diy

Candlestick Earring Display

Posted on Updated on

Earring Display 1 Dollar Tree. Thrift Store. IKEA.

How delighted was I when 3 finds from 3 of my favorite places mashed together to be the perfect organizer for my earrings and bracelets? Well, soooooo delighted that it ended my blogging hiatus! YAY me and not to brag or anything, but hopefully, YAY YOU!

This was like, these easiest, fastest thing EVER to make. No kiddin! Also, these items are pretty much readily available. Ya know what I mean? Sometimes I’ll find this grrrreat Pin and I think how I’ll make the item, only to be unable to find ANY of the supplies because they were at one-of-a-kind thrift store gold mines! Ugh. If you don’t live near an IKEA, just add the plate to your mental “Gotta Have It” list and stop by next time you are happening to be near one. I bought one in June when we went to The World’s Ugliest Dog Show (our dogs lost…. of course!) and liked them so much I bought 3 more in Seattle in May when we went to see our son compete in his first triathlon (he did SO good!)

Here are the items you will need to complete this project…

  • TOOLS

2-Part Epoxy (available at Dollar Tree)

Epoxy

  • SUPPLIES

Tall-ish candlestick (Tall enough to let your earrings dangle. I found mine at a second hand store)

Tall Candlestick Thrift Store 1

Short Candlestick (Almost always at Dollar Tree)

Short Candletstick Dollar Tree 1

Small Plate with Cutouts (This one is from the gardening area at IKEA)

Cut Out Plate 1

For this project, the only thing I did was to glue the plate on the tall candlestick. Follow this link to read what I have to say about buying epoxy at the dollar store. There are also pictures and a tutorial…

https://dumpsterdivingdarling.wordpress.com/private-diy-super-simple-apothecary-jar/

The short candlestick is simply placed on the center of the plate. I’d really love to find something candle sized to fit in the top of the short candlestick. I could use it for rings!

The tall candlestick I used has a mercury style paint job on the inside. I love it and have been working on mimicking the paint technique on other items. I’ve pretty much nailed it by using mirror paint with black paint overlaid. I will really try to do a blog on that soon-ish. Pinky swear! The next one of these I’m doing, I’ve already painted the outside of the tall candlestick. You may want to paint yours to match your décor. But, you may just get lucky like I did and find something you love that already matches. Like I did 🙂

As with all of my posts, please feel free to let me know how your own creation turned out. I’d love to share your stuff!

Advertisements

Three Tiered Fruit Bowl diy

Posted on Updated on

wpid-photogrid_1398341452931.jpg

My family eats a lot of veggies and fruit… forcibly, by MOM.

Actually, we are trying to eat more fruits and veggies. The problem is, if we don’t see it, we don’t eat it. I had a little metal fruit bowl with a banana hook. It worked great, for bananas. And maybe like 3 oranges. It just wasn’t big enough to hold anything else. Of course, I also read a Pin about how you are supposed to separate your bananas from the bunch to make them last longer. Or maybe that helps them ripen. No matter… that banana bowl contraption did not work. I looked around and just couldn’t find another basket, bowl, or crate I really liked. Then, the other day, I was organizing my china cabinet (check out this post for that… https://dumpsterdivingdarling.wordpress.com/2014/04/03/how-to-add-color-to-your-china-cabinet-without-spending-a-fortune/) and I needed to clear some space on the counter.

I had been working on this…
wpid-img_204783406008082.jpg.jpeg

As my pie-server-turned-plate-rack waited it’s turn for perfect pantry placement, I began stacking stuff on it. Some fruit was laying on the counter. To make more organization-in-waiting counter space for the china, I put the fruit on the plate rack, and I saw the obvious… my new fruit basket!

Here’s what I started with….

3 Tiered Fruit Bowl 4

I’ve seen these pie servers a lot in thrift shops. I can see why they were tossed, since ivy has lost it’s decorative appeal. They are usually cheap too. I paid only $1.95 for mine. Fortunately, the ivy and the wire it is attached to, is easily removed. Just be careful when doing so, because it can cut you! Pliers are my tool of choice for this job. Make sure there are no jagged edges and sand the stand. I didn’t sand mine of course, because I wanted it now, lol.

3 Tiered Fruit Bowl 2

 

I had already painted it, and the colors match my kitchen, so I began looking for baskets. Around the house, I couldn’t find enough baskets that fit, so for the time being, I just used plates. My friend Melissa used to work at, and has volunteered at several thrift shops. She has great tips on buying from them. On Thursdays, she is starting to blog about it! Here’s the link… http://singinghoneybee.blogspot.com/2014/04/thrifting-thursday-how-i-decorate-on.html

The next day I set out, determined to find thrift store baskets for my new fruit bowl, and The Singing Honey Bee was so right! I not only found three matching baskets, they were also brand new and were only .50 cents each! They really couldn’t be more perfect if they were made specifically for this project. Really, thrifting is amazing! Mr. Matrimony was evev enamored with these baskets. So much, that he asked me not to paint them. Egads… no spray painting??? What ever is a spray-paint addict to do?

He really doesn’t ask for that much, and he takes such god care of me… so I obliged him. They are awfully pretty baskets…

 

3 Tiered Fruit Bowl 3

I’m very satisfied with how my 3-tiered fruit basket turned out. I’m also certain the family will eat more fresh fruits and veggies The only problem is, now I need to go out and find more of these pie servers because I keep stealing them from other projects!

3 Tiered Fruit Bowl 5

Now, we have copious amounts of fruits and veggies, staring us down at almost eye level! We have been eating more. And plus, is there even a better way to add color to your kitchen than by using real produce?
No. No, there is not.

3 Tiered Fruit Bowl 1

What do you use for a fruit bowl in your home? Do you eat more fresh produce when it is easily seen?

Make Your Dining Room POP with Color!!! (Part One: Fabric Covered Chargers)

Posted on Updated on

On one of my very first trips to Hobby Lobby, I found this ribbon….

My Surprising Inspiration

I bought it for the specific purpose of adorning baby Onesies I sell online. Over the past months while working on crafting, I’ve realized this particular ribbon out of the many I 0wn, is the one that always catches my eye first. Often, my eye lingers on it. It never ever dawned on me to use such bold colors in my home. I’m not sure why. In many ways (probably most of my ways) I’m bold. I’ve just never done anything like that in my décor. I took a step out in faith in bright colors, and added a piece of this ribbon, about 10 inches long, to a sort of art piece I have in my kitchen. From that little tiny step, I made multiple baby steps. Then, I made a couple of small puddle jumps, finally leaping into the china cabinet in the dining room to add some color. To some, it may not seem like a leap at all. For me it was huge. Now, I don’t know if I can be stopped!

I’m not saying these colors (all of which by-the-way, look like they escaped from my Aunt Betty’s 60’s kitchen) are going to be plastered all over the house. But, I am saying they are going to be a lot more prevalent in our home’s décor. I’m loving them so much and they just make me smile! How could I not want that happy happy joy joy to come from every-other-here-and-there?

For this series, I was inspired by some chargers I saw that were covered in burlap, so today on a girl’s day out, some friends took me to the big city. Imagine my delight, when we were in Hobby Lobby, and in the 30% off fabrics were coordinating fabrics that go with my ribbon! I couldn’t believe it! I almost didn’t get even any of the fabrics that match, but my friend Ruth stepped in. She pointed out that I could do more than one print on my chargers. I am so serious in telling you, this had never crossed my mind. People are always saying I’m so creative, but truly, moments like Ruth finding 3 coordinating fabrics that I love, but can’t even envision in my home, just humbles me. I was walking all over the fabric department, like a crazed loon (we had girls waiting for us in the car!), searching for just the right fabric. I had one bolt in my arm that had jumped out at me. As I looked at it more though, while carrying it around, it just seemed a little boring. It had fun colors in it, but it wasn’t fun colored…. ya know what I mean? Well, I went back over to Ruth’s picks and realized the main one is the exact same pattern as my now favorite ribbon!

DSC02477

I jumped in all the way! I became bold about designing my dining room table settings, and I’m going to enjoy the jump! I’ll bring my camera and keyboard along for the ride so that all of you can share in the joy that IS color in our home!

Here’s what you’ll need for this project….

DSC02457

SUPPLIES~

  • Chargers
  • Fabric (3/8 of a yard will cover 3 chargers)

(The coordinating ribbon, twine, and embellishments  are for part 2)

TOOLS~

  • Spray Adhesive
  • Scissors
  • Pen/Pencil/Marker

First, place your charger upside-down on your fabric, like this….

DSC02406

Make a circle around your charger about one inch away from the outer edge, like this….

DSC02411

Following the directions of your spray adhesive, coat the charger. The brand I used said to use a medium coat. Further, the directions said to adhere items together permanently, put them together quickly, after spraying. I sprayed a medium-heavy amount on my chargers and the fabric until I could kinda see the glue on it everywhere. To place the fabric on the chargers, I started in the middle by folding the fabric in half, glue side out. Here’s what it looked like when I first put the fabric on the charger….

DSC02480Starting from the center, and working your way out, press the fabric down. Make sure to work quickly and press out any wrinkles as you go. If you make a mistake, don’t fret. You can remove the fabric and start over. I did 😉

Note: This could probably be Mod Podged. I’ll probably try it another day. If/when I do, I’ll let you know how it turned out. If you get to it first, you can let me know!

When you get to the edge, you have options. I did the first one so that it was finished like this….

DSC02500

I cut the fabric right up to the outside edge of the charger. To hide the raw edge of the fabric, I covered it up with two strips of twine I glued (with a glue gun) right over it. This is my favorite look.
On the rest of the chargers, I simply sprayed around the edge of the under side of the fabric and outer edge of the chargers. Then I pressed the fabric to the bottom, like this….
DSC02487DSC02488

I finished the rest of my chargers with this method. It was late, and I needed to get to bed. Now, I wish I would have taken the extra effort and done them with the twine. It really did not take much longer and the finished look on the underside of the chargers is so much better. Not that my guests will be lifting up the chargers and looking at my finished edges (although, if they are readers of my blog, they may!). I just know the little bit messier crumpled edge is there. Live and learn, right?

Here’s so more pictures of my finished chargers.

DSC02507

DSC02493

 

They are super super SUPER cute! I can’t wait to have company to show them off to. Until then, I added to my china cabinet vignettes. Now it has even more color and I can’t stop looking at it! You can see how I added color to my china cabinet without spending a fortune by checking out this link….
https://dumpsterdivingdarling.wordpress.com/2014/04/03/how-to-add-color-to-your-china-cabinet-without-spending-a-fortune/

DSC02510

Look for part two of this series to find out how I made the napkin rings!

 

Tin Wall Vase

Posted on Updated on

 

 

wpid-photogrid_1396823411647.jpg
Recently, my sister-in-law, Teresa, moved back “home”. She had wanted to do so for probably 30 years, but life wouldn’t let her. Things in life change. She went back to school and became an RN. Her sons are grown men. Life just kinda opened up for her, and home she came. We’ve all been blessed by her return, because she is such a beautiful and fun person. A momentous occasion such as this deserves a monumental gift. But alas, Mr. Matrimony and I are having a moratorium on spending this month. Fortunately for Teresa, I have copious amounts of purple spray paint and purple is her favorite color! Also, I’ve been wanting to do some kind of commemorative crafty venture in celebration of one of the catapults that started me on my blog… my first Pin. Well, it’s the first Pin I remember. I’d be surprised if any Pinterest follower hasn’t Pinned this Pin and was equally impressed by it. Here’s the Pin I’m speaking of….

Wine Bottle Wine Vase

I’m not sure who the original Pinner was, but the idea and picture came from http://www.shanty-2-chic.com/. If you haven’t seen their blog, what is wrong with you??? Get on over there and check it out!

Anyways, I really wanted to do something that was my own idea infused with this one. After searching the dungeon basement for some inspiration to go along with my copious amounts of purple spray paint, I stumbled (Quite literally. We really need to clean up down there) across a lid from a brown square biscuit tin. The color of the lid reminded me of these little doohickies I bought at Lowe’s eons ago….

wpid-0406142004.jpg

By-the-way, always, always ask at a manager at Lowe’s if they can go any lower on the clearance price. The day I found these doohickies (which are technically “Decorative Corner Plates”, or fancy trim pieces made to look like wood), the manager had just found out he needed to reset an entire aisle two weeks earlier than her previously thought. He had to get rid of stuff FAST! So, he told me any clearance stuff I wanted that day, I could have an additional 90% off. You can guarantee Mr. Matrimony and I were moving around those clearance displays like nobodies business! The doohickies turned out to be .10 cents for a package of four. We bought like two dozen packages. For reals! I didn’t know what I’d do with them, but I knew they needed to go home with me.

Purple Swirl

So, here’s what you’ll need for this project….

wpid-0405141139.jpg

 Supplies~

  • Tin lid (round, square, any shape will be fine)
  • Small bottle (I found this one at the dollar store
  • Flange
  • Threaded Bolt with No Head
  • 2 Nuts and Bolts to Fit the Flange Outer Holes
  • Decorative Trim (not necessary, but it really adds to the cute factor)
  • Small Wire (not pictured, sorry!)

To make this much easier, take the following picture to your hardware store when you are purchasing supplies. I do not know the technical names and I don’t want you feeling as silly as I would have had I not been with Mr. Matrimony. He translated for me. He speaks Wifeish and Tool Guy. Tell the guy you need to make sure all the pieces fit together. . He’ll make sure they fit for you.

You’re welcome 😉

Take this picture with you!!!
Take this picture with you!!!

 

Purple Swirl

wpid-0405141134.jpg

Tools~

  • Large Nail
  • Hammer
  • Wire Cutters
  • Screwdriver
  • Spray Paint
  • Icky Paint Brush (not pictured)
  • Epoxy (hot glue may be ok for this project, I just don’t know for certain)

First, decide how you will place the trim and bottle on your tin. Do you want the bottle hanging below the trim? Do you want it symmetrical? I didn’t really even think about how mine would go together, because it just kinda went the way it did. I don’t know how I would’ve placed anything differently. When you are certain of how you want it, Place the flange (the thingie with the 3 holes) where it will be on the lid. Make two marks where the bolts will go. Remove the piece and hammer the big nail all the way through both marks. Remove the nail, it’s only to make the holes.

wpid-0405141146c.jpgwpid-0405141147a.jpg

This is usually something I would say to use a drill with. I decided on a different route for two reasons…

  1. Way too many people have said to me if they have to use a drill on something, they probably won’t make it. I totally get that and I used to be the same way (before Mr. Matrimony and his totally organized tool room). So, even though I am now a drill girl, I thought a different way of making these holes would be appropriate here 🙂
  2. Mr. Matrimony wasn’t home and I couldn’t contact him to ask which drill bit to use on metal :/

Adhere the decorative piece to the lid. Wait for the epoxy (or glue) to dry thoroughly. Next, physically distress the tin piece. Whack it with a hammer, the claw of the hammer, scratch it, dent it, put little nail holes almost all the way through…. whatever you want… like this….

wpid-0405141148.jpgwpid-0405141148a.jpg

Now give it a good coat of paint. Primer first if you want. I didn’t want the primer showing through when I distressed it. Let the first coat dry all the way. It may take a little extra time with the tin. It did with mine! Here’s what it looks like with one coat….

wpid-0405141152.jpg

Quite by accident, I have a new way of distressing. I did this repair job in our sink at our rental house. The brush that came with the kit was not so great (hairs kept coming out!) so I used my nice little brush I use for painting precarious parts of walls and trim. To make sure I keep my nice little brush nice, I bought an expensive brand of brush cleaner. Turns out it wasn’t worth the extra cost! Not intentionally, I left the nice little brush in a container with the cleaner in it for over two weeks. I checked it yesterday, and it is still coated with this enamel stuff that I used to repair the sink. I felt it, and the brushes kinda just all mush together. Ruined!
Or was it???

Nope! I now have a brand new use for my not-so-nice little brush! I simply took it out of the cleaner, wiped it on my painting table to make it not so wet, and brushed it onto the wet paint on the lid. I did it several times until I got the desired look.
wpid-0405141236.jpg

wpid-img_9534357659543.jpeg

It was pretty neato! As a bonus, I don’t even have to clean the brush. It just gets placed back into the container with the cleaner, and my next project will get a whole different patina… I feel next to genius!

Thank me! Thank me very much!!!

Let the whole thing dry until it is super dry, not ADHD dry. Like, even overnight. After it is super dry, you can (finally) attach the hardware. The flangie thing goes on first. Put the bolts through but don’t put the nuts on them yet.

wpid-img_9509449765906.jpeg

Before you put the nuts on, you are going to make the hanger part that you’ll use to hang it from the wall. Turn the piece over, and wrap the end of your little piece of wire around one of the bolts. Leave the amount of slack you want (about an inch and a half) and wrap the other end of wire around the other bolt. Twist the wire good around itself on either end, so it won’t slip. On top of the wire, place the nuts. Tighten them as tight as you can so the flange won’t move around and so the wire will be super secure. The back will look like this….

wpid-0406142243b.jpg

Now you can continue putting the hardware on the front together. Here’s how it goes….

wpid-img_9497007682057.jpegwpid-img_9514896154446.jpegThe last piece goes on with bottle. Don’t screw it on too tight. You are dealing with glass here!

wpid-img_9520307281059.jpeg

NOTE: I will change how I did this project with the next one I do. When I hung mine up, it kind of bent down with the weight of the jar when it was full of water. To make it sturdier, next time I’ll cut a little board to fit into the back side of the lid. I’ll use screws instead of bolts which will not only attach the flangie thing to the lid, but it will also attach the lid to the piece of wood. Also, I’ll use a regular wall hanger or attach a similar wire one with screws going into the board from the back side.

That’s it! Now you have utter cuteness to hang on your own wall! Please people…. share! Share pictures with me of what you have done! I’d so enjoy seeing them. Now, here’s some of mine….

wpid-img_9642361384450-12.jpg.jpeg

 

wpid-img_9628312773778.jpegwpid-img_8862224858545-12.jpg.jpeg

 

Guest Toiletries Container with Chalkboard Labels

Posted on Updated on

image

When we go on road trips, I always ask housekeeping for extra coffee and extra toiletries. They’re always so sweet and happily give me handfuls of each. The coffee is because one little package is never enough in a hotel room. I save the toiletries for my guests at home. We no longer have a guest bathroom, or for that matter, a guest bedroom. However, all we need do is banish Mr. Awesome to the dungeon  basement, and voila… guest room! For the guest toiletries I gather on our journeys, I found a fun, wide, pink-tinted vase someplace in the dungeon basement and discovered I could fit quite a few of the little toiletry bottles into it. Here’s how I made the labels….

What you need~
image

  • Sheet of Plain Stickers (I think my mama bought mine at Office Depot)
  • Flat Black Spray Paint (you can use chalkboard paint, but the .98 generic flat black is way cheaper)
  • White or Silver marker (I recommend Sharpie Brand Oil Paint Marker)

wpid-PhotoGrid_1396480826336.jpg

 

First, spray paint the entire sheet of stickers. I took a picture of mine halfway through. It’s kinda hard to see the outlines of the stickers, but you get the idea…
image

wpid-PhotoGrid_1396481736566.jpg

Next, simply use the marker to write what you like. I did a LOT of practice fails before I got some nailed its! While I was at it, I made some for my coffee canisters….
image

When you have the stickers just so, simply attach them to your vase. Fill with your pretty little toiletries from the sweet housekeeping people, kick your kid into the dungeon basement, and ask some friends to stay the night! You’ll be ready 😉

wpid-storageemulated0DCIMCamera04021414132.jpg.jpg
My guest toiletries on my towel shelf made from a bicycle basket. Sweet!

wpid-PhotoGrid_1396481376117.jpg

d.i.y. Plate Rack

Posted on Updated on

wpid-PhotoGrid_1395700436028.jpgMy friend, The Pink Nurse, asked me to do a tutorial on my plate rack. I was like, um, uh… ok?
For reals.
I’m actually a little embarrassed that when she finds out what it’s made from, she’s gonna be like, um, uh… ok? lol…
For reals!

Why? Because of what I made it out of. This….
drying rack

I know, right???
It’s one of those, “I want it right now” things. Mr. Matrimony said he would make a fance dancy plate rack for me. You know the kind, with the dowels. Well, it hasn’t happened yet, so I decided I would do it myself. My mama says my first word wasn’t a word. It was a paragraph. And it started with, “I do it my TELF!” Somehow I wasn’t surprised. Neither is anyone who knows me. Anyways, I wanted the plate rack NOW. So I made one….

PhotoGrid_1390872289727

I don’t have pictures of the how-to, but I think it’s pretty self-explanatory. I started by taking the screws out that are at the “hinge” places. You’ll be left with 3 pieces. The smallest piece (the part the cups are sitting on in the picture above), the medium size one (the part above the cups), and the large piece (the part the cups are leaning against and is half of what the plates are sitting on). The smallest piece will not be used for this project. Save it for another project. You can buy these racks without a shelf for the cups, but that isn’t what I had on hand.

Next, carefully remove every-other slat. As they are, they’re too close for plates to fit between them. Do this with the largest piece and the medium-sized one. Once you are done with this step, paint both of those pieces, plus one removed long slat.

When the paint is dry, the pieces are ready to be assembled in your cabinet. I am not sure about measuring or anything on this. I just kept trying until it was at the correct angle for my plates. My son helped me by holding the rack in various positions while I slid a plate into it and made sure it fit. I also made certain the plate was easily removed. Once I found that position, I placed the single board in front of the bottom part of the large piece. Then, I nailed it into place (you can use screws if you wish). Now, my son held the plate for me while I slid the medium-sized piece under it to find the position it needed to be in. This part is integral. Without it, the plates won’t stand up-right. They’ll just fall right over! When you’ve found the perfect place for the now bottom piece to sit in your cabinet, nail or screw it in place. It would most likely be best to drill holes first. I didn’t, but I think I got lucky with those tiny pieces of wood not splitting.

Now, simply put the large piece in place. I didn’t attach mine to the cabinet. That’s why I have the slat across the bottom. It keeps the large piece from moving. I also wanted to be able to remove it from the cabinet to clean.

Oh… that’s a good one! Clean…. lol

Seriously, I didn’t attach it, because I don’t know how!

Here’s a look at my finished product….

0127141305

And here’s what it looks like in my cabinet, with the other stuff I have in there….

wpid-PhotoGrid_1395699733393.jpg

Pretty sweet, huh? I really like how it turned out, perfect or not, even if it was more not than it was perfect!

As I typed out this blog, the more I wrote about the project, the more I was a little embarrassed. I know most crafty people out there can do such a better job at this than myself. Mr. Matrimony could do WAY better than this. Here’s the problem though… I wanted it NOW!
I’ll make sure to show you a full how-to when he gets one made RIGHT. It just won’t be right now

On Friday evenings I enjoy The Weekend Wind-Down Party at http://dedivahdeals.com/2014/04/04/weekend-wind-party-2/
There are so many great ideas there! Please take a few moments to check it out.
Thanks!

d.i.y. Porch Chair Swing

Posted on Updated on

Make Your Own Chair Swing

This project was the first one Mr. Matrimony and I did together that I hoped someday to have on a blog. Again, I wasn’t sure of how the whole bloggie thingie worked, so I don’t have the greatest pictures of the step-by-step. The ones I do have were put together on Photo Grid. I had to go back and “un-grid” them to show them singly. The result is less than perfect. Like MUCH less than perfect. The “during” pictures are fuzzy from being re-gridded, unfocused, and taken with a shoddy camera. However, to me, it’s amazing I have anything at all to work with! As I’ve warned you before, if you are looking for perfection, you’re on the wrong blog!

Come to my blog for inspiration and pointers.
I’m ADHD, not OCD
(or any other letters of the alphabet.)

Speaking of inspiration, here is mine for this project…
chair swing
I found this idea on Pinterest. I do not know who the original Pinner is. When I went to find out, the Pin was just plastered all over Pinterest. It’s a very popular Pin! So, if you know who the original Pinner is, please let me know and I will give them credit.

For us, here’s how this particular venture in repurposing began…
Mr. Matrimony was getting ready to light the bonfire burn-pile.
It.
Was.
HUGE.

Like, giNORmous!

Right when I happened to look over, he was holding a perfectly good broken chair seat and getting ready to toss it on top of the pile. The BURN pile! Really… who does that???
I yelled, “WAIT!”
Surprised, he looked at me and said, “What?”
I told him not to throw that perfectly good broken chair seat away.
He said, “Sweetie… we are not saving junk.”
I said, “It isn’t junk…. Sweetie. It’s the beginning of a chair swing we’re going to make for my blog.”
He flatly replied, “First, you don’t have a blog. Second, I’m not building a swing. Third, you don’t have a blog.”
I quickly responded, “First, I will. Second, YOU aren’t. WE are. And third, I will.”
He just shook his head, handed me the chair part, and mumbled something about how he knew he was going to be roped into making a swing.

Well, let me just say right now…
1) I have a blog.
2) WE did make a swing… together.
3) I HAVE A BLOG

To his surprise (and mine!), Mr. Matrimony actually had a good time helping me. He was able to teach me a few things he knew about carpentry, help me set up props for pictures, and he liked the finished project. We both had fun and agreed we would do more projects together. He even bought me a camera for Christmas to encourage me with my blog!

Mr. Matrimony really is the best

Kelly and Heather Sweethearts
Awwwww…….

Alrighty. Here’s what you’ll need.

Chair Swing2

Tools~

  • Drill with a big ol’ bit for a big ol’ rope
  • Screws
  • I don’t remember everything we used (it was last summer), but I’m sure you can gather things as you go along. I did *smile*

Materials~

  • Chair seat (You can use most any kind, I reckon. They are everywhere!)
  • Two 2×4 pieces of lumber that are 4 inches longer than the widest part of the chair seat. We got lucky and found a cull piece that had been treated for outdoor use. If you will be using your swing out in the elements, I’d say pre-treated would be a must. Ours will be hanging under a roof, so I’d feel safe using untreated 2x4s that have been painted.
  • Wood glue
  • Spray paint (and primer, if you want to use it)
  • Twine ~ I used green hemp, and some sort of yellow nylon-ish stuff. This is just for looks, so strength is not a factor. Use it to wrap around the rope when you’re done tying the knots.
  • Screws for attaching the chair seat to the 2x4s
  • Two super heavy duty “eye” bolts. If you aren’t sure of what size to get, ask a pro at the store. (These aren’t needed if you are wrapping your rope around whatever you are hanging it from, ie: tree limb)
  • VERY THICK rope (This part is expensive… We spent about 25 bucks on ours!) At the hardware store we bought ours at, there was a guide next to each size of rope that told how much weight it holds per foot. Also, we needed enough to loop around itself at the top, for the knot. Mr. Matrimony did the math. Here’s what I think of math…

Math

I know…. SQUIRREL!
(But super funny squirrel, huh???)

The first thing to do is CLEAN that chair! Almost all perfectly good broken chairs have not been treated as such. They’ve most likely been tossed out on the side of the road, forgotten in the basement, or found in a gully (I don’t know why, I ran out of places). That kind of treatment will make a perfectly good broken chair dirty. So clean it. This is not a part I skimp on. I once bought a birdcage for .08 cents at the auction (it was with a pile of junk I got for a few bucks and that was the average). The birdcage was SO cute and I had a plethora of ideas for it. Before I knew what I was doing, I was spray painting it! Mind you, in “cleaning” it, I’d only gone over it with a rag for a brief moment. When I was done painting the birdcage, I proudly hung it up in the window. A little while later, I was walking by, and something (actually, a bunch of somethings) moving in the light caught my eye. It was hair.
Cat hair.
A LOT of cat hair.
*smh* (shaking my head)
Nowwwww, I know why they didn’t need the birdcage anymore!
So, I learned the lesson of cleaning things (including sanding when needed) before I begin painting.
So clean that chair!
And sand it. Have you ever hand a big ol’ splinter in your bum cheek? No? Neither have I, but once (in middle school) in fun, I pushed my friend Susan over on the bench in PE, so I could sit next to her and she fell on the floor SCA-REAM-ING! She hand a 3 inch (I kid you not) splinter in her bum cheek.
OUCH.

Sand that chair, okay?

Now Paint. You may even want to paint your chair when you’re finished assembling it, cause it undoubtedly will need touch-up paint from getting moved around so much…. ours did! I chose to paint my first AND do touch-up because it’s hard to get paint in every little crevice after I’ve assembled pieces, such as the support boards. As you can see, I didn’t paint the part of the wood that connects to the chair, because I’m cheap. Everything else, I painted. When a person is actually swinging at most any height, the bottom of the chair can be seen. Oh, and I didn’t use primer. I am probably going to change my color scheme (cause that’s what I do) so why bother? Because, you might say, it makes the paint go on more evenly! No argument here. Again, I’m just cheap. By all means, do things the right way. I did mine the right now way.

Chair Swing 4

When the paint is dry (like really dry, not ADHD dry), turn the chair upside-down, and lay the boards on the bottom of the seat (which is now the top?) where you want them and mark the edges, so you can apply the glue to the bottom of the chair.  Put the boards on the glue and screw them in place.  Pre-measure your screws so the first person to sit down does not get the point.  Do You?  lol… (that was Mr. Matrimony’s joke. Funny boy)

Don’t skimp on the glue!

A Carpenter friend of Mr. Matrimony once told him that the screws or nails are only used to hold materials together until the glue dries. The glue will be stronger than the wood when it is dry.
A note while we are on the topic of glue… If you look closely at the back of our chair, where it connects to the seat, you can see a little teeny tiny bit of natural wood. With use, the chair has started to separate. We are going to add more glue to the holes the dowels go in by using a syringe. Please use common sense! If your chair isn’t sturdy, make it so! If you can’t, don’t use it for people to sit in… swing, or otherwise!

Chair Swing3

Chair Swing1

Weaving the rope…

You may want to use a different method of weaving your rope through your chair. If yours has arms, you might thread the rope through them. With ours, we centered the holes between the sides of the chair and the end of the boards. Mr. Matrimony did say that the way the inspiration chair was “roped” may not work if someone leans back. He thought weaving the rope through the back of the chair would be sturdy. If you don’t think your chair is sturdy, don’t use it as a swing! Before you even sit in it, make sure it’s strong enough for human use. To leave the most possible strength we could in the rope, we used one continuous piece. It took a couple of tries to get it “just so”, but when it was finished, we felt it was safe.

Chair Swing Knot

When I sit in our chair, it does feel very sturdy. I can actually swing in it! It’s great!!!

Fisherman's Knot

Mr. Matrimony used a “Fisherman’s Knot” for our swing. He thinks it’s the best because as the knots pull on each other, they add strength to both knots, from both ends of the rope. You might want to search the internet to find which knot will be best for where your chair will be. If you are tying it around a tree limb, for instance, you may want a different type of knot. I would ask someone at the hardware store. They really are a wealth of information.

Pip
Pippaloo, enjoying the new swing

You should know…
When I write out my directions, I’m not the most technical thinking person. What you read, and even what you see in my pictures may not make any sense at all! My point is, if I can do it, YOU CAN TOO!!! Just give it a go! Don’t let lack of expertize hold you back. What’s the worst that will happen? You’ll have a really cute chair swing no one can sit in? Fine! Make this one a planter and start over. Just give it a go. Be BOLD!

The hardest part about crafting is starting.

How many Pinterest Boards are you going to fill up with ideas before you actually DO them? I even started a board I titled, “Pinterest Ideas I Actually Did!” I challenge you to start one too. Please share with me when you do!

wpid-PhotoGrid_1393344459392.jpg