Survival Tip #165: Paint the plunger.
The handle anyway. It’s probably advisable to leave the rubbery part alone. But the wooden handle? Why not help it along a bit? Maybe it still has the remains of a price tag sticking on it somewhere. Maybe it’s a bit dusty and little used, but it lacks a cabinet for hiding away in inside a tiny apartment. Get a bit of sandpaper and a bit of paint and brighten the sucker up a bit. Ditto anything else that needs cheering.
If you’ve been reading for awhile, you already know that I consider white paint to be the Wite-Out of adulthood. Am I revealing my age? (33, for inquiring minds.) Does anyone even use Wite-Out anymore? Regardless of color, when I paint utilitarian objects it’s to achieve a bit of calm, a bit of cohesion, to encourage a bit of a disappearing act. But if bedazzling is more your speed, then of course go for it. Rhinestone encrusted toilet plungers wouldn’t be my preference, but they might well be yours. The point is consideration, and identifying how particular objects contribute to the sum of your space.
Last week, as we waited for what felt like forever to be given the go-ahead to move back into our apartment, I busied myself with at least ten little projects. On nights after the kids were asleep, I snuck back upstairs to dabble with a paint brush. What I was fixing weren’t glaring problems, really, but little things that grated. A liquor-box-turned-craft-box that I rescued from the trash years ago and never painted is now gray, and sits more quietly on a closet shelf we’re experimenting with leaving exposed, without a curtain to cover it. A wooden footstool we’ve used since long before we were married is now white, better to match the bathroom where it lives. The plunger, well, you already know.
In a week where I felt restless, tackling little projects helped me feel better, mostly because channeling my energy into change I could see felt better than waiting for change that I couldn’t. I eventually also decided to embrace a few projects of a slightly larger scale and greater budget (more on those to come) but where time or budget is lacking, this kind of dabbling can be just as affecting.
So, paint your plunger. Paint the wine crate if you’re sick of staring at it. Paint the wooden piece that keeps your toilet paper roll in place. Patch up the bit of paint you knicked while dragging your dresser across the floor. Here’s a friendly reminder that paint goes far and you won’t need much. If you lack a larger stash to steal from, or want to experiment with a particularly daring hue, you can always order a jar of sample paint and see how far you can stretch it.
For the curious:
I dipped into paint supplies I had for other projects for the objects you see here, Benjamin Moore’s Natura Paint in Simply White OC 117 (the same color as our walls) and Farrow & Ball’s Plummet (more on this to come!)