Before and After: "How did you persuade your husband to let you paint your bedroom pink?"

by Stephanie Gilmartin


The answer to that is - it wasn't really that difficult. When we first moved into our tenement flat, it was the flat that taste forgot. The kitchen had a ghastly purple colour (we later found the tin - Prom Night purple - YUCK), the spare room was orange and the bathroom was lime green. Combined with the brown bedroom, it was, all in all, pretty gross. Luckily paint is easy to change and also luckily my husband is really indulgent. SO, I told him I was painting our bedroom in Farrow and Ball's Nancy's Blushes and he didn't blink. What a guy. 

It probably helped that before it was a pretty gross moss green with a kind of light-emerald blind (were the previous owners colourblind? Maybe.)

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We also painted all the furniture in Annie Sloan's Graphite shade, and waxed it with black wax. You might think the dark furniture would make the room look much smaller, but it was so massive that it wasn't a huge problem. Top tips for chalk paint - you don't need to sand before you put it on (which is obviously amazing) but it's easier to put it on stuff like the Ikea Hemnes unit with a roller. You probably need at least three coats to make it look decent. It's pretty good for making sure everything matches (we whacked it on the bed, bedside tables and chest of drawers as well as the lamp) and I think the patina of the painted finish is nicer than the flat black Ikea Hemnes finish. I gold-leafed the handles and was quite pleased with the end result. Part of the reason for painting in the first place was  that the movers dropped one of the drawers and cracked the front. Now, if you know Ikea as well as I, you'll know they give you spare parts if you ask. I got a spare front but because my unit was ten years old (apparently I'm pretty good at looking after my Ikea stuff), the new front didn't quite fit. Since chalk paint is essentially water-based paint mixed with plaster, it filled in the crack rather nicely and afterwards you'd never know the difference. 

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Honestly, I wouldn't chalk-paint a bed a dark colour again - the wax still marked the sheets QUITE a long time after it should have hardened. 

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II'm pretty sure the pink was a dividing factor when people viewed our flat to buy, and one man told me he'd definitely get rid of it, but I've made my peace with it. It brought a lot of warmth and happiness to a room that was pretty drab before and I'm not gonna lie, I'd do it again in a second.