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DIY

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DIY: Handmade Valentine's Day Cards

As a continuation from our last post about the Love Letter campaign for DoSomething.org and Meals on Wheels, I thought I'd share a tutorial on how to make a cute handmade card for your special someone this Valentine's Day!


Materials needed:
Cardstock - One bright color for the card and one craft color for the envelopes 
Hearts cut out of of paper -  use as many colors as you want
Glue, or glue dots
Marker
Envelope printable download - follow the link below to download

  1. Download and print the template for the envelopes on the craft paper and cut them out
  2. Fold the envelopes along the fold lines and glue the flaps together 
  3. Glue the envelope to the card and start gluing hearts in it spilling out
  4. Write a message of your choice for your loved one!
Want another fun Valentine's Day Card tutorial? Head on over to the Etsy Dallas blog to read my guest post with another DIY!


Happy Valentine's Day!

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Super Easy Sugar Scrubs with Kitchen Ingredients

Before the holiday weekend I posted a special tutorial on how to make sugar scrubs from ingredients found in your kitchen and sent a special early edition of it to our Fund on Etsy campaign backers.

I'd now like to share it with the rest of the world! Follow this link to find the tutorials! I'd love to hear how your at home experiments work out!


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How-To Prepare for a Craft Show Part 1.2: Lay Out Your Booth Space and Displays

A continuation of the blog post we guest wrote on Etsy Dallas about craft show setup.

From part one of the Etsy Dallas blog post:

Lay Out Your Booth Space and Displays
About three weeks before the show, plan your booth space. Decide what your table layout will be, how your displays will be set up and where chairs and product storage will go but still be easily accessible. Tape off the booth space on the floor or driveway and be sure everything fits. Once you have a "floor plan," decide how your goods will be displayed.



It is important to do this because often you only have an hour or two to unload and set up for a show. Depending on your product unloading could take you 30 mins or more. Have to set up a tent? Add 10-15 min for that...tables? 5 more. That is 50 of your time right there, give or take 10 min based on the product you make. So it's imperative that you plan ahead on set up or you will either be unprepared or rushing right before the show starts.

What should you do in this dry run setup? Tape off on the floor or driveway (with painters tape) your exact booth space. Bonus points for setting up your tent in your driveway and working with that (and double checking that your tent is in order and you have all your parts and pieces).

Once you have your booth space marked off or tent set up you should consider the following:
  • How many tables will you need and what should their layout be-keep in mind you should leave room around the tables so you can enter and exit your booth space
  • Where and how will my displays be set up
  • Will my displays hold my product?
  • Can I see over and work around my displays?
  • Did I leave work space for myself to write receipts, wrap or package purchases, put my soda?
Try a couple different layouts. You may think you have laid out the best option, but try a few more anyways. You never know what you will come up with and it is a good exercise to do, just in case when you arrive at the show your booth space or location changes. It pays to be prepared with  a few options and be flexible.

Missed Part 1.1? Find it here:

How-To Prepare for a Craft Show Part 1.1: Make Enough Product



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Craft Party Photos!

We had a great time at the Etsy Dallas Craft Party and wanted to share some photos! Thanks to all who came out and to Etsy and Etsy Dallas for putting it together :)




 




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How-To Prepare for a Craft Show Part 1.1: Make Enough Product


Last week I shared the link of part one on how to prep for a craft show that I wrote for Etsy Dallas. As promised, I wanted to delve in a little deeper into some of these topics for you to really create a comprehensive resource for newcomers. We were once new too, and have pictures of the hot mess we were at our first show to prove it! Thanks to other seasoned crafters we found our way and now can happily pay that advice forward.

From part one of the Etsy Dallas blog post:

Make Enough Product
First and foremost you need product – and plenty of it. You should aim to still have a relatively full display toward the end of the show. If your booth looks empty, you might get passed by. Depending on your price points, you should expect to sell 1/4 to 1/3 of the inventory you bring. The best way to be prepared is to make a production schedule and try to stick to it. Then bring everything to the show, even if you aren't sure you will sell it.

There are many formulas for how to arrive at how much to make and bring to a craft show and I will cover more of them here. Some things to keep in mind for this is what kind of product you sell, your price points, and how much it takes to fill your display table. Since a lot of these formulas are in terms of dollars you will need to convert that to units based on what you make. We make soap, and at an average retail of $4-$5 to make $100 I would need to sell at least 20 bars. But if you sell $50 necklaces, you only need to sell two to make that same $100 and most likely will not need to make nearly as much inventory in units to cover your sales.

The next thing to consider is how much it takes to fill your display table or booth. You want your display to still look full at the end of the show (between 75-80% full at least). If your booth looks too empty shoppers may pass you up thinking that you have sold out of everything and you can miss a lot of sales this way. For example, for our soap, it takes approx 200 bars of soap to fill our table, so if based on the formulas below I expect to sell 250 bars, I need to make about 450 in total. Never. Look. Empty.



Here are a few formulas that you can use to give you an idea of how much you should make. I will use the same soap (at $5, 200 for display) and necklace (at $50, 50 for display) for these examples.

Option 1: 7x-10x your booth fee
With 10x the booth fee being your high side target, and 7x what you will more realistically sell.
Booth Fee $100
10x$100=$1000 
for $5 soap that is 200 bars to sell + 200 bars for display=400 total
for $50 jewelry that is 20 to sell + 50 to display=70 total

7x$100=$700 
for $5 soap that is 140 bars to sell + 200 bars for display=340 total
for $50 jewelry that is 14 to sell + 50 to display=64 total


Option 2: % of attendance
If the show you are doing gives you an annual attendance rate (assuming they are an established show) you can use this number as a guideline to multiply by your average transaction. The lower the price point the higher the rate. For under $10 a 3% rate of purchases per attendees is good-that is 1 of every 100 people. For higher price points this rate may be 1% or less if your price point is really high.
Show attendance=2000
3%*2000=60 shoppers
1%*2000=20 shoppers
60 shoppers*avg soap purchase (3 bars or $12)=180 bars ($720) + 200 display=380 bars
20 shoppers*avg jewelry purchase $50=20 necklaces ($1000) + 50 display=70 necklaces


Option 3: 1/4-1/3 total inventory sales
As we stated before expect to sell between 14 (25%) and 1/3 (33%) of what you bring. This approach is kind of a backwards approach to what you will sell. We have found you sell between 25-33% of the merch you bring. Want to sell $1000? Then you need to bring at least $3000 in inventory ($1000/0.33) which is 600 bars of soap at 33% (200 for display + 400 to sell).


Keep in mind that the cheaper the booth fee the lower the attendance usually is. It costs time, money, and effort to bring people into a show, so if the fee is low and there isn't an estimated attendance expect a low number and base inventory off of that.

Also consider the type of audience that is being targeted for the event. Does the target audience for the show match up to your target customer in terms of the type of product you are selling and your price points? Are you selling fine art for $400 at a show targeted to college age audience? It may not go over well.

Always remember at the bare minimum you should sell enough to cover your booth fee + the time you would pay your self for the hours you worked at the show x 2.

A lot of this comes from experience so it is important to keep track of how much you brought and how much you sell, in dollars and units (and by item type) if possible. The more detailed information you have the better you can use that information to help you prepare next time! 



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Etsy Craft Party 2014: Recapture!


Who's ready for a partay! Join Etsy Dallas and other area crafters for an evening of fun, food and drinks. This years theme focus is on transforming photographs into display worthy works of art using a variety of craft supplies and techniques! This years Craft Party will be held at City Craft this Friday (6/6) at 7pm!

Take a look at some of the inspirational pieces our team members have already cooked up in preparation of the event! Bring you own photos (or copies of them) or you can choose from photos on paper or fabric that will be provided at the event.
Photos from Etsy Dallas

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How To set up a Craft Show Booth Like a Pro

A few weeks ago we were asked by Etsy Dallas to guest write an article on how to set up for a craft show. My question back was "the day of? or all the actual work that goes into it?" Both! They said.

The resulting brainstorming session of me and my sister resulted in a two part series covering everything from the weeks leading up to the day of the event. We covered topics ranging from inventory forecasting to what's in our disaster kit.

There were several things I would have loved to delve into deeper, but I'm pretty sure they weren't going to change it to a 10 part series for me! :)
So over the next few days and weeks I will hit each subject in more detail so you can learn a little more of the behind the scenes buildup to a craft show.

But for now, head on over the the Etsy Dallas Blog to check out part one of How to set up a craft show booth like a pro!


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Deck Your Walls

Today's post is all about our Spring Bash artists. This year we have no shortage of talented artists ranging from acrylic to mixed media. Brighten up your walls with some new art from the Bash!


Liz Wiley has a lovely collection of abstract art, I especially love the moody colors of this piece, which is a part of a painting a day series that she has been working on since June 2013!



Monica Wright of Refill My Glass incorporates her own illustrations into vintage postcards like this beautiful piece.



Vintage paint by numbers get an updated and witty twist at Mama Said Studio.



Emile Stewart of Wild Flower Art Studio creates whimsical collage images full of inspiration and wanderlust.



Anna Tovar creates nature inspired watercolors and giclees as well as calligraphy art.


Join us for the 6th Annual Etsy Dallas Spring Bash on April 26th at the Shops at Park Lane!


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T Minus 7 Days to the Spring Bash!

Where did the time go? The Bash is almost here and true to our PnP selves, we are crazy rushing to make as much product as possible for the event. Check out the Handmade Bash site for all the details including the awesome artists list. We have some awesomely talented people at the show this year (just like every year) and you won't want to miss it! In the days leading up to the Bash I'll start showing them off here, starting today with our artists whose focus is on the wee ones :)


Regal Cottage makes classic toys with modern sensibilities

Regal Cottage-Narwhal Rattle



Wren and Rumor makes bedding, blankets and burp cloths in modern designs.




Wooden Leg Named Smith makes handmade and hand painted toys.




Bonjour Mae Mae specializes in accessories for girls and boys.

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DIY Dog Cookies

It should come to no surprise to anyone that both my sister and I are big time dog lovers. Like in a my dog is my furry child and no one messes with my baby sort of way. :)

Last year there was a huge ordeal of dog treats made in China that were making dogs sick. So after immediately tossing lots of treats, we started looking for good ole made in the USA treats. But they are a little harder to find than one would think. Green Pet in Bishop has several options, but the way my 100lb dog snaps them up I was going to go broke! So my sister decided (after much Pinterest searching) that we could make our own.

We have landed on two recipes that have our dogs drooling (pun intended). And even though it may not be too hard to impress a dog with food, I do have to say that both our pups really do prefer the homemade versions over the store bought. Like crack. Doggy crack-no joke.

So here is the recipe for Opie's favorite cookies:

They are super easy, with only 5 ingredients!



I didn't have any dog bone cookie cutters, but I did happen to have a squirrel one (not as random as you may think!), which I thought was still pretty fitting for a dog biscuit. He gobbles them up so quickly, I have since resorted to just cutting the dough up into 2x1 inch rectangles to speed up the process.



Cookie please! Look at that smile!


Here is what you will need to make them:
2 Eggs
1/2 c Canned Pumpkin
1/2 tsp Salt
2 tbs Powdered Milk
2 1/2 c flour (I used whole wheat flour)
water as needed

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Mix all ingredients together in a large mixing bowl. Add water as needed to make the dough workable, but make sure it is still pretty dry and stiff. I found that kneading it with your hands works best. Roll out the dough to approx 1/2" thick and use a cookie cutter to cut shapes (or just slice it up into rectangles if you don't care if they are cute). Bake for 20 min flip them over and bake for another 20 min.

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National Craft Month

March is National Craft Month and the Craft and Hobby Association and Cre8time want you to devote more time to creative expression doing the things you love! For the month of March, use the #Cre8time hastag on your Facebook and Instagram posts, as well as your tweets and pins. AND you can enter to win $500 when you submit a photo of how you are celebrating National Craft Month to Cre8time's Facebook page.



Whether you decide to learn a new craft, or dust off your scrapbooking paper, what will you Cre8time for?

Need some inspiration? Here are some of my favorite sites:

Pinterest (Duh!)-The most obvious and possibly most popular source of DIY inspiration with tutorials. If your interested in what inspired us here at Pig and Peacock, you can follow us @pigandpeacock

Craftgawker-Before there was Pinterest, I could spend hours on this site (as well as it's sister site FoodGawker). Most of what you will find here is super beautiful, it's awesome for inspiration, but iffy on the tutorials.

Etsy-Need some fresh ideas in your medium of choice-look no further than what others are producing on Etsy. You won't find tutorials here, but with hundreds of thousands of sellers, you are bound to get some fresh ideas and inspiration.

Craftsy-Want some more in depth learning? Head over to Craftsy and you can enroll in online classes that will give you more than just a 4 picture how to.

Martha Stewart-Lets face it, because she is the queen of DIY and crafts.

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Candle Burning Tips

Woo! It got cold this past weekend here in Dallas! Time to bundle up with some blankets and relax at home with your favorite holiday candle burning to fill your home with yummy smells.

So we thought it would be a good time to post some candle tips to help you burn your candles safely and help you get the most burn time out of them.

A little science lesson first though...Just exactly how does a candle work? Understanding this process is important for candle makers but will also help you understand how to use and enjoy candles more :)
The wax in a candle serves as the fuel for the flame and is absorbed into the wick through capillary action. Too much melted wax and you can drown out your flame, not enough and you will starve the flame of fuel to continue burning. This brings us to our first candle burning issue, inadequate burn time.

A common problem we see with candles is inadequate burn time. A candle needs to burn approx one hour for every inch in diameter. When candles are not burned long enough to create an even wax pool, it will not allow all the wax to melt in future burns, and will leave a wall of wax around the wick. It is important that every time you burn your candle, you allow it to burn long enough to melt all the way across to prevent it from tunneling down. Sometimes when a candle tunnels down too far, there is too much melted wax and your candle will eventually drown itself out. When you don't have enough time to burn a candle for a few hours, consider burning a tealight or votive.

Example of uneven melting:



Proper candle melt pool:


Another cause of uneven melting is placing your candle in drafty areas. Not only will this cause uneven melting, but it may cause wax to splash out of the container or the wick to smoke.

In addition to that, another way to keep wick smoke to an absolute minimum it to keep the wick trimmed to 1/4" before burning your candle. A flame that is too big may melt too much wax for the candle to burn and may drown itself out. Don't cut it too short though or your flame will not be big enough to melt the wax!

What can you do if one of your candles starts to tunnel? Take a knife or spoon and scrape out the excess wax that has formed a wall around the wick. This will help allow your candle to burn properly, provided you allow it the correct amount of burn time in the future.

When you want to extinguish your candle use a dipper or snuffer to put it out. This will create less smoke and soot. If you don't plan to burn a candle for a while, store them in a cool dry place to preserve the fragrance.

One last tip-Never, ever leave a burning candle unattended! Regardless if you have kids or pets-it is never safe!

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How to Make a Chalkboard Drawing

All over Etsy, Pinterest, Craft Gawker and other crafty DIY websites you can find super cute pictures chalkboard walls and drawings...How do they make them look so perfect? Well, it is possible that they are super talented artists-it's also possible they used this easy trick.

Let's face it...fonts and lettering are hard to draw perfectly, and chalk is not the most exacting of mediums...So leave that work to someone else. You can find tons printable drawings and quotes online, the one I used for this tutorial is from Etsy shop Lady Lee and Drew Jones. You can also make your own printable quotes-just open up MS Word or Photoshop and type it out, you can find cool free fonts at dafont.com.


Once you find what you are looking for, print it out in the appropriate size. The one I downloaded was too small (and I also don't have a working printer at home right now) so I blew it up in Photoshop and sketched it out.


 Next, turn your image over and rub chalk all over the back so it covers all of the printed image on the other side.



Once the back is covered in chalk, tape your image onto the wall and make sure it is level. Use painters tape if you have it to protect your walls.



 Now you're ready to trace. Use something with a wide enough tip that it will transfer the chalk clearly to your wal l(but not too big that smaller text looks blurry). My image was pretty large so I used a pencil eraser-I also liked it because it was soft and wouldn't leave indention in my wall.



 Once you're done with that you can pull your printed image off the wall and you should be left with a good transfer of the image on your wall. Fill in any gaps in the drawing by hand, and clean up any smudges or unclean lines with a q-tip.


I have always liked this quote, and while it is fitting for most occasions, I think it is especially so during this time of year. With all the go go go of the holiday season, remember that you can say NO to the crazy in your life...sometimes it is better to skip that next holiday party and relax with a glass of wine at home :)


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DIY Refrigerator Side Storage

As I have mentioned before I live in a loft, and for those of you that know about loft living, you know there is absolutely no storage space. At. All. So I am on a constant quest to find ways to store and contain all the stuff in my house. I also want to pull the doors off my kitchen cabinets-but where will I put all the random food stuffs (because it is highly unlikely that I will keep that organized-ever).

Then I came across this gem on Pinterest-a skinny storage rack that goes between your wall and your fridge-genius! After some measuring, I was off to Home Depot.

Classy Clutter Canned Food Storage


I measured that I have 4.5” of space between my wall and fridge and my fridge is about 70” tall. I wanted the whole thing to be able to fit completely behind my fridge and be hidden when not in use, so I measured it for 2’ deep and 65” tall (the casters on the bottom are approx 3” high). I guesstimated that I would need a max of 9 shelves, but I ended up only using 7.

Supplies you will need:
  • 2 1x4’s cut to the desired height you need
  • 2 1x4’s cut to the desired depth you need
  • 7 1x4’s cut to be 1.5” shorter than your desired depth
  • 7 3/8” wooden dowels cut to 1” shorter than depth, or if you want to be fancy/lazy like me you can use inexpensive telescoping curtain rods (keep in mind this will add 3/8” to the width of the shelves)
  • 1 Drawer Pull
  • 4 2” metal casters
  • 1 thin board cut to the total external dimensions of your shelf


Tools you will need:
  • Drill
  • Wood screws
  • 2” nails
  • Finishing nails
  • Hammer

Start by putting all boards together to make the main structure. I used two screws per shelf to secure them to the frame. Play around with placement of the shelves to make sure they will fit everything you need. I had some shelves at 7” tall and others at 11”.



 Attached the rods to front of shelving approx 1.5-2” above each shelf using a finishing nail on each side. If you would like to go the dowel route, see below.

(Dowel Instructions: Drill holes for dowels that are about ¼” from the edge and about 1.5”-2” from the shelf. Insert dowels into holes. Use wood glue for extra support).


Next, paint your cabinet and back board. Since the wall that I was putting this against is painted black chalkboard, I decided to paint the cabinet with leftover chalkboard paint so it would “disappear” when not in use. The backboard I used was MDF chalkboard, and the rods were already black so I left them as is. 

Then attach the backboard to the frame using finishing nails all the way around the perimeter. Attach the casters and the handle and you're done!


Remember, this storage is not attached to anything that keeps it upright. Strategically placed casters will help keep it balanced, but DO NOT pull this all the way out and think it will balance on it’s own. When I pull mine out I usually leave the last inch or two behind my fridge for stability.

The final product look like this:



After using my new storage for a little while, I can offer some suggestions that may or may not improve on this design…
  • I would probably buy rigid casters instead of swivel casters. There is always one caster that wants to turn around wonky and makes the shelf hard to pull out
  • I would also consider attaching the unit to a track mounted on the wall so it was anchored to something to keep it from tipping over if you accidentally pulled it out all the way. This would require pulling the fridge out to install, so it’s not worth it for me, but if you had small kids at home it might be worth it

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Adventures in DIY Home Improvement-Reclaimed Wood Shelves

I decided recently that I wanted to update the decor in my loft and give it a more industrial feel. Among the many things on my list, I want to change up my gallery wall where my photographs are displayed. When I originally hung the photos, I was excited, but I quickly realized covering a 9x8 section of my wall a) cut down on a lot of reflective light, and b) did not quite have the look I was going for.

Then I came across this pin on Pinterest and it was perfect-I love the look of the reclaimed wood, and the industrial feel. Off to Etsy I went, shopping for reclaimed wood shelving...I am truly impressed with the level of craftsmanship I found there, but no one had 7' shelving, and at the prices listed for 3-4' I wasn't going to be able to afford it anyways!



So I turned to the internet for a DIY solution and found this great tutorial: the simple life: Lusting for [Restoration Hardware] and decided that I could handle making them myself. The only difference is I didn't really want to beat up the wood shelving myself, so I set off to try to purchase some reclaimed wood. After looking up some local architectural salvage places in the area, I found some great reclaimed wood...$150 for 15' (I need 35' total), maybe it was reclaimed from somewhere really fancy, but it was too much to pay for old planks. I finally ended up at Orr Reed Wrecking, and jackpot! Found nice old weathered wood planks for 50 cents a foot (happy dance)! They even offered to cut them to the length I needed.

It took two weekends (and half a dozen trips to Home Depot) to finish-one weekend to finish and seal the shelves and one to mount them. First think I did was roughly sand the boards to get rid of anything that might splinter. Next it needed to be sealed. I used Varathane semi-gloss and did two coats to get a nice seal on them.The hardware was all ordered from Amazon and Home Depot, and is black malleable piping which has a nice industrial feel.
Black Malleable piping parts to make the shelf brackets.
*As an aside, my sweet dad always saves the Sunday comics for me and I get loaded up every time I come visit :) 

Once the brackets were assembled it was time to start mounting the shelves to the wall. I have a very specific but handy way of hanging things to make sure they are level, especially when you are dealing with large items (mirrors, art, etc...). It involves measuring everything (from the floor and ceiling) and marking the mounting points. Then you stretch painters tape across, and check that with a level-then you always get it right on the first try!
Template to mark the shelf bracket holes

Tape marked off and leveled for where the shelf brackets will go


Closeup of the shelf and bracket

The finished product with my photography back on the shelves!
The "before" shot with the gallery wall-looks cluttered


'via Blog this'

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Genesis Women's Outreach Center Craft Night

Monday night, my sister and I, along with some of our Etsy Dallas team members volunteered at the Genesis Women's Shelter Outreach Center. We set up a craft table to make some fun Halloween crafts with the kiddos while their moms used the outreach services.

We had three crafts the kids could choose from, and they went to town, making at least one of each, and some made extras for their moms :)

One 2nd grader even sang us a bunch of Halloween songs she made up-they were too cute!

We all had a lot of fun and hopefully Genesis will invite Etsy Dallas back to do more fun craft nights!



 


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How-To Tuesday Give an Old Dresser a New Look

A friend came over the other day and asked me where I found one of my dressers. I told her it was the same one I have had since I lived at home with my parents! I have updated it since then and she asked me how so I thought I'd re-post the how to-from the old blog....
I had been wanting a new dresser for a while-the one I had was super old and UGLY. But when I decided to buy a new one, my car decided to have a complete meltdown. New steering wheel column, new shocks, more freon, and work on my brakes. Ugh. So I was stuck with my old dresser, that I would throw away in a heartbeat, if I didn't need the storage (a necessity in loft living).
I decided to take matters into my own hands and try to transform my ugly dresser into something I could live with. I don't have a "before" shot, but this is pretty much what my dresser looked like:

Generally an OK dresser, if your 5 or have a French countryside decor theme at home.

The inspiration for this project came from some items in my home, a few paintings from local artists and a floral arrangement. These all have pops of colors, like orange, red and tourquoise.
All my inspiration artwork were from local Dallas artists-April Greenlee, Jennifer Morgan and Jacque Forsher

It was pretty easy to redo the dresser. First I removed all of the hardware, then lightly sanded the entire piece. I removed all of the drawers and painted the frame first, then all of the drawers-all in a bright tourquoise semi gloss. I wanted a super glossy finish, so I added an additional coat of high gloss polycrylic. Next I hunted down some cute hardware to replace the original ones. I found some inexpensive red and white pulls that I though would pull the look together nicely.
Total cost: $8 for paint at home depot, $8 for Polycrylic, $40 for the hardware = $56!


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How to Make New Wood Look Old and Distressed

As part of my loft redecorating spree, I am in constant search for old, rustic looking storage. I have seen lots of storage units built with old wooden crates and loved the look. In my search down the antique stores on Riverfront, I found several, but they were pricey and none were the same size. But then I found these brand new and shiny wooden crates at Home Depot for around $10! The only problem was they were brand new and shiny, not old and weathered.
I knew I could stain it, but I wanted the wood to look old, and staining just doesn't give you quite the same effect. After some google searching, I decided on the steel wool and vinegar plan of attack and am surprised at how well it works!

What you need:

  • Vinegar-regular or apple cider
  • Steel wool-I used #00 or finer
  • Container
  • Paint brush
  • Well ventilated area-to escape the vinegar smell
Pour the vinegar into your container and drop in a torn up a piece of steel wool . Regular vinegar will leave a grayish cast on the wood, and apple cider vinegar will leave it more rusty colored. I started with apple cider and then moved to regular because that's all I had. Leave the vinegar/steel wool mixture for at least 24 hours. The longer you leave it the darker it will get.
Grab your paint brush and apply a liberal wash of the liquid over your bare wood. At first it won't look like much, but pretty quickly you will start to see it oxidize the wood. You can also brew some black tea and stain your wood before you brush on the oxidizing solution for a darker finish.


About 30 min after painting with oxidizing solution


Finished crate after sitting outside for a few days


 Once your piece has dried completely you can leave it as is, or seal it if it might be exposed to liquids (like a coffee or end table). Depending on the look you want you can use a polyurethane seal like Verathane (I like the matte finish) or a wax seal. Since I will be using this crate for office storage I left it as is. My plan is to buy some more of these crates and build a shelving/storage unit with them kind of like this:







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