Spray Paint, Fireplace Repairs and Ikea Cubbies

One day earlier this year, when I was wasting time pinning things on Pinterest rather than actually accomplishing anything, I came across a suggestion to have the paint store make up spray paint to match your wall colour.   I hate cold air returns.   If you leave them the original colour they stick out because they are a different colour than the walls.  If you try to paint them with a brush, the paint job is always drippy and still seems to end up being a different colour from the walls.  No matter what we’ve done in the past they have always ended up being a eyesore.

When we purchased paint this time, I asked if they could make up spray paint to match our wall colour.  The clerk suggested the Preval Spray System.  It comes with a spray nozzle, propellant and reservoir.  You add your paint and some water to thin it, put it all together and spray.  I was thrilled with the results.

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When we painted Alun’s room in February 2013, we never even put the cold air return back.  We started painting it, but it looked so bad we gave up.  He’s just had an ugly hole in his wall for almost two years.  A couple coats of primer covered the mess.  Fortunately, we had a couple ounces of paint left in a jar.  Two coats of tinted paint and it looked great.  The spray is quite thin and dries very quickly.

After installing it, I even used the sprayer to cover the heads of the screws.

Here’s the one I did for my new sewing room.  I highly recommend this product.  It’s quite cheap as well as being useful – just $10.  You can buy extra propellant.  I just wish you could buy extra bottles so I could store the paint in them.  There is a contractors’ pack on their website which has extra bottles and a trigger, which I would buy if I hadn’t already bought two of the individual sprayers and an extra propellent.

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Does this happen to you?  We are very careful about prepping our walls before painting.  We clean, sand and repair, but we always seem to find a nail pop when we are done painting.  Do you see the one in the picture above between the electrical outlet and the cold air return?  I didn’t notice it until I was looking at the picture which I took to show how nicely the cold air return matches the wall.  I wonder if painting actually causes the nails to pop?

A few years ago, when we opened the damper on our fireplace, it fell apart.  We got a flashlight, found the screw that holds the heavy cast iron damper to the frame and reattached it.  It held, but was quite wobbly.  A year later it fell apart again and we could not get it back together.  This morning we had a chimney sweep come to the house to inspect and clean the chimney (something we have never done even though we’ve been here 15 years now) and to repair the damper.  He told us he would charge $125 which seemed quite reasonable.  Well, as so often happens when the cost of something seems reasonable, more is required than anticipated.  The damper cannot be repaired.  It is held in by one screw which goes into a frame which is cemented in when the chimney is built.  The frame is stripped so the screw won’t hold.  Who thinks one screw holding up a heavy cast iron damper is a good idea?

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Currently, the damper is installed at the top of the chimney with a stainless steel chain attached to a control in the firebox.  That is what we need.  The animal proof one (which we need since we have had many animal incursions into our attic which we have animal proofed at significant expense) is $750.  He will have to order it and come back next week to install it.  Sigh.

When we moved into this house 15 years ago, we decided to dedicate a room to be a playroom.  I wanted to try to keep some order so we bought three Ikea Bonde cubby units to store the toys.  Like most Ikea units they have a cardboard back which is nailed on with finishing nails and which gets pushed off when things are pushed against it.

I have emptied those units of toys and will use them in my new sewing room (the old playroom) for my quilting and photography storage.  We decided to try to rehabilitate the backs by removing them, adding copious amounts of glue and many more nails than is called for in the instructions.  Here they are waiting for the glue to cure.  We will set them up and start filling them later today.

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About Lisa Stokes

I am a stay-at-home mother of four whose hobbies include photography, quilting and cycling. I have recently started to advocate for better cycling infrastructure in my community. I am the photographer at the Brampton Quilters' Guild.
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