My bedroom furniture was going through a mid-life crisis, so I decided to help a dressa’ out and give it a facelift. T’s parents were kind enough to give us a few pieces of furniture to get us started on our apartment, including our wooden dresser. I love the thing, with it’s antique key holes and brass handles, but brown wasn’t doing it for me, or our bedroom.
I’ve been gravitating toward greys and purples lately, so I thought a nice grey-blue color would do the trick with a darker slate color on the very top. On a random note, I have also been drawn to bright pink palettes lately. Not so much in the clothes that I wear, but flowers, shoes, prints, etc. I never used to be a “pink person,” but now it makes me so happy when I look at it! Anyway, back to the facelift… My mom suggested using a “less toxic” version of Annie Sloan Chalk Paint, so we went with the CeCe Caldwell’s version of chalk paint and clear wax. The great thing about this paint is that you don’t need to sand or prime your furniture before you paint [gasp!]. All you need to do is follow these easy steps and voila, a practically new addition to your favorite room or space!
Step 1: Remove all hardware then wipe down with a damp cloth to get all the dust off. Step 2: Paint. You may need to do 2 or 3 coats to prevent visible brush strokes on the furniture. Step 4: Seal it. After the paint has dried for a couple hours, you can seal it with wax. Less is more when it comes to waxing the top of your dresser, so with a dry cloth take some wax and lightly apply in small sections. The wax can take up to 24 hours to dry, and even after that I recommend being delicate when putting decor back on top of your furniture.
I’m so happy with how my dresser turned out! One step closer to my dream bedroom…
I hope everyone had a marvelous Valentine’s Day, whether you celebrated with your beloved, best friends, or by your lonesome [with a great bottle of wine and chocolates I hope]! February has turned into a crazy month, with Valentine’s weekend as the mid-point of craziness, so T and I decided to have a cozy night in. We picked out a couple of lobsters [whom I naturally named Larry and Beatrice] from the Maine Avenue Fish Market, a.k.a “The Wharf”, in Southwest DC and tried our hand at preparing them ourselves at home. It was quite an experience cooking a meal of two 3-pound lobsters, complete with an escargot appetizer, a bottle of bubbly [followed by a bottle of our favorite red wine], and a homemade bread pudding. It was definitely a decadent night, but if you can’t indulge on Valentine’s Day, when can you?!
To share my love with family and friends this year I wanted to make my own cards. In the past I have mailed cards with my own drawings, collages, and paintings, but life has gotten in the way of me hand-making cards in the last couple years. But not this year! All of my spare time the week leading up to the big day was dedicated to creating little love notes and I was quite pleased with the turnout. The only supplies I needed to buy for this project were the paper cards and a cute “handmade by” stamp from Michael’s that I fell in love with [how appropriate]. I had the watercolors, pencils, and pens already at home!
If you already craft at home, making cards can be easy for you too! Even if you don’t consider yourself an artist, there are plenty of alternatives to drawing: like making a collage from magazine photos; using stamps and/or making your own [check out Poppytalk’s DIY Buffalo Print]; or a mix of mediums [check out A Pair & A Spare’s DIY Watercolour Valentine’s]! Did you craft anything for Valentine’s Day this year? How did it turn out?
Our last craft night before the holidays featured “gold dipped” pine cones. I thought they would be an easy and festive decoration for friends to have on display in their homes, or to give as gifts! I found a couple of different ways to make DIY gold pine cones, but settled on the painting option [like this example from A Pear of Pears]. Michael’s has several types of metallic paint and inexpensive sets of paint brushes. Thankfully the paint eventually washes out but it took a little bit of scrubbing, so I wouldn’t suggest using your best brushes on this project!
Gold, silver, or copper liquid gilding paint
Fine tipped paint brushes
Pine cones [store bought or found outside]
Cover your workspace with newspaper or wax paper to make sure you don’t spill any paint on your furniture! You can paint only the tips of your pine cones, or paint them a solid metallic color. I did a mix of silver and gold and went for the store bought scented ones from Michael’s. Let dry for at least an hour. Put them in a bowl or vase and enjoy!
It’s been a while since we made these, but I promised I would post photos and a “how-to” for these cute DIY clay planters. I’ve recently started hosting a monthly “Crafty Night” at my apartment, which has been a success so far! Our first crafty theme was miniature clay planters, a project I originally saw on the A Beautiful Mess blog. They are perfect small embellishments for a hallway table or window ledge, and you can hang them too!
Here’s what you need:
Sculpey clay (or another oven-baking clay)
1. Roll your clay out about ¼ of an inch thick and cut a long rectangle that is 10 inches long and 2 ½ inches tall. Cut out a circle for the bottom of the planter that is 3 ½ inches wide.
2. Place your long rectangle piece on top of your circle to create your sides. Roll thin tubes of clay to put on the inside bottom of the planter (where the walls meet the planter bottom), then use the clay knives (or your fingers) to smooth out the clay tube between the crack to create a water-tight seal.
4. Roll out more clay and cut out the design that will go on the sides of your planter.
5. Use a wooden skewer to poke 4 evenly spaced holes near the top of your planter. Bake your clay according to the package directions and let the planter cool.
6. Paint freely!
Christmas is around the corner, and a mini clay planter would make a great gift!