Benchmarked!

Happy Tuesday, Folks!  I hope everyone had a safe and relaxing weekend. As mentioned in my last post, ours was a little different… though with a few nice surprises.  For example, if you follow me on Facebook you may have seen my excitement on Sunday when I woke to discover that my revamped foyer cabinets (aka: my brightey whiteys) were featured on Tatortots and Jello!   I was so amazingly flattered that they chose my children cabinets to sit alongside such greatness.  You can check it out (along with the other awesome projects) at this link.  And yep!  After looking at all of the big, beautiful, bright photos in that wonderful post… and then my teeny, tiny pic…  I’ll definitely be incorporating larger pictures on the blog from now on.  Ya live, ya learn.  🙂

Anyhoo, the other day, I was minding my own business when I had another sudden bout of inspiration (sort of like with my bamboo light fixture).  Ya see, we’ve had a little eyesore issue that I’ve been trying to contend with.   Brace yourself.

This was the view through our bedroom door…

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Attractive, right??  We used to have a cute little shelving unit in this space, but once we adopted our new grown-up nightstands, I moved it out.  It just didn’t work anymore.  And what was left was an ugly cord and blankness.  I really just stuck the blue vase over there to get it out of the way. I decided that some sort of bench would be a good solution for the space, and absolutely fell in love with yet another inanimate object the last time I was at Target…

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It was perfect!  A smaller, bold pattern to contrast our larger-patterned, muted bedding.  The size was right.   I liked the legs.   But I wasn’t willing to pay a hundred bucks for it.

So, I chose to create my own version on the cheap.   Ya see, my moment of inspiration occurred in the instant that I remembered that we had this ottoman in our attic…

I raced up there in a moment of determination and brought it down in a haze of glory.  I thought it would work well.  It was small, square-cushioned, and free.  A good blank slate.  😉

I started by removing the cover (my mother-in-law recovered it years ago with the brown microsuede)…

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…and discovered ducks!!  Huh…

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Then, I used this spray paint and gave the wood legs a few thin, even coats (check out some general spray-painting tips in this post of yore )…

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…Which left this…

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Yeeeahhh… I didn’t even bother to cover the fabric.  Alas, there will be no ducks in my future.

I found the fabric below at Hobby Lobby and just knew it was “The One”.   I thought it was similar to the Target bench fabric in the lines and feel, but was slightly more graphic, which I was all for.   It was $8.99/yard and I had a 50% off coupon which brought it to around 5 bucks including tax for the one yard I purchased.

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Now, as many of you know… a seamstress, I am not.   However, I’m trying to grow my skills, so I figured, no time like the present! And then I procrastinated. Out of fear.  But only for a little bit.  I decided to pin and sew along each of the corners to create darts of sorts (if there’s a correct term for this, please let me know).   I started the process, and then as I got to pinning my second corner, I realized that the fabric was the wrong way… so I flipped it over, wrong side up and started again.  My corners looked like this once pinned…

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Then, I retrieved Dusty (aka: my sewing machine), and simply sewed straight(ish) lines right over my pins.   I turned my slipcover right side out and tried it on for size…

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To my sheer and utter amazement, it didn’t look too bad.  Sure, its not perfect.  It has a few puckers and curvy lines, but ya know what??  I’LL TAKE IT!!!!  I removed the cover, trimmed off the excess material…

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… and slid the cover back on my ottoman.   I trimmed the bottom fabric, leaving about an inch of excess and folded it under so that the fabric would be neat around the legs…

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Then, I used my trusty staple gun to secure the fabric using the method outlined in this tutorial for recovering seat cushions…

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This next part, I have no pictures for, unfortunately.  But I’ll just say this… anyone who can secure embroidery tacks in a straight line deserves a medal (or a talk show)!  I spent ages (and sacrificed many an innocent tack) trying to hammer them in straight around the legs.   I’m happy with how they turned out in the end, but the process was no joke.  So, without further adieu, here’s the final result…

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And here he is in his new home….

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Our doorway view is much cuter now in my humble opinion.

So, here’s the cost breakdown for this project…

Ottoman: Already owned

Spray paint: Already owned

Fabric: $5

Embroidery Tacks: $2.50

TOTAL SPENT: $7.50

So, yeah.  I’m definitely satisfied with this project.  I think I actually like my bench better than the Target version, which says a lot, ’cause that Target bench is the cat’s meow.  I like the bolder fabric, but that the overall bench has a similar feeling to my inspiration. And the embroidery tacks… Worth every frustration. They add a little rustic twist and contrast the gold legs, which now tie in to Drex’s brass accents on the opposite side of the room. And.I.sewed. And.liked.it. Weird.

So, what have you guys got going on?? Any inexpensive knock-offs happening in your neck of the woods??

 

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Linked up to: Home Stories A to Z, Home Coming, The DIY Dreamer, I Heart Nap Time, Natasha in Oz, Burlap and Babies, Lines Across, Tip Junkie

Put A Bird On It
TDC Before and After

 

Lisa’s Guest Room Makeover: Day Two

Remember my friend Lisa?

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We started her guest room makeover a few months ago in one action-packed day (which you can read about here). Basically, we went a little backwards for the sake of usability. That day, we cleaned, decluttered, shopped, figured out a more functional layout and assembled the room.  Thus, the room could immediately accommodate guests.  This time around, we painted the walls.  Woo-hoo!   I’m that weird breed of human who loves to paint, so this was right up my alley.

The plan was to paint the walls a deep grey and Lisa happened to have almost a full gallon of Glidden’s Seal Grey on hand (which she’d used in her bathroom). So, we went for it.  Her boyfriend helped out immensely by moving all the furniture to the middle of the room. A task which would’ve taken us forever, literally took him minutes.  Conveniently for me, it was done by the time I arrived. (Bonus!)  He also helped us replace the furniture once we were done. And boy, were we glad he was there. I don’t think I was prepared to take on that beast of a piano again. Not that I was much of a help the first time around.  Anyways, I’m getting ahead of myself as per usual… Backtrack to ‘the furniture was moved to the middle of the room’ part…  And go… So, we removed all of the outlet covers and got to work. We opted not to tape off the trim and windows for the sake of saving time.  After many moons (and lots and lots of practice), edging freehand has become quicker and easier for me than spending forever-and-a-grandma taping only to discover unsightly paint bleeds later.

Here are a few ‘in progress’ shots…

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I cut in and Lisa rolled. It took us about 3 hours from start to finish.

Once we were done painting, we decided to take on the piano bench as well…

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The fabric on top had seen better days and the base was a bit scratched up and possessed more of a red undertone than the piano, so it didn’t quite mesh.  This little guy had terrific bones, though, so he was definitely worth keeping. We roughed up the base with 220 grit sand paper, then used Rustoleum Universal spray paint in Satin White, and gave this baby several thin, even coats….

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We recovered the the cushion with some of the same fabric that I used to update this tray (sorry, forgot to take pics of this part)….

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I purchased a quarter yard from Walmart for 99 cents and thanked my lucky stars that it was the perfect size to recover this small bench.  I utilized the same method for recovering this cushion that I described in detail when I recovered my eight dollar chair seats.

And here’s where we ended up….

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Cute, huh? I just love it. It’s quirky, fun, and brings some turquoise and feisty-ness over to this side of the room.

With our little bench complete, we reassembled the room, ironed the curtains, hung those babies up, and then I went mad snapping pictures.  And without further adieu, some before-and-after shots for your viewing pleasure:

The music side of the room started here….

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After Day One (sorry for the smaller shots in this post… I forgot to shoot a few angles while I was there, so Lisa sent me these on her phone) …

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After Day Two…

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Obviously the red painting had to go. It just didn’t jive with the rest of the room. This blue painting works perfectly though. And our adorable piano bench adds a punch of personality as well.  I added another quarter yard of  fabric as a makeshift table scarf for the storage bench to bring a touch of black and white pattern to this side of the room.  It balances the graphic bedspread on the opposite side really well.  We still need some artwork for above the storage bench, but that’s a project for another day.

The bedroom side of the room started here….

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Day One…

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Day Two…

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This side of the room stayed pretty much the same except for the wall color. But the deep grey tone makes all the difference. It really allows the curtains and bedding to pop and the room seem so much cozier in general.

Lastly, the dresser side started here…

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Day one…

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Day Two…

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Again, only the paint color is different, but it sure complements the deep walnut dresser. We still need to accessorize and hang some artwork, but it’s definitely a step in the right direction.

Here’s a wider view so you can see how the room ties together a bit more…

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And the obligatory, proud-of-our-progress shots…

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I just love paint. It’s amazing how something so cheap and easy packs such a wallop. Anyways, we’re almost there, but still have a bit more to do.

So, for Day Three of this makeover we’ll be…

  • revamping this ceiling fan…

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  • creating some art for the walls
  • adding some accessories

I’m not sure when we’ll complete these things, but we’ll get ‘er done for sure at some point.  And of course, I’ll post about it when that time comes.  So, does anybody else have painting projects going on right now?