DIY Up-cycled Furniture

Long Time – No Quest

So it seems as though I’ve given up on this blog. I really haven’t stopped making pinterest projects, but just forgot to tell you about them. Since it’s been so long, I’ll tell you about a project I did recently.

I’m sure you’ve seen people’s pins on renewing an old piece of furniture, often using the antiquing effect, or distressing. Upon research I discovered that there is actually a difference between the two. For my project I chose to distress. The main difference being: antiquing uses staining over a painted project to darken areas that would collect dirt and dust over the years, distressing is roughing up the surface in areas that would get the most use over the years. I wasn’t too concerned about antiquing since I liked the clean white look with some distressing.

I started with an old entertainment cupboard that I acquired from my grandparents. It used to house a record player and speakers.

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As you can see, it’s a little rough looking. The right door isn’t actually a door at all. This is where the speaker would sit and play the tunes without looking obtuse.

So I took to sanding the whole unit first. I later found out that this may not have been necessary. Many older pieces have had a protective substance applied that can be wiped off with a wet cloth if you let the water soak in for a bit. If a drop of water makes the surface turn white, this is likely what is on it. So you’d just want to wipe/scrape this off. I’ll know that for next time at least!

Here is what it looked like after I took off the broken pieces and sanded.

 

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Not bad right?

The next day I applied a coat of blue/grey paint/primer mix. I wanted my distressed areas to show the blueish hue so as to imply that it was painted over the years. I read a blog that said you’re basically writing this piece of furniture a story, and I liked the thought of that.

Then I painted it with a white chalk paint. Now, you can buy this product at the hardware store and have it tinted to the allowed colours, OR you can make your own. If you know me, you know I’ll go for that! All you need is plaster of paris and your desired latex paint colour and mix it together. This way you can make any colour and have extra to use for another project. Keep in mind that with chalk paint, even the store-bought kind, you have to keep mixing throughout use since the chalky parts settle.

I let that dry completely, then did my distressing. To do this, all I did was take sand paper and rough up the areas that would have gotten worn down over the years. Generally on edges from rubbing up against it and around the hardware from opening and closing.

After this I applied a matte clear coat to protect it. You should apply either a clear coat or wax (this will give a yellowish tint) to chalk paint or it will scratch very easy.

I added the finishing touches and voila! The finished project. It actually only took me a few days of working on it. Mostly because of the drying time.

 

My DIY Wedding – The Gifts

The Gifts

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Who doesn’t love a mason jar wine glass?? These are probably the only thing I decided to buy pre-made instead of making my own. Strictly on the basis that I found them for around $5 each and that was good enough for me! Trying to find the bases for the jars was not in my agenda, neither did I want to have to buy them in bulk. We got one for each of our wedding party and ourselves to take home as a thank you gift.

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For the guests we had a few different things. I’m not one for place cards. I don’t really like the look of them and wanted something with more of a lasting impression. I’d seen these spoons done up on Pinterest for herb gardens and the sort. They looked easy enough, so I thought, why not do 100? One for each guest as a special take home…

DON’T DO IT! I’m serious about this one. I LOVED LOVED LOVED the end result, but it was NOT easy. First of all, I had to find silver spoons. Not just silver plated, but actual silver spoons. Another item that can be quite costly. Fortunately there is the world of ebay and I was able to find them at a decent price. Next, you have to pound each one out flat. Sounds easier than it is. In the end I had two wonderful strong men using sledge hammers pounding out my beautiful spoons for me (couldn’t have done it without them). Next, you have to purchase letter stamps that can hold up to being pounded into metal without flattening themselves. If you don’t get a good enough set, you’ll hit one letter and have no letter stamp left for the next. Then the tedious work of lining up, double lining up and pounding each letter in individually. Don’t mess up, because lining it up exactly the next hit is nearly impossible. You also can’t bounce the hammer or the stamp or you’ll end up with a double vision letter. After you’ve done all of that, the easy part of colouring each spoon with a Sharpie and then using rubbing alcohol to wipe off the excess is the finishing touch.

Folks, I sincerely, dearly, genuinely, from the bottom of my heart, urge you not to try this at home.

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The next take home gift for the guests was the candy bar of course, and what not better than these cute little bags to go with it? If you can sew, you can make these. Most time consuming part was putting the drawstring in, but they’re worth it. Then find a stamp or a few stamps that you like and make them pretty!

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Finally, you’ll need to do thank you cards or photos as many are doing today. Why not say thank you IN the photo? We made ours out of burlap bunting (another thing I chose to make way too much of). You can make this little addition out of anything you’d like. Easy and looks nice.