Roadkill Desk

So my dad used to call my boyfriend in high school Roadkill bc he rode a bike and my dad drove an SUV. My dad loved to traumatize me as a child. Anyway, this post has nothing to do with that. Its actual road kill. Not really but kind of. Last week i was cruisin around a neighborhood down town to meet a friend and i slammed on the brakes because i saw this baby on the side of the road:

Free. Solid wood. Adorbs yellow. And freakin dirty. I HAD to have it. And no, i didn’t take the tv.

So i threw it in the back of my car. By myself. BAM.

Yes, i know… i even impressed myself. I really enjoyed meeting up with Kenny later and saying “BTW, i might have a very large piece of furniture in the back of my car.” I dont know why things like this suprise him anymore…

Can i take a moment to just tell you how much I love my car (Scion TC)? Seriously, who else with a two door vroom-vroom car can fit a 7 drawer desk into their car? By themselves? This girl can. Go buy one.

Anyway, back on topic – so where on earth am i going to fit my brand new dirty but cute desk? Especially in our tiny one bedroom already full of furniture apartment. Honestly who cares? I’ll make it fit or give it to a friend to hang on to. Because when you’re in between apartments and a house – you need all the furniture you can get! Especially the free kind. So i brought her home in search of a good spot. Here she is in the hall. Just look at her dirty self…

So after shimmying things around the apartment, i found a good spot for her right around the corner. And then cleaned the sh*! out of her. Eww. Lets just say it was a bad idea to use paper towel… almost went through a whole roll.  And then… voila!

From roadkill to adorable! Yes, she is in need of new knobs, and yes, she has one really wonky odly placed knob… yes shes still dirty and beat up, but nothing some good TLC wont fix. I’ll keep yall updated with what i decide to do. Step one: get her some pretty (anthro?) pulls… or DIY? who knows?!

Have you found any good roadkill lately? Or bad roadkill? Ok, dont share about that last one if you did…

Till next time!

-Rach

Planty McPlanterson

I love roadkill. Not the animal variety. More like the free stuff variety. I was cruisin around with a friend the other day and found a bunch of crap scattered around two awesome pots! Well one awesome small one and one less awesome large one. Enter spray paint. Makes a not so awesome pot into super rad one.

First off, i primed the piece with white. The maroon was so dark it would take 57 layers of blue to hide the dark undercolor.

Speaking of road kill, i was leaving my church the other day and they were getting rid of old plants and updating. Of course i asked them what they were going to do with the old ones.. once i heard they were headed to the trash, i grabbed them! So now i have ANOTHER tree on the porch and a few other little bushes and odds and ends. Even the aloe i got for free from Kenny’s mom. She had a pot that was getting out of control so i stole a few lil dudes and planted them. Its been slow going getting those roots to stick but I’ve started to see some new buds coming in! Whoot!

Aint she pretty? Not bad for a free pot with a free tree in it.

Here is the already super awesome pot. Its ceramic in a funky green with a rounded square top. Love it! I figured i should throw a new mint plant into the mint green pot!

Speaking of plants, i LOVE me some Mountain Laurels. When those trees start blooming its officially the announcement of spring. If your state doesnt have them, its a shame. They smell GLORIOUS. Seriously. In fact, all while they are blooming, i always grab a bloom and throw it in my car for the best air freshener ever. This year, i decided if my car gets to smell amazeballs then our apartment should too. I just grabbed a bowl and threw a few in there. It seriously smells like grape soda… but like 50X better.

And they are just so pretty!

In fact, i love mountain laurels so much, i bought one! Its a mini one and they are slloooooow growers, but check it! I already got some buds! It was pretty funny to come home and walk in with a tree. Pretty sure Kenny didnt know what to say on that one.

Oh how i love the spring!

-Rach

How to recycle an old door – Part 2

Heres the second part of how to build a door desk! Now that it’s done, I am more than excited about it and it looks super great! Also, I now have double the work space before which is perfect! So here is how I finished her up…

The door was super dirty by the time i got back to the project, my brother decided it would be a great place to store all of his power tools. Typical. Let lets just say it took a lot longer than i thought to clean this sucker up! Heres the handy dandy supplies needed:

– paint pan

– large paint roller

– smaller sponge roller (not required but came in handy)

-small paintbrush

– Primer. I used Behr Enamel Undercoater Primer & Sealer.

– Paint: I used a white satin acrylic based paint

-Sand paper blocks

Sanding

Maybe one of the most important steps! Before you ever even think about painting; sand, sand, sand! In the picture above you can see there was some filler that needed to be sanded off as well.  This helps smooth out surfaces as well as prepare the surfaces to really hold on to the primer and paint. I also sanded in between the two layers of paint to smooth out any drips.

Primer

Primer is not always necessary but it helps cut down the number of paint layers and really makes the paint stick. Its great on slick surfaces even laminate and really holds the paint. Its also less expensive than paint so one layer of primer might save you from one or two additional layers of paint!

Primer was necessary for my table because i used nothing but scraps – as you can tell there are at least three different types of wood in very different shades; one white(ish) door, red oak and plywood. The primer (top right) really levels out the colors and makes the paint smooth and even.

Paint

I have a small obsession with thick paint. All of my paintings have dozens of thick layers and textures of paint so when painting furniture i tend to go too thick. This time around i made sure to do thin, even layers and it really came out beautifully. All it needed was one layer of primer and two thin layers of paint. So my final desk is perfect! It has plenty of table space, clean, modern design, room for storage (i have a thing for boxes and baskets… so much better than boring drawers!) and best of all, it was free!

So heres my new office – its definitely a place where I sit down and automatically feel comfortable, stress free and ready to be creative. I love it!

Have you guys been building anything lately? Refurbish one man’s junk to make something rad? Speaking of, i have some oh so lovely goodwill finds to share soon! Woot!

-Rachel

Furniture Stripping!

Thats right, i spent my sunday strippin my Stereo Cabinet. Track my progress so far and what i have left to do here.

Here she is in her craigslist add… doesnt look too bad from far away, but up close she was a wreck. Read about tearing out her insides here. It’s pretty amazing how much of a difference a little stripper and sanding will do to bring a piece back to life! Meet the helpers:

Sidenote: No, that is not sorbet. That orangyish goop is the Strypeeze (not striptease like i thought it said) Other side note: Don’t you love my cute new chucks?!

Ok, before we move on… beware! if you have an unusually pansy-ish stomach, you may not want to read on. Stripping was actually pretty yucky. The varnish came up in a bunch of gunk. Anyway, step one: just start paintin!

I threw on two fairly thick layers because it was unusually tough varnish. I actually attempted to use the refinisher first and epic fail. But lo and behold, the varnish had nothin on this orange goop. 15 minutes later and you’ve got this:

Those beautiful little bubbles and wrinkles are from the varnish getting whooped by the sorbet stripper. booya. Next step, get your scrapper and just go crazy. It should come off pretty easily, if not, either wait an extra 10 minutes or go back over the splotchy areas a second time. Usually if it doesnt come up right away, it’s just because you were too excited to wait the entire 15 minutes (might have happened to me a few times!)

Oh i know, that stuff looks like Dino snot. Still, very exciting how effective this stuff is. Here is the lid to show you a good before and after:

Now I know what you’re thinking… “wow, the before looks so much better!” Well of course it does! We are stripping, not finishing! This is a bit of a process but keep in mind, you are stripping down to the bare wood to then refinish and restain to make her look brand stinkin new. Just wait till this next part… After i stripped all the wood, i went back over it with the furniture finisher and steel wool. It helped take more of the stain off as well.

That part was pretty rough because i was really scrubbin the crud out of it. My sweet boyfriend even helped:

And check out the oh so pretty results:

Who knew there was actually wood under all that crap?!  i went on to sand it to get out some of the deeper scratches. I sanded pretty lightly since it was veneer but enough to smooth it out more. Most likely there will still be some scratches (she was pretty beat up!) But really that just adds a little vintage character, but i also plan on a slightly darker stain which will make the scratches less noticeable. Don’t forget to always, always, always, always, ALWAYS sand with the grain! No circles, no angles… just straight with the grain. Just trust me on this one. Well there ya have it!

Next week: rebuilding the inside and front panels! Super excited and I plan on doing it all for free with scraps! What what!