Sunday, February 22, 2015

Love Letters

After hanging the book baskets in Emma and Owen's room, the wall space above them was looking a bit bleak.  I wanted to make some large art to hang above them and came across some inspiration from The Green Palette's instagram feed.
Brent and I set out to make something similar by first sketching our letter templates onto a piece of 1/4 inch plywood.  Using the table saw and a jig saw, Brent cut them out and I sanded them.
Now that we had a template, we wanted to layer a different type of wood on top.  Luckily, we had a 6 foot pallet in our shop!  Brent disassembled it and cut the pallet boards into a few different widths.
To attach the pallet boards to the template, we used a little glue, then laid our piece of pallet board on top, flipped it over and put a nail through it with the air gun.
When all the letters were done, I gave them a coat of Walnut stain.
I wanted them to have a little color so Emma and I brushed on three different colors of blue/grey paint.
 We put the darkest color over all of the horizontal lines to make them stand out more.
We alternated the other two colors of blue/grey on each plank.
After the paint was dry, I sanded each letter to remove some paint and expose the texture of the pallet wood.
 A quick coat of Van Dyke Brown Glaze always seems to tie everything together.  In the photo below, the left side has been glazed and the right has not.
The letters didn't feel finished at this point, so we chose to outline each letter with a small piece of trim.  After the trim was applied, I brushed on a coat of sealer to darken the wood tone a bit.
To hang them, we nailed in some of these clips...
Hanging them proved to be a bit tricky...but we finally got them level.
 I didn't plan on this, but the colors in the letters actually matches the color of the baskets perfectly.
 I guess you could say we all "LOVE" our new art :)
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Monday, February 16, 2015

Kids Bedroom Makeover Part 4 - Storage

After building the rolling toy boxes, my eyes began to fixate on the goofy gap between the end of the beds and the wall that juts out into the room.  It's only about 14 inches in that space, so there weren't a lot of options - but it was too big of a gap to ignore.  The only feasible solution I could muster were a set of floating chunky shelves to fill it in.  
The shelves would serve a few purposes, storage for some of the kids bigger bulkier toys/stuffed animals and they would also get said toys up and off the ground, which means protection from our dog, Lily.  She's working through a major chewing phase so we have to be extra diligent to keep the kids' stuffed animals out of reach.
Brent built these simple floating shelves and handed them off to me for finishing.
I stained them the same color as the children's dressers and put two coats of finish on them.
It was sort of tricky to figure out how far to space them apart, so we mocked it up using painters tape. When we were satisfied with the spacing, Brent screwed 2x2 brackets to the wall to support the shelves.
The floating shelves slid right over the brackets and he tacked the shelves to the 2x2 brackets with his air gun.
I stacked Owen's favorite book series on the bottom so they'd be easy for him to get too - plus, Lily doesn't chew up books!
You can see in the photo below how the floating shelves match the dresser being reflected in the mirror.
The mirror you see hanging near the bunk beds was a mirror that Brent made about 7 years ago, it's been hanging on a wall on our second floor for some time, so I thought it would be fun to paint it a fun color and hang in the kids' room.  Emma loves to try on outfits and dance in front of it.  My plan is to paint the bunk beds - still not 100% sure what direction I'm heading in with the color, so at some point, the orange mirror and the orange/wood tone bed won't clash :)
After 3 coats of this orange paint, I glazed the frame to darken and age the orange.
The last piece of the storage puzzle we needed to solve was the "book situation".  I wanted the kids to have access to their books in the room but there wasn't enough floor space for a free standing bookshelf, without it getting in the way.  I found these baskets at World Market and figured they would be a great way to keep the books accessible to the kids!
 We hung four of them on the wall between the closet door and the door to exit the room.
 I was pleasantly surprised just how many books we were able to pack in there!
We're now working on a fun piece of wall art to go above the books - if all goes to plan!