Tag: weekend projects

DIY Craft Project: Dining Room Table Repaint

I have always wanted a bench, farmhouse style table, and years back I got my wish. My Uncle’s Mom had one they needed to find a new home for while prepping their house to sell. I immediately jumped on it, and brought it home to complete our dining room. Although the finish was darker than what I planned, it worked well in our small, and very bright dining room. However, once little man Cooper came in the picture, things began to change.

As Cooper hit his milestones, smiling, laughing, sitting up, crawling, and walking, our house felt smaller and smaller. His toys began taking over our small living room and I began brainstorming some alternatives. I eventually decided it was time to say goodbye to our sweet dining room. We rarely ate in there, only when we entertained guests, and it wasn’t the best use of the space. It has since been transformed into Cooper’s playroom. It was the perfect solution. It’s situated right off our living room, and we can easily gate the doorway, to keep him in and dogs out. It was tight as a dining room, it was converted form a porch to a room years before we purchased the house, but it’s the perfect size for an almost two year old and his things.

The loss of the dining room meant I had to move around and store some of my beloved furniture. If you read my blog, you know I collect pieces of furniture like people collect jewelry. Each piece is special, important, and carefully selected. My beautiful, white, round kitchen table is now living in our attic. Hopefully that is a temporary spot, once I have a studio space or larger kitchen it will come back out to the light of day. Our farmhouse table was moved to take the spot my kitchen table used to occupy. I decided this was the better choice, since this offered more seating. The dining table is slightly large for the space, it must be pulled out if we ever have enough people to seat around it. But, it gives us a place to entertain and eventually have family dinners.

The dark wood that once worked in the dining room suddenly felt very outdated and heavy in our little kitchen nook. I decided I needed to take a risk and try painting it, shockingly something I have never done on a larger piece of furniture. I did some research, collected my supplies, and got to work.

SUPPLIES:

  • Furniture to refinish
  • Heavy duty cleaner like Trisodium Phosphate (or decent cleaner)
  • Chalk paint, for this size project I used 2 quarts of paint.
  • Paint brushes
  • Rollers
  • Paint tray
  • A lot of paper towels or rags
  • Drop cloth
  • Sandpaper

HOW TO:

Step one: I live with hairy animals, so I knew this was a project that couldn’t be completed in my house. I moved the table and benches down to our garage. I laid out a big drop cloth, set everything on top and got to work cleaning.

Step two: Thoroughly clean the furniture. I recently refinished my kitchen cabinets and used the cleaner, Trisodium Phosphate. It’s a harsh chemical that is not environmentally friendly or health friendly, but it does the trick. I decided it’s better to use it for these types of projects since I am doing it on such a small scale and so infrequently. I didn’t use it for my table, and I wish I had. Instead I used my standard cleaners and did my best cleaning the dust, etc. It worked well enough, but there are spots I think the paint would have stuck better if I was more thorough at this stage.

Step three: Start painting! With chalkboard paint there is no sanding or stripping required, which is why I chose to go that route. Paint a solid coat, let it dry for 24 hours, and add coat number two. This project took awhile because I was covering such a dark piece it took 3 coats of paint. I also had to rotate the piece so I could get underneath and between all the decorative sections.

Step four: Once you have the coverage and look you want, you are done! Move it back into the space and enjoy. For this, my step four was adding a clear coat. I wanted a smoother, slicker finish, which the chalkboard paint doesn’t offer. However, the clear coat I used ended up turning a yellowish color so I do not recommend doing this.

Optional step five: I opted to go back in with sandpaper to rough up some of the edges. I didn’t go crazy with sanding, since the wood beneath is so dark I was worried it would compete with the white if I let too much show through. I hit the edges in a few spots with the sandpaper, just enough to show a little dark through the white paint. I also had to sand down the many drips I ended up with.

I am very happy with my finished product. The fact that the table really is too large for the space is downplayed now that the table is a lighter color. I also love the way my beautiful, blue Crate and Barrel chairs look with the white finish. Please excuse the missing chair, it also has to serve the purpose of high chair holder for Cooper when we don’t have guests over, and I didn’t even realize it wasn’t there for my final picture.

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Craft Projects: Creating Cooper’s Nursery

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Nick and I have been waiting a long time to meet our first baby, Cooper James Panetta. Since March, we have patiently gone through each day, week, and month, counting down the days, checking our weekly updates, visiting the doctor, picking up baby necessities, and checking off our to do list. Now, finally, tomorrow is the day we get to meet our sweet little boy.

The process of expanding our family took longer than expected and we hit more road blocks than expected. When the morning finally came when I saw two pink lines after much waiting, I was thrilled. However, similar to our journey leading up to this pregnancy, not everything goes according to plan. I have had some hard lessons in learning to let go and not get so caught up in “the plan.” I think it was meant to be this way to prepare me for the chaos of motherhood.

A few weeks ago we found out Cooper had a different plan for how he wanted to make his entrance into this world. He decided he liked his head resting in my rib cage, and he wanted to be breech. Despite multiple check ups and an attempt to manually flip him, he very adamantly decided to stay put. Because of this, we are scheduled for a c-section tomorrow morning, at 8:30 am. Tomorrow I become a mother and my life changes for ever, for what I know will be the best.

A natural part of planning for a baby is the nesting process, preparing the nursery. As an artist and lover of all things interior decorating, I was almost more excited about this than the baby in the beginning. After all, baby was going to take 9 months of cooking to get ready, I could start the nursery immediately. Last weekend the last item went into place, and his bedroom is complete. Now all we need is a baby.

The EntrywayHis room is located on the first floor of our house. I love that the first thing I see when I open his door is his crib. I can’t wait to go in, in the morning and see his sweet face greeting me.

Lucky for me I married a very crafty man, and he made the wood and metal sign with Cooper’s name on it. He salvaged wood from a home renovation down the street, a historic 1800’s home in East Lake, Atlanta, GA. It’s full of holes and character, exactly what I wanted to use for the base of the piece. We added some stain and paint, sanded it down, and finished it off with metal letters I ordered from Monson Metal Co. on Etsy. This piece was one of the first projects for the room, and the perfect decor to go above his crib.

I painted the room with a light, turquoise blue color, and a gray accent wall. The accent wall was a piece of cake to complete, even though it looks like a complicated process. I first painted all four walls turquoise, then taped off the thin stripe pattern using painter’s tape. After the tape pattern was complete and I made sure it was well stuck to the wall, I painted a layer of gray on top. Once the paint dried, I pulled the tape off, and touched up any rough edges.

The Room

I found the rug for a steal at overstock.com. I knew I wanted a large area rug to keep my feet warm for those late night feedings and for a soft surface for Cooper to sit, lay, play, and crawl on. The darker color will allow the inevitable stains to blend in and the light color pattern gives it nice contrast.

The Nursery

The crib and glider were purchased at Buy Buy Baby, the side table from Target, and the desk was a Craigslist find from college that I was able to repurpose in the room as a changing table.

Storage Unit

After months of searching for the perfect size storage unit to go under the changing table, I once again turned to my handy hub. I purchased 7 baskets at 50% off from Hobby Lobby and he built the unit around them. In a small room, with a small closet, and no space for a dresser, we had to get creative with our storage. This unit now holds Coopers diapers, swaddle blankets, socks, mittens, hats, toys, baby care, and breastfeeding supplies. I finished off the sides of the unit by adding pieces of the fabric used in his bedding.

The Details

In addition to my handy hub, I also have a very artistic and crafty mom. She volunteered to make all of Cooper’s bedding and we found beautiful geometric fabric at spoonflower.com. I first fell in love the with triangle pattern, I loved the blues, greens, and grays. This fabric set the tone and color palette for the entire room. After settling on the triangles, I found a beautiful gray weather vane pattern for the bedskirt. Although the bumpers will have to be removed when Cooper first comes home, I can’t wait to add them back in, in a few months

Etsy was my go to place when the glider finally arrived and I realized I needed throw pillows. My love of all things Harry Potter finally found it’s place in a “I solemnly swear I am up to no good” pillow from Ander’s Attic. Shortly after placing the order for the first pillow I found the “Boy: a noise with first on it,” pillow, and had to have it. It arrived quickly after I placed my order with HeSheChic, and I was able to customize the color of the ink and size of the pillow.

Wall Hangings

The walls are filled with decor made by Nick, Dekanimal (from Etsy), and me. The Cooper sign is exactly what I envisioned for the space and I love the modern, geometric animal prints contrasting the antique Cooper sign style on the opposite wall. My encaustic clouds piece hangs next to the glider and the my encaustic alphabet hangs on the wall next to the door.

Playthings

Since Nick and I first found out we were pregnant in early spring, we have been collecting items for little man. Plush sheep were discovered by Nick on the app “Geek.” Handmade creatures were found in a tiny shop in downtown Asheville, and books have made their way from each of our childhoods to the bedside table.

New books, toys, clothes, and everything we need have slowly filled the closet, storage unit, side table, and changing table. Nick and I are truly blessed to have such amazing family, friends, and coworkers. Thanks to their help we are set and ready for Cooper to come home.

maternityCooper’s first pictures will find their way to a post soon. Until then, bear with me while I take a short hiatus from blogging and focus on rearing my first born. Thanks for taking the time to check out my blog! Get updates straight to your inbox by subscribing below and please share with others! Thanks for stopping by.


 

The Details