Monthly Archives: December 2013

I swore I wouldn’t….


I swore that this year, MOST (if not all) of my Christmas gifts would be purchased.  I work two jobs, am planning a wedding, and trying to have a life (snuggling with the boys on the couch). I DON’T have time to make gifts!! I ended up making several gifts….

One of my favorite gifts was a wine rack. I had found the idea while  shopping for a client at my design job.  Being crafty (in both meanings) I decided I would make it!

It started with stealing a pallet from the neighboring business.  I chose the most weathered for its patina.   I should have chosen the straightest and most square pallet because  I ended up staining the wood.The start

I cut it into quarters and it then sat around my work for a few days.  You will find MOST of my projects, while could be done in a day, have to sit around for several days before I do it. But during this time I bought all my supplies. (Plywood, stain, new jigsaw blades, wood glue)

Then the construction happened! Matt, my coworker, taught me how to use the table saw (which was super exciting and I giggled the whole time). We cut 2 shelves that would fit snug into the pallet and one that would hold the wine glasses. Next I measured and drilled where the steams of the wine glasses would go.  Then we hammered everything together. By this point it stopped looking like a pallet and started looking like my picture!

We had to get an idea ;)

We had to get an idea 😉

We stained it a dark walnut color and then scuffed it up, then stained it again.  This made it look a tad more weathered and salvaged!

stained!Once it dried we had to hang it in my apartment to get an idea of what it will look like.

photo 3

It’s wrapped and under the tree waiting for Christmas day though Dan is already asking if I will make us one….


When the going gets tough…


This has been a less than perfect week! I have been sick, my kitchen sink is all backed up because of my neighbor yet I’m being blamed for it, it’s been slow at work. And to top it all off its COLD! We are talking the highest temp all week was 35 degrees! When you work in a salvage store with no heat that sucks! To say I feel powerless about my life is an understatement! So in order to gain some control I started a project. Not just any project but a BIG one!

My front counter at work is a beautiful quarter sawn oak bar front that was made in the late 1800s. It is very beat up and kind of embarrassing. I took a single sheet of sandpaper and started to sand the front of it. I don’t know what I was looking to get out of this besides maybe to release a small amount of aggression but next thing I know my coworker Matt has a piece of sandpaper and is next to me working hard. Neither of us are talking about why we are doing this it’s just what we are doing.

A mash up of the befores (why waste a lot of space on ugly photos)

A mash up of the befores (why waste a lot of space on ugly photos)

Before I know it we had the front sanded down from the painted, dirt stained patina to this really pretty white oak.  It was at this point, a little more than 4 hours after that first piece of sandpaper, that we just stood back and admired what we had done.

The Oh shit moment when we realized what we had started

The Oh shit moment when we realized what we had started

But why stop there?! Now the top (and the sides, and the drawers) looked 100x worse! After two days of sanding, and staining we had completely refinished the bar front to a very beautiful (while still maintaining its age) look.

The front! Sanded, stained and sealed

The front! Sanded, stained and sealed

The owner came in today and said "Where did this beauty come from?!)

The owner came in today and said “Where did this beauty come from?!)

I have to admit I was being selfish when I started this impromptu project.  I needed something to do to keep my mind off my shitty week.  And I was being selfish in the out come when I stood back and was admiring our hard work. But then a customer who happened to be in the store both days comes up to me and said “You are an inspiration to home projects. After watching you refinish this beautiful piece of furniture I now have the confidence to go home and do my own projects.”  This is what I needed.

Oh Salvage Tree


Hooray!! It’s Christmas time!! It’s time to snuggle in my JJs with my boys and drink hot cocoa. It’s time to watch Christmas movies and enjoy long lost Christmas tunes. It’s time to decorate my house in festive decorations. Most of all its time for holiday crafts!! About this time every year I decide that I’m going to make everybody in my family their Christmas presents. Each of my 10 family members will get a special, unique, personalized gift that I had made just for them! I will rationalize how if I make ONE gift a night I will have them all finished by the holiday.  This ALWAYS results in stress, massive meltdowns, and half finished gifts.

This year, while I am crafting some presents, I’ve focused my powers on something different.  I am addicted to making Christmas trees! It started as tall skinny cedar triangles for a store display…

Ceder Trees

then in turned into DIY molding tree kits for work…

The Red Molding Tree

THEN it became a ladder tree for my main work display…

A Ladder Tree and Molding Star of course ;)

NEXT it was trees I made from vinyl and glass block…

photo (2)

and Last but certainly not least it was Corrugated Metal Roofing Trees! (Mine didn’t turn out so here’s what they were SUPPOSED to look like)…

Thanks to Pintrest for this photo!

Thanks to Pintrest for this photo!

The boys and I are buying a real tree tomorrow to decorate. However if I’m not careful I am going to end up having a forest of salvaged Christmas trees in my apartment. And at this point I’m not sure I would mind that!