When my husband suggested moving into the motel with our baby I was horrified. NO WAY, I said, unless you get rid of that ugly green carpet that has been there since the 70’s – there is no way my daughter is crawling on that. He made a few other changes too – he painted the living room and Audrey’s room. He really didn’t want to spend too much money on it though because we rent this place on a periodic lease, so any money we invest on the building is pretty much throwing it away since we don’t have anything to sell at the end of it.
About 40 years ago our kitchen used to prepare the meals for a Chinese restaurant. It was a pretty happening place back then, and apparently our tiny little motel was a pretty flash joint – we were told so by an elderly man who informed my husband that he had “consummated his marriage” at our motel. Wow. I don’t usually use this abbreviation, but I think it fits the occasion: TMI. We haven’t served meals here in ages – there’s a pretty good pub on the corner of the street that we send guests to for meals. Anyways, back to the kitchen: wood paneling on the walls + too many greasy dinners + time = a kitchen you don’t want to spend any time in at all. I waited until my husband was away for a few weeks, then set out to paint the ugly thing myself. Have a look at the photos for yourself and you’ll agree that something needed to be done!
The solution needed to be budget friendly (i.e. no major renos) so all I did was paint. You can see in the last photo I had started preparing already. I took the cupboard doors off and painted them separately. With laminate you are supposed to sand it all down, add a primer, then paint. The laminate wasn’t shiny anymore because it was so old, so I didn’t bother sanding it, but I did give it a super good wash (twice) with sugar soap. I used a Bin primer on the walls and trim because it covers well regardless of whether you’re covering oil based or latex paint, but you absolutely must use a painting respirator when applying this particular primer! I then used a Wattyl interior paint for the walls and Aquatrim for the architraves.
The walls just soaked up the primer really quickly and the first section I did needed 3 coats of paint to cover it, so on the next part I did 2 coats of primer and 2 coats of paint. I replaced the dirty old curtains with roller blinds, and added a new key holder, but other than that it was really just a couple of coats of paint. It cost just about $300 in total. But it made a huge difference. My husband was pretty surprised when he got home. His dad, who is a builder, also stopped by and they were so pleased that they didn’t even pick out my faults. Who knew a coat of paint could make such a huge difference!?