Fall Home Tour 2015

Fall Home Tour 2015 | Pretty Handy Girl

When I got back from my extended stay in Houston (after my sinus surgery), I was so anxious to decorate for fall. All those magazines I’d been perusing and all the beautiful Instagram photos had me craving some beautiful autumn decor. It took me a few days to get my energy back after I got home. In fact, I was still feeling a little worn out when I spotted this post on Facebook about a local multi-family yard sale that ran Monday – Saturday.

Rustic Yard Sale

I thought it was a joke or a dream. But, something told me (more like fifty of my fans on Facebook) that I should get off the couch and high tail it to this sale. My sweet friend Candace from Rusted Roots Blog was easily persuaded to meet me there, so I wouldn’t be the only fool who fell for a yard sale mid-week.

We both filled our cars with some great finds! I got home and quickly put together a little pumpkin and rustic relics display by our side door.

Fall Home Tour 2015 | Pretty Handy Girl

Fall Home Tour 2015 | Pretty Handy Girl

Fall Home Tour 2015 | Pretty Handy Girl [Read more…]

Family Organization Center Door

Family Organization Door | Pretty Handy Girl

It’s hard to stay organized when you are a DIY blogger, Mom, wife, cook, cleaner, taxi driver, and a student (taking evening classes for the general contractor exam.) I’ll be the first to admit that I’ve dropped a few balls in this massive juggling act. But, I strive to improve and part of that effort involved hanging a Family Organization Center Door next to the refrigerator.  Did you know there was such a thing? Ha, me either until I saw this half window door at our local Habitat ReStore.

Family Organization Door | Pretty Handy Girl

A vision of a place to plan meals, keep track of chores and keep reminders became clear in my head when I first saw it. Want to see how I took this old door and turned it into a family organization center? Hang around for a few minutes to find out.

(contains some affiliate links)



After finding a door for your organization center, you may need to trim down the sides to fit your space. I had to trim an inch off each side of my door to fit on the side of our refrigerator cabinet. Use a circular saw to trim the door. Using a Kreg Rip Cut will help keep the saw straight.

Family Organization Door | Pretty Handy Girl

For extra stability, you may want to add a caster on the bottom of the door (opposite the hinge side). This is not necessary, but will add extra support.

Family Organization Door | Pretty Handy Girl

Cut scraps of coax cable to fit into the tops of the windows. [Read more…]

DIY Metallic Color Blocked Canisters

Metallic Color Block Canisters | Pretty Handy Girl

I’m back with another easy Lowe’s Creative Idea this month. When you get tired of your cobalt blue canisters you can easily spray paint them with a metallic color block pattern. That’s exactly what I decided to do with my thrift store canisters.

I’ve been on a major mission to purge things I no longer use or love from my house. I have almost completely filled our dining room with things to donate. I had contemplated donating my cobalt kitchen canisters because the color wasn’t making me happy anymore. But, then I realized that I could give them an entirely new look with some spray paint.



Remove the lids, the metal ring, and spoons from your canisters.

Metallic Color Block Canisters | Pretty Handy Girl
(Wood plank photo backdrop courtesy of Leen the Graphics Queen.)

Use a sanding block to lightly rough up the surface of the canisters. Wipe all the sanding dust off with a damp rag.

Metallic Color Block Canisters | Pretty Handy Girl

Spray the outside and base of the canisters with Valspar Premium Primer. [Read more…]

Racing Stripe Mirror Makeover

Racing Stripe Mirror Makeover | Pretty Handy Girl

While my sister and I were renovating the Topsail Beach condo we had a strict budget. Finding a large mirror for less than $15 was challenging until I found this mirror with potential. I know my sister was doubtful, but I had a vision. Some red milk paint, lattice and glue would make this racing stripe makeover complete!

Racing Stripe Mirror Makeover | Pretty Handy Girl

To transform the mirror, I disassembled the top and cut off the panel portion using my Dremel MultiMax. I salvaged the top crown moulding and re-attached it to the new top of the mirror with glue and finish nails.

Then it was time to add stripes.

Materials (some links are Amazon affiliate links):


Tape off the edge of the mirror where it meets the frame. Paint two coats of Miss Mustard Seed Tricycle red paint onto the frame. (See this post for painting with milk paint.)

Racing Stripe Mirror Makeover | Pretty Handy Girl

After the paint dries, wax it or leave it unfinished. Mark the center of the frame at the top and bottom of the mirror.

Racing Stripe Mirror Makeover | Pretty Handy Girl

Cut pieces of lattice to fit the mirror frame width. (I used three pieces of lattice and cut a fourth piece in half for the outer stripes.) Pre-paint the lattice pieces ironstone (white) and let dry.

Wet the frame and the back of the lattice. Apply a small amount of Gorilla Glue to the backs of the lattice.

Racing Stripe Mirror Makeover | Pretty Handy Girl

Line up the center lattice piece with the pencil mark. Attach it and the other two pieces beside the middle lattice.

Racing Stripe Mirror Makeover | Pretty Handy Girl

Use a ruler to create a space between the middle stripe and the outer small lattice piece. Glue the outer pieces in place.

Racing Stripe Mirror Makeover | Pretty Handy Girl

Set a weight (or paint can) on top of a scrap board and the lattice pieces while the glue dries.

Racing Stripe Mirror Makeover | Pretty Handy Girl

Remove the weight. Paint the top and bottom edge of the mirror frame white to create the illusion that the stripe continues around the frame edges. Distress the lattice pieces with sandpaper if you want a rustic look.

Racing Stripe Mirror Makeover | Pretty Handy Girl

Hang your mirror on the wall and admire! Not bad for $15, two coats of paint, and some scrap lattice!

Racing Stripe Mirror Makeover | Pretty Handy Girl

The mirror hangs happily in the twin bedroom at the Topsail Beach Condo. Click here to see the rest of the condo!

Hope you never turn down a $15 mirror again ;-).



DIY Clock

DIY Clock

August means getting ready for the upcoming fall season, back to school, sports season and the holidays. Hi everyone, it’s Jessica at Decor Adventures and I have an easy project to keep you on time for all the activities you and your family have planned these next months, a DIY clock. Did you know you could make your own clock? It’s super easy to put together and you can paint or decorate it to perfectly match your home’s decor. Let’s get started.


  • Clock kit
  • Double sided tape
  • Wooden tray to make your clock
  • Paint (optional)
  • Decorative paper
  • Spray adhesive (optional)
  • Scissors
  • Pencil
  • Ruler
  • Drill and drill bits
  • Hanging hardware


1. To make this clock, I found a 99 cent tray at the thrift store. I knew it would be great for this project because it can hang on the wall and will conceal the clock kit inside the tray. You could also use a picture frame without glass or even some other creative object you’d like to use for your clock face. Make sure it’s something flat so your clock kit will fit into it.

Thrifted Tray

2. The back of the tray will actually become the face of my clock. To prepare it, prime your tray.

Make Your Own Clock

Decide where you would like to put the hands of your clock. It can be in the exact center of the tray or off center for a different look. Mark where the center of the clock will be placed. [Read more…]

Painted Vanity Nightstand

Painted Bedside Vanity | Pretty Handy Girl

In the quest to makeover our master bedroom and save money, I’ve been painting several pieces of furniture to coordinate with the new bed I built.

One of the pieces I painted was this small desk that doubles as a nightstand. Our bedroom isn’t very large and our master bathroom is even smaller than what can be described as a “master” anything! Doing my hair and makeup in our bathroom isn’t a viable option, especially when both Pretty Handsome Guy and I wake up at the same time. When I saw this little desk at a local thrift store, I grabbed it. Especially because she was only $20!

Painted Bedside Vanity | Pretty Handy Girl

She had lots of age, but not much character.


However, she was the perfect size and had just enough storage for a makeup vanity.

With a light sanding, primer and a coat of Benjamin Moore Advance paint, she is now showing her more glamorous side. [Read more…]

Aqua Dresser Makeover – What’s Knot to Love?

Facelift for a Knotty Pine Dresser | Pretty Handy Girl

You know you’ve seen those knotty pine dressers from yesteryear. Their spotlight has faded and they are finding themselves at thrift shops, ReStores or worse yet…at the curb.

Facelift for a Knotty Pine Dresser | Pretty Handy Girl

I’m begging you to let this knotty eyesore back into your home. It doesn’t have to be banished. It’s KNOT her fault she was built from cheap pine. All this dresser needs is a new coat of paint and some beautiful brass knobs and all her flaws and knots will be forgotten.

Facelift for a Knotty Pine Dresser | Pretty Handy Girl

Extra observant points to anyone who realized that this blogger forgot to take a good before picture! She looked very similar to the knotty pine dresser shown above, except she had wooden circle knobs and an unfortunate set of bun feet. I did remove the bun feet from the dresser when I first brought it home. Mama ain’t got no need for buns in this oven (or on my dresser.)

Here are the details on how to refinish a knotty pine dresser and give it a complete makeover!


  • Sandpaper
  • BIN primer
  • Damp rag
  • Paint brush
  • Foam paint roller
  • Quart of Benjamin Moore Advance paint (Deep Ocean)
  • Valspar asphaltum glaze
  • Brass hardware (I bought mine from House of Antique Hardware)
  • Drill with bits
  • Screwdriver
  • Level


This tutorial will be fairly brief, if you need more photos and explanation, you can view my previous dresser painting adventure.

Begin by removing all the drawers and knobs. Lightly sand the dresser and drawer fronts. Wipe off any sanding dust. [Read more…]

DIY Button Pendant Light {#LowesCreator Idea}

DIY Button Pendant Light |Pretty Handy Girl

While I was house touring on Tybee Island and having  fun antique and salvage shopping in Savannah, I spied some bare lamp shade frame hanging lights. They immediately inspired me to design a DIY Button Pendant Light for over my bedside table in our master bedroom. Part of the desire was born out of the necessity to have more space on my bedside because the table actually doubles as my makeup vanity.

DIY Button Pendant Light | Pretty Handy Girl

Making a Button Pendant Light is an easy DIY project, but you’ll need some patience while threading the buttons. I’ll also show you how to wire a lamp socket and lamp plug! Ready to get started?


DIY Button Pendant Light |Pretty Handy Girl


Instructions: [Read more…]

DIY Ring Holder by DIY Show Off

DIY jewelry holder tutorial | Pretty Handy Girl

Today I have one fabulous thrifter and DIYer! She’s well know for her DIY projects as well as showing off yours! Please welcome Roeshel from DIY Show Off.

Hi, Pretty Handy Girl friends! I’m Roeshel from DIYShowOff and today I’m excited to be sharing a super easy DIY gift idea for the Très Frugal Gifts series. a DIY ring holder!


  • Ramekin (Dollar Tree 3 for a $1)
  • Deer Figurine ($2.50 at KMart in the holiday ornament section).
  • Gold spray paint
  • Industrial strength glue

DIY Ring Holder Tutorial Materials

Use what you have on hand to keep your costs down! You can use left over paint and glue. This ring holder can also work using things you may already have at home. Ornaments with a top that fits a ring, plastic toys like a giraffe with a long neck or an elephant with a trunk. I personally use is a cat and the rings slide onto the tail. A finial or dowel would be pretty too! Or how about that dried out highlighter/marker? Paint it! For the base, jar lids or small saucers/plates would work equally as well. Tight budget? Search the junk drawer!

Instructions:  [Read more…]

Pen & Ink Sketch Decorative Plates

Pen and Ink Sketch Decorative Dessert Plates | Pretty Handy Girl

My goodness, November is flying by! Get it…flying…insects. I crack myself up. But seriously, I have been having a blast coming up with new creative gift ideas that you can make. This idea for making pen and ink sketch decorative dessert plates turned out better than I expected! The only downside is that they really are only for decoration. The paint used on the plates can be cured, but the manufacturer states that it technically isn’t food safe.

With that disclaimer out of the way, think about how you could commemorate an event with a personalized plate. Or you could use the same stenciling technique on the outside of a pitcher, mug, glasses or anywhere that the food wouldn’t be in contact with.


Pen and Ink Sketch Decorative Dessert Plates | Pretty Handy Girl

  • Dessert plates (bought mine at a thrift store for $1 each)
  • Porcelaine Chalkboard paint
  • Porcelaine gold paint
  • Scissors
  • Credit card or spatula for burnishing
  • Sponge applicator or paint brush
  • X-acto knife
  • Decorative stencil cut outs (used my Silhouette to cut bug shapes)
  • Transfer paper

Optional: Porcelaine or glass ink pens for writing


Instructions: [Read more…]

Make a Tray from a Cabinet Door

Make a Tray from a Cabinet Door | Pretty Handy Girl

One of my favorite places to thrift shop is the Habitat ReStore. I mean, where else can you find cool $2 cabinet doors?

Make a Tray from a Cabinet Door | Pretty Handy Girl

This fine cast off door is just screaming to be upcycled into a beautiful tray. Especially when the same thrifting adventure yielded VERY COOL door hardware! Simply combine the two and you have yourself a unique serving tray to give as a gift (or keep for yourself.)

Make a Tray from a Cabinet Door | Pretty Handy Girl


  • Cabinet door
  • Door handle or cabinet handle
  • Wood putty
  • Putty knife
  • Ruler
  • Pencil
  • Drill
  • Drill bits
  • Screwdriver bit
  • Rubber bumpers

Optional: Rub n’ Buff Gold Leaf

The steps are super simple. [Read more…]

How to Cut Bar Stools Down to Counter Height Stools

counter stools

Yes you can make those wood bar stools fit your counter.  Here’s an easy DIY fix to make bar stools into counter stools (and a quick makeover too!).

Bar stools typically sit at 30″ high, this is fine and dandy if you have a proper bar where the countertop is elevated higher than the working countertop space.  Kitchen designs are trending now away from the proper bar towards one even countertop surface.  No worries, you can still use those bar stools for your counter by easily cutting off the bottom 4″ to reduce the stools to a counter height of 26″:

counter stools1

(The white stools above are counter height and in the picture for comparison purposes.)

In addition to fixing the height of your stools give them a fresh look with a quick paint job and a new design: [Read more…]

Round Up of DIY Gift Ideas

It’s the homestretch before Christmas. With less than a week away, those procrastinators amongst us (ahem, me) need to get crackin’.

These were a few of my favorites from the DIY Gift Idea link party.

DIY Instagram Necklace by Mod Podge Rocks

DIY Photo Ornaments by Making Lemonade Blog

DIY Pocket Hand Warmers by Practically Functional

DIY Map Coasters by The Country Chic Cottage

3 Ingredient Lemon Salt Scrub by Eclectically Vintage 

You’re So Hot! DIY Potholder by Flamingo Toes

Christmas Light Canvas by Ask Anna Moseley

DIY Wine Gift Basket by Bonfires and Wine

Chalk Painted Thrift Store Bucket to Gift Basket by Thrift Diving

I hope you have some more inspirations for those last minute gift idea! Good luck.


Faux Zinc and Chalkboard File Cabinet – Lowe’s Creative Idea

This summer I was out thrifting with a few friends for I Heart Thrifting Day. At the Goodwill I grabbed a metal chest that had extra wide and deep storage! That was about the only thing that it had going for it. The hot pink and mint green were disguising the true potential of the chest, but like a color-blind dog, I was able to see beyond its garish appearance.

And then the poor chest sat in our garage for months and months until I had a chance to work a little spray paint magic and turned it into….ta da: [Read more…]

Day 4 Pulling It All Together on the GMC OnStar Hidden Treasure Adventure

After yesterday’s diversions, we were all feeling the pressure to purchase the final items on our wish lists. This would be our last day on the yard sale and the last day to prep any items we purchased before placing them into the Habitat house.

We decided to create a master wish list for everyone so we could all be on the lookout for each other. There was a lot of texting with photos attached as we shopped in the in the morning.

[Read more…]

Day 2: The Start of the GMC OnStar Hidden Treasure Adventure

I made it home safely on Sunday night after an exhausting but fulfilling week. I apologize for not posting in real time, but there was truly no way for me to do it. Sleep was a bit of a priority for me ;-). But, we’ll just roll back our clocks and I’ll take you along for an adventure of a lifetime!

As you know, GMC flew six of us (Brooke from All Things Thrifty, Donna from Funky Junk Interiors, Lindsey from Better After, Cy & Traci from Beneath My Heart, and myself) to Michigan to take part in the World’s Longest Yard Sale and for a charitable cause. After our arrival in Detroit, we toured the OnStar command center, did some quick shopping at the Habitat ReStore in Detroit and then headed to our hotels for the night.

The next morning we woke up early to start the adventure! We each drew a piece of paper from our GMC organizer’s hand. On the paper was a room name. The room corresponded to a REAL room in a brand new Habitat for Humanity house in Birmingham, AL. The owner, Alexcia Moore, was set to receive the keys and move in on Sunday, August 5th.

[Read more…]

Day 1 : GMC Hidden Treasure Adventure

Well, I arrived safely in Detroit and hit the ground running. It is going to be a whirlwind of activity from now until Sunday, August 5th! Are you up for the adventure? If so, I’ll take you along for the ride.

First, I met up with fellow Junk Warrior, Donna. I know y’all know this famous junkster as Funky Junk Interiors. Donna is such a sweet gal (errr, I mean a tough chick!) [Read more…]

The World’s Longest Yard Sale

11-27557 Hwy 127 Brochure 2011.indd

“I’m Wanted…..Dead or Alive” That’s right, I’m teaming up with another Tough Mother and we are about to get Funky & Handy on the World’s Longest Yard Sale. [Read more…]

2012 I Love Thrifting Day Recap

Top row, left to right: Me, Gynne, Erin – Bottom row left to right: Kristen, Courtney, Amy

Saturday morning I rushed out the door into a THICK WALL of HOT and HEAVY HUMIDITY in search of some great bargains. Yes, I had to bold and capitalize that statement about the weather, because it was really that nasty! Despite the weather, I pushed forward to join some other local thrifters for the second annual I “Love” Thrifting Day. It was a good chance to have fun shopping, pointing, laughing and sweating (like a pig in a cooker.) If you stayed home in your air conditioned comfort, I commend you on being cool. For those that missed the fun, here is the recap that can be enjoyed in the comfort of your climate controlled home (or office.)

We started at The Resale Boutique, which truly remains one of my favorite consignment stores. They have several booths set up inside and there are always sales and discounts resulting in some fabulous deals! Like this antique child’s toolbox for $7.50 (- 20%!) And it had several of the tools still inside. I tried super hard to hide my excitement, but I don’t have a good poker face.

If tools aren’t your thing, how about this fun little nut cracker? He was still there when I left, so rush on out to scoop him up if you like nut crackers.

In the “Whoa! What the Heck is That” category, I discovered this rather busty machine. It turns out it was an old Dr. Scholl’s foot massager.

I thought these little spice drawers were interesting. But, when I pulled them out I discovered they weren’t drawers, but little square shakers.

I fell hard for this birds and bees carved glass plate. But, I couldn’t justify the price. It is heavy, french and truly beautiful, so I’m sure it was worth every penny.

One of the many things I bought from The ReSale Boutique were these Ralph Lauren platform flip flops. They are super comfy and may just be my new favorite shoes.

Next it was on to GCF or Goodwill Community Foundations. We went to two Goodwills and at the first one I scored this great metal storage chest for $23. The drawers look cheap, but the glides and construction are heavy duty. I have plans to make it less “girly” and use it for art supply storage in my studio. A big thank you goes to Kristen for insisting I buy it and helping me haul it to the register and out the door!

At the Brier Creek Goodwill, I met sweet Tonya who asked for my opinion on this table and 6 chair set. At under $100, the table was sturdy, but needed some TLC. Tonya has some plans to give it a makeover, and I told Tonya that I’m holding her to it!

I found these men’s shirts and an American flag (thanks Gwynne for pointing out the flag in the display case.) I have some patriotic plans for them, but I won’t tell you what they are yet. A little more about that flag, it is 100% cotton and was only $19.99. I didn’t open it up in the store, but when we unfolded it at home, it took up one entire wall in my son’s bedroom! This sucker is huge!

If you follow me on Twitter and/or Instagram, you may have been scared seen some of the stranger things that we saw while thrifting.

1. Before chia pet, there was straw bunny!

2. Everything looks better upholstered, well except a gigantic mirror.

3. Foot tall set of The Three Stooges figurines, make a beeline to Estatibles if you can’t live without them!

4. Rhinestone-encrusted nightmare-inducing fine art twins were pointed at and then we quickly ran away. SCARY!!!

We had a fabulous time. A special thanks to Courtney from The Joy of Decorating for organizing this year! Hopefully we’ll have some new recruits next year.


Rustic Wooden Caddy with a Branch Handle

You know when you are browsing through a yard sale and you spot a sad little box that is just begging for you to buy it and give it a new life?

No, okay I might be alone on this, but it happens to me all the time!

A while ago I spotted this little box for $3 at a yard sale. I couldn’t just leave it there in it’s sad burgundy dust-covered state. So, I brought it home and it sat in my garage collecting more dust. (This happens more often than I’d like to admit. It’s a sickness I have.) [Read more…]