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Before: Bare Minimum
"My husband is a member of the Canadian Armed Forces, and we currently live in base housing," says home-decor blogger and military spouse Ariel Garneau.
"The biggest change we can make to our housing is painting the walls. The secret to making our house feel like a home is in the details and the spaces we create."
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"As you can see from the before photos, the room was fairly bland and connected through an accordion door to our dining room."
"We have exposed brick walls throughout half the house, and we wanted to play off that element with a more traditional design feature -- wainscoting and wall borders. Because we can't physically add wainscoting or wall borders, we found a way to replicate the look using painters' tape."
Materials: Paint, painters' tape, level, square
Duration: 36 hours
Process: "Paint the wall the color that you want the border to be. You don't need to paint the entire wall, just the space where you want the frame to be. Wait to dry."
"Measure and tape the frames on the wall using painters' tape. If your walls are not straight, you will have to base the boxes and details off a central point instead."
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"Start painting the walls using your dominant wall color. Go over the painters' tape, making sure that the paint isn't too heavily spread over the tape, or it will pull and rip when you pull the tape off later."
"Repeat as many times as necessary to ensure desired coverage, while respecting drying times. Once all the walls are dry, slowly peel back the painters' tape to reveal the wainscoting and framing."
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"Because the wainscoting is painted, when we get posted and are moving, all we have to do is paint over the walls instead of patching holes."
"The way we framed our boxes was to feature certain pieces of art and mirrors. If we hadn't had those pieces to guide our painting, we might have ended up with something completely different. Everything has its place!"
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After: Mix-and-Match Styles
"Our choice of art complements the design of the room while some classic and midcentury-modern furniture pieces make for a unique style that represents us."
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After: Starting Fresh
"We love our home and think it represents us as a couple. Military life isn't always easy or fun, but most people don't see starting from scratch as an exciting design challenge. I do! I look forward to making over many homes to come."
For Ariel's complete house tour, please visit www.pmqfortwo.com.