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Storage Bench Snack


This little beauty was dropped off at my house at random, and it sure needed some love.

The back corners were pretty damaged because, what dog doesn’t love a good wooden snack?

I was able to rebuild one corner with wood filler and some sanding…

Wood Filler

 

Smoooooth

The other side was SOOOO rough that I decided to just cut the whole thing off. I really like the metal accent bars, so to maintain continuity I cut the other side apart, glued on legs and screwed it back where it use to be.

All apart

I had to sand down the sides where I cut because they were a little choppy. Then I stained all the light wood and wood filler. Finally I used glossy polyurethane to make it shine shine shine.

Sandy Sand Sand

Hmmm...

Once the wood parts were finished it was time to move on to the bench. I took off the old upholstery and put down new cotton and fabric. I didn’t have any thick padding on hand so I literally pieced together pieces of batting (because I am way to cheap and lazy to go to the store.)

Batting

And the results…

 

Done

Done!

Cat

Good thing cats don’t chew on wood… do they?

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Art Vanity


My daughter just turned three on June 22, so I am currently in Florida, woohoo! Tropical Depression Debby isn’t going to put a damper on my fun! It will, however, put a damper on long blog posts. For the rest of the week (after THIS post) all my posts will be short and sweet, in a series called “An End to my Odds,” which basically is the random small stuff around the house that I have Space-Lifted but never posted.

So without further ado, here is my vanity update in images. Enjoy!

This is how the vanity began. It's super cute, but a bit on the small side.

This is how the vanity began. It’s super cute, but a bit on the small side.

This is how the vanity began. It's super cute, but a bit on the small side.

Here it is with the batwings out.

I disassembled all of the moving parts and primed the whole thing.

I disassembled all of the moving parts and primed the whole thing.

Then I painted it a really ugly “Navajo White” and accented it by painting the stool light blue and (under the advisement of a friend) covered it with orange fabric.

As you can see this was an ugly mistake. I couldn't even find pictures of the vanity, so I must have known it wouldn't stay Navajo White for very long. As a side note: Never take advice when it comes to style (especially if you already have a plan in your head) because you know what you're doing and you shouldn't ever second guess yourself...unless it's for safety reasons....in that case, wear a helmet.

As you can see this was an ugly mistake. I couldn’t even find pictures of the vanity, so I must have known it wouldn’t stay Navajo White for very long. As a side note: Never take advice when it comes to style (especially if you already have a plan in your head) because you know what you’re doing and you shouldn’t ever second guess yourself…unless it’s for safety reasons….in that case, wear a helmet.

I had to do a little drawer repair as well. The Navajo White crackled and there were some pretty jacked up holes I had to fix with wood filler.

I had to do a little drawer repair as well. The Navajo White crackled and there were some pretty jacked up holes I had to fix with wood filler.

Next came Round 2. I disassembled the item again and spray painted it green and pink.

Next came Round 2. I disassembled the item again and spray painted it green and pink.

I used chalk board paint in the middle section of the table. I tried to pull the dividers up and realized that the dividers pulled up all of the fabric.

I used chalk board paint in the middle section of the table. I tried to pull the dividers up and realized that the dividers pulled up all of the fabric.

But I used that to my advantage and filled it in with fabric.

But I used that to my advantage and filled it in with fabric.

This is how it turned out. Because it is Olivia's art vanity, I let her paint the mirror herself. It may not coordinate with the rest of piece, but it's just perfect.

This is how it turned out. Because it is Olivia’s art vanity, I let her paint the mirror herself. It may not coordinate with the rest of the piece, but it’s just perfect to her.

I even screwed on a clip (that use to be attached to my work batch...hooray for free junk!) so she can display her pictures. That's right, this puppy is not just for chalk!

I even screwed on a clip (that use to be attached to my work badge…hooray for free junk!) so she can display her pictures. That’s right, this puppy is not just for chalk!

Happy Birthday

Maybe I didn’t get her a new doll or a sweet game for her birthday, but this gift was made with so much more love than anything I could ever buy!

Leafy Lights


Apparently I’ve been focused on lighting recently; from my tension lamp to my table lamp, I’ve done some pretty simple updates. This most recent one is a bit more complicated as I took my cue from Pinterest. I HATE saying that I got ideas from Pinterest because (as much as I like the site) I feel like it’s so cheap to copy ideas outright, especially when you know 500 other people are doing the exact same thing. Regardless, I always put my Space-Lift twist on things, but Project 1 and Project 2 are what inspired me.

I started with a piece of mirrored art that I bought at Family Dollar two years ago for $10; pretty reasonable for what it is.

Before

It was alright, but definitely lacking in the *Oomf* department.

First I opened up the back and popped out the mirror, which was fit to the back like a picture frame, and did a quick and dirty silver spray job.

Silver

Next I gathered some leaves, stuck them into place with double-sided tape, and sprayed it down with a calm blue.

Blue

When I pulled up the leaves, I thought the silver was too stark of a contrast from the blue, so I laid down a couple more leaves and sprayed around them with green. Once I was satisfied with the amount of green I added, I did a quick, light coat of the blue over the whole thing so it muted the green and silver a bit.

Fabric and Lights

Once all of the paint was dry I took it inside and hot glued purple and cream fabric to the back of the wood. Then I took some Christmas lights (LED lights would work best because they won’t get hot, but I used regular ones because I know I won’t have it on for long periods) and stapled them to the back. MAKE SURE NOT TO KNICK THE WIRES WITH THE STAPLES!

Finally it was time to display my lights! I was initially going to hang it on the wall, but I got lazy. THAT’S RIGHT! I can admit it. I got super duper lazy and decided not to (technically) finish.

The lights on the back were too bulky to allow for the lights to sit flush against the wall. I anticipated this and was prepared to build out the back with some scrap pieces of wood so it would be  a box full of lights, more than a piece of wood with lights behind it. Also I knew I would have a cord hanging from it and that isn’t sexy in the least. So I scrapped the whole “wall idea” and just set it out on the entryway piece by my door.

Glow

I know my new artwork doesn’t compensate for the ugly wallpaper that I haven’t gotten around to removing yet,

but you’ve got to start somewhere.

One Hat, Three Occasions


My mother recently bought my daughter, Olivia, a floppy, white hat. It would be perfect for Easter, except for the fact that it is completely lacking in the frills category. Everyone knows that Easter hats should rival Kentucky Derby hats! Even though I am not THAT good, I am good ENOUGH to kick it up a notch.

Supplies: Plain Hat.Hot Glue Gun.Handkerchief or Cloth Napkin.Ribbon.


Step 1: Start with the flower (because if you mess up, it’s not like you’ve already made room on the hat for it.) Take the fabric and make it into a long thin tube. I had cloth napkins that the sellers left so I just folded one into a triangle and started to roll it up into a skinny straw.

Step 2: Once you have it in a long strip, take one end and start rolling the tube into a spiral-ball from one end to the other. Once you have it halfway rolled, put a line of hot glue down the rest of the fabric then continue to roll. Once it’s all rolled up, put a final bit of glue to secure the end. So, yes, essentially it’s just a spiral, but once it’s in “hat context,” it totally looks like a flower.

Step 3: Set aside your spiral flower for now and bust into the ribbon. Just cut a long piece, hot glue all along the hat where it meets the bill (is it called a bill when it’s not a baseball hat?…or a duck?) Then place your ribbon to circle the hat, leaving some ribbon to trail at the end. Personally, I cut my ribbon ends to make one of those fancy little V’s, but you can just make a diagnal cut if you’d like….we’re not picky here.

Step 4: Place a huge gob of hot glue on the back of your spiral flower and then a bit on the hat in the location you’d like your flower. I put mine a little off center in the front, but if your a fan of symmetry then smack-dab in the middle is just fine too.

What I really love about this is that hot glue isn’t a permanent adhesive. In fact, if you pulled hard enough I guarantee you could rip this flower and ribbon right off in about 45 seconds. In some instances this could be seen as a bad thing, but not to THIS GIRL! Easter is one day a year, but this hat will fit for at least another 6 months. So once April 8th has come and gone, this ribbon and flower will also have come and gone. This hat can be re-ribboned and re-styled for our trip to the South in May, and probably again for our trip to Florida in June. From Easter hat, to southern belle topper, to a floppy beach hat. Three hats in one for only $6!

Let Me Stand Next to Your Fire


Just a real quick pick-me-up for drab fireplace gear! At very least you should have a poker and a grabber (no, those are definitely not technical terms), but they don’t always look so fun or chic. In fact, most of the time they look like this…

Not quit the utensils you imagine in those Nora Roberts novels where a sophisticated, yet ruggedly manly college professor entertains a beautiful, wayward traveler while he tends to his fire at his summer cabin where he hopes to commune with nature and write a few chapters in his book filled with deep thoughts and soulful feelings. Boy, I really get sidetracked don’t I?

In order to make my metal gear a bit more “Ooh La La,” I decided to unscrew the handles and toss a little primer and spray paint in their direction. I know that not all utensils are made with removable handles (though many are) you can still tape off the stems to isolate the area you’d like to paint.

Once the paint has dried you can spray a little clear sealer on just for the sake of it. I don’t foresee myself using these too rigorously in the near future, but I sprayed mine juuuuuuust in case I decide to start getting cozy near a fire on a bear skin rug.

I hate to wrap this up so abruptly, but this is truly a quick, simple project that livens up your tools without stealing your focus by it’s garishness.

Just bright enough to work.

Entryway Peace


I finished my third piece for my vendor sale (that takes place in 6 days) and to follow suit with the second piece that I finished I decided not to sell it. I know, I know, what the heck am I going to sell?! Well that’s a good question. I love this new item, but I feel like it is too taste specific (my taste) and I don’t want to lug the big beluga in and out of the truck (possibly damaging it), just to have to load it back into it again. So this will just be a before and after photo at my booth, along with other before and after photos.

AND SPEAKING OF BEFORE AND AFTER PHOTOS….

This is what the “before” looked like.

It was in pretty decent shape; sturdy, solid and generally well made. Aside from the decorative moulding that once lined the top (indicated by the LACK of yellow paint) that fell off on it’s own, I really thought this whole item was salvageable. I had even diluted myself into thinking that I didn’t need to sand it. How nice would life be if I just painted over it and I could pat myself on the back? It would be super nice, but it’s also a super freakin’ daydream because the paint was crackling in a not so pretty way, even though the yellow was not crackle paint.

 

So I busted off (quite literally) the back of the unit and sanded the shelves and outside. I didn’t sand it down to bare wood, but enough to give me enough warm fuzzies and high hopes that my paint wouldn’t crackle too.

 

Then came the process that, oddly enough, took the longest; I had to choose the paint colors. I initially had the idea to do an ombre technique, but as I stared at the 12 paint cans in various shades and sizes I realized that none of my colors would allow for it. I had yellows and blues that could pass for a gradual shade progression, but I wasn’t in love with any of them. So I sat in my entryway with my paint surrounding me and mixed, matched, stared, contrasted, pored and thought. Finally I came up with a desirable palette.

Pretty nice right?

 

 

Then I decided that the piece on it’s own was pretty boring, so I had to spice it up a bit. I bought some long thin planks that were made to use on a lathe and decided to cut them to fit the width and used wood glue to adhere them to the board that I had pulled off the back. The unfinished wood (which gives a fun, casual, beach vibe) not only creates visual interest, but it also helps camouflage how badly I had beaten the backing when I was trying to remove it.

Once the glue dried, I painted the wood plank backing a very pale green, the outside of the piece grey, and the inside shelving an ambiguous light blue/slight green/vaguely grey color. Then I smoothed on 2 coats of rubbing polyurethane.

I put the hinged door back on the bottom, screwed in a new knob and added two white hooks to the side for coats, purses, scarves…you get the idea.

And this is the after!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I really love these calm but vibrant colors because they look so different depending on the angle and intensity of the light. However, there are a couple of things that are really taking away from the overall beauty of this piece in the pictures. One is that these were taken while the polyurethane was still wet so it looks a little streaky in photos, but now that it is dry it has all evened out. And the other issues are that my wallpaper is a pattern Laura Ingalls Wilder would love, my light switch face plates are practically medieval and my dingy linoleum looks like it has been through a stampede. Aside from all of that, my piece is the perfect start to what I hope will become a cottage chic entryway.

 

Table of Glass!


I’ve finally finished another piece! I know it seems like it has taken forever, but the issue lies more with me starting 3 pieces and then making gradual progress on them all (I don’t recommend this in the least, but I blame it on my self-diagnosed A.D.D.)

My table made a transformation that I never really anticipated. I love it, my mother isn’t a fan, and Kyle hates the fact that the resin treatment I used has ruined our carpet. But I live in Michigan, which means projects can only be done outdoors about five months of the year (at best!) and sometimes that leads to resin trickling into the carpet and sticking to it like 44-year-old chewing gum… but I digress. Either way, onto the main attraction!

Before!

Kyle’s mom gave us this table over a year ago when we needed it in our rental. Honestly, we had outgrown it’s sharp edges and garish color, but I knew I could make it something awesome. So I disassembled the two layers and chiseled off the top layer of veneer to give me more even tops to play with. The I sanded the tops and legs.

I sanded the legs smooth and filled the cracks with wood filler. Once the filler dried I sanded the legs again and painted them grey. Next, the table tops got a boat load of attention. I painted those with the same grey, filled the holes on the top with pieces of clothesline (anything could have worked, just to block the resin treatment from dripping into the holes) and taped off the sides with a mixture of bathtub caulking strip (I know it sounds a little “makeshift” at best, but I had extra laying around and it worked well), painter’s tape and electrical tape. The outcome looked like a Frankenstein monstrosity, but it was necessary prep for the resin.


I used this resin and glass paint to get the desired affect. I followed the directions on the box (I would like to say that I followed them to the letter, but I know I didn’t stir long enough.) Regardless, once I mixed it I used white glass paint and dumped it into the mixture before I dumped it on the tabletops. The resin pours like honey so I had to spread it out with a sponge brush to make sure all areas of the wood were covered. Once the white resin had settled, I shook up my design by plopping lilac glass paint on top of the wet resin and just smeared it around haphazardly. I didn’t have a real plan, but luckily this was the type of project where a plan was not 100% necessary. Once it dried I was left with what looked like two slabs of psychedelic marble.

Then it was just a matter of sanding the edges where the resin hardened into odd shapes and jagged edges. I also sanded the sides where the resin had dripped down the sides and landed on the felt. …Which is where my ruined carpet comes in. You see, I put down felt to catch the spills, but I didn’t expect the spills to be so large that it would soak through the felt and harden to the floor. Well, my dear friend, it did. And it looks something like this.

Ick, I know, this is no good for my home decor (and for about 45 minutes it was really bad for my relationship) but damnit, sometimes risks have to be taken and mistakes have to get made! (And you didn’t even need to find those words of wisdom on Pinterest.)

My last order of business was to paint the sides of the table tops, varnish them and then varnish the table legs that I had previously painted. Finally, after all of that nonsense and messing about, I was able to put the legs back on and plop the small table back onto the big table. And this is how it turned out!

I would like to call this an overall win. It’s just like that old wedding saying “I’m not losing a carpet, I’m gaining a table.” Kyle on the other hand, may not find my logic so witty. Once again, wish me luck!

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