Furniture

Before & After: Child’s Desk

One of the big furniture projects I recently tackled was an overhaul of a kids’s desk. I found this awesome desk at a thrift store, but boy did it need some love.

Child's Desk_Before

I immediately had grand visions for this desk and let me tell you, they didn’t include the mermaid blue, shabby shic look.

So I painted, painted and painted some more. Again, I used a flat white paint and mixed in some Paint Minerals. This stuff gives the paint a chalky finish to it and leaves the surface very smooth. So far, I’m really pleased with how the Paint Minerals works with the paint. You don’t need to sand or prime and it covers really well.

I wanted the book shelves on each side of the piece to pop, so I painted a metallic glaze inside each shelf and then wiped each shelf down with a rag. It created a messy-ish sort of look in each cubby that I really like.

For the top, I painted with a gray-brown chalkboard paint. Some kid is gonna love this desk.

I waxed the whole piece using Johnson Paste Wax. This was my first time using a furniture wax and it left my piece feeling so smooth to the touch.

Check out these after pictures:

Love.

Child's Desk

Love.

Child's Desk Open

Love.Child's Desk shelves

I think this desk was definitely transformed for the better.

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Craft Projects

Driftwood and Sea Glass chime

My girlfriends and I got together for craft night last weekend, and, as always, we had a great time. Carrie came up with the idea to make driftwood and sea glass chimes (if you can call them that).  After a delicious dinner and a bottle of wine, we began to tackle our craft.

We started with individual pieces of driftwood that Carrie collected on a family vacation. Apparently she was teased for collecting the wood — I think it was a fabulous idea, don’t you?

Sea Glass driftwood

Once we picked which piece of wood we wanted, I got started on mine. Originally, I started to make mine with fishing wire. I got really frustrated with that, so I made mine with wire and chain. So to start my chime, I wrapped wire around each end of the driftwood and secured it around itself to create a hook to hang the finished chime from. Carrie and Amy used twine for this, and it worked great. It also looked really nice.

Like I said, I started mine with fishing wire. We watched a tutorial from Martha Stewart, and even she commented that the fishing wire was a pain. Clearly she, Carrie and Amy all have more patience than I do, because they made it work. I think the reason our wire wasn’t super easy to work with was because it was a bit thicker, so if you want to try this project on your own, I definitely recommend using a thin fishing line.

If you want to use fishing line, Carrie and Amy both did theirs differently. Carrie tied knots around each piece of sea glass and sealed the knot with super glue. Amy, on the other hand, avoided the knots and simply glued the wire to the glass with the super glue. She said one piece fell off at home, but it is holding up well.

Sea Glass

Like I said, I got sick of the fishing wire and the knots, so I broke out the jewelry wire and chain. Sometimes working with a familiar material is just better.

After I created a handle to the driftwood, I lined the sea glass up in an ombre pattern. I ended up only using half of these, but you get the idea.

Sea Glass1

Then, I wrapped each piece of sea glass with wire, creating a loop at the top to attach it to the chain.

Sea Glass2

Once all of my glass was wrapped with wire, I attached each piece to one of my three chain strands. Then, to finish the chime, I attached the chain to the piece of driftwood using jewelry wire.

Sorry for the cruddy picture and the not-so-in-depth tutorial. It’s a girls’ night first and foremost, so blogging has to come second!

Anyway, here’s the finished product!

Sea Glass finished

I love the colors of the glass, and now I want to go hunting for drift wood and real sea glass (these were from Michaels).

Sea Glass chime

Have a great day!

Home Improvement, Paint

Chevron Accent Wall

Last night I was beyond hyper and spontaneously decided to tackle my faux backsplash/accent wall in my laundry room. I think my spontaneity was key in the project, otherwise I would have over thought everything from the design to the colors.

I have seen so many designs online lately for accent walls: quatrefoil, shell, stripes, chevron… you name it, it’s been done. In my cracked out state, I went with a segmented chevron pattern and I LOVE IT. Also, it was way easy. Way.

I was too into groovin’ to my sweet tunes last night to take a ton of photos (imagine a quality mix of Bohemian rhapsody, Baby got back and Beloved)  but here’s the gist of what I did: I wanted the wall color to show through my pattern so it tied the accent wall into the rest of the space, so using 1″ tape I taped vertical stripes on my wall with no intention of filling them in. I spaced my lines out using a small level as my measurement. Honestly, I did this to avoid doing math. It’s about 9″ wide and was a perfect spacer. It also doubled as a level — go figure. I made sure my lines were pretty darn straight. They weren’t perfect, but they were mostly straight.

Then, I started to create my chevron pattern. I grabbed a pen and started marking my tape where other pieces of tape needed to intersect. Again, I used my level as a spacer. I placed it at the top of my cabinet and marked at the bottom, continuing until it wouldn’t fit anymore. I did this for all of the tape, then connected the dots.

Here’s a fun tip — if and when you run out of your painter’s tape, and if you just so happen to have masking tape or washi tape in the same width, you can use it as a substitute for painter’s tape. Yes, this happened. I was sad to paint over my mint tape, but didn’t want to lost my awesome energy and stamina with the project so I made the sacrifice.

{A Smith of All Trades} Chevron wall taped up

With my pattern taped and ready to paint, I started to apply my paint colors: metallic gold (Thanks, Martha!) and ivory/manilla. I originally was going to do something with bolder pops of color, but went for the metallic paint as my bold choice. I also was going to add a third color, but my pattern only took up so much room and the third color probably wouldn’t have added anything to it.

{A Smith of All Trades} Chevron wall taped up and painted

I painted two coats of each color onto the stripes before removing all of the tape.

*Drumroll*

{A Smith of All Trades} Chevron wall

Love love love love love love love. Love. Had I thought this project out more, I probably would have gone with a mint or teal chevron stripe, but I am so glad I didn’t. I think the gold tones play off the countertop wonderfully, and make the gray cabinets pop even more.

I started this project after dinner at 5:30(ish) and was cleaning up at 7:30 p.m. — not to bad for the fabulous result!

BEFORE:

{A Smith of All Trades} Laundry Room

AFTER:{A Smith of All Trades} Chevron wall again