Sunday, May 17, 2015

Sign Redux

Continuing with another project with materials on hand...we've had this mass produced Beaujolais sign for a while that came over from my boyfriend's house when we moved.  Not so great looking, it provided a great base for something more personal to our family as it has routed edges and slot on the back for hanging.
These can sometimes be found in thrift stores or a scrap piece of lumber would work.  Using a paint and primer in one, it got two coats of white paint.  While the paint was still wet, I wiped off the edges with a damp paper towel to reveal the dark border of the original print.  Once dry I also lightly sanded the edges as well.  A bit of black, brown, and burnt sienna paint to the edges, applied with a damp paper towel, help further define the edges.

I painted 'No. 23' as 23 is a meaningful number for us.  It is my birth day, my nephew's birth day, Michael Jordan's number, the list goes on!  Once dry, I sanded the front to distress the newly painted black letters.
Super simple and I love it added to our eclectic wall in the kitchen!

Sunday, May 10, 2015

Scrap Pile Stool

Itching to just make something this Mothers' Day, I pulled out some scraps and leftover materials that I always seem to hoard from projects.  I call this the Scrap Pile Stool as it is literally made entirely from scraps.  Even the paint is from the discount mis-tint shelf at the hardware store (quart of Benjamin Moore Aura in white for $5 - yes please)!

I've actually envisioned making a stool with these legs for a while.  These are the bottom parts of the legs we cut off a thrifted end table to make our ottoman (great tut here at Design Sponge) a few years ago.  You could also use wooden furniture legs that are sold at stores like Home Depot, or even metal hairpin legs.
After two coats of white paint, I sanded the legs with 150 grit sandpaper to give them a older, distressed look, sanding more paint off on parts of the curves that would have received the most wear.
Legs? Check!
The top of the stool is just a piece of scrap wood.  To be sure the legs were attached evenly to the top, I marked the center of each leg and drilled a pilot hole.  Then, I figured how close to each corner a leg should be, and marked that on the top.  Where the lines intersect, I drilled a pilot hole as well, then attached the legs with screws.
I wanted the padding on the stool to have a soft rounded appearance, so I first glued a narrow rectangle of foam to the wood top, then glued foam the same size as the top over that.  A thick layer of batting went over the top and stapled to the sides, not the bottom, of the top.  Stapling the batting to the sides reduces bulk when adding the fabric and provides a clean line.
Continuing with the theme of leftovers, I had just one large piece of drop cloth left from this project.  To make it more interesting, and to connect the stool with the drop cloth upholstered chairs, I added a row of blue stitching to mimic a vintage grain sack.
The crooked rows are charming!
This is really easy to do.  Fold the fabric in half so the fold is where the stitching row will go.  Iron the fold.  The crease will be the marker for the stitching.  I like sewing one row right down the middle, and then a row on either side.  Align the outside edge of the presser foot to the center row, and sew another row on either side.  These last two rows are 1/4 inch from the center.  There can be as many rows as suits your fancy and can be used to customize pillows, tea towels, napkins, etc.

To ensure evenly taunt upholstery, staple down the center of each side first and then work around the stool evenly.
To be sure the center stripe was even, I marked the center of the short sides and lined up the stripe to that mark.  Drop cloth also unravels easily so I folded the raw edges under.
Finally, a row of upholstery tacks completes the look.

 Not bad for a bunch of scraps and a couple hours!