A long, long time ago,
I can still remember, how that music used to make me smile we bought a tractor seat stool at Home Goods. It was an impromptu purchase while on a Vermont road trip because when you see a tractor seat stool, you buy it. Those are the rules. No exceptions. But alas, the tractor seat stool was red which isn’t necessarily my favorite color…not even close…I’m more of a blue girl. But I left it red until the Etsy work space evolved a little bit more. But now…that tractor seat stool is sporting a brand new turquoise coat.
After a bit of color debate, I opted to paint the stool the same turquoise color as the cage light fixture that we made last week, which happens to be leftover paint from our media cabinet in the living room. Nothing like a little color synergy in the space. But my favorite part of the stool’s new paint color, is how cute it looks with the coral curtains. I’m a sucker for coral/turquoise color combos. It gets my insides all tingly ever time.
But remember where we were just a few-ish weeks ago? Red stool with green/yellow curtains. Oh my. Not so great.
Painting the stool was one of those super quick and super easy projects that provides a big impact. As for the how we did it portion of this program, it was our regular old spray painting song and dance. The stool was metal with a super glossy finish. So I prepped the stool by wiping it down with a liquid deglosser, which magically scuffs up the finish without sanding AND cleans the surface all in one step. Then prepped our paint sprayer for painting.
We’ve hit the one year mark on our paint sprayer (a Graco 2900 purchased from Lowes…you can read our review on it back here) and I have to admit, we’ve been having words. Strong words. Like the kind you yell at the dog after he ate an entire plate of freshly grilled bbq chicken (been there). Fightin’ words. I’m kind of wishing we had upgraded the paint sprayer to the next model up, the one where you don’t have to water down your paint. And it’s been a clog monster lately. Live and learn. At least a clog saved Colby from being spray painted a lovely turquoise color.
Next step, spray time. After I worked by Goldilocks skills with the water to paint ratio until I got the perfect consistency of not too runny but not too thick to clog the sprayer, I layered on about four thin and even coats of paint. Three coats almost covered up the red, but not quite so a fourth was needed.
I’m a big fan of spray painting outside by putting down a scrap piece of plywood or some cardboard in the lawn and plopping my spray painting piece down on top of it. It’s so much easier to tackle these kind of projects outside. Then you can leave them out there to fully dry and harden before taking them in. Sadly, our spray painting days are numbered. See the leaves in the yard? Spray painting season is drawing to a close as the temps are dropping and winter is looming. My spray painting trigger finger is officially un-itchy…and gloved.
After a couple days of dry time, the stool returned to the Etsy office space and I happily plopped by butt into the turquoise seat. Such a happy tushy!
As for what’s next in the Etsy office? I’ve got a few decorating/organizing projects up my sleeve. My favorite kinds of projects, the little ones that add some depth, layer, and texture to the room. The kind that really make a space unique and give it some character. Stay tuned.
Pssst…While we were spray painting away this weekend, what were you guys up to? Any painting projects? Organizing? Halloween prep work? Man…Halloween is sooooo soon. I’m officially not ready!
My current obsession these days has been all about the industrial look. Who would have thunk it?! Especially since I work full time in industrial distribution. What I’ve REALLY been jonesing after have been all those gorgeous cage lights. I love an old school looking, exposed light bulb, and those colorful trouble-light-esque cages surrounding the bulb. But the prices?! Have I mentioned that I’m cheap? Like a Ramen noodles every night kind of cheap?! Okay, maybe not that cheap, maybe more like thrifty. So when it came time to light fixture up in the Etsy office, I jumped on the cage light band wagon and DIY-ed my own version which cost a whopping $11.
And before you can truly appreciate the after of our gorgeous cage light, here’s the before.
We call those lights “pig tail lights” and we tend to install them as a temporary light fixture while we’re working on ceilings (sheet rocking, mudding, or painting them) since they stay out of the way. But temporary in this space has turned into a seven-month long lighting solution that had to go.
So when I came across a wire basket for $1 at our local thrift store, I absolutely couldn’t resist. From the moment my eyes fell upon it, I couldn’t help but think, “CAGE LIGHT”!
I had precisely zero point zero idea of how I was going to do it, but was adamant that it was going to turn into one sick light fixture! So I dragged the hubs to Home Depot for an all out search and
destroy purchase mission for a lighting kit of some sort that we could attach the wire basket to. We almost came home with pendant kit until we came across this perfect little shade holder kit for a whopping $6.
So home we came to get to work. The first order of business was attacking the basket. We had to cut the bottom of the basket out to make room for the light bulb and light kit to stick through it. Nothing a pair of wire snips couldn’t handle. We just traced the light socket onto the basket and cut away, making sure the opening we cut out was centered on the basket.
And took the light fixture for a little test run before painting up.
Then out came some left over oil rubbed bronze spray paint leftover from painting a slew of doorknobs in our house. I wasn’t totally digging the white, flush mount part of the light fixture so it had to go. My original intention was to paint it a a silvery color, but alas, I didn’t have any. And since there was plenty of ORB (oil rubbed bronze) to go around we gave the light a little ORB-ing.
And while we were at it, three a little turquoise paint into our paint sprayer and sprayed the cage as well. After both light fixture pieces were spray painted and thoroughly dry, our next step was assembly. Since we were fully on board with the work-with-what-ya-got train and were plum out of plain old wire, we used some flux (typically used for soldering) to attach the light base to the cage shade.
There were three holes in the light fixture base that was meant for attaching the light shade to. So we just snipped off a piece of flux, looped it through the whole, and twisted it around the wire cage using a pair of needle nosed pliers.
And voila…a somewhat assembled, DIY cage light fixture.
That was the easy part. The hard part…installation. After a short battle that I coined “Battle Royale: Colby vs. Light Fixture” (super creative, I know), Colby installed the light fixture. For some reason, the screws that were provided with the fixture weren’t the right size. I guess that’s what you get with a cheap light fixture. But after a couple beers, a few swear words, some new to me, the light fixture was in.
Since the light bulb was totally exposed, I couldn’t just throw any ol’ light bulb in it. I really wanted one of those Edison bulbs but since Home Depot didn’t have any Edison bulbs I settled for the next best thing, a cabinet display bulb.
And done. One DIY cage light fixture for our Etsy office space.
I know it’s hard to tell in these pics since the sun was setting and I was trying to squeak out these pics before losing all light, not just the good light, but I’m loving how the turquoise in the light fixture goes so well with the turquoise in the recently installed shelves. I’m loving the turquoise/green/coral color combo so much that I’m seriously debating spray painting the tractor seat stool the same turquoise color. Thoughts? Good idea? Too much turquoise? Is there such thing as too much turquoise?
Pssst…So I know that’s I’ve been totally MIA these days, but I swear there are good reasons. BIG announcement coming soon along those lines. I can’t wait to share it with you!
If there was such thing as “Blogger Scouts” I would totally be getting my “Annie Sloan Chalk Painting” badge for my inaugural chalk painting experience, making over our living room end table. Not bad for a first timer, huh?!
The old end table was in rough shape but still a keeper. I’m pretty sure it’s the one piece of furniture that I let Colby keep from his “pre-Angie” years. Well, technically he bought it about six months into our then infant relationship. It was a yard sale find at the neighbor’s house at my old apartment in Bangor. It was well worth the $5 price tag. But I wasn’t feeling the color in comparison to the other furniture pieces in the living room. I envisioned it a vision in white…not rough looking dark stained.
Ever since Haven, I’ve been dying to try out chalk paint. So I figured the side table would be the perfect piece to try my hand at it. It wasn’t a precious piece or a large piece, and would be the perfect project for my first go at chalk paint. Just in case I screw it up. So I whipped out the Annie Sloan chalk paint color chart, picked out “Pure White”, and trekked down to the closest Annie Sloan Chalk Paint retailer to us down in Nobleboro to pick up the paint.
Not only did I pick up the chalk paint but also some white wax from Miss Mustard Seed’s paint line. The one rule to working with chalk paint is that you have to seal it in the end and you do that with the wax.
Here comes “Angie’s beginner guide to working with chalk paint”. You’re gonna want to write this down. Slap on some paint, slap on another coat of paint, distress away. That’s it.
This is the beauty of working with chalk paint. You don’t have to worry about smoothing it out real nice or if you’re getting visible brush stroke lines, or if you’re dripping just a little bit. You don’t even have to sand or prep the work surface other than a little cleaning. It’s soooo quick and easy to use. The type A personality in me had a hard time not painting carefully and evenly since that’s what I’ve pretty much been trained, as a type A personality, to do. But once I let my hair down…ooooh eeeeeh, watch out!
I literally slapped on two coats of paint using a regular old paint brush (no need to buy those fancy chalk painting brushes) and then after it dried, sanded the whole piece of furniture down since I was going for that distressed look. I started by hitting all the high areas…like the edges, ridges around the table legs, etc. The beauty of chalk paint…if you mess up a little and sand too much off, just layer on some more paint and try again! Layers of paint blend seamlessly together.
For our Etsy shop, we offer white painted distressed iPad stands. Distressing chalk paint is officially one thousand times easier than distressing latex paint. The chalk paint finish is nice and soft, easily manipulated with a piece of sand paper, and just flakes off in a cloud of dust. The latex however, requires extra sanding oomph and often clumps when coming off.
The final step of our Annie Sloan chalk painting adventure…the wax.
There are several wax or finishing possibilities out there including different wax shades (clear, white, dark) and oils (like hemp oil). But after trying a few samples at Haven, I was sold on Miss Mustard Seed’s furniture wax. I liked the color, it’s ease of use, and the durable furniture finish it gave to chalk painted pieces.
Using the wax was equally simple as using the chalk paint. It was a matter of using a clean rag to wipe the wax onto the piece of furniture.
I ended up going over the entire piece twice, waiting a few minutes in between coats for dry time, to make sure I waxed all the spaces I needed to. In total, sanding AND waxing took a whopping 30 minutes to finish.
After about an hour of dry time, I moved the
beer holder end table back into it’s rightful position next to Colby’s “spot” on the couch. #thegoodwife
And soaked in the beauty of how the refreshed white end table plays off the breezy, white curtains with wood toned blinds. The living room is really starting to go down the beach cottage road. Oh…who I am kidding, we’re so far down that road we’re just about ready to turn back. Modern bohemian look time anyone?
Here’s a closer view of the end table so you can really see the distressed edges on the legs and table surface.
You know how when you’re slowly working on morphing a room into something just a bit more cohesive and more you? And you have that ugly thing? Then you make the ugly thing not so ugly or replace it with something oh so perfect? And then something else turns into the ugly thing?
The end table used to be that ugly thing in our living room…until I painted it. Now it’s a toss up among the too-small-and-ridiculously-dirty rug, the yellow toned coffee table, or the pink-coduroy-like-hand-me-down chairs. Me thinks a new rug is in order, the coffee table is also getting a white painting makeover, and those chairs are getting slip covered (with drop cloths perhaps?!). But now that I have the chalk paint itch (not to be confused with other not-so-pleasant itches), that coffee table just might be next on my list. Or refinishing those 11 porch windows we started but have still yet to finish. Doh!
Pssst…Have you guys tried chalk paint? Did you love it? Hate it? Do tell! And does it make you want to paint everything in your house with it? Dog included? Oh Goose…..here Goose-ie, Goose-ie, Goose-ie!
The guest room/craft space refresh continues, this time in the form of a little lighting switcheroo. We needed to switch out the black lamp (on the desk in the left pic) since it was too tall for the slanted ceiling. So off it went to thrift store and we replaced it with a brass finish pharmacy floor lamp. Game day bucket go boom (football season is back…I couldn’t resist)!
So here’s the obligatory closeup of the too tall desk lamp. I’m pretty sure the lamp shade is permanently bent in that position from being wedged under the slanted ceiling for so long. The lamp also needed to be on the other side of the desk since that back corner is kind of dark and dank. Because of the slant, I envisioned a floor lamp replacing this guy.
And to be more precise, I had envisioned one of these hotties to grace our guest room.
All the lamps are from Lamps Plus and can be found here, here, and here. The only one I could really afford is the $99 dollar guy, because let’s face it, I’m a cheapskate. But even so, the price was still a little high for my cheapskate ways. So I put it off. Put off purchasing the lovely lamp until I got back from the Haven Conference. Just one day after coming back from Haven I had the thrifting itch. That’s what spending three days with 400+ DIYers does to you. And what to my wondering eyes did appear…a brass pharmacy lamp in a hot mess of thrift store lamps.
And for $7.99….really?! How could I not bring it home?! It was just a fraction of the cost of buying it new. So I threw caution to the wind and bought it without even testing it out to see if it worked. I live dangerously. Thankfully, it worked like a charm. It even came with a working light bulb. But the $7.99 lamp needed some work in the refinishing department.
The bottom was a little…well…a picture says a thousand words.
The top part was in better condition but it still could use a little paint makeover.
But it was nothing a $2 can of spray paint from the craft store (AC Moore to be exact….with a coupon) couldn’t fix. Touch ‘n Tone to the rescue! This is where I picture Under Dog swooping in with his cape to solve the lamp refinishing mystery.
Spray painting light fixtures seems to be my latest thing (read about how we spray painted a few task lamps for the Etsy office here) and my go to prep work routine includes wiping down the entire surface with liquid deglosser and wrapping the cord in a plastic bag and taping it up. Works like a charm every time.
Three thin and even coats of paint later…things were looking a little more even and a little less nasty.
Normally I would give the lamp a day or two to dry in the sun or down in the basement but it’s like it’s hurricane season or something AND we live in the South (not in Maine) because it won’t stop raining. But no worries…we’re working on our ark. Actually, we were debating whipping out the plastic sleds today to try riding them down the hill/road as the river of rain runs down it. Now that is my idea of a good time…well…until one of us ends up in the hospital (my money is on Colby injuring himself first).
Anyway, back to the lamp. I love having a floor lamp in here now because of it’s versatility. We can tuck it over by the couch/futon/fold down bed for when guests stay over:
Or we can tuck it over in my little sewing area. Not that I actually sew…but if I ever work up the nerve, at least my space will be well lit and I can’t blame the crooked seamstress lines on lack of light.
So there you have it…an $89 savings on a brass pharmacy lamp for our guest room. Total cost of the lamp project…$10 ($8 for the lamp and $2 for the spray paint). Now that’s what I call thrifty!
Pssst…Alright readers, what have you scored lately at your local thrift store? Any sweet finds? Or cute makeovers? Do share!
Let’s set the record straight. We have this room in our house with multiple personality disorder. It started off as an “office” and then turned into a “craft room”, but when we decided to turn our “then guest room” into an “Etsy office” the “craft room” became the guest room. So for the record, I’m calling this space the craft room/guest room. Although a better name for it might be “Goose’s room” since this is where he sleeps every night and is pretty much the only person/dog using the room. Regardless of what we call it, the room is a mess.
Messes like these are the kind that send me to my spinning place. I start cleaning up one corner and then I find myself washing the windows which leads to vacuuming up all the Goose hairs and questioning how so much hair can come off one little dog, and three hours later I’m still in the room cleaning, reorganizing and spiffing things up. General spinning. But the big problem area of the space…the ginormous pile of blankets hanging out in the corner. There used to be an equally ginormous basket there to corral the mess but that has since been relocated to the Etsy office. So when I found a $5 basket at a local antiques store, I brought it home with a purpose.
It’s not often that I pass by a basket in any store that I don’t like, but I really dig the pseudo falling apart-ness going on with the basket. And for $5 smackers? Pssshhhht…purchase! Even if it falls apart in a year, that’s still five bucks well spent.
The one thing I didn’t dig was the color, which is something I could easily rectify with my itchy spray painting trigger finger. So out came my new best friend, liquid deglosser, to give the entire basket a good wipe down before spray painting.
I love liquid deglosser. Seriously, liquid deglosser companies of the world, sign me up for blog sponsorships. I accept payment in forms of liquid deglosser and liquid deglosser only. Deal? The stuff is amazing. Not only does it do what it says and degloss a surface to make it easier for paint to stick to it, it’s also an amazing cleaning agent. It’s like sanding AND cleaning all in one step! It cleaned up the basket so well that it was actually stripping the green paint right off of it.
After deglossing, I layered on about four super thin and even coats of paint using our paint sprayer, which we’re still loving FYI. Although, more often than not we find it annoying when we have to water down our paint before spraying.
Once the basket was painted, I let it cure and harden for the next two days before plopping it back upstairs in the guest bedroom. I packed up all the extra sheets, pillows, and the feather bed that we use to make up the guest bed, and put them in the attic. Since we have guests stay over so infrequently, it didn’t seem necessary to keep those out. So a Grandma Gert quilt and a pillow is all we really needed in here.
And with that, a refreshed guest bedroom/craft room.
The extra Princess Goose blankets got the boot and we tucked his bed underneath the couch/fold out bed. At night when we tuck Goose in bed for the night (I wish we were kidding…he gets a nighttime cookie too…go ahead…judge…no wonder he’s a princess), we can just pull out the bed and plop it on the couch. No floor sleeping allowed for Princess Goose. Then the pillows can just get tucked into the new basket to avoid drowning in Goose hairs again.
I didn’t realize our Bob Ross, happy little accident until taking pics of the room. Notice the coordinating Goose bed fabric with chair recovering fabric? I wish I could say I meant to do that, but no.
I do have a couple of little refreshes for this space coming down the pipe including a light fixture revamp and some artwork. It’s been so long since we’ve done anything to this room that it seems like a good time to give it a little makeover. Small tweaks and small victories.
Pssst…Any small victories in your neck of the woods? Did any of you also tackle some much overdue cleaning this weekend?
Pssssssst…So I’m trying to jump back in the blogging every day saddle this week. I’ve been a super slacker blogger lately thanks to a day job and essentially a second full time job with the Etsy shop. But I have plans to rectify that situation which I CAN’T WAIT to share with you! Very exciting things happening here at the Campbell house. So check back tomorrow for another brilliant post! Oh, who am I kidding, more like sub-par, full of bad puns, is anyone really reading this kind of post. Until tomorrow…Angie…out.