Chevron Stripe Table Makeover ~ a.k.a. Folding TV Tables

Our new coffee table slash folding tables a.k.a. tv trays, being presented to you by the beautiful Miss Sadie!

These tables were passed on to Scott and our family by an amazing relative who was fondly called Grandpa Chuck.  He was grandpa by marriage but that didn't matter to us.  He was the greatest.  He was always tinkering away in his wood shop.  He made all kinds of toys and furniture for the family.  It was a privilege to receive something made by Chuck.  When he wasn't in the wood shop he was in the garden growing some gorgeous flowers and veggies while Helen was in the kitchen canning and preserving.  We used to go visit them at their home near the beach and play Pinochle with them for hours.  Then we would pig out on sugar free ice cream (because Helen was diabetic) and sit and talk until bedtime.  They were always bantering back and forth...so cute.  Such great memories of the good times we had together.  They were so fun.  They taught us so much.  Miss them bunches!

So these folding tables carry with them a lot of fond memories.  
We wouldn't want to part with them.  

BUT...I did want to lighten them up a bit.  Give them a little bit of fun personality to go with our space.  I don't think Grandpa Chuck would mind.  I hope not!  

First I painted them with a crisp white. 
Then, as you see in the picture above, I taped off a large chevron stripe 
(or arrow) on each table.  I used Maison Blanche paint in Cobblestone to add the stripe detail.  I wanted the stripe to be somewhat subtle and not overpower the rest of the room, but still add interest.

(Maison Blanche paint is available at Fox Hollow Cottage if you are interested)

Once the chevron stripe was completed I removed the masking tape:

Much better!  
They just needed a couple of touch ups where the white paint had chipped and they were done.

Now they look good enough to use as a coffee table in this room. 

Perfect for setting a steaming mug of coffee on, or holding a laptop.  Easily moved out of the way and folded up for when I exercise in here.

They can even be pulled apart and used as "t.v. trays" from time to time. ;)
Although we don't have a television in this room.  

My orchid (minus blooms!) looks great here too.  (Anyone have any orchid care or advice for me - I'm open to hear it.  Poor little thing just won't bloom.)

(Let's just pretend you don't see the primed end table in these pics...it's mid makeover :)

What do you think about the new look?

Better, right!?

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My Exciting News and a Thank You...

Hey!  How are you today?

I have something exciting to share with you!

Have you heard of Beckie Farrant?  She blogs over at Infarrantly Creative....oh and Roadkill Rescue...and did I mention Knockoff Decor?!  Yeah, you read that right.  Beckie is the brains and creative brawn behind all three of these amazing blogs! 

Beckie is a crafty gal who shares and inspires people by the thousands to pick up a paint brush, a hammer, or a staple gun and create something awesome. 

 She has definitely inspired me.

I'm sure Beckie is pretty darn busy managing three super successful blogs, and yet she still takes time to share her experience and know how with so many others through informational podcasts, Google+ hangouts, and presenting at blogging events.  I haven't met Beckie in person yet, but I hope to one day.  She seems really cool and down to earth.  And I would love the chance to tell her thanks in person for featuring some of my projects on her blogs.   

So, if you get a chance go check out my latest project being shared by Beckie at Knockoff Decor today:

Then you'll want to check out Roadkill Rescue, where she features amazing trash-to-treasure makeovers done by bloggers from all over.  I've got a few items in her archives here too.  ;)

And when you are done checking out all those knockoffs and makeovers, stop by and peruse Infarrantly Creative for even more creative inspiration and blogging tips.

Thanks again Beckie.  You've made my day!


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Colors of Springtime ~ DIY Farmers Market Baskets

Wouldn't it be nice if it were springtime already?  I'm craving the things that come along with spring.
Today we were blessed with some golden warm sunshine here.  It came close to 60 degrees!  Just a little tease for us Pacific NorthWesterners.  We're pretty much guaranteed a couple months of rain still.  

So a magical day like today is just what we needed to tide us over until those beautiful sunny months are finally upon us.  

A little "fix" of pure sunshine will get us through the gray, wet months still to come.

You know what else reminds me of springtime?

Fluffy Clouds and Rainbows
Tree Blossoms
The Smell of Fresh Mown Grass
Short Sleeves
Kids Voices and Laughter Carrying On the Breeze
Ladybugs and Butterflies
Evening Strolls and Bike Rides
Planting Gardens
Farmers' Markets

Last summer I created a white Anthropologie Knockoff Farmers Market Basket (Below).  

Say that a few times quick!

I used one of the cardboard baskets that berries come in and coated it with some Gesso (used to prime and stiffen artists' canvases), white spray paint, and spray polyurethane.
You can read about it HERE.

I thought it would be fun to make more using some spring colors, so I got busy mixing my Gesso with acrylic craft paint until I had the pastel colors I desired. 

Once they were painted I got all glittery-eyed and decided they needed some glitter too.

The Gesso makes them really stiff and the polyurethane makes them water proof.  

The glitter just makes them cheerful!

Then I dressed them up with ribbons and filled them with a few little trinkets. 
These will make adorable mini Easter baskets or fun little gift baskets for friends.

In the first basket I put some raffia, a Sweet Little Bluebird, and a mini egg.

The next one got some pretty seashells and a silver starfish.  

Gifts from the Seashore.

This next one holds some fragrant lemon body treats.  I love lemon!  

I haven't decided what to do with this Tiffany Blue one yet.  Its my favorite, with the gleaming organza bow.  I might just have to keep it next to my bed for holding jewelry and other stray stuff.  :)

These were easy to make and didn't cost anything since I already had the cardboard baskets saved from last summer.  The Gesso, paint, glitter and polyurethane were already in my craft cabinet.  

My Inspiration:
anthro farmers market baskets
Anthropologie's Farmers' Mkt Baskets

Here's to more sunny days and laughter being carried on the breeze!

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Now I know my ABC's ~ A Smart Lazy Susan Makeover

There is something about graphic elements in design that just attracts me.  I know I'm not the only one since there are so many gorgeous graphic fabrics being used in design and you see typography of some sort in many Designers' spaces.

You'll find faux zinc letters and a subway art poster in my home decor also.  

But I would like to introduce you to my brand new Lazy~Alphabet~Susan.

What do you think?

I'm pretty smitten.  :)

See, she wasn't very smart looking before.  As you can see below, she was looking like she'd seen her best days already.  She came home with me when we stopped at a garage sale and the owner offered to throw her in for free.  In case you don't already know, I'm pretty fond of free stuff.  If there is even a remote chance that I can turn it into something fabulous or useful, I'm game.

So home she came, all tired and worn looking.

At first I just knew I would turn her into a knockoff of those Pottery Barn wine barrel lids...

But that's been done a few (hundred) times before.
...and...uh hem...I have enough stuff that indicates I like wine :)

When I saw this fabulous mirror on one of the Joss and Main events I instantly knew that I would be borrowing this concept for my new Lazy Susan. 

Source:  Joss and Main Event,/Bassett Mirror Company
Although I wanted her to retain her original purpose, I didn't want her to look tired and worn out anymore.

I sanded the little bit of poly finish she had left off.  Then I took some scrapbooking die-cut letters to use as a stencil/template and traced the letters onto the wood in pencil.

We had fun making notes for each other with the letters while we were at it.

I laid the letters on the board and traced them in order.  A few letters were missing so I used the piece of cardboard they came from as a stencil to trace those ones.

Once they were all spaced evenly and traced onto the wood I took an exacto knife and scored the letters into the wood.  These score lines kept the dark stain from bleeding into the letters. 

I used a small paintbrush to apply the stain around the letters.  The edges were not as perfect as I would have liked but scoring them with the exacto knife first kept them pretty sharp.  I used a larger brush to finish the remainder of the surface that was being covered in the dark stain.

I applied three coats of a dark Minwax stain called Jacobean, allowing each coat to dry completely before starting the next.

Once I had the intensity I wanted with the Minwax stain I allowed the piece to dry for a couple days.  Then I went over the entire surface with some Howards Restor-A-Finish to give the unfinished wood (the letters and center) a warm glow.

I love how it looks in my dining room.  Not just any old Lazy-Susan anymore.  No Way!
And remember the kids that hang out here all day, they can practice their ABC's while they eat.  
Plus it will be so much easier to share markers and craft supplies with each other now!

Did I mention that I don't bother using a table runner or table cloth because it would just get destroyed by little kids?  

Well now I have something amazing on my tabletop and I don't even miss those table runners one bit. 
(Okay, maybe a little.)

And yes, that is wine you see in the background.  I'm enjoying some right now as I finish typing this post.  

Don't worry...the kids have all gone home for the night ;)

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Are You Serious ~ Why is the scale in front of the fridge?

Recently I joined with a couple of ladies at the gym to form a workout team.   We'll call it group accountability. We're doing a lot of strength training that I wasn't accomplishing on my own.  A little bit of P90X type stuff thrown in.  For all of you DIY fans out there we will call it DIY for the body.

Each week I am seeing noticeable improvements in my strength and abilities.  It's pretty awesome actually.  And bonus, I get out of the house.  There is another added benefit of adult conversation involved.

But last week I couldn't make the Friday workout and I sort of implied I would do the exercises on my own at home over the weekend.  And I meant to...but I got kinda busy.  Yep.  Friday night I had a friend over to play cards and sit in the hot tub.  Fun times, right!?  Then Saturday and Sunday our son had a basketball tournament out of town and my sister came and stayed the night.   Of course we went for Mexican food and Margaritas with Sis.  It's our tradition.   

Pretty soon it was late Sunday night and I was exhausted from a busy weekend and honestly that workout never crossed my mind again.  

Until one of my workout buddies asked last night if I'd gotten my back and legs workout in?  Insert very stern look here.

Ummmm, nope.

And at first I laughed it off.  I mean, it's just one workout, right?  Just one.  Nobody's dying here.

But then I reminded myself that the reason I'd gotten so out of shape to begin with wasn't because I skipped one workout.  And it wasn't because I didn't have someone else checking up on me to make sure I stuck with it. It wasn't even because I don't have the knowledge I need to eat right and stay fit.  It's pretty simple really.

It's because there is ALWAYS an excuse.  Always.  And if I don't hold myself accountable, then I start offering more and more excuses of why I can't fit it in.   And that goes for eating right too.  I will always have stresses, or celebrations, or boredom to drive me to the fridge looking for that treat...

And as long as I am willing to accept those flimsy excuses instead of standing strong for what I really want...I'm not going to see a big change in my body.

So as a bit of a message to myself and my out-of-shape willpower, I moved the scale downstairs in front of the fridge.  And I put a little message to myself on the door for when I'm standing there telling myself that it's just a little snack.  Too bad I didn't have an extra full length mirror to E6000 to the front of the fridge!  That might make me stop and think twice about having ice cream at 10 p.m.  Ha!

Either that or I'd trip on the scale, fall and break something....

So, after I took some quick pictures of this setup, I sat down at the computer to edit them.  As I was editing the photos My Honey came home from the grocery store and went directly into the kitchen to put something in the fridge.  The next thing I heard was, 

"Hey Honey, is this a hint?"


***P.S.  Please note that this is meant to be humorous.  I am fully and completely aware that eating a healthy, low calorie diet and exercising is the best way to maintain a healthy body.  My intentions are never to shame myself or make out that I'm not worthy if I'm not my perfect self.  I don't think fad diets or miracle pills are necessary.  Adopting a healthy lifestyle is key.  But if you know of a pill that will work miracles...haha...hey, just saying! ;)

****P.P.S.  Amy and Shilo, you rock!  Thanks for letting me join in the workouts ladies!

*****P.P.P.S.  I first saw a scale in front of a fridge at my neighbors, Michelle.  Can't claim it as an original idea.  :)

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Ryan Gosling step aside, my man can do 'Hey Girl' just as well!

You all have seen the Ryan Gosling 'Hey Girl' pictures on Pinterest, right?  Very funny stuff.  Ryan has a way of making us feel better about all the time we spend crafting, DIY-ing and blogging.  He reassures us that we haven't been neglecting our duties, or if we have he still loves us.  Yes, it's all very tongue in cheek.  If you haven't seen them there are a multitude when you Google Ryan Gosling just click the link to see more images

I just couldn't let this chance pass me by, so I quickly threw together my own version of some 'Hey Girl' posters...

Using Scott as my model, of course!


Scott and I don't usually go over the top to celebrate Valentines Day.  We try to have a nice dinner.  (If I'm lucky it's out somewhere so I don't have to cook it.)  But I've prepared some really special Valentines meals at home over the years.  

Maybe he gives me something chocolatey. 

Maybe I give him a special treat too ;)

I'm not very fond of the greeting card business and how much money the cards cost ~ so we skip those.  

We've gotten creative in the past.  One year I woke up and Scott had created a scavenger hunt throughout the house.  I spent a good time finding clues until I finally came to the hidden surprise...it was so sweet. 

Some years the day has blown by without either of us barely noticing it.  And that's okay too.  We try to show our love every day in the way that we treat each other.  I think that's so much more important than going all out on this commercial holiday.

 What do you do for Valentine's Day?
Do you think it's important?

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