When we found this old car jack at Second Use, we weren’t even sure what it was – it just looked COOL! We thought it would make a great lamp base, so when this old utility clamp light came along, it seemed like a perfect match. This project was very simple, with no wiring except for adding a new plug.
This is one of the reasons we started Hammer Like a Girl – helping each other with yucky projects/tasks like this that we put off until the pile threatens to fall over and hurt an unsuspecting passerby.
Before: The pile in my basement. (I’m not proud of it.)
Next time we will take a recycling trip: the plastic bottle tops will go to Aveda, the Styrofoam and peanuts to Ikea, the pvc pipe to RE-Store, and the used batteries to the local Hazardous Waste Site.
We worked out a little system to make this project not so painful. Monica documented the items on a list (for tax deduction purposes) while I went through and bagged stuff up. When we dropped the bags off at Goodwill they gave us a tax receipt which we stapled onto the list – when tax time comes along it will make my life easier when I need to itemize. When it comes to taxes, I need all the help I can get.
This is the first post in a new category where we show little photo collections of some of our projects. The intent is less “tutorial” and more “look at things differently, you never know what can go together to make something new and one of a kind”. Enjoy and please let us know what you think! We love feedback.
Steam table, on its way to the scrap metal yard. Stripping it of its silver paint revealed iron legs and galvanized body/shelf. Removing the screwed-on top revealed a solid copper lining (like a silver lining only better).
Old Douglas Fir lumber from Second Use Building Material.
Old set of hinges, from a gate we removed in our backyard.
Finished side table with hinged plank top for access to storage.
Top lifts for storage.
Steel bar reinforcement.
Original stamp of manufactuer: Stanley Doucette, Los Angeles.
Old exposed hinges.
Doug Fir plank top.
Iron legs and galvanized shelf exposed after stripping of silver paint.
On our road trip this summer we drove through Medora, located in the Badlands of western North Dakota in Theodore Roosevelt National Park. It is a rugged but beautiful area. We stopped and visited the historic site of the Chateau de Mores.
Chateau de Mores in Medora, ND, built in just 3 months in 1883.
The Marquis de Mores was a French nobleman who came to N.D. in the late 1800′s to start a meat-packing business. He and his wife (Medora) were avid hunters and riders and he had this large house built for her. It was simple by their standards, but to the people of the area the house was grand, and they nicknamed it the “Chateau”. The family stayed for about 3 years – the business was not successful, but the house remains as a historical site. You can learn more here. Continue reading →
Have you ever experienced that exhilarating feeling of “What if we bought that building and renovated it and made it into a cool bed & breakfast / coffee shop / gallery and moved back to the Midwest when the girls go to college”?
We experienced that for a brief moment last week. (Ok, I did, the husband didn’t get as excited as I.)
We were on our annual trip to visit family in the midwest and my niece showed us this building for sale ($15,000) in New Rockford, N.D. – the old city hall + fire station + jail. It was an amazing building, complete with a beautiful entry, 2 large garage/fire doors and old jail cells. My heart was a-fluttering, my palms were sweaty and as she ran to get the key I was thinking “how can we manage this, this is AWESOME”.
But what often happens, happened (dreams crushed and hopes dashed) as my niece came back (without the key) and said “the building was just sold”. If I wasn’t mistaken, the husband breathed a huge sigh of relief.
We learned something useful this week about finishes for tropical hardwood decks.
The typical deck finish is made to absorb into wood, but when used on a really hard tropical wood, like Tigerwood, (not to be confused with Tiger Woods), it just sits on top of the surface and eventually looks bad.
We sometimes have to introduce a bit of bright-color happiness into our yards, especially in Seattle, where summer doesn’t really get here until after July 4th. (Sometimes August 4th, but let’s not jinx it.)
For me, orange = happiness. Orange is sun, poppies, citrus, popsicles, and warmth.
I found a great orange from Benjamin Moore called “Aztec Brick” and re-painted our dark brown wooden garden furniture. Much better!
Ugly bun feet. Why??? And why have I put up with them for SO long?
This is a short story about a chair we bought about 20 years ago that has always had some “bun-ugly” feet. Not only are they bun-shaped, but they are fabric-covered bun-shaped. I’ve always meant to replace them with square wooden feet, I even bought some years ago, but they’ve sat in the closet ever since. The chair is dated/worn and in an ideal world, we’d get a new one. But since this isn’t an ideal world, we will make do with a face/foot lift.
I bought the new feet (brown, but I spray painted them black) at a fabric/upholstery store, but you can also buy them online. The ones I got have a little threaded rod that is made to screw into a hole in the bottom of the chair frame. I twisted the existing feet off (with a little persuasion). The remaining hole was larger in diameter than the threaded rod of the new foot, so I cut a dowel into 3 inch lengths and pounded one into each hole. It was a tight fit so I didn’t use glue. Then I drilled the appropriate size hole into the dowel and screwed the new foot into the hole. The most fascinating aspect of this whole project was what fell out of the chair when I turned it up-side-down – a remote control, hair clips, candy wrappers, a very small pink plastic bear, fingernail clippers, a magnetic refrigerator letter Y, a chain, pens & pencils (pictured), and lots of crumbs (not pictured). Yuck!
Treasures From Between Cushions
Pound in Dowel
New feet on an old upholstered chair!
Yay! No more bun feet! It was so easy, why did I wait so long?! p.s. If I have offended anyone who really likes their bun feet, I apologize.