. Lining work: 18 hours.

* Note: This process took only two-and-a-half days, surprisingly. (My eyes watered and ached, though I used, at all times, either safety eye goggles and a breathing mask, or a full-face breathing apparatus.

 
7. Next, I rag-wiped the ceiling. Fabric: 12 by 12 inch squares, Natural muslin, used in quilting.

 

8. Stars Finish Detailing: Using artist brushes*, I dotted and dabbed Iridescent clear glitter into each star. Glitter mixed 4-to-1 parts with Hansa Yellow Light (tinted with Iridescent Titanium white low gloss. Mfgr: Liquitex acrylics. * Detail brushes used: No. 2 bright; Nos. 2 and 4 Filbert; No. 2 flat.

 

9. Feather finish: Using artist brushes,* I blended three colors of Liquitex heavy body acrylic paints from outer edges of stars, planets, etc. into surrounding skies. Colors used: Cobalt Blue Dark; Cobalt Blue Light; Ultramarine Blue. * Detail brushes: Universal angle 1-inch flat; 2-inch flat; 1-inch Universal flat freestyle.

 

10. Ceiling finish coat: Spray painted a fine coat of Clear semi-gloss latex Into the paint pot mixture, I’d added 5 drops of Iridescent Rich Silver.

 

Technique used: I sprayed with a pin nozzle. I used a subtle arc movement with my arm. And, I released the spray gun’s lever, for a few seconds, over each galactical element. I did not spray with any steady back-and-forth motion.

 

THE EFFECT:

Beyond imagination! Reflective, with sensation that either the stars and constellations, or the viewers, were moving or rotating slightly.

 

SARA and STEVE in 2015.

Sara is totally blind. Every evening before bed, she and Steve sit together, in their leather Lazy-Boy loungers, or in bed. Under their stars.

 

Hotel/Facility Painter/Decorator Footnote:

This ceiling treatment can make an awesome addition to any ceiling in a hotel. Examples: KidsSuite, “Honeymoon Suite,” club/entertainment stage, game room. That is, if the budget allows for the purchase of the variety of products and supplies needed. And the hours of detail work by a creative, detail-oriented staff painter can be justified.

 

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Friends’ favorite rooms deserve special treatment from friends.

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Thanks for visiting “Painting with Bob.” Copyright 2015. Robert Hajtovik. All rights reserved.

SHORT STROKES: CREATIVE SERVICES FOR CHILDREN

1. An inn in the southeast installed a “rock climbing” wall, to keep active 2-3 year olds occupied. Its features include:

A. Solid oak construction, dimensions: 4-feet high, 9 feet long, 3 inches thick.

B. “Wall” screwed into 2-inch by 4-inch wall joists, 8-inches apart, behind finished drywall.

C. Random rock pattern hand-painted on oak surface, then clear, vinyl-coated.

D. “Rock ledges,” 4-inches wide by 6-inches deep, formed from heavy, smooth rubber tires.

E. Numerous vinyl-coated gripper handles placed on either side of each “ledge.”

F. Grey foam pad, 10-feet long, 8-feet wide, 3-inches thick, stretches out at foot of wall.

 
A retired playground designer created the wall. At the request of the inn’s owners: his sons and daughters-in-law. The need for a safe, indoor “energy” outlet apparent. Between them, they had five children.

A sturdier “rock climbing wall, for older/larger children, ages 4-6, is under construction. Completion date: October 2015.

 

2. A rescued 110-room Days-Inn features a do-it-yourself kitchen and snack bar, for children 5 to 10 years old. It features:

A. Child/young junior sized appliances – all with clear, see-through doors, globes, surfaces.

     . Refrigerator    . Smoothie/Blender    . 2-Burner, built-in cooktop

     . Microwave      . 4-Slice toaster, battery-operated

     . Portable mixer, battery-operated

     . Utensils: coated, non-sharp, non-serrated.

B. All food products are fresh, frozen or baked.

C. All foods are gluten-free, no-sugar/no-salt added.

D. Cost: Free – all food products, cooking privileges, and “classes.”

E. Hours: 9-10:30 am, 12-1:30 pm, 4-5:30 pm, 6 days a week.

F. Cooking and baking “classes” – supervised assistance – 5 days a week.

G. Kitchen is supervised by at least two hotel kitchen workers, specially trained for the job.

H. “Rain days” – Innkeeper’s version of his “snow days” in Michigan when schools were closed.

 

3. A third-generation fishing cottage business, on Lake Michigan’s western shore, has its own mini-ice fishing “pond,” for guests 4-8 years old.

A. A 70-feet diameter shallow fishing pond is frozen solid, November to February.

B. Eight, 2-person fishing “huts” are pulled onto the ice.

C. Construction: One-half inch plywood sides, floor, roof, joist frame; shingled roof, insulated walls; 2 eye-level windows/cased; wood doors.

D. Paint/Exteriors: Walls: Color- Bark brown, satin finish; Doors: Color – Bright red, high gloss finish. Both products: Sherwin-Williams Heavy-Duty latex.

E. Interiors: Built-in double seat; fire-proof portable heater/battery; clear plexi-6-inch high encasement around fishing “hole” in floor.

F. Cost: Free to child guests.

G. Fishing contest: Alternate Saturday afternoons, November – February. Free: Guests. Open to local children, 4-8 ($2.00 entry).

 

A Central Florida M.D. told me that he used to take his family to the Lake Michigan site. “We were young, and on a tight budget. Natives of the Sheboygan area. What you’d call ‘millennials with a marriage license, and kids.’”

 

He oriented me to the following 21st Century hospitality facts about millennials:

 

1. Millennial guests may have children, too.

2. Millennial guests expect the hotels where they stay to accommodate their children.

3. Millennial guests expect the hotels to provide their children with qualitative, safe, and age-appropriate full services. Commensurate with those offered to the millennials themselves.

4. Millennial guests’ budgets come in all sizes, and credit cards with all levels of buying power.

 
A hotel/facility painter’s millennial tips:

 

1. Treat millennial guests well, like guests in any age group deserve to be treated.

2. Treat the children of millennials special. Like guests in any adult age group want their children/ grandchildren/ great-grandchildren to be treated. Whatever the children’s ages.

3. Remember, the millennial guests’ children are away from home. In a different environment.

4. Say “Hi” to millennial guests’ children. Smile naturally. Look them in the eye.

5. Ask them what they like about your hotel, and their stay there. Ask nothing personal.

6. Encourage them, from a distance, to watch you paint. Ask, “Have you ever painted anything?”

7. Chat briefly with them, while you work. Tell them what you are doing. Point out to them the WET PAINT sign you’ve posted nearby. Explain why wet paint should never be touched.

8. Encourage them to ask you a few questions. Always answer them, briefly and respectfully.

9. After a reasonable time, encourage them to move on. To check back in with parents or family.

10. Say goodbye. “Thanks for stopping.” “Have a great vacation.” “Have a good trip home.”

 

Recently, I stopped to watch a hotel painter. He was applying a bright cranberry exterior enamel to a park bench in a children’s outdoor play area. Several children and a young family watched him work.

 

Everyone else moved on eventually. I asked the painter if he enjoyed his “little audiences.” He grinned. “They make my days. Make it all worthwhile.”

 

Yeah. “Go ahead and make my day.”  Clint Eastwood.

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Thanks for visiting “Painting with Bob.” Copyright 2015. Robert Hajtovik. All rights reserved.

Painting It: “627” Bathroom

Some persons are so creative, that it flows into every area of their lives. Even to the most unchangeable things. Where nothing could be done to improve it. Or, so it may seem to you, or I.

 

In one quiet week-end, one of these creatives turned what was once a small, service station bathroom into a comedic conversation piece. And, a great place to hide!

 

Room: Utility bathroom.

Overall dimensions: 8 ft. length by 6 ft. wide by 8 ft. height.

Features: Solid knotty pine paneled wall (30-inches length); 26-inch sink vanity cubicle, built-in corner shower stall, lavatory cubicle, knotty pine paneling built-in wall.

Basic construction: Concrete block walls, and shower stall walls, poured concrete floor, drywall ceiling.

Post-construction upgrade: Pink and White, alternate set, 3-inch tiles glazed ceramic over: vanity wall, shower stall walls (inside/outside) and entry, also room’s floor; pink and white, alternate set, frosted ceramic mini-tiles on shower stall floor. Knotty pine paneled wall (8-ft length): built-in lounge seat (36-inches), 2-30 inch one-half closets, overhead blanket cupboard.

 

PREP WORK

 

1. Removed all door knobs and movable fixtures.

2. Gently washed all knotty pine paneled areas, baseboard, built-in mirror frame; also entry door.

3. Once dried, sanded above surfaces with No. 220 sandpaper.

4. Thoroughly dusted all surfaces with clean, soft cloths.

 

SURFACE APPLICATIONS

 

5. Brushed and rolled thin coat of red semi-gloss interior enamel (Gliddens) on all knotty pine surfaces.

6. Once dried, lightly sanded wall surfaces and door. Re-dusted all areas with clean, soft cloths.

7. Glued over twenty, 6-inch by 8-inch black and white newsprints of British ZIGGY cartoons on paneled walls and door interior.

8. Areas were left to dry.

9. Carefully brushed thin coat of clear gloss varnish, slightly tinted with same red paint coloring used in thin first coat application.

 

SOME POPULAR, AFFORDABLE DECORATING OPTIONS FOR AN OLD BATHROOM

 

1. Stenciling – Graphic shapes, large letters, silhouettes, on the ugliest wall.

TIP: First, lightly sand with No. 220 sandpaper. Then, brush on a fresh coat of paint. Examples: white, off-white, or white ivory interior latex. (Or acrylic latex).

2. Sponge random pattern onto that same painted wall and baseboard.

TIP: Add 1-2 drops of acrylic paint – a favorite color – to one-half gallon of the white base paint.

3. Do the reverse: First paint the entire wall, or half wall, with the tinted paint.

TIP: Then, mark one horizontal line one-half distance between floor and ceiling. Mark a second horizontal line 3-4 inches below that line. Use BLUE masking tape to tape along each line, with one edge of tape on line, other outside of stripe area.

4. Create your own vertical half-wall/board effect.

TO-DO TIP: Use yardstick, or metal tape measure to mark space, horizontally, into 4-to-6 inch vertical “wood” planks.

 

The Homeowner’s True Story…

 

January, 1972— Thirty-five stranded semi-truck drivers enjoyed the cozy and clean accommodations of that colorful bathroom. For nearly three days, they huddled together inside the concrete block house under major reconstruction and expansion.

 

The truckers drank hot, black coffee and ate thinned down, home-made chili or chicken-noodle soup from small Styrofoam cups. They made quick, long-distance calls home, to let their families know they were okay. They leaned against bare wall joists, and dozed off. Totally exhausted, and feeling unsettled.

 

Every hour or so, the truckers bundled back up and braved the miserable weather to check on their diesel-powered rigs. Kept running –in place on U. S. Highway 30 – to prevent the engines from freezing up.

 

Northwest Indiana was a living nightmare for those, and thousands of other, long-haul truckers. The massive ice storm and subzero temperatures had paralyzed the area. Closing all major north and south traffic: I-65, seven miles to the west, and I-149 to the east. Nothing was moving!

 

For over fifteen years after their unplanned visit, semi-drivers whizzed and roared by on U. S. 30. Saying “HI” with their loud TOOT! TOOT! TOOT! They filled the property’s mailbox with cards and notes. They told their own extended stories of the adventure in 1972. Ones they shared with their families and friends.

 

More than one-half of the truckers joked about the little red “cartoon” bathroom. They recalled their favorite cartoons. And, they told the homeowners: “Keep that bathroom just the way it is…Don’t touch it.”

 

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Family friendships are the best! Especially when made, or rekindled, unexpectedly – and/or when especially needed.

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Thanks, everyone, for visiting “Painting with Bob.”

Copyright 2015. Robert D. Hajtovik. All rights reserved.

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