Home Projects | Easy DIY Projects, Before & After Home Makeovers, and Plants & Gardening How Tos
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Before & After: Laura’s Family Room Finds a New Purpose
Laura spent seven years using this room, with its high ceilings and statement fireplace, as a family room. But considering its pass-through and access to the kitchen, she found a new purpose for the space that felt more natural. The process of transforming a living space into a dining space may not have been without challenges, but the results are stunning!
Feb 21, 2013
Before & After: Cheltz & Woo’s Discarded Spool to Dining Table
When Cheltz’s husband, Woo, found this discarded industrial spool, he imagined a new dining room table… for free. Check out how the transformation went: From Cheltz: My husband found this giant wooden spool for free and wanted to make a dining table out of it. I was more than willing to have him try. The spool is 65″ in diameter, which is huge, but it was also over 40″ high (which is way too high for a dining table).
Feb 21, 2013
Before & After: Colorful Kids’ Art in the Dining Room
Interior designer Lauren Liess had clients with a brand-new dining room looking for a stylish and personal upgrade. The family had a bold, cheerful style (and some budding Picassos!), so she came up with the perfect solution: a kids’ art wall!She added some new curtains, a new overhead fixture, and some sconces in the middle of the gallery wall — but the focus is the kids’ art, which adds a lot of color and fun to the room!
Feb 20, 2013
Before & After: Vintage Dollhouse Gets a Colorful Facelift
For Christmas one year, the very stylish Suki gave her daughter a renovated vintage dollhouse. First off, the dollhouse itself is amazing, with what looks like real plaster walls and a brick chimney. Suki tore out some of the old materials, repainted, wallpapered and re-filled the house with tiny furniture and fixtures.The after is so charming, colorful and full of fun details. I would move in tomorrow if I could.  So amazing Suki!
Feb 20, 2013
Before & After: Boring IKEA Billy Bookshelf to Rad Reading Bench
The great thing about Ikea’s Billy bookshelf is that it’s an inexpensive, versatile storage unit for any age — the downside is when you’d like it to be a bookshelf for kids but the height and reach is too much for little arms.Leave it to Lisa Campbell to fix that! She just turned it on its side, so that it not only holds books safely, it doubles as a bench! She added some decorative trim, secured the shelves, and sewed a cushion for the top.
Feb 20, 2013
Before & After: Charlotte’s Colorful Connecticut Living Room
When Charlotte and her family moved from New York to Connecticut, they fell in love with this 100 year-old house and its bay window. With so much white everywhere, it was a blank canvas. Check out how she transformed this living room with color:From Charlotte: We moved to the Connecticut suburbs from NYC into this sweet 100 year-old house. The previous owner had a love affair with all things off-white (carpet, walls, trim, window treatments).
Feb 19, 2013
Before & After: Side Table Gets a Herringbone Top On a Budget
Is this “before” image intriguing, or what? Yes, you can see the top of the old crusty side table, but what’s the point of showing it with all those paint sticks on top? This is truly a DIY project I would never have thought of on my own, and I love it!Truly, the folks over at Thistlewood Farms gave this little table an amazing facelift — with paint sticks. They cut them all down to uniform size, applied some stain, and laid them in a herringbone pattern, and the result?
Feb 19, 2013
Before & After: From Boring Bedroom to Chic Shared Space
Yeah, okay, this bedroom is fine. It’s got some beds, so it’s functional. It’s got walls, you know, because you need those. But it lacked pretty much everything else. Until now…What a transition! Out of nothing, Kelly created this super stylish playroom/studio for her to share with son Aston.
Feb 19, 2013
Make Your Own Before & After
We’ve been showcasing a lot of Before and Afters here this month, and perhaps it’s inspired you to do a few of your own. You may, however, still have doubts, and may find that you ask yourself “can I really do that?” Well, here are some simple beginner DIY’s that you most definitely can do. Time to make your own Before & After.1. Paint a Globe.Take a globe you already have (preferably one of those 3D topographic ones), or acquire one.
Feb 18, 2013
Before & After: Quick and Simple Chair Makeover
A furniture redo doesn’t have to be drastic or especially time-consuming to make a big impact. This lovely chair had a lot of potential, but was a little drab — a few quick fixes made a huge difference!Lisa from All Things Campbell spotted this chair for $20. It had a few minor problems, but she was confident she could fix it up and make it work… and for only twenty bucks, she didn’t have a lot to lose!
Feb 15, 2013
Before & After: Brad & Celestyn’s Reclaimed Wood Wall
From Celestyn: This is a pretty great “up-cycle” done by my super talented husband for the front office of our family business, Repla Prints. He broke down old pallets (FREE!!) and aged them by rubbing them with steel wool that had been soaking in apple cider vinegar before putting them onto the wall. He used the ugly existing desk and made an amazing privacy cover around it. The top is 2×6’s glued and clamped together and sanded for a smooth finish.
Feb 15, 2013
Before & After: A Battered to Bold West Elm Parsons Desk
I just love Cinderella stories involving second-hand furniture. When I saw this blog entry about scoring a $40 Parsons Desk (usually $349) from my dream source, West Elm, and then making it even better–I was excited. A sander and a coat of paint produces a unique piece of accent furniture!Naomi Stein of Design Manifest purchased this West Elm Parsons Desk second-hand with a few scratches and dents and turned it into a hot pink creation all her own.
Feb 14, 2013
Before & After: Aya’s 70s to Serene Guest Bathroom Renovation
This bathroom had not been touched since the 70s, so we thought we’d modernize it a bit. We replaced the old vanity with a double sink IKEA vanity with ample storage. The old faux travertine flooring was removed and new tile was installed. We chose the gray because we wanted a nice, serene color so our guests can feel comfortable while they’re here. We chose the long glass kitchen cabinet doors from IKEA to give the small bathroom an airier feel.
Feb 14, 2013
DIY the $50 IKEA VITTSJÖ: 5 Colorful Hacks
For years IKEA’s EXPEDIT has been a ubiquitous storage solution for homes everywhere. But recently the Swedish furnishing giant’s VITTSJÖ has been showing up more and more on my design radar. It doesn’t scream IKEA, and you’d never guess the system starts as low as under $50. The black metal and glass shelving system has a nice industrial quality on its own, but it seems to really shine when it’s given a bright coat of paint.
Feb 13, 2013
Before & After: Plain Brown Headboard Gets a Playful New Look
Tori was on the hunt for a new bed for her youngest daughter — her older daughter had a cool, unique bed, and she wanted to find something just as awesome for the younger one. So she found this plain headboard on Craigslist and gave it a playful new spin.A little paint, some stenciling, and some clever upholstering gave this headboard a totally new look! Now her daughter has a great colorful new bed, customized by her own mom.Thanks, Tori!
Feb 13, 2013
Before & After: Cristin’s Mod Card Table Makeover
I purchased this 1960’s folding card table and chairs from an estate sale for $20. The table top and seats were covered in avocado vinyl that looked like it hadn’t been cleaned since its last party, 40 years ago. The way the table is constructed, the center of the table top is level with the outer rim, therefore I couldn’t substitute tile or mosaic for the vinyl because it wouldn’t be level. The best solution I found was laminating fabric.
Feb 13, 2013
Before & After: Metal Lyon Stools Get a Fresh Powder Coat
These Lyon steel drafting stools are straight from the architecture school where I was an undergrad over a decade ago. Rusted and layered with spray paint, they were pretty well-worn even when I was in school. Recently, when the department underwent renovations, a friend picked these up for free when they were discarded during construction. We paid him $5 each for the trouble of scavenging them and then started looking into refinishing.
Feb 12, 2013
Before & After: DIY Mongolian Lamb Stool
Fluffy white Mongolian lamb stools pop up like dandelions in tony dressing rooms and decor magazine spreads, but the prices can be a bit overwhelming for the rest of us. But Nadia, the Paris-dwelling blogger behind Preciously Me, came up with a way to get the look on her own with just an IKEA stool and a fluffy pillow.That’s quite the upgrade, no? Nadia started with an IKEA Marius stool (which seems to be available in black, white, and blue on the U.S.
Feb 12, 2013
Before & After: Charlotte’s Craigslist Chairs Get Chevron-ed
I check in with Craig (and his list) on a daily basis, and when I came across a pair of matching wooden arm chairs, I pounced. I talked the seller down to $75 each and brought them home for a facelift. We have a bright red coffee table I had sprayed at an auto detail shop, and I thought these could be a nice complement. A million hours later, all the nail heads and staples were out and I was ready to spray.
Feb 11, 2013
Before & After: An IKEA Bracket Turned Modern Wall Light Sconce
Some DIYers have a real knack for spotting products at IKEA that were just meant to be something else. In the case of this Before & After, a standard shelving unit gets an entirely new purpose and becomes a beautiful light fixture.The Ikea EKBY Shelf Unit contains two simple brackets and a shelf, but when taken apart, suddenly the brackets have all kinds of new uses. You could make a set of new sconces with one shelving unit with this simple hack.
Feb 11, 2013
Before & After: Christina’s Tiny Bedroom to Bright Office Plus Guest Room
The second bedroom of our house is only 8 feet wide and 13 feet long. In spite of its size, we still needed it to function as an office/craft room and a guest room that would sleep 2 people. The major projects here were pulling up the carpet and painting the walls light gray and the ceiling blue. Then we found the perfect sofa bed for small spaces and built a wall shelf behind it since there wasn’t room for end tables. The whole transformation cost about $800.
Feb 8, 2013
Before & After: Noelle’s Painted IKEA LACK Hack
LACK hackFrom Noelle: I decided to tackle my own project with my ages old white Ikea Lack coffee table using Cece Caldwell’s paint in Destin Gulf Green. I figured the worst that could happen is that I’d have to head out to Ikea and buy another Lack coffee table if it was a total bust.
Feb 7, 2013
Before & After: Maysem’s Reupholstered Folding Chairs
 Anything blah can be turned into something wowing, including those ugly upholstered folding chairs. All you need is some nice fabric and spray paint. I used home deco fabric so it will hold up longer. I removed the seat cushions and back rest. The chairs I have were quite old so the screws were worn out and refused to come out, so I had to cut them off. Once the seat cushion and back rest were removed, the fabric was easily removed by pulling out the staples.
Feb 7, 2013
Before & After: Butterscotch Bathroom Tile Gets an Inexpensive Update
After researching relatively simple and inexpensive ways to update my bathroom’s hideous ‘butterscotch’ tiles, my partner and I thought we’d give adhesive linoleum tiles a go because they’re cheap, impactful (in classic black and white squares), relatively simple to install yourself, and super quick (versus not being able to use the facilities for a few days!).
Feb 6, 2013
Before & After: Ellen’s Bad Stain to Fresh & Clean Coffee Table
We have had this coffee table for 12 years. It was the first piece of “grown up” furniture we bought as a couple, so it is quite sentimental to us. It has inlay detail on the top, and we had glass custom made to fit it so that we wouldn’t scratch it (I always referred to the glass as the giant coaster). In recent years, the table was looking increasingly orange (I think because the rest of our decor is slowly leaning towards 50 shades of gray).
Feb 6, 2013
Before & After: Richard’s Toronto Studio Redesign
A couple of years ago, a friend and I decided to invest in a home that we could fix up, and flip in a year or two. I also needed a place to live. I took on the role of general contractor, landlord and designer. I also took over one of the units on the second floor of this 4-plex. We found the perfect house in Roncesvalles, near shops, waterfront, highway and crown jewel, High Park. My unit was in a pretty rough state but I could see the potential.
Feb 5, 2013
Before & After: How To Make Your Own Vintage-Style Striped Sconce
Inspired by the striped light fixtures at Schoolhouse Electric, I wondered if there was a way to dress up my basic sconce with a few fun stripes. I wanted the process to be inexpensive and easy, and I wanted it to create razor sharp paint lines. After a bit of experimentation, I think I got it.I painted 2 coats of green acrylic paint onto a strip of electrical tape and then stretched it around the fixture. For the black stripes, I cut thinner pieces down the length of the tape.
Feb 5, 2013
Before & After: Joellyn’s Grandma Kitsch to Modern Kitchen
I had the great fortune of moving into my grandparents house on our family farm a couple of years ago. It hadn’t been touched much since it was built in 1971, so we saw it as an opportunity to make it exactly what we wanted… starting with the removal of the mostly original carpet. It covered the entire house from kitchen to bathroom!  Since it’s a working farm, our house projects are limited to winter time.
Feb 5, 2013
Before & After: IKEA Lack to Faux Gator Coffee Table
The ubiquitous IKEA LACK coffee table has a lot going for it. It’s just the right size for a small apartment, it has nice, modern lines, and at $19.99 the price is pretty much unbeatable. The only problem is that it can look a bit blah. But Catherine McNelly of domesticitie. figured out how to banish the genericness of the original with the help of a staple gun and some unconventional upholstery fabric.
Feb 4, 2013
Before &amp After: Laura’s Refreshed Nightstand
I found this little piece at the Salvation Army for $7.50. I was looking for a nightstand and knew this would be perfect. The top had water stains where cups and glasses were placed, but other than that it was in good shape. Because I feel that I am drowning in brown furniture sometimes, I decided to paint the drawer fronts white. After sanding and patching the holes from the hardware, I used a high gloss lacquer spray paint on the drawers and stained the rest of the piece.
Feb 4, 2013
8 Great Stenciled, Papered, and Painted File Cabinet Makeovers
It’s one of those things that nobody wants, but everybody needs in their home office. A utilitarian fireproof file cabinet is a must to keep your important documents safe and in order. But you don’t have to settle for the metallic beige eyesores of your parents’ den circa 1970.You can take an old cabinet (or a new-to-you one from a flea market or thrift store) and tailor it to suit your home office with a fresh coat of paint, wallpaper or patterned vinyl.
Jan 28, 2013
Before & After: From Ceiling Space to Playroom
This townhouse only had two bedrooms, and desperately needed a dedicated workspace and playspace. Angie was struck with inspiration when she thought about all the unused space in their 2-story foyer — why not build a loft? Join Us on Pinterest: Apartment Therapy She had her husband and father-in-law build this clever, creative loft and made it into a little nook for working and playing.
Jan 25, 2013
Before & After: From IKEA Dining Table to Chic Desk
IKEA hacks aren’t always for the faint of crafting. But if you’ve got the time and the skill, this hack isn’t just clever – it’s downright stunning. Just get an unfinished Ingo Table for $69 and you’re on your way.The Ingo is a simple pine table, which you’ll find in the kitchen section. It’s small, measuring only 47 1/4 ” long by 29 1/2 ” wide, so it is more than suitable for a larger workspace.
Jan 16, 2013
Before & After: Updating Old IKEA Shelving
Sharon and her husband have had these beech shelves from IKEA for almost 20 years, and had no desire to replace these perfectly functional (if outdated) units while they still have life in them. Luckily Sharon had a vision of how she might update these cabinets — a vision she was able to implement for only $10, thanks to a well-stocked DIY supply cabinet.After a light sanding, Sharon primed the piece with an oil-base primer and then covered it with a latex paint.
Jan 11, 2013
Downton Abbey Cocktail Recipe: Mr. Bates
(Image credit: Apartment Therapy) Last night fans from coast to coast toasted the return of their favorite Downton Abbey characters. We’d like you to actually get a taste of Downton for this week’s 10-Minute Happy Hour. • The Bittersweet Mr. Bates The Kitchn
Jan 8, 2013
Before & After: Anna’s DIY Custom Closet
While Anna’s mid-century house has a fair share of closets, they weren’t exactly outfitted to store much stuff. Faced with the predicament of storing two young boys’ clothes and other belongings, Anna decided to build out the closet herself.A lot of us have faced a similar problem with our own closets — one measly shelf and a long hanging clothes bar do not exactly make the base for an organized closet.
Jan 4, 2013
Before & After: Tube TV Armoire Gets a Widescreen Upgrade
Upgrading an old CRT television to a modern flat screen is a costly endeavor in itself, and it gets even more expensive when you consider some of the hidden costs of upgrading. For instance, if your old tube TV fit snug in a TV cabinet, you’ll need to find a new furniture home for the likely larger new screen. Or, you could take a cue from this no-cost DIY project and transform an old TV armoire into something new.
Jan 3, 2013
Before & After: Refinishing an MCM Dresser
Reeves was privileged enough to have this dresser fall into her lap when her uncle decided it no longer fit his lifestyle. He in turn had been given the dresser by her dad many years before, so Reeves now has a piece of family history in her home.Sadly, this dresser had seen some heavy use over the years, use that left its mark. Reeves sanded the entire dresser, then restained the piece with Rustoleum Dark Walnut.
Dec 12, 2012
Before & After: A Revamped Guest Room
It was a hot pink curtain that started the ball rolling on Jae’s guest room makeover. She kept the furniture, painted the walls and tackled a DIY headboard to give this room a fresh, mature update.Jae tells us: I really wanted to add fuchsia curtains somewhere in our home. I decided on the guest room and that sparked a domino effect of other changes. I like the idea of letting the fabrics and accessories shine with color so I painted the walls white.
Nov 22, 2012
Before & After: “Old & Ugly” High Chair
Would you click on this Craigslist ad: “very old & ugly high chair w/potty chair both for $15”? Yeah, me neither. But Jennifer did (and with enthusiasm I might add) and she set to work cleaning it up and giving it new look.The silver paint makes a huge difference and the vinyl cover will surely be easier to clean than the previous fabric. Jennifer shares the steps she took: I had been looking everywhere for a high chair and when I found it I jumped on it.
Nov 15, 2012
Be-foyer and After: An Entryway Makeover
Ever since my husband and I moved into our 1997 split level, we’ve been slowly working at removing the builder grade finishes to really make it reflect our taste. A couple of weeks ago I finally finished making over the entryway.I smashed the old green ceramic tiles, pulled the stained carpet off the stairs, and painted what felt like miles and miles of honey oak trim. The front door got a coat of yellow paint and the walls got a pale gray.
Nov 15, 2012
Before & After: Unfinished Basement Into “Organized Chaos” Play Space
Julie’s basement needed some work to become a cozier spot for her kids to play and she also wanted it to be a relaxing, attractive spot for the whole family. The new room has big changes: new floor, new ceiling and painted walls as well as furniture and storage.Julie shares: When we moved into our new home, the basement was unfinished. I had dreams of making it into a world-class chaos wrangler, I mean playroom.
Nov 14, 2012
Before & After: DIY Custom Kitchen Island
When Liz and her husband completed their kitchen renovation, they still couldn’t agree on whether or not to add an island. Liza was a fan of the idea, but her husband was concerned about overwhelming their space. After months of debate, and recent entertaining experiences, Liz decided to take the bull by the horns.Once Liz started searching for an island with the proper measurements for her kitchen, she realized that such a specific size might require a custom solution.
Nov 8, 2012
Washington Square Park Living Room and Kids’ Room
A big, open space in a home is a nice thing, but sometimes it can be hard to divide the space into useful areas. That’s exactly the problem Bob and Cortney tackled with their clients on Saturday’s Home By Novogratz, and the best part is that we get to see it in Before and After format!I’ve loved before and after transformations ever since Brady Bunch episode 71 where Marcia gave her friend, Molly, a makeover. This Novogratz design was similar.
Oct 29, 2012
Before & After: Third Time’s a Charm DIY Cabinet
When Terry’s neighbor offered her this piece to redo, she knew she had a challenge on her hands. This sturdy little cabinet had already been altered by a previous owner who removed doors and the bottom to create a mini-desk, adding odd triangular trim pieces for support. Terry knew those pieces had to go if this cabinet was going to get a new lease on life.Terry removed the V-shaped trim and lined the inside of the cabinet with painted bead board.
Oct 29, 2012
10 Most Beautiful Speakers You Won’t Want to Hide
Speakers for your home audio system come in many shapes and sizes, some more decor-friendly than others. Here are 10 speaker designs that make listening a visually inviting experience. Just remember, always make sure to audition speakers before you buy – as we all know, looks can sometimes be deceiving.The Drop and Mini Pod are two whimsical speaker designs from Scandya of Denmark. These little guys help create that retro chic look for your pad.
Oct 22, 2012
Before & After: Restoring a Mid-Century Modern Dresser
When Jamie found this lovely mid-century modern dresser at a Salvation Army store fo only $50, she knew she’d hit the jackpot. Though she didn’t love the yellowing tone of the piece, and the finish was in bad shape (especially on the top), the lines and solid construction made it a great choice for an update.Jamie used Citristrip to remove the old finish, coating the entire dresser then leaving it to sit overnight.
Oct 22, 2012
Before & After: Aged Steel-Look IKEA Cabinet
Tricia from Simplicity in the South loved the vintage industrial look of Restoration Hardware’s steel cabinets, though their prices were not in the budget. She had an idea that with a little paint and some upholstery tacks, she could transform an old IKEA PS cabinet into something a little less schoolyard and a little more industrial chic.
Oct 17, 2012
Before & After: Restoring a Sad Side Table
When Jill found this sad little side table, it was in desperate need of some TLC to help bring it back to life. Jill was able to see past the missing trim, the broken foot and the badly damaged finish on this table to the strong bones and solid wood underneath. With a little hard work and creativity, she was able to transform this table into a showpiece for any room.After taking the table apart, Jill used Citristrip to remove all the old damaged finish.
Oct 17, 2012
Before & After: Foil Finish Chest
Korrie has a passion for furniture, a passion she happily shares with her friends and community of blog readers. Though she usually find pieces to refinish herself, sometimes she benefits from what she herself calls their shared furniture addiction. This chest started out as a friend’s project, one that she passed along to Korrie when she found herself overwhelmed.
Oct 12, 2012
Before & After: The Power of Color
This earthy room was in need of a bit of energy. Interior designer Kirsten Krason came in and saved the space. Follow me after the jump to what she stirred up…Kirsten had a little pattern party with primary colors and brightened up this room in a big way. She kept a good amount of the furniture and added some new pieces along the journey. She splurged on a few big items like the rug, coffee table and window treatments, but then bargain hunted for other great but inexpensive finds.
Oct 11, 2012
Before & After: Kid’s Art Easel
My kids’ art easel is one of those things I could trash instantly when my kids are done using it. It’s covered in doodles and smudged with so much paint that it’s an eye sore. Then when they actually use it, I’m the happiest person on Earth, watching them create their soon-to-be-sold-by-Sotheby’s works of art.
Oct 11, 2012
Before & After: A Colorful Decoupage Game Cabinet
Board games. Where do you keep yours? In our house, they teeter unsteadily in a big pile on the top shelf of our coat closet. Admittedly, this is not really a great place for them, especially when the time comes for the kids to grab one. A nice game cabinet would be ideal. A nice, colorful, unique and all-out fun game cabinet. Like this one.Lori at Bleak 2 Unique certainly wasn’t going for a subtle makeover when she came across this cabinet.
Oct 11, 2012
Before & After: Vintage Tea Cart Transformed
When Heather found this tea cart, it was hiding in the back corner of a garage, cobwebby, dirty, and even a little water damaged. Despite the dilapidated appearance, the structure was solid, and Heather knew just how to reinvigorate this piece of history to make it work in her home.Yup — Heather transformed her tea cart into a bar cart, a lovely marriage of past function and present need in her home.
Oct 5, 2012
Before & After: A Victorian Bathroom Gets a 21st Century Update
Many of us complain about our sub-par, bad taste bathrooms and wish for something updated and modern. But let’s be honest, how many of us have started out with this degree of bad? Follow me after the jump to see how April left the 1800’s behind…Photographer April Cochran-Smith chose to go with a clean, bright, and cheery look for her bathroom, using a white palette and bold, unexpected primaries.
Oct 1, 2012
Before & After: Vintage Settee Makeover
Julie was lucky enough to find this matching pair of settees for her sun room on sale for a mere $10! Though she didn’t love the dark wood and dated fabric, she did love the lines and function of these pieces, which she knew could be updated to work in her room.A couple of coats of white paint later, and the bases are lighter and brighter. Julie selected a new floral fabric and redid the upholstery to give these settees a new lease on life.
Oct 1, 2012
The Power Of Paint: My Lamp Before & After
Though I’ve been doing this a long time, the power of paint to transform things still astonishes me. Take this lamp (or lamps, since it’s part of a pair) for instance. They’ve been moving from room to room as I’ve tried to work their weird green base into my home’s neutral color scheme. But it wasn’t working.
Sep 25, 2012
Before & After: Craigslist Dresser Gets a Makeover
When Melody found this white painted dresser on her local Craigslist, she knew that it could be transformed by a little TLC. Despite the peeling paint and damaged top, the dresser had great lines and was solidly built, making it an excellent candidate for a makeover. Best of all, Melody had a spot and a purpose all picked out for this piece once the transformation was complete.Melody’s first step was stripping and sanding the top to see if she would be able to restain it vs. painting.
Sep 21, 2012
Before & After: Typewriter Table Gets a Cartographic Makeover
Carrie obviously has better yard sale luck than most of us, as she was able to pick up this darling vintage typewriter table at a local sale for only $4 — an astonishing deal by any standard. When she bought it, Carrie already knew this table was getting a cartographic makeover.Carrie’s first step was priming the table, before covering it with white spray paint. After selecting three different maps, she modge-podged them to the three sections of the table top.
Sep 20, 2012
Before & After: A Trashed Curbside Dresser
I am fairly certain that if I drove by this dresser on trash day in my neighborhood, I would have kept on going. Sure it is an interesting size and has nice lines, but the utterly awful painted finish would have had me imagining all types of other things that would undoubtedly be wrong with it, not to mention the hours of labor involved in stripping it.
Sep 19, 2012
Before & After: DIY Compass Rose Table
Janel had an old round table that was just crying out for a makeover. After some careful thought and consideration, she decided to cover the entire table with Rub’n’Buff. At that point the table took on a beautiful burnished gold tone, but Janel wasn’t finished.Janel decided to cover the top of the table with a compass rose, and she decided to create that pattern herself rather than using a stencil!
Sep 17, 2012
How To Top a Table with Zinc Sheet Metal
I came across this tutorial on covering a table with zinc, and I was amazed — I had heard of DIY metal countertops, but I hadn’t considered covering a table! With a few tools that you’ll probably have to pick up at the hardware store — unless you happen to have a soldering iron laying around — the task almost looks… dare I say — simple! The folks over at VanHook & Co. first painted their kitchen set a bright, happy chalk paint red.
Sep 14, 2012
Before & After: Transforming an Artist’s Easel into a Media Stand
Sheila was never a fan of the console that held her TV and other media equipment, especially given its size in relation to the awkward corner that housed the installation. Months ago she found the ideal solution to her dilemma and ordered an artist’s easel to convert into a TV/media stand. With just a little modification, she was able to transform the easel and therefore her living room.
Sep 12, 2012
Before & After: Showroom Quality Handmade 3 Display Desk
DIY desks are becoming a more common sight these days, but desks like rrim’s beautifully executed bi-level birch and pine desk designed for three displays and a water-cooled PC is far from the norm. Hours upon hours of “sanding and staining and clear-coating” resulted in a space efficient and cable-hiding piece worth showcasing… rrim’s Spec’s List: CPU: Intel i7 980x @ 4.
Sep 11, 2012
Quick History: Adirondack Chairs
Now that we’ve reached asphalt-melting temperatures in New York, it’s time to start thinking about breezes skimming across lakes, icy tumblers full of Pimm’s Cup, and the rustic luxury of a quiet hour spent in an Adirondack chair. Which for me, design history nerd, means that it’s also time to start thinking, what ARE Adirondack chairs anyway, and where did they come from?The first Adirondack chair was created by Thomas Lee around 1903.
Sep 10, 2012
Before & After: 1960’s Stereo Cabinet Turned Into 50,000 Song “Porta-Party”
What started off as a worn down circa 1960’s stereo cabinet was converted into an impressive yesterday-meets-tomorrow media PC capable of storing their 50,000 song library.
Sep 6, 2012
Before & After: Salvaging a DIY Dresser Gone Wrong
This dresser is a telling reminder that DIY efforts to improve older furniture are nothing new — though viewing this wallpaper application as an improvement may be a stretch! Despite the poor finish, the waterfall dresser itself is a solid piece, one Sarah knew deserved a makeover.Sarah stripped off the green patterned wallpaper only to discover thick layers of paint underneath.
Sep 4, 2012
How To Get a Bird Out of Your House
Bird in the house! Bird in the house! Oh my God, there’s a bird in the house! OK, first things first: Relax, this happens to everybody. (It does, right? It’s not just me?) I personally ran through about a million scenarios before remembering that I know absolutely nothing about birds. So while the bird continued to fly around in a crazy tizzy as though it were my fault he was trapped in my house, I called a friend who owns like 10 birds.
Aug 29, 2012
Before & After: Restoring a Discarded Dresser
Titia was out running errands when she decided to swing by one of her favorite junk stores. While wending her way through back streets, she came upon a treasure trove of furniture just being discarded, and hopped out to look. Her luck held when she found two pieces she knew she could work with — and when a passerby offered to help her load them into her car!Even before she began stripping off that terrible brown paint, Titia was certain she had found a very special piece.
Aug 29, 2012
Before & After: Rescuing a Dumpster Dive Dresser
It is obvious that Karen must a dedicated DIYer with an artist’s eye if she could find the beauty in this dilapidated dresser. Her father-in-law rescued this dresser from the dumpster knowing that Karen would be able bring this piece back to life.After waiting for inspiration to strike, Karen got to work scraping and stripping and sanding to remove the layers of peeling paint. She then painted the dresser in a slate grey and created a pattern to help celebrate her 19th wedding anniversary.
Aug 24, 2012
Before & After: A Dresser Refresh
Vanessa spotted this dresser in Portland and fell in love with the shape and style, but not the dried-up, cracked surface. So instead of the typical paint over we so ofter see, she went the wood purist way. See what some hard work and dedication will uncover after the jump…She began with a good clean and strip. The natural soy based stripper she began with didn’t do the trick, so she had to call in the big guns to get rid of the old varnish.
Aug 20, 2012
Before & After: Refinishing a Craigslist Console
Michelle had been searching for a media console since she moved into her condo, something to replace the modern IKEA piece that came with her home. When she saw the above piece listed on Craigslist for only $40, she immediately headed out to purchase it. She knew that after a little TLC, it would be the perfect addition to her home.
Aug 20, 2012