Big Push to Clear the Garage, About 5 Projects at Once!

Temperatures in the midwest (all over the country actually) have dropped sharply with the advent of this ‘arctic air blast’. All I know is one day I am driving home from work with the windows down, temps about 70 degrees with a slight breeze, and overnight, there is a light snowfall, winds are brisk and daytime temps don’t break the 30 degree mark. Brrrr!!

What the bigger picture means for me is that I need to get the third stall of the garage cleared, get the car washed/waxed/detailed and then safely tucked into the garage for the winter. Me thinks it is going to be a cold one!

So, to that end – getting the garage cleared out – means getting some projects done (and sold) so that we can reclaim that space. Here is what the garage looks like as we try to tackle multiple projects at the same time… all with some urgency:

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I picked up this cute little trunk at an estate sale. It had a name and some flowers painted on the top, so am really just in the mode to sand the top, prime and then repaint the entire thing. I would LOVE to keep this, as it matched all of the cabinetry in my sewing/craft room, but I don’t think it is possible to square that much space out from the room!

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Dresser Number 1: This five drawer dresser is a solid piece of furniture and has a matching 3 drawer chest as well. These are slated for the pink ombré style and hopefully will be sold together.

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Dresser Number 2: As indicated this one will be finished in the most beautiful shades of pink:

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I use all of the darker shades of pink from the left card and the bottom (Scented Valentine) from the bottom of the card to the right. The cabinet color is the top and lightest pink (Barely Pink) which paints oh so beautifully over the white primer.

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I haven’t quite decided on this dresser… the drawers have ‘cut away’ handles, which I am not fond of. On occasion, I have been known to fill these in with wood filler, but the depth of these are probably too much to fill. I am giving some consideration to doing another suitcase dresser (you can see them here and here), although that process takes considerably more time than just paint. We’ll see how the rest of the projects are going before I decide.

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We needed some room to work tonight, so all of the primed drawers have been piled up on a table in my “paint booth”… no spray painted needed for the next few days, so I am taking advantage of the unused space.2014-11-08 19.19.11

Two of the dresser cabinets required new tops. It never ceases to amaze me how much damage a person can inflict on the top of a dresser. But, honestly, it is so much easier to replace the dresser top than drawers and sometimes it is all that is needed to make on older piece look brand new. We procure two 1″x12″ of pine and look for boards that don’t have too much knotting or overt grain patterns (above). Once in a while, I even just stain the top if it looks nice enough. The boards are fitted together, glued and clamped.

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Once the glue had dried and clamps removed, the board is cut to length (essentially cut in half). Then using the tops that were removed from the cabinets, the exact shapes are traced and a jig saw is used to cut them out. You can see one on the floor and the other on the table. Next step is to route a nice edge and then some sanding.

2014-11-08 19.19.00Here is the mirror and frame for one of the dressers… this is bound to be part of a pink dresser.

2014-11-08 15.23.53A shot of the “other side” of the garage… where my sports car needs to hibernate for the winter.  Doesn’t look like it, but we’ve really made a big dent. And once sold, it should be a nice little chunk of money. The Kid is hoping to use the money as a down payment for his real “first” car. It is giving him some real incentive to keep him working.2014-11-08 15.23.16We started this out on Sunday, things neatly lined up – being accessed, planned and prep’ed. If you’re wondering about the carpets, I collected them from CraigsList. They make standing in the garage much nicer, they help to soften noise and it allows me to run out there without shoes on, if I need. Plus, for some odd reason, The Kid is much more willing to vacuum the garage, rather than sweep. Go figure!2014-11-08 15.23.10Check out my work space! Isn’t it lovely? I so enjoy working here now that things are clean, organized and equipped.

Much work still to be done, but we’re making progress!

julie

 

 

 

Wardrobe Redesign

Months ago, I ran across a beautiful old wardrobe that had been handed down to someone who apparently didn’t appreciate what they had. It was relegated to a corner of a garage and because of this, the front doors and bottom frame sustained some pretty extensive damage. Sad face.

But, that also meant that I picked it up for a song. The interiors are immaculate and the back and top are in really great shape too. But that left open the question of what to do to “fix” the damage. It sat unattended for some time while I finished other projects and even when I went back to work (funny how a full time job with a lengthy commute can eat into my spare time), I tried to re-sell it to someone else who might want to take it on as a restoration project. No luck.

But this might work out to my advantage. Now on evenings and weekends I am going to set to bringing my own special touch to this piece. I searched high and low for walnut veneer, without much luck, as I didn’t have to want to travel too far or pay too much. So, again it sat in my garage, although in much better surroundings.

And I have stumbled onto the design I want to take it. And there is a nice little tutorial on how to approach it. If you’re interested in how to do it, just visit the website.

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I am going to rebuild the base with the help of my son and then I am going to strip the veneer off the doors and sand it down to a nice solid finish. Then it is going to get painted in a beautiful high gloss black and then the doors are going to get a colorful abstract painting in bold beautiful colors. The interiors are simply going to get a cleaning and a sealer to protect the still beautiful finish.

So, here is the before:

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And I will provide updates as I progress. There is no hurry to getting this project done and I want to take my time with it. In the meantime, I am also working on the other American Girl dollhouse project. This one will be sold when done, and I expect it to command a pretty penny. And it will be a fun project as I work on it.

Here is the work so far:

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Basically it is a big box. :-) It measures 48″ wide by 48″ high and is 24″ deep and the shelf rests at 24″ and is built out of beautiful cabinet grade plywood (I’m thinking hardwood floors throughout). Yes, this is the beginnings of the most amazing dollhouse for 18″ sized dolls, ie. American Girl dolls. Although there are a wide variety of popular dolls that size, including Our Generation, Madame Alexander, Favorite Friends and so many more, that would feel just as home in this doll house. Intentions include a base which should be a small lawn and an attic. The kitchen will be to-die-for… boasting turquoise appliances and a plethora of cabinets and I am hoping for an adjoining dining room. It is also to have a bathroom (you should see the toilet!) and a bedroom. I have so much collected already, I am excited to see this come together.

Thanks for dropping by and taking a peek. And apologies for being so absent lately. Come back soon!

julie

A Little More Catch-Up

Seems these days I am busier than a one-legged man in a butt kicking contest. Ha! (Something my Dad used to say!)

You’ve been seeing the larger projects as they are completed, but there always seems to be little projects that slip under the radar. So while paint is drying and ink is curing and things are generally still for a few minutes, I thought I would get a few more things written.

The black/gray ombré continues to be a very hot commodity. I have loved it from the start, but a person needs a break, even from something you love! I picked up five shades of yellow this afternoon… can’t wait to get started with that!

In the meantime, I met a very nice woman who had inadvertently turned her living room into a furniture storeroom. She only had very nice, small pieces – chairs, tables, side tables, shelves – and pretty old, but in pristine condition. I answered a Craigslist ad for a chest and without really realizing it, it wasn’t the normal dresser size pieces I was used to. But since she sold it to me at a very good price, I thought I’d give it a shot.

Of course, I forgot to take a before picture and somehow didn’t even keep the Craigslist photo. I thought I had been getting better about this! :-( But here is the ‘after’ picture:

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It’s a nice little piece, perfect for a home office… which is where it went in its new owner’s home. Nice little compact size seemed to be very popular, I had no less than 5 offers for it! When all was said and done, it was the first person to show up with cash!

A couple of days later, I ran across an ad for a similar cabinet, and repeated the process. Finished today and about ready to list it. I think it turned out nice as well, and again is a perfect little size for a printer to sit on and would hold paper and office supplies. Add a little pizzazz to a space.

Little Black&White2 Before&After

This piece took a whole lot more work than I am normally accustomed to doing. On the surface it looked okay and I knew I would be in for a bit of sanding, but it turned out that nearly all five drawers almost had to be glued and repaired, plus the bottoms all required replacing. And it was missing the little kick plate on the front. But in the end, I think it turned out gloriously. I just love the slim, modern handles.

There was another small cabinet, more standard dresser size. A fairly standard remake, this one only required a bit of gluing and a new back (how does the back of a dresser get damaged?) but sanding, priming and a couple of coats of my favorite black and grays and viola! it, too was done.

LittleDresser B&A

Each time I finish one of these pieces with the black/gray ombré, I vow to take a break from it for a while. But it seems to be a favorite and at the end of the day, the primary purpose is to finish furniture that appeals to people and then sell it to them. And this combination seems to sell well.

I picked up the final paints for the special project that I am working on for Danielle. And now that the final primer coats have taken care of the blue outlines on the drawers and a flower shape has been roughly designed, I am ready to tackle the primary coats of paint. I am excited about how this is going to turn out… here is the photo of the inspiration dresser:

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Danielle is using the colors from Sherman Williams, called Teen ‘Glam’ and I have come to really like them:

SherwinWilliam Colors

I have a little creative license to chose which colors I use, but I know that whatever color combination, it will be making a real statement when it is done. Here it is primed:

Primed

This also shows that I filled in half of the holes for knobs, as I’ve chosen this beautiful knobs to replace the outdated ones that were on it:

Knobs

Just waiting on their arrival via eBay. I love eBay and Craigslist both for different reasons, but without them, I think I would be lost. :-)

Okay, that about gets me caught up, with the exception of the doll projects that me and the Kid have in the works… which includes hangers and the first of the bed series. And of course, I always have multiple dressers in the works and also my sewing room is the location of quite a few doll outfits as well. A million things in progress, always so hectic. But that wouldn’t be me, if I didn’t. :-)

Okay, gotta run get materials to create miniature mattresses. Glad you could stop by!

And as always, Happy Crafting Y’All!

julie

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