Just keep swimmin, just keep swimmin….

Back in February, I started a DIY project. I wanted to have matching night stands and a dresser for our master bedroom. After reading lots of YHL and Bower Power (among other blogs…. you should see my Google Reader… it’s ridiculous) I decided “Hey, I can knock this out in a weekend.”

Oh, so very very VERY wrong. I found a pine dresser with matching nightstands for all of $100 on Craigslist. Here they are, in all there non-glory-pine-wood state.

BEFORE picture.

With my aunt and uncles van in tow, I picked it up after work. I gathered all my supplies which included a water based deglosser gel — red flag #1. Getting in over my head? No way… Do you know how many times I’ve read “how to stain your pine dresser” instructions?! I printed them out, read blog entries over and over and over again… Thinking all the while, I can do this.

Which I did but it took F-O-R-E-V-E-R. Yes, I was the one on the back porch in the cold with a headlamp at 11 pm. Yes, I was the one scraping that deglosser trying to get the old finish and stain off. Yes, I was the one who looked like a dump truck drove by me leaving me in the cold.

Once the deglosser was done (which DID NOT work as well as I had planned. And I did follow the directions to a T… which is big for me since my hubby always gives me a hard time for missing ingredients on a recipe… another day). The lady at Lowe’s said explicitly… “You have to let it sit for the FULL 20 minutes in order for it to work.” Yes ma’am. I can do that. Which I did… for a total of at LEAST 3 times. When we are talking 8 drawers, dresser, AND 2 nightstands… that’s a lot of painting and a LOT of waiting.

Then came the sanding. Oh, boy. I should have bought my own from the get go but I borrowed one. I went through at least 4 packages of sanding paper of all different grits. I worked my way up from 100 or 120 (can’t remember) to 220.  My trusty literature said that anything lower than 100 was not good for the pine since it was a soft wood.

After piles of sand dust later, I began the staining/painting. I drew pintspiration from here and here. I wanted to make our room lighter but still keep a warm, wood tone. So I decided to paint the outer shells white and stain the drawer fronts.

Here’s my mood board. I have since changed our duvet to plain white since I have a duvet issue. (There are just so many cool ones out there! I just need to play with pillows, not duvets. That gets pricey). I need to revamp the mood board since the media cabinet and canvas/elephants are now in the living room.

Mood board from back in the day….

Blarg. They didn’t dry right. Then it was Spring Break… note: it is now MARCH. Nicolas and I went out of town for a getaway. My LOVELY-BEST-GREATEST-SPECTACULAR-WONDER-WOMAN of a mom RESTAINED all the drawer fronts WITH the polyurethane. God bless her soul. I did not ask her to do it but since we are both helpers by nature she did it and man, they looked killer. When we got back from vacation I not only had a CLEAN house but COMPLETED drawers… staining, sanding, painted and all. She actually repainted the shells with a white gel trim painter that is stuff from the old Greek gods it’s so brilliant. It’s what we painted our dark brown mantle with (that’s a different post).

They’ve  been done for months. I still have yet to finish the drawer pulls. *sigh* Just keep swimmin’, just keep swimmin,….


Etsy Shop….

I caved. For so long, I have been creating invites and other design things for family and friends. Welp, I opened up an Etsy store (EEK!). So far so good. It really is quite spectacular getting an email saying “Jane Doe purchased your item!”

It’s not much, but it definitely helps confidence. I was not a graphic design major but I was a multimedia minor (whatever that means). For me, it meant learning how to do cool stuff with Creative Suite AND learning B+W photography – which just so happens to be one of my bucket list items for “Things to do in my lifetime.” That said, here’s the link to the shop. It’s not much yet but it’s SOMETHING.

Also, here are some samples of things that I have done for family and friends. 🙂 Enjoy!