DIY Paint Ideas: Disguise an Ugly Wood Floor With Paint

Replacing an old wood floor can be a time-consuming and expensive home project. If you don’t have the bandwidth or budget to refinish old wood floors, try updating them with paint. All you need are the right tools and a favorite paint color -- and maybe a great pattern idea to create a custom design that will liven up any drab surface (see below for our favorite ideas for home).

Interior designers such as Illinois-based Jeannie Balsam like to use this paint trick for a custom look. She’s executed the technique in several spaces, including her own design studio.

“An inexpensive and easy update is to paint an old stairwell, treads, thresholds or trim with glossy floor paint,” says Balsam. “The space immediately feels fresh and modern. To add a little interest, you can also incorporate numbers or words on the treads.”

Whether you want to paint wood floors, stairs or trim, consider this DIY home décor project to give any surface a dose of personality.

Time: approximately three days

Materials:

Sanding sponge
Sponge
Painter’s tape
Paint roller
Paintbrush
Pencil
Ruler
Porch or floor paint
Polyurethane

Steps:

1. Give the wood floor surface some traction and even out rough spots by grazing over them with a sanding sponge. With a damp sponge, wipe away sanding residue and allow it to dry.

2. Tape off all the areas you want to protect from the paint, such as baseboards. With a paintbrush, begin by painting your base color a few inches around the perimeter of the painting area. With a roller, fill in the rest of the area. Let dry and paint another coat if needed. Let dry overnight.

Skip to step 6 if you’re painting a solid color. If you’re painting a pattern*, follow steps 3 through 5.

3. Measure and tape off your chosen design (remember to measure twice and paint once!). Using painter’s tape, mark the areas you don’t want to paint with an X. Next, rough up the areas to be painted with a sanding sponge. Then wipe away sanded areas and stray pencil marks with a damp sponge (a pencil eraser can damage the base coat). Let dry.

4. With a paintbrush, paint your pattern. Clean up any drips or spills right away with a damp sponge.

5. Before the paint dries, carefully peel away the tape from the floor at an angle.

6. Let paint dry for a day. Once the floor is fully dry, apply a coat of polyurethane with a paint roller to seal in the new design against heavy foot traffic.



*Brush These Patterns On for Size:

Preppy Stripes: Aside from a solid color, this idea requires the least amount of tape. Go broad and bold with two colors for a classic look. Or add funky texture to a kid’s playroom with skinnier strips of three or more colors.

Checks: Don’t think gingham or chessboard -- unless that’s your intention. This pattern is about as versatile as it gets. Two-tone squares magically make everything else in a room seem more cohesive.

Faux Rug: Skip area rug hunting and bring on the double takes by painting one instead. Rather than tape off the whole floor, focus on one area of the room, or just leave a border of unpainted floor around the edges.


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Decorating Inspiration: 5 Easy Holiday Centerpieces

When you’re hosting for the holidays, it’s your time to shine. The perfect way to show off your hostess-with-the-mostest prowess is by placing an “I-would-never-have-thought-of-that” stunner atop your table or in your entryway. Check out our five holiday centerpiece ideas for some decorating inspiration. They may move you to create your own unique showstoppers -- or just duplicate these and call them your own. We won’t tell.















1. Old is New Again

To create this simple centerpiece, interior designer Virginia Burney dug through her old and unused ornaments and found a hodgepodge grouping that looks like it came in a ready-made pack. Stick to two or three colors of ornaments so the display isn’t too jarring. Here, a couple shades of red are accented by gold and topped with fresh pine branches from the yard for the perfect Yuletide table topper (and the pine adds a nice, fresh scent too!).















2. Understated Elegance

Want an elegant holiday centerpiece for your table? Let your table sparkle and shine with white tulip arrangements adorned with pretty ribbon and sparkling silver ornaments. This one, created by Laura Trevey of BrightBoldBeautiful.com, looks crisp and classic. Placing a few identical arrangements atop mirrors adds extra sparkle. Flank the arrangement with taper candles to further add to the ambiance.















3. Centerpieces of a Feather

This centerpiece by interior designer Candace Volz is particularly attention-grabbing, but it’s a style that can be used year round. Find a beautiful display box at a vintage store, fill the box with craft Styrofoam (sold in blocks at craft stores), then stick feathers throughout the foam in your desired arrangement. Try peacock feathers for extra color!















4. Simple Style

Want a contemporary centerpiece? Go the route designer Megan Crane went by filling a tall glass cylinder with water and floating a single stalk of orchids in it. Use glass stones to anchor the flowers at the bottom. “To make it more dramatic, try adding multiple containers to the table or try different heights and sizes,” she suggests. “The result will be a custom-designed floral arrangement that is sleek and unique!”















5. Fun and Fruity

To create this colorful display, interior designer and artist Carole Meyer used artificial fruit placed in shapely glass containers. “I try to buy the most real-looking artificial fruit I can, which is a bit more expensive but the look is worth it,” she says. To add extra color and contrast, place green moss at the bottom. These fruit displays can work year round. For a look that screams holidays, use pine cones and Christmas decorations. “Let your imagination go and have fun!” Meyer says.

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