Friday, May 18, 2012

My Essentials for Building

You might assume that I have a lot of tools. Maybe a garage full of hardware, drills, screwdrivers, and saws? Often people think they can't take on minor construction projects because what they own doesn't match the workshop they think they need. But the truth is; you do not need a multitude of specialized tools to build furniture. It'd be nice of course(!) but it's not a prerequisite.

You are more capable than you think, you only need the guts to give it a try!

I have made most of my pieces with only the bare essentials. I live in a 600 sq. ft. apartment and have no room to store a bunch of tools. I do my work and assembly mostly in the backyard, but sometimes right smack dab in the middle of my living room!

The tools I own are: 

--a power drill/screwdriver
--power sander
--tape measure
--hand stapler
--wood glue {yes, I consider it a tool}
--paint can opener
--hand saw with angle brace

That's it. That is what I make my furniture with. I borrowed an electric saw once to cut off part of the screen door, but all my other sawing is done with muscle! These items take up about one cubic foot of space in my closet.

This is going to sound cheesy, but the most useful thing in your arsenal is going to be your creativity. Sometimes you have to look in the scrap bin for pieces to easily modify, think outside the confines of traditional building methods, and find a way to make it totally you.

Someday soon I am looking forward to gaining access to more tools because I won't deny that they will make the process much easier. In the meantime, I hope that these pieces can inspire you to take on the challenge of a project even if you have the bare minimum!

Monday, May 7, 2012

Birdie Branch Burlap Art

Having a lot of texture in a home is a wonderful thing. It adds more interest to a room and I think it lends to the homey, comfortable feel that is always the end goal for my rooms.

One of my favorite materials, for it's wonderful texture, is burlap. I used it on this project and had quite a bit left over. I wanted to put it to use in other parts of the apartment and so I decided to make some framed burlap art, a way to add texture to... the walls!

I found an old wood 8x10 frame and covered it with watered down white paint to give it a white-washed look. Then I cut and measured my burlap to fit the frame I painted my base picture of the olive branch directly onto this piece of burlap using white acrylic paint. Next, I painted a few smaller pieces with the birdie and the heart. Layering separate pieces allowed me to play with the arrangement and added extra dimension. There's no need to even glue it in place because the burlap sticks well to itself.


This project is so simple! Even if you are artistically challenged and run away from anything that involves freehand, you can make it look good by stamping a picture or saying onto the material. Or you may purchase this one of course!

You can see more pictures of mine sprucing up my TV stand here.

~ $10.00 ~

Saturday, May 5, 2012

Going Social

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Mahalo for your support,

- Ames