Wednesday, September 23, 2015

DIY: Upcycle Toolbox

Hey Guys!

In this blog, I'm sharing a DIY upcycle that we did with an old rustic, DISGUSTING toolbox. I may have developed a personal vendetta against this box after several close calls with needing a tetanus shot. This toolbox had been through it all: rust, dings, peeling paint, mouse excrement (that's right, I said excrement) and spider webs that could substitute for gorilla glue. Let's just say, if there was a tool in this box that I needed, I would just go without....UNTIL NOW!

Here's how we did it: 

First, we started with a trip to Home Depot to get some spray paint. We used Rustoleum Primer and Metallic Rubbed Bronze. I have found that Rustoleum is by far the superior brand for spray painting projects! For this project, we initially bought 2 cans of primer and 3 cans of metallic, but we found that we actually needed about 6 cans of metallic. Jackson came along for the ride, of course!

We then started stripping down the toolbox. First, we took off the hardware.
(I told you it was rusted.)

Using steel wool, we worked some of the rust and chipping paint out of the drawers.

We vacuumed the entire inside of the toolbox including the drawers and interior cavity.

Using a orbital sander, we smoothed out the old paint on all exterior and interior surfaces to help the primer and paint adhere. 

All smooth!

Here goes the primer! 

Surprisingly, the primer went on very well. 

We discovered this sprayer head at Home Depot that attaches to the paint can for easy application. It was a lifesaver for such a larger project. 

Coats, coats and more coats. 

Don't forget the drawers.

Fifth can.

...and final coat!!!

We polished the handles, reattached them and fixed her up with a receiver to play music in the garage. 

So much better!

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Monday, September 14, 2015

End of Summer DIY: Driftwood Art

Hey Everyone!

In this post I'm sharing our recent visit to the river where we explored some sand bars in search for driftwood. Summer is almost over so we're enjoying a few final trips out on the water before the weather cools down. For years, my family has collected driftwood from the Mississippi and Arkansas Rivers and we've used them as unique home decor pieces. Although, driftwood isn't the only thing we've found on these rivers; 20 years ago my father found a Mastodon molar in Mississippi! Many of the existing pieces in my home have some of my grandfather's clay sculptures anchored onto them. You could say that he is definitely our inspiration for using driftwood as a unique statement piece. Now, the popularity has increased as driftwood seems to be making a major statement on Pinterest and other popular trend-setting websites. 

Here are of couple of pieces we've recently picked up:

This piece had a great look to it and I couldn't wait to make it into a tea light holder!

With a little help from the drill press, it was done in no time.

This piece of driftwood is a great-looking addition to the entertainment center. 

This was the largest piece we picked up. I love how it's asymmetrical and huge! It looks great on the living room wall.

Here are a couple of pieces by my grandfather...

He always new how to bring new life to an old piece of wood. My grandfather sculpted the birds and fish from Mississippi clay. 

I couldn't help but to snap a few pics while we were out on the water. 

A close-up of a dried-up mud pit. Even mud can be pretty :)

....and finally, my beautiful Momma and I managed to sneak in some shopping time at the end of this weekend! We are all set with our new fall vest/outfits! Can't wait for the cool weather!

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Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Autumn Mason Jar Tealights

To add a soft glow to my mantel, I used the Autumn Painted Mason Jars that I made for tea light holders. This is super simple, check it out:

What You'll Need:

Rustic Twine
Tealights (I used the autumn scented ones from Hobby Lobby)

How to get the look:

Wrap the top of the jars haphazardly about 9 times, tying a short, discrete knot in the back. Trim the extra off of the knot.

Using whatever tea light you choose, place it in the bottom of the jar. I only place one tea light per jar. Avoid using hot glues or adhesives to the bottom of the tea light as the tea light tin can get hot and melt the adhesive or cause fumes.

That's it! Enjoy!

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Thursday, September 3, 2015

Autumn Painted Mason Jars

For the last two decades, my grandparents have canned wonderful fruits and vegetables from their garden. As I have been fortunate enough to enjoy these goods, my cabinet has slowly filled with more and more mason jars. Usually, they would get recycled for more canning but not this year. We lost both of my grandparents within a week’s time and no matter how hard my mother and I try our hand at the canning process, it will never be the same as it was from my grandparents’ garden.

So I’ve decided to immortalize these precious jars in a way that I can enjoy for years and years to come. I’m painting them for one of my most favorite times of the year, Fall. These jars are especially perfect for Fall as they all have “golden harvest” imprinted on the front!

When I first started this project, I was extremely hesitant about using acrylic paints because they are water-based and typically scrape right off of slick surfaces like glass. I’ve always used enamel (oil-based) paints for this type of medium but I’m trying to be open-minded. By using the chalkboard paint first, I’ve found that it creates an abrasive surface for the acrylic to adhere to and it creates a contrast for the letters when lightly sanded.

So here’s how I did it!

What you'll need:

Mason Jars
Chalkboard Paint
Acrylic Paints (Various colors)
Paint Brush
Emery Board/Sanding Stick


Step 1: Clean the jars.
Thoroughly clean the jars to remove dirt and debris.

Step 2: Using a paint brush, paint a single coat of chalkboard paint onto the entire exterior surface of each jar. Let dry completely.

Step 3: Lightly brush a single coat of acrylic paint on the jar, being especially careful not to brush too hard on the jar. Let dry completely. Follow this process until the desired color is achieved. You may decide that you want a more antiqued look with less coats.

Step 4: Lightly sand the letters of the jar to reveal the bottom coat of chalkboard paint. Too much sanding will rid the jar entirely of paint in some areas. 

Check out how I use these jars for Fall Decor!
These were so easy and fun to make! Happy Fall!!!

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