My son really wanted a change from his bedroom. No more mountains that I painted when we first moved in. He wanted an outer space room in the worst way, and since his walls were torn up from the slew of wall art he hung on the regular, I was up for the change as well.
I sampled and studied my paint book for days and days trying to find the perfect dark blue shade that would really be a great backdrop for all the little ideas I had to add to his space themed room. I landed on Sherwin Williams Salty Dog and as I painted, I saw just how perfect it was. A bright blue in the natural light (see above photo) and then a deep space blue (see photo below) when the curtains are closed.
BUT for a little boy that is scared of the dark in the worst way, painting all the walls a dark blue only made his room darker with each paint stroke. I quickly realized that for his size of room and the lack of natural light coming in from his one window, this room needed something extra to brighten it up. Midway through this project, I had to call an audible and change up my plan, and it ended up being the very best change possible. Don’t you love it when that happens?!
Let’s get to the details of how I transformed my son’s walls to a beautiful, galaxy filled night sky using some kids craft paint brushes, old sponges, and leftover white paint! A simple process that you just can’t get wrong. No templates, no plan, but absolutely beautiful results…and that’s coming from the furthest thing from an artist! 🙂
For the base color, I chose Sherwin Williams Salty Dog. It’s a beautiful, sophisticated navy blue that doesn’t show any purple undertones, which was very important to me. It’s a deep, bold color that was the perfect backdrop to a night sky. I had to do two coats of it to fully cover the previous mountain ranges and the remaining walls since they were such a lighter color before.
After my two coats, I mixed a ratio of 3:1 Salty Dog and leftover Sherwin Williams Snowbound in a small cup. That’s the white color I had on hand, but you can use whatever white you have at your home for this. I then dipped my sponge lightly in the mixture and dabbed it on a paper towel to get off the excess.
With a quick motion, I dabbed the sponge on the walls forming a cloud shape any way that I felt looked good. I worked in a small section of about 3′ x 3′ so I was certain that the paint wouldn’t dry before I was happy with the outcome. I took a second dry sponge and rubbed it along the paint and blended it in more, brushing some out more along the edges. That second sponge does the work of making the cloud look wispier.
I created some clouds larger, some smaller. Some with long tails and some more circular. I left large gaps in between some, leaving large gaps where you saw a lot of the Salty Dog background color, and others I left closer together. There was no rhyme or reason to how I created the clouds and certainly no template to follow. I would occasionally step backwards to access how it looked and make some darker or larger if I saw it needed a change.
* To darken them a bit more, I took a roller and did a light roll in Salty Dog and rolled it quickly over each of the clouds to add a little darkness to some areas of the clouds. You could skip this step by adding a little more dark blue to your paint mixture and making your clouds darker from the beginning. This is simply what I did and it worked for me, but I bet I could have skipped it if I would have just made the mixture darker in the first place. *
You can watch the whole process on my Instagram. I’ve posted the Reel below that shows me doing the painting, and be sure to check out my Instagram Stories to see all I shared about the process for help!
Again, there is no template for this. It’s a feeling as you work. You don’t have to stress about this one. Areas I thought were going to be worse looking than others ended up looking amazing as it all came together.
Have a drip of white paint drop on the wall, make it a star! Have a few stars that didn’t dot well? Make it a larger star! Don’t stress as you work. There is no symmetry or rhyme or reason to space, so why make your room so symmetrical and perfect? Embrace the imperfection and be amazed as it all comes together!