Stick figures of Chloe, Andrew and Henderson with their camper parked in front of Blue Mountain beside the Susquehanna River. Playful Curiosity.

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Decorative Finishes - Chloe and her Mom (Patinas) do up the interior.
(August, 2012)

How do you torture an artist? Get out of the way and let them do it themselves.

When Chloe and I moved into this place (Jan 2005), we were under the gun. My lease ran out, we had to finish the repairs from the 9/19/2004 flood (24.40ft), close the loan before we lost our ridiculously awesome rate and wrap up the work before the Mountain Man had to start his new job. One (of many) compromises we made was in paint.

Now remember Chloe is a decorative painter and you can darn well bet that she had been fantasizing for years about painting her own place when she got one. Chloe and her mom aren't just hobbyists either. They've been doing this as their primary job for 11 years. They've been featured in magazines, two showhouses and even been flown out of state to do the vacation houses of regular local customers.

Point is, paint was a big place to compromise. But on top of being out of time, she didn't know what she wanted to do yet. It was our first time living together and the melding of two over 30's people's possessions was a little hard to predict design-wise.

The solution was one color - quick and dirty. We (she) would come back and do finishes later. Much later. Much later and not many finishes.

The "one" color was mixed wrong and in less than the time it takes for a rabbit to mate, Chloe hated the color. I agreed although it was easier for me to ignore it.

The one color behind a 59 Cazenave Moped.
Sample of the "one color". And a 1959 Cazenave Moped.

After a year or so, it drove her crazy enough to do a finish in the bathroom. A very relaxing green/brown trowel thing that made you feel like you were a bear defecating in the woods. She didn't like it and it didn't last. Still bums me out.

Instead we got a blue finish she liked better. (I never really did.) But the point was she was fighting back against the evil "one color".

Original finish in the bathroom covered in flood mud.
Bathroom finish covered in flood mud.

A couple years on and we went to eat at a restaurant she and her mom painted - Bricco a fine Italian restaurant run by a culinary school, the local community college (HACC) and the Hilton. I raved about the finish and convinced her to put it in our "river room" - the living room adjunct with all the windows.

Finish in River room - before and after.
Finish from Bricco - Before and After.

Red in the Kitchen.
Not a finish per se but it helped the "one color" problem.

This time round was going to be different. It helped that we knew how we used the various spaces in the house. We had furniture and sort of a style/theme established. Think 1800's naturalist holed up in a railroad cottage.

Even so, Chloe agonized for months about what she wanted to do. She/we narrowed it down to some broad ideas - green in the River room, orange/brown 70s in the office. The kitchen, bath and bedroom frustrated her.

We picked out the carpet and that really brought things together.


Sample of the Purple finish.
I call this the Carl Sagan finish - reminds me of a Nebula.

First Layer of the finish.
First layer - a light base and some texture.

Purple added to the finish.
Next Stage - some purple.

Stain to complete the finish.
Stain to complete it.


Kitchen in primer.
Kitchen in primer.

Nice thing about Chloe being in the paint business is that we had plenty of old paint stock to use. Some of it was used as primer.

Kitchen with layer two and three.
Layer two(left side). Layer two and three (right side).

Ren installing cabinets.
Ren installing cabinets.

Kitchen mostly complete.
Still need countertops and knobs.


First layer in the bathroom.
First layer.

Venetian Plaster.

Next layer of venetian plaster.
Next layer.

Bathroom mostly complete.
Walls are waxed and smooth as marble. Still unsure what to do about trim.


Chloe holding a sample.
Chloe holding a sample.

Office 70's Stripe.

Tape up for stripes.
Tape up for stripes.
Office stripes done.
Done all but a little touch up from pulling the tape.

River Room

First layer in the River Room.
First layer with texture.

The River Room - the room with a view.

Layer two and three.
Layer two (dark green) and three.
River room done.
First room completed.