Craft Room Makeover |For what it's worth

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Craft Room Makeover

My craft room has been in need of a makeover since before we bought this 1956 fixer upper.  During the 1970’s the original homeowners put paneling in this room plus several others.  I’ve turned this dark and dated d├ęcor into a light airy space with an inexpensive paint make over without removing the paneling. This DIY home improvement is an easy and rewarding project a beginner or novice can accomplish in a long weekend under $100.

craft room make over

After a year long break due to health issues I’m back to my favorite activity of DIY home improvement.  Because I need frequent breaks this project took a couple of weeks but with a bit of push it could be completed in a long weekend. 

InkedBefore of craft room_LI

Before the actual makeover began I spent some time cleaning out my supply closet.  With my collection of craft supplies reorganized I set to work prepping the room.  Furniture was moved to the center of the room and draped with plastic sheeting. Old drapes and the ugly gold rods that held them were discarded. Electrical covers removed and floor covered.

I used one of my folding craft tables to gather my supplies for the makeover.

what to use when painting panneling

Craft Room Makeover Supplies:

I started on a small wall behind the door so I could test out a couple of techniques to find the look I wanted.  I knew I wanted a smooth wall with little texture and to leave a subtle hint of stripes.  I settled on filling the grooves and scraping away as much as possible either side of the filled groove. 


P.S.  I could have removed the paneling and painted the wall beneath but I’m pretty sure there’s no -or very little- insulation in that room so I elected to keep the paneling as a layer of insulation from the outside.  (The room is a converted garage.)

I gave the spackling the recommended time to dry then used an electric palm sander to smooth it out.  You can do this by hand if you don’t have an electric sander but it speeds the process greatly.  While I was using the sanding supplies I gave the window casing and framing a roughing up so the paint I planned to brighten the white trim would adhere easily.

sand down paneling

Once everything was sanded nice and smooth I used a dust mop and old t-shirts to wipe away the dust.  A soft dry bristle paint brush works great along the top of baseboards and windows to sweep away the dust.  Gratefully I had a couple of 70 degree Fahrenheit days so I could open windows. Ventilation is a very good thing!

Use dust mop to get rid of sanding dust

Two coats of primer over the dark paneling will keep the color from bleeding through.  I bought gray primer because I originally planned to paint the room gray but when I received the new curtains I ordered, a quick test of holding them up to a gray wall in my bedroom and against a country white wall in the living room caused me to change my mind. I liked the lighter wall with the curtains better. But the gray primer didn’t hinder my country white paint I ended up using.  The important thing to note here is just to use a primer before painting your final wall color.  If you are a first time painter, use blue painters tape around windows/doors/ceilings to prevent accidental paint  bumping onto those surfaces. Wipe away any spots you may get on areas you don’t want painted right away.  It’s a lot easier when it is still damp.  Use a quality “cut in” bristle brush to paint around ceilings, windows and doors.  The rest of the paint will go on easily and quickly on walls with a paint roller.  There are handle extenders available to make reaching higher easy.  Of course a ladder or step stool helps extend your reach too.

After three coats of good quality wall paint I could see my room as it is for the first time.  I really love the light color of the walls and bright white trim on the windows.  I feel my creative juices flowing already and am ready to get crafty.

DIY Craft Room Makeover Project Skill level:

Easy to moderate.  An inexperienced person can accomplish this project pretty easily in a few days.
For more DIY renovation projects check out my 1956 Fixer Upper and  our previous 1970 Home Renovations.

Estimated painted paneling cost analysis:

(I already had paint roller handles, brushes, floor covering, step stool)

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