I guess ‘had our apartment painted’ is probably a more accurate statement since all I did was choose the colors, convince my husband, contact the painter, get a price quote, research the kinds of paint, second guess my color choices, schedule the painter, have Sen Express buy the paint (which wound up requiring two paint stores and one hardware store), take everything off the walls and move furniture, keep the kids out of all the fun paint buckets and other ‘toys’ and then finally… love it.

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That’s not to say that it turned out as I had pictured. Somehow the colors I chose all seem a bit purplish, but I’m hoping they come off as ‘daring, bold choices!’ and not accidental mauve.

I had been debating whether or not to paint for several months. On the one hand, our original off-white color was fine. It was fine. (Like oatmeal… or bananas that are too mushy to enjoy but not mushy enough to justify tossing.) Also painting isn’t free, believe it or not, and we’ve already invested quite a bit to get this penthouse in shape.

But the things we’ve spent money are were functional, like a pump so we could have water and iron security bars to keep us safe. These are things that make a place livable, but not a home. I want our home to be a place where we can rest, relax and enjoy being. I want it to be an escape from the rest of life outside. As a wife and a mom (and even just for myself!), I enjoyed taking on this purple-tinged challenge.

Here’s what I learned:

– Darker colors make a room feel cooler, more cave-like. In Dakar, this is a very desirable thing!
– Accent walls are harder to pull off than I thought. Mine are more like ‘slight variation’ walls.
– Darker colors make white bathroom and kitchen tiles seem brighter and cleaner. #score
– Seigneurie Soytex matte satiné paint is beautiful. It costs more for a reason.
– Repainting is a great way to make the place you live feel more like YOUR home. Totally worth every centime. (And you can tell your husbands I said that. ‘Cause they’ll listen to me, right??)