Monthly Archives: July 2014

First Coat…Done!

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DSCN3293DSCN3292With nothing but dry weather in the forecast for the next bunch of days, I’ve got nearly ideal conditions for working on my projects.  If only it wasn’t so dog-gone hot outside.  Alas, I’ll pick my battles.  With weather on my side and plenty of daylight hours, I’ve been working on the spindle bed frame, the vintage nightstands, and the 100 year-old dresser.  Figured I’d post a couple of pictures of the bed frame with one coat of color and having been sanded in preparation for another coat.  Lucky for me, the black paint seems to be covering well (at least thus far).  As it is with all of my projects, it is just so very rewarding to actually start to see things get closer to what I have in mind as the finished product.  Better get back to work.

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Done By Hand

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As I was putting the first coat of color on the spindle bed headboard, I found myself thinking how GOOD the bed frame looks…and it isn’t even done.  Though I’ve had doubts that I could get the results I was hoping for…even with me doing all of the work by hand, I no longer have those doubts.  YES, it has been a ton of work thus far.  YES, I have been working on this particular project off-and-on for a year.  YES, I am rather particular.  But, I think all of those things are making it that much more rewarding.  At one point, I found myself thinking I should out-source this project.  At another point, I found myself contemplating buying a paint sprayer.  But in the end, sanding, painting with a brush, and keeping things clean along the way…that’s what I know AND it is giving me just the results I was hoping for.

So, here’s to working hard, being meticulous, and getting it done by hand!

As tempted as I am to post ‘during’ pictures, I’m going to hold off for just a bit longer.  You’ll just have to trust me when I say, the bed frame is starting to look just like the vision I’ve had in mind all along.  Stay tuned.

Moving Forward…Finally

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Upon looking back at all of the posts I’ve made over the last year or so, I noticed that I hadn’t written much about the 100 year-old dresser I got for FREE off of Craigslist.  Last summer, I did get some work done on the drawers of the dresser.  So, they’ve actually been done…and just waiting for the actual dresser to be painted.  However, in order for that to happen, it needed a little work.  And by ‘a little work‘, I mean A LOT OF WORK.  It has taken more than a year to get to the point where the actual dresser can be moving forward.  The dresser has been sanded, caulked, patched, strengthened, and the top has been stripped.  All of this just to get it to the point of being ready to prime.  And then I noticed something was missing…DSCN2719

In the initial picture of the old dresser, you can’t tell that there was a missing piece of trim on the left-hand side at the bottom.  Once I noticed this, I set out to find a replacement.  However, something that old just can’t be found lying around.  Luckily I have an incredible neighbor who is involved in a local wood shop.  I presented him with the dilemma.  He was more than happy to help make this new piece, so I made a template for him.  TrimTemplateAfter a couple of prototypes, we ended up with a ‘new’ piece totally made from scrap.  The trim piece has such a complex shape it did take a bit of work to recreate that.  DSCN3182

With the assistance of some wood glue and clamps, the trim piece is now a part of the whole dresser.  I am glad to announce that the new trim piece looks just perfect!  I got everything caulked and patched.  DSCN3207With that piece finally in place, it was finally time to get this dresser primed.  Just think of all the space I’ll gain once I finish this particular project!  If that isn’t enough to keep a person motivated, I just don’t know what would provide comparable motivation.

Up next, I’ve got a good deal of sanding, cleaning, and many coats of color yet to go.  In the meantime, I’ll be busy putting one foot in front of the next.

Rebuilt Rails

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In keeping with the progress on the antique spindle bed, I figured I’d better give an update on the bed frame rails that I’ve been working on rebuilding.  BedRail1The original rails were lovely, but lacked strength and longevity.  We saved quite a few of the square nails used to hold the rails together.  Yeah, that’s how old this bed is!!  Before deconstructing the original rails, we took a whole lot of measurements.  I think I may have mentioned in an earlier post about where we got the supplies for the new rails, so I won’t repeat myself here.

With the new rails constructed, I noticed that one of the pieces was a tiny bit thicker (which resulted in being higher).  I was worried that the bed would be conducive to cock-eyed sleeping.  This troubled me to no end, so I learned how to use a wood plane.  DSCN2653It took a good deal of time to get it perfectly even, but there isn’t much that can’t be beat by a determined individual.  Once I had it how I wanted it, I caulked it all up and filled in any unnecessary imperfections.  When that was done, it certainly looked to be a seamless piece of wood.  DSCN2703

This set of rails is built to last another hundred years or so…having used wood glue and plenty of well-positioned screws.  This past winter, I was able to get the two rails primed.  With that completed, it was time to get some actual color on them.  I have decided to make the spindle bed frame black, so that’s the color I’ve been painting the rails.  Only one more coat of black to go…then I can move onto the clear coats.

When all of that painting is all done, I will be able to get those metal pieces back on and will definitely take an ‘after’ picture.  Until then, this is where the rails stand…or rather, lie.

Primed…and Ready for Some Color

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DSCN3192The weather cooled down a bit today and brought with it some crazy thunderstorms.  Luckily, I had the feeling something was in the air…and had already brought my projects in from outside.  So, after enjoying the storm and seeing the sky clear, I figured I’d better get back to work with all of these projects.  In order to be happy with the results, I ended up putting two coats of primer on the nightstands.  The green one was dark and the silly pink one just didn’t want to take the paint.  I did plenty of sanding (with 80 and 100 grit sandpaper) and had them clean as could be.  Alas, the second coat seemed to do the trick.  Now, they are primed…and ready for color.  DSCN3196

I can’t remember if I mentioned in an earlier post my idea for the coloring of these nightstands.  In case I haven’t, here’s my idea.  I really enjoyed the colors I painted the refurbished record cabinet I worked on last summer.  So, I’m thinking of doing these just opposite of the record cabinet, which would be green on the outside and grey/gray on the inside area.  Figured I’d get started with that.  As of right now, the inside has one coat of grey/gray.  Of course, there is still a great deal of work yet to be done.  AND, in doing this two colors, it will take twice as long (well, nearly).  But, I just have to stay optimistic about the end result.  Hmmm, guess I should start thinking about knobs at some point.

Spindle Progress

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As I mentioned in the previous post, I came up with the great idea to remove some more spindles.  This time it was to be two from the headboard…which would then match the footboard.  So, I got out a little saw and removed those two pieces.  As a result, I was left with four rather deep dowel-like holes.  It would take a whole lot of wood filler to patch those holes.  A suggestion was given that I use the dowel side of the spindles I had removed as filler.  GENIUS!  DSCN3194I measured how deep each one could go in the hole and made a mark on that particular piece.  DSCN3198Got out the trusty little saw and went to work.  I was forward-thinking enough to mark each piece as to which hole it belonged to.  With those pieces sanded, I put some wood glue into the hole AND on the homemade dowel.  A little tapping and the pieces were in place.  It’ll take me a whole lot less wood filler to make these holes disappear.

Though I can’t take credit for the idea…I did bring it to life.

One Step Forward, Two Steps Back

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With summer upon us, I’ve got time and weather on my side to get work done on some of my projects.  With that being said, take another look at the title of this post.  As it is with most of my projects, something goes wrong OR becomes more complicated OR requires additional steps OR whatever.  Keep that in mind as you read this as well.

I’ve been wanting to see some progress on the spindle bed frame that I’ve had since last summer.  Though it hasn’t been posted as of yet, I have done quite a bit of work on the side rails for the bed frame.  Those pieces are at a standstill for the time being.  I finally bit the bullet and started working on the headboard and footboard.  Need I remind you, this is a spindle bed…meaning that there are nearly a million…’eh plenty of surfaces to be sanded, cleaned, etc.DSCN3191  Clearly a daunting task, I got both pieces sanded the other day.  I was just working on wiping them down (with visions of getting both of ’em primed by week’s end), when tragedy struck.  My rag got snagged on a tiny piece of wood (on the headboard), which I proceeded to pull…and then it turned into a HUGE sliver/split/call-it-what-you-will.  So, I got out the wood glue and set to work with the clamp and some wax paper.   DSCN3197 However, fear not, while this was drying, I did get the footboard primed.  HOORAY!!  While gazing longingly at both the (now-primed) footboard and the (in-repair) headboard, I came to the conclusion that I really like the look of the spindles on the footboard (where I had to remove a spindle earlier).  So, I got out the saw and removed two spindles from the headboard.  Probably don’t need to remind you that there wasn’t a thing wrong with these spindles…I just really think I’ll like it all that much more with those two gaps.  No going back now, but I do think it looks great or rather, will look great (once I get it primed and painted).

There you have it, nothing is ever as simple as it seems.  At least not in my world.  Up next: more sanding, cleaning, priming, etc.  The fun never ends…but then again, what fun would anything be without a challenge here or there?!