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Thursday, April 26, 2012

Love My New Bissell Steam Mop!

I just had to share my new purchase, a Bissell Steam Mop.  I've never owned or used one before.  But I love it!  So much easier than a mop and bucket.  We have original polished floor boards throughout our house and with 2 littles the floor easily breeds dust bunnies and food crumbs.  I'm a bit of a clean freak and vacuum regularly.  But today I just swept and then steam mopped. I did the whole house and the floors were not even wet when I finished.  They actually shone!  

And I was lucky enough to get it on sale. :) I also purchased the carpet attachment for our rugs and got a carpet cleaning stick and 2 cans of carpet cleaner free.  I can't wait to try them too. :)

To all my US friends, I know Bissell is made there and I really would have liked the model with the detachable steam unit, but they don't have it in Australia.  Maybe one day. :)  Does anyone else have a Bissell?

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Vintage Fold Out Camera

I thought I would share with you something my father recently gave me.  It's a Kershaw Eight-20 Penguin vertical folding camera.  My research says this camera was introduced in 1946, making it approximately 66 years old!  

It has been passed down through our family and is in fantastic condition. It even has it's original case. Don't you love the way it folds out at the front! 

And it also came with some of the original photo processing envelopes. Aren't the graphics amazing.  I'm thinking of framing these and displaying them near the camera. 

I can't wait to find a special place to display them in my home.  

:) Julie

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White French Doors Restyled

After living with boring brown wooden french doors for 2 years, 
I finally took the plunge, or should I say found some time 
on my to do list, and painted them white.  

Below is the before pic taken when we first moved in.  

Firstly we removed all the brass hardware.  

Then I taped around all the glass windows inserts.

Next I sanded and did an undercoat and, then 3 overcoats of
white semi gloss paint.

I spray painted the handles with a grey metal undercoat.
Then applied 2 coats of gloss black spray paint. 

 I decided not to take the doors off the hinges, 
and instead painted straight over them in white. 

After all the tape was pealed off and the glass cleaned (sparkle, sparkle), this was the result.

I'm so happy with how they turned out.
They make the entry seem bigger and brighter now. :)
And the black handles look so much better.

What do you think?

:) Julie
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Monday, April 23, 2012

Nominated For The Versatile Blogger Award!

A big shout out to Rachel at Loving Life for nominating me for The Versatile Blogger Award.  

I'm so excited to have been nominated!  


I will be sure to pass on the love shortly. :)

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Sunday, April 22, 2012

Thrifty Finds!

Firstly, a BIG hello and welcome to all my new followers!  I'm thrilled you will be joining me on my creative and thrifty adventures.  Don't forget to leave a comment when you drop by.  I love reading them and they inspire me to keep creating. :)

Now back to this weekend's thrifty finds. I found some great treasures at the yard sales.  I wasn't planning on venturing out, but I'm glad I did now. :)

I got the brown wooden planter box which I intend to paint white and put something lovely inside.

I also got 3 very old bread baking metal tins.  Aren't they amazing!  I have no idea what I am going to do with them yet.  

What treasures have you found this weekend?

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Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Grey and White Dresser Restyled

I won't keep you in suspense, here is my finished now Grey & White Dresser!

 And here is what I started with ...

I recently did a post on how I came to "rescue" this dresser from the roadside.  You can read the full story here.  But in short, I went to a lot of trouble and time to get it in the car. Embarrassing!

But I am happy to say it was well worth it!  This little or not so little freebie came up so beautifully.

 I'm not doing a tute on the makeover because it was so basic.
In short, I removed all the stickers and gave it a good sand.
I didn't intend to distress it so I left the blue paint on.
Then I mixed up some grey chalk paint,
gave it three coats and then sanded it again.
I spray painted the handles white and let a bit of paint chip
off in areas to give an aged look.
Then I mixed up some white chalk paint and trimmed the top edges and legs.
I plan to give it a coat of clear furniture wax as well.
The inside drawers were super clean so I didn't do anything to them.

The total cost = Nil. 
 I used left over paint and spray paint. 
And the whole project only took 2 days to complete!

I love it!  What do you think?

I was going to use it as a craft storage dresser,
but now I'm wondering if it would look better in the lounge room
with beautiful accents on top.  Either way, it is definitely a keeper. :)

:) Julie
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Monday, April 16, 2012

Old Book Page Coffee Table

 I picked this old coffee table up on ebay.
I hadn't redone a coffee table before,
and I was interested to see what I could do with it.

Here she is in all her original brown glory,
laminate top and all.
Something they forgot to mention in the ebay listing.
I always tend to steer clear of laminate.
It's just plain scary hoping the paint will stick.

So for this project I did some research and decided to try
Zinsser Oil Based Cover Stain primer.
 Other posts had raved about it.
And the can said no sanding, will adhere to shiny surfaces
(such as laminate) and will block stains including tanin.
So I gave my table one coat of Cover Stain,
then after that had dried I applied a coat of semi gloss paint.  

But when I brought it inside that night to inspect it after it dried,
I noticed there was already a bit of scratched off paint on the top, grrr..
AND massive tanin stains had seeped through the paint on the legs.
Can you see the brown patches on the legs above?

Then I scratched the top surface with my fingernail and the paint flaked off.
Like this...

If you have used it, any suggestions what I did wrong?
I'm guessing I didn't mix it properly.

As it was Friday night, I still wanted to finish this project on the weekend.
So I pulled out my White Knight  Stain Stop Binder and gave the whole piece 2 coats.  

This covered the stains well.  

Next morning I added a coat of white chalk paint all over.
And this seemed to stop the top from flaking. Woohoo! :)

After taking it outside I distressed the table on all the edges
but wanted to add some detail to the top.
I thought about painting a graphic on,
but my love of old book pages won out.  

So out with my Modge Podge and old book of Shakespeare
in front of the tv after the kids went to bed.
It didn't take very long to cover at all. :)

I let it dry over night and then the next morning sprayed on a coat of
White Knight Clear Gloss to seal and protect the entire table.

I'm so pleased with how it turned out. :)

The book pages will protect the laminate top so I don't have to 
worry about scratches or flaking at all now.

Tea anyone?  And that is my coveted, we don't drink out of,
look but don't touch, Royal Doulton tea cup and saucer on the table.  :)  
Isn't the colour gorgeous!

P.S. Take a peak up in the left hand corner of this photo.
That is the leg of my redone writing desk.
It's exactly the same design as the coffee table legs!!!
Queen Anne style. I love that it matches. :)

P.P.S. I emailed Rustoleum who makes the Zinsser paint about
my concerns and received a reply today advising it does
take 3-5 days for the paint to fully cure.
They also offered to come out and inspect the table. 
I thought that was really great customer service.
I'm going to try it on another project and see how it turns out. :)

:) Julie
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Thursday, April 12, 2012

An Embarrassing Roadside Rescue of an Old Dresser

So, this is what I rescued ...

Let me start with how I got the dresser in the first place.
I was out driving and saw it on the side of the road.
I pulled over, backed up, put on my cap and slid cautiously out of the car.
Yes I find it embarrassing.
And even more embarrassing if the owner was to see me!
I'd probably leave it and run.

Anyway, after a very quick inspection and a pull of the first few drawers,
I knew it had potential and it was coming home with me.
Don't mind the thing is solid wood and needs two people to carry it.
Mind over matter.
I picked it up and hobbled to the back of my car.
Then I proceeded to undo and take both of the kids car seats out,
and no they were not in them, lucky for them, haha.

So after both seats were removed and stacked in the front seat,
I laid down the back seat and then removed our rather large pram from the boot.
All the while keeping a hawk eye on my prize.
So 15 minutes later I was lifting and heaving and pushing the dresser in the back of the car.
Thank goodness I remembered to put the pram back in before driving off.
Our pram was not cheap and would not have been a fair trade!

I then slinked back around to the driver seat and drove off.
It would have been so damn funny to anyone watching to see the
lengths I went to to get it in the car.
But hey, if someone is just going to give it away,
why not recycle it into something I can use.

Yes it is blue, and dirty, and covered in stickers and
has a very bad paint job.  But ...

I love the shape, all the drawers are clean inside and in perfect working order.
And it will be a great storage dresser.
I had no idea what I was going to do with it when I picked it up,
but I recently saw some dressers done as craft storage and they looked amazing.
I hope mine turns out amazing too.  I'll keep you posted!

:) Julie
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Wednesday, April 11, 2012


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Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Old Record Cover Black Chair

I had been watching ebay for a chair for my desk.
I had been using one of our dining room chairs in the interim.
Last week I was out driving and there it was on the side of the road.

So I stopped, got out and put it in the boot.
Not exactly the chair of my dreams, but it definitely had potential.

First of all I took the seat off and gave it a light sand all over as it was flaking a bit.

Then I applied 2 coats of flat black spray paint.
Spraying is so much faster and dries quickly and more evenly too.

However, when this paint dried, it left a black layer of dust and kept
smudging off on my hands.
So I ended up applying a coat of clear gloss spray paint which sealed the paint.

I decided to recover the seat.  Drop cloth had been the obvious choice,
until I remembered seeing a black and white cushion cover during
the week that I was going to throw out.

It was rescued, washed and matched perfectly!
I cut one side to size and stapled it in place underneath the seat.
Then screwed the seat back on.

Then I decided to add something to the back of the chair.
I was going to add some French script, but then I remembered these ...

Old Edison record covers!
So I picked out some graphics off one of the covers and applied them with Modge Podge.

Here is my finished chair!

Total cost was $2.50 for the spray paint.

I'm really happy with the result.

AND I rescued, recycled and repurposed!

:) Julie


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Monday, April 9, 2012

Roses & a Sneak Peak at My Back Porch Makeover!

What is it about fresh cut flowers from your own garden that make them so beautiful?

 The colour or variety?

 Because they look and smell divine?

 Because you grew them?

 Because you didn't have to pay for them?

I think because they make my house feel like a home. :)

Roses and freesias are my favourite flowers.  What are yours?

:) Julie

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