Friday, January 28, 2011

Evolution of a Pop Tart box

While I'm on the subject of making things out of things you already have, here's another recent project. A very small project.

Here was the problem-

Pretty fire place, pretty picture on top of said fireplace, and ever-growing stack of DVD's, and video games on top of fireplace. Josh is the culpret on this one, but I understand why it happens. You see, we have a place for video games and such, but that place is across the room on a too-full bookcase. It's just not real convenient to walk across the room every time to put stuff away. So, I've been thinking the last few days about a way to solve this problem. Then, as I was getting Noah his breakfast one morning, I saw the oh-so-glorious solution- an empty Poptart box. Yes, I'm a horrible mother- I give my kid poptarts for breakfast occasionally. Untoasted, in fact. Anyways, Pop Tart box + scrapbook paper + a little bit of ribbon=

My little box was then attached to the back of the TV stand so it's out of reach of small brown-eyed children, but still within easy reach of Daddy.

My latest project

Here at the Brahm home, there's almost always some type of project going on. This is for several reasons. Mostly because I have a hard time not doing anything, but also because for some reason I always think that something around here could be better, I like to work with my hands, learn how to do new things, and make things pretty. Not pretty as in girly-pretty, but pretty as in pleasing to look at.

My latest project, was my microwave stand. Shortly after moving into our house, I found a brand new microwave at Goodwill. We're not talkin' like new, but still has the styrofoam on it new. I really like it, but it's giant....and it was on my counter....shoved into a corner. Well, then my mom came out to stay with us for awhile when I had William, and she decided that this was just not going to work. She then set out to find me something to put it on besides my counter. After she checked Craig's List (yes, I take after my mom in the "being cheap" department), Walmart, and Target, I decided to take her to my favorite place to buy furniture- a local Fresno thrift store, 4 Sisters Thrift. They always have the coolest furniture in there. A lot of it is a little more than what I would pay for something, but not all of it, and they'll let me bargain with them. Anyways, after scouring the store, we found the perfect little table that was well under the budget for Operation Get Microwave Off Counter. Only problem was, the paint on the table was in pretty awful shape, and it was red and green. As much as I love Christmas, in my opinion, red and green should be Christmas, and only Christmas. So, I told my mom I was going to re-paint it. (She also bought me a entryway bench that will also be getting a make-over, but it just hasn't happened yet. That'll be a future blog post.)

This is the "before." I got a little impatient and had already taken the drawer out and painted it before I remembered to take a picture, so you'll just have to imagine there's a barn red drawer in there. Like I said, Christmas.

Like I said, paint was not in great shape. Fine if you want the paint-not-in-great-shape look, but that wasn't what I was going for this time.

I went at it with a wire brush to take off the loose paint, and almost all of it came off.

I put on a coat of primer, and then I decided to use the leftover paint from our dining room and living room since the stand would end up in the dining room, and be seen from the living room. (That part of the house is open.) Besides, I'm all about leftover paint.

See! My pretty grey/green antique-looking paint.

Then it was on to the drawer. I used a pretty cream colored paint that I found way marked down at Ace Hardward because it was a mis-tint. I had picked it up awhile ago because I knew I'd use it for something someday. After getting the cream colored paint on, I painted the branch and birds because I'm all about the details. It's an antique piece of furniture, so we can't have new-looking paint- that's would pretty much be the table equivalent of Joan Rivers, and we can't have that. So, it was on to putting on a glaze to make it look closer to its age. (I had already done that step in the picture. Impatient again. Woops.)

I ran out to the garage and grabbed a few bottles from my acrylic paint stash, mixed and then added water to thin it out.

Appetizing, right? When I was happy with my oh-so-appealing brown with just a tad of yellow, I brushed it onto my drawer and table, and then wiped it off with a paper towel to get the antiquie look that I wanted. With two babies running around, I see that color a lot. (Hehe...I crack myself up. :-D Yes, I'm 12. And a boy.) Let me tell you, those spindle legs are a pain in the neck to get paint on.

See? Pretty. This is the almost finished product. But, like I said, I'm all about the details.

This is what was inside the drawer. Cute, but stained, and not quite cut to the right size, and just didn't match my table's new personality and we don't want a table with multiple personality disorder. Burlap however, matched the personality just perfectly. Have I ever mentioned how much I love burlap? Just in case, I love burlap. I especially love burlap in this instance because I already had some tucked away in my ever-growing fabric stash. Nothin' better than making something new from stuff you already have. Besides, I got to use my nifty rotary cutter to get the perfect fit in the drawer.

I measured the inside of the drawer and cut the burlap out with scissors, but then used the rotary cutter to trim off the little bit of excess at the back of the drawer. I love that thing. Almost as much as I love burlap. Time to put the burlap in. Remember what I said about liking to make things out of stuff I already have? Well, for glue, since I didn't have anything else, I mixed up a quick paste of flour and water.

Anyone who has ever let cookie dough dry in the mixing bowl knows the power of flour and water.

My grand plan was to use my newly aquired rolling pin to press it down in to the drawer. Problem was, it didn't fit.

Fixed that problem. It worked perfectly after a little uh...modification.

All done! See, matching personalities.

Here is the finished product.

Today's Creative Blog