Thursday, August 29, 2013

Room Swap-Part 1

I wrote last year about wanting to switching rooms with my daughter when she left for the Navy.  She left in July and a few weeks later I was working on getting settled in.  I had to fit all of my furniture and crafting supplies in her closet and on one side of her room.  Her stuff just got piled up on her bed so I could get the room I was moving her stuff in ready.  It was a tight squeeze and a bit of nightmare.

room swap

You can see here how I pulled up the carpet in her old room as I went along in the process.  The carpet in the room I moved her into is in reasonable shape.  Just shampooing the carpet, patching walls and some paint and I was on my way to working on my new art space.





I have always wanted to paint my daughter’s room pink.  She wasn’t having any of it-she had wanted black in her old room and that was not going to happen.  I had compromised and painted her furniture black instead.  Well since I wanted a pink craft room I decided to test the color out in her space.  She doesn’t have to love it since she will only have to live in it when she visits.  I picked out a bubblegum pink and got busy.  When I moved her black dresser in it just look too heavy and dreary so I stripped all the old paint off of it and found some hot pink spray paint.  I left the knobs black along with the mirror that goes along with it.  All of her black accents look pretty good.  I’m happy with it.   I just wanted her to have a pretty space to live in when she visits.

In her old room I had to work my way around and remove the old carpeting.  I know I want a hard surface flooring in there.  My budget does not allow for that right now and I just didn’t want to live with carpeting that was past it’s expiration date.  After I got that done I was able to arrange what I had into a workable area.

room swap 

I kept my eyes open on craigslist for another desk or table.  In the meantime I transformed the closet into a book nook/art gallery.  I love it, but I certainly miss all the storage and the ability to close the door on a mess.


closet transformation



I continued to work around the room counter clockwise.  My husband was out of town a lot (lucky him), and I didn’t want to push it too hard doing this all by myself (he did help me out with the shelving on the sides ).  To give better support to the shelves on the sides of the closet we used 1x4’s screwed into the wall studs.  Unfortunately the studs didn’t quite line up where my shelves did, and since I thought it would look awkward to have the support sticking out we carried it across the back of the closet.  I wasn’t thrilled with idea of having white stripes going across, but in the name of progress went along with our plan.


closet transformation

I had a aha moment and decided to add another 1x4 across with some molding to make a narrow shelf space to display books, art and whatever.  Since this wasn’t a planned feature  I had to make the best of the corners as I could.  I added narrow crown molding to the bottom of the 1x4-it’s not very noticeable, but it did make a difference in the overall appearance.

closet transformation

After I worked my way around the room I finished reupholstering my two chairs.  It’s been over 10 years of unhappy fabric choices and giving up on the whole process.  I’m not thrilled with my fabric choices this time either-but hey-they are done!  Someone better than me will have the job next time.

closet transformation

I am still living with the subfloors until we can afford to put flooring in here.  I may paint them in the meantime….just not anytime soon.

If you like this post you may also like:

Bathroom Makeover

Comments appreciated and welcomed.

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Garden Platform Cart Project

While browsing Pinterest for shed ideas I came across this pin of a garden cart that can be used as a platform.  I hate dragging out the ladder outside when something is just out of my reach and wobbling around on land that is not level.  There were adjustments made to the original plans-I just don’t have access to the specific wheels used.  I really love it and it only took an afternoon to build it and paint it.

platform garden cart

It took one sheet of 1/2” plywood and 3 2x4’s-we chose to use pressure treated lumber for this project.  We also picked up a couple of tires from Harbor Freight.  It was just a matter of cutting everything to size and screwing it together with a couple of lag bolts thrown in for good measure.

platform garden cartplatform garden cartplatform garden cartplatform garden cart

After making a template and transferring it to the plywood we cut out the handles per the instructions.  We agreed that the handles would not stand up to the weight of this cart.  I actually prefer the replacement handles for a wheelbarrow that we bought instead.  We were going to cut them down to size until my daughter held it up the entire length of the cart-I liked the way it look and I think it will give the handles more strength.

platform garden cart

We need to do some more tweaking to get it level and more stable.  The wheels need to be spaced farther apart.  The brace we put in on the handle side needs to be removed as we keep hitting our shins on it using it.  It is very heavy and a bit unwieldy at times, but it has saved our backs and been very useful in our yard.

platform garden cart

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Ongoing Shed Project

Scrap Wood Garden Bench

Ongoing Shed Project

Back in June before my daughter left for Navy basic training we decided it was time to start planning and building a shed to clear out all of the garden paraphernalia out of the garage.

The daunting part was getting permission from the HOA and permit from the city.  The guidelines were not bad after we made a call to find out what we needed to do.  Since we are just DIYers reading the property blueprints and trying to figure out where the property line is was a bit of a headache for us.  Our property is a pie shape butted up against three neighbors with a t-box behind the properties.  Since we couldn’t figure out the scale on the blueprints we had to use the dimensions given and measure off of our house so we would be well within the guidelines set by the HOA and city. 

Since all the properties on the golf course are open with no fencing we have to show what the structure will look like from the t-box, neighbors and front street.  We roughly marked out the area with posts and string.  My husband had to stand next to it so I could take pictures, otherwise the area marked out was not visible. 

It’s an area that was thick with vegetation.  The former owners had planted Azaleas, Camellias and other perennials.   It is also home to three good sized Oak trees.  We mostly ignored it when we first moved in.  It was too hard to move through.  Hurricane Ivan cleared a lot of it out and we lost a very large Oak tree in the back.  It continued on it’s own.  A few times a year my husband would work his way in a few feet and clear stuff back with the weed eater.


We got our approval and started clearing vegetation to make way for the foundation.  All together I think it took us about 6 days in all to clear the entire area of weeds, vines and four Azaleas that were in the way of where we wanted to build.

We mixed in some fun like babysitting my grandson.  I think my daughter probably misses him the most and he doesn’t quite understand where his Auntie Evie is.


Both of my youngest kids have helped out with this project.  My daughter and I did most of the clearing with a final push from my husband towards the end.  Invaluable help and the scars and memories will last forever.

After watching quite a few videos on foundations for sheds my husband and I decided to go with one demonstrated by Jon Peters from YouTube.

We found our four corners for our 4x4’s and squared them off using the 345 method.  Next we attached our 2x6’s and leveled them.shed foundation

I’m really condensing what we did-the video was a great tool and his directions and guidance are superior to what I could restate here.  We cut the 4x4’s level with the 2x6’s.

shed foundation

Next came the lag bolts.

shed foundation

Even though we are using pressure treated lumber we decided to keep the area covered with a tarp to help keep the area dry.  It’s a good thing we did because the rains started without abatement after we got the foundation finished.

shed foundation

Time for the joists.  We took a mini break and built this handy garden cart-another Pinterest inspired project.  It needs some tweaking after using it, but it really has turned into a handy item.

shed foundation

2x6’s, 16 on center with some blocking to follow.  We staggered the blocking to make it easier to attach to the joists.

shed foundation

Then it was time for my baby girl to go. 

navy basic training

She wore her tattered, paint stained shorts to leave in.  I wasn’t happy about it at the time, but writing this post it warms my heart that she did. 

My husband and I finished up the foundation with pressure treated plywood.  That’s where the project stopped for awhile.  The rains started and my husband needed a break so his broken rib would heal.  A final day of playing in the pool and too much roughhousing from my daughter. 

We have four walls framed.  The two larger walls are under the tarp outside and the two smaller ones are inside.  The final dimensions will be 12’x8’ which is plenty of room for our garden equipment.  We need to make a few more decisions before we lift the walls in place.  I sure wish my baby girl was here to help us with it.