Tuesday, 27 May 2014

in the boiler room !

I recently took two weeks off work, because a) I need to use up my holiday time and b) an old customer was hassling me to do some work for him.

I have worked in this house on and off for about 10 years, for the previous owners and the current owner. I have hand-painted every single room except the laundry.

He initially asked me to come and fix one of the guest rooms because he had had some water damage from a leaky roof.

 The white paint is the stain block I used before re-painting the cream and then the green stripes.

He also asked if I could do anything with his laundry room. There were lots of holes, and dirty and unpainted walls where a new boiler had been installed.

There are also lots and lots of cable's and pipes.

The only thing I could suggest was to turn his laundry room into a boiler room and add even more pipes !

So instead of spending two weeks at home, decorating my own house, I spent 6 1/2 days in this boiler room.
As soon as it started to look ok, I stopped berating myself for taking on the work, and started enjoying it.

Mostly I was left on my own, given a key, and told to help myself to tea and coffee: so I just turned the radio up and got on with it.

I painted the back two walls in grey, stippled with silver, because there was already enough going on, on these walls and I knew everything would look good against a darker colour.

On the other walls I painted 'metal' panels because I couldn't cut round all the pipes. One morning the shelf had gone (a new galvanised one has been bought) and then the next day I was asked to remove the tiles. It definitely looks better without them.

I added a copper pipe, tap and gage, and rivets to make the panel look realistic.
I 'signed' my work (in the gage) with my initials and year of birth - though the client doesn't know.
I also added another panel on the wall by the door, with an air vent, and a pipe that runs around the back door and behind the washing machine.

I would have been happy to paint fake copper pipes everywhere, but it would have taken so long and turned the laundry room into the most expensive room in the house.
Oh boy, it was hot in the boiler room, I had to open this valve to let off some steam !!!!!
My client was very happy as he says he's always in here, washing clothes for himself and his daughter, and his OCD prefers the more finished space.


The white sockets and switches have already been changed for grey metal ones and I also painted a 'danger - authorised personnel only' sign, that I neglected to photograph.
Now every room in the house has a Fiona paint effect, though he's thinking of updating the hall.
Er, 'not this year' I told him, coz I'd like to keep my days off for myself.
The job was fun though and the extra money really helps !

Tuesday, 20 May 2014


I bought a few more cardboard letters for my bathroom, to fill the gap to the left of the cabinet. I've always had a feeling it would give the illusion of making the cabinet feel wider.

I tried the white B.A.T.H.E letters here, but felt it was a shame that you only got to see them when walking out of the bathroom (or lying in the bath with your head at an uncomfortable angle). Anyway, they work well by the window, but I still had a gap by the cabinet that needed filling.
So, I thought....why not, just go buy some more. I chose Le Bain and gilded them because of the little bit of old gold on the cabinet handle. Or maybe just because I can't resist a bit of gold.

I mentioned in the last post that I wanted to tie all the colours in the room together, albeit in a very subtle way, so I painted the sides of the letters in a few carefully chosen colours.
I found a perfect matchpot of yellow to go with my yellow bath, and painted the E and the N.
I bought a red match pot for the B, because of the paint and fabric on the cabinet.
I used AS Emile on the L, because of the pinks and lavenders in the room.
I also chose a blue and a turquoise for the A and I.

I just painted the letters in a charcoal, then gilded the fronts and put a glaze on the gold to dull them slightly and then painted the sides and distressed a little.

My obsession with letters didn't diminish, I bought two more, but not for the bathroom.
I finally got out of the bathroom.

I'm now working on something I've wanted to do for about 10 years, it's very exciting.

I've also been working on all of these. More red chairs, some updating at home and some work in a boiler room !

I just don't blog very much, so I want to say thank you very much if you've stopped by for a little look.