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DIY : 3rd times a charm??

20 Mar

This armoire.

This armoire is driving me nuts.

Originally white and distressed (I can’t find the before picture to save my life).

I decided I wanted some gold metallic in my life.

So I painted it Martha Stewart’s Vintage Gold.

martha stewart vintage gold metallic paint

I turned out okay.  Nothing great.  Didn’t set off any fireworks.

Definitely not one of my favorite pieces.

So yesterday, I decided it needed to be yellow.  And beat up and rubbed up with some stain.  And given some new crystal knobs.

Here’s a glimpse.  One coat of paint.  I’m a lazy painter…leave it in the room is my motto.

I’m digging it.

But my husbands gonna kill me.

I’ll share the final product next week.



Our Mexican Makeover

15 Dec

Last week, I shared our big Mexican secret.


It’s a quite a pretty pad now but it wasn’t always so.

Here are the before (and after) pictures of our Mexican property before we bought it.  I know we are a little biased but we personally think the transformation is significant.   And we are especially proud of it since it was accomplished with very little money.

Parts of it looked quite crazy before.  There was bright blue paint and blue trim work everywhere.  The blue paint could have been a nice affect but what made it terrible was the fact that it was applied poorly.  It was blotchy and didn’t have straight lines which really stood out against the white walls.  And there was a little too much of it everywhere – even in random places.  The prior owners went blue crazy!  The kitchen counter was painted blue.

The stairs…

There was blue paint trim work under the couch.

Blue trim in the hallways.

Even a blue wall and blue trim work in the bathrooms.

And blue wasn’t the only color problem.  There was also this very very very yellow room.

Despite these unpleasant paint colors, the property really appealed to us.  We overlooked most of the colorful flaws because we realized it had great bones including thick cement walls, a marble and stone flooring, nice tiled bathrooms and showers, good cabinets and even built-in cement furniture.

Since we used our entire life savings to buy the place we had very little money to renovate it, that required doing everything on the cheap.  The fact that it had great bones meant we didn’t have to do any major construction and could get away with simple cosmetic changes.  All that was required was paint, decorating and doing a little cleaning and minor repair work.

The first thing we did was paint.  The cement walls were in perfect condition but needed to be repainted.  Since the exterior of the home is vibrant white and very Moorish looking,

we decided to go with the same concept for the interior…very white, very chic.

Once all the blue trim and blue and yellow walls were painted white, it was a major transformation.

Our next project was to replace all the electrical outlets and controllers. Since the home is located about 50 feet from the ocean and is exposed to tropical weather, the electrical outlets and switches yellowed terribly.  For a few bucks each, we changed every single yellow switch and outlet with bright white ones.  Now that they are white, they are hardly noticed on the wall.

Furniture and decor was easy because we bought almost nothing.  The home came with furniture owned by the prior owner which was awesome!   (It’s typical in Mexican home sales that most the furniture and art are included in the sale of the home).  Half the furniture in the house was made of cement.  I thought that was pretty amazing. I love the cement couches, cement bed frame and nightstands.  We never have to worry about them breaking or getting damaged from the tropical humidity.

All we needed to do was have the couch cushions upholstered.  Everything was transformed white.

From this.

To this.

We also had these Mexican equipale chairs changed from forest green…

…to clean white.

A local artisan did this upholstery work for us. It was done for less money than we could have even purchased the fabric for. They did such a skilled job that all the couch cushions and even the equipale furniture looks new.  The fabric is a special thick high quality canvas fabric that can be used outdoors and is resistant to stain.  So no worries about the white!

Then my mother-in-law came up a brilliant idea that made a large impact!  Since it was difficult to ship objects to Mexico and very expensive to buy them there, she suggested we let people vacation at our place for free as long as they brought items we needed.   All they had to do was stuff extra things in their luggage.  That worked out beneficial for both our friends and us!!  We had friends who enjoyed a great vacations and in turn we received much needed items. This is how we received most of our modern kitchen appliances including a toaster oven and coffee maker.  Some people were very generous and brought us other items including pretty decorations, nice rugs and towels.  It was genius plan and made the quickest advancement into getting our place looking and operating like a real home.

Much was accomplished by simply removing art that didn’t fit the new decor and rearanging other items to different rooms.  We moved chairs that were crowded in the living room to provide additional seating options in the bedrooms.  We also removed cluttered art from the living room and hallways and mixed it up in the bedrooms.  We tried to leave everything very white with simple pops of color here and there.

The only indulgence we made was this gorgeous table.  I found it at a local furniture store in Zihuatanejo. It is one of the most cherished things I’ve ever owned.  It looks and feels like wood but is actually made from a plant root.  It is a masterpiece and was only $200 so I don’t feel so guilty.  It’s something we will probably always keep forever.

It’s the easiest decor makeover we’ve ever done!

Here are some side by side shots of some of the rooms before and after:

Master Bathroom


Living Room

Master Bedroom

Second Bedroom


Click here to see more pictures or here to travel and stay at our home in Ixtapa-Zihuatanejo.

November already?

1 Nov

Is it really November today?  Wait…where did October go?

The fact it is already November scares me.  It is especially daunting because I turn 40 this month.  Eek!

If October was a fast blur to you too…here is a recap of some of the fun DIY projects we featured last month.



and don’t forget this great picture hanging tip using toothpaste!

Well…see you in November!

Silver saves the day

25 Oct

You probably remember the hard work that was required refinishing this desk…

and the ugly red/orange paint debacle I shared with you yesterday.

But on to happier times…

This desk that once saw tragedy is now a beautiful piece of work – in silver.

Martha Stewart Precious Metals Paint in the shade Silver Leaf finished off with Valspar antiquing glaze in Asphaltum.

Miraculously, the glass top survived our move from Los Angeles.

Here she sits alone in my office that will be decorated soon.

I just love her.

She’s a beautiful deep silver and the antiquing gives emphasis to all her curves and features…ornate feet, round sides and deep grooves.

This room is a little sitting area attached to our master bedroom. It will serve as my office and also as my dressing room. I can’t wait to blog away on my laptop here….or maybe also use her as make-up vanity. I can sit here like a queen for a day and powder my nose.

This area is still a blank canvas and needs lots of work.  I haven’t really done much other than hang two pictures.  So much to do including finding a chair and decorating more. I am thinking of making it very glam with a gallery of large ornate frames on a wall and maybe adding a fluffy rug.

If you are interested in using the Martha Stewart Precious Metals paint, it was a dream to work with in terms of quality and rich color choices.

However the metallic paint easily leaves brush and roller marks. I used a small dense foam roller designed to leave minimal marks and still had to be very cautious.

I found it best to use exceptionally thin layers to help reduce marks.

So I am dying to know…what do you think?!  Do you like the silver?

Annie Sloan’s Rocks

11 Oct

Thanks to one of my BFF’s…I received a can of this for my birthday:

annie sloans chalk paint paris grey

And both of our husbands laughed at the thought of giving a can of paint for a birthday gift.

Boys.  They just don’t understand the value of good paint.

And Angie and I laughed at how times have changed in the gift-giving department….long gone are the days of a bottle of wine and fancy jewelry.

We want paint.  Annie Sloan’s Chalk Paint to be specific.

I love how Angie knew that paint would be the perfect gift.

And she has a birthday around the corner…hmmmm, I wonder what she’s getting from me??  :)

I’ve never used chalk paint before so I decided to start small.

This Pottery Barn mirror on my mantel was once knotty pine…then I painted it black several years ago.

It’s a beautiful mirror…gorgeous, heavy, huge.

But the black mirror on the black mantel is too much…and I’ve wanted to do something else but haven’t put much thought into it.

And in steps the chalk paint.

paris grey annie sloans chalk paint pottery barn mirror

Totally awesome to paint with.  Easy to use.

Dries super fast with no brush strokes.

And distresses like a dream.


I loved the way the paint looked after distressing.

But it was a little to pale for the living room.  My wall color is pretty light in there and I have very dark wood floors so I really wanted a contrast on the mirror.

So…loving the Paris Grey…and needing a punch of something…I dry brushed just a touch of Mermaids Net over the Paris Grey.

And distressed a bit more.

I am absolutely in love with the combination of the Paris Grey, Mermaids Net, and the original black peeking through.


Added our sweet little gold and orange pumpkin…


I love it.  Love, love, love it.

Did I say I love it??

Kudos to  Annie Sloan’s and to my BFF Angie for the can of paint.

I already know the next piece getting a coat of Paris Grey!  Do you have anything you’ve painted…and repainted?  We’d love to see!!



Silver & Dark Wood :: Two Toned Table

6 Oct

Silver & Dark Wood :: Two Toned Table

Now that Carrie and I live in the same state, we can do fun things together like refinishing furniture.  When we visited our friend Cory the other week in Dallas, we took some time to help her out with her dining room table.  Cory had previously painted the table silver but was unhappy with it.

The problems:

1) A silver table that didn’t match dark brown chairs with beige upholstery.

2) Additionally, the silver paint was lacking something. It was a dull shade, almost gray with a very monochromatic look.  The paint didn’t emphasize the details on the table and looked bland.

The solutions:

1) Make the table two-toned with a dark top to create a more cohesive look with the chairs and

2) Use glaze to give the dull silver paint a more striking effect and make the details on the table more visible and defined.

Beautiful now isn’t it?

Here’s how we did it…

First, the table was prepped by taping the edge of the table top.

Gel remover was sponge painted to the top surface.

Scraped off paint.


After all the top paint was removed, the surface was sanded to help the stain to adhere.

Dark stain was applied with sponge brushes.

While the stain was setting, we started working on the glaze.  We bought this fancy glazing brush on a whim.  However, a good ole cut up t-shirt ended up working much better.

We had Cory help us beat up the table a little more with a knife. Scraping off some of the paint helped add character to the table.

Glazed was applied all over the bottom of the table and very liberally in all groves and detailed lines.

The excess stain was wiped off the top.

Here are the results – a pretty two-toned table!

The glaze really made an impact.  Here is another picture of the Before.

Here’s the After.

The glaze brought out the silver tones in the paint and emphasized the detailed features that previously went unnoticed.

Carrie and I are going to start taking on interior design and furniture restoration jobs soon. I guess you could say Cory was our first client!!

However, considering she paid us with goat cheese, wine and petit fours…

…maybe not?! Oh well, that  meant more to us anyway!

What do you think of the two-toned look?  Do you have anything you want to refinish the same way?





Check out these fun blogs for amazing inspiration!

Between Naps on the PorchDIY ShowoffDomestically SpeakingFinding FabulousFunky Junk InteriorsHouse of HepworthsMiss Mustard SeedMy Backyard EdenPerfectly ImperfectPrimitive & ProperRemodelaholicSAS InteriorsShabby NestWhipperberryToday’s Creative BlogThe Thrifty HomeSavvy Southern StyleSome Day CraftsEisy MorganGreen Door Designs,  At Home with KHome Stories A2Z



White Fireplace Conversion

14 Aug

I used to think painting brick was a sin but I think I’ve changed my mind on that.  Before we moved out of our house in Los Angeles, I stared for months at our living room and something just seemed off.  I couldn’t quite put my finger on it.

At first I thought it was the green paint my husband and I loved and painted on the walls when we first moved in.  The room just appeared old fashioned and something wasn’t meshing with our furniture and decor.

Then after seeing this white fireplace, I realized the orange-red brick was throwing everything off.

It is now white and lovely!

By the way, the white looking specks inside the fireplace aren’t paint.  It doesn’t appear well in the picture but it is a candle stand with white candles.

This project was one of the easiest and quick fixes I have tackled in a while.  It just took a little bit of white paint and a little bit of my time.  10 minutes to paint the first coat and another 10 minutes for the second coat.  Since I already had leftover paint, the cost was $0.

What do you think?  Do you like?  Would you paint brick?





Check out these fun blogs for amazing inspiration!

Between Naps on the PorchDIY ShowoffDomestically SpeakingFinding FabulousFunky Junk InteriorsHouse of HepworthsMiss Mustard SeedMy Backyard EdenPerfectly ImperfectPrimitive & ProperRemodelaholicSAS InteriorsShabby NestWhipperberryToday’s Creative BlogThe Thrifty HomeSavvy Southern StyleSome Day CraftsEisy MorganGreen Door Designs,  At Home with KHome Stories A2Z


Watching Grass Grow (Backyard Before & After)

1 Jul

Watching Grass Grow (Backyard Before & After)

I know this post is not an exciting DIY project but…I am so giddy about this transformation, I can’t stop myself from sharing it with you!

For the last year, our backyard looked like this:


And now it looks like THIS!


Beautiful isn’t it?

We put off the idea of getting grass for an entire year because we thought it would cost thousands.  And we thought it was something we could do ourselves.  We actually tried to grow our own grass with seeds but the attempt it was unsuccessful.  The grass never grew well and the weeds dominated.

What we didn’t realize was that our neighbor’s tree was covering a majority of our back yard and cutting out most of the sun exposure during the day – which was probably the main reason our attempts at growing our own grass were futile. So before installing our new grass, our gardner removed all the branches from our neighbor’s tree covering our yard (with our neighbor’s approval of course).

That’s a lot of branches – all from one giant tree!  The tree had never been trimmed before.  Going forward, we need to keep the branches short before they completely cover over our yard again.  The remaining branches still protrude on our property, as you can see from the leaves that fall on our new grass — but they don’t completely envelop it like before (and now sufficient sun can shine down to our grass).

The entire project cost quite a bit but no where near what we originally imagined.  The pallets of “Marathon” type grass cost $450 (.45 cents a square foot plus tax) and labor to remove the weeds from our yard and install the new grass was $300.  $750 Total.  We had not budgeted this expense this month and somehow got talked into it by our gardner….

And I am so glad we listened!  It’s gorgeous. And smells great.  I love walking in it and this guy LOVES it!


The process was pretty quick but not very easy for the gardening crew.  The gardening crew first removed all the weeds by hand and raked up the yard loosening the soil.

The grass squares were delivered on pallets in our driveway.

Then the guys carried them to the backyard and started laying out the individual squares of grass.

And now we have this gorgeousness…


I LOVE a good DIY project but this was one I was glad to let the professionals handle.  I am thankful our gardner insisted on providing us an estimate which was the catalyst in making us decide to start the project.  Even though we didn’t have this expense budgeted, we luckily made it work. I wish we would have done this a year ago but lesson learned.

Have you ever had a project you wanted to complete but thought it was too expensive?





Check out these fun blogs for amazing inspiration!

Between Naps on the PorchDIY ShowoffDomestically SpeakingFinding FabulousFunky Junk InteriorsHouse of HepworthsMiss Mustard SeedMy Backyard EdenPerfectly ImperfectPrimitive & ProperRemodelaholicSAS InteriorsShabby NestWhipperberry,Today’s Creative BlogThe Thrifty HomeSavvy Southern StyleSome Day CraftsEisy MorganGreen Door Designs,  At Home with K,Home Stories A2Z



DIY :: Making furniture new again…with stain. (Before & After Outdoor Patio Set)

30 Jun

DIY :: Making furniture new again…with stain. (Before & After Outdoor Patio Set)

The last few weeks I saw about a billion things on craigslist being given away – for FREE.  Not junk either.  Great amazing things including a fabulous ornate Spanish desk, industrial vintage factory cart and huge 8 foot farmhouse table.  FREE!!!! Can you believe??  I whined and sulked because both my husband and I own cars that have almost zero hauling capacity. Neither one of our back seats fold down which means our trunk space hauling area is the size of a peanut.

So..all those amazing things that were free on craigslist were out of my reach.   I contemplated renting a truck or paying movers but the cost of that wasn’t in my budget right now.  And it kind of defeats the purpose of getting it for free, ya’ know?

I soon quit whining because I realized this obstacle was a blessing in disguise.  There are so many home improvement and old unfinished projects left yet to complete at our house.  My garage is stuffed with old supplies that need to be used up along with half finished furniture.  Not to mention about 50 home improvement projects we need to finish. I should be focusing on that instead of stuffing my garage with more projects.

This teak patio set is one of those old projects.  I got this from craigslist at least one year ago and since that time, it has sat ugly and unused on a patio area located on the right side of our home.

The table set and patio area are so hideous we never spend any time there except walking briskly by as we pass through.  Also check out the fence in the background – yuck isn’t it? Well, I’ll tell you more about that later too.

Welcome stain to the rescue!


It’s been a while since I used stain and I forget how miraculously it can bring new life to dead pieces.

I had almost a full can of stain leftover from another project – Varathane “Early American”.  A little stain goes a long way and this small can was just enough to cover the table and all four chairs with almost two coats. I painted one thick coat and then painted a selective second coat only on areas that needed to be touched up.

Before staining, the entire patio set was given a quick sand with this sanding pad.  The sanding job was so quick it took less than 10 minutes.  I wanted to lightly roughen up the surface to help the stain adhere.


After sanding, the dust was brushed off with a small hand held brush and then wiped off with a damp rag to help ensure the smaller particles were removed.

Next the stain was applied very liberally with a foam paint brush.  The stain was layered on thick because the wood on the patio set was very dry and I wanted the stain to soak in well.  Applying the stain was such a rewarding experience because within minutes glorious results were achieved.


It is shocking how new the old wood now looks.

Here is a before and after comparison of the first chair that was completed.  Such a difference, don’t you agree?

After staining, the the entire set was painted with polyurethane outdoor sealer.  I never use sealer anymore for indoor furniture (I prefer oil and wax).  I think sealer is a little outdated and changes the color and effect of the stain.  However, on outdoor items sealer is a necessity. Without sealant, the outdoor elements like sun and rain will weather and wear out the furniture’s surface faster.

I am so glad I started working on all my old projects. My house is really coming together now! I have completed so much and even stained that fence that was in the background (which I will share the “how-to” with you soon!).  Maybe soon, I’ll start on that closet full of old sewing projects!

Do you have old projects you have been piling up?





Check out these fun blogs for amazing inspiration!

Between Naps on the PorchDIY ShowoffDomestically SpeakingFinding FabulousFunky Junk InteriorsHouse of HepworthsMiss Mustard SeedMy Backyard EdenPerfectly ImperfectPrimitive & ProperRemodelaholicSAS InteriorsShabby NestWhipperberry,Today’s Creative BlogThe Thrifty HomeSavvy Southern StyleSome Day CraftsEisy MorganGreen Door Designs,  At Home with K,Home Stories A2Z



DIY :: Frame Your Bathroom Mirror

12 May

DIY :: Frame Your Bathroom Mirror

Hi everyone!  I must say I have had a pretty hectic week…but finding the time to write this DIY was very therapeutic for me.  I love sharing ideas, little projects around my home, and hopefully helping you with a inspiration of your own!

We moved into our current home about 4 years and I absolutely looove it.  We’ve owned 2 other homes…and I can honestly say I never felt like those were ‘mine’ for some reason.  The walls were left unpainted and I never took any time to make those homes personal.  They were builder grade…nothing fancy…and it showed.

But the moment we walked into this house…I knew.  It was mine.  I saw beyond the orange-red kitchen and pickled pink cabinets, the laminate flooring that echoed, and the Roman column wallpaper in the master bath.  It needed some work and I couldn’t wait to get started.

I will share alot of before and afters with you soon but first wanted to show you how I framed the bathroom mirror in my children’s bathroom.

I do not have a before-before picture of the gold track lighting and olive green paint on the walls…but you can imagine it.

And I do not have alot of step by step of the actual cutting of the wood, etc because I had no idea I would one day have a blog about design…who knew?

But I will happily answer any questions you have because it was really so simple…and I completed the project entirely on my own.  Doesn’t someone out there have a ‘I made it without my hubby!’ motto?

Here is a picture of the bathroom before the mirror was framed:

framed bathroom mirror

You can see I replaced the gold track lights with fixtures from Lowe’s for about $35 each and painted the walls Restoration Hardware’s Silver Sage….in my opinion, the prettiest color on the planet.

Measure the length and width of your mirror.  Then head over to Lowe’s or Home Depot…

I purchased molding (or casing) from Lowe’s…I wanted a thick molding to add some character to the room.

Lowe’s has a cutting station and a very nice gentleman will happily cut the molding for you…just add about 1/2 inch to the length and width to allow for cutting at a 45 degree angle.

lowes cutting station

Using a mitre saw (or an electric saw if you are cool like that) which has angles already there for you…measure your length, your 45 degree angle, mark with a pencil, then place in the mitre box…and start working your arm muscles.

You need to mark which direction your angle will go for each corner.  Do this with all four pieces of molding.

After each piece was cut, I painted and distressed the molding black and let dry overnight.

You will need mirror glue…also from Lowe’s…to attach each piece of molding to the 4 sides of the mirror.

Add some chalk to the corners of the molding, if needed, and touch up with your paint.

And that’s it my friends!

Seriously the best thing to you can do for your bathroom!  I also framed out the mirror in our master bath with much thicker molding and it is gorgeous!

Roll your mouse over the picture to see the before and after:

I also painted the cabinets black in this bathroom and added brushed nickel knobs from Lowe’s…I think they were $1 a piece.

The entire project was less than $100, mainly because I bought new light fixtures, and worth every penny!

Have you ever framed out your bathroom mirrors?  We’d love to see!


Check out these fun blogs for amazing inspiration!

Between Naps on the PorchDIY ShowoffDomestically SpeakingFinding FabulousFunky Junk InteriorsHouse of HepworthsMiss Mustard SeedMy Backyard EdenPerfectly ImperfectPrimitive & ProperRemodelaholicSAS InteriorsShabby NestWhipperberry,Today’s Creative BlogThe Thrifty HomeSavvy Southern StyleSome Day CraftsEisy MorganGreen Door Designs,  At Home with K,Home Stories A2Z


Blue Coffee Bag Side Tables

21 Apr

Blue Coffee Bag Side Tables

Upon Carrie’s insistence, I finally went to Goodwill.  It was my first Goodwill experience and it was a definitely interesting. When I walked in, I was confused. Was this where old shoes go to die?

But after wondering around for a while, I realized what a goldmine Goodwill can be.  It is not a place you walk into and have billions of goodies at your fingertips.  Goodwill is a place for hunters.

You have to search and be patience and then find your kill. Well, I found my kill.  These cute little nesting tables.

Priced at $5. Awesome.

I carted them home and then later discovered another goodie about these little babies.  I think they might be Eames era mid century three-legged spider tables.   Double Awesome.

Before you think I ruined an antique, let me first let it known these tables were damaged.  The leather like tops (maybe leather, maybe pleather?) had tears on the sides and were also pierced with tacks on the top!  So there ya’ go.  Nothing wrong going on here.

My initial plans were to cover the tops with coffee bags and paint the legs shabby chic white.  I did that but then changed my mind.  The white was pretty but wasn’t exactly matching my bedroom decor and our new Anthropologie bed cover. So the legs were then repainted blue.

Here is how I originally made them in white (and then at the bottom of this post, I’ll show you how I converted them to blue).

First the tops were popped off which was easy because they just wiggled off.

The legs were painted white.   Then instead of scraping the paint off and damaging the wood —  what I did was my favorite aging technique ever…taking a cloth dripping with water  (while the paint still wet) and ringing the water out of the cloth so that it washes off some of the paint in selected areas.  It is so easy but hard to explain and even harder to photograph since it is done so quickly.  Maybe I’ll make a video of it soon! :)

Covering the table tops was easy.  Since the leather like tops were thin and flat, the leather was left on.  The tops were used as a pattern for cutting the coffee bags.The pattern was cut about 1.5 inches from the edge of the top of the table. I should have made it larger because the coffee bags were very firm and a little extra space would have been helpful when turning the edges over.

Time to attach the coffee bags.  The coffee bag was laid “pretty side” down.  The table tops were laid on top of the coffee bag.

Then the sides were pulled up and glued to the back edge of the table tops, using Gorilla Glue.

To keep the coffee bag and table top pressed together while the glue dried, I secured with these high tech fancy rocks from my patio.  Ha!  Hey, it worked.

Once dried, the tops were popped back into the legs.

DONE!  Well maybe not done?

We needed some small bedside tables in our bedroom.

The white shabby chic tables were pretty but they just didn’t quite go with the design direction I am trying to accomplish in our bedroom.

So, they got a coat of blue paint!

Now they compliment the bedspread better.

I think the blue matches and also goes with the funky eclectic vibe.

There is not a lot of room in our bedroom.  These tables are a good fit because they are small yet still provide ample space for a drink or a book beside the bed.

What do you think?

iKea Hemnes Dresser Makeover – Knotty Pine to Espresso

7 Apr

iKea Hemnes Dresser Makeover – Knotty Pine to Espresso

We bought a lot of second hand furniture when we moved to Los Angeles since we wern’t sure if the move was permanent.  Most of the second hand furniture we bought was from iKea and needed some improvement.  One of these items was a dresser that had previously been utilized in our bedroom. Since storage space is limited in our house, we now use the dresser in nook in the dining area to hold extra household items like serving platters.

This dresser started out with plain pine wood.  Pine wood with lots of dark colored knots.  I really can’t really stomach pine wood on too many things. Pine wood just doesn’t seem to go with much.

Here was what it looked like before.


I adore dark wood, specifically the shade expresso so I chose Varathane Wood Stain (Espresso) to spruce up this dresser.

My choice was really convenient because the contractor that refinished our wood floors left plenty of leftover Varathane espresso wood stain in our garage.

The entire dresser the quickest one minute sanding and piece of sandpaper has ever seen.

I was in a rush and just wanted a light abrasion to help the stain penetrate.

The staining process was very easy.  I sloshed on the stain with a foam brush and here is the end result.


The whole sanding and staining process took less than an hour.  The knots in the pine wood aren’t visible anymore however they did leave an interesting effect with the stain.  Some of the areas and knots really absorbed the stain well and others not quite so much.  The result is a blotchy but unique effect.

I have some pieces of furniture in my house that have taken me weeks to restore yet somehow this dresser always gets the most compliments.  People always want to know where I got it and what type of wood it is.

Since the dresser does not receive a lot of traffic, like a table top might, I didn’t bother sealing it.

$20 purchase on Craigslist

+ $0 leftover stain

= $20 Total Cost!

Since the project was so cheap, I might upgrade the hardware in the future! :)



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