The Kid’s Room Re-do, Nearing the Finish Line

Wow, this has been a very productive day. I not only sold three of my dresser make-overs yesterday, but sold three more pieces today. And one person who bought yesterday, emailed about having another piece done for her!

On top of this, we worked on the Kid’s bedroom today, or to be more exact, on his bed. I had a specific look in mind and missing just the ‘perfect’ bedding, I think we got it done today. First, let me apologize that, again, I didn’t get enough pictures. I did better than usual, though… I’m trying!

The bed is essentially three parts: the narrow headboard, the wider side (right) board and then the L shaped frame on the left and bottom of the bed. We started by placing the head board against the wall and then placed the L-shape right up to it to give us the necessary height. It was then screwed into place.

The Kid’s room is fairly shy of electrical outlets and I knew the bed would go across one, so I put in a flat-head extension cord so that we could still use at least on outlet. I plugged it in and then just set it aside.

I almost forgot to tell you about the feet on the L-Shaped unit… I had been looking for something that would give me a relatively short rise, but everything I was seeing was either too feminine (like round or frilly) or too short or just way too expensive. Some were as high as $30 a piece, and I needed 3!

As the Kid and I were walking through Home Depot brainstorming, I caught out of the corner of my eye these lovely pieces. They are the newell posts for outdoor fencing and there were just three – enough for the project. And when I found the price, I couldn’t believe my eyes! They were only $2.99, so I got all three for less than a ten spot! Painted them black and they were ready to go.

Next we put up the long padded/tufted piece against the back wall. We struggled with this a little more, but in the end, we got it to work. Then it was just a matter of attaching the L-shaped piece to bed and the wall. Thankfully this wasn’t the prettiest installation, but most of it will be hidden by the mattress and/or the bedding.

Here it is after we screwed into place the cross pieces to support the mattress. We could have done without putting down a full sized board just resting the box spring on the boards or even just using slats, but I didn’t want to chance it. Luckily I had a full sheet of pressboard in the garage, which cut down nicely. That was screwed into place. This makes the bed more stable and less likely to push the the L-shape away from the headboards.

Here is the Kid finishing the job tacking the support board. What a great help! (Never complained once!)

From here it was just a matter of dropping the box spring and mattress into the frame.

And here we are with the bed made using his old linens. With everything that I have been doing, I haven’t had a chance to shop for new linens and a comforter. That is going to have to be something pretty spectacular considering how the room is turning out.

We moved his nightstand into place and added his lamp. I need to do posts with instructions on both of these pieces. I love how they turned out. Actually, I need to do a long post about how I did the leather covering and the tufting. Everything was done by me, spending countless hours with a staple gun and glue!

A little vacuuming, picking up and putting away tools and we started to move some of his computers & monitors back into the room and then we called it a good day done. I was actually able to get the trundle and mattress he has been sleeping on back in its place and straightened up the guest room.

A couple of quick shots of the desks, since it was already dark, I thought I would give it a try with taking better photos without the sunlight overexposing everything.

Excuse the mess, but as you can see, the room is still a ‘work in progress’, but at least I feel like we are making progress. The Kid gets to sleep in his own bed tonight – which is great – and I’ve got my sewing room (where I built his night stand) and guest bedroom (which housed everything while we were working on the room) cleared and back to useful states!

But mostly, I love that this is coming together for my son. He is such a joy and really likes to spend time with his Mom. I am enjoying ever minute together while he is still willing, but even better that at age 17, he is still the happy, well-adjusted boy that he is. I don’t know how I got so lucky to have such a great Kid come into my life.

We also had help in the form of our dog, Ashla. The feather mattress that used to be on the Kid’s bed was a queen sized that I cut down to fit on a twin. But with the new bed, he got a new feather mattress. And once the old one was dropped on the floor downstairs, the dog has laid claim to it! I may have to figure out how to create a soft cover for it for her.

Sorry about the quality of the photo, but I still had the memory card in the computer (and out of the camera), so I used my iPhone to snap this in very low light. I dragged the feather mattress into the office and just had to show you a picture of the world’s most pampered pup!

Well, thanks for dropping by. And Happy Crafting Y’All!

Playing ‘Catch up’!

It seems that the big projects always get the attention here. So, while we’re still in the midst of the big project of redecorating the Kid’s room, I thought I’d throw up a few of the smaller projects that have been skipped in the past month or so.

First up is this gorgeous rocker. I had originally picked this up thinking it would be great for my mom, so on nice days she could sit on her patio and enjoy the sunshine. Unfortunately, she didn’t love it as much as I did. :-(

I picked it up from the local Goodwill store and I couldn’t believe what awesome condition it was in. The seat and arms were a bit worn – this was obviously a piece that had been loved and used in the past – so structurally I didn’t have to do anything to it, but a bit of sanding and painting. I chose to do this with spray paint to get a nice, smooth finish and I used this dark blue/navy color. It was a pretty straight forward project although the dark paint required several/many coats of paint to get a nice even coverage.

Up next, is a small night stand. If you recall, I did a gray ombré dresser and sold it to a young man who after a couple of tries at getting furniture that he loved, finally settled on the piece I restored.

When we delivered it, he mentioned that he would be interested in a night stand if I had one. I told him I would keep an eye out for a piece. Well, I did find one and here it is completed (again, I forgot to take a ‘before’ photo):

I am constantly amazed by what a good paint job can do to a piece of “trash”. I live and die by the statement that one person’s trash is another person’s treasure.

On to another quick project, repainted a round mirror. It could be used to accentuate either of the gray ombré dressers or would work on its own.

One more to share with you. This one was pretty challenging with the spindles and curves of the chairs. Here is the before picture:

There is just something about this black paint that we’ve chosen for the Kid’s room. “Deep Space” black, Behr paints from Home Depot. I really wanted to try something unique on the table, by routing out the center of the table just deep enough to accommodate some glass tile. I was hoping to do something in shades of grey or perhaps white and blue and then paint the table top and chairs to match. Here are some tiles that I am considering:

But before I started working on the really nice table I purchased for this special treatment, I wanted to see how the paint would turn out. So, on with about six coats of my favorite black paint. It is really a pain to have to alternate positions of the chairs to be able to get every nook and cranny painted, especially when using a roller! I will probably work hard to avoid using roll on paint again and opt for spray paint for this type of application in the future.

Here is the final result:

I actually had one matching chair and one more that was very close to the same style. You really have to look close to noticed the difference.

And for your convenience, here is a ‘Before & After’ photo:

Today is Thanksgiving Day and I just wanted to take a moment to wish everyone a wonderful holiday and weekend. As one who wasn’t overly obsessed with holidays, the Kid and I are simply using the day to kick back and do some of our favorite things. And our dinner selection is our three cheese lasagna. It is made with ground turkey, so it sorta works out. :-)

So wishing everyone their version of a perfect Thanksgiving! And happy crafting y’all!

Another Dresser Transformation, From Blue to Pink Ombré

I am constantly on the prowl for nice pieces of furniture that would transform well into my favorite ombré paint style and I have done a ton of the pink. People just love the pink!

Here is a recent transformation:

I especially love when the piece has four or more drawers, it gives me the chance to use more shades on it. The base coat (same as the top drawer) is one of my favorite colors, a blush pink that is almost not pink. But it gives a great base to start.

The dresser was a bit beat up, but I knew it had “good bones”. It did need to have the top replaced , as it had some water damage and the wood was coming apart. Luckily, I had picked up a table (really I got it for the wonderful pedestal base) so I could use the top for other things. A nice, big piece of solid wood.

This was a pretty simple, straight forward project once I had the top replaced. That step was pretty easy, simply measured the top and cut, then routed the edges with a nice standard router bit. Then the usual: sanding, priming and painting. Because it was such a nice piece and had previously had only one center pull, I opted to go with the same single center pull. But I did want to make it a little “sweeter”, so I used glass knobs.

So, that was that. I’ve pretty much used up most of the pink paints, so I expect that this is the last one. I think I might have saturated my market with the ombré style, as these last couple of pieces have been slow to sell. I’d like to try something new, anyway.

Here is the ‘Before & After’ photos:

Pretty nice transformation, huh? Almost hard to tell it was the same piece. I wished that I was redoing my master bedroom in pink so that I could keep these pieces! But that has been dilemma from day one, what to do with all the art, recycled, upcycled and restore projects that I do!

Well, off to work on the Kid’s room. Thanks for stopping by.

And as always, Happy Crafting Y’All!

Kid’s Room Re-Do, Part 3 (More Progress!)

Work continues, albeit a bit slower than I would have wanted or expected. I am hoping that this weekend, we get a lot more done and get it completed over the Thanksgiving weekend.

The desk unit is in, done!

The idea was to create a two tiered work surface in his room to contain all his computer equipment. There is one surface that is positioned so that he can stand and work – this would be for the servers that rarely require much time once they’ve been setup and running. Just some maintenance and administration. It is positioned right next to his closet door, so he didn’t want to have to have a chair that would be constantly in the way and would also allow for the tall computer towers to have plenty of space and “breathing room” underneath.

On the other side of the wall, is the sitting space. He’s already been using this space… I think he likes it! :-) And in between, because the window is so low, is an area that provides storage and more surface space.

When I initially imagined this desk, it was going to look something like this:The wall has a very large window that dominates the space, only about 3 feet on either side and less than 22 inches to the floor. I could have chosen a different wall, but I did want to give him the advantage of the natural light. I hoped under the window to use those kitchen cabinets that usually are above the stove or refrigerator because I could get a height that would still allow me to get the counter on top of it. Then the pipe supports would extend through the top and go all the way to the floor. It wouldn’t actually support the counter, but would give the illusion of it.

Unfortunately the best price I could find – even with sales and coupons – was over a hundred dollars for two cabinets. Then one day in an outing to a computer recycling place, I discovered that they also have office furniture as well. And on this particular day, some of the furniture (those standing on end) were 90% off! Since I had already ordered the counters, we had a specific size that I had to work within and we went through every last one with a measuring tape. Finally we found one that, with some slight modification would work perfectly. The price? SIX DOLLARS! Because I believe in this place and was so happy with the service, I am going to give them some recognition. They are called The Surplus Exchange and you can find their website here.

So, we carted that heavy piece home and started working. We had to shorten it some to fit under the window but it was a minor alteration and it didn’t affect anything major, like drawers or doors. And then it got painted our favorite “Deep Space” black. It was awesome.

They we carted it up the stairs and into place. It all fit like a glove. We did have to alter the original plan to run the pipes down through the top, as the cabinet now was as long as the counter, but it’s okay, we just put the flanges on the top of the counter. Looks just as cool. No, cooler.

The Kid’s dad is actually a plumber, so he helped by putting together all the pipe supports. They actually do support the fronts of both work surfaces. I was able to get all the piping cut with the help of a friendly Home Depot associate (Hi Michael!) He used my rough dimensions to cut all the pieces and help me identify just what I needed from the vast selection.

Okay, so as it seems that no house, whether it been brand new or 100 years old (or 8 years, as mine is) there doesn’t seem to be a 90 degree corner in any room, so the desktops had to be careful wrangled into place. A minor amount of damage occurred, so I had a little wall repair completed and retouched the paints and had a little caulking to do with some small gaps between the tops and the walls. Barely noticeable now though.

The lights were also installed since last post. I found these at a local big box furniture store and was able to secure these lights for $9 each! I had to wait a couple of days for them to be shipped in from the warehouse, but that was okay. I still want to find different, more “industrial” looking shades, but the Kid says the standard ones are fine. I think he is just ready for all of this to be done.

It is so hard to get good pictures of this all black and dark desk unit which sits against a bright window!

Here is an attempt to get an overall picture:

 

So, when we’re done with this project, I will get some better photos. Perhaps if I take some at night and not have to deal with the light from the window. :-)

So, we’ve already started on the bed project, so we’re off to work on that now. The Kid, like I said is ready for this to be done, but really doesn’t want to work on it anymore. We just need to trudge on through.

Thanks for stopping by and tracking progress. And Happy Crafting Y’All!

Behind the scenes…

When I read others’ blogs and well, to be honest, my own, I sometimes think how easy everything looks. And for anyone who does any amount of DIY projects, you know there is just so much more that goes into it that you sort of skim over when writing.

I was just going through pictures – I have been trying to take more photos as I am working – and wanted to share a few of the ‘behind the scenes’. I have TONS of help from my favorite guy, my 17 year old son who I lovingly refer to as ‘The Kid’ (to help keep him somewhat anonymous on the internet). He is so much help, if for no other reason than he can run up and down stairs so much easier than I can and loves to run errands for me. And what a strong back for lifting!

He was a lot of help in the last project, helping to fix drawers. Here are a couple of photos of him working on the process:

He’s not always thrilled with having his photo taken :-)

Here he is handling cuts on the table saw. True story: when I was in high school, I watched my best friend cut her thumb, her forefinger and part of her middle finger off in a table saw accident. I am always fearful of that piece of equipment, so I am glad I have my son to help there. We both practice great care and safety when using tools.

A general shot of the garage. When I am working on a number of projects, it can start to take over all three bays of my three car garage! Of course, whenever possible, I like to get the finished pieces out of the garage (and out of harm’s way) and then the entryway starts to look like storage! Right now, I have the most pieces done waiting to be sold than ever, and of course, I am also in the middle of the Kid’s room redo.

I do a lot of work during the day when the Kid is in school, so I have the company of my “puppy” Ashla. Sometimes she doesn’t look like she is too happy to be stuck in the garage with me, instead of sleeping on the couch. And she’s not too much help, but she is good company.

Well, that’s about it for today! Thanks for dropping by! And Happy Crafting Y’All!

A Dresser Transformation… from One Highboy to Two Smaller Dressers

Once again, Craigslist has not let me down. For a mere fifteen dollars, I bought a beautiful highboy dresser. Of course, I failed to take a picture of it’s “before” state, but I cruised Google and found an image that the piece was similar to:

The piece on the outside, looked beautiful as was it’s “bones”. But nearly all the drawers required repair, one drawer even needed it all replaced saved for the drawer front. The Kid was remarkable for his work in helping me repair it. He is getting rather accomplished in the workshop.

But I picked up the piece hoping to be able to be able to separate it into two pieces. Or at the very least, make it one smaller piece. It was, after all, almost five foot tall in its original form and that would just not work as a child’s dresser. So, one afternoon, ready to begin work, after first removing the screws, I took a mallet and gently tapped the top rim of the dresser and it came apart easily. Now the fun could begin.

The top piece, with three drawers, turned into the pink ombré dresser. I added the little round feet and after sanding and priming, I did my standard ombré magic. I spray painted four wooded knobs for the top drawer, and in matching spray paint color, I painted four handles for the bottom two drawers:

The handles were picked up at the local Habitat for Humanity ReStore for a whopping dollar a piece. Painted, they look like a million bucks! Ha! I do like the looks and they have a high end look to them.

I also did the same thing for the lower half of the dresser. In black. Here is what I did with the lower half:

I like the way it turned out, too. It is kind of a bit short for a dresser, although it could still be used as one. It could also be the perfect piece to act as a gaming console or television console, the drawers could be used to hide the components or games or movies. You can see the same handles, this time in black. The top is cut from a table that the Kid and I picked up free off CL… that piece was snagged primarily for the base. It will be used in an upcoming project.

Okay, so you don’t have to scroll back up to the top, a before and after:

Okay, that’s about it for today. I have completed much in the last few days and today I’ve almost completed two more projects. After this, I am down to just two relatively big projects that remain unfinished (well, one unfinished and one yet to be started!).

Thanks for dropping by! And Happy Crafting Y’All!

The “Genius” Behind the Black Ombré Dresser

I realized that I needed to expand a bit on my last post. I just sort of threw it up here without any discussion at all.

So here is the before picture:

As you can see, this is a magnificent piece, made of a beautiful wood with gorgeous grain. I was hesitant to paint over it, but it did have scratches and stains and a crack in the base, that although could be repaired, the finish was beyond repair in its natural state. But, oh, such wonderful bones!

Here is the before and after photo:

The black has become my new favorite, we’re using a lot of this in the Kid’s room makeover. I especially like it with the shades of grey (please no reference to “fifty shades”!!) in the ombré style. So stunning and sophisticated, yet still playful in its appearance.

Here is another piece that was recently completed, almost an identical in appearance to the first, albeit a bit smaller:

I love the slim handles that I found on eBay, and I got quick shipping and a great price. You can check it out here, it’s called Marnyn12. I think that the handles are like the candles on a cake!

Here is a quick ‘Before & After’ photo:

There was something else that I wanted to share with you today. Although I consider myself organized and a neat freak, I am not a cleaning nut. And nothing dampens my creative nature than cleaning. So when painting, I was determined to figure out a way to reduce – if not outright eliminate cleaning – from my painting process. At first, I used inexpensive materials, so when I was done I could just throw them away. But I didn’t like that idea for a number of reasons, the two main reasons being that I wasn’t happy with the results of “cheap” materials and the second, I didn’t like the idea of throwing away so much and adding to the landfills. It did get to be expensive as well. So there had to be another answer.

I had heard, with painting, that you could simply freeze the brush in between uses, which did work, but it always took time to get them thawed before I could use them again. And frankly, having all of that mingled in my freezer with my food and ice cream wasn’t sitting so well with me. One weekend while working, I forgot to put the brushes and rollers in the freezer and found the next day that they were just fine. In fact, they were better than fine. They were ready to go when I was, and they retained both their use and their paint color. And it seems, that as long as you have the bags sealed tight, they seem to be lasting quite a long time.

I also found that if I left the paint in the trays that I used when painting, I could simply pour more paint into them on the next painting session and when I was done, I was able to simply peel the paint off the tray! I couldn’t ask for a better system.

This really works for me since I use about the same dozen or so colors. For drop cloths, I have purchased old sheets from thrift stores, averaging about a dollar for a queen or king size… so often you see wonderful patterns under my work in my pictures.

Well, I’m about ready to start working and finish up the final pieces. Three pieces are already being advertised for sale and hopefully I will be delivering them soon.

Happy Crafting Y’all!

And the Ombré continues, this time in Black!

I totally had forgotten to write about this piece, and I knew I had to because I am going to do this several more times before I run out of paint.

I think this turned out stunning! I’m telling you, the photos just don’t do this piece justice. In person, it is simply gorgeous!

I just sold this to a young man who was intently disappointed in not one, not two but three tries at getting something into his bedroom that he was happy with. This became it. I only wish that I could have built him a whole suite. He saw this piece and fell in love with it. As did I!

This is what the piece started out looking like. A very quality, all-wood piece that I was actually given by a gentlemen that was downsizing and didn’t have room for this. When I saw this, I could tell that this had been an absolutely beautiful piece when it was new. Someone put some real love and craftsmanship into this. While me and the Kid were there, he asked if I wanted the matching nightstand. It took a little effort to wrangle it into the back of my truck, but I did it. I was determined to take it with me!

My original intent was to make it a end table for the living room, that is the one draw back to my configuration in my living room, there is no place to set a soda or glass. But once completed, there really wasn’t room for it to sit on either end of the couch, it would just be in the way. :-(

It was painted to match the first craft cabinet (which you can see here)… in my favorite “Kitchenaide Red” paint. It, too, is a wonderful, solid piece, made out of the most gorgeous wood and the wood grain was amazing, it was like they took one slice of wood and the flipped it, like an image. I wished that I could have saved it (and I wished I had taken a photo, sigh), but it was long ignored and damaged.

Here is a close up of the cabinet. Right now, it’s just going to store more (larger) supplies and equipment. I love my red. :-)

Okay, I have about five more projects in various states of completion, I guess I should go get something done! It is stacking up to be a beautiful day.

Thanks for dropping by! And Happy Crafting Y’All!

Catching up on writing and working on my karma…

I never got around to writing about this particular piece. After I had done my purple/violet ombré dresser (you can see the post here), I had a young mom contact me through Craigslist. She was hoping to be able to negotiate a lower price, as her new step-daughter loved purple. I’m sure it was about doing something that would crack the door between them and allow them to build a relationship. Unfortunately, as she explained, she was working but making barely above minimum wage and her budget just didn’t allow for spending this kind of money.

 

I had been in her shoes before. I remember a time in my life when I literally did not have two nickels to rub together. When I first got married, my husband and I used to fork over a huge share of our take home pay to child support. And I don’t exaggerate any to say that it was well over half each month. But I loved him and we both loved his kids and for the sake of peace, we did it with smiles on our face. But I remember those days vividly. And to say that pinching pennies like that was hard is an understatement.

So I wanted to do something nice. I found a decent dresser on Craigslist – not the best quality, but decent – and painted it in the purples that I had left over from the first project. And presented it to her free of charge. The only thing I had asked was that she ‘pay it forward’… someday when her circumstances allowed, she was to do something unselfish for someone else as well.

There was one more pink ombré dresser in there as well. I think this one went just as quickly as the others that came before and after. It is a popular color combination and they always seem to turn out fantastic. I just adore this color scheme.

So, that is a quick ‘catch up’ of some missed projects. Tons more in the works. Something is always brewing.

Thanks for stopping by and as always, Happy Crafting Y’All!

 

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