Canvas Art

I found this idea on Pinterest, of course. I don’t have much of an artistic talent when it comes to painting so I tried to keep it simple. If you haven’t tried making an abstract canvas painting yet, I strongly recommend trying it. This isn’t my first canvas painting, but each time I make one I am very impressed with the final product.

As you can see, I used regular acrylic paint in the colors black and metallic gold. I decided to finally break down and make something in my house with a chevron pattern. Not a huge fan of the pattern because of how popular and cheesy it is. You win Pinterest. You win. I decided to make 3 paintings for the area I was planning on hanging them. I thought about switching up the colors for 2 of the 3 but liked the universal look. As you can see, I first painted each canvas with the metallic gold paint. I then started using tape to outline my pattern. Unfortunately, I only had clear tape which makes it hard to see in pictures. It doesn’t matter if you use clear tape or not.

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I then glopped on the black paint. On the first canvas, the one pictured below, I used too much. I spread the excess to another canvas. Wahla, 3 black canvases. Oh so goth ;p

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And finally, the finished product! Just let it dry and peel off the tape. Very simple project and can’t really go wrong. I did have to use a paintbrush to touch up some sections of gold. Who has time to be a perfectionist anyway? 🙂 I hung the paintings in my guest bedroom and no they are not straight like I wanted them. I need to invest in the tool that helps with that. More decor to come!

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Farmhouse Table

Not only was this my first build, it was also THE TABLE FROM HELL. Everything that could go wrong, went wrong. From a whole box of screws stripping to my tools being stolen from my garage, this table has proven to be a deadly serious dedication. There were too many times to count where my eyes filled with tears and I wanted to just throw it in the fire pit and watch it burn to ash…..BUT I didn’t! With a great amount of support and motivation, I finished the damn thing.

I found the plans on Shanty-2-Chic’s Blog. They found the project on Ana White’s Blog. After doing several months of research, I found tons of blogs that featured this same project. I will admit, even after reading Ana White’s plans for the table, I thought this would be a pretty easy project. Maybe a weekend project? WRONG. This projected took a little over 2 months to complete! No….I didn’t procrastinate :p But seriously, if you haven’t built a piece of furniture before….or anything for that matter….prepare for project that tests your DIY skills, passion, mental thinking, etc. My number 1 suggestion before starting this project is to make sure you have every little tool necessary and that you know how to properly use them. You would think this would be obvious, but as you can probably figure out, I skipped that step.

The whole point of my blog is to show the steps to completing my DIY projects, however; I think the other two blogs listed above take care of that. I will just add my tips that I discovered while completing this monster farmhouse table :p

Step #1 Tip- Check the wood VERY CAREFULLY to make sure the piece of wood isn’t warped or crooked.

Tip- If you are inexperienced with woodworking, I suggest asking a friend to help. Meet Sage. He is a coworker and somehow I managed to get him to help me…….fix every step I completed without his presence haha. But seriously. THANK YOU SAGE! His face sums up how everyone who helped me with this table felt.

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The first step or 2 was to build 2 of these bad boys. This honestly was probably THE hardest part. As if you can’t tell in the pictures, my boards were very uneven which made them bow when screwed to the other pieces. This is when Sage suggested putting shims in between certain boards to try to level the boards. Again, thank you Sage! After much frustration, trial and error, and almost tears….I finally had 2 of these built.

Once the legs were built, I filled the screw holes in with wood filler. I purchased this Elmer’s WoodFiller at Walmart and it worked wonderfully (seriously a SURPRISE)

Wood filling tip- I have seen wood filler bottles/containers that said “stainable”. This bottle didn’t, but included other details so I figured it was the same thing. While it did stain, a little, I would recommend buying a container that specifically states “stainable” because the stain didn’t cover the filler very well.

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Meet helper #2, my wonderful dad. He helped me SO MUCH in completing this table. He is also the one that adequately nicknamed this project “Table from Hell”. Below, he is finishing the center of the table. I honestly can’t determine who put in more work on this bad boy. I purchased the wood, made the cuts (mostly), filled the screw holes, sanded, and stained the table. I also completed a few “building” steps but I’m pretty sure EVERY screw I screwed was fixed by Sage or my dad. Sigh.

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Below is a picture of the table top. It is connected by the 2x4s that are the top of the legs. My dad created this magical way to be able to take the top off the base when you need to move it. This was a great idea because the table top by itself probably weighs 250 lbs. Kidding, 175 lbs ;p20151101_171520

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Size comparison, I started sanding the top at this point because I was getting excited 🙂

AND HERE IT IS! IN ALL ITS GLORY! I’m 99% sure my eyes were filled with tears of…..HAPPINESS and relief. Now it was my turn. Sanding and staining.

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I used three different grits of sandpaper. I sanded the entire piece with 80 grit to start. I then went over the top with 120 grit (including the sides of the top, don’t forget these!). There were certain areas on the legs that I also sanded with 120 grit after the staining process due to the color I wanted. I used 220 grit after applying the stain. I recommend using a tack cloth (I purchased mine at Walmart) to wipe the piece after the sanding process. I wiped my entire piece SEVERAL TIMES.

Once I was satisfied with the smoothness of the table, I started staining. As you can see, I used classic grey stain by Minwax. I was very hesitant on choosing a stain because I didn’t want to not like the stain after all the damn work that was put into this thing! After many hours of IG research, I decided on classic grey. Don’t freak out about how dark the stain looks at first! You can easily spread it out which gives it a lighter color. I recommend setting the table on scrap wood so that you can stain the legs without picking up dirt from the floor.

I let the stain set for 24 hours before I wiped the entire piece with tact cloth. I wanted the table to be as smooth as possible before applying the polyurethane. I only stained the table once because I really liked the worn look. I used clear satin polyurethane. I then let the polyurethane dry for another 24 hours. Next, I sanded the entire top with 220 grit.  After I sanded the top with 220, I again wiped the top with tact cloth. Tact cloth was my friend. I recommend applying at least 2 more coats of polyurethane to the table. I have yet to do this step because I ran out of polyurethane and was WAY TO EAGER TO BE DONE WITH IT/DECORATE IT/PUT IT IN MY HOUSE.

So here it is, in ALL OF ITS GLORY! I plan on building (I seriously can’t believe I want to build something after this nightmare) a bench for one side. I have 3 hand-me-down chairs that I am staining/painting for the other side (you can see 2 of them in the pictures below). As for the “head of the table” chairs, I will hopefully be spending extra dinero on upholstered chairs. What do you guys think? YOU BETTER LIKE IT OR ELSE! I’m kidding….kind of 🙂 There are PLENTY of imperfections with this table BUT I wouldn’t have it any other way. This project was a true test of my “hobby” and I’m glad I stuck it out, with some help ;p

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Award Nomination!!

I must have good timing when I decide to finally make a blog post because after posting about my welcome sign yesterday, Gabby from GabbyYellow nominated me for the Liebster Award!!! Thank you so much for the nomination Gabby! If you’re a passionate DIYer you will love her blog! For being nominated, you are asked to answer 11 questions and nominate 5 other bloggers. Soooo feel free to learn more about me or just skip over the post and look at my other creations 🙂

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1.  If you could wake up tomorrow with the education, skills, and certifications necessary to perform any job, what would you choose for your new career and why?

If I could wake up tomorrow with the education, skills, and certifications necessary to perform a job I would want to work as a contractor/renovator. If I could work with Nicole Curtis even as her assistant I would die happy! Being able to tear apart an ugly house and restore it to it’s beauty would be the best job in the world! From tearing up tile floors to building wood beams, I would be the happiest girl alive!

2.  What is your favorite thing to blog about and why?

My favorite thing to blog about is repurposing or refinishing furniture. I like the challenge of it. The projects also tend to be bigger/larger so when you are finally done you feel very accomplished and proud. My dresser turned entertainment center is definitely my favorite project to date. I haven’t shared the details on my blog yet because all the pictures from the project are on my dad’s laptop. Soon, very soon I will post about it!

3.  What do you do to recharge and get back into the blogging frame of mind?

I recharge and get back into the blogging frame of mind when I get jealous of seeing everyone else’s posts! I love reading about all the beautiful projects other bloggers create which inspires me to start creating something of my own 🙂

4.  What is one thing in your life that you’ve gotten to experience that you wish everyone else could experience as well?

One thing I have experienced that I hope everyone has the chance to experience is completing the Warrior Dash. It is a 3.1 mile challenge with about 12 obstacles. It is so much fun and one of the most rewarding feelings once complete. So try it!

5.  Who is inspiring you at the moment and why?

My younger sister, Katie, is who is inspiring me the most as of now. She just recently got married (& her wedding was AMAZING!) and now she is moving to Arizona. She has lived at home with my parents until now so it is a huge transition and change. She is moving to Arizona because her husband has family there and wanted to move closer. My family has not been very accepting of this life decision which is why she inspires me so much. She is sticking to her decision with her husband and not letting anyone chose her life for her. And that takes a strong woman! 🙂

6.  What is the best meal you’ve ever eaten?

The best meal I have eaten would have to be a shrimp po’boy from a restaurant in Panama City, Florida. Not only was the food good but the scenery was spectacular!

7.  Describe your perfect day.

My perfect day would be relaxing on the Jersey Shore! My entire family (minus my parents and sisters) live up east so we often visit up there. My favorite place in the entire world is my grandparent’s very small, cozy beach house that rests on the jersey shore. If I’m at the beach house with my family then I can’t think of anywhere else I would rather be! From laying out in the sun, to taking a nap in the sand, to having Saturday night coffee with family and neighbors- that would be my perfect day!

8.  What is one modern convenience that you could really not live without?

Running, clean water. From drinking water constantly to taking a shower every morning or after a workout, I can’t imagine not having this luxury! I’m often reminded of this luxury when watching The Walking Dead haha!

9.  What is one thing that people would be surprised to learn about you?

Honestly, I think a lot of people would be surprised that I love to repurpose/renovate/blog. I haven’t told many people about my blog because I don’t feel as if I’m up to par with the rest of the blogging world. I also don’t want to come across as boastful that I am someone who is better at something than someone else. I guess you could say I don’t like being on stage, I’d rather share the spotlight. I’m so weird!

10.  If a movie were made about your life, who would be best cast to play you?

Well if Emma Stone was cast to play me in a movie I would be extremely happy. She is very down to earth and funny and I would like to think that’s how I am 🙂

11.  Who should read your blog and why?

I think anyone and everyone should read my blog! But if you are on a tight budget and like decorating then you will probably enjoy my blog even more 🙂 This is because I am on a fresh-out-of-college-I-have-so-much-debt budget but looooove to decorate and renovate. It’s a blessing and a curse ha!

I nominate:

1) My hilarious coworker and friend, Weston, from FitOn40Hours

2) The oh-so-beautiful blogger, Tay, from TouchofTay

3) My first blogger friend, Sarah, from SarahSkry

4) The very talented, Melissa, from MountPleasantHome (your husband can answer too!)

5) And last BUT NOT LEAST, one of my favorite blogs to read, Becky from TheOtherSideofNeutral

Welcome Sign

I really need to get better at blogging! I work on so many little projects at a time that it takes awhile to finish them 🙂 and when I finally do, it takes me even longer to upload the pictures and blog about the project. I’m sure many, many bloggers can relate ha!

Anyway, I thought I’d share this very simple Welcome sign I just recently finished. I have an obnoxious amount of pallets and other random wood particles in my garage. This can be good and bad. The advantage of stocking up on wood “freebies” is that I save money. A downside is that if I don’t use them by August, I will end up putting them on the curb for trash aka wasting my time and energy from when I picked them up. So I have been actively thinking of different ways I can use up my stash before August (that’s when we move). About 6 months ago, I had made a headboard for our Master Bedroom (I have yet to post about it). I had two extra pieces of plywood from this project. I used the longer, skinnier piece of wood to create this sign. I have to admit that I have seen MULTIPLE signs on Pinterest that gave me the idea to create my Welcome sign (got to love Pinterest!)

The materials I used were:

  • Left over plywood
  • Rustuleom white paint
  • Printable letters with charcoal pencil
  • American Decor chalk paint in navy blue
  • Black acrylic paint

I started by painting the plywood white. I used two coats. Yes, that’s a dog crate I’m painting on top of. I have to get creative when I’m on a tight budget 🙂

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I then found a font on Microsoft Word that I liked and printed the word “welcome”. I used font Batang in bold with a size of 400+. I bought my charcoal pencil from Michaels for under $2. I then traced the letters with the charcoal pencil ON THE BACK SIDE OF THE PAPER. You want to make sure to trace the back side so that when you are tracing it onto the wood, the letters are not backwards. Even though the wood was white at this point, the charcoal outline didn’t show up as clearly as I needed so I went over the letters with a black sharpie marker which put more pressure on the charcoal. This gave it a darker outlining. After I finished tracing the letters onto the plywood I started to fill the letters in with American Decor chalk pain in navy blue. This was my first time using chalk paint. I honestly don’t know why I chose to use chalk paint for the project and you certainly don’t have to use chalk paint for it.

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After the letters dried, I printed a picture of a barn door hinge. I enlarged the picture to match the size of the letters. I used the same tracing technique as the letters. I then filled the hinges in with black acrylic paint which I had in my craft room (I probably have 1 shade of every color in acrylic paint, sorry not sorry) I contemplated using actual hinges to give it more texture and depth but decided the wood wasn’t thick enough (and I secretly didn’t want to spend more money haha) I still need to go over the whole sign with a clear, protective coat. Any suggestions on what I should use?

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Fun Picture Frame Project

WOOOOOOW, I have not updated my blog in a month! It has been a crazy month (both sisters graduated, mother’s day, and one of my sisters is getting married). I have been working on updating my parent’s house rather than working on projects of my own, which I’m completely okay with 🙂 But I finally completed an easy picture frame project that anyone could do!

I found this picture frame at Goodwill and really liked the details on the frame. I had to use pliers to rip out the staples on the back of the frame. This was a lot harder than you would think, grrrr. After removing the staples (took a few nights due to my patience) I painted the frame white. I thought about sanding down parts of it to make it look rustic but I decided against it (obviously lol). After the paint dried, I cut twine rope to the size of the frame horizontally. I found some black patterned clothespins at Michael’s for $1.50 which I used to hang the pictures. WALA, complete! Taking out the staples was the only step that took awhile. Easy picture frame project that you can easily switch pictures in and out from.

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Office Desk for less than $60!

Hello!!! I am unbelievably excited to post about my newest project I just completed. I actually completed last weekend but haven’t had a chance to post about it. I was in desperate need of a workstation for crafting and displaying all my crafting items, hence why I decided to create a desk for my craft room! I decided to repurpose two filing cabinets and a door to complete this idea. Even better, I found the filing cabinets and door at the local Habitat for Humanity Restore! I accidentally overpaid $5 for one of the filing cabinets but didn’t care because it goes to a good cause 🙂 One filing cabinet was $25 the other was $20 and the door was $5. The restore was having a furniture sale of 35% off so I saved even more 🙂 The only other cost was the spray paint. I bought 4 cans which cost about $16 but only used 2.5 cans.

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You will need:

  • 2 filing cabinets
  • 1 door
  • 3 cans of white Rustoleum spray paint (I bought 4 just in case but only used about 2.5)
  • Sander and sanding paper
  • Miniwax Wood Finish
  • Rubber gloves

I started by wiping down the filing cabinets and getting the gunk off from the price stickers. Next I set the filing cabinets on a drop cloth (aka an old tablecloth that my dog chewed a hole in). Let the spray painting begin! I let the first coat dry for about 40 minutes. I strongly advise to wait a good chunk of time before applying the next coat, otherwise the paint will either drip or set weird. If you do end up having paint drips, simply take a piece of sandpaper (use a low grit) and sand down the area. I had to do this SEVERAL times so don’t worry, it happens. Also, if you notice after the first coat that it looks “spotty” don’t worry! After each coat of spray paint it will even out. I took pictures of the spotty look just so you know what it will probably look like after the first coat. I applied 3 coats of spray paint for each cabinet. In the end I used about 2.5 cans of spray paint. I plan on stenciling the filing cabinet doors at a later time. I plan on spray painting the hardware gold in the future.               20150404_152602 20150404_15260720150404_15282820150404_15355220150405_17351220150405_17351820150405_17352620150405_173537

While waiting for the spray paint to dry, I started on the door. I was very excited if you can’t tell! I removed the hardware from the door (it was a sliding door). I then started sanding. The grit level I used was 70. I went over the edges a few times just to make sure it was smooth. After you are done sanding, I wiped down the door with wet paper towels. This step is often called “wet sanding”. I waited about an hour before staining. I used the brand Miniwax for my stain. I used a sock to apply the stain. I also wear rubber gloves when staining. I was unhappy with a few areas after I applied the first coat of stain so I sanded down the areas again. I added more stain to those areas but it didn’t look darker than the other areas. I let the door dry overnight. The door didn’t really need stain but I wanted it just a bit darker so that’s why I applied 1 coat of stain.

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The next day, I used a paintbrush (specifically for polyurethane) too apply the polyurethane. I only applied one coat but probably should have applied more because of how often I will use the desk, again I was TOO EXCITED TO WAIT! I let the polyurethane dry another day.

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Annnnd finally COMPLETE! I moved the filing cabinets into my craft room then set the door right on top. Again, I plan on spray painting the hardware a gold color and stenciling the front of the cabinets. Maybe a navy blue? What do you guys think? Any suggestions? So far it is very sturdy. I know this because I had to sit on it to complete my gallery wall above it 🙂 And of course I had to take several pictures of this “area” because I am so happy about how it turned out! Hope everyone has a FANTASTIC weekend!

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Gallery Wall Project

I debated whether I should blog about my most recent painting or not. To me, it seems so small and not a big deal (even though I’m beyond excited about how it turned out!). It was a simple project that can add a special touch to a gallery wall. I plan on using it on my gallery wall in my craft room (will post about that later).

You will need:

  • Canvas (I purchased mine at Michaels)
  • Black Paint
  • Level
  • Gold Glitter
  • Glue, Pencil, Paintbrush
  • Stencil

I found my “stencil” or outline via Pinterest however I can’t find the link now. I recommend checking out littlegoldpixel.com for free printables because her site is outstanding. I outlined the deer with permanent marker then set it underneath the canvas. Oh so carefully, I traced the outline with pencil onto my canvas. You could also cut out the deer and trace it on top of the canvas buuut my cutting skills are not that great.

After tracing the deer outline, I used a level to create the vertical lines. I then filled in every other section with black acrylic paint. Don’t forget to paint the appropriate edges so that when it’s hanging on the wall it will look seamless. I let that dry overnight [finished this step at midnight :o]. The next day I filled in the deer with a thin layer of good ol’ Elmer’s glue. Final step, sprinkle gold glitter all over the glue until it makes your heart explode with happiness. BOOM, you’re done! Easy right? If you try this or something similar I would love to see pictures! Because that kind of thing makes my heart happy 🙂 I will be making a longer post later this week with a bigger project that I’ve been working on. Feel free to just look at the pictures and skip the reading 🙂

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Thrifty Spring Decor Dos!

I hope you’ve had a chance to read my other spring decor project I posted earlier today. For this project I used: recycled glass jars, chalkboard paint, dollar store moss, and dollar store flowers. I’m not a huge fan of the dollar store flowers because I’m already not a huge fan of fake flowers to begin with but my oh so lovely budget calls for cheap fake flowers. For the glass jars, I just clean out pickle jars, gravy jars, tomato sauce jars, etc. I liked the idea of using different sized jars to make it more whimsical. I have used these glass jars for each season and just change the word of the season with chalk. That’s right, all FOUR seasons have the same amount of letters! (Spring, Summer, Autumn, Winter) Yes that’s right, I switched the word Fall to Autumn to make it work 🙂 Ironically, I can use the same amount of glass jars to spell Kansas and plan to put wheat in the jars during the summer when I get tired of “summer”. Anyway, I had already painted the glass jars with chalkboard paint and didn’t take a picture of doing so (it was pre-blog days).

I started by spreading green moss into the bottom of each jar. Again, I bought the moss from Dollar Tree and honestly I couldn’t be happier about how it looks! I then cut the dollar store flowers so that they were the height I needed. I used scissors and pliers to cut the flowers at the stem. This took a little work and made me realize I need to invest in wire cutters. I divided the flowers between each jar and obviously wrote the word “Spring” on the chalkboard paint circles. I’m not a huge fan of my handwriting so bare with the not-so-cute font. I’m going to finish the project by using the rope I used in the previous spring decor post. I’m going to wrap the top of the jars with the rope to give it more of a polished or finished look. What do you guys think? Any ideas on what to put in the jars besides flowers?

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Thrifty Spring Decor

I’M SO HAPPY IT IS FINALLY SPRING! I was in such an “eh” decorating mood after I took down all my Christmas decor. Does anyone else have this problem? Anyway, as you probably know, I have a TIGHT budget. This means that when it comes to decorating, I need to come up with very cheap decor ideas. The following spring decor items were made from dollar store and Goodwill finds. I go to Goodwill or Salvation Army almost on a weekly basis. I have only been to the thrift stores in my town and the town I grew up in but today I’m venturing out to some thrift stores in fancy communities. My goal is to find cheap items to use for a candy buffet for my sister’s bridal shower but secretly I really want to find some nicer items to use for my house decor 😮

On to the spring decor project! I found the three tin buckets at the Goodwill back home. They were each .49 which is AWESOME! I also bought a larger tin bucket for $1.99 but haven’t figured out what to do with it yet. I bought the green moss from Dollar Tree as well as the colored mini eggs. I already had the white candle and will probably replace the mini eggs with two more white candles after Easter. I already had the rope which I bought at Michaels (I am obsessed with that store but who isn’t!)

Instead of having to use a ton of the moss to fill the buckets to the top, I crumpled newspaper and then set the moss on the top and sides. This helped save the moss for the other project I will talk about next. What do you guys think? Any ideas on how to change up the decor in the buckets?

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Another Bookshelf Makeover

I really enjoy using wrapping paper to help bring a boring bookshelf to life. For this bookshelf, I used wrapping paper from Target found in the dollar deal section. I found that cute little owl at Dollar tree too! I have been dying to paint this piece of furniture but haven’t had an idea worth trying yet. What do you think? Keep it black or paint it another color?

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