Friday, January 18, 2013

My Take On Being Green! ~ The Birch Tree Stencil :D

Months ago I came across this spectacular birch tree stencil at Cutting Edge Stencils. I first saw it here, but Michelle has since switched things around a bit and now has it here in her house. I knew that I had the perfect spot in our home to use this fun stencil that would bring a more "natural" element into our home. (That counts as going green, right? ;-) I made the purchase months ago and waited for the perfect opportunity to take on this project. What better time to start a big project like this than a week before your big open house adoption party? I know, call me C.R.A.Z.Y! However, it was a great motivator to GET 'ER DONE! (ok, so it was 95% done in time for the party and I finally finished up the last little bit a few days ago.)

What was the perfect spot in our home for this, you ask? Well, Sam and I had many discussions over what to do in our long upstairs hallway. I wanted to do a framed collage wall and use up a lot of frames that I already had. Two problems arose with that idea...
  1. The hallway isn't super wide and with all of the many bodies we have walking around up there we didn't want to put a lot of things on the wall that would close in the space and/or that the kids would be knocking off the wall constantly.
  2. A lot of the bigger frames that I already owned were custom sizes with professional pictures of our youngest kids. Since I didn't have the same types of pictures of our three oldest kids there wasn't really any way I was going to be able to use those just yet without totally redoing all of their contents. 
Put those problems together and the the perfect place to add a beautiful forest to gaze on every morning...our upstairs hallway!

Here is the before picture of the space. This first one is a picture of the wall that you see when you first come up the stairs...

 And then you hang a right and this is the left wall - BEFORE

Here is the view of the wall on the right side of the hallway. However, I had another idea up my sleeve for this wall and so I painted it a solid color a shade different that the accent color of the trees. The shot below is what it looked like before I painted it. More on that project in the future.

In doing this project, I found the videos on the stencil store's website most helpful. Along with the tutorials that other bloggers have done here and here. I am so glad that I happened to have caught somewhere that this particular stencil was a reverse one where you have to paint the wall a solid white for the trees and then use your accent color for going over the stencil. I would have assumed that it was the other way around!

I got everything in place and finally got going. It doesn't look like much to start but this shows how big the stencil is.

Once you remove the stencil for the first time you start to catch the vision and you get excited enough to keep going even if you are wishing at this point that you had just gone with wall paper.

Then you line things up and repeat, and repeat, and this case one might think to herself, "why did I pick one of the longest walls in our house!?!"

But then you find yourself at the end...finished...and TOTALLY in love! It's kind of like child know it was a painful experience but all you see is the beauty before you decide, sure...I would do it again if enough time elapsed between experiences! :-D 

I give you...the finished project!

birch tree stencil
tree stencil
birch stencil
colorful mix with birch tree stencil

Ideas/Projects to do in the upstairs hallway...

Paint stencil wall
Paint the other three walls in the hallway
Have a custom valance created by my talented mother using fabric that adds color and pizazz!
Change out the door knobs on all of the doors (so that our guest room door can be locked for instance.)
Paint the doors. (I'm thinking...THIS...what do you think?)
Track down the kids birth info from the hospital they were born in to complete the 2nd wall in the hallway.

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