Seriously, when all other projects feel too daunting/expensive to tackle (I’m looking at you, Bedroom), just paint a door or two. Enormous and immediate gratification.
Take this exterior back door, for example.
Someone had even scratched their name into the paint. I corrected it for them.
So satisfying! I sanded it a bit and then repainted with Rust-Oleum Stops Rust Protective Enamel in Gloss Smoke Gray.
Another example: someone got creative with brown paint on the exterior side of our apartment’s back door (the one leading to the catio). Yech.
Furthermore, the original brass door plate had been painted over so many times that you can hardly see the decoration.
I sanded the door, cleaned off the dust with Klean-Strip Easy Liquid Sander Deglosser, applied a coat of Kilz and then three coats of white paint.
I didn’t intend to dive into restoring the door plate, but once it was in our backyard I thought “Well, might as well…”
It required two rounds of stripper to simply expose the screws that allowed me to pry off the plate.
Then it was time for a soak in a pot of boiling water, followed by a Bar Keepers Friend + toothbrush scrub, followed by a lot of toothpicks. Rinse and repeat, three times.
In truth, I don’t even love the plate itself – it’s too ornate for my taste and I think the crystal knob looks we’re running a bed & breakfast – but I’m satisfied nevertheless to have recovered it from years of paint. I like seeing it when I come home, even if I’m also thinking “Man, that door needs a new knob.”
Both of these projects can serve as examples of why I never feel bad for doing things to our rented apartment “without permission.” Are my landlords sacrificing a Saturday to paint a blazing hot exterior door or restore a vintage door plate? Nope. I am. So, please excuse me: while I’m up on this high horse I’m going to replace a ceiling light fixture.
One more thing, on a more personal note: Happy 2nd Birthday to my niece Cora! I’ve been trying to teach her about feminism (gotta start ’em young) but I think our cats have had a bigger impression on her. The other day when prompted to say “Bye, Aunt Marti” she said “Bye, Aunt Kitty!” I couldn’t ask for a better downstairs neighbor.