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Saturday, February 4, 2012

French Garden Cabinet

First of all, thanks for everyone's wonderful comments on my posts this week.  I really appreciate your comments.  I also hit another milestone of 50 followers.  Yippee!!!!  Thanks to all of you who made this possible.

For this week's project I have used yet another Graphics Fairy graphic.  Who doesn't love the Graphics Fairy?  This one is based on a garden wreath theme, and her graphic was only the frame and not the lettering.  I decided to stay with the garden theme.  I found this cabinet at the flea market.  It was painted gray, sort of distressed and missing the innards like the shelf.  The gray wasn't doing anything for me so I asked my husband to paint it white so I could sand it back and still have the gray undertone showing through.  I picked out my graphic and then set out to figure out how to transfer my image onto the cabinet.  There are so many transfer methods out there and I have never tried even one of them.  I went to the Graphics Fairy's DIY section and there she enumerates several options.  I settled on the wax paper transfer method that was clearly spelled out by Angela of Unexpected Elegance.  I chose this method because it seemed the easiest and I already had everything on hand that I needed.  She really gave good directions so I will just enumerate a few things here based on my experience.  I wet down the side of my cabinet because Angela got a little darker result when she dampened the board she transferred her image onto.  I guess I wet my cabinet down too much because all I got was a runny mess.  It was easily wiped away and I started over.  Read on and I will explain further what I mean.

The following is a photo of the cabinet painted just plain white.

The following photo is transferring the image straight onto the dry cabinet.  I used a credit card just like Angela did and was amazed at the detail I got from the wax paper.  I was able to use my ink jet printer for this and as far as I can tell, no damage was done to the printer from the wax paper.  Many transfer methods don't work with an ink jet printer and that is the only printer I have that is also a copier where I can enlarge and decrease the image size.

It's hard to tell from the photos but this side is the side I had dampened.  By the time I got back to this side the wood was still damp but not overly so.  The image did transfer a little bit darker but not appreciably darker so for me it didn't seem to matter if my wood was damp or not.  Angela's piece was plain woode and not painted.

I did fit the graphic to my cabinet by first enlarging it on my computer and then enlarging it even further with my printer setting to make it as big as I could and yet still fit on an 8 1/2 X 11 sheet of paper.  I used a small stencil I purchased at the craft store.  Nothing fancy about the stencil and it was around $2.50.  This is a great stencil for working in small spaces.  I think the letters are around 3/4 of an inch high.

Next I took my painter's tape and marked out lines to make a box to surround the wreath.  I also did not like all the white on the cabinet when the graphic was so dark so I also painted the edge of the top in the black.  To dull it down so it didn't look like new black, I sanded it and wiped the words down to fade them out even more.  They were about 75 percent dry so the black wiped away nicely and left me a faded image.  Now I never did any wiping on the waxed image.  I left that alone except that I wanted to seal it so it would not rub off so I used Valspar clear spray in the flat finish.  It did seal the waxed surface so now it will not rub off.

This was going to be a two-part posting because I did another experiment today and although I love the way the cabinet turned out, I need to work on this next part some more.  The inside of the cabinet was nothing to write home about.  This is a newer cabinet that was probably made in China and the hardware for the doors was pretty unattractive and I wanted to camoulflage the inside.  I used what is called a reverse stencil.  I laid it on the glass on the inside of the glass door, and I did not get a good contact with the glass.  The stencil has little holes in it so I think you could tack it to a piece of wood, but for the glass all I could do was lay it down.  I sprayed the inside of the cabinet doors with frosted glass spray and where the stencil was it just left the clear glass.  I think I will try another project with contact paper so I get a sharper image next time, but over all I am happy with the results.  This added another dimension to the cabinet and at the same time concealed the mechanics of the door hinges.  In case you are wondering how strong this frosted glass spray really is, I goofed and one of the doors had the image going the wrong way.  I scraped it off with a razor blade and it took some elbow grease to get the frosting off.  Windex alone would not have done it.
Thanks for visiting my blog.  Have a wonderful week.

The Graphics Fairy
Furniture Feature FridaysFunky Junk's Sat Nite Special

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French Feed Sack Lamp

I found this lamp quite sometime ago and always planned on covering it with burlap and putting some lettering on it.  As with my No Sew Ottoman project this week, I already had this feed sack stencil that I purchased through Maison de Stencils.  I absolutely love this one.  The shade was an off white shade and the more I pondered it, I thought why make more work for myself than I already have.  I applied the stencil to the shade as it was in its original condition.  Sometimes we crafters over think our projects and make more of something than it needs to be (at least that's the way I usually do things).  I used painter's tape to attach the stencil to the shade, otherwise it would have been a little difficult to work on the curved surface.  I think the lettered shade makes all the difference in the world.  It's not a plain Jane anymore.
It's all in the details, isn't it?

Friday, February 3, 2012

Sweet Heart Table

I picked up this table last weekend at a local sale and fell in love with it.  It's perfect for Valentine's Day, however, I am saving it to take to the shop in March.  I want to do a potting shed theme and I'm sort of hoarding all my garden goodies until I have enough to do a whole display.  This little gem is perfect for a garden motif.
 It's a perfect wooden heart with little planks that are not very visible in the photograph, but the color is perfect and it has a small shelf on the bottom for plants.
 Cute as bug's ears.  Do bugs have ears?  Well, if they do, that is how cute this is.
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Thursday, February 2, 2012

Beatiful Valentine's Gift Box

This isn't exactly a candy box because it would hold a whole lot of candy.  Too many calories to count, that's for sure.  It does, however, make the perfect gift box. The top of the box is covered with sheet music and rimmed with silver glitter.  It's adorned with a charming sweet cherub and a beautiful  heart.  The box is held closed with a pretty satin ribbon.
 The ribbon runs through little slits.  Untie the box and slide the top up.
 Fill it with beautiful tissue paper and enclose your gift.  Beautiful indeed.
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Wednesday, February 1, 2012

No Sew Ottoman with Stencil

 This is a postscript to this morning's blog post.  I just couldn't stand the blank canvas from my no sew ottoman so I used a stencil I purchased several months ago from Maison de Stencils.  I love this stencil and it was easy to use.  I poured a glob of pewter gray and a glob of gray taupe next to each other on my palette and instead of mixing them, I simply dabbed the stencil brush kind of in both colors using different parts of my brush.  I thought it would give it more of a worn faded look.  It's still pretty neutral, just not blank.

Furniture Feature Fridays

No Sew Ottoman Makeover

I purchased this little ottoman last weekend at a neighborhood sale.  It was black faux leather and had a tear in the bottom and the corners had been scratched by a cat.  Nonetheless, I saw some potential there and customers come into the shop all the time looking for ottomans and small stools so I figured I would attempt to give it a makeover.  First I picked up some drop cloth from Lowe's and washed it.  I didn't want to do a large investment in fabric and I wanted to keep things neutral.  I made a loose slipcover and really did not care for it.  I felt like the little ottoman was wearing a hand-me-down slipcover.  So I cut the slipcover up and started over.
 Original ottoman below with tear in lower left corner.
 Cut a new square for the top, took upholstery tacks and tacked it tightly.  I had to find the cross pieces of wood in the construction to nail to.  The top was all foam.
 I tacked the fabric all the way around and then tacked the corners.
 Now I took the skirt that I had used on the original slip cover.  I had cut the drop cloth so the hemmed part would be on the bottom so I would not have to hem anything.  I took the top cut edge and folded it down so it would be concealed and started putting in the little tacks with a hammer.  I started tacking in the center of the side.  You will see why later.
 I tacked the little nails all the way around.  My husband helped me.  We found that if he held the upholstery nails in place with the needle nose pliers and then I hammered, the nails went in nice and straight and did not bend.
 Now see how this has kind of a little kick pleat on the one side.  This was the end of the drop cloth that came already stitched.  So not only my hem was done for me but so was the final tacked corner.  I hope that makes sense.  No sewing at all, inexpensive and it took no more than an hour to complete.  If I wanted to, I could stencil something on the top and I might do that.  If I decide to do that, I will be sure to share with you.  Right now it is plain and totally neutral.

Furniture Feature FridaysFunky Junk's Sat Nite Special

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