From Rough Vanity to Sweet Nightstands

I have had many projects planned and with my recent push to get the garage cleared out, I’ve finally gotten some long overdue furniture projects completed. And took the time to take the necessary photos as well.

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This piece I picked up a while back at a thrift store. I had gotten the two sections separated and that’s where it stayed for quite a few months. I actually was able to get a special boost from completing the outdoor bench from school desk chairs, as it provided me with the two additional legs that I needed for each cabinet.

Once I attached the legs, I got a whole new energy to complete the project. Taking a queue from the existing appliques, I glued appliques to the drawer fronts – initially to hide the previous hardware holes – and found the perfect glass knobs.

I then did a quick sanding of both cabinets and legs and launched into the priming and painting. I used a beautiful shade of off-white, more like a creamy vanilla color. With a couple of coats, the cabinets had a beautiful finish, but something was missing.

I had this unique spray paint leftover from working on the carousel horse (soon to be showcased) that had a glimmer of pearl glitter and using that over-sprayed both cabinets. It was just the trick. I attached the knobs and the piece was set.

I am thinking that this would be a perfect compliment to any little girl’s room, couldn’t you just imagine these flanking a big canopy bed?

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One more project down and only a few hundred to go! JK!

julie

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Forever in Blue Jeans

So, I’ve finished (for now) cutting all the blue jeans collected into three inch strips. I had set aside all the remaining pieces for making jean quilts. I’ve been working up the courage to start the rag rug… for whatever crazy reason, I always seem to go overboard when putting together the materials necessary for a project. Based on the tutorial I saw online for the rug, I now estimate that the amount of material that I have put together, I think I will probably end up with a forty foot diameter rug! I don’t know what it is that always makes me overestimate everything, but it seems that every project I work on, I do this.

DSCN4264This is the strips I’ve made… this has got to be the result of at least a hundred pairs of jeans and then some. I pick up pairs of jeans and just the denim material where ever I go, and recently procured a bunch when I picked up all that material free from CraigsList. And it was only recently that I started saving the back pockets – and I now have more than 100 pairs – so, I know that there were more pairs of jeans than those.

I made a “test” rug using 1 inch strips, that did not pan out too well. However, I think that fact that it was smaller was part of the problem. I need to fold the three inch strips into itself, so that the rough edges are hidden. I have been considering doing the folding and sewing it closed that way, but just haven’t decided.

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Anyway, I sat down and just started sewing the denim scraps. At first, it was just to get an idea of how well it would work, but after a while, I just got lost in it. I started watching Alfred Hitchcock’s 1950’s series and kept sewing. I was working with 7″ cotton squares as a starting point. On and off sewing over the past week or so, and I’ve finally made my way through the majority of the denim scraps. I didn’t want to make any squares with too many seams, the denim gets thick quickly and I know longarms don’t love to hit those seams where the material is thicker than four layers or so. I decided to make the squares as simple as possible and to keep those intersecting seams to a minimum.

IMG_6897Yesterday, I used the last really good piece of denim and stacked them and did a count.

IMG_0296That’s 422! At 10 x 10 squares – about 70″ x 70″, that would make at least four quilts! I was thinking about working with some colored denim – red, I think – as a medallion pieces and then placing the blue denim squares on point around it.I briefly considered double sided quilts, but then I would be right back to the problem of thickness and seams. And that each quilt would weigh like a hundred pounds! Ha!

Now that I’ve used up the scraps, however, leaves me with trying to finish up my other projects before surgery. Just three weeks now before the scheduled date and I’ve still a handful of projects to complete in the garage. I am making headway on them, but the temperatures in the 20’s have made it a bit cold to be working in the garage. It should be a bit warmer today though.

The dresser and the nightstands sold quickly, within a day of posting them. Yeah! My foyer is getting emptier although I still seem to have the red desk. Even before I painted it, it was one of those pieces that just doesn’t seem to appeal to anyone. It is a great little piece, and I have lowered the price to the point where I won’t make any money on it. I wish I had a place for it myself, as it is beautiful, but alas, I do not.

And I am just waiting on the pneumatic stapler that I ordered online so that I can finish up my upholstery projects. More denim! And that should clear the final pieces from the foyer and the garage. It should be simple at that point to re-arrange the final stuff in the garage to get two cars back into the space initially designed for cars!

I’ve got a couple of small project lined up to keep me busy while I am working on the last couple of big projects. Seems like it is both taking forever and time is just whizzing by while I wait for this upcoming surgery! And in the same way, I am both excited and terrified about it!

julie

Pink Ombré: Can You Stand More?

I don’t care how many times I do the pink ombré paint scheme, I still love it. And so do you, judging on how quickly the pieces sell and the comments and reviews they get!

So, in case you’re new to the blog, or haven’t been here in a while, I am in the mode of completing projects without starting any new ones. In about three weeks, I will have the first of two knee surgeries  a week apart and one thing that will be important is that I have unencumbered access around my house – be in a walker or crutches. Either way, as I completed six to eight weeks of physical therapy, I need to make sure that I can safely navigate my house. And all these projects stacked up in my dining room, my kitchen, my living room and specifically the garage do not allow safe access. So, I am working diligently to complete them all.

This weekend I was able to complete two more projects. The first is this long dresser. Originally I wanted to turn it either into two smaller individual dressers or turn it into a bench with drawer space. Sort of like this:

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However, with the completion of the pew, I no longer have the space for such a piece of furniture. Although it would sell quite easily, I may try to do this later next year.

Instead, this dresser:

00c0c_aT2b4lrh71c_300x300became this:

DSCN4282Yesterday those adorable flower petal handles finally arrived via eBay. The Kid took the time to put them on last night so that I could take photos and write about them today.

I also used those same knobs on this project:

DSCN4285These pieces actually started life as:

IMG_0163This sweet little vanity was purchased with the hope of becoming a piece for my master bedroom makeover, but, well, life got in the way here too. I think this would be a great compliment to the four poster bed I did a while back. The drawers are the same colors as each post. 🙂

DSCN4242I had primed these cabinets in white, which I think were okay with the pale pink color that it was painted, but I really do need to invest in more primer for red and the darker shades of pink. I am a firm believer in using the right tools and supplies for a superior end product.

Another project that I was able to complete since I had the painting supplies out, is this little holder. I do a lot of faux stained glass painting and find that having the bottles upside down to keep the material at the tip is handy. So, I whipped out some more paint stir sticks and just sort of roughly laid them out to where I thought I needed them around the bottles. Then I drilled the holes large enough to allow the cap to sit securely without being wobbly or too tight. Then it just got a coat of red paint.

I keep threatening, but soon I am going to write a post just about projects that I made using paint stir sticks. Dang, those are handy!

DSCN4272So, here is a view of what’s left in the garage. I had to order a new pneumatic stapler to finish the bench (forefront) with denim cover and there is the other large chest of drawers. I am going to keep this one for my guest bedroom… it is needed to hold some of the specialty fabrics that I have no room for in my sewing room. Then, that leaves only the Scrabble table and one more bench (made from a headboard). This should should pretty much clear out the garage and I will be able to get my sports car bedded down for the remainder of winter. We finally had snow here in the Kansas City area and my little red guy is covered in the white stuff.

Of course, that is the garage! Now, if all my pieces sell that would take care of the foyer too. But I have projects going on in my sewing room too! But that should take care of getting safely around the house anyway!

A few more photos to close out this post:

julie

 

Priming, priming and priming.

Today, The Kid made an offhand comment to me while I was working in the garage. Something to the effect of why I was going to so much work on the pew.

Today, after finishing the sanding, expanding the slots for the bench, the gluing, the screws with the countersunk heads, the supports, the trim… I prepared to prime the bench. His comment was innocent enough, after all, this piece is for me. Why put so much work into it?

Good question. Many people would look for shortcuts. There is a paint that is a primer and paint in one. Why worry about sanding off the old paint or varnish when you’re just going to paint over it? Why not just throw a few extra nails into it and slap some paint onto it?

I was raised at the feet of a master. Nothing my Dad had ever built had been viewed by the masses or sold for money, but they were carefully and artfully crafted and loved by the recipient of the gift. He believed in what he did…if it was worth doing, then it was worth doing right.

So, I spend the time and do all the steps. And hopefully, the work and treasures I build will be around a long time down the road. From starting with great pieces to using high quality products, I hope that they, too, become treasures to those who own them eventually. And why wouldn’t I put the time and effort into something being made for me?

Today’s work was a matter of, as I said earlier, priming. Simple enough, I guess, just takes time. I always use Kilz branded products and I use quality tools – brushes and rollers. Nothing really exciting today, but you can see the progress:

DSCN4240The pew primed.

DSCN4242The vanity that was taken apart to become night stands are now primed:

DSCN4241And the drawers to the nightstands are primed.DSCN4248I also made a couple of throw rugs from a hardy upholstery material that I found in my fabric stash (see the previous post for info).

After I washed the fabric to remove sizing, I cut the piece in half. Then glued non-slip rug material on the back. Dried overnight and now they will adorn the laundry room and the kitchenette in the basement.

DSCN4249You know me, I can never sit around and not do something! I have a couple of little projects that I’ve also been working on, more paint stir stick projects, that I want to write up in a single post. Thank heavens Home Depot lets me take as many as I need!

We’re making progress! Oh, and I think I’ve sold my dining room table and chairs set! I am so excited!

julieDisclaimer

Pink, Pink, Pink and More Pink! (Can You Stand A Little More?)

A few more pieces of pink. I hope you can stand it. Just a little more.

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I repainted the night stand (shown on the most left in the photo above) to match the other night stand. The two dressers were project pieces – the intent of six drawer dresser when I picked it up was to separate it into two smaller dressers, but I think The Kid and I were just getting tired of the work and opted to sell it as originally designed.

Here are some more photos:

We did take the smaller dresser and add the trim around the base and the applique to give it a little more oomph, but structurally it is a great piece.DSCN3722

DSCN3607An update to the vanity: I also took an old wooden chair, cut it down, painted it and put the softest pink fabric (I am always amazed at how soft some of the new blended fabrics are!) on the seat and added it to the vanity. Perfect!

I am getting so bad about not taking the “before” photos as of late. I have one more dresser that is almost completed, and after that, I think I will work with something else for a while. Do you ever get tired of working with a single design/color scheme? I think I am there with the ombré pinks. Even though I have a lot of pink paints left, I think it will go on the back burner for a while.

There is one last piece to debut tomorrow and I already have one furniture project well underway. And I’ve been doing some more beadwork. I also have (more than) enough denim to start working on the rag rug. Oh and to upholster three chairs (with denim)! I am going to start with one and see if I can do it and if I enjoy it. I may just re-give away the other chairs if I find I don’t have a knack for upholstery.

Okay, time to ice the knees and enjoy my Sunday!

julie

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