Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Barstools (Round 2!)



I finally got around to stenciling the Target barstools!  I have been using them since the first of the year and have not seen any major defects in the quality of the chairs so I felt they were worthy of my time to stencil them.  I missed this look so I'm happy to have it back again!
(don't know what I'm talking about?
You can "catch up" by clicking here then just scroll down for all the info.  There is 2 pages, so also click "Older Posts" at the bottom if you want to see it all!)

I have now done 5 different stencils on chairs and I think this one is still my favorite, partly because it is the easiest one of all the stencils I have done!  It only took 3 hrs to do all three chairs.  My recommendation (if you are attempting this project)- is to pick a similar stencil pattern to this one that requires VERY little paint and most of your chair background will show through.  It is SO much EASIER!

I did end up doing just one very light coat of the Acrylic Finisher to protect the paint job and we'll see if that works better than 4 heavy coats - which is what I did on my first set of barstools and it ended up looking like crap! (see here).

***UPDATE:  The one light coat of Acrylic Finisher has not had the problem of peeling off and looking terrible like it did on my first attempt, so that is good.  However I wonder if it is doing any good at all.  My barstools obviously get a little dirty from use and so I wipe them do every now and again and the paint is starting to rub off slightly (very slightly) on the seat.  It doesn't look bad and really isn't noticeable to anyone so it doesn't bother me.  Plus I figure it would be a very easy touch if I ever wanted to do that.  On my first set of barstools I didn't have this problem but that could have just been because they were different barstools made out of a different material?.  I don't know- but again it makes me wonder if the one light coat of acrylic finisher is doing anything at all.  My advice for anyone else trying this project is -I think I wouldn't bother with the finisher.  My sister's barstools don't have any finisher on them and they have held up great.  My other piece of advice is LIGHTLY sand the chairs before painting them, I went a little too heavy with the sanding this go around and I kinda left marks on the leather in some areas :(
But overall I would still call the project a success and I still recommend other people trying it!

Once again if you are interested in doing this project and you want all the juicy little details- you better click HERE (then scroll down and click "Older Posts") for all my painted leather barstool posts.  I didn't go into much detail on how to stencil these barstools because the process on stenciling these stools was the exact same as what I have already done (and written about) before - so check out those posts (remember to scroll down and click "Older Posts").

Fireplace Book Shelves

I finally finished decorating the shelves around the fireplace so I thought I would share....

Whenever I have a bunch of empty shelves I aways think I need a lot of "Stuff" and end up overfilling them.  Eventually I always end up removing items and being surprised by how much better it looks.  It's just a personal preference but I guess I like my shelves to be on the "sparse" and "clean looking" side.

Here's a closer look at what's going on in the shelves.

I covered the books with a roll of white butcher paper I found at Hobby Lobby, then I labeled the spines.  For the books below - I bought them at a thrift store for a buck each then ripped the covers off and stacked them up!

This last weekend my husband got the TV on the right side of the shelves on a swivel arm so it can be pulled out and shifted to lots of different viewing angles.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Eye Chart Art

A while ago I pinned this artwork DIY from the blog Gardners two Bergers and finally got around to doing the project and hanging it up at the end of our newly finished hallway downstairs.
It is a knock off of some Restoration Hardware signs that cost almost $350 a piece - thank you Becca for figuring out a way to do it on the cheap and sharing the great tutorial!!!

I spent about $10 on the 18x24 canvas's from Hobby Lobby and used Staples to do the prints for $3 each.

I used "iWork Pages" on my Mac to create the two "lettered" eye charts, but found it impossible to do the tumbling E chart.  So I had to use Microsoft Word for that one (using a "text box" I was able to easily rotate the E's different directions).  I even secretly hid my kids names in the top chart!

Once the eye charts were printed out at Staples it is just a matter of Mod Podging them on to the canvas (which I had already spray painted black).  Then distressing the front with a little sand paper, glaze and a little black paint in different areas.  Really it was quite easy and cheap - love projects like that!

Kitchenette Hardware

I love cabinet hardware and when I get a chance to use a couple different kinds I get even more excited!  Rather than doing the same knobs on all the cabinets in our kitchenette I wanted something different for the bottom four cupboards, it just took me a little while to decide on what I wanted.  I finally settled on these.  They are not traditionally used on kitchen cabinets - but they work and I like the look!  
(PS - I got the shelves decked out in white ceramics too, all three pieces on the top shelf I found at Tai Pan, S L O W L Y but surely I am getting things done around here!).

I found the hardware at Star Hardware in Salt Lake for $5 each.  They are label holders- traditionally used on file cabinets.  They have a little lip at the bottom of them that does allow for opening the cupboard easily.

I just printed out the numbers One through Four on some paper and slipped them in.

(The round knobs I found at Hobby Lobby - they have a cool compass on them in Navy blue so they tie in great!)   To see the post with more information on the kitchenette transformation click here.

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Nursery Transformation

Thankfully with another boy on the way I didn't have to do much to this room to make it a nursery.

Basically just move in the crib, changing table, and rocking chair!
I did pick up this little blue rug at Target - it was only about $30!
I also spray painted the baskets in the changing table Navy Blue 
and changed the stripes on the dresser to grey.

My sweet mother-in-law makes a new blanket and bumper pads for each of my babies.  I get to pick out the fabric and she does the rest!

 I decided to keep things really easy and went with the existing colors and drapes in the room, I just added some grey to the mix.  I have just 6 more weeks till the little one arrives!  (For details on the original transformation of this room including the trim work and shelf just click here)

Saturday, June 2, 2012

Blue Benches

Last year I got a great hand-me-down from my brother- these cute wood outdoor benches.  I loved how they looked on the patio.  However they were already worn down from the weather and just one year on my patio and they started to fall apart.  They got knocked over in the wind quite a bit and there are lots of pieces broken now that need repair.
Whenever we went out to roast marshmallows we were always a little scared to sit on them.  So this year I decided to move them to the garden where they will probably never need to be sat on and they will function great as just a cute garden element to look at!  

Here is what I found as my replacement benches for the fire-pit patio.  They are metal which I am hoping means they can withstand being blown over and anything else the weather might want to throw at them.  They are from World Market and I was able to get them on sale for half off (regularly $150 - on sale now for $75).

I love the color but once I had them on the patio I realized I missed that pop of blue against the red brick wall.

 Spray paint to the rescue!

This is the color I chose - Brilliant Blue.  It is very bright but just what I was looking for.  Love what an easy fix spray paint is!  It required just 3 cans to cover 2 benches.  Don't you think these benches would be cute in any color!  Now I have lots of blue benches all over my yard and I love it!  I'll show you how the garden area is shaping up with the wood blue benches as soon as it is finished being put together.