Sunday, April 11, 2010

Filling wall space (in a big boy room)

airplane art

Helloooo there! Hope you had a great weekend! I am SO excited to show you the progress on the Bub’s room! It is coming together so beautifully, I’m just thrilled.

There are a few toughies when decorating any space, and one of those is what to do with long, empty wall space. They are everywhere, obviously. Above sofas, down hallways, transitional areas from room to room.

When it comes to these empty spaces, I usually go to my tried and true -- molding of any kind. Why? It’s cheap. It’s easy. And it creates BIG impact.

The Bub’s room is a long one – with two large expanses of wall. When I decided on the navy blue paint, I knew I wanted to keep the room bright by breaking up the dark color with art spaces on the long walls.

When I painted the walls a few weeks ago, I left some of the wall unpainted. On one wall, my idea was do to a series of three prints, framed out with molding. To start, I cut out paper the size of the frames to figure out my measurements for the molding:

Ignore the one that fell off the wall, and the one on the way off. Just imagine three, K? :)

Once I had my measurements, I started cutting and nailing, my two favorite things to do. Nothing quite like using a compound miter saw and a nail gun to make your day. (I’m a freakedy freak!)

The result was this:

molding boxesI usually go to Lowe’s for molding, but Home Depot has a great selection too. I grabbed this stuff for about $4 (for eight feet) – that is a great deal. It’s an mdf composite. Cuts like buttah. But everything cuts like buttah with my saw. (Swoon…)

For the art, I ordered vintage airplane prints from They were all 9x13 and were only $3.99 each! Awesome!

Because of the odd shape, I knew I’d have to have mats cut (expensive!), try to cut them myself (annoying!) or just do what I always do, and do a fake mat. I started by trimming off the white edge around each print:

I just use my level to get a straight edge. Works great every time – just make sure to put a lot of pressure on the level so it doesn’t move around when you cut.

The mats that came in my Target frames were already white, so they would have looked great as is, but I wanted to tie in the wallpaper I used in the room. I used spray adhesive on the mat, covered it with the wallpaper, then used double stick tape to stick the art directly to the mat:

wallpaper mat wallpaper mat

The result? LURVE:

airplane art wall I painted the insides of each box with white semi gloss paint. I usually use high gloss for a project like this, but I got the Behr Ultra (paint and primer in one) for other areas in the room so I wanted this to match to the other spots (those are coming soon!)

I was initially going to do white frames, but I realized the white frame would get lost on the wall. I found these nickel frames at Target for $20 each – a lot for me – but they work perfectly with other accents in the room.

airplane art

I hung them on the wall and hot glued the ribbon so it looks like they are hanging – I’ve found if you actually try to hang a frame from a ribbon, it can stick out from the wall a bit.

I don’t know if you can tell, but my favorite little detail on this wall is the knobs – they were $2 each at Hob Lob and spell out “FLY”:

I just stuck the screw right into the wall! If you can’t tell by now – the theme of this big boy room is airplanes. :)

On the wall above his bed, I had a similar project in mind – I was going to take pictures of a vintage airplane and frame them out in a big molding box on the wall.

But I couldn’t find the vintage airplane that I was seeing in my head. :) And, I kind of forgot that Stink Eye Sister found an awesome airplane print for the Bub and gave it to us at Christmas:

So I knew I had to use it or she would totally pull the stink eye on me and the stink eye is totally annoying. I absolutely LOVE the print – we adore New York City and can’t wait to take the Bub there, so the photo really is special to us.

I just framed it out on the wall and put a piece of acrylic over it (from one of the big poster frames):


Then I painted it all out in the semi gloss white:airplane poster artIt is soooo freaking cool. The acrylic does slide out, so we can change this out eventually if we want. I LOVE how it looks built in. And I love how it’s not what I initially planned but I love it so much more.

So two huge, long walls are now filled. The total cost of the molding for both walls was about $40. My time was the investment. And there is no room I’d rather invest in.  ;)


Classic navy blue and white afters:

I adore them. And I can’t wait to show you the next step in the room. :)


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