Do you remember the arrow maker?

I know there were about 2.75 of you reading the blog then, but if 2.75 of you remember, I was in awe.

You see, I am a hand talker.  With me there is a lot of pointing and hand-waving and excited little swoops to punctuate a really important point whenever I tell a story.  It has been hard for me to adjust to telling a story with simply pictures and words.

Without pointing.

Without hand-waving.

Without an extra swoop now and then.

So when I wanted to post on my painted bedroom floors.  I was in a quandary.

I had pictures. 

I had directions. 

But my post was sans arrows…..

Until now.

Did you see them?  Aren’t they so beautiful and pointy and arrow-like?  Isn’t it wonderful how I can clearly point out with arrows and text that I should have filled and sanded the joints of the plywood before I painted the floor?

But in my arrow excitement I am getting ahead of myself.  Too much hand-waving, I think.  More directions.

Painting a Plywood Sub-floor

(1)  Can you paint a plywood sub-floor?  Ummmm….yes.  Is it the best flooring decision we ever made….hands-down, yes.  We had vintage Berber carpet.  I wanted wood. 

New hardwoods = $3500

Painted plywood sub-floor = $120.00.

We want to send our four children to college, so the choice was clear.

(2)  We started by ripping up all the carpet, pad, and tack strips.

(3)  Then we cleaned the floor thoroughly.  I mean this.  Don’t skimp on the scrubbing.  You don’t want to be painting and find a dust bunny on your brush.

(please note that there are neither photos nor arrows for these steps because the floor was painted pre-blog and you know how I am about those before pictures)

(3)  There were several small spots that needed to be patched and sanded, but otherwise the sub-floors were in excellent condition.  I would recommend patching the joints in the sub-floor for a more unified look.

We did not.  We were in a hurry, so I told my husband those joints would give the floor character.


Here is a link to a much smarter blogger than I, who actually patched her floor.  She has pictures of her brilliant patching, too.

(4)  We primed the floor.  Please don’t skip this step, either.  We used an oil-based primer made for floors. 

(5)  We painted on the base coat with floor paint in SW Oyster White.  We painted the lighter color first. 

(6)  Then we then drew squares in with pencil placing them on the diagonal.  I really like the look of anything on a diagonal.  It makes squares look like they joined a country club.  Fancy.

(7)  We taped off outside every other pencil-drawn square with painter’s tape.  Each square is 21″ x 21.”  These squares are painted with the a darker color of floor paint, SW Rice Grain.

*sigh* ….just look at those arrows.

(8)  After it was dry.  We sealed it all with two coats of water-based polyurethane.

(9)  $120 later we had new floors and could still send our children to college.

Disclaimer:  I am not a professional floor painter.  This is how we did it.  I know professional painters everywhere are probably cringing and could give you much better advice.  Please follow directions on all products for drying times, useability and safety precautions. 

One last thing.

Pinned Image

I am a mere amateur with my squares.

Roeshel is a true professional.  This is a painted floor

Not a rug. 

A floor.

I know.  Seriously.

Pinned Image

Here’s another Roeshel creation.


Almost makes me want to line-dance to Achy Breaky Heart. 


Painted Porch Rug for Blog 3 (600x450) (2)

And for squares with a twist, check out this painted porch.



She’s a genius.

She has a painted porch and her children are probably going to graduate school.  🙂

PS  If you want more ideas on painted floors check out my pinterest board.

PSS  If you are over painted floors and want to aim a little higher, check out this post on painted ceilings.

PSSS  I am sharing this idea here and here and at Kim’s.