Wednesday, January 29, 2014

New Desk

Can I just start out by saying that we have some of the best neighbors ever?!

We do.  Meet Rhett, Emily, and Gus Gus. 

My kids love to go over to their house and come home with a treat or pocket full of candy, visit with them, watch Emily cook, go to "Rhett's Ranch", and constantly ring their doorbell to walk or play with their dog Gus.  They are the kind of friends/neighbors that drive 30 minutes to sit in a 1 1/2 hr dance recital just to support your daughter, and then drive around trying to find a place open late enough for ice cream. ;) 

They even give away nice furniture...

LOVE this new, completely SOLID desk they gave us.  

You can see our previous one fit perfect in the loft of our other house:

Unfortunately, when we moved it ended up being too small for the new space...but last on our priorities to replace. - 

Now, the new desk fills the space much better, and has more room to store things (and more junk :).

We have been blessed to have lived around so many wonderful people, and are incredibly grateful for those that make living in this neighborhood and community so amazing.  Thanks Rhett & Emily, we love it!!!

Monday, January 27, 2014

Client Pillows; Mixing Different Patterns

Mixing patterns can be stressful; however, you must remember that they don't always have to "match" to go together.

I just recently finished finding fabric and making pillows for a client of mine.  We wanted five different fabrics, and wanted to pull in coral/orange & turquoise colors into the room. 

Here is what we ended up with - 

The combination turned out great with the rest of her room!

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Simple Chair Makeover - Deciding When to Recover & When Not To

A few months ago, I did a consult in trade for two upholstered chairs that my friend was going to replace.  

Originally, I thought I would recover the chairs.  However, once I got them home and mulled over it, I decided that recovering them just didn't seem like the best route to go.

Back in 2012 I recovered this chair for another one my friends -



If you click here you can see the tutorial and process it took to recover it. 

As you can see in the before picture, the chair fabric was outdated and definitely not neutral for the lighter tones she was decorating with.  

Here is the picture of one of the two matching chairs I was working with -

Unlike my friends chair, this one was already covered in a neutral fabric.  The chair itself was in really good condition, the fabric was clean, and had no rips or tears.  I just couldn't come up with any good reasons why I should spend hours and hours and hours, and a gazillion staples later...just to get the same chair with a slightly different neutral fabric. 

However, the style wasn't quite modern enough for me and I spent some time thinking how I could change things up.

I love nail-head trim so I thought that would be a good start.  The other thing that bothered me was the "T" cushion you sit against.  It just wasn't working for me, but my husband said the chair wasn't comfortable without it. :/  (I know, I know, I already told him decorating goes with the saying, "beauty is pain"...didn't fly). So, I took that "T" cushion and sewed it into a plain square. 

Here is what I ended up with! -

I used 5 packs of nail-head trim, bringing my total to $10.

Not a bad price for a 'new to me' piece of furniture. :)

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

DIY Stair Banister Tutorial - Part 2, Replacing the Spindles and Finishing Info

You can find Part One Here

Let me start off by saying that this is how I did it and it worked for me; however, I tend to kind of make things up as I go.  There are several tutorials out there that you might find more helpful than the way I did it.
To replace the spindles I started by removing the old ones.  To do this I took my Jigsaw and cut right through them on the smallest part of the spindle. - 

Next I cut the top of the spindle off  (where there is no varnish, making it flush with the rail when inserted) with my miter saw and used liquid nails to glue it back up inside the top rail.  I did this to have some solid wood for my screw to go into when I put the new spindle in. -

To remove the bottom of the old spindle I had to unscrew it off of this screw - 

We purchased our new square spindles from Home Depot for about $4 each.  I cut them to the desired length I needed them to fit between the top and bottom.  Next, I found the center on one end and drilled a hole into it so that it can be screwed into the screw pictured above.
(yes, I do know that I didn't quite hit my center below :)

Lastly, I used my Kreg Jig to make a pocket hole on the opposite end of where I drilled the other hole:

I added Liquid Nails to both ends and screwed the spindle on to the bottom screw.  Once in place, I put a 2 1/2 inch pocket hole screw in the top attaching it to the top railing.

After doing this a gazillion times, you have new spindles!

I caulked the spindles on the top and bottom, and used wood pocket hole plugs and wood filler to fill in my pocket holes.

I painted the newel post, bottom rails, and spindles a latex white in satin that matches the rest of the molding in my house.  

For the top rails and hand rail, I sanded them and then made sure I got everything wiped down very well.  After covering and taping off everything but the rails,  I used General Finishes Gel Stain in Java and General Finishes Poly/Acrylic Satin (you can also buy it at Four Chairs in Lindon if you are local).
I saw and used a great tutorial from Confessions for a Semi-Domesticated Mama on how to use it.

This stuff is seriously amazing to work with, and it goes a LONG way too!

DIY Stair Banister Tutorial - Part 1, Building Around Existing Newel Post

The Before:

The After:

Here is how I did it for $150...The existing newel post (the large post on the end) was super strong and sturdy and I didn't want to disrupt that.  I also didn't want to pay $100 for a new Craftsman style newel post; however, they do have them at Home Depot if you decide to go that route.  I decided building around the existing newel post would be the best option, it would keep it strong and keep the cost down.  

I cut out the following for one newel post:

(x2 of 3/4" MDF) 4" x 18"
(x2 of 3/4" MDF) 5.5" x 18"
(x2 of 1/4" MDF) 4" x 32"
(x2 of 1/4" MDF) 3.5" x 32"
(x2 of 1/4" MDF) 3.5" x 4"
(x2 of 1/4" MDF) 4" x 4"

Start by placing the 1/8" 32" long pieces around the base of the newel post.  I liquid nailed the edges and added supports on the inside with wood scraps and paint sticks, then nailed them to the post from the outside. 

Next I enclosed it and used clamps while the glue dried (make sure you nail it into the existing post as well). -

Next add the 3/4" 18" long pieces to the bottom, glue and nail in. -

Then liquid nail and clamp the small 1/8" pieces together.  After it set and dried for a while I added some small finishing nails to the sides for a little added strength. -

I purchased this cap in the outdoor fence section of Home Depot and liquid nailed it to the top of my box. - 

Then, I added some more glue inside and nail gunned it to the "ball" on the top of my existing newel post.  Now you are ready for molding! -

The molding for the two middle pieces, I used a cove and panel molding.  Here is the specific info for both of those:
Panel SD186 HEM 1/2 x 1 -1/16
Cove WM100 HEM 11/16 x 11/16

This small molding below I found in those little bin sections with other small molding that comes about 3 feet long. -

I added it below the base of the top box. -

Now with all the molding on you can caulk and use wood filler to fill in all nail holes and wood seams. -

Part two - I will show you how to replace the spindles and what I used to finish it.

This post is linked up to:

TDC Before and After

Savvy Southern Style

Before & After DIY Stair Railing Makeover Reveal

When we were looking at homes last winter I fell in love with all the craftsman stair rails and knew it was a look that I wanted in our next home.  Immediately after settling in to our home I got a bid to replace this short stairway to our basement.  Unfortunately, the $900 didn't fit my budget.  After seven months of thinking about how I could create it myself for less...I did, and it came to $120. :)



Tutorial -
Part One
Part Two