frame to chalkboard!

i inherited this huge print from my parents' house after my mom died... the pink floral was not quite my thing, but it was such a big, nice frame, i knew i could do something fun with it!
i decided since i can't do a chalkboard wall in our dining room right now, a big fat framed chalkboard would be the next best thing.

i didn't take any pictures in progress because i was too busy trying to make sure the project didn't become a craft fail. let me explain...

1st i started painting the frame heirloom white. then i realized i paint too many things heirloom white & it's getting boring. especially since my dining room walls [where i want to hang the chalkboard] are essentially heirloom white. as a bonus though, the frame did fit perfectly between two windows. seriously, a perfect fit.

so i started trying to sand off the heirloom white, only to realize that the grooves of the frame are way too small for my belt sander & it was really hard to get much of it off. i got about 75% of it off, stained it with minwax dark walnut & called it a day.

i didn't want to have to cut a sheet of wood to size, so i primed & spray painted the glass only to realize when i tried to pick it up that the glass is what makes huge frames so heavy. that's ok because the other thing that happened when i tried to pick up the glass is that it shattered into about 10 pieces.

well, fantastic.

thankfully, i had traced the glass on a piece of plywood just in case before i thought that the glass would work better [hah!] & my lovely hubby cut it for me. a little sanding of the edges later, it fit like a charm & i primed & chalkboard painted it, no problem.

it ended up working fine, but as a sidenote, the wood was not nearly as thick as the glass, so it didn't end up clipping neatly back into the frame like the glass would have. the clippy thingies are bent a little further in than they should be & i'm always worried the wood will separate from the frame. so far, so good though.

here she is:
tough to get a good picture because of the windows, but see what i mean about the perfect fit? there's probably less than an inch of space on each side. perfect for birthday messages:
& other good, good thoughts.
my artsy chalk script leaves a little to be desired- i can't wait to try one of those cafe chalk pen things! i love having a big fat chalkboard in the dining room!


pretty painted furniture!

i've been really, really into pretty painted furniture recently. i've had some good luck at goodwill and craigslist recently, finding some nice sturdy [but cheap!] furniture in dire need of a little facelift!

here are some fun before & afters:
here's a little more info about this hand-me-down little table, & here's the after!
the infamous end tables before:
and after:
and last labor day hubs & i decided to tackle a project together... our nightstands were very similar in shape, but not matching or coordinating very well. mine was a sweet sentimental relic from my childhood- i remember it always being my dad's nightstand until my mom redecorated & offered it to me. we repainted the plain wood white together & added a new drawer pull from restoration hardware. it's the 1st piece of furniture i ever painted, way back in high school! we did the whole shabang on this one, stripping & scraping it completely down with citristrip [best stuff ever!] then staining the top & priming/painting/glazing the bottom!

here it is before:
and after!

M's nightstand, i must admit, was a bit of a quick grab - we moved here 3 years ago in such a frazzle that we went out & bought a handful of furniture items from walmart, including this nightstand & our t.v. stand that both ended up being a bit regrettable... i know now i could have done cuter & cheaper on craigslist with a little painting & glazing! painting this one made it where i could live with it.

the minwax policrylic that we used to make a nice, smooth, durable finish also gives it that bright shine that reflects the light so brightly. it makes it really hard to see how lovely the dark stained top & drawer front turned out!

nightstands with good bones are plentiful on craigslist, & lots of fun to start out with furniture painting if you're unsure of yourself, want to try a new kind of paint or technique, or want to get a little funky with some color. same goes for dressers, which you can sometimes even find for free in the free section of craigslist or on freecycle!

i don't have a 'before' shot for the rest of these... that dresser, for one, was done before i started blogging... but just imagine them all in that same plain, boring oak finish as the end tables.

this cute little octagonal table i bought at goodwill specifically to paint up & sell... she's listed on craigslist if you're interested & local!

as i'm looking at the before & afters i'm seeing that i've been a bit of a one-note kinda gal... my good old heirloom white with some smoky glaze [with the exception of a little blue apparently!]. looks like i need to mix it up some & do some thing more colorful!

i've got my eye out for a dresser or dress-up trunk that can go pink for my little girl's room, & when the time comes for a big boy bed for my little man, i've got bright green in mind! i even started a whole pinterest board of all the pretty painted furniture i've been coming across, and there are 2 new [to me!] blogs i stumbled upon:

button bird designs & less-than-perfect life of bliss

check them out for some major inspiration!


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