Aug 31, 2010

Poster Bed Find

This may sound weird to a non-DIYer...but this poster bed find made my year! 

I consider myself lucky for two reasons.  One, because yours truly actually stumbled across this.  And two, I found this ON MY LUNCH BREAK!!!  I know, I're jealous :)~  I rarely leave the office on my lunch break so I consisder myself super special.

When I laid eyes on this bed I would have bet money that someone else had already bought it.  I thought to myself, "There's NO WAY that bad boy hasn't been purchased yet.  It's waaay to special!"  It was sort of off to the side too- almost as if someone had intentionally tried to keep it out of eye sight.  Well my friends, I scored this beauty for $54 buckaroos.  I know, I hate me!

Here's the poster bed at Impact Thrift Store at the time it caught my eyes.  It's hard to tell from this picture but the bed was actually off to the side a ways- seperated from the other bedroom furniture.

At first, I debated painting the bed becase the wood was in such great condition and had so much shine.
Here's the bed  when we got it home.  I had to go back to the thrift store with Rob and pick it up several days after I purchased it because it wouldn't fit into my teeny car.

This is the bed after one coat of paint.  I'd like to apologize for the awful cellphone picture quality.  As I mentioned somewhere on my blog before, at the time I started alot of my DIY projects I didn't know I'd be blogging about them today- otherwise I'd have nicer pics to share :)

 To check out the poster bed, in its finished glory, click here and scroll down.

Rob and I sanded the poster bed with a medium coarse sandpaper until the surface was roughed up pretty well. Then, we used a finer sandpaper to smooth out the wood surfaces. Finally, I painted the poster bed with a black semi-gloss paint. I wanted the bed to really look nice and thought that by using a paint with some shine would do the trick.

When I bought this bed I was so excited I didn't realize that the bed frame was sold separately.  I snagged a frame at the same thrift store for $10.00.  All said and done, our guest poster bed only put us back $97 with materials.  Actually, that's way ahead in my book- my budget loves me!!! 
Not too shabby, right? I hope you like.


Aug 30, 2010

You're Painting WHAT???

That's how the Lowe's employees at the paint counter reacted when I told them, "I'm painting my carpet." As I write about it now, and actually process that statement, I totally get why they reacted the way they did. To some, that's just CRAZINESS!
If you're like me, always searching for thrifty ways to spruce up dated household items, I want you to know that painting a carpet is a piece of cake.

I first got the idea when I came across a post, here, on ApartmentTherapy. Stacie is the name of the talented woman who used spray paint on her area rug. Several weeks later, I came across another woman who blogged about painting a carpet. Only this woman used actual paint.

After reading up on this, and seeing that lots of folks have successfully did it, I set out to paint my very own carpet. And lucky for me, Rob's mom gave us an IKEA hand-me-down rug several months prior that I used as my blank canvas. I didn't feel bad about painting the carpet because it had minor stains and spots on it - which actually is a perfect excuse for you to paint your old area rug, too!

So, here's what I won't believe how easy (and inexpensive) this was.

Here is the carpet in our family room BEFORE I painted it:

An employee at Lowe's recommended I use "Porch & Floor" paint. She said this type of paint is more durable, made to be walked on, and that it will last longer. And since I had never done this before- I took her word for it!
  1. Paint (shown above) $10.98
  2. Painter's Tape $3.28
  3. Small Roller $2.18
Fortunately, the rug has small squares and a border that is woven on it- so the pattern was super easy to follow.

I outlined the squares and border with the painter's tape and painted away!
 What a difference! And what a great way to liven up the room, don't you think?

After I completed this project, I came across some awesome area rugs, here, by Thomas Paul that I think I'll have to replicate one day in the future. Check em' out for yourself - these are great inspiration patterns.

Weekend Bloggy Reading
I linked up at Amanda's Weekend  Bloggy Reading from Serenity Now, check it out HERE.

Aug 25, 2010

For Our Special Guests

I'm so happy to tell you that I just finished a makeover on a dresser and nightstand for my guest bedroom.  After I found the super chic poster bed for this room at a local thrift shop [on my lunch break] I knew I could definitely find the perfect dresser and nightstand too!

About a month ago, Rob was randomly searching around the furniture section on Craigs List when he came across a couldn't-be-more-perfect set for our guest bedroom.  The best part about it was that seller literally lived around the corner from us.  Well actually, the best part about it was that we scored both pieces for one hundo dollars- Cha Ching!!!!

Here's what the pieces looked like when we picked up the furniture

These are the draws I removed from the dresser while I was preparing for the sand down

As you can see above, the wood was badly warped from condensation- but nothing a good sanding job wouldn't take care of.

Our first step was to sand all surfaces with an extra coarse 60 sandpaper .

The course 60 sandpaper worked really well to break through the glossy top coat and in roughing up the wood surface.  Once all surfaces were sanded, we used a very fine 180 sandpaper to smooth out the wood and prepare the surface for painting.

When the sanding was complete, and all surfaces were as smooth as a baby's you know what, we wiped everything really well with a tact cloth.  Tact cloths are great beacause they're really sticky and do a very good job in wiping off all the fine wood particles.

Next step was to paint a primer coat- I chose a latex primer because at the time I wasn't in the mood to deal with the messy clean-up involved with an oil based.  We let the primer dry over night. 

Finally, we painted the pieces with two coats of a black semi-gloss paint.  I chose this type of paint because I thought that the added shine of a semi-gloss would give these peices the extra umph they needed.  Also, I used a semi-gloss on my poster bed and I wanted the finishes to match.

And here's how they turned out

All said and done, this very thrifty dresser and nightstand combo cost us $140.00. 

Aug 15, 2010

Curtain Alternative

I can honestly say that there are only about four things that I salvaged (temporarily) in our townhouse when we bought it - and one of those things was the curtain that covered our back door.   

When we were painting our family room I burnt a big hole in the curtain with a light bulb from a (shadeless) lamp I was using for extra light.  You'd think the big hole in my curtain would be the motivation I needed to buy a new one.  Um no.  I let the curtain hang on the door for another six months. 

Two weeks ago, I measured the window and finally went to BED BATH & BEYOND for a new curtain.  Bought one, brought it home, started to hang it...and I realized it didn't fit.  Ugh. 

That's when I started thinking about what kind of curtain alternatives there are.  And then, I  remembered there was such a thing as frosted glass spray paint...and I've always wanted to use this stuff!!!  Now I had a reason to!

Here's what I did:
Two days before the idea for this project popped into my head I purchased this DURA-LAR paper below at Michael's craft store.  I bought the durable (and washable) material to make stencils for my curtain makeover project (currently in progress).

I used the DURA-LAR and craft knife shown above to make my stencil. I knew I wanted to do circles (easy breezy. modern. fun. nice looking.) so I searched around the house for a circular object to trace. I outlined one of the panels on the back door so I knew how much space I had to work with. A tea light turned out to be the best item to trace.

I used a ruler to draw straight lines- this was helpful in making sure my circles also stayed in a straight line while tracing.  Once my circles were traced, I used a craft knife to cut the circles out.
Here is my stencil after the circles were cut out.  See how perfect it fits into the panel area.

The only other materials I purchased for this project was double sided tape and Valspar frosting spray paint.

This is our back door BEFORE.
This picture shows how I used the double sided tape.  The tape was great for ensuring that the stencil stuck to the glass closely, in order to prevent the spray paint from bleeding.
The back door AFTER.
Here is another shot of the back door shown in a different light. 
This is a shot of the door from the outside looking in at night time.  This curtain alternative provides the right amount of privacy we need, while still allowing an abundance of sun to shine through. 

Aug 4, 2010

Now That's a Stinky Job

My mom was coming to ring in 2010 with us so I wanted as many things as possible to be perfect.  I had just finished our guest bedroom and it was about that time when I'd start itching for a new project.  The decision to demolition our hall bathroom was made 10 days before my mom was expected to arrive.  All I had to do was get Rob on board...and being the good hubby that he was, he was game.

Here's our bathroom on December 21, 2009:
This is the old stinker

Ugly old sink and counter top

God awful paint and border
Here's a couple demolition shots:

At the time we were working on this bathroom I didn't know I'd be blogging about my home improvement adventures - so my apologies for not providing step-by-step instructions and pictures.  I'd love to answer your questions about what we did and how if you'd like to shoot me an email :)

Here's our bathroom on December 29, 2010:

Quick run down of what we did:
We smashed the old tile flooring and literally beat down the old wood cabinet with a hammer (great stress reliever).  Then, we spackled, and spackled, and spackled, and spackled and sanded even more.  Next, we painted.  After that we installed new tile flooring.  Finally, we installed a new towel rack, light fixture, cabinet and sink, mirror and toilet (pee-you).