Wednesday, September 14, 2011

The Antique Wardrobe

The antique wardrobe is finished...for now. Mr. DIY is still digging in his heels about painting the exterior of the wardrobe. After a good cleaning with bleach and Lysol, I got started.

Mr. DIY is 6'2". The wardrobe is over 7 feet tall.

The interior was a rough, unfinished wood. I used an old "junk" brush to prime. Due to the previous inhabitants of said wardrobe, I wanted to make sure every inch was covered.

I thought I chose a nice, fresh olive green color for the interior. Instead it looked like neon yellow. I tried to live with it for a few days. It wasn't happening. Back to Lowes I went.

The new color I chose is called Weathered Glass (EB8-3) by Eddie Bauer Home at Lowes. It is nice and bright and gives me a feeling of clean when I open the doors. The pictures are not great because I took them with my old point and shoot...and they were taken indoors. The dark spot you see on some of the pictures is something on the lens inside the camera. I'll use my Rebel XT from now on.

When I finished painting, Mr. DIY built new shelves for both sides of the wardrobe. They are got a fresh coat of Weathered Glass.

For now, it is still sitting in our dining room. It is too big to maneuver it into our bedroom. Slowly but surely, I'll get it moved into our home office. I will use it to store cherished, hand-quilted quilts, embroidered doilies, runners, and pillow cases made by Mr. DIY's grandmother. It also holds grandma's wedding gown and my wedding gown.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Many Furniture Refinishing Projects

Mr. DIY's 85-year-old grandmother passed away last week. She lived out on the family farm. We now have the task of cleaning out her house. Like many people from her generation, she was a "pack rat" or hoarder if you will. She saved everything from fast food containers to used tin foil. As we dig through the house, the treasures we are finding are phenomenal!

She was a quilter. She kept a notebook with a record of every quilt she ever made and who she made it for or sold it to. We are talking hundreds and hundreds of quilts...they were hand quilted, not machine quilted. Three Lane cedar chests full of finished quilts, quilt tops, blocks, embroidered pillow cases and doilies were divided between my husband and his sister. We each also chose a cedar chest to keep our treasures in.

The remaining items in the house will go to my husband and I. There are many antique dressers, tables, wooden chairs, a china cabinet, dry sink, and my absolute antique wardrobe. I fell in love with it the minute I laid eyes on it. It even still has the key to lock it!

The only down side to these wonderful treasures...mouse droppings. Living on a farm and being an elderly, stubborn German lady (I say this with love, she was ornery!), she refused help with her house and the mice have taken over. My first instinct is to bleach everything, but I don't want to ruin any of the pieces.

I'm looking to my fellow DIY furniture refinishers for advice on how to clean these pieces so they are able to be used again and without hurting them.

I still need to take pictures of the pieces, but many of them are still in the house and will be moved to a storage trailer temporarily until I can work my way through them.

Craigslist Wine Rack

What can I say? We've had a busy summer and I'm just a lousy blogger.

I'm in the middle of refinishing a wooden wine rack that I purchased off Craigslist.

It was very wobbly and required new screws to reinforce it.

Mr. DIY also made a top for it. If you noticed in the first picture, the wine racks are stack-able. Mr. DIY had to drill holes in the top to fit down over the pegs. In order to get the correct depth, we used electrical tape wrapped around the drill bit. When the tape "tail" begins to "dust" the drill shavings from your board and touches the board, you know you have drilled deep enough. It's a neat little trick.

I have it all sanded down and ready to paint; however, I haven't chosen a color yet so it waits.

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

The Heavy Fence Gate

Mr. DIY and I decided to fence in our yard a few years ago. We had Lowes come out and measure our yard and tell us exactly how much lumber we would need. We purchase said lumber and bring it home. Being the DIYers that we are, we were going to install the fence ourselves. A week later, I found out I was pregnant. No lifting heavy fence posts for me.

Mr. DIY's step-dad came down on a Sunday a few weeks later and helped him set all the posts. Mr. DIY built the entire fence by himself without any help at all. It was interesting to watch. He/we had never done any kind of project like this before. So we were absolute novices when it came to hanging the gates. It really isn't a difficult task, but we weren't exactly sure how we wanted to handle the opening to our carport.

He sunk the posts in the ground as close to the house as he could get. The concrete footings from the house were in the way and there was just no way to chip the concrete back. So there was always a gap between the posts and the house. Something I wasn't too crazy about.

Being the novices that we were, we used the same 8ft. posts that we had used on the rest of the fence. This would have been fine if there had been more fencing connected to that post to help support the weight. So of course, the gate began to sag and had to be supported on the opposite side. This made it extremely difficult for me to open and close so I never used it. I would trek through the house to get from the front to the back yard....which means more dirt in my house. It's a vicious cycle I tell ya!

This weekend I had a brilliant idea! Let's mount the gate to the house and the shed on the carport. Okay, maybe not so brilliant, but the answer to my gate woes. This was a simple little project with lots of impact! We simply mounted the 4x4s to the house with 3 lag bolts each. That was probably the hardest part of the project because the bolts were rather long and beefy so our little battery-powered impact wrench would only take them so far. We had to screw the bolts the rest of the way in with a socket wrench with a cheater bar on it.

I can now open and close the gate with one hand. It swings freely and I don't have to lift up on it to open it. I am downright giddy over this gate! :)The gate along with the rest of the fence and the house needs a good pressure washing. My dad was using it all weekend so it will have to wait until next weekend.

Hindsight also tells me we really didn't need take the posts all the way to the top. We could have just cut them a little above the gate. We just had it in our heads that we needed a spacer between the posts to keep them spread apart. This isn't necessary since they are bolted to the house. Live and learn.

Cutting down the old posts. Hopefully he will get them dug out next weekend and we can get started with some landscaping back here.
Drilling the pilot holes for the lag bolts.
Those are some beefy lag bolts. Getting ready to screw them in.

The finished gate from the inside of the carport.
It needs a good pressure washing, but it looks so much better. I love how it is flush with the siding.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

It's over

The tornadoes all went around us. We had straight-line winds and lots of rain. No injuries or significant damage in my town. Quite a bit of damage about 30 miles to the south of us. Every muscle in my body is aching today from all of my anxiety yesterday. I'm so thankful that we were spared and praying for those who were not.

I have many, many projects that I need to post about, but I need to scan in the before pictures. I didn't think to take pics before we started tearing things up. The only pictures I have are from when I bought the house...before I had a digital camera. The other problem is that those pictures are in a tote in the top of a closet that I can't reach. Need to get Mr. DIY to get up there and get them down for me.

I have many projects to work on this summer too. I want to refinish the rocking chair that I had as a child for my son. I also have a porch swing that my grandpa made for me before he died that needs to be refinished. So stay tuned for more posts...I promise!


Wednesday, May 25, 2011

The storm

Today, we are about to have a devastating storm. The weathermen and EMA have been trying to prepare us for the last 24 hours. This is expected to be bigger than the storm that wiped out Joplin, Missouri. I'm terrified. Terrified to tears. The Inland Hurricane that we experienced on May 8, 2009, won't have anything on this storm. That was the scariest day of my life. I feel so helpless and out of control right now. I'm sure this may seem melodramatic to some, but my fear is very real.

We have nowhere to go in our house. Every room has windows and we do not have a basement. Not that it matters anyway because they say that no bathtub or interior room will save us. I am packing up as many necessities as I can. We will be going to a friend's house across town and getting in their basement. It's an older home, I hope it holds up. I still haven't asked if we can bring our dogs. I just can't leave them behind. Daisy has been with me for 14 long years. We have been advised that we are to seek shelter throughout the entire night as the storm will be coming in waves. By Thursday afternoon everything should be over and we can come out.

Please say a prayer for us and everyone in our area. Let's this all be a bad dream.


Friday, April 29, 2011

In honor of the Royal Wedding...

I thought I would post some pics of my own wedding day. I had no desire for a big wedding. My mom had been driving me crazy over every detail...even my choice of colors. Finally, I said enough is enough and called the travel agent. Eric and I were married in Negril, Jamaica on July 31, 2007.

We were supposed to be married on the beach with the sand between our toes, but it started to rain. We waited over an hour for the rain to stop and it never did. We were married on what was called the sunset patio. The rain ended as soon as our ceremony ended. They say it is good luck if it rains on your wedding day. I'm curious as to when we are supposed to see that luck. LOL

Did I mention that Eric had an emergency appendectomy a week before our wedding and had his staples removed the day before we left? Yeah, that was just the beginning of insane things that have happened in our marriage.

This picture was taken later by people walking on the beach. We were killing time waiting for our dinner to start.
Trying to decide if I wanted to "trash the dress" or not.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Spring Sign

I know I am way behind on posting. My 2-year-old is becoming quite the handful lately. I can't turn my back on him for long because he is constantly getting into something. Seriously, he cracked eggs in my living room this morning.

So I worked on a quick little project last week while he was napping. I recently joined GroopDealz. It is a really cool website that features handmade crafts and goods from small businesses. They idea is that the business lists a product for very cheap. The business sets a minimum purchase required for the deal to be "on". So they may need 50 items purchased for the deal to go. If only 25 people purchase, the deal is canceled. If 50 people or more purchase, the deal is on.

I've been taking advantage of this website quite a bit lately. They have been featuring a lot of vinyl decals lately. If you are a fan of Uppercase Living, you will know what I'm talking about. I haven't paid more than $7 for any vinyl lately. The last piece I purchased from UL was almost $50.

Anyway, I picked up this cute Spring decal on GroopDealz from My TreeHouse Treasures.

We had some pine left over from another project that I had been working on. I had Mr. DIY cut it to the correct size for me and got to work. Following the directions from MTHT, I sanded the cut edges of my board. Then using white acrylic craft paint mixed with a little water, I painted my board on all sides.

When my board was dry, I attached my vinyl decal. I sanded the edges once again and wiped stain over the entire board to give it an aged look. This is the first project that I have done like this and I'm pretty excited with how it turned out.

Happy Spring!!!

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

For Kat:

I sucked it up and took pictures of the living room floor. Please note that I did not take them during the day where every little speck of dust would show. LOL!

Please ignore the hideous floor lamp circa 1986, the wooden doors, and no trim. It's all a work in progress I tell ya. The floor lamp came from the depths of the spare room. With the dark floors, the room seems even darker in the evenings so we needed some light. I'm currently shopping for end tables.

The kid stuff...well, what can I say, we live in a small house. I always swore that I wouldn't have a living room full of brightly colored plastic toys. It's a totally different story once said child is here. I did move the little picnic table to my office for a while, but it was just too tight in there.

Yes, the curtains are too short. I hung them straight out of the package from Pier 1. They had been up a year when we refinished the floors. I figured it was time to wash them. Per instructions on the tag, I washed them in cold water and did a very cool dry cycle. I am NOT KIDDING when I tell you that these things shrunk by almost a foot! I was completely stunned when I saw them hanging there. I need to lower the curtain rod of find new curtains. Neither of which is an easy task.

Those windows are 144" long. That's right...12 FEET LONG. That rod is stretched at maximum capacity and hanging by a wish and a prayer. Do you have any idea how hard it is to find a curtain rod that long?

All in due time. One of these days it will all be finished. I've just got to learn how to finish one project before starting another. I'm impulsive. What can I say?

Monday, March 14, 2011

Nursery Part 2

Next Mr. DIY hung the drywall and re-finished the floors. There aren't too many pictures of the process because I was on bed rest. I'll just give you the Cliffs Notes version.

I don't have any pictures of the drywall going up or the mudding. So this is what the room looked like while the drywall was being sanded.

Mr. DIY is proud of all his dusty work.

Next up are the floors. These are solid oak floors that are original to the house. They have not been refinished in over 30 years. Surprisingly, they were still in pretty good shape. There were a few small spots that needed sanding and of course, it wasn't very waterproof anymore.

Being the novices that we were, Mr. DIY sanded the entire room with a 1/4 sheet palm sander...with 3 different grits. It took a long time. He also didn't wear any knee pads. *gasp*

Testing out a spot in the corner.

The room completely sanded (by hand) and ready for a clear coat of poly.

The floor is finished. Three coats of poly brushed on with a sanding in between each coat.

A close up. Not too bad for a first-timer.

And finally, the completed room (minus the trim around the floor)