DIY Personalized Wall Shelf

personalized wall shelf 1

personalized wall shelf

Happy Wednesday Pretty Handy Readers!  Today’s project is a DIY personalized wall shelf and I’ll show you how to make it.  I’m Jaime from That’s My Letter, a fellow DIY blogger who builds, paints and sews.  I made this wall shelf as a gift for Bryce’s birthday, it makes a great statement AND it’s useful too!

personalized wall shelf 1

Just a bit of painting and assembly to make this awesome, personalized wall shelf.  And of course you can adjust the paint colors to fit your scheme.  Bryce happens to have navy painted walls in his bedroom so I know this wall shelf will really pop once hung in his space.

personalized wall shelf 2

The stained wood shelf adds just a touch of warmth and coordinates well with the hardwood floors.  For a deeper shelf, use a wider board. I used a 1×3 but you could use a 1×4 or larger.

Materials:
(Amazon affiliate links included)

personalized wall shelf supplies

  • 1/2″ or 3/4″ plywood cut to desired size (approx. 2′ x 4′)
  • scrap piece of 1/2″ plywood approx. 4″ x 36″
  • 1×3 pine board cut to width of plywood
  • 9″ MDF Pre-cut letters
  • Single robe hooks
  • French cleat kit
  • paint, roller & brush
  • stain & foam brush
  • sandpaper
  • tape measure
  • pencil
  • wood glue
  • 2″ wood screws
  • 3/4″ wood screws
  • drill & bits
  • nailer & finish nails

Instructions:

Before beginning, layout your letters onto plywood and cut the plywood to size based on the length of the name.

Step 1: Apply stain to the 1×3 shelf piece on all sides using a foam brush. Wipe off the excess.  Set the shelf aside and let it dry.

personalized wall shelf step 1

Step 2: Paint your letters.  Paint your plywood back (not shown).

personalized wall shelf step 2

Step 3: Distress the edges of the letters using sandpaper. [Read more...]

Red, White & Blue Themed Boy’s Room Reveal

Boy's Red, White & Blue Themed Room | Pretty Handy Girl

Boy's Red, White & Blue Themed Room | Pretty Handy Girl

Happy Friday!!! I finally finished my son’s room makeover. Poor kid has been asking for over two years when I was going to work on his room.

Boy's Room Before | Pretty Handy Girl

It feels so good to be done and be able to share the final reveal with you. The theme started four years ago when I converted his extra closet into a reading nook. The blue, white and red work beautifully together.  [Read more...]

Securing an IKEA LILLÅNGEN Mirrored Cabinet to the Wall (with an outlet cutout)

Wall-mounted IKEA LILLÅNGEN Mirrored Cabinet turned Stuffed Animal Storage | Pretty Handy Girl

Wall-mounted IKEA LILLÅNGEN Mirrored Cabinet turned Stuffed Animal Storage | Pretty Handy Girl

Have you ever shopped the “As Is” section at IKEA? There are some deals to be found there! Like this IKEA LILLÅNGEN Mirrored Cabinet. The cabinet had a small bent piece at the bottom and was therefore marked down to $60 from $100! Score! I easily bent the metal back in place with pliers once I got home. Then I decided to use it as a wall-mounted mirror locker for my son’s stuffed animals. Hang out for a few minutes and I’ll show you how to safely mount this cabinet AND move an outlet into the cabinet.

Wall-mounted IKEA LILLÅNGEN Mirrored Cabinet turned Stuffed Animal Storage | Pretty Handy Girl

Handy Boy #2 had a narrow spot between his closet and reading nook that I knew would be perfect for this cabinet. The idea was to give him some storage for his ever multiplying stuffed animals. (They are seriously like rabbits! It never ends. I might need to look into a forced sterilization program.) Knowing my son and his antics (have I told you how he can climb his way around the room without setting foot on the floor. It’s amazing, albeit scary to watch. I’ll have to video him sometime.) I knew that I needed to secure this locker to the wall. But, there was an outlet in my way. And this is the outlet that gives power to the copper wall sconce in his reading nook. Therefore, I had to have access to the outlet. Plus, when he gets older he could charge his electronics in the locker.

Wall-mounted IKEA LILLÅNGEN Mirrored Cabinet turned Stuffed Animal Storage | Pretty Handy Girl

(I should note that I neglected to buy the optional base for this cabinet. Instead, I built a quick one using 2×4′s and 1×4′s.) 

Materials:

  • Drill
  • Quilting pin
  • Measuring tape
  • Pencil
  • Outlet extender
  • Multi-purpose tool
  • Toothpaste
  • Screwdriver

Instructions:

First I located the stud in the center of the wall. Locating studs is easy by using a quilting pin. [Read more...]

Wall Mounted Desk Tutorial

Wall-Mounted Desk Tutorial | Pretty Handy Girl

Wall-Mounted Desk Tutorial | Pretty Handy Girl

Hey, I hope you had a fabulous weekend! Was it productive? Full of DIY activities? Well, I’m back with a tutorial for building a wall-mounted desk. The great thing about a desk that is wall mounted is it can be small or large and it won’t take up any floor space! This gives a nice clean look and makes the room feel larger. Plus, the materials will almost certainly cost less than buying a desk.

My son is starting to have more homework in school. (I didn’t realize that first grade was the new 3rd grade!) I figured soon enough he’s going to need a spot to sit and work on homework. Plus, he’s an avid Lego builder and this makes a great surface for him to build on.

Materials:

  • Finish grade plywood (my desktop is 16″ x 40″)
  • Painter’s Tape
  • 1 – 2″ x 4″ x 93″
  • 2 – 9.5″ x 9.5″ bird’s mouth brackets
  • 4 – 3″ cabinet mounting screws
  • Paint
  • Paint brush
  • Drill
  • Drill bits
  • Level
  • Pencil

Instructions: 

Begin by assessing where you want to mount your desk. For better perspective, you can outline the desk area with painter’s tape on the floor.

Wall-Mounted Desk Tutorial | Pretty Handy Girl

Cut your finish grade plywood to size. Using the Kreg Rip Saw with my miter saw is much easier than hauling out the table saw and getting as assistant to help lift the plywood. If you put a piece of rigid foam insulation underneath, you can cut almost anywhere! Just set your saw blade depth slightly below the plywood.

Wall-Mounted Desk Tutorial | Pretty Handy Girl

Cut your 2″x4″ stud 4″ narrower than the length of your desk top surface. (My desktop is 40″ long, therefore my mounting stud is 36″ long.)  Locate the studs in your wall. Mark their location.

Wall-Mounted Desk Tutorial | Pretty Handy Girl

Pre-drill holes in the mounting board at the stud locations. Use a small bit slightly narrower than your screws. Then use a larger bit the width of your screw head to create a countersink hole. Drive the cabinet mounting screws into one end of the mounting board and into the stud. Use a level to make sure your mounting board is level, then drive the additional mounting screws into the other studs. [Read more...]

A Blue Loft Bed for My Son

blue-loft-bed

blue-loft-bed

Guys and Gals, I am here today to tell you that you can build a loft bed for your child! However, unlike most of the tutorials you find on my site, building this loft bed is not one of them. Instead, loads of gratitude goes to Ana White and her fabulous plans for building a loft bed. You can follow her plans for the build. I assure you, they are detailed and easy to follow.

DIY Loft Bed | Pretty Handy Girl

The only modification I made to the plans was to move the ladder to the foot of the bed instead of the side. What I will show you is how to color stain the bed blue in two simple steps. I’m absolutely in love with the Minwax Express Color wiping stains. They go on super easily, and clean up is a snap with soap and water. Then you seal it as easily as you stained it. Coolest product EVER!

Materials: [Read more...]

An Easy Way to Add Color to a Dresser {Lowe’s Creative Idea}

Easy Added Color to a Dresser | Pretty Handy Girl

Easy Added Color to a Dresser | Pretty Handy Girl

Adding color to dresser drawers is definitely an easy way to add a pop of color to an otherwise boring piece of furniture. Add some new knobs and your dresser will look like a new piece of furniture! (Tutorial for creating custom knobs coming soon.)

You could say that I finally got that Kick in the Pants I needed to start working on my son’s room. One makeover I had in mind was giving his dresser a pop of color.  The top and sides of the dresser were in great shape and it has a tough laminate top. Instead of painting the entire dresser, I decided to paint only the drawers because — knowing my little guy — he would have it scratched up in no time.

Easy Added Color to a Dresser | Pretty Handy Girl

Materials:

Instructions:

Start by removing clothing from the drawers. Then firmly pull the drawers all the way out. Some drawers have a clip at the end, just pull straight toward you. Others may require you to lift up on the front to release the drawers from the track. Mark the inside of the drawer so you know which slot to return it to.

[Read more...]

How to Install a Brick Wallpaper Mural

Installling Brick Mural Wallpaper | Pretty Handy Girl

Tips for Installing Brick Wallpaper Mural | Pretty Handy Girl

Today I can’t wait to show you how to easily add dimensional interest to a focal wall in your home. Installing a Brick Wall Mural is definitely a DIY project you can tackle if you have a friend or two to help you. When Wallpaper Direct contacted me to offer to let me try some of their products, I was still a bit wary (having stripped my fair share of wallpaper.) But, then I stumbled upon the white brick wallpaper and saw how cool it looked. I decided to give it a try and let them send me a wallpaper mural specifically for my son’s bedroom. But, let’s back up. Remember last week when I admitted to being a procrastinator? Well, this is what I started with:

Back Camera Back Camera

After staring at Nickelodeon green for 6 years, my son and I decided it would be calming to paint the walls a soothing gray. And, I thought it would be really cool to create a loft look by installing a giant wall mural of white brick. (Note: The large mural panels has since been discontinued, but you can purchase white brick wallpaper that looks very similar and may actually be easier to install by yourself.)

I ordered the mural and it arrived safely to our house in a few days. I quickly organized a few friends who had installed wallpaper to help me.

Installling Brick Mural Wallpaper | Pretty Handy Girl

To install a wallpaper mural, you’ll need a few tools.

Materials:

  • Wallpaper application brush
  • Squeegee
  • Platforms or step ladders
  • Wallpaper paste
  • Paint roller
  • Paint tray
  • Wallpaper mural
  • Wet rag
  • X-acto knife
  • Two DIY friends who are also wallpaper experts

Prep Work:

Before wallpapering your wall, clean it with a mild cleanser (diluted TSP is wonderful, but you can use regular multi-purpose spray cleaner.) Patch any holes or imperfections with spackle (joint compound). After the compound has dried, lightly sand the wall. [Read more...]

How to Recover a Butterfly Chair

How to Recover a Butterfly Chair | Pretty Handy Girl

How to Recover a Butterfly Chair | Pretty Handy Girl

Happy St. Patrick’s Day! Do you have a butterfly chair that is sun-faded or has hideous fabric on it? I bet you thought it was a lost cause, right? Nope! With a sewing machine, some new fabric and a little spare time you can recover that ugly butterfly chair and have a new one. Okay, so I didn’t recover it with green fabric in honor of St. Patrick, but what could be greener than a good old upcycling project! Believe it or not, this was a much easier project than I had anticipated, so don’t get scared by the curves. You can “sew” do this! ;-)

How to Recover a Butterfly Chair | Pretty Handy Girl

I stumbled upon this chair at Goodwill for $9.99. Normally I wouldn’t spend this much for a sun-faded chair, but because I was working on the school library makeover project — and we needed more comfortable seating — I bought it.  After all, we would have had to pay at least double for another comfy chair.

How to Recover a Butterfly Chair | Pretty Handy Girl

Luckily, I had some soft leftover fleece fabric that I could use to recover the chair. I wish I had measured how much I used, I think it was a little less than 2 yards.

Materials:

  • 2 yards of fabric
  • Coordinating thread
  • Pins
  • Scissors
  • Old butterfly chair + old cover

Instructions:

1. Remove the old cover from the butterfly chair frame. Lay it on top of your fabric (both right sides up.) [Read more...]

Galvanized Tub Storage Bench with Furry Upholstered Lid {Lowe’s Creator Idea}

Galvanized Tub Storage Bench for Kids | Pretty Handy Girl

Galvanized Tub Storage Bench for Kids | Pretty Handy Girl

Every month Lowe’s challenges me to create another unique project to share with you. This month’s challenge was creative storage ideas. Have kids? This is a unique storage solution using a galvanized tub and a furry upholstered lid. It’s the perfect place to store and corral all that kid clutter in your child’s bedroom. The storage tub doubles as a bench and a step stool. Don’t be deterred if you don’t have children, the storage bench could be used for magazine storage and much more!

Grab these materials and tools and follow along with me (and my 13 year old assistant.)

Creating the Galvanized Storage Bench and Lid

Materials for the Galvanized Storage Tub and Lid:

Galvanized Tub Storage Bench for Kids | Pretty Handy Girl

 

Instructions:

Turn the galvanized tub upside down on the plywood. Use the sharpie to mark approximately 1/2 – 1″ out from the edge of the tub. [Read more...]

School Library Reveal

Valspar_color_winners

School Library Painted with Montpelier Wedgewood | Pretty Handy Girl

Remember last week when we were picking colors for the school library? Well, I’m back to show you how everything came together!

But first, I’d like to announce the winners of the Valspar paint samples:

Valspar_color_winners

 

Congrats to Bonnie, Lynda, Marion, Cathleen, Joanne, Colleen, Amy H., Nicole, Becky V. and Nancy B!  Be sure to email me with your addresses and final color picks!

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To quickly review, we painted the walls and ceiling tiles using Valspar Montpelier Wedgewood. Then we stenciled stars on the ceiling.  After installing the ceiling tiles the library looked like this. Better, but still a bit ho-hum.

School Library Painted with Montpelier Wedgewood | Pretty Handy Girl

I had much bigger plans and was far from finished. I called in some expert help from my friend Leen the Graphics Queen and her husband. They cut and installed all the silver trees and birds. We had an absolute blast working together. There were several birds leftover, so Leen played hide and seek by putting a few birds elsewhere in the library. The kids (and I) had fun trying to find them over the next few days. [Read more...]

Tips for Choosing Paint Colors in the School Library

Tips for Choosing Paint Colors | Pretty Handy Girl

Tips for Choosing Paint Colors | Pretty Handy Girl

Choosing paint colors can be a daunting task. Looking at small paint chips at your local Lowe’s Home Improvement store can be a bit overwhelming. Especially because there are so many colors to choose from! (That can be a good thing too ;-).)

Luckily I have two tips to help you choose the paint color that’s right for you:

1. Use Valspar paint. Finding a paint color you love is easier with Valspar. If you don’t love the first color you choose, you can have another on them. It’s as easy as, love your color, or change your color. That’s the Valspar Love Your Color Guarantee. And it certainly helps alleviate the stress of choosing the right paint color for your room.

2. Create larger paint chips. Looking at tiny paint chips won’t help you conceptualize that color over the entire wall. Making large paint swatches using foam board and sample paints is easy and can save you time when choosing the ideal paint color. I put together this short video to show you how we selected the final color for the school library.

I knew if I could create big paint chips and let the librarian live with the large chips for a few days, she’d be better prepared to make a final decision. As you saw, she was much more comfortable choosing this way.

The winning color was Montpelier Wedgewood by Valspar. And, luckily after we began painting, we all fell in love with the color she chose.

Here’s how we tackled painting the school library (acoustic ceiling tiles and all!): [Read more...]

Canvas Art with Loads of Fun Laundry Quote

Canvas Quote Art Tutorial | Pretty Handy Girl

Canvas Quote Art Tutorial | Pretty Handy Girl

Happy Thanksgiving! I hope you get your fill of food and family time today.

I need to give a big congrats to the Silhouette Portrait Giveaway winner, Kelly Crumpler Kelly! Woo Hoo, you’ll be making all your gifts with the Silhouette Portrait this year, won’t you Kelly?!

Speaking of making your own gifts, I’m on a bit of a DIY art kick lately. I think creating your own art is creative, frugal and fun! Today I have a tutorial for creating this laundry quote canvas art, but frankly you can use your own favorite quote! Or create personalized name art for one of the kids on your gift list!

The easiest way to create quote artwork is using a Silhouette craft cutter to cut your letters out. If you don’t own one, I’m happy to announce that Silhouette is offering their BEST SAVINGS right now on a new Silhouette Cameo (12″ width cutter) or the Silhouette Portrait (up to 8″ wide cutter). You can take advantage of the Silhouette Black Friday Deals by using my discount code “HANDY“.

Here are those amazing deals on Silhouette cutters:

black-friday-blogger-button

Silhouette CAMEO® Holiday Bundle $229.99   (You save $176.92 or 43%)

  •  Silhouette CAMEO® electronic cutting tool
  • Power cable/AC adapter
  • USB cable
  • Silhouette Studio® software
  • $10 download card
  • 12 in x 12 in cutting mat
  • Silhouette blade
  • Basic Instruction Guide
  • CAMEO instructional DVD
  • Silhouette Studio® Designer Edition Software
  • $25 download card
  • CAMEO dust cover
  • Silhouette hook tool
  • Silhouette scraper tool
  • Silhouette spatula tool
  • Silhouette pick-me-up® tool

 

Silhouette Portrait® Holiday Bundle: $129.99    (You save $156.92 or 55%)

  • Silhouette Portrait® electronic cutting tool
  • Power cable/AC adapter
  • USB cable
  • Silhouette Studio® software
  • $10 download card
  • 8 in x 12 in cutting mat
  • Silhouette blade
  • Basic Instruction Guide
  • Portrait instructional DVD
  • Silhouette Studio® Designer Edition Software
  • $25 download card
  • Portrait dust cover
  • Silhouette hook tool
  • Silhouette scraper tool
  • Silhouette spatula tool
  • Silhouette pick-me-up® tool

 

CAMEO & Portrait Holiday bundle: $299.99.    (You save $229.99 or 43%)

Silhouette CAMEO® electronic cutting tool

  • Power cable/AC adapter
  • USB cable
  • Silhouette Studio® software
  • $10 download card
  • 12 in x 12 in cutting mat
  • Silhouette blade
  • Basic Instruction Guide
  • CAMEO instructional DVD

 AND

Silhouette Portrait® electronic cutting tool

  • Power cable/AC adapter
  • USB cable
  • Silhouette Studio® software
  • $10 download card
  • 8 in x 12 in cutting mat
  • Silhouette blade
  • Basic Instruction Guide
  • Portrait instructional DVD

Plus:  2 $25 download cards

You can use the Silhouette for so much more than you ever imagined. I use mine a lot for cutting letters like I did for the laundry sign.

Canvas Quote Art Tutorial | Pretty Handy Girl

But, you can also use it for creating custom temporary tattoos, fabric and cardstock shape cut outs, flocking iron ons, stenciling on wood, glass etching, faux pen & ink etching, 3-D paper projects, printable foil labels and much much more!

silhouette-projects

Today we’ll focus on the tutorial for creating your own quote canvas art!

Materials:

Canvas Quote Art Tutorial | Pretty Handy Girl

  • 12″ x 12″ canvas (or make your own canvas)
  • Silhouette adhesive backed cardstock
  • Acrylic paints (white, yellow, golden yellow)
  • Paint brush
  • Palette knife
  • X-acto knife
  • Fine tipped permanent marker
  • Mod podge matte finish
  • Scrapbook paper

Instructions:

Type out your quote in the Silhouette studio software. Send the art to cut on adhesive backed cardstock using your Silhouette. [Read more...]

Indoor Hopscotch using Painter’s Tape

indoor_hopscotch_painters_tape

indoor_hopscotch_painters_tape

When the weather outside is frightful and your kids are less than delightful, lay a roll of painter’s tape on your floor and soon your kids will be having fun indoors.

How about that for a quick little limerick? Well, this project is almost as quick. All you need is a roll of painter’s tape (I used ScotchBlue for delicate surfaces, but you can use any type) and a pair of scissors.

scissors_tape

Lay out your hopscotch grid on the floor. (It was easy on our square tile floor because the tile layout acted as a guideline for our course.) [Read more...]

Recovering This End Up Style Kindergarten Chairs

polycrylic_coating_on_chairs

How-to-recover-this-end-up-chairs

As a parent of two elementary school students, I always ask my kids’ teachers if they need anything for their room. Usually the answer is markers, wipes, or snacks. But, my kindergartner’s teacher knows about my secret identity after having taught my older son for a year. So, she didn’t hesitate to ask me if I could possibly recover a few really sad looking chairs that had seen their fair share of kindergarten butts. ;-)

old_school_chair

These poor chairs were still very study, but the fabric was nubby, pilled and stained. I love a good challenge, so I took all three of the chairs home over the Christmas break.

The first task involved removing the seats. Before I touched the seats, I flipped over the chairs and marked the front side of the chair so they would fit together perfectly when I put them back together. [Read more...]

Camping Themed Boy’s Room

NolanBedView
NolanBedView
I have been having the best time meeting most of my favorite bloggers at Blissdom.
Dear sweet Home & DIY bloggers, y’all really rock!
A few of those rockin’ women bloggers:
Sandra (
Sawdust & Paper Scraps), Rhoda (Southern Hospitality), Shaunna (Perfectly Imperfect), Ashley (Pure + Lovely), Erin (Two Story Cottage) and Layla (TheLetteredCottage)

While I am here, I figured you might love a good before and after. Here is my son’s bedroom shortly after we moved into our home.

NolansRmBefore2
NolansBeforeRoom
Pretty boring, huh? Poor guy didn’t even have a bed frame. But, frankly, it let me sleep better at night knowing he wouldn’t roll out of bed.
Two plus years later, we moved beyond the rolling out of bed phase AND something divine happened. I met a “real” mural artist and it was like finding a clone of myself! I promptly hired my clone to help me paint a mural in my son’s room.
A beautiful woodland and mountain theme!
DayWall
Tom Barber (mural artist in Raleigh, NC) painted most of the background and I painted the animals (because wildlife illustration was my major in college.)
NolansNightWalls
I bought some corner rounded shelves at Home Depot and installed them in the corner where Tom painted a big tree.
SecretCloset
A perfect spot to curl up with a good book.
CornerNook
The closet is my son’s super secret hideaway.
HiddenCloset
When you open the door you are met by a tent.
Tent
Pretty Handsome Son can either close it up or secure the tent flaps on the sides with the velcro tie backs.
Tieback
The tree is made from some crepe myrtle branches that we had to trim from our trees out front.
Tree
The lantern in the tree was an old oil lantern. I drilled a hole in the bottom and inserted a candelabra light kit. It is the perfect amount of light for him to read stories by.
Lantern
I used a larger branch for the curtain rod. And tied the rod to the shelf with some rope knots.
WindowView
CurtainRod
And I had to add this adorable bird that my son made in preschool. No kids room is complete without his or her artwork.
KnotandBird
He sleeps soundly under the light up moon on the wall.
BedView2
The bookshelf was re-painted and I mod podged old US Geological Survey maps onto the back.
mapbookcase
Thumbtacks
I wish I had a room like this when I was a child. Heck, when he outgrows it (which I hope he never does), I’ll move in to his room!
Before:
After:
BedandTree
Bedding from Target Woolrich collection.
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