Friday, March 23, 2012

Plywood Boxes for Shelving

I designed these boxes using SketchUp so they would fit perfectly onto my new shelf.
I used 12mm plywood for the front and sides, predrilled all holes, tried out my new countrersink bit and used glue and screws to secure the sides together.

I tacked the thinner 6mm bottom on using nails and glue. I can now confirm that laughing at Dad hitting his thumb with the hammer was a mean thing to do and it really does hurt!!

The handle is two holes drilled in and rope threaded through and knotted at the back.

I then deliberated as to whether I could be bothered to paint them and the answer was "no!" so I covered the front with some wrapping paper using old school glue that you used to have at school but I didn't have one of those tiny spatulars unfortunately and had to make do with a paintbrush!

Here they are in their rightful home!

They might even get some sort of labelling so I can write what's in them and don't have to peek inside everytime I want to find something!

Wrapping Paper Shelf

I wanted somewhere to put all my crafty stuff and wrapping paper that currently just lives in a big box that you have to trawl through every time you want something. Now I'm practically a fully-fledged German, I like things in order and everything to have its own home! Oh Mum, bet you wish I'd been like this when I was younger!! I suppose I had to learn to fend for myself now that I no longer have a little brother I can pay to tidy my room!

I got the idea for this shelf from Ana White's website and designed it to fit in my room using SketchUp. I got all the wood cut directly where I bought it.

To hold the dowel rods where the wrapping paper hangs, I cut holes the size of the dowels at equal distances across a piece of wood and then used my jigsaw to cut out a diagonal line so the dowels don't just roll out.

I attached all the pieces using glue and screws. I used a coutersink bit before screwing in the screws so I can fill the holes in and hide them when painted. The dowel rods are just sitting in the holders so you can change wrapping paper when ever you want.

Here it is all made up and outside ready to get primed

Here's all the holes filled in and sanded over

I also attached some hooks along the bottom for scissors, ribbon, sellotape etc.

The shelf is just attached by using dowels and screws directly into the shelf at the top as the screws are hidden by the boxes and at the bottom too, where I will paint over the screws in the same colour as the shelf to hide them a bit more too.

Monday, March 19, 2012

Bathroom Shelving

Well, the search seemed to be going on for what felt like forever - why are there no nice bathroom cabinets out there with integrated lighting that don't cost a complete fortune?? Not in my neck of the woods anyway!
Like with so many things, I think, "for that amount of money, I could just make my own!"

We had seen quite a few nice reasonably-priced mirrors with lighting in, so I decided to whip up some shelving to go next to the one we ended up buying.

I saw this great idea on Pinterest and decided to adapt it to fit into our bathroom.

I bought some planks of wood from the DIY store, cut them to size, stained them the same chestnut wood colour as the branch towel rails that are also in this bathroom and sealed them with a clear varnish finish.

Here's the man of the moment drilling the holes for the rawl plugs:

Here's everything attached to the wall but without the rope in.

 The shelves are attached to the wall with L brackets and the ropes are attached to the wall with eye hooks and run through the shelves with flemish knots tied underneath. They are purely decorative and do not offer any support to the shelves themselves. I singed the ends with a lighter to stop them fraying too.

To make sure things are kept neat and tidy we will probably get some baskets on the go or something but, for now, we'll show off our wears ... such as the most amazing mouth wash ever ... seriously ... try it!

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Chalkboard Paint

When painting the office, I decided I wanted one wall that was chalkboard paint so I could write reminders for the month on the wall.

Chalkboard paint is actually really expensive to buy and I wanted it in the same colour as my other office walls, so just decided to make my own!

I mixed 2 cups of latex paint with 2 tablespoons of non-cement grouting (that was conveniently left over from when the tile fitters did the kitchen splashbask!) really well until there were no lumps.
I then painted the wall in the same way as the other walls in the office. The key was to make sure it was all covered in a thin layer and not slapped on too thickly.

Once it was dry, I lightly sanded the whole wall with 120 grit sandpaper.

I then "cured" the wall by rubbing chalk all over it and then wiping it off with a wet cloth.

I can now write down what's happening for the month and hopefully not miss another birthday, as I have a nasty habit of doing!

So, now if I look at my wall I've got my half marathon run and then have to call mum to say Happy Mother's Day!

Table Vase

I saw this great idea on Pinterest and decide to copy it!!

I got given this cupboard from work when we moved into fancy new offices and upgraded all the furniture. It's a good sturdy cupboard but looked very "officey". Here's a before picture as I was just about to start painting it and remembered to quickly take a snap:

I taped off the edges, primed it and then painted it the same blue as the bottom half of my walls. I also gave it a topcoat of varnish as I tend to bash my furnture around a bit and didn't want the paint chipping!
I didn't want so much space taken up on the shelving below with the vase, so used much smaller jars courtesy of a guy from work who eats different sandwich spreads of various interesting colours!
I wanted 3 "vases" as an odd number always looks better somehow, so I measured my cabinet and then made 3 marks evenly spaced.
I drilled into the counter and sanded off any rough edges.
I then drilled though the lid of the jar and lined up the two holes and screwed the jar lid to the underside of the cabinet.

You then just have to fill the jar with water, stick a flower in the hole and you're done!
I also have some pretty fake red gerberas for when I don't have any real flowers on the go!

Wednesday, March 07, 2012

Anyone Fancy a G&T?

My lovely little brother moved to the big, bad streets of London last week and is now living with 2 uni friends whose names convieniently start with the letters G and T (if that's not a good combo to live with, I don't know what is!). Anyway, I made him some scrabble letter cushions to spell out his name - TOM - for his birthday and he has asked me to make some for his new pals, gin & tonic ... or Greg and Thom as they probably prefer to be called!
I forgot to take any photos of my little creations before sending them to Tom, so this is the perfect opportunity to showcase my work!
I used material left over from our curtains, but if I didn't have this hanging around then I would have just bought a cheap dropcloth from a DIY store to save the pennies!
I wanted the cushions to be 45x45cm, as this is a standard size of most cushions and Scrabble pieces are square!
I cut the material about 48x100cm so I cound fold the hem back and still have room to fit the cushion in.
I then folded the material and folded the hems back and ironed them in place
I then used lockstitch and very slowly went round from the top of one side where the hole for stuffing the cushion is, all down one side until I reached where the material was folded down. I did the same for the other side and was left with a basic cushion cover.
I bought some simple buttons, cut slits in the material and sewed in buttonhole stitch (wondering all the time when I'm going to invest in my first sewing machine!). I turned the cushion cover out so it was facing the right way, made marks where the buttons should go and then attached them.

Now the fun bit...
I printed out scrabble letters to the right size using a great website called Block Posters and inserted them in the cushions.

I then drew the letters and Scrabble points very lightly on in pencil, put a piece of card in the middle of the cushion so the fabric paint didn't leak through to the other side and then painted on the design in black. I sealed the paint by ironing on it.
Hope you appreciate my hard work, Tom!!