Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Too big, too small, just right?

I'm getting ready to create some big art on my entry way wall.  Are these sizes of prints too big, too small, just right?  Don't mind the fact that these are crooked and pinned up with blue tape. :)  Imagine nice even lines and crisp canvas like art.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Restoring a Console Table

My very first furniture restoration!  YEAH FOR ME!  This post has lots of pictures, but I think that's only fair seeings how it was my first go at this type of project.

This project had lots of ups and downs.  Thankfully the final result is a big UP, so I may actually to do another one.... someday.  Here is a picture of my final pride and joy, all beautiful and shiny.

I found the original table at Goodwill for $12   WAHOO!  I needed a console table with very specific dimensions for an angled wall in my family room.  I wanted it to fit over the top of the awkwardly ugly subwoofer that is on that wall, so my requirements were pretty tough to shop for.  When I saw this beauty I saw huge potential.  The bottom legs were too short but I was confident I could take them off and find some longer ones.  Gotta have faith... right?

I was really torn on whether or not to sand and stain it or just prime and paint it, which would be the easier route.  At first I decided to prime and paint it.  And since I never do what I decide, I went ahead and started sanding it.  I sanded and sanded some more, using my hubby's electric sanding tool thing.  My whole arm was in a constant state of numb vibrating aftershocks when I was done.  Oh, and I took the whole thing apart before starting too.

Then I bought some stains, thinking I would go for a look I saw on All Things Thrifty

After staining I noticed that the wood was flashing.  Some parts of the table were absorbing the stain differently.  So I tried adding another coat of a darker stain to see if it would help.  It didn't.  So then I talked to my Dad, who is brilliant when it comes to anything with wood and he suggested sealing it with benite.  So I did that and then stained it again.  Didn't help.  Staining this table had become a hopeless cause.  All of the sanding, staining, restaining, sealing, and staining again took quite a bit of time.  I was feeling a bit frustrated at this point.

Here is my table flashing you.

So... I went back to what I originally had decided to do.  Prime and paint.  But I felt a little intimidated by picking a paint color.  On a whim, I posted a comment at one of my favorite blogs, Centsational Girl, and asked her for advice on painting colors.  To my total surprise and delight, Kate emailed me back and offered to give me her opinion on a paint color.  I sent her some pictures and she sent me back her thoughts.  I totally love her style and decorating "sense", so I completely agreed with her.  Go with a lighter color like cream to help brighten up the space in the room.  YEAH!  Thanks Kate!

I primed and then spray painted the whole thing.  Spray painting was also a new adventure for me, so it was a learning process, but I think I got the hang of it in the end.  I used a Satin Ivory Silk by Rust-oleum.

Oh, and I forgot to mention that I went on the hunt for new legs for the table while all this was going on.  I got really lucky and found some on clearance that were just the right height and look.

All primed and ready to paint.

Spray painting... i need a workshop for stuff like this!  The garage isn't ideal by any means.

After painting it ivory I knew it needed something else.  So I steeled my nerves and decided to glaze it.  I used this technique from All Things Thrifty. It worked perfectly.  I LOVE the final look of it.

Then it was time to add my new leg brackets and screw the whole thing back together again.  I was proud of myself, I did the reassembly ALL BY MYSELF.  No husband.  It wasn't easy either.  I can take credit for this piece 100%.  It's such an amazing feeling.  I took about 50 pictures of the final product.  But I've yet to get it all decorated in the family room space, so these pictures of it just by itself will have to suffice for now.

I love how all the little scratches and dings from the original piece still show through.  It gives it a vintage antique look that I was hoping for.

It was such a great learning experience and I know the next time will be a lot easier.  It's great to know that I accomplished this and that I CAN do something like this if I want to.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Chair Graveyard

I have a REALLY fancy dining room.  I've been in the middle of finishing up my family room/kitchen nook/kitchen redecorating project, and in an effort to make that space better I swapped out my dining tables.  The nicer table from the dining room was moved into the kitchen nook and the piece of junk oak table we've had for 10 years got moved into the formal dining room.

I figured the formal living and dining room were already a junk fest of furniture, so why not add to the lovelines with an oak table?  I'm also trying to recover some new (used) barstools for the kitchen so I frequently am moving the old ugly bar stools out of my way and storing them in the formal dining room.  Poor room, it's become a chair graveyard.

Maybe someday I'll take pity on this room and decorate it.  But for now it will remain ugly and a great place to store unwanted and ugly chairs.

Friday, May 14, 2010

Knit Skirts - Mommy and Daughter

I am SO behind on posting stuff to this blog.  It's not that I haven't been crafting or cooking stuff, it's just that I've been too busy to post about them.  I'm going to make an attempt to catch up over the next week or two.

First on the list is a pair of skirts I made out of the knit fabric I bought awhile back.  Addison gave her first talk in church about 5 weeks ago and I wanted to make sure she had something new and fun to wear for it.  So I made her this little skirt and then decided to make one for myself too.  I desperately need more skirts, and this was SO simple to make, so it was fun to do the whole "mommy daughter matchy" thing for once.  I actually think this may be the first time I've ever matched clothes with her!  And I don't care if it's cheesy, cause I loved it and she loved it and it was perfect.

The waistband didn't turn out perfect, but you honestly can't see it when you have a cute shirt over it.

And here are a few pictures of the two of us in our skirts later that day.  I'm sad we didn't think to take one right after church, but oh well.  This first one is mostly a cute picture of Austin, but you can kinda see Addison and I on the side. :o)

I will most likely be making more of these as summer approaches.  They are perfect for hot weather and the most comfy thing I own.  And I'll just go ahead and keep making matchy ones for Addison while I'm at it. :o)

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Homemade Pizza Sauce Recipe

Homemade pizzas are a regular item on the menu at our house.  I make the dough from scratch and we usually like the traditional tomato based sauce and toppings.  Every now and then I'll deviate from the traditional and make DJ and I something with a different sauce and topping, but the tomato sauce is our favorite by far.  Since we do go through a lot of pizza sauce, I decided to come up with my own recipe and make a huge batch of it and pressure can it.

I bought a pressure canner/cooker a couple months ago and have used it a couple times.  It's a bit intimidating at first, but it sure does what it's suppose to and it's a great feeling to know that you've cooked and preserved fresh meals that will last on your shelves for a long time.  It's awesome for those days that you just don't have it in ya to cook.

Here was my first successful batch of pressure canned jars of turkey chili.  So cool!

Anyway, back to the reason for this post.  I used several recipes as the base for my final pizza sauce concoction and it turned out pretty dang yummy.  It can be doubled, tripled, quadrupled, etc. to make as much as you need.

Homemade Pizza Sauce

1 14.5 ounce can of diced tomatoes
1 6 ounce can of tomato paste
3 TBS of fresh grated Parmesan cheese
1 1/2 tsp onion powder
1 tsp garlic salt
1 tsp orageno
1 1/2 tsp Italian seasoning
1/4 tsp garlic powder

You can vary any of these seasoning to your taste preference.  Put all the ingredients into a food processor or blender and mix until it reaches your desired consistency.  We like a thinner sauce, so I let my food processor run for about a minute.  And that's it!  Spread on your dough for pizzas or this would make a fantastic bread stick dipping sauce.