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Now I'm back from my second internship! This time I've worked with decorative painting at Kulturhuset in Skövde. And it has been so much fun!


Earlier this autumn, I contacted Skövde's cultural producer Jonna Ahlander and asked if they needed a practicing decor painter anywhere. It all ended up with me during my internship having free hands to do what ever I wanted on the walls in the room Kulturiet at Kulturhuset. It used to be Robert Gustafson's old "stage room" ( a Swedish, famous comedian) where he began his journey and to which he had his own key to go and rehearse performances when he was little. The room has looked the same for many years and it was now quite worn and previously painted in a little crazy colors like bright orange and green and they now wanted this room to get a new look. Do you understand what a dream project to go bananas in an entire room in that way? I've been in heaven!


This room is intended for smaller gigs or other types of events. It has a small kitchen / bar, a few pillars in the middle of the room and a small stage at the other end. And beautiful, large, black doors with brass details! When I was brainstorming ideas, I immediately thought of sound waves for some reason. I wanted to make a pattern like sound waves to follow every wall around the room. To symbolize the music that would be played there and meetings between people. I thought that the doors with brass details in the room were so beautiful so I wanted to highlight these by making the pattern in gold / brass. Then I wanted to paint smoke. A mysterious smoke... Just like it can be at gigs. So I tried to put these two elements together in some way. And here are some pictures from the process.


This is what it looked like before:

Through that door you enter.


Jonna shows me around. This is what the view looked like from the entrance.


The kitchen / bar counter.


Robert, a bit of renovation chaos and the scene behind it. Then it was time for me to start working! :)


The whole room was repainted with a light gray color. Then I started by painting the "smoke" that should follow the golden pattern around the room.



When I was going to draw the pattern. I photographed the wall with the painted smoke and then drew on that photo with my drawing tablet. I think it makes it a lot easier when you paint this big. To see that the lines flow and give a good balance before you really get started.



I cut together a small film about how I made one of the walls. First the cloud of smoke and then when I drew the golden pattern with posca pencils.


The pattern begins to take shape.


Then I took a break from the mural and focused on the kitchen for a while. There was old, black decorative plastic that was a little crooked and there were half / broken tiles in places. So I removed all the old decorative plastic and replaced these with brass as well. Then I glued a small mdf board and filled all the big holes that I then painted so they look like real tiles.


Behind the decorative plastic were light blue squares.


Tada!


Then I continued with the pattern at the entrance. I made this a little bigger and more detailed, as if the sound waves cross here and continue out at each end of the room.



Nu är alla väggar färdiga!


The Robert Gustafson sign on the counter will be removed later.


Since I study how to gild and marble, I thought I might take the opportunity to do that with the pillars so the room feels a little more luxurious.


Black marble in the making.


Making a looot of tiny white lines...


Gilded the bottom of the pillars with brass leaves which I then patinated.


Very ergonomic working position! I forgot to take pictures on the pillars when everything was ready but I will go back and make the final touches during the Christmas holidays. So you will get an update!


That's about as far as I've got in these weeks. But I'll be back during the Christmas holidays and fix the last things and put on a top coat on the pillars. They are painted with oil paint so it takes a while before it dries.


And! the best of all!! At the beginning of next year, when they have also finished renovating the outer wall of the room, they will throw a party at the new Kulturiet with some music and other goodies! Then I will be on site and talk a about who I am, how the thoughts went around the motif for the mural and the process behind it. You are all warmly welcome! More info about this this coming soon.


Thank you very much dear Jonna and everyone else at Kulthurhuset who I've gotten to know during these weeks. For the trust in this project and for that you have all taken such good care of me. It has been absolutely fantastic! <3



It's been so long since I wrote here again! Lately, a lot has happened. I had some summer vacation from school and then I worked at Colorama here in Skövde. Super fun! When it comes to decorative painting, I feel pretty confident in what products to use but when it comes to house facades and outdoor environments, I am a little more lost. So it has been great! I've learned so much! And everyone who works there are so sweet at proffesional. After that I took three weeks off enjoying the swedish summer with our little family. We built a terrace at home and rented a camper and traveled down through Sweden. And poof, the holiday was over. But it was wonderful!


Now I'm back at Tibro Craft Academy. Term 3 of 4. In august we started the course restoration with a focus on gilding. We got various worn gilded objects that had to be repaired and gilded again. Me and my classmate Lovisa got a pendulum where the gold was loose or gone in several places. So then we had to learn how to rebuild the surface and make it merge with the old gilding that was left.


It looked like this:









And this is how it turned out after we gilded, patinated and put all the parts back together again. I think gilding is super fun! But this particular thing about restoring pendulums, I'm not sure if that's my thing. It's incredibly time consuming! I will not nerd myself and write all the steps that need to be done to gild in this way (Then you will probably fall asleep). But it was very instructive and fun to learn! And I'm impressed by those who work with this type of restoration!


Then it was time for course B in spray painting. We had a few days with theory and then we had to bring our own projects from home to work with. I brought our worn coffee table. And our whole kitchen (haha). So I had my hands full there for a while. But it's sooooo fun with spray painting! It turn out so smooth and nice! Now I'm thinking about where I can build my own spray booth at home. I'll need to buy a bigger houses for all toys!


Here's what it looked like:


This is what our coffee table looked like before. Damaged and worn.



I removed the old paint, grinded the surface and primed it.



Spray painted one of the parts in black again.


And I took the small disc with me home and marbled it (This is the underside). Ebba kept me company :)


And this is how the top turned out.


Tadaa! Finished!



Then it was time for the kitchen! 35 cabinet doors to be precise. Had I known how many times you would need to grind all the cabinets (and that I would get my life's first back shot in the meantime) I would probably have changed my mind and chosen a smaller project. But now that everything is done, I am very happy that I brought the kitchen!


We have lived in our house for 2 years now. The kitchen was nice! But not our style. But at the same time it felt very unnecessary to spend a lot of money on replacing the kitchen when it was in such a good standard. So this was a perfect opportunity for a little refreshment! So we chose to change the color of the doors and plug the holes for the old fittings and change them to something more modern.


This is what it looked like before (a little too rustic and white for our taste).


This is what it looked like without cabinet doors. An absolutely wonderful environment when you have a 2-year-old in the house (haha).


Grinded, primed and made new holes for the handels.


First you grind the doors, then you prime, then you grind them again, then you prim them again, then you grind them again and then! Finally on with some topcoat!


And this is how the kitchen turned out with some new color and handles! (Jotuns "Comfort gray" - gloss 15) I'm so happy with the result!


Now I'll just need to paint the frame as well and possibly change the countertop.Then it's done! :)

  • Sanna Wieslander

We moved to our house in Skövde about 1.5 years ago now. We have repainted almost every room and now it's really starting to feel like home. But we still had one room left that we didn't like at all. The bathroom!


The whole house now goes in the color scale gray and beige with elements of different natural materials. Except from the toilet where there still was a tile floor with a Moroccan (-isch) pattern in the colors red, gray and black. I got really stressed and annoyed every time I spent time in there.


This is what the bathroom looked like before:





We've been thinking for a long time about laying some form of concrete floor (or concrete-like tiles) on that toilet. But for me, it felt like a very big project to renovate a bathroom. There's so much to think about with waterproofing, underfloor heating ect. So we ended up doing nothing at all instead. But then (one year later) we found something called VITRUVIUS microcement at www.designbycement.com. Instead of tearing out the whole floor, you put this on top. And it only builds 2 mm!


All said and done, we ordered a sample kit (it's for free), chose the color we wanted, calculated how much was needed and then just ordered it all home and got started. It took about 4 days for us happy amateurs (and a 2 year old) to finish the floor. And we were sooo happy with the result! When the floor was ready, we also took the opportunity to treat ourselves with a new industrial shower wall that we fell in love with.


This is how it turned out afterwards:





Didn't it turn out nice? Now it feels calm and nice and finally the bathroom fits the rest of the house. It feels extra fun that we could actually do this ourselves without the help of "real" craftsmen. So now I felt that I just have to tip about this if there are more of you out there who share the same thoughts.


The company is called DESIGN BY CEMENT and the product we used is called VITRUVIUS microcement. This product can also be applied to walls, countertops, etc. and is also available in two other shades of gray. If you are curious and want to know more, I recommend having a look at their website: www.designbycement.com


Right now you also get a 10% discount on all their products until August 1, 2021 if you use the discount code: SW10. You are very welcome! ;)


Here are some pictures and step by step from our renovation:


This is what the floor looked like before.


We started by removing the toilet. Filled all joints with wet room putty and finished by sanding a little lightly to remove the checkerboard pattern and get the base smooth and fine.


Bye bye tiles!


Then we applied a primer all over the floor.The surface now feels almost like sandpaper.Let dry thoroughly.


Then it was time to apply the microcement mixture. We used a wide putty shovel and smaller putty shovels for small angles around the well and corners. We mixed and put out 1 kg at a time as the cement mixture dries quite quickly and becomes difficult to work with once it starts to solidify. It's good to be two who help each other.


I got a nice sweater too! Under the cabinets, I tried to lay out along the edges first. I don't know if a "real" craftsman does like that but it felt easier and turned out well!


Here, the entire floor is covered and are about to dry properly. Since the floor already had the right waterproofing layer and angles since before, we didn't have to think about that when the material only builds 2 mm (the grid pattern seen here disappears when the microcement has hardened properly).


When it has dried properly, polish the surface with a sander. Then you apply several layers of sealer that makes the floor breathable but water-repellent. Then apply a little silicone along the edges. And voila! Done!


What we noticed was that in the places where I "dotted" and didn't make large and soft movements with the wide putty shovel (as you should), the pattern became "livelier and denser" in the concrete. This is not visible until the surface is polished up with a sander. So for those who are good and used to this technique, you can get really smooth pattern if you want it. We got a little more life and movement in our floor. But I think it turned out great too! Regardless, you can influence how "lively" pattern you'd like depending on whether you make large or small movements with the putty spade when the microcement is laid out.


This is what it looked like before:


And this is how it turned out afterwards:

I'm so happy with this bathroom renovation! And it wasn't particularly difficult either! If you have the same thoughts and think this sounds like an exciting alternative, I really recommend going to www.designbycement.se and have a look! (and don't forget the discount code if you're ordering!)