Baby Andy's Bachelor Pad

In our latest blog I introduced you all to our newest family addition - Adrienne and Jim’s baby, Andrew Joseph, born Oct. 2. Before the arrival of little Andy, Adrienne and I worked together on preparing his new room.

Adrienne purchased the Owls Sky collection design from Dwell Studio, a company with interesting patterns, (not standard issue Babies “R” Us) with bea
utiful color combinations. Stephanie, Baby Jackson and I were visiting about 5 weeks before Andy was due so I could help with the baby’s room décor.

Their Boston apartment is done in greyed turquoise and deep lime greens with raspberry accents. Since it is a city space (which means smallish), she wanted to use a color for the baby’s room that worked with the rest of the place
– no jarring differences when you entered his room. But, we also wanted to make it very special. So, when Jimmy frowned on wallcovering I came up with the idea of painting it in stripes that would echo wallcovering.

When I was married in 1973, I wanted to make our first apartment very special too, so I striped the walls in the bathroom in a hot pink and white. This
was way before I knew about blue painter’s tape, so the results (I loved this room) were uneven and very circus-like. I also made the stripes too narrow in this tiny room so the optical effect was very present. Many a guest, who might have had a bit too much wine or beer came out of that bathroom looking glazed and dizzy.

Well, time has passed and now I truly do know how to stripe a room by hand even though I had not done it in so long. Here is the plan:

You will need your supplies – a good ruler (I think a yardstick in to
o difficult to work with), two rolls or more of ScotchBlue Painter's Tape in 1 ½ “ width, a pencil with a good, clean eraser, a ladder and then all of your regular painting supplies.

First, paint the entire room the color you want the alternating stripe to
be – in our case, white. Then, allow it to dry and leave it alone for a day or two. If you start taping too early, the original paint will peel. We chose Sherwin Williams' Baize Green for our alternating color.

Now, the difficult part is deciding on how wide you want the colorful stripes to be. You have so many choices – they can be the same width, or really any
size you prefer. I was originally thinking of making all the stripes about 8” – thank goodness my daughter-in-law was also visiting, as she reminded me how optic a narrow stripe could be. I happened to have a 15” ruler with me, so that is what I decided to go with.

I began by starting in the corner behind the door – of course our room was not going to be divided evenly at 15” so it was important to start in the least noticeable area. When you finish and have to adjust the stripe width, you can do it where no one will really look.

Begin by measuring out 15” widths down the wall, marking your way with little pencil marks. Do one line at a time, then tape that line. Do not try to get ah
ead and measure more than one line at a time as you will drive yourself nuts and make mistakes.

Here comes the tricky part. When you tape over the white, remember you have to put the tape on the inside line of the white, (which means it is the outside line of the green) so when you remove the tape all the stripes are even. I would constantly check myself to make sure the tape was in the right place, by putting small pencil arrows showing direction at the top each stripe. Always check yourself in a pro
ject like this so when you start painting all goes smoothly and you don’t find out midstream one stripe is the wrong width.

Tape the entire room before you start painting unless you have a partner. In my case, I had Stephanie with me (Adrienne was working). When I had about 2/3 of the taping done, Baby Jackson fell asleep so Steph started the painting behind me, which was a huge help. At the end, I did have to adjust the stripes - all you do is measure the distance remaining (remember I was behind a door) and divide it. I ended up with two stripes being 12”, hardly a noticeable problem.

We had great success!! Peeling off the tape is the most wonderful, satis
fying feeling. There were a few areas where the green paint crept under the tape, but those were so easy to fix with the white base paint. Baby Andy’s bachelor pad was ready for his furniture and all the rest! Check out the finished product in the photos below. In the next blog, I will tell you how I made an adorable window treatment and night light out of a shower curtain!!


Introducing Baby Andy

Our family has been very blessed this year with the births of two healthy grandsons. Our second grandson, Andrew Joseph was born on Oct. 2 to our daughter Adrienne and her husband, Jim.

Baby Andy was born a week past his due date and was a long time coming. He simply was enjoying himself too much right where he was and it took a lot of coaxing and time to get him to come out and meet his new world. But, eventually he did and he is beautiful and healthy and sweet.

I was fortunate to be in Boston to meet him immediately after his birth and to hold him at once. He weighed 8lbs. 3oz. and you definitely forget how tiny that is, even though that is a very good weight for a newborn. I visited with the new family for a week and it was magical, seeing him change a bit every day, being able to hold him anytime I wanted, and marveling at how great our daughter is doing both physically and mentally (she is SO much more together as a first-time mom than I ever was, that’s for sure).

Of course his days and nights are beginning to get scrambled – they fool you that first week since they sleep so much and I am sure Adrienne and Jimmy have a lot in store for them in the coming weeks but they can handle it!

Another thing I have noticed with my son and son-in-law – this generation of new fathers is miraculous. They are so interested in every aspect of baby care, are sad if they cannot spend enough time with the baby and are able to take time from work for paternity leave. When I had our two children, Mike was with me at the hospital and then brought me home and went back to work. In those days the moms’ had the responsibility of caring for the baby – well thank goodness NOT ANY MORE! These dads are amazing and loving and just so very, very proud to be part of it all.

Baby Andy is the luckiest little guy of all since he has two parents that love him and each other so much and is also living in a totally cool apartment in Boston with a park around the corner!! Can’t wait until Thanksgiving when we will all be back in Cincinnati and the new cousins, Jackson (born June 1) and little Andy will get to meet each other!