Sunday, March 6, 2011

Repurposing makes me happy!

Almost as good as finding an awesome deal on something that I can transform into "my own," is taking something I've used and use it again in another way. It started when planning our wedding about two years ago. I knew I wanted to make it a personal affair and was looking for ways to do that. Our venue had this beautiful room, I think originally purposed as a study, with beautiful built-in bookshelves. I had the idea to put pictures of us, and our guests in frames scattered on the bookshelves. Since we had such a small wedding (60?) and the people we invited were people we were close to, we were able to put photographs of us with our guests next to their place cards for dinner. It gave a little structure to finding their names, but not the typical alphabetical order. I bought all the frames at (shhhh) the dollar store. Yep, a dollar a piece. They were almost all different (in style and color) so I spray painted them all a pretty metallic bronze to tie them together. I love me some good spray paint!

After the wedding, I took all the pictures out, and repainted the frames all black.  I put some of the old photos back in and changed some others. I used the frames on the walls in the staircase leading to the basement. The picture here of the staircase is just plain horrible. It looks really yellow, but the walls are actually way more sand than yellow.  Even though they were only a buck a piece, it still felt good to reuse the frames for something else! Money well spent in my book! My original plan was to sell the frames after the wedding. Not to make money, but to get at least something back, but I think this was far better.

We also used the frames to highlight things like the bar menu
This is one of the bookshelves from the reception. This was taken after everyone took their place cards which is why it looks a little bare.

pile-o-frames after painting and letting them dry

We have lots of family and friends in these photos and it's nice to see their faces, even if it's only in photos!

(The first two pictures were taken by our amazing photographer, Alan Bushnell.) 

The Guest Bed

I'm going back a little bit in order to make the pages on here functional.  It may have taken me a couple hours to figure out just how to do it, but I think I finally got it! This past summer I bought this headboard and footboard at our community yard sale for $10. Yep, $10. We just had a queen sized bed on a metal frame, so I thought this was a great opportunity for me to have a new project and to finish off the room. A few years back I did this same thing to an ugly dresser and night stand.  So those were in the guest room and they were asking so nicely for me to get them another piece to match them. ;)
I didn't take a ton of photos, but I think enough to see the progression.

I started first of course by sanding the flat portions with an orbital hand sander, and the rounded edges by hand. Not sure what grit sand paper I used. Knowing though that I was painting the piece and not staining it allowed me to not be so incredibly picking when it came to sanding.

There was this fantastic dental "molding" on the top, which is what is painted (I forgot to take a real "before" photo before doing anything to it). I thought it would be easier to get in all those small grooves with spray paint. I used RustOleum's American Accents in Heirloom White.

A little closer up... you can see where I sanded down a little more on some of the edges to give it a more antiqued look afterwords.

This was actually on accident but it turned out looking really cool. I think it started to crack for two reasons... one, it was hotter than dickens outside that day, and two, I'm fairly certain I didn't let it dry completely before giving it a couple more coats of paint.  And speaking of paint, I can't remember exactly what I used to paint it (the spray was really just for that molding pictured here). But it was very similar to the Heirloom White.

Finally taking the time to let it dry.  I love the way the bar on the footboard looks, especially the rings in the middle. 

With the dresser I mentioned earlier

I'm kinda bummed that the beautiful detailing is hidden behind the pillows!! Hadn't accounted for the fat mattress!

In it's place finally. The nightstand on the left is the one that matches the dresser and the little nightstand on the right was a bargain find in the clearance section of my local nursery/garden center.