An Enchanted Kitchen


Article taken from Issue #32 || Autumn 2015
Print || Digital

When The Art of the Home blogger and professional muralist Dawn-Marie deLara first set out to redesign her kitchen, in all its former “yellow plastic glory,” she didn’t anticipate transforming it into the enchanting indoor garden you see here, all through the magic of paint and wallpaper. We first came across Dawn-Marie’s charming space on Pinterest, and fell in love. Who wouldn’t want to sip a cup of tea in a room as charming as this, especially as the air begins to chill and winter fast approaches? Below, Dawn-Marie gives us a few tips for our own fairy tale (kitchen) transformations. For more, check out her blog at

The secret to painting surfaces like vinyl and plastic laminate is oil-based bonding primer. Don’t try anything easier or faster if you really want it to last.

To protect any painted surface, topcoat with PolyCrylic, made by Minwax, in satin finish for most things, gloss for faux marble (like the countertops here).

Murals can be painted with artists’ acrylics, craft store bottled acrylics, or leftover wall paint if you have the right colors. It’s essentially all the same. Clear coat is only necessary in kitchens, steamy baths, and places frequently rubbed by grimy hands.

The backsplash is troweled on joint compound (over primer), decorated with joint compound piped through a pastry bag. Don’t be surprised if it cracks a bit as it dries. Just rub in more compound to fill the cracks. Once dry, give it a base coat of paint, glaze on the colors, and top with PolyCrylic.

If you need to clear coat a trompe l’oeil effect like I used on the floor tiles here, use a flat varnish available at specialty paint stores so there won’t be a solid reflection to reveal the “lie.”

When using embossed paintable paper on a ceiling (what I did here to create the “copper” ceiling effect), cut it into short lengths to avoid wearing long wet strips of paper on your head.

Article taken from Issue #32 || Autumn 2015
Print || Digital

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Enchanted Living Magazine is a quarterly print magazine that celebrates all things enchanted.