Are you still in a chocolate candy induced coma from Valentine’s Day? I hope you had an enjoyable holiday! Pip’s was a little brighter because her grade had a Valentine’s box contest for their party, and she tied for the “Most Creative” with this DIY Puppy Dog Valentine Box. I got the idea from Pinterest, but I couldn’t find any instructions for the actual construction, so we winged it. I know that it is too late to use this for this year, but you can always pin it for future use
Full disclosure: This is not hard, but it takes a LONG time to make!! I think I spent over 3 hours on it, and Pip was helping too! Here’s how we started out: Read More…
An upholstered footstool is one of the gifts that I made for Pip for Christmas this year, in my quest to have one room in this house completely finished up. This is part of how I made it–I say part, because I think I deleted the building part of the pictures…oops! It is so simple though, you really don’t need anything but a picture to put it together. And I used scrap plywood and miscellaneous supplies from my sewing room, so it was free.
See what I mean? This was a very easy project. I had put together the bench part before I started on the living room built-in, but I finished the rest of this in the midst of my general-Christmas-madness-combined-with-starting-a-major-project brilliance. I will once again beg all of you to remind me that I should not start major projects during the holiday season next year!
I left the edges of the plywood unfinished–I just filled some spots where there were little voids in the ply with wood putty and sanded really well. Two coats of primer and 1 coat of my white. I did do two thin coats of polycrylic since I had it out already for the living room built in. I really like the smooth finish I end up with when I use it.
Here are the steps I used to upholster the top.
If you use a pocket hole jig to assemble cabinet doors, you are left with holes on the back of the door that can be seen. This may not bother you, and I decided it didn’t on Pip’s built-ins for her room because I didn’t want to deal with it and it wasn’t going to be seen by many. For the living room built-in, I decided I needed to do something about them. Using the plugs that Kreg makes is an option, but Kreg intentionally leaves them long so you can trim them for an exact fit. I decided that if I needed to trim them anyway, I’d do it a little cheaper. Here’s my DIY pocket hole plug jig.
Here’s a picture of one of the doors I put into the built-in for the living room. I actually didn’t mean to construct them this way…I meant to do it the same way I constructed the drawer fronts on Pip’s closet organizer. But I remembered that after I had already routered the edges on all the 1x3s I used for the rails and stiles. Oops. Constructing them this way makes it more difficult to assemble the door perfectly square and end up with cuts that meet exactly right on the corners.
One door was perfect and it was the one I did second. For that door I assembled 3 corners, and then used the clamps in the picture to square up the door before screwing in the pocket holes for the last corner. To make sure the door is square, you measure the diagonal corners–each measurement should be the same. If not, adjust the clamps until they are. The one that I did first, and didn’t square it up with the clamps before attaching the last corner, did not turn out exactly square…I had to shave off the top edge. Next time I construct a door or drawer front that is going to be inset, I’ll plan on making it a little oversized so I can shave it down to perfect (thanks for that hint Dennis!)
Now onto the pocket hole plug jig. First step is to take a piece of scrap and drill the pocket holes into both ends. I used my miter saw to shave off some of the ends of the boards after I drilled the holes, so that the screws could move freely without catching on the wood. Don’t take off too much though, then the screw falls right through the hole (I did that the first try…). Put screws into each pocket hole. Read More…
Ahhh, crown moulding. How I covet thee. I want to put it everywhere in this house, but it seems so hard!! This was my first attempt at any kind of crown. Up until now, every built-in I have done has been capped off with casing (I think…or it is base…either way, it hasn’t been crown). I’m pretty happy with how it turned out on this project, so I’m not as afraid to give it a go in other places now. Here’s how I went about it!
First I did some research after I discovered that I wasn’t sure which way was up. If you read my little rant, you already know that apparently other people don’t know which way is up either. I had a little bit of a sticky situation though…I didn’t have much room before I hit a corner, and the crown I had picked out takes up more room depending on how you put it up. Lucky for me it worked out.
The research said that the bottom of crown most times has the more decorative elements. Also, the crown should take up more space on the wall than it does on the ceiling (that is what saved me from having to apply mine upside down–it gave me enough room before I hit the corner of the wall). This is all in general–it might not be applicable in every instance. Just don’t ask anyone who knows anything about crown to come into your house and you’ll be fine either way (I crack myself up sometimes).
Anyone interested in coming in and refinishing my floors for me? Anyone? Bueller? Bueller? (Who can name that movie?) Look how scratched up they are–and I want them a much darker color now. Uggh. I don’t look forward to that project.
During my research, I read this article from DIY Network.com where they put base moulding on upside down before the crown to build it up. I loved it, so I did the same thing on mine.
But it kinda ended up being a good thing I had planned on this. I originally had a top to the cabinet that was separate that I was going to add between the cabinet and the shelves. Then I made a big mistake and had to modify the plans, but the separate top was 1.5″ thick and I already left 2″ of clearance at the top. That meant there was only air to attach the crown to on the cabinet and that wasn’t going to work. The upside base gave me something to work with!
When we built our house we decided that we would do all the interior painting to save some dollars…but then decided we would paint all the walls and ceilings and hire out the trim. That was a very wise decision, because not only did we save a bunch of time (and our marriage), but we got to know our painter and he taught me two very valuable things I still use to this day.
1. Blue painters tape is A.W.E.S.O.M.E. I don’t know how I ever lived without it. That may be a slight exaggeration–I can live without it, but it is still pretty fantastic. I have got a pretty steady hand when I am trimming a room, but nothing can match the crisp line you get with painter’s tape around all moulding. One word of warning, however: I tried using it on my ceiling once, and it pulled up the paint on the ceiling (It was not fresh paint). I have no idea why, but it did. I now trim at the ceiling with a steady hand and no tape.
2. Stu, our painter, taught me that if you are painting with any sheen other than flat, you must keep a wet edge until you come to a corner or end. When you start a wall, you need to keep going on that wall for its whole surface corner to corner, top to bottom because if you don’t, the sheen will be uneven. In other words, don’t put your roller extension on and paint the entire top part of the room, take off the extension, and roll the rest of the room–stick to one wall at a time. Here’ s a picture example from my house where for some reason we painted a portion of the wall and left part for another time. I think it was because of having to paint by the ceiling on the stairs.
Not a great picture since it was really low light, but you can see to the right of the door, how it shows the edge we let dry before finishing painting that wall. Same paint, same sheen (eggshell).
I also make sure that I do all the cutting-in, trim painting first and then roll, and roll as close to the ceiling and other edges as I can. Don’t worry about a wet edge from the cutting in. I haven’t noticed sheen differences from any of that in my other rooms, and little things like that generally are blaring, thorns-in-my-side if they show up All of this applies to any painting you do–a cabinet side will show sheen differences too.This will mean that any touch-ups you do in a room with paint besides flat, will show up in sheen differences also, unfortunately. So keep anything like that as small as you can–don’t use a paintbrush when a Q-tip will work.
I hope these tips help you achieve a professional looking paint job in your home!
I promised plans today and here they are! Hopefully I’ll be seeing how a sheet of plywood fits into a Honda Pilot today. A Home Depot employee and I had a discussion on this matter several months ago, and he assured me that the old model Pilot fit a sheet with no troubles, while the newest version fits a sheet, but just barely. We traded on our 12 year old van for a Pilot in July–the Honda salesman was a little bewildered by my interest in fitting lumber in the trunk We bought the old model, so hopefully no worries.
I’ve kept the pictures at a large size so that you can click on them to enlarge and see the dimensions better. I don’t know if that will work, but we’ll try it out.
Obviously this is not to scale. As a general rule I like to use graph paper and get it somewhat to scale so I am not surprised by how the project ends up appearing. Today I am walking on the wild side.
And here goes the disclaimer: Use these plans at your own risk!! I already modified some dimensions, that affected other dimensions, and although I think I did a good job going back and making the changes, I’m not guaranteeing that!! From here on out I’ll be in the garage and lucky if I remember to take the pictures I need, much less jot down the corrections to the mistakes I’ll probably find.
I always feel better after saying all that, ha ha. But the changes I made allowed me to utilize the entire sheet of 3/4″ plywood more effectively, just by shaving off 1/4″ of the width on the sides of the hutch (which also changed the width on the shelves). I went and measured some of her books, and 10.25″ is plenty of width for even the biggest ones she has. I am using up some various pieces of scrap ply I’ve got from other projects, for the sides of all 6 drawers–love using up scrap! I would have preferred to use 1/2″ ply for the drawers, but I’d rather utilize the entire sheet, so 3/4″ it is.
There you’ve got it! I’ll be trying out my brand-spanking new Kreg Rip Cut on this, as well as the Kreg shelf pin jig. I got those back in June/July for my birthday, if you recall. Sad that it has taken me this long to break them out of their packaging, but I can’t wait to use them now!
I discovered, as I was completing my teaching degree in recent years, that one of the state standards for Ohio’s school children is teaching them the difference between a “want” and a “need”. Many people in our great country have got problems with this concept IMHO and although I feel that I have pretty much mastered it, at times I may slip. Like when I mentioned on my Facebook page that I might need a digital SLR camera. This would, in fact, be a want not a need. But I have been wanting one for quite a while now, I had some Christmas money + other money I’d been squirreling away, and I finally bit the bullet and bought one. And now I need a camera bag and I want it to be pretty. So I made one. Because OMG are the pretty ones expensive.
Pinterest had a plethora of choices for a DIY bag. I pinned four onto my Photography board, but the one I chose was from VanillaAndLace.blogspot.com. Some of the tutorials actually put the foam pieces under the purse liner, which was kinda cool, but I want the option of removing. And I loved her purse/fabric combo. Here’s mine:
The purse I chose was a Nine West. Now I am not a fashion diva, although you may think that from this post, so I’m not quite sure the original price tag of $72 was accurate, but I paid $24.99 at Burlington Coat Factory. Read More…