March 23, 2013

Adorning Our Front Door

For a while I have had a wreath for the front door on my list of DIY projects to do and I finally got around to making one! When I decided to take on making a wreath I searched for some tutorials and didn't really find any. So, I thought I would just post a little tutorial of how I made my wreath.

Grape Vine Wreath
Fake Flowers
Wire Clippers
Thin Floral Wire
Thick (18 gauge) Floral Wire
Glue Gun
Unfinished Wooden Letter
Coordinating Paint and Paintbrush

First cut the stems off of the flowers, but leave about two inches at the base of the flower. Next, wrap the thin floral wire around the base of the flowers. I also put a glob of hot glue over the wire just as an extra precaution and for a sturdier hold. Make sure to leave plenty of wire because that is how the flowers will attach to the wreath. I decided to attach the flowers with wire instead of only hot glue so that the flowers could be easily removed in the future to change the look of the wreath.

The next step is to arrange all of your elements on your wreath until you are happy with how it looks. Once you are happy with the layout of everything take the thin wires that are attached to the flowers and thread them through the grape vine wreath. It is important to not just go around the wreath, but through it so that the wires are well hidden. Then just twist the wires together on the back side of the wreath. Make sure that the wires are twisted tight enough and the flowers are securely held onto the wreath.

Finally, paint your letter in the color you had chosen and let dry. To attach the letter I used two thick floral wires attached to the back. I attached the wires to the letter by taking fabric I had laying around, which happened to be burlap, and hot gluing the fabric to the letter with the wire underneath. Once everything is dry put the wire through the wreath like with the flowers and secure by twisting in the back.

This is my completed wreath as-is. I am still contemplating if I want to add anymore greenery to it. I hope you give making your own wreath a go! It was a fun project and now I have a cute wreath to put on our front door!

I ended up adding some more greenery, so I thought I would post a picture of my final project. I used the same method to attach the greenery that I used for the flowers. I think the greenery is just the little extra that the wreath needed. I love that it can be up almost year round!

Thanks for reading!

March 3, 2013

Painting Our Dresser and Nighstands

Once we had assembled our dresser and nightstands from Ikea, which was a whole project itself, it was time to get them painted! We decided to paint them a color that coordinated with our comforter. The paint department at Home Depot was able to create a color that perfectly matched. After talking with the man that helped us at the paint counter I decided to skip the primer since we were painting bare wood. Another tip that we got from the Home Depot employee was to make sure the paint has fully cured (up to two weeks) before using it.

Dresser Before

Nightstand Before

In hindsight I would have sanded before applying the first coat of paint. I think it would have helped the first coat dry a little smoother. I applied the first coat of paint out on our balcony to try to avoid the paint smells in the apartment. 

The First Coat Drying

Once the first coat had fully dried I used fine sandpaper to get all the roughness off. You will probably have to use multiple grades of fine sandpaper to get a smooth finish. Since I sanded between coats so well I ended up not needing to sand after the second coat. In some places getting a smooth finish required sanding past the first coat of paint, but the second coat covered all those areas.

After Sanding The First Coat

After the sanding was complete it was time for the second coat of paint! Since the weather wasn't so nice I decided to give painting a go inside and hoped the fumes wouldn't be overwhelming. Thankfully the smell wasn't bad at all!

Painting The Second Coat Inside

Deciding Between Knobs

I realized after the fact that I had missed the front of the middle leg with both coats, so I will have to go back and put at least one coat on the leg. We waited a few weeks to use them and so far the paint has held up well without any wax or poly finish. Overall I am really happy with how the dresser and nightstands came out! This experience painting furniture has given me the confidence to tackle my next project of painting and refinishing out dining table and chairs.

As always, thanks for reading!