Sunday, May 27, 2012

Modified Mid-Century Modern

I like the mid-century modern style and thought this would be a fun piece to update when I found it at a garage sale. It was only $25 and is a Broyhill Premier Modern Classic. Quality I tell you, quality. The top was ruined by a spill and scratched up and the right front leg was broken off. After fixing the leg with some  "L" brackets, I sanded down the whole dresser and all the drawers. I wanted to learn how to stain wood. Unfortunately the top was too damaged to stain, so I chose to paint the frame of the dresser and stain the doors and drawers.

After two coats of each I gave the dresser a light coat of polyurethane to seal it.

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*Any picture used from this post may not be altered or cropped - Thanks!*

I have started a new sport. Hubcapping. Pretty much you keep your eye peeled while driving, and when you see a hubcap, you pull over, jump out of the car and grab it. I have done it with my friends, and my mom. Both times I have not been driving so I do not feel like I’m being too dangerous. The best part is I get free hubcaps to upcycle and some of the things lying on the side of the road get picked up. Really I am doing the community a service.

I was looking for hubcaps to upcycle them into yard art. I found three to use for this project. They had been lying on the side of the road or in the median for a while and had even been propped up against trees by the gardeners.  The hubcaps were VERY dirty. After I hosed each of them off, I used a Clorox wipe to get ALL the dirt and grime off of them. Then I sanded them, focusing more on sanding the places that were scuffed and scratched. These people were not the best drivers. I started painting one of them a bright blue, but I went out and bought some yellow, orange and red spray paint to have bright "flower" colors.

I love that they all have different designs! Here they are after getting a few coats of paint:

I added some embellishments to make the hubcap flowers look more unique. I used extra craft supplies and other fun things we had around the house. The stems are broken shovel handles, and I added some foam leaves and one wood leaf to make the hubcaps look more realistic :).

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Friday, May 25, 2012

A Tiny, Old Dresser

This cute little dresser came from a garage sale and was in need of some love!

Someone had started to glue ripped up brown paper bags to give it this look. He never finished, and I wanted to do something different with it, so off came the paper bags.

After a sanding with the electric sander, the drawers were looking something like this:

There had previously been two coats of paint on the dresser. A funky green and a funky pink. I knew I was putting a map on the top of the dresser to cover up some ruined areas, so I picked out a light grey. I had previously gotten the paint for a quarter from the Habitat for Humanity Re-Store.

I painted one coat on the dresser and the drawers, but the spots with missing paint were still visible, so I re-sanded all the drawers by hand with 220 grit sandpaper. Then I put another coat on the dresser and two more coats on the drawer.

Putting the map on the top required two people, so I got my mom to help. The spray adhesive we had was not working (maybe it was clogged) so I used a glue mixture (Elmer's glue and water). We laid the map out, positioning it on the top. I spread the glue mixture on the top and we laid it down, and started smoothing it out with our hands and some gift cards (really just needed something plastic). The map wrinkled and bubbled in many places. I thought it would is a couple areas but not as much as it did. There was nothing I could do, so I left it. It is hard to see the winkles and bubbles in the pictures.

The next day I cut the map so it fit the top of the dresser, and used polyurethane to seal it and stick the edges down. Usually polyurethane is used on pieces that have been stained, but I have found it also works on painted furniture. I had previously used polycrylic, but that yellowed the pieces I put it on, so we returned it to the store. When using polyurethane on paint I make sure to do multiple thin coats.

The hardware for the drawers also came from Habitat for Humanity. Each pull was $0.50. You can't beat that! The only problem is finding enough matching drawer pulls since they may only have a few of each and they are thrown in boxes. It's a hunt!

Here is the dresser all finished!

DIY Tufted Ottoman (Part 2)

I have finally finished the tufted ottoman I have been working on! It took WAY longer than I anticipated, but I think the finished product looks pretty great.

·         3” foam - $18.99
·         Spray adhesive (for the foam) - $6 (after 50% coupon from JoAnn's)
·         Automatic/professional nail gun - borrowed from a friend
·         Buttons - approx. $14 (on sale)
·         Cord (stronger than thread for tufting) - $5
·         Paint (for the legs of the table) - leftover from another project
·         Upholstery needle - $3 (with 50% coupon from JoAnn's)
·         Drill - already owned
·         Nail head - $18 (Lowe's)
·         Fabric - $20 (2 1/4 yards)
·         Hammer
·         Batting (1”) - $10 (with 50% coupon)
*Note: We went multiple times to the fabric store because we did not realize we needed some of these things.
TOTAL: $95

The coffee table started out looking like this:

And after paint:

After painting the legs and sides of the table (more on that here), I started by calculating where I needed to drill holes for the tufting. I was using 12 buttons, so I calculated and drew out where they would go so that all of them would be evenly spaced. For those of you wanting to know, the measurements of my coffee table were 32” x48”. After marking the holes, I drilled each one out.

The size of the coffee table I had was too large to buy a single piece of foam (with no seams) that did not cost over $85. We got a tip from one of the works at JoAnn’s to check out Fred Meyer. Back in the sporting goods section we found foam and it was CHEAP. Even at JoAnn’s with a half price coupon and a seam it was going to cost $60 plus adhesive to piece the 3” foam together. At Fred Meyer we got a 30” x 72” piece of 3" foam for $18.99. That made us happy!

Next I cut two pieces of foam. The way to cut foam is with an electric turkey carver. My mom had gotten hers at Value Village for about $4 a while ago. We used the spray adhesive (specifically for foam) to adhere the two pieces. Spraying each side with the adhesive with a thick coat worked best, but the can has more instructions. After reading this blog about making a tufted headboard, we decided to also hollow out holes halfway down into the foam for deeper tufts. (If you want to know more about the steps we followed, refer to the link) After making the holes in the foam, we sprayed the top of the table with adhesive and stuck the foam to it so there would be no shifting while we were tufting.

Note: Instead of the pipe tool she used, we used an apple
 core tool and picked out the foam to make the holes for tufting. I think it worked just fine.

Before we started tufting, we laid the batting out and staples it to the under edge of the table (the top overhang) so it would not be wrinkled. The batting can stretch, so there was no way it would rip while tufting.

Note: This is a two person job! You need two pairs of hands. Or at least we did.
We laid the fabric out so it was centered on the ottoman, then I  poked the upholstery needle (ours was about 7in) up through the bottom of the table, through the foam, batting and fabric to know where to come back down. We doubled our cord up for a stronger hold. The loop at the end was stuck through the button, and then the  two ends of the cord were pulled through the loop (if that makes any sense). Next we threaded both ends through the needle and threaded it through the fabric, batting and foam and lastly through the drilled hole. This part is difficult. You have to get the right angle and poke around until you find the hole. I was lying under the ottoman, and when the needle came through, I pulled until I saw the cord.

I had to pull each side to figure out which was attached to the ends. Once the ends were through, my mom held the button down to create the tuft, and I used the staple gun to staple each cord to the bottom of the table like shown below. I zigzagged each end to hold the tuft, and tied a knot so it would not come undone. Some of the staples were not in all the way, but a quick hammering solved that problem.

Note: Safety goggles are recommended. I realized this after getting something in my eye. After a three hour trip to the urgent care at 9PM and a possible scratched eye, my mom and I finished the tufting at 12AM. Everything was fine and better after a couple hours. I got an antibiotic to make sure I did not have an infection. It was a funny story!

Here is the top of the ottoman without the edges and corners stapled:

After the tufting was finished, we stapled the fabric underneath the overhang of the top. (Also we left the corners until the very end). Then, instead of taking the fabric down, and underneath, we cut and folded ours. The corners can be done many different ways. It is all up to personal taste. My mom is the one who is good at this kind of thing (even if she does not enjoy it) so she pleated the corners and I stapled then down. The last thing to add was nail head. This was time-consuming because it was unbelievably hard to get them into the wood. I ended up pre-drilling through the fabric and into the wood partway to make it easier. We did not own a rubber mallet, and a regular hammer dents the nail head, so we put a garlic shaped rubber jar opener on the nail head to prevent dings and scratches. (that is what you see in the picture)

Here is a before and after of the coffee table/ottoman.

We did end up cutting about 2" off of each of the legs. Since we added 3" of foam, it was awkwardly tall.

Friday, May 18, 2012

All Mapped Out!

Lately I have been really into maps and globes. I love the colors and think they are great to add as wall art, or to furniture. My mom and I recently went to a used bookstore in town. We got 8 folded paper maps for 25 cents each and an atlas for 3 bucks!

All of the maps we got are outdated (most of them from the 60’s), but they work for projects. I plan to frame some of the pages from the atlas. I especially love the colors in this atlas because they are different that the “normal” map colors.

Here is a preview of a dresser I am doing. I used a world map to cover the top of the dresser since it was messed up in one area.

An Easy Update

Updating or furnishing a room does not have to be expensive. The best way to change a room and add color is in the accessories.
When I changed my room last summer, one of my favorite, easy updates was a lamp I painted. Buying a new lamp base and shade at a store can add up. What I like to do is buy my lamps at a thrift store. All the ones I have gotten have been from goodwill. I always buy the brass lamps. The brass lamps are dated, but often have a great silhouette and are inexpensive. With just a little spray paint they can be updated!

I loved the shape of this lamp, and I scored it on a day when all blue tags were $1.29.

Don't mind the spray paint on the bottom. I started spraying the lamp THEN remembered I needed to take a picture.

After a light sanding with 220 grit sandpaper (just to rough it up for the paint to stick), I wiped it off to ensure the surface was clean from any dust and dirt. Then I sprayed it with a turquoise/blue-ish color spray paint (the one I used is from Lowes and is only a couple of bucks). Make sure to use multiple light coats. If the paint is sprayed on too thick, it will drip. Read the back of the can for more directions. Lastly I added a shade I already had. I got it a couple months ago from Target. I have also found good, clean lampshades at goodwill since they sometimes get brand new merchandise from stores such as Target.

Now the lamp is colorful and looks brand new!

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

DIY Tufted Ottoman (Part 1)

For the past few months I have been seeing many posts on DIY tufted ottomans. Buying one can cost anywhere from $500 to $2000! Here is one I found. It is no longer available, but when it was it cost $695. Crazy.

I stumbled upon this DIY tufted ottoman and thought I might be able to pull it off. So, I was on the hunt for a cheap coffee table I could make into my own ottoman (for my mom). We found one at a garage sale for $7, and snatched it up!

The top is all scuffed, dented, and carved by some kids, but it works for this project since that part will be covered.

Yesterday I sanded that legs of the coffee table and the side strips. I was not sure how far down the fabric will go, and wanted to be on the safe side. I used some dark brown, semi-gloss paint from other projects my mom has done. All of our extra paint comes in handy!

Next up is drilling holes (this will require math... not excited for that), covering the top with foam, batting, and fabric, and then comes tufting, and finally the nail-head trim. I have no guarantees that this will stay the same as I continue on, but hopefully it will go smoothly.

I will update you when I have finished the tufted ottoman (or partly finished) and any of the other projects I am currently working on! Check back soon!

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