35 Weeks: Nesting Projects

July 30, 2012

Up until now, I hadn’t had much of an urge to clean my baseboards. It was all about decorating and making sure all of our little projects were complete. Then 35 weeks kicked in and I found myself….cleaning baseboards!! Craziness that one day I just looked down, saw dirt and was living a stereotype!

As you saw in the baby central post, earlier I was working on the basement. I wanted to create a cozy space to enjoy with the baby, and the black shelves we had down there felt outdated and old. I don’t know why I bought so much black furniture in 2005!?


So step one was to buy a bunch of spray paint at Lowes. Luckily spray paint is SUPER CHEAP! $3.98 for a bottle of Valspar – and it comes in so many awesome modern colors!

I learned when I painted the nursery fan and then the yellow box in our house the following tips: 1) wear gloves 2) wear a mask 3) sanding wasn’t necessary for nicely polished furniture 4) use a drop cloth that is not plastic that blows in breezes (learned in part II of this project) and 5) wait for a cool day – do not attempt at noon on a 100* one!


Step one was primer! The shelves took 2 coats. I loved it so much more already!



I didn’t bother with the undersides – mostly because I am lazy and ran out of paint! Only crawling babies will see it anyways : )


I also neglected the back – the wall won’t care. [Note the terrible drop cloth idea – I ended up using an old curtain later on that worked so much better with summer breezes!]


After a few hours of drying, I sprayed on the beautiful teal color!


All was well until I started in with can #2 to finish and start on a second coat. Suddenly everything was splotchy green and dark – nothing like the first coat!!


Same color, same day purchased, same user, same technique = different result


I think I just got a bad can because not only was the color different (like it hadn’t mixed well?) but the spray was so splotchy and uneven. The shelf looked tie-dyed!


So, so sad. I really didn’t want to go back and buy more paint! I ended up using the “new color” to turn the whole shelf greenish and let it sit on the porch for a few days to mull over what to do.


I actually started to like the color alright, but the splotches were still bothersome.


Final decision: repaint:


And yay yay yay – the final coat went on perfectly!



The shelf feels brand new and now resides in the basement – covered in bright, cheerful colored baskets!


I had one more spray paint nesting project to note – a rocking chair that Karen had given us needed a modern color as well:


And I turned it avocado green!!


This was so much easier to paint than the shelves – and I love the fresh color!


It matches our other porch furniture perfectly. And is cleaned up for indoor use if we need it for baby rocking.


Spray paint for the win!


[SO glad to be finished with painting projects though – they were not the most fun!]

PREVIOUS 35 week posts



4 weeks

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34 weeks

1 Averie @ Averie Cooks July 30, 2012 at 8:55 am

glad it all worked out in the end but sounds like quite! the project!

2 Anne July 30, 2012 at 9:04 am

Spray painting projects make me super happy! Although, last time I laid newspaper down in the garage, but it still spread to the garage floor. That didn’t make hubby so happy…

3 Leah July 30, 2012 at 9:07 am

Was the primer a spray paint also? I have a shelf I wanted to spray, but I’ve been lazy in figuring out what I need to do. It is unfinished pine wood, so I think I have to sand it. Ugh. But I am so sick of the light wood look!

4 KERF July 30, 2012 at 9:15 am


5 Anna @ On Anna's Plate July 30, 2012 at 9:10 am

Cute– love that teal color!

6 Julie H. of Spinach and Sprinkles July 30, 2012 at 9:41 am

I have been painting all sorts of items— except I’m the silly goose that has been hand painting them- I need to get on the spray paint bandwagon! Your projects are PERFECT! 🙂

7 Katie @ Talk Less, Say More July 30, 2012 at 9:57 am

Those both turned out awesome! I love making old pieces feel like brand new pieces with just the cost of a can (or two) of paint! 🙂

8 Angel7 July 30, 2012 at 10:04 am

I have never attempted painting projects. I am too much of a perfectionist that if there were any problems, I would probably have my husband finish it.

Spray paint seems so easy, though, compared to painting. However, sometimes there can be glitches.


9 Emma July 30, 2012 at 10:06 am

I can’t get enough of that gorgeous blue (shelf) color!!

10 Diana @ frontyardfoodie July 30, 2012 at 10:14 am

You are inspiring me like crazy!!!! My son is two months old already and I’m definitely still nesty….it lingers and I love it. haha

11 Sarah July 30, 2012 at 10:58 am

Pretty! Would you mind sharing what brand and colors you used?

12 KERF July 30, 2012 at 2:07 pm

The paints were Valspar from Lowes – in the spray paint section. I don’t think the colors had names or anything, but they only have one teal blue and one avocado green, so they will be easy to spot. They have lots of awesome colors!

13 Sarah July 30, 2012 at 2:08 pm


14 Andrea July 30, 2012 at 11:09 am

Awesome job! I spent the entire weekend painting various parts of my house…so I know how much work it is! My arm hurts from holding the brush.

15 Simply Life July 30, 2012 at 11:55 am

You’re inspiring me to try changing the color from some old pieces of furniture I’m not too crazy about the colors of – but love how inexpensive/purposeful they are!

16 Andrea @ The Skinny Chronicles July 30, 2012 at 12:17 pm

I am loving the color choices. Quite lovely. Nothing makes me more satisfied than breathing new life into old stuff. One less thing in the land fill!

17 Amanda Perry @ Sistas of Strength July 30, 2012 at 12:25 pm

I love these. I need to do more projects like this!!

18 Chrissy July 30, 2012 at 2:04 pm

Nice color! I am surprised you didn’t sand. Usually smooth surfaces require sanding to help the paint to adhere better for long term durability. I have lots of black furniture from the 90’s too. Seemed like a good idea at the time!

19 KERF July 30, 2012 at 2:06 pm

I actually sanded the first time I did a spray paint project (the floral box) and didn’t notice a lick of a difference, so I didn’t bother this time.

20 Jessica July 30, 2012 at 4:51 pm

The reason why you want to sand is that if you don’t, over time the paint can peel off easily – which won’t be good if you have the bookshelf around your little boy, especially when he gets to the age when he’ll want to put everything in his mouth! It may not be apparent right away, but skipping that important step may mean peeling paint down the line.

21 Katie July 30, 2012 at 2:31 pm

I know you were wearing a little mask, but weren’t you concerned about the fumes? Spray paint is not low VOC, and to do as as many coats as you did must have taken some time… I would not have exposed my baby to all that, personally.

22 KERF July 30, 2012 at 2:33 pm

My yard was very well ventilated too – I made sure not to stand in the wind’s path and nearly everything blew away – the mask was probably not even needed.

23 Hope July 30, 2012 at 3:04 pm

This is really where you need to pull the “I’m pregnant” card and have someone else spray paint for you. Doing this many spray paint projects (or really any at all) cannot be good for you and the baby.

24 KERF July 30, 2012 at 3:07 pm

As I said about, there were really no fumes involved. I was outside, on a breezy day, with a mask.

25 Hope July 30, 2012 at 3:11 pm

C’mon, Kath! Spray paint is toxic. Read the MSDS available on the manufacturers website. It doesn’t matter if you are outside, it’s not a great idea.

I’m just surprised that someone so informed on pregnancy, someone who researches so much would use spray paint repeatedly while pregnant.

26 KERF July 30, 2012 at 3:14 pm

I wasn’t eating it!!

27 KERF July 30, 2012 at 3:15 pm

Plus it was two times – not my daily job. I would be worried if it was a daily job

28 Jenna July 30, 2012 at 3:19 pm

So you’re willing to use paint with toxic fumes for five coats, but not everyday? No risk is absolutely better than low risk — Matt can do the painting for you!

29 KERF July 30, 2012 at 3:23 pm

um, right!?

30 Jenna July 30, 2012 at 3:45 pm

I am really baffled by your response on this on whole topic. You seem so focused on doing what’s best for your baby, which is why I (and a lot of other readers, I’m sure) cannot understand why you would use spray paint while you’re pregnant.

31 KERF July 30, 2012 at 3:49 pm

Lets stop the mommy war judgment please

32 Hope July 30, 2012 at 3:28 pm

You’ve done several spray paint projects over the course of your pregnancy.

All I’m saying is that it’s easy enough to avoid exposing yourself and the baby to the harsh chemicals, so why risk it?

I guess we can agree to disagree.

33 ashlynn July 30, 2012 at 4:28 pm

I play it safe with paint and chemical exposure when it comes to pregnancy. In other words, I don’t do it. Your doctor’s advice is best. But, I found this little bit of info on the web. http://www.americanpregnancy.org/pregnancyhealth/paintexposure.html

34 KERF July 30, 2012 at 4:37 pm

That article actually makes me feel just fine – I followed their safety recommendations.

35 Amy July 30, 2012 at 4:29 pm

It does seem kind of weird that you are worried about a few non-organic peaches but will hang out in a cloud of spray paint for days- I’m a scientist which is a field you’ve expressed interest in countless times, you must realize that you can’t adequately judge how many potentially dangerous substances you are breathing in just by the way you felt the breeze blowing. Although no one can say exactly how much risk you put yourself and your baby at, they’re just saying that zero risk is best, I think we can all agree on that.

36 KERF July 30, 2012 at 4:36 pm

I ingest peaches/fruit every day. This project took me maybe an hour or two total? I agree with you that if you said “is it better to spray paint or not spray paint” the answer would be better not to, but what’s done is done. I’ve googled spray painting and several people were freaking out from paint exposure and said their doctors’ responses were that a little is not going to do any harm. The concern is with long-term exposure or direct inhalation.

37 Lolly July 30, 2012 at 3:59 pm

Both came out great! I am more concerned that you remember to tether that tippy tall bookcase to the wall when your little man starts pulling himself up on furniture.

38 Danielle July 30, 2012 at 4:13 pm

The colors are beautiful! I can’t wait to have my own backyard to do such projects. We’re currently in an area of town houses with community yards. I’m not even allowed to shake out a dusty rug! Anyways, I love blues and greens. We also bought a lot of black items in 2005!

39 Courtney July 30, 2012 at 5:17 pm

Kath is kind enough to share her daily life with us so we should be kind enough to respect her choices and not breathe down her back at every little thing she does!

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