Thursday, April 10, 2014

DIY projects

We did a few projects around the apartment many many months ago. I'm just now getting a chance to blog about them, but I'm so happy with all the updates we were able to do! These are things I pinned on Pinterest ages ago, but being totally 'uncrafty' I never actually attempted them. Once I actually did, I found how easy and stylish the result was that I couldn't stop! Goes to show that we all can have creative abilities if we try to just think outside the box. Some projects may have even cost more than just buying something brand new, but the experience of creating something yourself is worth the extra dollar sometimes. 

Staining wood bookshelves
We had been looking for a nice bookshelf for awhile. At a garage sale, we came across these shelves which were stacked on top of each other. I knew the color didn't match any of our furniture, but at a bargained price of $5 I figured why not try our hand at staining them darker? My hubs is pretty awesome, because you can't even tell this is his first time staining wood! love the end result! 

(Ps- I also got those beautiful planter vases from a garage sale. The tag under them tells me they were originally from Kirkland for $20 each, I definitely paid less lol)

We got our supplies from Home Depot: Sand paper, dark wood stain and a paintbrush. Since I can't smell paint fumes during pregnancy Hubs did this project while Ali and I were out of town. To get the stain to match our furniture he took one of the legs of the sofa to Home Depot and was able to get them to match it perfectly. Since I wasn't really around for the process, I can't tell you all the details, but I sent him the link to this blog about staining a wood staircase, a dining table and countertops. Also, I know he just went up to the employee at HD and asked what he'd need to stain a bookshelf and was given help with everything. 

This is a project which takes a few days as you have to first sand well, then apply and let the primer dry, then again apply the stain and let it dry before you add another coat. My advice: Start from the bottom or inside where no one can see/tell your mistakes as you learn and by the time you get to the most noticeable parts you will be a pro!


Sorry the After pictures aren't great, they're from my phone and the sunlight coming in was really not helping on this particular day. For now the shelves are still on the floor, but I'm trying to figure out some sort of pegs or something for a base that can elevate them above the ground just a bit so they reach the windowsill height. I will update on that soon! 

Gold Sharpie Paint Candle Design
The next project was a simple idea that came to me on an afternoon of boredom. Remember this gold sharpie lamp DIY I did awhile back? I just loved how easy it was and how it added a little oomph to the lamp. That's basically what I did with this candle below. Again, this was another garage sale find and my husband loved the intricate detail on it. I'm a big fan of sharpie paints and how easy they are to use!

Just to give you an idea of how the gold paint brought some life into the candle, here's a look of it half done.

Dining Chairs Update
One of the first projects we actually did  was updating the upholstery for our dining chairs. During the move from NJ to Fl these chairs and the off white cloth of the seats had taken a serious beating, left with quite a few stains. During one of my many million trips to Target I fell in love with this geometric design window curtain and decided to use as the fabric for my chairs. I think one panel cost $15, you can easily find cheaper fabric with coupons at JoAnn or maybe even cheaper curtains but I just really loved this particular design. 

My initial plan was to paint the wood of our chairs too. I even found a great tutorial on painting dining chairs here. We just never got around to doing it.

This project took us one evening. Maybe two episodes of Breaking Bad later, voila! Our dining table had a whole new look. All you need for this is a good pair of scissors, a staple gun (yet another garage sale find for $1, refill staples can be bought at Home Depot for about $3) and Scotch Guard spray to make your fabric stain resistant. It's easier to do as a two man project, as I would hold the fabric taut while hubby stapled, but it can be done by one person. So turn on your Netflix, find a show you've been meaning to catch up on and get to work!

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