We are a young couple remodeling our first house...one outdated / ugly thing at a time. This blog documents our remodel projects and ideas.
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7.30.2011

DIY Pallet Bed Frame

The post title pretty much says it all - I made a bed frame from pallets. Best part is that the pallets were free! Love free stuff and love repurposing. And before you tell me about the bad chemicals in pallets, I'm gonna say - not these pallets! They are certified clean of the bad stuff.

Anyways, I'm getting a little off topic.I have been seeing a lot of things made from pallets lately. And I got inspired to make a day bed frame since we sold the queen size bed in the guest room and down-sized to a full. The pallets I used were jumbo size - 54 x 40. Most pallets are 48 x 40. And since a full size mattress is 54 x 75, these pallets were made for repurposing into a bed frame. Too many numbers there? Sorry, just fast-forward to the pics below.

To make the bed frame, I first laid the pallets out on the ground to measure. Then I marked where I was going to cut. And then I used my saw to cut them. That finger is my friend pointing to the cut line. He helped me move the pallets too. Thanks Josh!


Next I pried apart the discarded cut piece to salvage the support board. I could have cut a new support board...but why? I would rather save my pennies and get an arm work-out in the 100 degree weather. After I fought with the pallet, I squeezed the support board into the cut area to hold up the top.

Then I nailed in the salvaged support board to the cut pallet. After that, which was a pain since I always use a drill, we moved the pallets into the guest room. And to protect the mattress from the bare wood, I used the bed skirt as a barrier.


So there is my free DIY bed frame. And I have already made the new "headboard" for the day bed. Just have to repair a few little holes in the wall from where the panel headboard was secured. Oh - and the Habitat for Humanity is taking the panel headboard. They are going to auction it off in their Restore & After fundraiser!

I am making some progress in the guest room now. The large queen bed has been replaced with a full size mattress that I am using as a day bed. Next I need to figure out the desk situation. I love the desk I built, but I don't think it is the best solution for the room anymore.

7.27.2011

RTH House Crashes - Literally

When my BFF got stuck in a rut on her house remodel, I lent my DIY helping hand to the remodel...at the cost of the projects being on the blog. We have all had it happen to us - start out strong on a remodel project and then get busy with life and the remodel takes a back burner (happens to me all the time). This was no different, but she was soooo close to finishing and I am thrilled to help out.

With girl power in full swing, we tackled her bathroom, more specifically the open linen closet. There used to be cabinets in the space by the shower, but she wanted something different instead of the closed up cabinets. An open closet was the perfect solution. She had already done the hard work - floating the wall and painting. I just came in at the last minute to help install shelves.

First we cut 2x2 boards to use as supports. And then we cut the plywood for the shelves. Then we sanded and primed the boards. Then we marked the lines in the closet where she wanted the shelves. Next we drilled pilot holes into the 2x2 boards so they wouldn't crack. Then, finally, we screwed in the 2x2's:

We kept a small level on the 2x2 at all times to make sure that it stayed level. And then we just kept screwing in the 2x2's on the previously marked lines and ended up with this:

Looks a little like a ladder. Finally, we laid the plywood boards on top of the 2x2's and high-fived each other! Looks like an open linen closet to me:

Go girl power! All that is left is to paint these little shelves and then call it done!

7.25.2011

You Asked, I'm Answering

Hey y'all! I received a lot of sweet emails with some great questions and I'm here to spill all of the juicy details. Well, not juicy. Just matter-of-fact answers. So, let's get this show on the road.

What is your can't live without tool?
Hmmm...that is difficult. I use my drill the most, so I guess that is the answer.

What is your beauty routine? Or something similar - favorite makeup, go-to products , etc.
Ha! No beauty routines here. The only thing I do that is not really common (but it isn't a secret) is that I wash my hair with conditioner, no shampoo. Google will enlighten you about conditioner-only washes. And products I love - C.O. Bigelow lip gloss, Cover FX makeup, and coconut oil for my hair. That's it, but the list is subject to change at anytime.

Your husband, what does he think about the remodel?
Well, he is just along for the ride.  He never knows what he will come home to - a remodeled bathroom, a new piece of furniture, a torn-up floor, new paint, etc. He says he doesn't care, but I secretly think he loves it.

Why remodeling? Your house is great!
True, it is a great house. Call me crazy, but remodeling is fun to me...hence, remodeling the house. I would work on any house, even a brand new one.

Is your house a forever-house?
No, not even close. It is our first house. And we are both ready to move closer to his work. Hopefully we will be selling and buying next year.

Favorite project?
I have never been asked this. I think it is the living room since that is where we spend most of our time. Replacing the carpet with hardwood, tearing out the built ins, and revamping the fireplace made huge improvements.

How long have you and the hubby been together?
6 years dating + almost 6 year married = 12 years. We were high school sweethearts and I guess he never got tired of my crazy antics because he is still around.

Do you make inspiration boards?
Not for myself, but I love to make them for other people. I have a general idea of what I want the finished room to look like, but usually I just wing it and see what happens. So far I haven't redone anything. Are you in need of one? I can whip you up something!

Have you ever had to hire someone to do a project?
Hmmm...does having the counter tops installed count? The installation was free with the purchase! Or does having family help count? Those are the only two things that I can think of. We have never paid someone for their work...unless you count food for the family.

Where is that floor plan you promised?
It's in the works... Who am I kidding? I haven't started on it. But it is on the list of things-to-do. So one day I'll get around to it.

If I count correctly, that is 10 questions and 10 answers. There were a few other questions that came in, but I just replied and answered them - things like paint colors, where I got something, etc. Maybe this helped answer some of your burning questions. If not, feel free to ask away. I love to talk!

7.24.2011

Cabinet Door Memo Board

A quick little project to gain some much needed memo board / note space...and it is all hidden behind a cabinet door. This project really came in handy after I removed my memo board from the laundry room to paint the funky stripes. Instead of putting the board back on the wall, I repurposed the inside of a kitchen cabinet door into a memo board. (Gee, how many times can I say memo board in one post?!)

All you need to make this is some cork, scissors or exacto knife, and spray glue. And, of course, a cabinet door. This is my spice cabinet.

First, trim the cork to the needed size. I roughly measured a little larger than needed. Then I held the cork up and used the exacto knife to get an exact fit.

Next, spray the glue onto the cabinet door where the cork will be placed. Finally, place the cork onto the glue and hold in place for a few seconds.

Yay for hidden storage! Now fill the space up with pictures, mementos, business cards, etc. This project works well for my cabinet doors because they are paneled and the cork fits snugly. A bonus is that I get to see smiling faces when I open my spice cabinet - not everyone gets to say that about their cabinets.

And the best part is that the side of my fridge got a good cleaning as well. Maybe I am OCD, but I don't like things on the front of my fridge, so they are banished to the side. But now, I moved the few items to the memo board. Happy day!

So...what are your hidden storage secrets? Anyone else have cabinet door memo boards? Or do you have other great ideas for cabinet doors? I made a few of my old cabinet doors in chalkboards.

Attention friends & family - I have a really nice memo board if someone needs it. I'll even give it away, since I'm nice like that. Here it is, hanging in the pre-striped laundry room:

7.21.2011

DIY Trophy?

I don't even know if this is a trophy. Actually, I don't even know why this exists...


I was browsing through TJ Maxx when I ran across them. And there were also extension cords and roller skates. Do these get awarded to the best painters? Maybe this is some hot trend and I am getting too old to understand?! Let me tell you, it sure was hard to pass that red one up...... yeah right!

Fess up now. What do you think about these? Would you proudly display on your mantel? Or maybe you are already an owner of a paintbrush trophy?!

7.18.2011

1876

This past weekend, I got to sneak peek into a house rich with history. It was built in 1876 and will be the new home/house for my brother, sis-in-law, and niece. The house features an upstairs porch and two very old magnolia trees in the front yard. And while I was drooling over the sky-high ceilings and moulding, I managed to snap a few pics with my trusty iphone. These pictures don't do the house justice, just know that there is enough potential and years of fun DIY projects to keep the family busy.

Here is the front of the house...and the magnolia trees. They are large and in-charge, but make some great Southern charm. Also, if you look very closely, you might can see my dad working away on the upstairs porch. Look closely, he's there.

The entire house is getting a new paint job. Yes, we have all been busy replacing boards, pressure washing, scraping, painting, and drinking Sonic limeades. All of this while on 5 levels of scaffolding...fun times!

Here is another view of the house, and you can see the upstairs porch better.

One of my favorite details of the house are these corbels on the porches. So fancy!

Moving inside, the parlor is to the left of the front door. It has large windows and a gorgeous chandy. The original hardwood floors are hiding underneath that carpet. And as an extra bonus, this rare square grand piano stays with the house.

The den has some great moulding that accentuates the 12 foot ceilings. And with a little paint, this den is going to be a show stopper.

But the biggest show stopper has to be the staircase. It is a fabulous spiral staircase, and has a Harry Potter closet - those were the exact words of my niece. She was a great tour guide.

Upstairs also has 12 foot ceilings. And lots of windows. But it is plain and needs a young family to love it.

I will have lots of pictures to share of the house, both during DIY-projects and after shots. This house is our newest family member and needs a lot of love.

7.13.2011

Ramblings of a DIYer

So.... this was supposed to post last Thursday. But, I just logged in to write the post for today and see that this never posted. I am sorry for the absence the last week, and y'all never knew I was out because this didn't go public. Anyways, better late than never. (And the no-post explains the no-weird-emails.)


Just a few things to talk about today. First is that I am going to be MIA for the next few days but will return on Monday with a whole slew of goodies to show off and blog about. Think new, old house...and this one is not being torn down, it is being saved. 

Second, I finally joined Pinterest. Oh, the eye candy! Great place to catalog ideas and find some serious inspiration. I now understand what all the hype is about. If you want to be a member of the cool kids club, send me an email and I'll send you an invite. Trust me, you want to join.

Lastly, if you have any questions for me, send me an email. I get some of the goofiest, neatest, weirdest, best questions and thought it might be fun to compile them all into one fun-filled post. Kind of like a formspring for the blog.

So until next week, stay cool and keep up the DIYing!

7.12.2011

Stripe Me!

Yep, I decided to stripe the bare wall in the laundry room. But not wide, two-toned stripes. Those are so last year! Actually, they probably are all-the-rave right now, but are oh-too-predictable for me. So I decided to have a little fun with these stripes and just go crazy with them.

Well, not too crazy. I think fruit stripes would be a little too much for the small space so I kept the colors limited to blue and green. And all the paint was free because I used miss-matched paint already on hand. Plus I mixed a few leftover paints together and came up with some custom colors. Yay for custom and free!

So to get the lines on the wall, I traced along a level with chalk. Then I moved the level down and traced again. Not measuring anything, just making sure that the marks are level.

Then I put painters tape on the wall, following along the level marks.

Now it was time to paint! I just picked a color and started painting a stripe. No prior planning, no pattern - just paint. And if for some odd reason I didn't like it, I have the wall color so I could just paint over the stripes.

Finally I removed the tape while the paint was still wet. This makes for crisper lines. Of course, painters tape isn't perfect so there will be a few places that need touch-up. Or maybe I didn't get the tape stuck well.

After a quick touch-up, I stepped back to admire the new funky striped wall. And I am so smitten with it! The colors play nice together and really pump up the used-to-be-boring laundry room. Best part is that the project was 100% free. Such a nice surprise for zero dollars. And since I walk through the laundry room everyday to come and go, I get to see the stripes a lot. Good thing that I love them!



What do you think? A fun change?! It is really hard to photograph a stripy wall with two doors. Guess you'll just have to take my word on how great the stripes are...or come by for a visit if ever in Arkansas.

7.11.2011

And I Have Sold It...

Two items listed on craigslist...two items sold!

So long queen size bed in the guest room:


And I bought a full size mattress. Plans are to build a frame and have a daybed in the room for extra space. I already picked up the pallets to build the frame with. Yep, pallets! I'm really excited about this build and I think the pallets are going to be perfect.
I also sold the love seat in the master seating area that I griped about here:

And now there is space in the seating area! I can finally get it arranged and make it functional. I might actually use the area as my new blogging spot. Fancy that!

I was hesitant selling my things on craigslist. I have heard lots of bad gripes and warnings of scams. Well, I had absolutely no problems and would happily sell again using craigslist. It was so easy, and fast too! And, the person who bought the love seat was actually a past co-worker. It was nice to open the front door and see a familiar face!

7.08.2011

What A Letdown...

Since I started repurposing and repainting furniture on the side, I thought it would be a good idea to purchase a paint sprayer. Not that I don't love painting by hand, but the time factor seriously slows me down. I have a zillion things to do and devoting an entire afternoon to one piece drives me crazy. So I got on the interwebs and did a little researching.

Guess what....they are expensive! But I started saving anyways (the change found in the laundry) to purchase one because I *need* it. And at the rate I'm going, I will be 92 before I find enough change. Anyways, on with the story. I was browsing Harbor Freight the other day and noticed they carried paint sprayers that are deeply discounted. Bingo! Yes, the birds started chirping and a chorus of music played while I bought the sprayer. Nothing could have stopped me that day, nothing.

Fast forward a few days and I am ready to try this new toy out. I drag an extension cord from the inside the house into the back yard, fill the sprayer with paint, and pull the trigger. This is what happens:
video

What a letdown! A huge, $12 letdown. So the sprayer cost $12...I still expect it to do more than spit paint. But I am too hard headed to stop the sprayer now so I spit-coat the entire piece and then smooth out the paint with a brush.

The whole time I keep thinking to myself what my mom and dad told me - "not a huge fan of paint sprayers..." Gosh darn it, why didn't I listen? But........they did say paint sprayers on houses, so maybe it is just because I bought a cheap sprayer. Maybe a more expensive model will work better. Or maybe my model is defective and really wants to be a good sprayer.

What ever the deal is with the sprayer, it is annoying! Anyone have experiences with a sprayer? Recommend a certain sprayer? Or have you had a letdown experience with a DIY-tool you were oh-so-excited about?

7.07.2011

Tearing Up The Laundry Room

I have hated my laundry room since we first looked at the house. It feels like a narrow tunnel to me with the wall of cabinets and appliances on one side. And then the hanging bar is over the sink so the clothes hang down into the sink. Who thought this was a good layout for a laundry room? Not someone that does laundry.  These are real-life, unstaged photos. Welcome to my laundry room:

Looking in from the garage. Like that floor? Yep, it's new and matches the guest bath.

Looking towards the garage. Sorry for the bad pic.

So I set out to fix it up a little. There isn't much I can do about the size or the placement of appliances... actually there is nothing I can do about that. But I can tear down the cabinets and rearrange them to achieve a more open feel. And that is exactly what I did. Just me, no other help. I always do my best work in the two hours I'm home alone before the hubby gets home from work. First I tore down both cabinets and the hanging rod.

Then I moved the double-door cabinet to above the sink. I did not want the hanging rod above the sink. Now I can have the bad towels and other odds-n-ends corralled into one neat and organized place.

You might be thinking - how did she hang that cabinet all by herself. Well, it is easy to do with a little help from my friends, aka nails. I made a level mark on the wall and then nailed a hand full of nails along the line. Then heave the cabinet up on top of the nails to help hold the weight. Screw the cabinet into the wall. Here are my helper-nails:

Next I painted the bare wall. Luckily the previous owners left all the paint so I already had this color on hand. After the paint was dry, I hung the wire shelf. I used the same method to hang the wire shelf as I used on the cabinet. Not so much to hold the weight, but to make sure that it stayed level.

Finally I loaded up the shelf with laundry goods and a pretty basket to wrangle hand towels. I also hung a large hook on the wall to hold the laundry basket instead of it sitting on top of the dryer. And a holder keeps the broom/mop/etc. nice and neat. Here are some almost-final pics:


Much better and much more open now. I think I need to either beautify the laundry containers and shelf to make it even better. And I still need to do something with the other wall in the laundry room. This wall:
Blue stripes? Or wall paper? Or a funky stencil? I think it needs to be something bold and happy. After all, this is a chore-driven, boring laundry room. And what did the hubby say when he got home - oh, you moved the cabinet.

Total project costs - about $2 for the hook. Everything else was sitting in the garage on hand.

7.06.2011

Rain = DIY #1 Enemy

I snagged this old stereo cabinet at a garage sale for $3:



And I had grand plans to turn it into a bar or buffet table for the Habitat for Humanity Restore & After fundraiser/auction. A little paint, caulk and TLC would have the cabinet looking super funky for minimal dollars. So I set out on my stereo-cabinet-to-buffet-table adventure and gutted the cabinet.
Baby and Paris helped, of course
Then I added a new board to the inside of the cabinet to cover up the holes from the record player. Cut new doors from plywood and covered them in zebra-print fabric to add some extra jazz.

And finally, it was time to paint. I chose miss-matched teal for the outside and apple green for inside. The cabinet looks extra cute with new colors. But the cuteness was short lived. So short lived that I didn't even get a good picture of it. The cabinet was outside drying and airing out the poly fumes when it rained. No, not rain...poured down buckets of rain. The first time it has rained in a month, and I wasn't home to save the cabinet from the torrential downpour.

Now the cabinet is unsalvagable and definitely not in a condition to be used as a fundraiser piece. One side of it is peeled apart and hanging there by the new paint. This is very bitter-sweet because we needed the rain, but the cabinet is ruined.
 

I haven't thrown the cabinet away yet. I just can't bear to throw it away yet. It is sitting in my driveway, slowly wilting in the summer sun. I am so mad at myself for leaving the cabinet outside. I should have left it in the garage. And now I am back to square-one for a rehab project for the fundraiser. That just means I'll have to work on another fab rehab...what a bummer... (sarcasm)