Small Buffet Upcycle

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Hi everyone!!! Wow, it feels like I’ve been gone for SO LONG! I mean, 2 months isn’t forever but still, I missed posting for you and I’m glad to be back at it. Thank you for hanging in there while I took a little break. I was able to accomplish quite a few things around the house, get myself organized and reprioritize what I want and need to do with this blog going forward. I’m so excited to get back to sharing things with you and have so many fun projects in store, so I hope you love them as much as I do!

How about a little life update first 🙂 Not a ton has changed, just the usual day-in and day-out of stay-at-home motherhood. We have been taking more weekend trips as a family and I’ve been getting Landon out into some play groups each week, which he loves! So, we’ve been more social in the last couple of months I guess. The little one is seriously on the move! He is crawling and cruising SO fast! Walking is just around the corner…(heavy sigh). And no, mom, I still don’t have the baby gate up. :/ Landon is also adding to his vocabulary. He now says mama, dada, nana, & Ella (except Ella sounds more like Elwa, but so cute!) Speaking of Ella, I think she may have kennel cough. Ugh! Have any of you dealt with kennel cough in your dog? She is current on vaccinations, we did board both dogs about 2 1/2 weeks ago and she started this awful cough/choking sound just over a day ago. I’m hoping it’s not something more serious but we’re going to the vet today, so I’ll keep you posted.

So, this mini buffet. What do you think?!?! I’ve had this piece of furniture for years, 7 years to be exact, as it was a wedding gift from my little sisters. I honestly never had a true home for this piece but recently, have not been liking our bar area. It was a bit too big and in a very focal point of our home so I want to make it smaller and de-emphasize it a bit. This mini buffet seemed like the perfect size. Of course I forgot to take a picture of it before painting…this is why I needed to get organized about my projects, I start projects on a whim, only get them halfway done, never feel like I’m getting anywhere with this house! Before, it was a cream/yellow tone with bronze hardware and chalkboard doors. It was super cute but the yellow tone just didn’t go with the rest of the house anymore.

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I did want some of the black to show through when I distressed this piece, so to start, I painted 1 coat of Heirloom Traditions Black Bean on any area that wasn’t already black. Once that was dry, I added 2 coats of A La Mode (White). Most of the time, when I distress furniture, I just go over the edges with sandpaper. This time, however, I used a technique called Wet Distressing. You distress right away after the paint dries, don’t give it any time to cure because you want the paint to come off easily. Using a sponge or rag, and a bowl of water, you get the sponge wet, ring out the excess water, and lightly rub the area you want to distress. This will essentially peel off the paint giving you more of a “chippy paint” effect.  I actually found this method of distressing much easier than sanding and WAY less messy.

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For the knobs, I went with this simple matte black round ceramic knob from Home Depot.

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 And that’s it! Just a simple upcycle that made a world of difference to our bar area. If you have followed for a while, you’ll remember when I originally put the bar area together. It turned out like this…

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I did like it but have since taken our décor in a different direction so I thought this area needed an update. I also moved it to the opposite side of the room so that it is tucked away in the corner instead of front and center when you walk into our kitchen/dining room.

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I’d love to hear what you think of the new version! I also have a fall décor post coming later this week where you will be able to find sources for all the décor pieces you see here.

Happy Wednesday everyone! And it feels great to be back, I missed you friends!! 🙂

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Changing Table Upcycle

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If you’ve learned anything from me over the last couple years, it’s probably that I like white distressed furniture and it is extremely hard to find already finished. There is plenty of white furniture with no distressing and plenty of off white or cream with distressing and I even found a few bright white distressed dresser but they were $900!!…which is why I end up building my own furniture or buying an old piece and refinishing it myself.

This piece was  little different. I wasn’t finding a dresser/changing table that I wanted so I was considering making my own. However, I made my way to my 32nd week and decided this would be a terrible idea, mostly because of the pace with which I was accomplishing baby tasks (procrastination anyone?) I went searching for an old dresser to refinish, I found a few but most of the ones I liked were broken in some way. I got online one night and searched for unfinished dressers and came across this little beauty from Target.

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And…it’s on sale right now!! Regular price is $371, but you get $100 off when you spend over $350. I painted the dresser with my usual Heirloom Traditions Chalk Paint in A La Mode, it took 2 coats and then I finished it with clear wax before sanding the edges to get a distressed look. Because the base wood was so light, it’s a little tough to see the distressing in the picture but it’s there. To get a darker look, you could take a dark wax or patina to the edges as well.

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I didn’t want to use the wood knobs that came with the dresser because I wanted to add a bit of a metal/industrial look and bring in a color other than white. I found these knobs at Home Depot and they turned out great with the style I was going for.

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The changing pad is Serta Perfect Sleeper Contour Changing Pad from Babies R Us with the Serta Perfect Sleeper Changing Pad Cover in Ecru and topped with Koala Baby Essentials Terry Changing Pad Liner in Navy.

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Finally, the mirror above the changing table is the Horizontal Oval Fynn Captain’s Mirror from World Market. Unfortunately, it looks like the horizontal is sold out, but they do still have the vertical.

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I hope you all love this little space as much as I do! I can’t wait to show you the full room tour soon!

Vintage Baby Cradle

img_6132If nothing else, at least Baby Blackwood has a place to sleep when he comes home for the first time.

All of these projects have been so slow moving because 1) I procrastinate…my mom will attest to this and 2) I’m a perfectionist. However, I am absolutely IN LOVE with this little corner of our master bedroom for baby. Everything about it is very simple, just the way I like it!

I started with a vintage cradle, which was actually used by both of my little sisters! I love this, that Landon will use something passed down from Auntie Nikki and Auntie Mae Mae 🙂

img_6043I was searching baby cradles online before I started this project. I found this exact same cradle for sale on a common baby website for $480…my mom bought this cradle for $60 over 25 years ago!

To update the cradle I painted it with…you guessed it…white chalk paint. Surprise, surprise!
I painted the cradle with 3 coats of paint…
Heirloom Traditions Chalk Paint in A La Mode
Then topped it with a layer of protective wax…
Heirloom Traditions Clear Soft Wax
Finally, I used 150grit sandpaper to distress and rough up the edges.

img_6162I used a simple cradle mattress and sheet, knowing that I was going to order a DockATot for the baby to sleep on.
Babies R Us Cradle Pad
Babies R Us Knit Cradle Sheet – 2 Pack

I have heard AMAZING things about DockATot and how they make baby comfortable, mimic the feeling of the womb and help babies sleep better and longer. Those all sound like positives in my book so I thought we’d give it a shot. They are a little spendy but it is essentially a spot for baby to sleep that can be moved to our bed, the couch, his crib, it can basically be taken anywhere. This way, he will feel like he is in his bed no matter what!

img_6152I bought the DockATot Deluxe in Dream Weaver. The Deluxe is for Newborn through 8 months old, there is a Grand size for 9 to 36 months. You can also buy different covers to change up the color and designs.

For a little added décor, I hung up the super adorable mobile that we got from Restoration Hardware, the Chambray Animal Mobile and then added a faux garland, the Fern Garland from Michael’s, for a little green.

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Breakfast Nook Table

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So it’s been a month since I’ve posted 😦 #1 I can’t believe it has been that long! #2 That also means that this pregnancy is moving along insanely fast! In just 1 week I will already be 24 weeks!! I’m starting to panic about all the things I haven’t even begun to tackle in the nursery yet, not to mention finishing my registry, researching daycare/nannies, take some baby classes…the list just keeps piling up!

I’m beginning to get the nursery design underway. I have my design scheme and have picked out a crib, chandelier and rocker with glider. Good start, right? The biggest project in the nursery is going to be designing to closet layout which I’m going to start tackling in the next week or so.

In the meantime, I finally finished the table and chairs in my breakfast nook! We won’t talk about the fact that I started this project when we got back from Hawaii (also about the time I found out I was pregnant) and my projects all went downhill from there. It feels good to complete some things that have been sitting for so long, I feel so accomplished!!

You might recognize this table from my entry way. When we first moved into our house, I found this table at a thrift store for $40 dollars and painted it white. The chairs came from my old dining table and were black before. I painted them with 3 coats of Heirloom Traditions chalk paint in A La Mode. I put on 1 coat of Heirloom Traditions soft clear wax and then lightly sanded the edges so the black paint would show through a bit.

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I searched FOREVER for these chair cushions!! I couldn’t find anything I liked. Then, one day, when I wasn’t even looking, I spotted these at Home Goods and had to snatch them up! They are actually outdoor cushions but this area gets direct afternoon sunlight so outdoor cushions are actually great because the fabric won’t fade from the sunlight.

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White pitcher: Homegoods
Faux fiddle fig leaf stems: Z Gallerie
Wood Tray: Target

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Honeycomb Chandelier: Cost Plus World Market

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Last things to be done in this area are crown molding, a new exterior door and hardware to the deck and new flooring. I’m hoping the new flooring will happen in the whole house in the next year…it will really change the look of the house and complete many of the rooms. Stay tuned!!!

DIY Flower Basket Stand

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Happy belated Mother’s Day to all the amazing, hard-working mamas out there! I hope you all enjoyed a day of relaxation, pampering and spending quality time with your kiddos.

I started this project as something completely different…I was searching for DIY floor lamp ideas and came across a flower pot stand idea on Pinterest instead. My goal was to make it and post the instructions in time for you all to make it yourself, possibly for a Mother’s Day gift, however, my morning sickness got in the way 😦

I’m at 16 weeks now and my mornings are getting more and more difficult by the day. I wake up every single morning with a headache that has been lasting about 2 hours before I get rid of it enough to function and for the last couple days, intense joint pain in my hips is actually waking me up early in the morning. Anyone else have this? I feel like it’s so early to be having hip/joint pain already. My hope is that I just pushed myself a bit too hard with all the retail chaos of Mother’s Day shopping. I was running around quite a bit more than usual from Friday-Sunday. I used my pregnancy pillow last night and for the first time, woke up today without a headache! Woohoo!! (This could also be because I ate a very late dinner) However, the pillow did nothing for the joint pain. Let’s hope taking it easy for few days will help.

So this flower basket stand was super easy, it’s made out of an old floor lamp and a metal hanging basket. And other than dry time for the spray paint, I think the whole thing took me an hour to put together!

Supplies
old floor lamp
drill and drill bits
block of 1×6″ scrap wood
1″ self drilling screws
20″ metal hanging basket with fiber liner (remove hanging chains from basket)
a few inches 1/2″ copper plated steel tab tape
3/4″ self drilling screws
spray paint in color of your choice
potting soil and plants of your choice

Step 1:
I started with this lamp that I got for $20 at a thrift store

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Step 2:
Remove the glass bowl, light bulb and electrical fixture from the lamp. (The electrical fixture should come out by unscrewing it from the base and you’ll be able to pull a bit of the cord out throught the top of the lamp). Using wire cutters, cut the electrical cord away from the electrical fixture. You should now be able to pull the electrical cord from the  bottom of the lamp until it is completly removed.

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Step 3:
Using a drill and a drill bit just slightly larger than the threaded post of your screws, you will drill a hole on 4 sides at the top of the lamp post, holes should be evenly spaced apart. (Note: the larger hole is from the lamp switch, not from drilling)

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Step 4:
Using a piece of scrap wood (mine was a piece of 1×6 board but to about 8″), turn the lamp post upside down and center it on the scrap wood. Attach the lamp post to the wood using 1″ self drilling screws. You may want a helper for this step as the lamp post may not sit evenly and stay upright while you are drilling.

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Step 5:
Using the copper plated steel tab tape, you will attach the wire hanging basket to the wood. Turn the post back over so it is standing upright, scrap wood facing up. Set the wire basket on top of the wood, centered. Cut a piece of tab tape long enough to weave through some of the basket wires and still attached the tab tape to the wood with 3/4″ self drilling screws. As you are attaching the tab tape, you should be pulling it or holding it down tightly so the basket is secure and not loose enough to move.

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Step 6:
Use your spray paint to paint the lamp base, wood and hardware in your desired color and allow to dry according to directions on the can. Once dried, add the fiber liner to the metal basket.

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Step 7:
Plant your basket!! Again, be aware that your basket stand may be top heavy. Mine was a bit unsteady so I was very careful when planting and because it was so tall (mine stands about 7 feet tall without plants), I had to plant it while standing  a few stairs above the stand. I was also worried about the stand blowing over in the wind so I used wired to attach the stand to a post on my deck to hold it in place.

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I used an ornamental grass, 3 geraniums and 3 bacopa plants to dress up my basket, as well as an outdoor flat black spray paint on the base. I love this planter so much, I think I’m going to make a few others to match it!

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Room Makeover…Home Bar

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Last week when I was sick, I started re-watching the Gossip Girl series on DVD. It helped pass the 4 days I spent in bed. The problem…now I can’t stop watching episodes…back-to-back-to-back. It is making me completely unproductive. All I’ve gotten accomplish today is eaten 2 meals, watched 4 episodes and styled the new little bar area of our dining room.

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I’ve had this buffet for a few years and wanted to give it an update. There is a new trend in furniture called cerused wood. You use white or light wood filler against a dark stain or paint, cover the surface with filler and wipe off the excess so that the original paint or stain shows through and the wood grain is emphasized by the filler.

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This technique came around in the 1950’s and is coming back in a big way. I sanded the edges to distress the piece a bit and removed the nickel hardware and spray painted it gold.

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I found this cutie little mirrored tray at Homegoods and the even cuter lit “Bar” sign from Michael’s.

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These shelves and brackets are from Lowe’s. The brackets are plain pine wood that I painted with Heirloom Traditions chalk paint in Black Bean, topped with clear wax, then sanded the edges. The shelf is a pre-cut piece of pine that I stained with Minwax Dark Walnut stain. The cocktail tools, corkscrew, topper and bottle opener, are from the Nate Berkus collection for Target.

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These birch blocks are some of my favorites. So cute and rustic paired with candles.

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Time for a drink 😉

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DIY Upcycled Frame

IMG_4730As I type this, I am watching Fixer Upper re-runs and the episode where Joanna created a wall sign with the saying “today is a good day for a good day” is on! It’s meant to be that I have this sign in my home and post it for you all.

I’ve had this frame in my garage for SO long! I got it about a year and a half ago and originally was going to turn it into a mirror, but kept putting off take it to a glass shop because of how huge and heavy it is. Then I saw a faux deer head in a frame backed by weathered wood at a vintage market and I got inspired. I thought about putting a faux deer head in the frame but my hubby nixed that idea…he’s not big on “dead animal décor”, even if it is pretty and fake. So much for that trend.

Supplies
5/8″ x 5 1/2″ x 5″ cedar flat-top boards
1″ panel nails
wood glue
paint of your choice

You could do this with any frame you have, big or small, with some paint and rough cedar.

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I started by taking the backing and picture out of the frame.

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I bought cedar flat-top fence pickets because they are cheap and have a rough grain for a good distressed look. I cut each board to fit just inside the frame and attached them with wood glue and 1″ panel nails.

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Once the boards were in place it was time to make the wood look weathered and to paint the frame…

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On the wood, I used Heirloom Traditions DIY chalk paint in Weathered Wood. I used a wet brush technique (dipped the paint brush into water, then into the paint) so that the paint went on very thin. Once the first coat was dry, I went over it with Dark Liquid Patina, which is a top coat/wax that adds a dark distress and brings out darkened highlights and accents in your wood. On the frame, I used A La Mode chalk paint and lightly brushed over the frame, avoiding pressing too hard to keep the paint from getting into the crevices. The frame and wood turned out EXACTLY how I wanted!! Final step was the print, I used A La Mode chalk paint and a small 1/2″ wide detail brush. I used a pencil to rough sketch the words and then went over it with paint a couple times. You could also use a stencil if that’s easier.

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DIY Menu Chalkboard

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I finally bought a fiddle leaf fig tree!!!! I have been wanting one of these for SO long but have been nervous to pull the trigger because they are spendy and I have what you would call a black thumb as opposed to a green thumb. Now, I didn’t re-pot the plant because as I was driving it home with a giddy smile on my face, my mom texted me and said “is it poisonous for dogs?” Well, crap! It is!! The woman at the plant nursery said it is only toxic if the leaves are ingested and not in a fatal way but that I can return the plant if it makes me nervous. I am going to talk to my vet today but I really hope I don’t have to get rid of my new favorite décor item!

I have also wanted a large chalkboard for my dining room for dinner party menus for quite some time and in this house, I have so much room, I decided to make it happen. I got the idea from my mama, of course, she turns old windows and doors into chalkboards for her store all the time. It is such an easy DIY, anyone can do this.

Supplies
old door or window
sandpaper
paint in color of your choice for the frame
black Chalkboard paint
old handle or hardware to cover the hole from doorknob (if using a door)
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Step 1: This is the door I started with, I wanted on with a beveled edge leading into one large center square with no other design so I could use the entire center space for the chalkboard. I get things like this from Habitat for Humanity Restore, it is a great resource for used EVERYTHING when it comes to the home.
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Step 2: I used Heirloom Traditions chalk paint in A La Mode to paint the edges of the door. I decided to leave the old hinges on the door because they were so covered in old paint that it was going to be such a pain to take them off and because I knew they would be somewhat hidden by the plant where I was placing the door. You leave them on, take them off, add different old hinges to match the door knob, whatever you choose.

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Step 3: Use black chalkboard paint to make your chalkboard, I used Valspar Interior Matte Chalkboard Paint in Black. I’ve used this chalkboard paint before and it works really well, goes on smooth and levels itself out pretty well.

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Step 4: Add your hardware. I got this handle from my mom’s house, whenever I’m there I tend to go shopping in all the knick knacks and unpainted furniture she has waiting to be used. It’s a gold mine there! I’m not sure where she got this one but Hobby Lobby, Anthropology and World Market are great places to find cool old knobs and handles.

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Step 5: Just some basic chalkboard chalk and dream up your perfect dinner party menu. Enjoy and happy Saturday!!

Wooden Spool Clock

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Medical websites are my nemesis. About a month ago, I went to the doctor for a spot that appeared on my leg. At my appointment, 3 different doctors looked at my leg, none of them had ever seen anything like it and had no idea what it was. They did some blood work, sent me to dermatology and told me to Google it. I’m sorry…you are telling me to Google what is ailing me? I’m sorry, I know that Google is now a verb but when did this start happening? Of course, anytime I have a medical issue, I Google the symptoms both before and after I see the doctor, but I’ve never had a doctor TELL me to Google it!

So, what did I do, I got online and started searching “clusters of broken blood vessels” and “rash that looks like broken blood vessels”. And what comes up, no matter what symptoms you type in…some form of cancer. Again, medical websites are my nemesis. I waited 2 1/2 weeks for my dermatology appointment, stressing out about what was wrong with me, trying all sorts of home and natural remedies, with nothing seeming to make a difference.

Finally, my second appointment arrives. I was literally in the dermatologist’s office for 15 minutes, he took one look, knew exactly what it was, a simple and boring skin rash from an allergic reaction, gave me something to heal it, and I was on my way. Did I mention that I hate medical websites?

Anyway, this clock! I’ve been wanting to make this for so long! No, it’s not a full clock yet. I have to special order timepieces that are big enough to fit the size of the clock but I’m kind of liking the way it looks as just a piece of décor. I saw a clock like this in a magazine photo and started contemplating how I could copy it. These industrial cable spools are not easy to get your hands on but they are out there if you search. You can usually find someone giving them away or selling them on craigslist.

Supplies
Industrial cable spool, in any size (mine is 2 3/4′ diameter)
Sandpaper and electric sander
paint or stain of your choice to stain wood (I used Minwax Stain in Weathered Oak and Heirloom Traditions A La Mode Chalk Paint to get the weathered look)
paint of your choice to paint numbers (I Deco Art Americana Acrylic paint in Lamp Black)

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This is what I started with. I told my mom I wanted some industrial cable spools and she called me a few days later saying my little sister found a bunch of them for me 🙂 Dad unscrewed the top from the base, family teamwork!!

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I took the electric sander to the top side of the boards to get the wording off. Next, I used the Minwax Weathered Gray stain to get a bit of a weathered wood look. I dry brushed the stain on (dip the tip of your brush in the stain, blot it on a rag, and lightly streak it on, then wipe it down with another rag). After the weathered gray, I did the same thing with the white chalk paint.

Once the paint was dry, I penciled on the outline of the numbers with a stencil to make sure I had the spacing right, then painted the numbers on with the black craft paint.

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I love how it looks as is, but I will probably still order the clock hands that I want and make it a functioning clock. I’ll update you all with the proper steps when that happens!!

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Upcycled Queen Bed

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So it’s been almost a month and a half since my last blog post and I have felt like a part of my heart was missing! It has been an absolutely crazy past 6 weeks with work. And when I say work, I’m not talking about fun blog stuff in the works. I mean, my real-life, money making job. As much as I wish the blog could pay my bills, that is just not the case. Don’t get me wrong, I do love my job, but blogging and DIY has really become a huge passion and I have felt a little lost without it.

The hiatus is over and I am so thrilled to be back at it. I also realized today that my blogiversary is coming up very soon, it’s already been 1 year since I started this crazy journey! (Did I just use the word journey? What am I, a Bachelorette contestant?!?!). On one hand it feels like I just started yesterday, and on the other, I feel like I’ve been doing this forever. Either way, it was one of the best decisions I’ve ever made.

On to the post…

We have a queen bed in our guest bedroom, that, for the longest time, has just been sitting on a boring metal frame. I forgot to take before photos of this room when we bought the house so I snapped a quick photo before I started painting.

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I bought this queen bed over a year ago. I was furniture shopping at thrift stores and came across it. I certainly didn’t need a queen size headboard/footboard/frame but I loved the look of it, it was super sturdy and very well built and was only $150, so I brought it home. And there it sat, in my garage, for all this time. My husband is a big fan of that, by the way, all the stuff I buy because I think I will use it someday that just sits in our garage or extra bedroom. Oops.

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I did a quick and easy update on this piece, just 1 coat of white chalk paint and then sanded it down to let some of the dark wood show through and get a worn look. When you paint a light color over dark wood, people think it takes a lot of coats. If you are going for a worn, antique look, 1 coat should be enough.  After just one coat, here is what the wood looked like…

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Don’t worry if the paint looks streaky or doesn’t completely cover the wood. When I sanded, I used a fine grit (220) sand paper and ran it all over the wood. As you come to a spot where the brush strokes really stand out, this is where a put a little more pressure on the sand paper and make that a “worn” spot. Ultimately, the key is to not worry too much as you sand. You can always go back and sand more or add another layer of paint in some spots if you need to but you don’t want it to look perfect.

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The bedding used in this room is from Pottery Barn, part of our wedding registry, so it isn’t available any longer but their Jessie Organic Duvet & Sham are a similar color palette and pattern.

Now that I have the bed done and in place, I can’t wait to finish painting and decorate the rest of the room. Stay tuned!