Monday, June 29, 2015

Two Chairs & A Side Table

I have a fond admiration for chairs with upholstered pads. I came across one of these chairs in Goodwill a long time ago and while scanning OfferUp one day, I see a lady selling a pair of the same chairs. Secretly, I was hoping she would have a third so I could make a dining room set, but she didn't. So I told her I would buy one chair so I could have a set of two. I went to go pick it up and she ended up giving me both chairs for $5. So now I have three of these. They are such great chairs, great character with a really nice wide seat.

I went to go pick it up and she ended up giving me both chairs for $5. So now I have three of these. They are such great chairs, great character with a really nice wide seat. I have really been liking lighter colors now that it is summer here in Wisconsin, specifically light blues, grays and whites. So I decided to paint the chairs in Seagull Grey by Behr that I made into a chalk paint with Plaster of Paris. For my chalk paint, I use three parts paint, one part water, and one part Plaster of Paris. I usually mix the water and Plaster of Paris first and then add the paint. I then found this amazing fabric at my local Jo-Ann Fabrics. I really like the color combination. As much as I love chairs after, they are not fun to paint for me. They take so much time with all the detail on them. I need to get a sprayer soon! Next, I finished them with furniture wax. The table in the middle was one of my very first projects. I used General Finishes antique white milk paint on the base and their Java Gel for the top. I love this set, wish I had a bigger place to keep all these items!

Friday, June 26, 2015

Cedar Hope Chest

So I am in one of my favorite local Goodwill stores and I know I really don't need any more furniture. I have been pretty good about not buying every single dresser I see lately due to lack of storage space in my garage. As I am in Goodwill, I stumble across this amazing cedar hope chest, a project I have never attempted before. It already had the tag pulled off to purchase, but someone put it back on there. It was fate, meant to be. I automatically inspect this item a bit more though since someone put the tag back. The veneer top of the chest was peeling away at the edges. I tried pulling it a bit more to see how easy it would be to get off and it was coming off pretty easily. Done deal, it was coming home with me. Here it is sitting in my "on deck" area in my condo. I had already started working on the top.

I have never tried removing veneer before, so I wasn't too sure what to expect. After it was coming off so easily at the store, I didn't think it would be too bad. Well, I was VERY wrong. I only got a few more pieces off that way. My nice neighbor downstairs saw me outside struggling with a screwdriver and suggested using a hammer and a putty knife to try to get under and lift. This worked, but I was definitely damaging the nice wood underneath and thought I would be there for at least 12 hours at that pace. So I found this great blog online that gave a lot of tips. My next try was going to be with the blow dryer. Well, this helped but I knew I was still going to be there a long time. Next was the hot damp towel attempt.

This seemed to help a bit, but was still extremely time consuming. I am probably on my 4th or 5th night working on this after my day job and I still barely have half of the two layers of veneer off at this point. It was definitely turning into a labor of love project.

I got it to this point, and I just couldn't do it anymore. I now barely had any edges to try to get under to start lifting more veneer. So I just decided to take my Ryobi orbital sander and I sanded it off. I wish I would have tried this first. It took a while, but not as long as all these attempts did and I didn't damage any of the wood underneath with the sander. So I had to do a lot of work with wood filler and sanding after all this was done. I wish I would have taken more pictures at this point. 

Next, I started painting the base of the chest. I went with Country Chic Paint in Vanilla Frosting for this to match some other pieces in my living room. I love their paint. It is a bit on the pricey side, but it goes on great and does not require too much prep work from my experiences with it so far. I loved how the paint was bringing out all the great detail this piece had. Then I used General Finishes High Performance Top Coat in Flat to seal it. I am in love with this piece and definitely keeping for now. 

Solid Vintage Cherry Dresser

I love to scan the local Craigslist for furniture. I came across this great 8 drawer solid cherry dresser for a very good price. The ladies mom was going into assisted living and she was getting ready to sell her condo. This lady kept this dresser in great condition. I couldn't believe how heavy it was! Sorry the before picture isn't that great.

When I got to working on it, I found this great Sterling House label in the top drawer. I did a little research and I think this piece probably dates back to the 1950's. 

I sanded down the top with my Ryobi Random Orbit Sander. I would highly recommend this sander. It had a bag to collect dust and you can also hook it up to a shop vac if you have the right adapter for the shop vac. The wood grain was incredible on the dresser once it was sanded, this picture does not do it justice.

I applied one coat of General Finishes Java Gel Stain. I always apply this with a foam brush and then wipe off the excess after about 10 minutes with paper towels. 

Then I painted the rest of the dresser with Behr's New House White. I love their Premium Plus Ultra Interior Matte paint. It has great coverage and can easily be converted into chalk paint with Plaster of Paris. And here is the dresser, I just loved how it turned out. I am looking for another one after I fell in love with this one. 

Thanks so much for reading! XO,

You can find me linked up to:

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Console Table Turned Bench

One of my new websites I have been checking for furniture is OfferUp. I came across this great console table that was located not far from my condo.

Although it was not real wood, it was a great piece with a lot of character. It was not as high as I was hoping for a console table, so I decided to make it a bench. My vision was to paint the table black and find some good neutral fabric to upholster it with to make a bench.  I usually always go to my local Jo-Ann's for fabric, but felt like trying Hobby Lobby. I am so horrible when it comes to fabric, I could always spend hours in there. I narrowed it down to these two.

I decided to go with the fabric in the bottom picture. I purchased two yards, a long with some batting and foam. I am a novice when it comes to upholstering. I learned by watching YouTube tutorials and just trying it. I used my electric stapler and started on it.

It is not perfect, but I was pretty happy with how it turned out. I used Country Chic paint in Liquorice and General Finished High Performance Topcoat in Flat. This one is a keeper!

Thanks for reading!

Introduction & First Blog Post

Hello everyone! My name is Shayla Martin, 27 years old, currently living in Pewaukee, Wisconsin.  I have created this blog as an outlet to share my projects and methodologies to my new found love of refurbishing furniture. I have always loved to make crafts and be creative as I don't get to in my finance job during the day.  I used to make jewelry and knit/crochet during high school and college. I still do those projects when I need to take a break from furniture. I recently started getting into refurbishing furniture as I was looking to furnish my condo I bought in June 2014 on a budget while also trying to make some updates to it.

It all started with a perfect spot that I had for a desk in my main living room. I wanted a desk to fit perfectly in there width and depth wise and also hide all my cords and router. I looked online at all affordable websites: Target, Overstock, Amazon, West Elm, Ikea etc. I found some I liked but they were never the perfect dimensions. I also suggested making a desk with my boyfriend, who happens to conveniently be very handy, but he said after all the costs and time, I would be better off buying one. Then, one day I was perusing a local Facebook for sale group and happen to find this amazing old teachers desk with plenty of storage for $25. After seeing the measurements, I knew it would be a perfect fit! When I went to go pick it up, I met the nicest lady, Kim. She said that she had bought it as a project for herself, but just didn't have the time.

After getting it home, I started looking for ideas for it. I decided wanted to do a dark wood top and grey for the rest. Needless to say, this was my very first project and I feel I have come a long way since. My pictures are not that great but I tried to include some for you to see the progress. I tried Miss Mustard Seed Paint in trophy for it, and did not have very much luck mixing it or applying. It would take a lot for me to use her paint again. Kim turned out to be a great resource during all of this. I felt bad for messaging her after I had bought it, but she told me she had painted a few items and to reach out if I needed help, and I did. She was so nice and walked me through a lot of it over the phone and offered so much advice. I had found my first furniture friend and we are still great friends almost a year later. We are also hoping to do our first flea market together this September. 

Thanks so much for reading my blog, I am hoping to do a few more posts of old projects soon.