Sunday, May 31, 2009

A Tutorial: Ellison's Scalloped Walls...

I have had a lot of questions about how I painted the scallops in Ellison's bedroom, so I decided to do a tutorial.

Two things you should know first:

1. I do not at all claim that this is the easiest way of going about painting scallops!
This is just my way!
If any of you have an easier, more efficient system, by all means...share your knowledge!

2. I apologize in advance for the pictures of my process. They were taken at night under terrible lighting, but this is all I've got!
The reason they were taken at night is because that is when I do my painting. Yep - that's my secret! With three small kids running around, it is pretty much impossible to get any kind of painting done during the day, so once everyone is tucked soundly in their beds, that's when my paint brushes come out!
In the case of Ellison's bedroom, I had her in her pack-n-play in my bedroom so that I could get her room done!

Whatever works, right?

Now that my disclaimer is out of the way, onto the how-to...

You will need:

a level (a long one),

a pencil (or something to mark on your walls),

a saucer (or a round object that fits the size that you want your scallops to be),

and painters tape

First, I used the painter's tape to create a center line on the saucer. The top edge of the tape divides the saucer exactly in half. This is important because...

...the points where the tape wraps around the back are the marks that you will use to line up your scallops. If you haven't created perfect half-circles your scallops will look "off".

(Take note: this is where the bad pictures begin. Click on the image and it will enlarge...hopefully you will be able to see the details better)

The first thing I did in her room was pick the height I wanted the scallops to sit at. I wanted them to be above the tallest point on her crib, so that was the determining factor for me.
I painted my top and bottom colors up to a centralized line.
Once the paint was dry, I took my 4' level and marked the line all the way around the room.
I then took my saucer, which had already been taped off, put it against the wall with the bottom of the plate facing me, and where the tape folded over the edge is where I lined up the plate with the level line.

Sheesh. I hope that makes sense...

I then used my pencil to lightly trace the bottom of the saucer onto the wall.

You can see it here:

...and here...

Once I had traced my saucer all the way around the room, I grabbed my paintbrush and filled them in with the pink...

And then...did it again.
It needed two coats...

It was A LOT of work, but when it comes to kids rooms, I'm more of a "Go big, or go home!" kind of person, so doing this was completely worth it to me!

Once they were done I felt like they were good, but....missing something.

So each scallop got a polka-dot above each point...

I did the polka-dots by using one of these... the absolute smallest size I could find. I wanted the dots to be dainty and petite.

A little helpful tip about these pouncers:

Swirl. Don't dab! And make sure that you swirl a complete circle.

Trust me on this one!
It will save you the frustration and agony of having to wipe fresh dots off your walls for re-do's!

I love how the scallops and polka-dots turned out!

So much, in fact, that many months later I decided to add more...

I needed something to draw your eyes up when you walked into the room...

I love polka-dots. She loves polka-dots!

It was a natural choice!

I did these dots using a sponge pouncer (or whatever they are really called) as well, but in a much larger diameter. And the same goes for these...make sure to do a full swirl! That's the secret to achieving a perfect circle!

And that's it!

If I left something out, let me know! I would be happy to answer any questions!

Oh - and if anyone goes for it (a couple of you have already told me you're ready to do it right now), come back and let me know! I would love to see your pictures!

Good luck and happy painting!

P.S. The colors in her room are by Behr.
The pink is called Primrose Bouquet #PPL-43
The green is called Palm Breeze #420E-2


~Allie~ said...

you are the sweetest for posting this!!!!!!! thanks a bunch! I will definately post pics when finished.. please let me know about the dadnelion advice on my blog ;) You are one of my fav blogs and I really appreciate all you do on here. I was trying to figure how to paint the green part and it never even crossed my mind you painted the pink part! hahaha hilarious. anyway..thanks again. It will be about a month before I paint her room...but I will let you know when i am finished! What color paint did you use? Also, did you paint the ceiling pink?

abeachcottage said...

oh this is great, I had never thought of doing that, mine I think would be a bit less accurate!

happy decorating


Kathi said...

Your daughter's room is gorgeous!
Love the scallops and the polk dots! Thanks for the tips about the round sponge thingy. I've never had much luck with them... guess I just wasn't doing it right! Great tutorial! I just might try to do something like this in my "new" dollhouse!

Amanda @ Serenity Now said...

Beautiful!!! I think *I* want to live in a room like that. ;) So cute!

Courtney Baker said...

That is amazing. I love the small dots you added!

Mrs. Petrie said...

Your daughter's room is beautiful. It is clear that you put so much love into designing it. Love it!!

Jennifer said...

Thank you, Thank you! I really appreciate you posting this and as soon as I get mine done I will send pics. I am curious to know as well what colors you used as Allie has asked. : )
Thanks again!

Gena said...

That room is adorable! I wish my girls were still tiny so I had control of their room decorating...

Thank you so much for your numbering help. The instructions were perfect and as soon as it cools down enough here for me to paint my BLACK door, I'm going for it. I'll let you see the results, but it might be in November! (91 degrees here by 10 this morning)

AnNicole @ OurSuburbanCottage said...

I love this! It's so ingenious, and absolutely adorable!

Kelli said...

Great tutorial. I love the scallops, very cute.

Karla said...

Allie - I left the ceiling white this time, but I have painted ceilings before and with this pink it would totally work! It's soft and easy on the eyes!

The colors are by Behr. The pink is called Primrose Bouquet #PPL-43. The green is called Palm Breeze #420E-2.

Gena - Excellent! I can't wait to see it! :)

Thanks for all of your wonderful comments, everyone! You're all very sweet! XO


Tracey said...


BeckyS said...

I did scallops in my kids' ducky bath ... I traced half circles onto contact paper and cut out in long sections (several scallops to a strip) ... placed the "template" against a leveled line on the wall and used the contact paper template instead of painters tape ... rolled right over it and peeled off while still wet. The lines were perfect and except for the time to trace and cut ... it was super fast an easy!

Funky Junk Interiors said...

Brilliant idea! And so so pretty! Makes me wana make a little girl's room even though I don't have one of those. :)


the wild raspberry said...

soo sooo cute!
and i love the name ellison :)
have a wonderful day.

To The Moon and Back said...

Oh wow, thanks for the tutorial. I absolutely LOVE the dots and I may just try it in our daughter's shabby chic room.

Wendy said...

Oh, love it! But good Lord, how did you keep the polka dots at the top perfectly aligned and distanced? That takes more skill than I have, I am certain. Heh.

Kelly said...

So cute! thanks for sharing!

{ L } said...

This is INCREDIBLE!!! Wow, I am absolutely impressed.

{Bellamere Cottage} said...

Years ago Mary Englebreit did a bedroom in her little Minnesota get-away house with a scallop at the ceiling with sort of a lace stencil over was spectacular....I was going to try it but it DID take TONS of time so I just painted the whole blasted thing. You're one tenacious girl! And, it looks great.

Warm blessings,

Tami (Pixeltrash) said...

That is really cute. You didn't say how you spaced your dots. Did you just mark them with a level?
I wish I had seen this before I repainted my craftroom. It is my one girly room. Of course, now I might paint my sewing room. Love your ideas. Thanks for sharing!

Tami (Pixeltrash) said...

That is really cute. You didn't say how you spaced your dots. Did you just mark them with a level?
I wish I had seen this before I repainted my craftroom. It is my one girly room. Of course, now I might paint my sewing room. Love your ideas. Thanks for sharing!

Mom of the Twinkies and Tot! said...

OMG...this is absolutely precious! We just bought our first house and my twin daugthers room will be pink and green to match their crib bedding...I WAS going to do something boring like put a white chair rail up between the two colors but not anymore! I am absolutly going to go with the scalloped edge in their room now and I just love the polka dots to accentuate it!

Thanks so much for the great idea...I plan to check out all your other decorating tips for other rooms of our new house!

Liston said...

I DID IT! My little girl loves it. In her room, it looks like a tiara surrounding the room (it's a princess theme) I used light pink on top, two shades darker on bottom and aqua polka dots to tie in her bedding. Everyone loves it. I only took about 2 hours to do the bottom. It's not perfect, but it still looks great. Thanks for the inspiration, you have a great blog!!!

Lisa at Paint in my Hair said...

Hi there...I am a longtime reader who rarely comments but I'm coming out of hiding to say that I used your tips to do some scallops in a mural in my daughters' room and it turned out great...thanks for the advice and inspiration!! Mine is here if you want to see it: