The Stencil and Glitterati Fail

Spring 2019 ORC: Week 3 {Where plans are thwarted and everything goes awry}

So, when I drafted this post last week – before I had actually done any painting – I had a VERY different expectation of the direction of this post. But that’s the fun in blogging right – sharing my mishaps with the internet? TDLR: things did not go as planned on Tuesday.

If you’ve landed here from the One Room Challenge, Welcome! We’re currently working on our second home, a gloriously 80’s contemporary, located in Upstate NY. She just needs a little TLC to bring her back to her former glory. If you’d like to see some of our past work, start here.
Need a refresher? Week 1 ~ Week 2 ~ Week 3 ~ Week 4 ~ Week 5 ~ Week 6

The Plan:

A few weeks back I had excitedly purchased this stencil from Royal Design Studios. I had this idea that I would do something tone on tone, because I really liked the white vibrancy of this room, and I thought between the plants and the chandelier, the walls needed to be quiet. Not plain, but just quiet. Best supporting actress, not the lead. Quiet electricity was actually the term I came up with when I was brainstorming the feeling I wanted when I walked into this space.

So I went down to Home Depot and grabbed a few test posts in off whites and light grays, as one does.

And I picked up these laminate shelves, and these simple, but modern looking black brackets.

I picked up a few hanging plants.

And after some extensive research, I picked up GLITTER PAINT.

Yep, this is where things started going screwy with my plan.

The Prep:

Yesterday, APRIL 16 ALSO KNOWN AS THE DAY ALL TAX ACCOUNTANTS GET THEIR LIFE BACK I woke up feeling GOOOOD. Even with a touch of a hangover, I was bouncing off the walls with the weight of my first tax season back in public accounting (after about 8 years on the private side) over with.  I even made some cheesy videos that I had planned to post to stories detailing how I was going to fix my bad drywall patch jobs, but it ended up being even easier than I expected so I took moved on quickly to painting .

Here’s the thing about repainting white walls white. It’s only satisfying in person. A photo doesn’t really capture the dirt and grime that is now gone. But! I did it, I painted two walls nice and white. Tom even agreed to let me take down the blinds over the door (but we are saving them in the basement and not patching the holes until after summer, just in case we decide we really need them up).

And then the real fun (or so I thought) was about to take place. Test swatches. Indulge me and let me back up a bit.

About 2 years ago my husband and I stayed at a great B&B in the Catskills and I nearly died when I realized they had glitter in the paint of their navy blue dining room. There was a lot of awkward wall petting at breakfast. I was fascinated, and clearly kept it in the back of my mind. Fast forward to a few weeks ago, to what started as an innocent scroll through IG. I kept seeing photos where there was light dancing around the room. I soon realized there was disco ball in all of these photos. I didn’t exaaactly want to hang a disco ball from my chandelier (itmightbeabitmuch) and I was reminded of the soft glow in that B&B dining room.  My stencil was already ordered and on the way, but I went into research overdrive. I kept coming back to Rustoleum’s iridescent glitter paint. Many of the reviews kept stating how subtle the glitter was – this was great! I’m not painting a 12 year old girls’ bedroom, this is our eat-in kitchen, and frankly, we might like the occasional quirk in design, but I’m not quite prepared to go full on unicorn in here. So I scooped up 2 cans, assuming I could always return it.

Meanwhile, the stencil arrived. And the pattern was a bit bigger than I expected. I went back to the photos on the site and realized my mistake – I was expecting pattern sizing akin to their furniture stencil. I flopped and flipped on returning it and buying a new one (this was about a week ago at this point). I even contacted them about making a custom small pattern but on a large wall stencil (which they agreed to, but for an extra cost, that I wasn’t exactly sure I was ready to spend). Plus returning the wall stencil would include a restocking fee and shipping fees. Besides, I was actually pretty much fully on board with this whole Let’s-Just-Glitter-Paint-Everything idea anyway.

The Problems:

Ok, back to Tuesday afternoon. While searching for some foam brushes, I found a hole punch. I decided to create a little test template to do my wall swatches of the various test pots. I can’t return the stencil if the package is opened, but I felt like I needed to see everything on the wall before making a real decision.

I very quickly eliminated the two off whites. You could barely see them, and that seemed like a lot of work to barely see something. The gray seemed ok, but even Tom said it looked way too hand-painted. This was actually a common review comment for the stencil, so I wasn’t surprised to hear him say that. But the biggest bummer is that…I didn’t like the iridescent paint either. Subtle doesn’t begin to explain it (I’ve read you really need to do 2-4 coats) but what I wasn’t ready for (but should have anticipated) is the sheen that is left on the wall due to the clear paint that is adhering the glitter onto the wall. I am an all-matte girl, all the way. I can’t even capture an accurate photo to show you.

Immediate and utter mood deflation ensued. To top it off, we had kindergarten orientation (HOW IS THAT EVEN POSSIBLE HE WAS JUST BORN) for my oldest that evening, so I was basically in a glass case of emotions from 4pm on.

But it’s Wednesday morning as I’m typing this now. I think I have two (technically three) options:

  1. I can return the large pattern stencil and get the smaller scale pattern stencil. Or look for another stencil. My cheapo template holes were slightly smaller than the original, so maybe that contributed to not loving my test swatches? I did the ‘offloading of paint’ – but maybe my foam brush was to blame? Maybe I just need a bigger area painted to decide?
  2. I can buy a few glitter additives and dump it into the remaining half bucket of white paint. I think this would eliminate the sheen I was seeing from the clear paint, but I’m afraid the glitter additive might still be too much and we end up in the unicorn bedroom scenario again. I’m reading a lot of reviews – seems like buffing is the key and the photos look like what I’m envisioning. Ack but some people are also complaining it doesn’t work. Who do I believe??
  3. I could scrap everything and leave the walls white. This seems like a cop out, and it’s not what I want to do, but maybe once everything else is complete I’d be ok with it? I don’t really think this is an option for me.

I really don’t know what I’m going to do, but I do know I need to make some decisions ASAP.  Pleaaaase sound off in the comments on what you would do? Is there some other alternative I’m missing? Any stenciling advice? Anyone ever try the glitter additives? Does the idea of glitter scare you?

In other news, the velvet fabric arrived last night! So I’ll probably switch up my plan and try to get the chairs and macrame hangers done by next week (week 4!) and hopefully paint and shelf install will be done by week 5.  If you are into GoT and/or medieval birthday parties, I’ve got a few more posts coming in the next two-three weeks as well. Don’t trust me to post on IG to tell you new posts are up, just subscribe (in the right sidebar) to get posts sent directly to your inbox. We bloggers love subscribers (right

Thank you again to Linda at One Room Challenge.  Spread the love and check out the featured participants other guest participants HERE!

Psst: This post may contain affiliate links (read more here), at no additional cost to you. Thanks for supporting I am Kilo Bravo!

6 replies
    • Kayla
      Kayla says:

      Ahh so we actually thought we would paint all the wood trim in this house BLACK when we were in the process of buying it. I was going for Parisian apartment. But between realizing how much trim there is, and actually liking the color in person, (but mostly realizing how much wood trim there is) we gave up on the idea. I ordered some glitter additive after that post went up – should be coming today! Fingers crossed I finally get one of the looks I’m going for…

  1. Marcie
    Marcie says:

    What about using an iridescent glitter pen to draw a design on the wall?. It would be linear (think all of the Sharpie walls that are on Pinterest) but more subtle with a light colored permanent marker. I’m not sure which brand would work but there are some good glitter perm markers out there. A white Sharpie paint marker might even do it with a tone on tone look but sheen change. The stencil thing is hard – does it look too “stenciled” etc. Good luck.

    • Kayla
      Kayla says:

      Yeah…the stencil was ‘too stenciled’ for the clean look I was going for. More research and reviews proved it’s just not for our home. I have some gold sharpie paint pens already lined up for an art deco design in our next bathroom phase 1 reno! Great minds think alike… 🙂


Leave a Reply

Want to join the discussion?
Feel free to contribute!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.