Thursday, August 18, 2011

Adventures in spray paint part 1

I named this blog "attempted homemaking" because I'm learning to be a homemaker as I go, and learning means trying new things that don't always go the way I've planned.  When we moved in to this apartment, my husbands former boss gave us these lamps (there are no overhead lights in the bedrooms here)
They both came with the pleated lamps shades but we have a toddler who likes to throw toys so we got a new one (we keep the nicer one in our bedroom, in case he's destructive again).
Nice lamps right?  They're great, but I'm really not big on the brass look.  I've read several articles about spray painting lamps so I got a can of spray paint, cleaned and dusted the lamps, "sanded" them with some fine steel wool, and then put an old sheet up on our balcony and spray painted them.
I used plasic bags and tape to protect the plug prongs and the light bulb part.
This is how they came out:
From a distance it almost looks like I meant to let some of the shiny brass shine through, but I didn't.  It was a matte paint that I was intending to coat them completely with.  I thought that they don't looks to bad and I could leave them like that, even though my five year old told me that they look disgusting (self esteem boost for you right there).  But I noticed they were really uneven as I turned them and there was a thick hair (looked like my husband's) on one of them which came off and left a lovely mark.  Plus the matte paint comes off really easily (even though it says it's for metal).  So I will be redoing them.  Thing is, it might be a while because the spray paint is supposed to be used between 65 and 90 degrees.  If you're following the weather channel, you know that here in Texas, temperatures below 90 degrees are rare!  The only times it's below 90 in after midnight and before 8:30 a.m..  Not wanting to do this in the dark, that leaves about a 2 hour winder (about 6:30 to about 8:30 most days) when I have light and it's less than 90 degrees.   I have little kids who like to get up in that time frame and they think they should have breakfast in the morning (go figure), plus I need to go to the store to get some more spray paint.  So I don't know when I'll finish.  For now they're going back in the bedrooms because we'll need them tonight.

Things I've learned:
           Only do one at a time, even though it's a small project, I couldn't put the layers I wanted on them because I ran out
          Use glossy paint.  It is more durable (won't rub off as easily) and it will look very nice with those lamps
          Wear a mask.  Even though I was outside and the wind was blowing away, and I had my husbands old work shirt over my mouth, I was still sucking in nasty fumes.  Or I could get a low VOC paint (that might be a little better for the environment anyway)
         Use more steel wool, so the paint sticks better.
         Clean and dust long before, so I'm not rushed.

Whenever I do this again, I will post about my endevors.

To be continued.............eventually.........

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