Friday, September 20, 2013

Dining Room Chair Re-Do

I love my farmhouse table and bench (tutorial here) but I've been wanting to add a  few more chairs for awhile now. My husband really wanted captains chairs for the ends of the table (something with arm rests), but I had trouble finding just the right fit so when I found these heavy, solid wood chairs at a thrift store we compromised because these were just too cool to pass up.  The story was they came as part of a large bunch of furniture from an estate and I happened to walk in just was they were being set out for sale... score one for me!!!  I love it when that happens!!!

The floral tapestry seats were not my style, but the rest of the chair was in great shape and had tons of really cool character.

And the best part... after a discount they were $12 a piece, so naturally I bought all four.

After taking out the four corner screws underneath the seat, I popped off the cushion, gave everything a wipe down, lightly sanded a few nicks and dings and then spray painted the entire chair with flat black paint. 

Then with a little sand paper I rubbed it along the edges and along the scroll details to lightly distress the wood.

Then a coat of dark Annie Sloan wax, I know I've said this before but this step is really worth the small amount of time it takes to apply.  This wax is amazing and really finishes a project, I ALWAYS use it!

I also love how flat black turns out on wood, especially if you plan to distress it.  To me something really shiny even if it's distressed just doesn't have that old rustic look I love, but that's just my option paint whatever color and sheen you LOVE.

Now for the seat.  For the first one I sat for what seemed like forever with plyers and a flat screwdriver and pulled out every single darn (I would rather use a not so lady like term here) staple on the underside of the seat, it felt like a death sentence and I immediately began questioning my plan to do four chair... maybe one would be good enough??? Not willing to give in to my lazy half, I figured instead I would find a way to work smarter not harder and as you can see by the seats towards to bottom of the stack, instead of taking out the staples I used an exacto knife to cut right up next to those staple, removing the fabric without messing with those awful staples. The little strip of the previous fabric and the one million staples will be under the seat and no one will see it... so don't tell, deal?? :)

For my new seats I chose the always affordable and my go to fabric, canvas drop cloth.  For less than ten bucks at Walmart in the paint section you can get a huge drop cloth and have enough for several projects.  I love that is has the rustic look of burlap without the messy fuzz or scratchy feel. 

To attach I cut four squares larger than the seat, set each seat on the square upside down and using a staple gun and pulling tightly I stapled the down the two opposite sides leaving the corners free, turned and tacked down the two other sides then went back and carefully tucked and folded the corners and stapled them in place as well.  I'm no upholstery expert I just pull and tuck until it looks smooth.

To finish flip the cushion back over, set it on the now dry chair and tighten the corner screws.

I love how they turned out!

I put one at each end of the table to go with my other flat black distressed chairs and DIY wood bench and then left the other two alongside my buffet that I painted green last year and adore (tutorial here).  It's easy access if we need extra seating or if I get a wild hair and want to move the bench and just use chairs.  You never know when I girl might just need a change.

It was such a simple, inexpensive project and I hope it inspires you to tackle a project of your own.


Monday, September 9, 2013

Reclaimed Wood Topped End Table

I'm in the process of completely redoing our master bedroom and because of this overhaul, which includes a reclaimed wood headboard (stay tuned ;) and a refinished desk that will serve as my bed side table (tutorial also coming up :) I didn't have room for both the older end tables I had and they no longer seemed to "go" with my new more masculine, rustic, western idea so I went thrifting for an alternative for my husbands side of the bed.

Working with a limited budget I couldn't really find what I wanted so I decided to try to make this $6 wood end table into something that would work.  It's solid wood which is what I wanted, pressed board stuff in my opinion just isn't worth the hassle.

The end table is pretty plain, nothing too special about it, but it has potential. The one draw back was a crack in the top.  I thought I could just fill the crack and paint over it.  But once I got it home I realized the entire crack was actually broken off and nailed back on from the underside.  Bummed I figure I would just chalk my mistake up to a $6 loss, but then I looked closer and realized that the top piece was only attached with a few screws so I took out the screws and got rid of it and am so glad!!!!  The reclaimed wood I used instead worked so much better and made this "plain jane" piece into something way more interesting and unique.  I love it when those mistakes actually work out :)

With the top piece off I spray painted everything black.  I like to paint the inside and outside of drawers as well, I think it makes everything look more professional and finished even when you open the drawers instead of just having pretty fronts and a splatter painted mess inside.

Now for the red, this is just some acrylic craft paint that I had on hand and a cheap brush.

Just slap on the red to the drawer fronts and the base, giving it a quick coat. Don't worry about covering all of the black because you want some of the black to show through. 

While everything is drying, you can move on to the top.

My friend is remodeling her house and she graciously gave me a couple of old weathered boards.  They had great chippy white paint and lots of character so I measure and cut five pieces of the board with my trusty little jig saw, leaving just a little bit extra on each end to hang off the edge.  Because the boards widths didn't measure out perfectly across the top I used three pieces in the middle that where the original board width and then the two outside pieces I cut in half to fit. To help hold the boards in place I used a line of wood glue along the top of the end table then placed the boards on top and weighted them down to help the glue seal.  After about an hour I used my drill to drill small pilot holes all the way around the edge where the boards and the edge of the table top meet, and then went back and secured the boards to the top with small black screws.  

To finish it off, I sanded the edges to even up any spots where my cutting wasn't super straight and then gave everything a quick coat of black craft paint.  I had originally thought I would stain the top, or leave the chippy white paint as is, both great options, but for this with the red and black I decided the black would tie everything in, but still give a rustic look and match the great inexpensive knobs I found at Hobby Lobby.  

Not too shabby for six bucks and a little paint, huh???

I can't wait to show you the rest of the room re-do... so stay tuned!!!!

In the meantime, go save some tossed aside piece of furniture and make it new again!!  It is a pretty great feeling :)


Monday, September 2, 2013

Homemade Frozen Cookie Dough

First, thank you to those who have hung with me and this little blog this summer despite my lack of posts.  I promise I have been busy with projects!  The ever present streak of paint in my hair and on every piece of clothing I own is proof, but after the sanding, painting, messing and wrestling the kiddos, actually blogging about it at the end of the day loses out to sleep every time.  But as a thank you and a promise that there are some good projects coming, I thought we should indulge our sweet tooth.  I mean there is never a reason not to do that right???

This is no ground breaking idea, but it is one that I never thought to do until a friend recommended it to me and I am hooked.  In our house chocolate chip cookies are king!!!  They are my hubbies favorite and he seems to always request them at the most random times when that is the last thing I want to do.  So when my friend told me she makes a big batch freezes them in pre-measured balls and then always has them on hand I thought... GENIUS!!! 

So I did just that, I usually use the basic cookie recipe on the back of the toll-house bag plus lots of extra vanilla, but use any recipe you like.  Then use a cookie scoop and portion our your cookies on a sheet tray, packing them in as tightly as possible without touching.  Then slide this bad boy into the freezer for a few hours so that the dough starts to freeze in the ball then when you transfer them to zip lock freezer bags they won't stick together.

Finally, put this bag of goodness far back in the freezer, hidden from view so no one finds your stash.  Then when your husband wants cookies at 10:30 at night, or your get an intense NEED for chocolate (basically every day in my word) all you have to do is turn on your oven pop a few on a baking sheet, add a couple minutes to your normal baking time and presto you have fresh, delicious, hot, homemade cookies without the dirty dishes.

Another plus, if you only make a few at a time you aren't tempted to eat half a dozen in one sitting like me... on the other hand that oven does re-heat pretty quickly if you decide you NEED just a few more :)


Sunday, September 1, 2013

Under Bed Distressed Drawers Become Rolling Shoe Storage

As a parent you hope that you instill in your children good qualities, like kindness, honesty, humility, those are still a work in progress in our home, but shoe hoarding seems to be something we've got figured out!!  Embarrassing, I know and it is all my fault, but little girls shoes (and big girls for that matter) are so darn cute!  But what is not cute is the heap that all those cute little shoes end up in making finding a matching pair in a hurry nearly impossible, so I took an idea I saw on pinterest to reuse old drawers and added a little rustic flare and we LOVE them!

These drawers are left over from the dresser TV stand I made a few months ago (tutorial here).  The fronts were already ivory, so I just quickly brushed some off white paint on the rest of the drawers, inside and out.

Since my little girls room is turquoise and red, (or at least that is the end goal if i ever get her bedding finished), I brushed a little turquoise on the fronts and along the top edges of the drawers where I thought I would distress.

Now for the red, I covered all areas with it.  But since it's going to get a good distressing this doesn't have to be perfect just slap it on.

For the finishing touches I distressed the drawers with some sand paper, covered them both in dark wax and added some cute star knobs from Hobby Lobby. Finally the wheels, I actually screwed these on before painting just to make sure they would fit under her bed but you could do them at any point.  These were the smallest wheels I could find at Home Depot, they are easy to attach with a few small screws.  Make sure that you get the fixed wheels not the swivel or caster wheels, just really basic back and forth is all you need.

Pretty cute huh?

Roughed up and rustic just the way we like it.

These drawers solve our shoe storage problem...

they are adorable...

and super easy to get things in and out.

Now my turn to pair down my shoes to fit under my bed.  Who am I kidding... like that's ever gonna happen ;)

So while we work on those other far more important things (kindness, honesty, humility.. see above) at least we'll be able to find two shoes that match.