DIY personalized wedding gift

Over the weekend, we went to a beautiful garden wedding.  Normally, I get the gift registry and purchase something from it for the bride and groom.  But with our schedule this weekend, it was easier for me to make a gift with some supplies I already had.

I started with a 9 x12 gallery wrapped canvas.  Their colors (I did look at the registry online to get an idea of what colors they were using) were a steely blue, chocolate brown, and gray. 
I picked these three colors that seemed closest to what they were using:

Using a clip art program, I found a silhouette of a tree I liked, (you can search by Google or the Graphics Fairy) and then added the couple's name to the bottom.
I flipped the printed design over, tracing the image with a pencil on the wrong side.  Once the edges were traced, I flipped it back over and taped it to the canvas with painter's tape. 

The image was once again traced around the edges, transferring the image to the canvas.
The tree and lettering were all done in the Burnt Umber. 
It still needed something, and I considered painting a little heart in the branches in the tree- instead, I decided to make it look like their initials were carved in the tree trunk. 

Using the Mississippi Mud and the tip of an embosser, I lightly dipped it in the paint and 'wrote' their initials in the trunk with a heart around it. 
I was pretty excited when we got to the wedding and got the programs- on the front was R + R.

You can sign your creation like I did, with your name and their wedding date. 
A personalized family tree keepsake for the newlyweds!


Thoroughly Modern Milly desk makeover

Well, she's finally finished! 

When I started on this desk I mentioned that I don't normally 'name' my projects, but this one just kept coming back to me as Thoroughly Modern Milly. 
It was a 1970's country yellow:

It had been well loved.  I had to clean and sand a bit before priming.

These little flower embellishments are the best part of the desk!

  It had one drawer that was missing it's glider, so the bottom sagged when it was pushed in. 

The yellow grew on me though.  And, when I saw Southern Lovely's gorgeous yellow dresser, I knew what I wanted this little desk to look like:  a modern version of what it already was.
It didn't have a chair- I purchased that later, and I love the lines on it.  

Someone else had already done some artistic embellishments to it (that I didn't think fit it very well....) so I just gave it a coat of the same paint and added a modern gray, black, and white seat to it.  Kinda trendy and modern, but still with a sweet nostalgia to it.  And that's how the name took. 

I love the buttery yellow color- it's Strawflower by Rustoleum.  The only place I could find it was Home Depot. 

The original pulls stayed on it- they were hit with a coat of Krylon's oil rubbed bronze. 

We fixed the saggy drawer (thanks dad!) and now it is ready to go!  This is for sale on Craiglslist- hoping she finds a good home to go to. 

Sharing with:

Rummage sale adventures

First of all, I wanted to say thank you to Rhoda at Southern Hospitality for featuring my nail head coffee table today! wow!  She has a fun linky party on thrifty finds every Monday- it was on hiatus for a bit, but it's up and running again if you've never partied there before.

What a blast...
There is nothing like a parking lot full of other people's stuff! At amazing prices!!!
The St. Joseph's Rummage Sale is an annual event in our city, and I made plans to get there early last Thursday.

My dad was the only brave soul willing to get up at an ungodly hour so we could be first in line. :)  We had a great time talking while we waited, and he was the best assistant!  We make a good team.
The doors opened at 9am - we were there with coffee in hand by 7am. (thanks Ike Box, for my awesome Nasrudin latte!!)

We were able to scope out all the goodies while we were waiting to be let in. The parking lot was full of furniture, plants, toys, electronics....and that was just outside.  The gym was a whole other story!

I scored some cute stuff: my bee line first purchase was this Kooboo style chair. You would faint if I told you how much- but since I plan to sell it, that just feels weird.  It was a deal for sure.

Have you seen these chairs?
Cost plus Kooboo chair $149.99

While I was cleaning up my new purchase, I noticed a sticker on the bottom: Palecek Norman Rockwell collection. I'd never heard of Palecek, so I Googled it, and it is a to-the-trade upscale furniture company!  Wow! Here's a hint on my purchase price: I paid less than a tenth of the Cost Plus version!!  :)

I plan on replacing the seat cover- maybe in a cute French stripe, or maybe I'll do something a little more artistic....

This vintage copper / metal bread box was too cute. 
It will be heading into my Etsy shop soon- I need to clean it up a bit more.

What is this? you may be wondering?

 My dad said it was an oil drip pan for changing the oil on your car.  I thought it would make an adorable oversize metal magnet board!  Some lettering at the top, and some cute magnets....oh boy!

 This vintage secretary is in primo shape. 

Love the knobs, and the construction is solid.  I have already started working on this piece. It's sanded and primed. I hope to have it done by the end of the week.
Don't you just love the vintage wheels on the bottom?

  This will be going up for sale once it is complete as well.

Finally, I saw this silver shell server in the gym, and passed on it.  Later in the day, I went back and got it.  I have some plans for it later on- Christmas to be exact.  :)

So much fun! If you've never been to the St. Joseph's rummage sale, mark your calendar for next year! It is always the third weekend in June.  The best stuff goes early, so if you want the good stuff, come the first day.  Cash in hand is also best if you want to nab several items. (although they do take a check- it slows you down if you have your eye on something a few aisles over....)

How about you? what did you do this weekend?  Any amazing thrifty finds?  come and share them at my Transformations and Treasures on Wednesday!

Have a great Monday!

trash to treasure outdoor table

When life gives you lemons, make lemonade. 
I keep thinking of this phrase with our new outdoor table!

We live in a relatively new subdivision, and in a semi rural area.  With the housing market the way that it is, we have several empty lots still around us.  This translates to one thing:
You know, the people who load up their pickup truck or trailer, drive out here late at night and dump all their stuff in our neighborhood.  (I know, because I've witnessed this a few times.)

My daughter was out riding her bike one afternoon, and came over to tell me that there was a new bit of trash in the field. 
Oh great, I thought.  Sure enough, a metal frame someone had tossed out. I was irritated.
Then, later that evening an idea struck, and I ran back out to retrieve it!

An outdoor industrial style table!

I actually snapped a picture of what it looked like before I pulled it out:

Nice, huh?
We went to work on it- some knotty pine, cut to fit cleanly on top. I stained it, added a coat of sealer for exterior use, and we added some nuts and bolts to secure it to the base. 

And here it is in it's (almost) finished state!
Why 'almost'?  We originally wanted to add industrial wheels to the legs.  As you can see from the dumped picture, it had the plastic ones attached.  I wanted the cool, industrial looking ones.  It seemed like a simple plan that would be a no brainer, but once we got the original wheels off, nothing else fit!  :(
It had a shallow peg that went through the leg, and nothing else has fit that we've found.  We even considered welding it, but neither of us know how to do that, and weren't even sure that would work anyway.
It's still nice looking, just not the complete look I was going for.

We set it up on the back deck.  I plan on using it primarily for a bar / serving area.

White sangria and a baguette with bruschetta anyone? :)

The fields all around our house are filled with purple flowers (weeds really, but still, pretty in masses) and these happy daisies.
The candle holder is a ceramic pot base, filled with sea glass and some shells.  I topped it with a hurricane glass and candle.

The runner is some striped toweling I picked up from the fabric store.
The sides were already hemmed, and after washing it, the edges frayed.  I like the fringe look it added!
The crate is one of several I have- all from Jon's dad.  He was a farmer, and these crates were from his barns.  I used them here for additional outdoor storage.

Here's a bigger view of the space with our new table.
We're still working on this area, but it is really coming together nicely.  We've already enjoyed several warm evenings out here.  The cool thing about this table is that it's low enough to flip around and use as a dining table!  Multi use! 
I mentioned before that we were wanting some privacy for the deck.  We'd planned to get some bamboo to act as a screen, planted in pots.   A couple days ago, my husband was getting ready to go look / purchase some.  Would you believe that he got a phone call from a coworker who just happened to be clearing out some bamboo from his yard??!! 
You can see the beginning stages of it in this photo:

We still have to purchase the pots, but our luck in making this a super thrifty area continues! :)

Finally, I added an area rug to the seating area.  We used some seagrass beach mats- another freebie from my sister in law's moving / get rid of stuff- stuff.
These are hemmed in a turquoise cotton.  I think it looks great, but we'll have to see if this idea sticks.  Literally.
After using these for a couple days, we realized they are slicker than snot.  So, while they look pretty, I'm not sure from a safety standpoint if it will work.  What do you think? Any ideas on this?

Thanks for letting me show you the progress on our deck!  I'd love to hear any ideas you have on adding the wheels to the table.  I'm determined there is a way!!

Here's the cost break down of our table:
metal base: free
lumber for top: $15
stain: $6
nuts and bolts: 25 cents
$21.25 total

Making lemonade out of lemons!
Today I'm out scouting a huge rummage sale in my city- hopefully I'll have some treasures to share with you tomorrow!
You can still link up your outdoor space at my Porch Patio and Deck linky party- it's open through Friday afternoon.

Sharing with:

Porch Patio and Deck linky party

Yes, it's Wednesday, and we're celebrating our weekly linky party a little differently today!
If you're new here, normally I have the Transformations and Treasures party- today it's all about outdoor living. 

My photos that I was going to share today on my trash to treasure table aren't uploading to Blogger.
If you knew how much time I spent staging this last night, you know why I want to cry right now.  And wishing very much I would've finished this post last night when everything was working, instead of getting up early to try and finish it.
*sob, sniff*

Here's the one photo I did get uploaded last night.  Hoping Blogger will be working for me to finish this post maybe tomorrow.

I hope you enjoyed the first day of summer yesterday!
Link up your outdoor spaces and show us how you enjoy the warmer weather!

**P.S. since posting this, I figured out how to upload the photos. It is really a pain, but if you're having issues like me, try this:
In your composer box, there are two tabs in the top right- Edit HTML and Compose mode.  If you click on 'edit HTML', photos can be uploaded in HTML mode.  You can then click back over to 'compose' mode and edit the rest of your post that way, pictures and all.  Hoping Blogger gets this fixed soon!!!! my original post for today will be up tomorrow!  : /  **


wings of wonder

Last week my cousin and her sweet family were visiting.  They are missionaries in Brazil, and have been traveling in the states for a few weeks. 
We got to go on a lovely trip to a butterfly conservatory out in the country.

I'm not going to do a lot of commentary today.  Just enjoy some of the beautiful creatures we were able to see while we were there.

this moth's wingspan was as big as a man's hand!

These were my favorites- Blue Morphos.  Very hard to capture a shot with their blue showing. They don't sit still for long, and when they do land, their wings close up to show the brown dotted exterior.

If you have a butterfly exhibit in your area, I encourage you to visit!  It's fun to see them flying past in such close proximity.
The Wings of Wonder exhibit shown here, is located in Independence, Oregon.
You can click here for more information.

Enjoy your Tuesday. 
Hope to see you here tomorrow at the Patio, Porch and Deck linky party!

nailhead coffee table makeover

You know how bacon makes everything better?
Nail head trim is the same way. It instantly elevates a piece of furniture from ordinary to ooh la la!

I gave a little preview of our new coffee table a couple weeks ago- I finally got the rest of the nail heads I needed to finish the project!

The table started out humbly enough but I was excited about the possibilities. I picked this up from a thrift shop and it looked like this:

It looked very homemade.
I love items like this- imperfections, character.
A fresh coat of white paint instantly transformed it.  Once again, I used Home Depot's Ultra in Spice Delight- the same as our new master bedroom cabinet.
A little bit of embellishment was needed.  But I also wanted something with a touch of masculinity for my husband's sake!
It was pretty fun adding this to the table.  Using my dressmaker's tape for flexibility around the curve, I measured and marked where I wanted the nails- every 3/4".

I found that it was easier to use my needle nose pliers to start- I had less trouble with the nails getting hammered in wonky and wasting them.  Plus, no hammered fingers!  :)

It took about 7 boxes of nails to complete the project. I never could get the rest from the fabric store.  You know who had plenty?  True Value hardware store! 

With the new table I also changed the setting I had on top- this tray was buried in the house wares at Goodwill. I liked the patina, and when I flipped it over to see if it was silver, this is what I saw:

 At check out it was also marked down 50 % off!
Total I paid? $2.50.
Can't beat that!!

Here's a final look at the before and after:

We are loving the new look!