Monday, May 30, 2011

Coffee Table Makeover

"I feel that my home is like a piece of clothing, an accessory, an extension of myself. I want people to walk into my home and know who I am, where I have been, what I feel and what moves me."
- Mariska Hargitay

I love this quote because this is how I feel. I want to design rooms that are comfy, functional yet tells a little bit about me! And of course decorating for little moolah is always my goal!

Seriously, if you are interested in getting a little crafty and decorating for less, check out It is very inspiring and addicting to read!

Luckily this is a project that was quick and turned out pretty good. Look at this plain ol' coffee table we had. Boring right? I wanted something new but didn't want to pay for new furniture. So, I decided to sand all of the edges and decorate the top. Originally I thought to Modpodge but then I went back to the drawing board because I didn't want to make more work for me than necessary. So, I thought why not something I can change out when I wish?

I came up with the idea of fabric! Easy! I LOVE this fabric and it totally goes  with my theme for my living room and kitchen. Golds, reds, and dark browns...

I ordered a glass to be cut to size and put over the material to make a more finished look. I LOVED how it turned out. Don't you? I'm working on redoing the throw pillows for the couch and adding baskets underneath the coffee table this week. I should have pictures very soon! After the baby, I want to sand and paint the end tables solid colors- like a goldish color that  matches my kitchen (which is connected to this room). *Sigh. My mind is always churning with project ideas!

 Pssst....I have another new post below this one with more recent decorating I've done. But brace yourself, it's a LONG one!

Nightmare on Aztec Basin Avenue

Do you ever just feel...well...rotten? Like you must be a crappy person because of the string of bad luck day after day? It's been a long 2 weeks of nothing but disaster after disaster. Welcome aboard the complain train coupled with interior decorating! lol. I have this "whine list" (as Shannon so sweetly calls it) of things to do before the baby comes and redoing the guest room and guest bath are on the list. And because my mom and Rick were coming to stay soon I HAD to get furniture and everything finalized. The clock was ticking. Finding a decent FULL size bedroom set for the tiny room that met our budget was a pain. After weeks of searching for a bedroom set on Craigslist, I FINALLY found something. It wasn't great but for the price, we were willing to go and take a look. The furniture was cheaply made and a HIDEOUS color. But, me being the visionary and frugal gal that I am totally saw a possibility to redo it and save some money. We made a deal and brought it home. This is where it all started: the nightmare on Aztec Basin Avenue.

What should have taken just one long, full day (prime and white coat) turned into an AGONIZING few days! We primed everything and painted one coat of white on the nightstand and decided to call it a night and finish the next morning and by evening have all of the furniture in the bedroom. Easy peasy. Well the next morning we went out to the garage to finish up and discover the furniture was ruined. Something that was supposed to be and neeeeeeded (this is me whining) to be easy turned out to be a nightmare. I've redone a few little things and usually never sand before painting. Well apparently cheap furniture that is not true solid wood HAS to be sanded or the PAINT WILL PEEL!!!!

**** Side note- if you know anything about me, which you probably don't, anything I touch or try to do (especially project-wise) never turns out the way it should. Everything falls apart and there are obstacles ALL along the way. It really is annoying...and discouraging. I don't understand why things can literally NEVER go well for me. I would just appreciate something I try to do to be successful. You can even ask my husband. He really feels sorry for me. I am cursed. I have the absolute worst luck. ****

Me in tears realizing that I have no idea how I'm going to complete this task in time, Shannon suggests putting all of the furniture out by the curb to be picked up by the trash man. I tell him he's CRAZY! Phillipenas' do NOT waste money... or time for that matter. So, instead of wallowing in my misery I decided we should go and paint the spare room. Off we go.

Pictured Below: Shannon posing for one of the happiest moments of his life! NOT! lol. This was the before picture of the room and taken shortly before Shannon knocked over our whole gallon of blue paint on the floor. The tears came again because 1. we just couldn't seem to get a break that day and 2. we were on a budget and didn't want to go and buy another $35 can of paint because we have so many other things to buy to get ready for the baby! The good news was that we are smart and always use plastic to cover everything so our white carpet was saved! Shannon was so mad at himself because he "pulled a Keshia." I'm always the clumsy one but he took the title from me that day. Him being the problem-solver he is suggested that we hurry and roll the paint off of the floor to use for the walls. We had BARELY enough to finish the room. Phew.

Pictured Below: I wanted a bluish gray to go with a blue/white theme. We were pleased with the final product at least even though Shannon absolutely hates painting! haha He said that he figured out if we ever wanted some good contention in our home to set the stage for a fight between us (which is pretty much non-existent) all we need to do is pull out some paint brushes! It was quite a negative painting day to say the least.
 We finished up painting the room and baseboards during the evening so we called it a night.

The next morning I look at the ruined furniture again and begin to sob. Shannon takes a drawer down to a paint store to show them what's happening and ask if there is any hope. We're told we'll have to strip the paint off of everything and sand it all down to restart. He comes home with the chemicals and we begin the VERY long process. It took us a minimum of 6 hours to strip all of the paint. A very prego lady sitting on the concrete doing this all day long was excruciating and made me extremely cranky. It was laborious work and hot hot hot outside. Right when this job was done I was exhausted but relieved to be done with that part of project only to remember that I then had to sand everything. Grrr. Could this project just be over already!!!??? While I finished up sanding, Shannon had done some research on finding a full size mattress for our bed. He found a great deal and took off to go pick it up. By the time he returned it was getting late and we finished out the day with making sure everything was ready to be primed and painted AGAIN in the morning.

Because Shannon had to work the next day and it was the last day I had to finish the furniture, my dear sweet MIL came into town to help me. She brought her sprayer which was supposed to speed things along. While she was putting the sprayer together a piece broke off and because it was the weekend the technical hotline to the sprayer's company was closed. Home Depot and Lowes didn't sell the parts and it would have to be ordered online. It took a couple of hours to find all of this out. Of course. Grrr. The only thing we could do was buy a new sprayer. More money. (Not to mention the money of the paint that was wasted that we used on the furniture and then stripped off and then the new gallons of primer and paint.) Once we got the new sprayer home, it took a couple of hours to figure out how it all worked and why it kept spattering on the furniture! And when the paint spattered ( a million times) you have to hurry with a damp paint brush to smooth it out or it will dry all clumpy. By the time we were able to actually get in the groove to prime it was about 4:00pm! Oh my! This was my LAST day to get a prime and 2 coats of white on all of the furniture! Not gonna happen. We were able to prime everything and put on 1 coat of white paint (with the aid of the flashlight because it was dark out by now). And my sweet, sweet MIL, Collett, came back early the next morning to finish up the last coat since I was unavailable to. I SO owe her and love her for her service. I was able to distress the edges and glaze the vines later that evening. And since I was doing this with the garage door open the wind got the best of the furniture and the headboard, footboard, and drawers all fell over while standing up to dry. This caused scratches and dents! AHHHHHHH. We puttied, lightly sanded, and repainted the nicked areas. I was crying while touching up just wondering if any good luck was ever going to happen for me. We finished them up late that night and I just decided the furniture was not the best, but it would have to do. To be continued...

Pictured Below: The hideous furniture looked like this before we did anything to it.
The finished headboard with the glazed vine. You could barely see it originally but the glaze really made it pop. I liked that part.
Below: The nightstand after it had been primed, painted, stripped, sanded, and ready for prime and paint again!
The finished nightstand:

The gutted dresser ready to be re-primed:
Finalized dresser: would like to buy new hardware. But, that will have to wait!

I'm still working on decor and art...

pictured below: the finished bed. I love the bedding at least! :)  
Continued Story:  The night I finished glazing and distressing we took the furniture upstairs to put the room together. Shannon puts the bed frame together and I keep saying, "Why does this look so big?" He just assures me that it looks so big because the room is so small. We finally bring the nice pillowtop mattress in and put it on the bed. I LOSE IT! Tears start streaming down my face as I silently meet Shannon's concerned eyes and we both know in that moment that this nightmare is not yet over. The silence breaks and I start yelling, "This is a FRICKIN' QUEEN BED!!!!!!" Over and over I say this. I storm out of the room and go find a place to ball up in the floor and cry and wonder why the universe hates me so. The nice, plush, full mattress that we bought of course is too small and now we have just a few hours to find and buy a Queen mattress to replace it before my mom arrives. More money. More headache. AND I will have to go switch out the sheets to fit a Queen now instead of a Full. I so desperately wished to hunt down the person we bought the furniture from and scratch his eyes out since I SPECIFICALLY ASKED HIM OVER AND OVER to make sure that the bedroom set was a full bed NOT a queen. He assured me again and again that it was a FULL. Had I known that it was a Queen we would have never purchased the furniture, never primed it, never painted it, never had it to peel, never stripped and sanded it, never re-primed it, never painted it again, never wasted paint and money on it, never wasted money on the wrong size mattress, never bought a new sprayer, never puttied and fixed the scratches from it falling over, and would have never never never never looked at it!!!! And naturally when we took the sheets back to exchange they no longer had the brand we bought and had to buy a MORE EXPENSIVE BRAND. OF COURSE! The next morning Shannon had to hurry to find a mattress from Craigslist and it was the most terribly uncomfortable over-priced mattress EVER. *Sigh. So now that mom is gone, we are now getting rid of the mattress to get something better. Is this room done yet? Will I ever be able to say, "THE END," at the end of this horror story?

After all of this trouble, hard work, and headache, Shannon and I were sitting beside each other in silence. We're both drained from exhaustion physically (and emotionally for me). Shannon looks at me as serious as could be, trying to be helpful, and says, "I'm so sorry. I don't know why this has all been a disaster. We should just sell it and start over." Oh dear sweet Shannon, good thing you DO have good luck and I did not shoot you for that dumb suggestion! There is NO WAY I'm selling this right away after all the trouble I went through. Then I would feel like it was all for nothing. I will at least wait a year or so!
I redid the bathroom to go with it. I'm working on an art project for the walls today. Let's hope that goes well... Pictures to follow if it all turns out. I do love the bathroom- classy blue and white.

IF you made it this far, bless your soul. Thanks for jumping aboard the complain train and I hope you do not have to ride again soon!