Wednesday, February 8, 2012

My own clever idea

I am always in awe of the brilliant ideas I find out on Pinterest, and when I receive compliments on my work, I'm quick to point out I've simply followed someone else's instructions. That's why I'm excited that I've finally come up with my own clever idea - one I haven't seen anywhere else and that I think is easy enough and effective enough that others may really love it too: trays embellished with fabric and glass!

I got the idea after finding this tray at a thrift store on one of my routine furniture hunts - cute in its own way, but not my style and definitely not usable year-round:

So, I painted the tray red and, rather than paint the bottom as I've frequently seen, I decided to buy some coordinating fabric, cut it to fit the bottom, and get a piece of glass cut at Lowe's to sit on top to protect the fabric and recreate a hard surface. (Patterned paper would also work well in place of fabric.)

The red tray measures 14 x 14, and the fabric and glass were each cut to 13.25 x 13.25 and they fit perfectly (thanks to my dear husband for helping me get the measurements right!). The dark wood tray is from the always wonderful West Elm, and measures 12 x 12. Fabric and glass cut to 11.5 x 11.5 fit perfectly in this one.

This project is definitely affordable too - just 1/2 a yard of fabric is plenty, and I find plenty of great options in the clearance and sale racks so it usually costs very little. Each piece of glass ran around $5 at Lowe's. My thrift store tray was $4.99, and the West Elm one was $22 but worth it to me since I've wanted one for so long. Other cheap tray options are available at Jo-Ann Fabrics, which carries them in both the unfinished wood section and in the home decor section.

The sky is the limit on options for these trays, and I think they'd make a great gift too.
In the case of the red tray, it was a fun way to overhaul a thrift store find with potential, and for the dark tray, it was an easy way to customize a mass-produced item and make it coordinate with the other decorations that will go in our bathroom once remodeled.
Speaking of our bathroom, here's a sneak peak at what the wall art will be, also using the chevron fabric - demolition begins on Friday, so stay tuned for updates!

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

My first client!

I was thrilled with how quickly the first dresser I put out there sold. I even had a few interested people follow up afterward - one in particular wanted it for the nursery for her first child, who will arrive in a couple months. I offered to keep my eye out for another piece that I could redo for her, and as luck would have it, a few days later I found it at a thrift store near my house:

This one was another great find - it reminded me alot of the one I found and redid for myself, and my client really liked that one too so it was a great fit. Because I knew who the buyer would be, I was able to give her some choices on which of the paint swatch colors we'd use, as there were only four drawers instead of five. From there, I got to work redoing the dresser for her, as she wanted it this past Sunday. It was the quickest turnaround I've done yet, but it was actually fun having a client deadline to meet!

Here's how it turned out - aren't the drawer pulls great? Very retro but cool. Also, just for the record, I have plenty of other color schemes in mind, but the pink/red combo keeps selling so I keep making it! The two dressers I've sold now have each gone in a baby girl's or young girl's room. Now, I'm back on the prowl for the next great piece I can find, redo, and make available in the shop - the search begins again!


Quick weekend projects

I was busy most of this past weekend turning around a quick dresser refinish for my first client (more on that in the next post), but I did manage to get a couple quick craft projects done, too.

One was correcting a not-so-great choice a made awhile back, when I had really been bitten by the no-sew pillow cover bug (originally covered in this post). I had been looking for some fabric that included the color teal for our guestroom with teal walls, and found the below fabric. It did not strike me as looking camoflauge-esque at the store, but once I got it home, I couldn't stop noticing it. When a good friend came to my house for the first time and asked if the pillows were in honor of my husband's love of hunting, I knew once and for all that they had to go.

Herein lies the benefit of these no-sew pillow covers: switching them out is as simple as unlatching the safety pin on the back side, and recovering with new fabric. Luckily, in the case of the camo-like fabric, I was also only out $3 because it had been on clearance.

Here is the new fabric I found to continue tying in the teal. It was from the clearance section so not too pricey, and I think it gets me alot closer to where I had wanted to be initially. Truth be told, these West Elm pillows are completely perfect for the room with their teal and yellow, but I can't imagine spending that much. This $6 per pillow solution is much more my speed!

The other quick project I did this weekend was jazzing up a bulletin board to make it feel more appropriate to hang in our bedroom. My husband thinks bulletin boards are tacky (he wasn't swayed by this recovered version either, I won't lie) but I think they can serve their purpose. There are just some things I'd love to pin up and be able to look at rather than have shoved in a drawer somewhere.

I didn't take a before shot but it was a straightforward bulletin board, found for less than $2 at a thrift store where I typically buy furniture to refinish. After hot glueing some burlap-like fabric to the front and pinning the edges with decorative tacks (all materials from Jo-Ann Fabrics), it turned out like this:

And, despite my husband's disapproval, it is hanging on the wall in our room, with some photos, some Playbills, and my 10-mile race medal pinned up - all things I enjoy seeing every day that had been in my nightstand drawer for months, and in some cases, years.