Saturday, January 28, 2012

Distressed Wood Sign

Today I want to share with all of you a sign I made for my mother for Christmas.

My mom, like me, is a huge dog lover. At the end of a long day I love coming home and cuddling up with this guy...
So I thought a sign like this would add some cheer to her wall. Making a sign like this is super easy so here is a tutorial on how you can make your own.

First you need a piece of wood. I had a scrap piece of pine lying around that was the right size but you can use plywood, scraps or whatever you prefer since it will be painted. Also if you don't have a saw you can get the nice gentlemen at the hardware store to cut the piece to size before you buy it. I spray painted my board white to start with. (painting with acrylic paint and a brush would work just as well)

Then I cut out letters with my awesome Silhouette machine and stuck them on the wood. If you don't have a cutting machine you can use peel and stick lettering from the craft store.

With the letters on I sprayed two nice coats of flat black spray paint over the piece. After letting that dry I carefully peeled off the letters with some tweezers to reveal the clean type. I then used my orbital sander (again, for those without, sandpaper and some elbow grease will work the same) and distressed the edges and a few spots to give it that worn in look.

I was thrilled with the results (and so was my mom!). I love the look of these signs...I want to try some with pallet wood, and am thinking there is a perfect spot for one in my bedroom! Any of you think you would like to try this easy weekend project? What phrase would go on your sign?

As always, I would love to hear from you in a comment below. I'll be back soon with another project so be sure to check back!


Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Wire Basket Pendant Light

In this post I am going to share a project that I love, love, love! I've seem handmade lighting made out of industrial parts, baskets and all sorts of reclaimed objects so I was really excited to try one of my own.

I used a vintage wire basket and turned it into a pendant light for our shabby chic bedroom. To make one of these you will need the object you want to make the shade/light and a few things from the hardware store. As this was my first attempt, the staff in the electrical department at Home Depot were very helpful finding what I needed (so just ask if you can't find this stuff!). The first photo is of a push through on/off socket. You will also need a swag light kit which comes with cord, and a few other items to hang your light.

The socket goes on the inside of your basket and you push the top up through the base of the basket. We followed the instructions on the packages to see how to strip the end of the cord and attach the two ends of the wire and attach this to the top of the socket. To make sure we did it right I stuck in a light bulb and plugged it in. As you can see -- there was light!

I was really excited to get it hooked up. Unfortunately we had overlooked something...

I forgot to weave the chain through the cord before attaching it to the socket and basket! You need to weave the cord through the chain because once you attach the cord to the socket piece, the other end of the cord (the part that fits into the wall outlet) is too large. Thus we took it apart and fixed our mistake.

*side note* I am saying "we" in this post meaning my wonderful side kick and boyfriend, Tim. We have been tackling all sorts of projects together in Birmingham for "our home".

Once completed, we hung the chain from a hook in the ceiling (came in the swag light kit). As renters, we could not wire for this light but simply ran the cord down the wall to an outlet and covered it up with white duct tape so it is barely noticeable.

I love the light and character it gives the room!

I am so happy with how our first refurbished pendant light came out that I want to make another one. Here are some other inspirational lights I found on Pinterest:

Clockwise from top left : 1|2|3|4

Do you have any ideas for objects that could be used for this project? Would you like to have one of these in your place?


I am linking up here:


Tuesday, January 3, 2012

A New Year of Blogging!

Well I have been absent from the blog world this fall and now it is time for a reappearance! My last post included some furniture redos for our new apartment in Birmingham. I moved to Birmingham to attend UAB and earn my Masters in Public Health. I had every intention to keep blogging but with adjusting to a new city, being busy with a job and a full time grad school course load, I simply did not get around to it.

Well I have completed (and thoroughly enjoyed) one semester but have missed sharing my projects on my little blog! Although I may have not been posting, I have still been DIYing and in this post I will share a few photos as a preview of what I have been up to the past few months.

{ a book planter for my father's birthday}

{living room curtains, a.k.a. my first attempt at curtains ever}

{ruffled diaper covers}

{old cabinet drawers repurposed into shadow boxes}

{a set of hooks in my HUGE room turned closet}

I will be returning with more photos and tutorials for some of these projects (any you are particularly excited to hear about?). I also have a long list of more projects to tackle in 2012 so I look forward to sharing those as well!