Saturday, December 27, 2014

A little bit of Disneyland

My inlaws love Disneyland,  they go there often.  When we took our girls in October I saw something I thought that I wanted to try and make them.   First I got my inspiration from the Cars land tower.  
Good old Stanley's Oasis.  I saw this and I looked all over for something similar I could buy for them but,  no luck.  I decided I could make something like it. 
I asked around for anyone with a large coffee can but to no luck there either.  I was going to use a small paint can and use paint stir sticks to surround it when I stumbled upon this utensil holder at Wal-Mart. 
Wrong shape but perfect for what I needed if I cut the angle part off.  My 10" saw wasn't big enough but when my handsome hubby brought me home my new Dewalt one,  I knew it would do the job!    I cut the top flat and sanded it.  Later I found ones on Amazon that don't need any cutting if you decide to make one yourself and want to skip that step. I don't know why I didn't take pictures of all of my steps but I didn't,  I think it was the hustle of the holidays or that I wasn't really thinking of blogging at the time. 
  I used my Silohuette Studio to design and cut out the vinyl lettering for the Stanley's Oasis sign and put it on the wood.  
I then applied this wood stain but I pressed it on and tried not to rub because it would get under the sticker too much.  Parts did bleed quite a bit under the edge but I will tell you how I cleaned that up. 
I got my dremmel tool out and put a fine sanding point tip on it.  I went over the edges of the letters and wherever I thought the letters needed highlighting.  In this photo I realized the Oasis part was missing the dot over the letter I.  I went back with the dremmel to fix it.  I also gave the whole thing a light sanding. 
It's a touch lighter but it looks good.  It was around 11pm when I was dremmeling in the kitchen after the family was sleeping so again,  I forgot all the photo steps. 
I know the letter scale is much larger than the scale of the original but with the vinyl letters it's tough to get them to cut out and stick when they are so small.   It's an inspired by piece and I am taking my "artistic license" privledge  :)
We decided to make the base from a kit my kids got at Home Depot.  We take them the first Saturday each month where they do a free kid craft.  One month it was "make a wood mini-pallet" and so the kids were not too impressed that time and just brought the kit home.  Most of the time the crafts are wonderful and they get a free little apron and a pin for completing the job.  Don't hate us Home Depot but we made a better use for the pallet craft by making the water tower base.  My hubby did the major part  of that construction for me,  for fun. 
  I found the cars at the dollar store to go with the theme but I would have liked to get her some metal nice ones.  These worked in a pinch. 
I stained the base with the same stain but it took it much darker than the top did.  I think it was for 2 reasons.  #1 different type of wood and #2.  I wetted the wood of the base with water first to open up the grain (I watch a lot of DIY shows that say to do this) I did not do that with the container and I think that may have added to the darkness.  Next time I would have skipped that step and tried for a lighter base.  Every thing I do is a learning experience so I am just chalking it up to learning for the next time I do something similar. 
I decided to make the little signs that go on the base like they have there on the real one.  The circle sign says "The 8 3/4 wonder of the world"  just like the one at Disneyland.   I took the whole thing outside and I gave it a coat of spray clear sealant and let it dry for several hours outside because it had quite a strong smell.
And here it is on the countertop at my MIL's house.   She seemed to really love it.  I put a little plant inside but I didn't water it (it comes right out easily and it's still in it's pot and a foil decorative wrapping) she can use it for a planter or a spoon holder or whatever she chooses.  For a gift sake,  I thought a little plant was fun and added a splash of color. 
It was fun to make and I think Mater would approve.

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Antique pink and yellow bench part 3/3

The bench is done and it is going to it's new home today.  Last time you saw her,  she looked like this: 
Her structure was complete but she was missing the color and the charm.  We started by priming the bench,  then we sprayed the pink.  I painted the primer but my awesome husband sprayed the pink for me,  then I went back in and painted the yellow. 
We did a few coats of the pink and let it dry for several days to harden the shell. 
When it had completely dried and hardened,  I masked the areas to hand paint the light yellow.  
It took a couple of coats to get the desired color and coverage.  Then we allowed several more days in the heated garage for it to dry thouroughly.  Today I brought it inside to show what it looks like complete. 
Here she is in all her glory.  I can't wait to see what it looks like in her forever home. 
It's a sweet and charming country style bench.  I have really enjoyed making her and I hope her new family loves her for many years to come. 

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Antique pink and yellow bench #2

So the last time I blogged about this bench it looked much like this.  
Since then I finished the planks for the seat. And I got the side rails designed and added on.  As always my kids enjoy helping me as much as possible so here we are getting the wood to finish. 
After the seat planks were on,  I took apart the rest of the footboard to use the spindles.  
I drilled holes for the spindles to set down into and then it took me a few days to design the side rails.
I mapped out a design to match the back original headboard.  Then I had to cut it from scratch on my scroll saw. 
I drilled out holes for the spindles and my oldest enjoyed helping me glue and tap the spindles in. 
I am really pleased that the arms look just like the back rail.  I would have used the footboard but the scale was not quite right.  A bandsaw would have been best for the cut but my scroll saw did the job just great. 
Since this photo I have sanded and everything is ready for paint.  I added some more supports for under the seat because I want it to be extra sturdy so if you were to step on a plank it would hold up well. 
Danger Baby was a good helping hand to hold the boards while I drilled in the pocket screws.  
So here it is ready for paint.  It should be all done this weekend and ready to be one lucky ladies Christmas present. 

Friday, December 12, 2014

Sprucing up old wood

I have a few pieces of old wood that are scratched up but I want to keep original. I have heard walnuts work but I have never tried them.  My Mom & Grandma always used Old English dark scratch remover for making an old piece look new and I have followed in their footsteps.  I am NOT getting paid to recommend their product but if they want to send me supplies or pay me,  that would be cool.
This is the stuff I use,  they also make it for light woods.  
Here it is after.  It looks brand new for being an old piece.  Here is the side by side. 
I love the way it looks after.  Here it is on another piece,  my 100+ year old piano.  This is the before:

The humidity from the swamp cooler is hard on the finish and it makes the varnish spot up and crack like this.  And here it is after:
The lighter part at the bottom is just reflection.  Almost instantly the wood looks so much better and the results last about a month or more.
Here is the side by side.  Looks pretty nice for wood from the 1800's! 
  I have found mine in some grocery stores or on Amazon,  it's definitely a staple in my home. 

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Antique pink and yellow bench part #1

I have been working lately on another bench.  This one is out of another old head/footboard.  
It's not close to being done,  it will have side rails with matching spindles and the bench will be a two tone of a light pink and a light creamy yellow. 

I started with this headboard and footboard but they were so low to the ground that it would not be a great bench to sit on.  After much thought and a lot of going back to the drawing board on how to add height,  it occurred to me after a few other design ideas, that I could give it taller feet.  
Before the headboard was barely taller than the footboard and after adding the feet it was a much better height. 
These are the feet I went with, they are the perfect height addition I needed,  I eventually did the footboard legs too. 
I drilled the bottoms and screwed and glued the new feet on.  I even added some finish nails to help hold the glue while it dried. 
After getting the feet attached on the baseboard I decided to just keep the posts and to use these spindles near the end to do the side rails.
I made pocket screws with my Kreg Jig and made a frame for the bench.  
I started putting the MDF boards across the top.  MDF has a nice finished product but it is not strong enough for the chair frame over a long time.  Pine and other inexpensive woods like to split easily and not hold the pocket screws well.  I like using a poplar boards or better wood for added strength.   
I am nearing being done with the seat,  now just to finish the side rails and to paint it.  It will eventually be a two tone in light pink and light yellow to resemble something close to this style paint wise. 
So that is the first half of my bench. I am going to add seat support underneath going horizontally and then do the sides. After I will do more filling, caulking and then painting.   That is all for now,  stick with me to see upcoming part two! 

Friday, December 5, 2014

Future plans for my camper.

This is my cute little camper.  In the spring I want to fix it up to look more modern and clean.  I wanted to post some photo before pictures so when I get to fixing it up I can compare them with the after. 
On one side is bunk beds for the kids and a closet. (no bathroom) the fabric needs to be updated but the foam cushions are still in great shape. 
Right now my kids love using the little camper as a club house and we don't use the camper to go camping nearly as often as I would like to.  Everything works great,  it also has heating and air conditioning and is great for our little family.  Someday I would love to get a bigger one. (my hubby and I don't share the double bed very well)
Next to the closet is a stove and more cupboard space.
Then there is a double bed for the grown ups.  And it converts to a table with bench seating. 
So that is the insides.  I am thinking the deer hunter wood paneling would look better painted and trimmed out with cute new knobs and add some cute color to make it stand out as a cute and updated space. 
Here are some cute ideas I found online. This red and white one is adorable!  
I love chandeliers and blue so this style appeals to me. 
I would choose different fabrics but I like these light and bright combos. 
Teal and white is so retro and cute!   I really love these two together and I am sure I could get some cute appliance paint. 
I like the idea of having curtains for more privacy for the parents side of the camper. 
I love the idea of also updating the thermostat to give it a more at home feel.  I would love to fix it up cute and then to go take the family to Yellowstone.   I will let you all know when I get started and if you have any ideas for the camper or photo's to share,  please feel free to post below.

Thanks,  Lori