Tag Archives: carpentry

inexpensive DIY wood slat walls

Happy Thanksgiving week everyone!  I can say, that my holiday spirit is still fully intact.  I’m not so sure about our newspaper delivery person, though, as my poor poinsettia on the porch is the perfect landing spot for the paper.  :/

Joel says I’m going to kill it anyway so maybe they’re just doing me a favor.  🙂  He thinks he’s funny.

But, before we move ahead to full on Christmas around here I wanted to give you the low down on the DIY wood slat walls we installed in the master bedroom.

wood slat walls

Some people might think we’re crazy, adding even more wood to this house.  We have wood floors throughout, and wood slat walls that are original to the house on maybe 1/3 of the walls.  But we just love the look and wanted to add a little architectural detail to our otherwise basic master bedroom.

We wanted the look to add a bit of a cottage feel, but we also wanted it to be subtle and not overpowering to the room.

wood slat walls

How’s that for a beauty shot?  😉

This room is not very large and has a funny angled wall that encloses the master closet and bathroom. We put the wall there, so I’m definitely not complaining about it.  But I think adding the wood slat walls (and the lighted picture nooks, which we’ll talk about soon) might help draw attention away from the room itself and toward some of the more fun details.

Based on the new wall placement between the closet and the bedroom the windows on that wall weren’t centered so I just hung four white curtain panels along the whole wall to camouflage the off-center windows.

master bedroom bed

Knowing that wall would end up covered anyway, we went ahead and drywalled that wall and the other exterior wall facing the back of the house, so we were left with 3 walls to slat with wood.

So … I built a wall or two.

wood slat walls

I’ve talked a little bit about building here, and I kind of think it makes everyone’s eyes glaze over so no details here.  But shout if you want to.  I went ahead and added the extra studs in between the regular studs purely for the wood slat walls, we didn’t want the plywood to warp over time so we felt the studs closer together were a good idea.  Actually, that was all Joel.  Well … idea conception = Joel, idea implementation = Karah.  And so it goes.  🙂

For the wood slats I turned to a plywood product I know and love called Purebond.  I used 3/4″ Purebond Plywood to make the closet in the guest bedroom and the guest bedroom bed frame.  I used 1/4″ think plywood for the wood slat walls and since they are so light weight they were really easy to work with.  I had the guys at The Home Depot rip each 4 x 8 foot sheet of Purebond down to 12″ strips (each 8 feet long) and then once home Joel and I ran them through our table saw and cut them just under 4″ wide.

What I really love about Purebond is that it is made in the USA and is 100% formaldehyde-free.  It’s a hardwood plywood so it makes for a great economical choice when you want the look of wood, but need to watch the wallet.


With the wood slat walls, I knew I wanted to paint them white so “the look” of wood was really what I was going for.  And I’ll say it again, I love how easy the 1/4″ thickness was to work with.  After the cutting I literally did this entire project along.

I started with a light sanding of the edges of each strip of wood, just to remove any splinters.

wood slat walls

Then I just started at the floor and since the weird angled wall was going to be the trickiest part I just decided to start there by lining up the ends of the first two pieces.

wood slat walls

Turned out that it was easier to line up the corner with a thin shim behind one of the wall studs so I just used an extra piece of the 1/4″ plywood and nailed the slats right to the shim and into the stud at that corner.

wood slat walls

The second row is really the most important because it will be the first one seen above the baseboard so I leveled that row of slats before nailing them in … the Ryobi Airstrike worked great for this project, I bet their new stapler would work great, too. (affiliate links)

wood slat walls

That gap between the slats ends up hidden by our chunky baseboard, and from here it was really just a matter of cutting to size and layering the slats, nailing them directly into the studs.  The two walls that enclose the closet are less than 8 feet long so each row is a full slat.  And as for spacing, I started by using a penny to space the rows apart, and then I started forgetting about the penny and just eyeballing the tiniest of gaps between the slats.  We like how it has a bit of an inconsistent feel to the spacing, not too perfect.  Or perfect at all really.  🙂

wood slat wallsOn the other, longer wall, I just staggered where the slats meet up in each row so it didn’t look too perfect.  This turned out to be a great little late-night-let’s-get-caught-up-on-some-of-my-favorite-shows-project.

wood slat walls

I also just used scraps of the plywood for the first row, because you want to add the 1/4″ thickness to the wall so the baseboard has a flat surface to adhere to, but it doesn’t have to look nice since it’s just going to get covered up.

And using those scraps kept this project to 7 full sheets of the Purebond, so about $210 for the three walls of the room.  That’s cheaper than wallpaper and so much easier than stenciling.  And I didn’t cry about not having to tape, mud and sand those three walls, that is for sure.  🙂

I did put three coats of primer on them just to try to get as crisp white a finish as possible.  And by “I” I totally mean “my cousin and I”, because you know that room and board is not free around here.  🙂  While she was visiting I used her for free labor had her go over the walls with a roller while I went along each seam with a brush.

wood slat walls

And like most projects, it really takes the finishing touches like the trim and some caulk to make the look really come together.  I used a shoe molding called quarter round where the wood slat walls met at a corner with a drywalled wall used a piece of lattice along the weird corner where the two wood slat walls met. After after we refinished the wood floors we finished it all off by installing molding and baseboards like we’ve done throughout the house. (Details can be found here and here.)

wood slat walls

I like that it adds a bit of texture and dimension but is really subtle, it almost catches you by surprise once you notice it.

wood slat walls

There’s still a lot to do in here in terms of decorating, I’m toying with the idea of a gallery wall of mostly black and white pictures on the long wall.  We’ll see how that turns out, but considering where we started in here I still let out a bit of a sigh of relief when I come around the corner to see how the room looks now … and not how it looked then.

master bedroom before

It’s like a Christmas, or Thanksgiving,  miracle.  🙂

simple MDF craftsman style trim – an update

Hey hey!  Hope you’re having a great week.  I’m plugging away at sanding, priming and painting in the master bedroom and if you follow along on Instagram you know that we’ve added even more wood slat walls to this house.

wood slat walls

We’re also going to have some niches for a few favorite photos on that wall between the bedroom and the master closet.  Let’s just hope I measured them correctly.  🙂

This time around with the wood slat walls we went a totally new route and used a 1/4″ plywood product knowing that we wanted to paint them and really just needed the “look” of real wood slats.

Which has had me thinking long and hard about how we make some of our decisions around here when it comes to choosing a less expensive option when working on a DIY. Hey, a girl and her paint brush have many hours to contemplate a whole array of things.  Like how many times in a day is too many times to wish I had a bag of gummy anything to snack on?  Or what time exactly is officially too early to take a bath each day?

make a spa like diy wood vanity

But, back to the MDF trim and making decisions to save money that hopefully don’t end up sacrificing style.

Update:  I first posted about our decision to use MDF here, and give more detail on the cutting and hanging process.  And, because I’ve been getting the question, MDF stands for medium-density fiberboard which means that it is not real wood but more little pieces of fiber compressed together tightly to form a board.

Take the wood vanity for example, I used basic knotty pine because it is one of the most economical wood options, and I like the look.  I don’t ever want anyone to come into our house and be able to point out when something was used specifically for its cost saving qualities.  So sometimes I use a less expensive option because it really is what I personally prefer.

Other than those times, I think the objective we have when we choose a less expensive option is to stick with something that can very closely mimic the look of the “real thing” and save us a bunch of money.

I haven’t finished up the new wood slat walls in the bedroom so we’ll have to talk through that another time, but we have used a plethora of MDF to mimic the look of real wood trim in every room we’ve updated so far and it’s something that I get asked a good deal about.

making curtains for the guest bedroom

I’ve actually started to use a mix of MDF and real wood in spots (real wood baseboards in the bathroom just because of their likelihood to come in contact with water, but I stuck with MDF for the crown) and I’m happy to say you really can’t tell the difference.

rolling door hardware in the master bathroom

We’ve kind of decided to use real wood for doorway trim since they tend to get more banged up with all of our constant furniture re-positioning.

I was going to say rearranging, but I don’t know anyone who considers a dresser in the dining room a furniture arrangement.  🙂  And I say “kind of” because we are the type to come up with a reason to break our own rules once we decide on said rule.

And I learned a little trick that has made all the difference in how I look at the MDF.  There was a moment where I was going to stop using it altogether because I just felt it wasn’t looking enough like the real deal.

But!  You know after you install trim and you run caulk along it where the trim meets the wall?  When you’re using MDF just be sure to cover the entire cut edge of the MDF with caulk.

guest bedroom

After we cut our trim to size I use 100 grit sandpaper on each cut edge but I really hate sanding MDF, the sawdust is so tiny and I break out in a sneezing fit every time.  So I probably should sand each edge again with 150 and maybe even 220 grit to get them super smooth.  But my cheater trick with the caulk prevents me from actually having to do that.

This might not be something that bothers you, but when you get up close and personal with our trim I don’t want you to see that it’s MDF, that would defeat the purpose of using it.  There are a few pieces that we hung at the very beginning in the living room that I still need to go back and just run a bead of caulk with my finger along the edge.  Funny enough, it actually makes the baseboards easier to clean.  If the cut edge isn’t totally smooth when you run a wet rag over them the dust and dog hair just get caught in the little divots.  With the edges caulked you can run a rag over them and it’s just like the smooth edge of a piece of wood.

fall decorating ideas

After figuring out that little trick the only downside I see about using MDF to create a simple craftsman style trim is that it only comes in 8 foot lengths so we have to use more than one piece on most walls.  A little more caulk and some touch up paint camouflage the seams pretty well, enough so that I continue to use the stuff for our trim.  🙂

What about you, other than cost do you have any tricks to why you choose a less expensive option than that special something you really want?

how to DIY a shower pan {preparation and planning}

how to diy a shower pan - instructional tutorial covering all of the steps from start to finish

Hey guys!  I took a little blog vacation last week that started off with my 38th birthday, a Red Sox baseball game (and win!) and meeting Nene Leakes.  And ended with me declaring victory over the learning curve of how to DIY a shower pan.  Thank goodness.

how to DIY a shower pan preslope

Other title contender’s for this post include “third time’s a charm” and “let’s talk about sand mix, baby”.

As in … let’s talk about sand mix, baby, let’s talk about you and me, let’s talk about all the good things and the bad things that may be … let’s talk abouuuuuut sand mix.

If we could start with the bad things …

how to DIY a shower pan

You know when you think you know how to do something. Then you research it. Then you think you “really” know how to do something. Then you keep researching just to be sure.   And it turns out there are a lot of “right” ways to do something. And you’re more confused than when you started.

Yeah, that’s the story of me and my search for how to DIY a shower pan. I started out really confident, because I’ve actually DIYed a shower pan before that we then tiled. But I always wished I’d put more of a slope toward the drain in it so I started by researching the amount of slope to add.

1/4″ for every foot is the standard amount of slope to add to a shower pan. Easy.

But then I read about preslope. And the use of a liner, which some say is “sooo 1970s”. And the use of these corner clips, so you don’t have to cut the liner, which my local HD doesn’t carry in stock, but the do carry this shower liner adhesive. (aff links)

So, for anyone getting ready to tackle this project I would say do a fair share of research and devise a plan that you feel comfortable with. And here’s what I did, which is just an amalgamation (because I’ve been dying to use that word in a blog post) of a lot of different techniques I read about, watched videos for and got advice about from a plumber with 20+ years of experience.  Who I reached out to only after I had messed it up twice. Ugh.

how to DIY a shower pan

Step 1: Preparation

Before you’re ready for any work on the shower pan liner be sure you have your shower area prepped and ready.

1. Make sure you have enough support under your house for all of the added weight of the mortar and tile.  A good gauge is if you’re floor joists are only 2 x 6 or 2 x 8 you should beef them up with added support.

2. Make sure you have a solid 3/4″ subfloor.  We have 3/4″ oak flooring but there were a few gaps that I didn’t like so I added a layer of 1/4″ cement board right on top of it (after I built the bench).  More on that when we talk about tiling because we actually laid 1/4″ cement board over the entire bathroom floor, set with a little thinset and screwed in with cement board screws.

how to DIY a shower pan

3. Create a “curb” around the surround of your shower.  You will most likely want the curb to be 4 1/2″ high (3 pressure treated 2 x 4s stacked on top of each other) but for this first step I just attached one 2 x 4 directly to our subfloor with my framing nailer.  (I have this one and LOVE it.)  If your shower is larger you might need to add the full curb here as well as add boards in between your wall studs so you have the proper surround to hold in the shower pan mortar up to the appropriate 1/4″ per 1′ slope you will be creating.  And I will want to come check out your extra-large shower for sure!

4. If you’re adding a bench in your shower now is the time to frame it.  I just used pressure treated 2 x 6s and 2 x 4s we had left over from wall framing projects and created two boxes.

framing a shower bench

(You can see I didn’t necessarily do these steps in any particular order.  You can see the gaps in between the floor boards in that picture above since we hadn’t added the cement board yet.)

Our bench is not large, and was really Joel’s idea as a nice feature suggesting it’d be a nice stoop for my leg shaving.  Seems like someone might want me to shave those legs more frequently.  TMI? #BlondeHairIsAwesome  It’s not often we get so exhausted in the shower we need a sit break, but it really does seem like a nice, upgraded feature.  After I snapped this next shot I did add another 2 x 4 where that red arrow is.

framing a shower bench

5. Drill your drain hole.  You will need an adjustable drain and drill your hole large enough so the flange sits flat on your subfloor, about 4″ in diameter.  Add a little caulk under the flange and attach only that one part of the drain to your subfloor.

adjustable shower drain

adjustable shower drain

Tip!!!  If you attach your drain pipe here be sure to plug up the drain with a sponge or something so nothing falls in there.

6. Now clean your area thoroughly.  Sweep, shop vac, hand mop, toothbrush … whatever you got.

Now you’re ready for a little preslope.  

We are going to thoroughly discuss the whats and what nots when it comes to the preslope and quite frankly it’s just too much information to tack on right here. So that’s coming to you soon.  Hold onto your hats!

Update:  The shower pan series is complete.  Here are the other posts that might come in handy if you’re making your own shower pan.

And to see what direction we’re headed with the tile just click here.

And please tell me you’ve messed up a project, the same project, more than once.  It feels crappy doesn’t it. But to overcome it.  It’s kind of the best, no?!?!

attic access door … another year, another random birthday gift

Well, we finally have a door for our front attic access.  And I may have sent this picture to Joel with the caption “happy birthday”.

attic access door

Sunday was the actual birthday and since he had to work I decided to get a few things done around here.  And over the last few weeks Joel may have been leaving me some not so subtle hints that getting a door on the attic access was at the top of his priority list.

“Can you feel how hot it is up here?”  While we were up on ladders finishing up the molding.

“It’s amazing how much cooler it is in the back of the house.”  At random, with increasing frequency.

“Do you have everything you need to install the attic access door?”  When he noticed I had actually made what could be a door and had purchased some hinges.

“Will you just install that door already?”  The night before his birthday.

So, who am I to not use that as the perfect excuse to officially declare this little necessity a birthday gift?!?!  I’m a giver, what can I say.

But seriously, I’m stoked we’re not still looking like this up there.

roof project progress

We wanted to keep an attic access in the front of the house for easy access in case we needed to update any electric or pretty much do anything up there like add more insulation or keep an eye on the underside of the roof.  We do have a larger attic access in the ceiling of our kitchen but the new HVAC runs through the attic and pretty much inhibits any kind of maneuvering from the back of the house up to the front.

So after too many months with an open opening we finally have a door.


And just to prove his point, we’ll consider this sentence another birthday gift, I could immediately feel the difference in temperature in that vaulted part of the ceiling once the door was installed.  I’ll be curious how much of an impact it will have on our electric bill.  It hasn’t been ridiculously high so far, or you know I would have done this months ago, but it will still be nice to see a little bit of a difference.  We will see.

As for the how-to, making an attic access door like this is really a simple DIY anyone can do.  The whole hanging part is a bit of a different story, but we’ll get to that in a bit.

While we were finishing up the trim I also took some trim boards and framed out the square opening.

attic access door opening

To keep the opening as big as possible, because it’s already a little snug, I just lined the trim right up with the opening and didn’t really worry too much about what things look like behind the door since the attic is an unfinished space anyway.  Going with the same theory, that it didn’t matter if things looked a little wonky, I used a 4″ wide board along the top instead of carrying the 6″ size through.  If you would like to venture into my attic to critique it I will make you stay up there a minimum of one hour.  And I will not offer you any water.  😉

Once the trim was hung I measured the height and width, I wanted the door to sit somewhere on the trim, without totally overlapping it, so some white would show all of the way around.  Knowing I was going to use 1 x 4s that I had on hand left over from making the shutters, I just figured out a measurement that was divisible by 3 1/2.  (Because 1 x 4s are actually only 3 1/2″ wide.)  The door itself measures 21″ wide (6 x 3 1/2 = 21) and 19″ tall.  After figuring out that the measurement worked best to have the 1 x 4s run vertically I could just measure the height and take about 3″ off to leave a little trim reveal.

attic access door stain

Using my miter saw I cut six 1 x 4s 19″ long and two 16″ long.  Those 2 hold the whole door together.  They needed to be long enough to be able to screw into each of the 1 x4s and short enough to fit inside the attic access opening.

Before any assembly I sanded, stained and put a coat of polyurethane on each board.  So far no out-of-pocket costs for this door since the stain and poly is the left over from when we refinished the hardwood floors.  I did stain all sides of each board but I only poly’ed one side and all of the edges, just be sure to attach everything from the side you didn’t poly if you do that, too.

attic access door assemblyattic access door assembly

Use 1 1/8″ screws to attach everything, screw through the 16″ board into each of the 19″ long boards with at least one screw per board, some may need two if the board doesn’t want to sit flat with just one.

Now for the hanging, this really would be easiest as a two person job, but not only did I find a way to do it myself, but I also took a few “reenactment” photos for your benefit.  If it was your birthday I would say “happy birthday” for this little gift.  🙂

First I just held up the door to the opening to eyeball where it would work to attach the hinges to the door. Just to clarify, no tape measure was used from here on out.  And the hinges were the only expense with this project.  I love when a necessary update is nearly free.

attic access door assembly

And note from this picture that the door actually ends up getting hung a little lower so the quarter round along the molding wouldn’t prevent the door from opening up completely.  Along those lines, the only way the door could open up completely was to install the hinges on the top so the door would open up to the ceiling.  The slope of the vaulted ceiling would prevent the door from opening completely if we wanted it to open to either side.

Luckily, adding the hinges to the top of the door also keeps them hidden from view so it seemed like the best approach all the way around.

And just to keep things real, I had to move where I had first attached the hinges because the 1 x 4 trim board running across the top doesn’t hang low enough to screw the hinges into.

attic access door assembly

From here I precariously held the door up with my head as I eyeballed the right spot for the door to hang and screwed in one screw per hinge into the trim.

attic access door hanging

Just adding one screw per hinge here is enough to hang the door and double-check everything is where you want it.  If you do need to adjust anything you don’t have as many screws to redo … or as many holes to patch.

attic access door hanging

The left side was harder to screw in since I had to reach across my body and try to get the screw in straight, while keeping the hinge in the exact spot I wanted it.  I held tight to the attic opening for extra stability.

attic access door hanging

Like I said, this would have been easier with an extra set of hands, but that just adds to the “value” of this birthday gift, right?!?!

attic access door

And it works to my advantage that this vaulted ceiling part of the house is only about 6′ wide.  There really is no good reason for anyone to be standing directly in front of the new attic access door to assess whether it is perfectly centered.  And it’s nearly impossible to get any sort of photograph from any other angle, so we’ll just call it perfect.  🙂

I am still pretty infatuated with the rich Modern Walnut stain color that we’ve infused into the guest bedroom, living room and dining room so far.  It’s such a nice contrast to all of the light wall colors and bright white trim we’re using throughout.  And I’m happy to have this one little item ticked off the to-do list.

attic access door

We’ve considered adding a dock cleat, like we used as “knobs” for the diy wood closet doors in the guest bedroom, but it’s not really necessary and right now I like it plain … but that may show up at some point down the road.

So, do you give completed diy projects at gifts?  If you prefer a more traditional gift, check out the “you are the” word art I made for last year’s birthday.  And we also bought a pair of these and when the order was complete a “happy birthday” was declared.  🙂

And have you entered the giveaway yet?  There are FIVE $100 gift cards up for grabs.  And there’s still time to vote for our porch in Better Homes and Gardens Ultimate Summer Bash challenge right here.  Thanks!!

diy wooden mailbox {and why we needed a new mailbox ASAP}

I would love to be able to say “So, I tackled the next project on our to-do list and I’m here today to tell you about it.  Our brand new DIY wooden mailbox.”

But the truth is, that’s not at all how things happen around here.  🙂

Seemingly unrelated question – Do you travel to have girls’ weekends with your friends?

Not to alienate any male readers.  Next week we’ll talk about guys’ trips.*

*no we won’t Continue reading diy wooden mailbox {and why we needed a new mailbox ASAP}

some wood bed frame making tips for you

Here’s a handy list of some things that could, if you’re not perfect, possibly, maybe go wrong while making a wood bed frame.  I mean, if it were someone else making the bed.  In spite of it all, here is how my bedframe turned out here.

Let’s just agree that these problems didn’t happen to me.

And that these are pictures I found online from someone else’s bed making attempt.

I know what you’re going to think, “it’s crazy that the random person’s yard and room and bed frame looks just like mine” … I thought the exact same thing.  🙂 Continue reading some wood bed frame making tips for you

how to make a wood bed frame

Holy heck … we made a wood bed frame!

diy wood frame bed

I didn’t have the heart to make those girls get up even though they wouldn’t look at the camera. #oldladydogslikemycompany #iheartthemtoo

I am so excited about this project!  Every time I look at it it’s like it says to me “See, you will live like regular people here soon, you will get there, I promise”. Because she knows that a home is so much more than just a shell.  And then I want to hug her and lay with her … which sounds weird … but she is a bed.

And then I just look at Joel and cock my head and smirk all arrogantly silently saying “Ha, no mattress on the floor up in this house!”.

And then I go into our master bedroom and see our mattress on the floor.

And I had never made a bed before.  Heck, I’ve never really made any kind of furniture. And this was another one of those ideas that percolated in my brain for a while, all by my lonesome … and we all know how I get with those kinds of solitary projects.

diy wood frame bed

And then a funny thing happened, I saw a random post on some social media outlet about a wood shim bed that Ana White had just posted plans for and with one quick glance at her plans I knew I could make this bed.

I just knew it.

Now, our bed is not a wood shim bed and does not follow Ana’s plans, but I did incorporate some of her design into our bed.  And somehow just reading through her plans gave me the confidence to make this bed happen.  So, high fives Ana!!  You were my cheerleader and you didn’t even know it.  🙂

So, let’s get started, because I know you, too, can make your very own wood bed frame if you want to!

It really helped me to break it down so I could make sure I had my mind wrapped around exactly what I was going to do.

Bed Frame Design Concept

Legs – We had rescued a Dade County Pine post from our neighbor and I knew I wanted to use that for the legs.  You could use a 4″ x 4″ post or maybe find a post at a salvage yard or Habitat Restore.

Headboard and Footboard – I had a leftover piece of Purebond plywood from our closet shelves that would work.  Our closet shelves are 24 inches wide so we just ripped one leftover piece in half to create 2 12″ wide pieces.  One for the footboard and one to act as a support between the two front legs of the frame.  I knew I wanted to create a separate headboard that I could switch out if I wanted to so I did not incorporate an actual headboard into the design, just that piece for stability.

Side rails – I had enough leftover pieces of Purebond plywood that I knew I could piece them together for the side rails.  And I had leftover 3/4″ thick rope from a totally different project that I thought would be a fun detail in between the pieces together plywood.

Supplies if you’re Purchasing all Materials

wood bed frame supplies

  • take the measurements of your mattress and have pieces of Purebond plywood cut 12 inches high and the length of your mattress measurements
  • 8 1″ x 2″ trim pieces 8 feet long and by 2 of the same but 6 feet long*
  • 2 2″ x 4″ 8 feet long and 3 that are 10 feet long – these will be for the frame supports
  • 4″ x 4″ post for each leg, our legs are 25 inches long
  • 1 1″ x 6″ white wood board the same length as the width of your mattress plus the leg posts (to go across the top of the footboard and posts)
  • 2 and 3 inch screws
  • If you’re making a platform bed, without a box spring, you will also need a sheet of inexpensive plywood cut to size to serve as the mattress platform.
*Our mattress is a full, so any measurements I give are specific to our project, but just use the size of your mattress as your guide.

Now, I had already stained my plywood from the closet project and waited until the very end to stain the added 1″ x 2″ trim pieces.  You could stain all your pieces first, or once the side rails are assembled, or after … it doesn’t really matter.


  • screwdriver
  • miter saw
  • Kreg Jig Jr (or you could use L brackets to attach your rails to the legs)
  • tape measure
  • wood glue
  • hammer and finish nails or a finish nail gun

Based on the measurement of your mattress make all of your cuts

wood bed frame cuts

  • 4 legs of equal length (ours are 25″ and I used the first cut leg as a template to make sure each leg was exactly the same height)
  • 8 1 x 2’s the length of your side rails (ours are 76″)
  • 2 1 x 2’s the length of your footboard (ours is 53″)
  • 2 pieces of plywood 12″ high and the length of your footboard (ours is 53″)
  • 2 pieces of plywood 12″ high and the length of your side rails (ours are 76″, and I pieced together 3 scrap pieces on each side)
  • 2 2 x 4’s the length of your side rails plus 4 inches
  • 6 2 x 4’s the length of your footboard exactly

wood bed frame cut legs

Wood Bed Frame Section Assembly

The headboard support is the easiest – just drill your pocket holes with your Kreg Jig Jr into each end of the piece of plywood and attach with screws to two of the leg posts.

diy wood frame bed headboard assembly

I made the posts and plywood flush at the top and back, so the mattress wouldn’t sit out too far from the wall.  Here is what she looks like from the front, imagine our yard is actually the wall in the bedroom.

diy wood frame bed headboard assembly

Footboard – attach the 1×2 strips along the top and bottom edge of what will be seen at the end of the bed with wood glue and finish nails.

diy wood frame bed footboard assembly

Tip!!!  Nail with 1 1/4″ nails from the plywood side you your nails won’t be seen in your finished product.

diy wood frame bed footboard assembly

Side rails – If you are using full sheets of plywood the assembly is exactly the same as the footboard. Since I was piecing together scrap wood, I used 3 separate pieces of plywood …

diy wood frame bed siderail assembly

… and left a 3/4″ gap in between each …

diy wood frame siderail assembly

… for the added rope detail.

diy wood frame siderail assembly

You can see in that picture above that I stapled pieces of white fabric behind the rope sections, but it’s totally unnecessary.  And you can see off to the right that I did clamp together any sections that didn’t seem to hold tight with just the glue and nails.

If I had been totally on my game I would have added edge banding to the ends of the plywood by the rope, but I didn’t, and you can’t really tell.

And if you are a guest coming to stay with us and for some odd reason feel like you want to point out that you really can tell that I should have added that edge banding … I warn you now … hotel rooms in Key West are expensive … tread lightly.  🙂

Now just drill your pilot holes in each end of each side rail and you’re ready to assemble the 2 x 4 frame supports that your mattress and/or box spring will rest on.

Oh, and we found wrapping the rope with painter’s tape where we wanted to cut it and just using a basic serrated knife worked great.

cutting rope with a knife

2″ x 4″ Bed Frame Support Assembly

To say I don’t have a good picture of this step is an understatement.  Sorry about that.  :/

But, you already have your pieces cut.  2 at the length of your side rails plus 4 inches and 6 at the exact same measurement as your footboard.

Just lay the two longer pieces parallel to each other and lay the other 6 down perpendicular to those creating a rectangle and attach.  I put ours 14″ apart.  🙂

diy wood frame bed assembly

I used our framing nail gun with 3 1/4 inch nails, but you could use screws, you could drill pilot holes in each 2 x 4 use and use counter sunk screws, you could use L brackets … I might just like to come up a reason to use the framing nail gun whenever I can.  🙂

I promise … a better picture of the assembled 2 x 4 frame is coming up.

Put her all together

Measure the height of your mattress and determine how high you want your bed to decide where to screw the 2 x 4 frame into each of the leg posts. diy wood frame bed assembly Two noteworthy points here – whether or not you should screw in your 2 x 4 frame all the way in by your headboard will be determined by your measurements … and many more details regarding that sad, mangled screw are coming in the next post. Screw your 2 x 4 bed frame into your side rails. diy wood frame bed assembly And where your pocket holes are accessible, screw your side rails into each leg post. diy wood frame bed assembly Since we only have a mattress for our guest bed, I had a sheet of inexpensive plywood cut to size to lay over the 2 x 4 frame … diy wood frame bed assembly

… and then I cut the 1 x 6 to lay flat over the footboard and leg posts and two little 1 x 6 pieces to cover the top of each front leg post … they overhang each end by 1/2″ and are attached with wood glue and small finish nails.

Then I added edge banding to the top of the headboard piece, …

diy wood frame bed … stained everything that needed it … diy wood frame bed … and then she’s ready for your mattress and your guests!! diy wood frame bed

And doesn’t she look so at home in the guest room?  I love her.  And she’s given this room a lot more street cred in the whole “I am a real room and people will come stay in me” department.

diy wood frame bed

But she’s also a little like “Hey cutie, what’s up?”

diy wood frame bed

Then she turns around and you’re all “Oh, sorry, I totally thought you were someone else”.  🙂

And I’m not even going to tell you what’s going on behind me as I take these pictures.  Let’s just say you might still be able to see insulation … and there might even be a sheet stapled to the studs.

Cue the maniacal laughter as I’m smelling a secret project going on back there …

Dun Dun Dunnnnnnnnn

How’s that for a suspenseful, thriller-style ending?

We’ve got all of the windows and doors on order and should have them installed next week. Once that happens we’ll be free to finish up those last few walls with drywall and paint … among a bazillion other projects in other rooms … and get some more furniture set up in here.

That bed needs some company I say.

diy wood frame bed tutorial

And if you’ve missed any step of this room upgrade you can get all caught up right here.  And check out the wood bed frame making tips I learned along the way.

what I learned about my husband while making DIY wood closet doors

So, you all know that Joel and I have the perfect relationship, right?!?!

We never fight and always speak in loving tones.

And we live in a land full of unicorns and rainbows.*

*Consider everything I’ve said so far to be a lie. 🙂

Turns out this whole process of making and hanging our first ever DIY wood closet doors gave me some good insight into that husband of mine and some useless information about myself.

diy wood closet doors

Husband Insight #1 – He likes to enable me to procrastinate on projects we are worried aren’t going to turn out well and I like to pretend to push him to get these projects done.

The doors have actually been made for over a month.  They are knotty pine, tongue and groove slats that come in packages of 6 for about $16.  After we had framed out our closet and determined the size of our door openings I started assembling the doors with wood glue.

I may or may not have insisted this was a two person job to justify not getting them done and then I would make plans (happy hour anyone?) for us on the nights he offered to help so he wasn’t available to help so they didn’t get made.  All the while proclaiming “if you could just help me they’d be done”.  I am fun.  🙂

assembling diy wood closet doors

DIY Wood Closet Doors Lesson #1

Dry fit all of the tongue and groove slats together before you start in with the glue.  Some of the slats are more warped than others (they are only 1/4 inch thick), and those actually assemble easier in the middle of the door as opposed to as an end piece.  This dry fit step is actually easier with 4 hands, but don’t let that hold up your whole progress.  🙂  And, either clamp the slats together after they have been glued, or use some old cinder blocks and a wall as a makeshift clamping system.

assembling diy wood closet doors

I eventually found the painter’s tape unnecessary, but was happy I had worked on a drop cloth because glue does seep out the bottom.  But you may not want to go with a fuzzy blanket because I did end up having to sand off some glued on blanket fuzz.

Husband Insight #2 – Joel likes to give me free reign on projects.  I can sometimes, in a weak moment, interpret that as “full blame” if things go bad. #DIYegogonebad

The whole idea for the doors was mine.  I saw the wood slats in Home Depot one day and knew we’d like the look.  I liked that we could run them through the table saw to adjust the size after they were assembled.  I called my dad and learned a good way to support them on the back would be with Z supports.  I decided to use the same 1 x 4’s we used as supports in the closet.  I decided on the measurements for the Z supports, made the cuts, glued them on and then nailed them in with 5/8″ brad nails.

assembling diy wood closet doors

Joel watched soccer.

And I started getting nervous about “my” big idea.

DIY Wood Closet Doors Lesson #2

Almost 8 feet tall, 1/4″ thick doors supported by the 1″ x 4″ Z supports do end up a sturdy door.  (Phew!)  While I used my trusty cinderblocks as clamps while the glue set securing the Z supports …

assembling diy wood closet doors … I did have to clamp the Z supports in spots to make sure they were secured flat to the back of the doors.  I used the 6-in-one tool to sneak in a little extra glue, too.

assembling diy wood closet doors

The doors were so tall I think we were both worried they would somehow just end up warping into useless piles of timber when we finally got them hung.  Luckily, with all of the proper gluing and clamping and nailing they ended up perfect for the closet.

Husband Insight #3 – Joel hates painting. I have an uncanny ability to find many more, less appealing, tasks for him to do while he’s not painting and I am.

DIY Wood Closet Doors Lesson #3

Painting small grooves is hard.  See all those little grooves in the picture above?  That is the back side of each door and there were 4 grooves per slat, plus the groove where each slat connected, times 7 slats per door, equals a pain in my painting behind!  The roller wasn’t doing it and the brush failed me, too.

Lucky for me I had an idea, and reached out to the best ever primer sponsor, KILZ, to explain my problem and got to try a new to me product, spray primer.

I started by just leaning the doors up against our house (we will be repainting the exterior so I didn’t need to protect our awesome peach paint for this) and going through the proper spray painting motions.

We all know them, right?!?!

  • Long, steady strokes across the entire surface you’re painting
  • Keep the spray can about 12-15 inches from the surface you’re painting
  • Don’t hold the can still in one spot or you risk paint drips
  • Do this all in a well ventilated area
  • 3-4 thin coats should do it

And then I followed my own spray painting rules

  • Completely lose patience with the proper technique
  • Lay doors on a flat surface
  • Spray directly into each small groove with the spray can as close to the groove as possible
  • Even out finish with paint brush – but definitely don’t over brush, just a couple long strokes to eliminate any evidence of your “too close for comfort” primer attack
  • Use a cheap brush because this primer is oil based and you’re best off just throwing it out when you’re done

And since my own priming technique was so effective I followed it up with my equally effective paint strategy.

  • Pour paint on doors (I used semi-gloss white, off the shelf)
  • With a paint brush drag the paint over the grooves in the opposite direction of the grooves
  • Brush paint smooth in the same direction as the grooves
  • Step away from the doors as you point at them declaring “I knew I could cover you with paint you tiny little slats you” and let dry completely while you gloat
painting diy wood closet doors

Here’s a little comparison shot for you.

painting diy wood closet doors

Now that the doors were all assembled, primed and painted, it was time to make sure they were the right size.

What?!?!  That seems backwards?  Keep in mind husband insight #1.  We both seriously procrastinated on this step just out of pure uncertainty about how it was going to turn out.

DIY Wood Door Lesson #4

When you have two doors opening in one large door frame you do not need 1/8″ clearance on all sides of each door.

This information comes to you courtesy of my own luckily overcomable mistake.  I looked at a number of different sources online before we got up the courage to actually run the doors through the table saw to rip them down to right size.  And everywhere I turned it was saying “leave 1/8″ clearance on all sides” of your door.

So I ran the info by Joel, explained the research, how the math translated to what we were doing … I needed his agreement so any bad cuts wouldn’t be my fault.

He was watching soccer and I got a half-hearted “seems right” response.  That was enough for me, these cuts were practically his idea.  😉

The thing I didn’t take into consideration is that we had one opening for two doors and I didn’t really want the 1/4″ gap that was going to leave us between each door if we accounted for 1/8″ for each door.

They looked bad!  We didn’t take any pictures.  I was too busy feeling the effects of insight #2 ticked off.

Luckily for us Joel had suggested we only cut 2 of the doors and see how they fit before cutting the other two.  Which left us the option to see how one cut door and one uncut door fit in each opening.

He’s so smaht!  And we were so lucky that it worked out.

guest bedroom diy wood closet doors

As far as hanging goes, we wanted a bit rustic and a bit nautical, so we used galvanized gate hinges, 3 per door lined up with the cross bars of the Z supports (which ended up being 4 inches from the top and bottom and exactly center).  We used 3 inch long screws to be sure they would be secured into the door trim and studs in the wall, and definitely drill pilot holes so your wood doesn’t split and you don’t strip your screw.

hanging diy wood closet doors

And, one of my favorite ideas, we used galvanized dock cleats for the door handles.

guest bedroom diy wood closet door handles - boat cleats

Since they are tongue and groove panels I did fill all of the edges that were the grooves with caulk and we hung the doors so those are the hinged ends.  And since we only ended up making 2 cuts, 2 of the doors still have the tongue on one side.  But, unless you’re looking for it, you won’t notice.

diy wood closet doors close up

Just like how we lined the dock cleat handles up with the grove between the boards, so even though one door has the extra 1/4″ length of the tongue, the handles visually appear equidistant from the edges of the doors.

These doors are far from perfect, but there’s something to be said for doing it all ourselves …

diy wood closet doors

 … and learning a few endearing things about each other along the way.  🙂

how to make and hang custom wood closet doors that can fit any size opening

Oh, and we just used those little cabinet magnet things to make sure they lined up nice when they were closed.  And since the screws were too long for our narrow doors I just lined the magnets up and hot glued them to the door.  They’ve worked great so far.

diy wood closet doors magnet closure

And because I may not have done the best job of holding one of the doors in position while Joel was drilling the pilot holes we ended up with a little door drag … a few minutes with some 60 grit sand paper under the door, while it was hung, did the trick.

sanding down a diy wood closet door

And let’s bow our heads now and take a moment to say good-bye forever to what this spot used to look like.  First with the paneling and drop ceilings …

removing drop ceilings in the guest bedroom

… and what we found under that lovely paneling.

guest bedroom back of closet wall before repair

Look away, look away quickly!

For anyone looking to tackle this project, here are some affiliate links to the supplies we used:

If you want to see all of the projects we’ve tackled so far in this room you can find them here.



easy DIY wall to wall closet

There was a time when I thought building a closet was going to be super complicated.

I actually spent wayyyy too much time online researching closet systems.

But nothing was exactly what I wanted and everything seemed really expensive to me.*

*”Ummmmm, everything always seems expensive to you” my sweet husband chimes in.

“Well, I would hate to have to dip into my secret Cayman account” I retort.

And so we decide to build our own wall to wall closet. 🙂

And this was also the perfect opportunity for me to try out Purebond plywood.  If you haven’t heard of it, it is a made in the US, formaldehyde free plywood made with wood from sustainable forests.  Oh, and it’s gorgeous. Thank you Purebond for supplying the plywood for this project!

Here’s the sneak peek I shared of the closet already.

easy diy wall to wall closet

And here’s the whole thing.

full view of wall to wall closet shelves

We kind of love her.  🙂

And this design is incredibly easy so let’s get right into our easy DIY wall to wall closet.

Side note:  We have discussed a few times here about framing, and some of you admitted to eyes glazing over and headaches and feeling the need to drink away your confusion, so we’re not going to go into technical detail, but we did frame in the two openings for the closet using the same concepts and similar techniques as here and here.

framing in the wall to wall closet

If you are starting with an empty space like we did, here are a few tips:

  • Decide what you are doing for doors FIRST, this will determine how big your openings need to be.
  • Run one 2″ x 4″ along the ceiling at the distance you want away from the wall and run a 2″ x 4″ down to the floor along each side wall.
  • We essentially created 4 boxes.  One that goes the entire length of the closet above the doors, one on the right side, one on the left side and one in the center.
  • Since we were going wall to wall (132 inches long) we decided we wanted two sets of doors, having that center part framed in really ended up helping us hide some of the structural elements of the closet shelves.  We like happy accidents.

Definitely don’t hesitate to email me if you have any specific questions about the framing.

And, we had the whole space primed and painted first, I definitely recommend doing that, too, if you can.

When it comes to the closet shelves, we had the nice guys at the Home Depot rip the 4 x 8 foot sheets of Purebond to 24 inches.  Our closet depth is actually 27 inches, but the 24 inch cuts made the most sense since it’s exactly half of a full sheet of plywood.  We got 4 sheets, so 8 pieces total.

Try not to be jealous of our living room workshop. 😉

prepping wall to wall closet shelves

Once I had them home I created an assembly line of sorts.  And this is how I got them ready to install.

  • lightly sand each one
  • wipe all loose dust away
  • wipe each one down with mineral spirits, let dry
  • stain with desired stain (I used ZAR brand in a Driftwood finish), let dry
  • flip and repeat all steps
prepping wall to wall closet shelves

I’ll be honest, I did polyurethane 3 of them, but didn’t get the rest finished by the time we got around to installation and I don’t think I’ll bother to finish that step.  I’ll let you know if I grow to regret that decision.  🙂

There is also some prep involved for the shelf support pieces.  Our support supply list included (the amount of each item you’ll need will depend on how many shelves you’re making):

  • 3/4 inch MDF cut in 2 inch strips to run along the back and sides of each shelf, primed and painted the wall color
  • 2″ x 4″ braces cut the height of your shelves minus 5/8 of an inch, these will be hidden
  • 2″ x 4″ braces cut the height of your shelves minus 5/8 of an inch, primed and painted the wall color
  • 1″ x 4″ strips cut the depth (from front to back) of your shelves (this is what they’re called at Home Depot, they are actually only 5/8 inches thick), sanded and stained the same color as your shelves
  • 1″ x 2″ braces cut the height of your shelves, stained to match

I’ve been working with my fair share of trim pieces these days and I have become a fan of the 6″ roller for the ones that need to be primed and painted.  For the 2″ MDF strips I just grouped them all together and rolled all at once.

So much faster than the brush!

prepping wall to wall closet shelf supports

And, knowing that these were getting screwed into the wall right under each shelf, I only primed and painted one side and one edge.

And here’s where that center wall proved to be in the perfect location to hide extra supports.

Our closet is 132 inches long.

Each piece of plywood is 8 feet long.

That left the perfect little 3 foot section for hanging clothes on the right of the closet.

So, for ease of everything we made our shelves 8 feet long starting on the left side of the closet and supported them on 1) both sides, 2) all along the back, and 3) with two additional supports for the front of the shelf.  One of the supports is hidden behind the center wall and the other is a 1 x 2 stained to match and lined up with the center of the door opening.

We definitely don’t anticipate these guys will ever sag.  🙂

Let’s take a look at some pictures.

wall to wall closet shelf supports

wall to wall closet shelf supports

wall to wall closet shelf supports

wall to wall closet shelf supports

So, the shelf installation process went like this:

  • attach 2″ MDF strips to back and side wall (check for studs with a stud finder or use anchors) with an electric drill and 1 1/4″ screws, entire support will be 8 feet long with a 3 1/2″ gap for the 2″ x 4″ behind the center support
  • attach primed and painted 2″ x 4″ support to back wall, centered behind the center wall, with our framing nail gun
  • attach other 2″ x 4″ support to back side of center wall, lined up with the 2″ x 4″ attached to the back wall, with the framing nail gun
  • attach the 1″ x 4″ stained strips to the top of each 2 x 4″ support with the framing nail gun
  • lay shelf  (we actually haven’t even attached our shelves down into the supports … but fully plan to … someday … maybe)
  • repeat for each shelf
  • we added the 1″ x 2″ supports in the front of each shelf, centered in the door opening, at the very end.

You could definitely nail everything in with 3 inch nails and a hammer, it would just take a bit more woman power.

Once we got the third shelf installed we decided to add the vertical board that would separate the hanging section of the closet.  In hindsight, we could have just as easily added the 4th shelf first, either way will work.

wall to wall closet tutorial

And then we paused to appreciate a puppy who is not a huge fan of the noise of the nail gun and compressor.

And then we went back to using the nail gun.

wall to wall closet tutorial

This time using the finish nail gun, Joel acted as the eyes (scary, I know) to make sure each shelf was at the right height and that I had the gun lined up straight and we nailed the new vertical support right into each shelf.

And you may want to wear safety glasses, if you’re safe like that.  😉

More supports to come, but we wanted to get all of the shelves installed.

The top two shelves went a little different just because they needed to run the full length of the closet, and we were still working with 8 foot long sections.

For the fourth shelf, that lines up with the top of the hanging clothes section, we used the full 8 foot piece again and then cut a piece to fit the rest of the way.

easy diy wall to wall closet

For the top shelf we actually decided to cut down two 8 foot pieces so the seam would be hidden behind the center wall.

Just personal preference on that, because that did leave us with smaller pieces leftover, which isn’t awesome.

But the idea I’ve got brewing to use those pieces for might just be awesome.  One can hope.  🙂

This shot shows one of the 1″ x 4″ supports that runs under each shelf from front to back on top of the 2″ x 4″ braces and hidden behind the center wall.

easy diy wall to wall closet shelves

For the hanging rod I was able to cut down the rod we had taken out of the previous closet with our reciprocating saw, and I just used scrap pieces of the 1″ x 4″ cut to the same size as the rod supports.

I just clamped the two scrap pieces at the same time to a 2 x 4 and used a hole saw the same diameter as my rod to cut holes in them.  The hole you cut out will stick in your hole saw so just remove the first one before trying to drill all the way down through the second one.

easy diy wall to wall closet

You could just buy a set of rod supports that are easy to screw in, but they were about $5 and plastic and the hole saw was about $6.  I’d always rather spend the money on a tool I will be able to use again. #toolhoarder

That 2″ x 4″ underneath is key so you don’t accidentally drill into any nice wooden tables. For those of us who tend to do home improvement on their “nice” furniture.  🙂

You will need to cut more of an opening on one side so you can slide your rod in and out.  I just drew a few lines and cut out what I thought would look good with my jig saw. It’s nothing fancy.

easy diy wall to wall closet bracket

Big important tip here!! Be sure to use nails short enough that they don’t go all the way through the 3/4 inch vertical board when you’re nailing your rod support in.  I came thisclose to making that mistake.

Holy cow I would have been so ticked at myself.

A little sanding and staining to match and they pretty much blend right in.  And I love the look of the galvanized metal rod.

full view of wall to wall closet shelves

And the painted supports under each shelf all but disappear in there after a little spackling, caulk and touch up since they are painted the same color as the wall.

wall to wall closet finishing steps

We added a little 4 inch high baseboard around the bottom and magically made the edges of the plywood look like wood with stainable Birch (to match the plywood) edging. (Link to check out the product at the end of this post.)

Edge banding is an iron on stainable wood veneer.  I ironed it on the 4 shelves that were the full 8 foot length first and then stained it to match.  For the vertical board and the two top shelves I actually stained the veneer first and then ironed it on after the closet had been built.  I wanted to run the veneer the full length of the closet without a seam.

The only hiccup being where the iron didn’t fit behind the small wall sections.  We just used a few blocks of wood to ‘clamp’ the edging to the shelves and wood glue to secure those sections as best we could.

wall to wall closet finishing steps

Honestly, if I were to do it again I’d probably just buy more 1″ x 2″ strips, stain them to match and attach them to the front of each shelf.  It would have been slightly more expensive, which is why I went with the edging in the first place, but the install with finish nails would have been easier for me.

I may have cursed that sliding edging and the hot iron close to my delicate little fingers and all the little trimming of excess edging and glue a few times.

wall to wall closet finishing steps

And for those of you who actually use your iron for clothing (weird!) you should use a rag between the edging and your iron to prevent any glue or stain (if you are in the stain first, iron later camp) from ruining your iron.

I tried that for a hot second until I realized I needed to actually see if the edging was lining up with the plywood, so good luck with that.  🙂

But, it’s hard to even remember this wall used to look like this.

how to diy an easy wall to wall closet

Oh, and doors would be nice, right?!?!  We’ve tried our hand at DIYing four of them with some hopefully fun details.  As soon as the hardware store gets restocked with hinges we should be able to install them so I can share the whole deal.

Update:  The doors are finished and hung, and I learned a few things about my husband along the way, read all of the details here.

guest bedroom diy wood closet doors

And hopefully they fit the openings perfectly.  What are the odds of that actually happening?

Either way, doors will be a huge success in Joel’s eyes since he likes to claim this closet as “the perfect place for old cameras and pine cones and a pillow in a crate”.

Hmm, someone might have thought I was going to unpack the boxes we still have in our kitchen and dining room and get a little organized.  Oops.  😉

And for anyone looking to tackle this project, here are a few affiliate links to some of the tools we used:

And if you’ve missed any part of our Key West home renovation you can get caught up right here.

open cabinets {with $32 wood slat backs}

open cabinets

Back in December, when I was on my little DIY trip to get some work done on rental properties we have in MD, it was freezing! Well, it actually wasn’t freezing outside but it was down right frigid in the house.  (You can see more of my lovely cold weather DIY outfit here.) That’s where I’ll start to explain that I really did think I had taken some better pictures.  I guess the foggy mess I saw on the camera wasn’t just my breath … but a not-totally-focused or properly exposed picture as well.  Sorry about that!

But that doesn’t put a damper on my excitement of the transformation I was able to make in this worn little kitchen in about a week. We started with the counter transformation, then we updated the cabinets … and left most of the cabinet doors off, and then updated the hardware on the cabinets we kept AND then we backed the newly open cabinets to give it a wood slat look on a $32 budget.

Let’s remember what the cabinets looked like before … Continue reading open cabinets {with $32 wood slat backs}

how to make a wood coffee table out of an old door {an upcycle tutorial}

Happy Friday!!  How was your week?

I feel like I came back to the island from our trip to the US ‘swinging’, so to speak.  Just ready to get things in order and become more productive and efficient in everything.  And get focused on my personal priorities … which definitely includes learning the ins and outs of our new camera!!

So I can take better pictures of our current favorite project, our new coffee table that I made from an old door I pulled out of a dumpster.
old door

Continue reading how to make a wood coffee table out of an old door {an upcycle tutorial}

restoring {old wood} scrape, strip and sand

I have just finished my second old door project around here, and after my DIY day by the pool with my girlfriends I’ve started looking more constructively at how I work with old wood.
old door

It was fun to be with my friends, and showing them new things, and realizing that what seems second nature to me might be new to others.  So, here are some of my thoughts as I work with old wood.  Some are technical, some are personal preference, some are physical and some are mental tips.  Hopefully you find some, little bit of it useful. 🙂 Continue reading restoring {old wood} scrape, strip and sand

month in minutes {july 2012}

Check this out … the monthly review in the first week of the following month.  #surprisedmyselfwithmyefficiency 😉

July has always been a favorite month of mine … and it proved to be the same on the blog.

I started the month begging asking for help as I started to undertake a living room redo.

So far, as part of the Blogging without Borders series we have made a floating shelf and started work on DIYing a coffee table.  I am reeeally hoping to have that for you at the next update. If this review is old news to you, head over to see what the other gals are up to.
blogging without borders

We had a bunch of fun with decor on this new floating shelf.  Well, I know I did, I hope you did, too.  🙂 From the initial attempt, an early fall mantel and the most recent where we finally brought ‘the girls‘ back and added a pop of color with a spray painted leaf wreath.
fall mantel


How to Build a Floating Shelf Tutorial is here!

I enjoyed putting together a round-up of 105 ideas for your 4th of July celebration.  What a great resource! I was a day late so feel free to pin it for next year.  🙂

And I also made another piece of pallet word art that I adore.  It has been the perfect, sun shiny addition to our rooftop pallet bed area.

July was also great fun for me as part of the Hometalk Ambassador team.  I had a blast with my girlfriends at our DIY pool party.  And it gave me chance to help my friend Carol learn how to use an electric drill.
diy table

I feel like I shared a lot more of my personal life on the blog in July.  You all went through the journey that was our pup’s surgery, it began with a big decor decision that we still love everyday.  🙂

And, I also posted a letter to one of our nephews on his 5th birthday.  I find the blog to be a good outlet for things like that. The positive reinforcement that you guys sent my way was amazing!  And I’m happy to report that Mico’s blood work came back even better than the vet expected. Super Smile.  🙂

Then, in what I hope was a fun week for all, I shared home tours of beautiful houses of friends’ of mine on this island that were featured in the finale of the Bachelorette.



And I couldn’t finish the week without giving you my insider’s tips for vacationing in Curacao.  Who doesn’t love a list of free things to do on vacation? 🙂

July was also a month for another installment of the Mission: Possible link party where we all shared our most inspiring, colorful project.  If you’re in need of some color inspiration you need to check out the links here.

Thank you all for sticking around.  It sure is more fun with you out there.  🙂

the great outdoors {diy door trough}

Do you ever have those ideas that just spring you into action?

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I was trying to organize my week. My eyes landed on my little spring wreath and I thought “I need to update the door decor”. Then I thought “I need a great outdoors idea”.  And it just came to me.

I thought it was going to be so easy I took a photo of my watch so I could track the time. Continue reading the great outdoors {diy door trough}