Pendant Light With Pulley

My sister hinted that she wanted me to make her a pendant light using a pulley she found. Actually it wasn’t a hint so much as a demand. My sister isn’t known for her subtlety. She also doesn’t read this blog, so I’m safe. :)

I’ve had the pulley for quite some time and I just now finished in time for her birthday.

diy light, how to make a light fixture, interior design, salvage design, up cycle, green design

The parts:

I found the bracket on Etsy, from a cool shop based in Wisconsin (Gizmo and Hoo Ha) with all sorts of vintage odds and ends. It was listed as a holder for horse bridles and tack, which is special because my sister used to be a big horse-back rider.

The lamp parts (wire, socket, plug, cage) I bought online through Sundial Wire. A big plug for them here (pun intended) – not only do they have very nice lamp parts, they also give very detailed instructions on how to wire a plug and socket.

(Side note: Unfortunately, I lost the photos I took of the individual parts before I put the lamp together. My memory card went kaput after I took the pictures and could not be recognized by the computer or the camera. The good news is the store exchanged the damaged card for a new card, but the bad news is all the photos were lost. Has this ever happened to you?)

Happy Birthday to my sister!

 

 

Quick Update for a Plain Built-in Cupboard

A quick project.

This built-in in our dining room has always bugged me with its flat doors that have no detail. Dining room built-in, 1911 house.

The other doors in our house have a simple raised shaker style border, which aren’t so fun to dust, but look nice.

While we were painting the floors it dawned on me that it would be pretty easy to give the doors a quick facelift with some trim. The husband said “sure, it’s a good idea, but it’s certainly not a priority right?” I said “oh right” and then went out the next day and bought some inexpensive molding. He rolled his eyes.

It was pretty easy – it took about 4 hours. This is how we did it:

  • Purchased Trim. We used hemlock lattice molding (.25″ x 2.25″).
  • Removed doors. We unscrewed the doors from the frames.
  • Carefully measured and cut (with a chop saw) trim to fit door.
  • Notched out trim for hinges with X-Acto knife and chisel/hammer.
  • Applied wood glue to the back of the trim, lined it up on the face of the door, and clamped the heck out of it. Protected trim from clamp marks with wood scraps.
  • Let it dry overnight.
  • Filled in any gaps with Elmers Wood Filler.
  • Sanded and eased edges slightly with hand sander.
  • Primed, painted.
  • Re-installed.

Here’s what it looks like now. I also got some new simpler bin pulls and knobs. The husband’s comment was “oh sure, I guess it looks better – but, would you ever paint the entire built-in a color? It kinda looks like primer right now.”

What do you think? Should I paint it a color?

Dining room built-in after, with added shaker style border.

Dining room built-in (after) with added shaker style border.

More Functional Art

I’ve been working on some more functional art for Matter Gallery in Olympia. It was fun working on the pieces and a little hard to hand them off  – like saying good-bye to your children. Check out their shop either online or in person, Olympia is full of interesting places to visit!

You can see more functional art here.

From Ugly to Lovely, Painting a Floor, Part 2

An embarrassingly long time ago, we wrote about a project we were working on – painting a fir floor. You can read about it here: From Ugly to Lovely, Painting a Floor, Part 1. (We didn’t realize that it would it be over a year and a half later before we wrote Part 2.)

After many delays (removing an existing wood stove, demolishing a hearth, installing new wood stove and hearth, patching various areas of the floor where there were old heat registers) it’s done! Well, the living room is done. The dining room isn’t quite done, but we are so excited by the results, we wanted to share some photos.

As a reminder, this is what the floor looked like before:

Floor_Before1

And here’s what it looks like now:

FloorFinished!

This is how we got there:

Because the floor was painted with lead paint, we didn’t want to sand it, so we used “Krud Kutter”. (Why do companies think it’s a good idea to use weirdly spelled names – what’s wrong with Crud Cutter?) This cleaned the surface and reduced the glossy finish and created a “tooth” for the paint to stick to.

Then we primed the surface using XIM UMA, a special primer/bonder. I’ve used this product in the past and have had great luck. It is designed for difficult to paint non-porous surfaces.

After allowing the primer to dry, we painted the floor. We used 2 coats of Pratt & Lambert’s WithStand floor paint in a special color mix of a dark charcoal gray, allowing 24 hours to dry in between coats.

The final floor:

FloorFinished2

The paint needs to cure for 7 days before placing any furniture or rugs. So meantime, this is what the dining room looks like:

DiningRoom_During

Yikes. I especially like the murderer’s glove in the foreground.

Vintage Railroad Crossing Sign

I’ve always coveted those big old Railroad Crossing signs. I’ve seen them at a couple antique stores here in Seattle, but they’ve always been super expensive. We were in Door County, Wisconsin, by Sturgeon Bay this summer for our annual family trip and I stopped by one of my favorite antique stores there – Richard’s Antiques. I wanted to back a truck up to the store and take everything with me, but settled on 2 sets of railroad signs (and some other things too numerous to mention here).

RailRoadCrossing

RailRoadCrossing_detail

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Contemporary Take on Vintage Photos

This originally appeared as a guest post on Seattle Magazine’s website. We recently were asked a question about working with large format graphics so thought we’d re-post the article here.

Here’s a relatively easy project to display old family photos in a contemporary way. Enlarge, mount on plywood, and frame with flat steel bar.

FramedPoster_final

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DIY: Lamp from Vintage Book Pages

We had some plastic “Zip” letters. We had an old 1961 Wizard of Oz book with cool illustrations. We thought “wouldn’t it be fun to make a lamp that reveals a little secret when you turn it on?”

This is how we made our magic-vintage-book-word-lamp.

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