Thursday, November 28, 2013

Painted Birch Tree Wall

Hello all!

This project was one I completed about 3 weeks ago, the day we moved into our house on base. I just kept forgetting to upload the photos!
Since moving to Washington State, I have fallen in love with all things woodsy. Its very picturesque here, especially this time of the year. We even have some deer that live on base - they are completely tame and will get ridiculously close to our house to graze.

Just kidding, thats Ranger. Here are the deer.

Terrible picture quality, I know, but there's the momma deer. The baby went across the street to graze where there are no light posts.
Anyhow, our bathroom has A LOT of wood. There is the door, the baseboards, the cabinet and a built in. And of course, they don't all match. I can't paint them because we are renting. So my next best choice was to go with a woodsy theme for the bath, and add a bit more wood to make the mismatchy-ness look purposeful.

That tiny baby toilet is gone as well. Thank GOODNESS!  I am not one to talk bathroom stuff, but lets just say the plunger was used around 3x a day.... so miserable.

Lovely metal towel holder. I long for the day I have my own bathroom and can choose my own finishes on everything. 

I got the idea to paint a birch tree mural on the wall from Young People in Love.
They did their entire basement! I only had an itty bitty wall to do, so I felt I was up to the task. I give them full creative credit, including the sweet heart with our initials. My technique was a bit reversed from theirs - I wanted my trees to be white against a gray background. So I got my frog tape handy and taped somewhat straight lines from baseboards to ceiling. I also taped off the corners, baseboards, towel bar, vent, and ceiling so there would be no over painting. There still was, but I'm not a perfectionist so I can live with it. My #1 tip is to make sure you push down one the frog tape and even go over it with a wet paper towel on the edges to seal them.

Then came the hard part. I ripped off about 3 inch pieces of frog tape and added them where I wanted branches, making sure they touched the the tree. Then with a brand new (so very sharp) x-acto knife, I cut in the shape of branches. This was the most difficult part, as 1) my knife was a bit too sharp and I cut into the wall paint at times (...oops) and 2) I am not good at freestyle drawing, so I had to pull up photos of branches online for some help. Once each branch was cut, I peeled off the excess frog tape, while making sure to push down on the branch pieces edges. I also went down each tree trunk and cut notches out (that part was easy since they were all triangles). 

When I stood back and looked, a lot of by trees were not perfectly straight up and down, so I didn't feel the need to cut them vertically to make them look imperfect - they already were! 

Now it was time to paint! I chose Benjamin Moores Edgecomb Gray in Semi-Gloss. I bought a pint and did not come close to using it all - that goes to show how tiny our bathroom is. I used a paint roller and went in random directions. I had to use a paint bring between the wall and the towel holder - so there are some brush strokes that are visible there. Like I said - not a perfectionist - but if you are you should unscrew the towel holder from the wall.



Not the best photos, I know, I know. But you get the gist! You'll notice the flooring is also different - I bought peel and stick laminate from Lowes in this wood pattern. THAT project has been a complete nightmare. I love the way it looks but its still not completely done its so annoying to do. AND there's a panel in the middle that has since moved to the side a bit, so that's why there's a green rug covering it! I plan on adding a few birch tree rings to put soaps on, replacing all the blue towels with brown and grey and placing hooks on the wall where the longer branches are to hang towels. Maybe I'll even get rid of the awful towel holder! Who knows. For now though, I like it a heck of a lot better.

The birch tree wall came with a complementary deer! Haha! Good 'ol Ranger always has to be in the know, so when I wanted to take more pictures tonight he decided he would take part.

As you can see, one Great Dane puppy takes up the entirety of our bathroom! I'm standing in the tub to take these photos!
Thanks for reading and if you have any questions, feel free to ask.

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  1. This came out lovely, when I saw the green I was think "OK, that's bright" but once I realised that was peeled off it all made lots more sense!

    1. HAHA! That would be one loud bathroom wall!

  2. Debbie says,
    What a cool idea. Not wallpaper, but paint.
    Hmm.... Do I have the patience......

    1. I just put some loud music on, got a glass of wine and got to it. I didn't rush through it or try to make it a chore - it took me around 5 hours to complete including paint drying time :)