Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Furniture Feature...

Hey, I thought that I would share a dresser makeover. First, meet my sister, Tennille.

(She's the one in the middle). I love her  (a) because she's my sister, and (b) because I'm pretty sure she's the only one that follows my blog. However, we had one of our only "disagreements" within our lifetimes this past saturday over this:

An old dresser that was from a great-uncle's house. She wanted it, I wanted it, she won. Probably because she's older, and she had a place for it. So I thought I'd share what Tennille did to the dresser, isn't it be-a-u-tiful!

Painted it cream, with distressing and spray painted the hardware with an oil-rubbed bronze.

My Grandma and the Before's

So here is my super cute grandma that I talked about in my last post. She is 86 years young---seriously, she makes me look bad, she out walked me the other day (she walks miles every single day). Her kitchen is in need of some help, and I love to help my gramma. Oh, and I don't know where my eyes went in this picture---kinda squinty. This is on our birthday last year---yeah, my grandma and I have the same birthday---we're like twins (only 56 years apart).

And here is my grandma's kitchen before shots. To see the list of improvements we will be making, see the post below this one.

I love this hutch, it's not even real wood---it's like a plastic from the 80's, but it's still going to look fantastic painted cream with a walnut brown gel stain---I'm getting chills just thinking about it. More to come on this makeover.

Monday, August 9, 2010

Upcoming Project...

The best kind of projects are the kinds for grandmas----because we love them. Here is my grandma, isn't she the cutest thing. My grandpa passed away about a year and a half ago, so we try to help grandma out when she needs something. Right now, she wants to remodel her kitchen, on a budget. We want it to look like a million bucks, for about $25---seriously.  I think that I'm starting to realize where my "save-a-buck, look-like-a-million-bucks" genetics came from. This is a project that will be in the works over the next month or so. Every good room has to start with a good design---a plan. Here is the budget kitchen facelift:

Right now the cabinets are oak, like most houses built or remodeled in the 90's. The plan is to glaze them, and then shine the cabinets up with something called banana oil---to look new again. The biggest cost will be new laminate counter tops with brown and tan and cream with a glossy finish. Right now it is an oak butcher-block type laminate, so everything is oak, it needs some contrast and some points of interest. Then, we will add wainscott, a tile backsplash (leftover from my sister and I's houses), add lots of crown moldings to the furdown above the cabinets and around the lighting fixture that is going to stay, and I am going to paint the hutch in the corner a pretty cream, with (you guessed it, a glaze). The walls are going to be a lighter brown that we pull from the countertops. I am looking for two stools on craigslist to replace the old ones that she has now. When I take pictures again, I will post the "before" of her kitchen.

New/Old Entry Table....

Let's start with a before shot:

There's not really anything wrong with this table, but it wasn't working for me. The rest of the furnishings in my living room are a very fancy-traditional. I have a large hutch with nice dentil/crown trim and sits up and nice bun feet and the coffee table has a lot character with a lot of detail and and claw feet, so I've been looking for something to complement them and this table was not making the cut. Then I found this little old dresser on craiglist, that was in need of a little love and attention:

She was battered and bruised, used and abused. I would have loved to paint her a lovely cream then distress it with a walnut colored brown, but it looked like she had had enough distress in her life. And I feel like a black table would relate better in my living room. So I started by sanding the rough spots and removing the handles (some of which refused to be removed) and coating it with a few coats of Krylon Primer Spray Paint (I'm all for simplifying my life with spray paint, no sense in breaking out the brushes and supplies). Here is a shot of the primed drawer front:

Sometimes the primer can leave a rough texture, so after it is primed, I go over it with a finer grit sandpaper (not too rough, because you don't want to undo what you've just done). Next, comes the fun part. I love to see the color go on. I chose a gloss black. I like to do several light coats, to avoid runs. Whenever I get a second during the day, I just run out to my (well-ventilated) garage and spray away. I also love glazing things. I've discovered that my favorite product is something called "Old Masters Gel Stain" in dark Walnut. You can find it at paint specialty stores, and a can will last you forever. Here is what it looks like:

I have tried other gel stains, but this one is my favorite, because it seems to be pretty forgiving---letting you rub it into grooves and work with it for a minute, and then come back and wipe some off. It needs to cure for a day or two after you are finished. I have rubbed it directly onto plastic flower pots, or metal lamp bases and it works wonders----love it! I'll have to show pics of some of those things. Back to the dresser/entry table. Most people wouldn't glaze a piece of black furniture, but I think that beauty is in the details, so I did a Walnut gel stain over black, even on the hardware to give it some continuity. I think it makes it look old and warm, like it's been painted over and over. Here it is:

My camera doesn't do it justice, she's beautiful again, now I just need to rethink the arrangement on the top of the table. I welcome ideas. Here is a shot of the detail on the handle and drawer:

Oh, I so need a Nikon D5000, if anyone has one laying around.