Magazine File Box Facelift

Magazine File Box Facelift | Pretty Handy Girl

It’s a new year and I want to give a few rooms in our house a fresh new look. Our office was one of the first spaces I completed when I started this blog (has it really been 5 1/2 years!)

I’m tired of staring at the same room day after day. I know many of you feel the same way. You have that itch, or a burning desire to hop in the car and drive to your nearest Home Goods, World Market or The Container Store to buy cute colorful decor or storage bins. I almost caved into that desire because I was tired of looking at the two tone boxes I bought 6 years ago.  But, that would mean discarding the old ones. You know how I feel about throwing things away! If I can upcycle it, I’m going to!

Magazine File Box Facelift | Pretty Handy Girl

Within 10 minutes you could give a Magazine File Box a Facelift (or a storage box)! I saved a lot of money reusing the old. Factor in the gas money I saved by not driving to the store. And the time I saved by not leaving the house. I think I deserve a big fat high five! Put ‘er there fellow savers!

Here’s How to Give Your Magazine File Box a Facelift: [Read more…]

Galvanized Metal Star Garland and Mantel Vignette

Galvanized Metal Star Garland | Pretty Handy Girl

Remember when I told you I’ve been on a galvanized metal kick? Yes, you may have noticed my Rustic Metal Magnetic Window Frame on Monday. When I put the windows over our fireplace mantel, I knew there was something missing. I tried a few different garlands in the space, but nothing felt quite right. When I gazed upon the leftover galvanized metal, the idea to create a Galvanized Metal Star Garland was born.

Galvanized Metal Magnetic Windows | Pretty Handy Girl

Today’s post is part of the Deck the Halls DIY-Style tour hosted by Jen Woodhouse, If you are just hopping over today from Sawdust and Embryos, amazing vignette, right?! My favorite is the monogrammed scroll snowflake. Welcome to my little slice of DIY Blog heaven. I can’t wait to show you how I made several elements over our fireplace mantel.

Deck the Halls DIY Style | Pretty Handy Girl

The Galvanized Metal Star Garland is so incredibly easy to make. You’ll be looking for more places to decorate with a garland of stars.

Ready to get started? Grab these things and let’s make something stellar!

Materials:
(contains affiliate links)

Instructions:

Draw stars on your galvanized sheet of metal. If you prefer a beautifully aged metal patina, you can follow this tutorial to make your metal age quickly.

Galvanized Metal Star Garland | Pretty Handy Girl

Cut out the star shapes with tin snips.

Galvanized Metal Star Garland | Pretty Handy Girl

Rub the pencil marks off the stars with a gloved hand. [Read more…]

Rustic Metal Magnetic Window Frame

Galvanized Metal Magnetic Windows | Pretty Handy Girl

I was really inspired by Laura Putnam’s new book: DIY Rustic Modern Metal Crafts. I love the look of aged galvanized metal and knew that our home needed more of it. Today I’ll share with you a tutorial to create your own Rustic Metal Magnetic Window Frame, inspired by Laura’s Vintage Window Memo Board. But, you’ll definitely want to get a copy of Laura’s book to learn how to make 34 more storage and decor items using galvanized metal!

Materials:
(contains affiliate links)

Galvanized Metal Magnetic Windows | Pretty Handy Girl

Optional: Silicone Caulk (for more secure metal)

Instructions:

Ready to make your own Rustic Metal Magnetic Window Frame? If you have newer galvanized metal, you can easily add an aged patina to metal following this tutorial. Prepare ahead of time, because it might take up to 8 hours to get the look you want. The sheet you see below was left overnight in the solution to get a nice white patina.

aged-galvanized-sheet-metal

Remove the glass panes from your old window.

old-window-pane

Measure the size of each pane.

measure-window-panes

Transfer your measurements onto the galvanized metal sheet. [Read more…]

Scrap Wood Shadow Box Frame

Rustic Scrap Wood Shadow Box Frame | Pretty Handy Girl

Okay all you woodworkers. You know as well as I do that you have an ever growing scrap wood pile that you don’t want to throw away because you know you’ll use it one day.

Rustic Scrap Wood Shadow Box Frame | Pretty Handy Girl

Well, today is that day! I challenge you to use some of that scrap wood to make a Scrap Wood Shadow Box Frame like this one.

But, if this isn’t your cup of tea, Sawdust Girl has an entire link up party of scrap wood projects. And you can link up your own scrap wood challenge too!

Okay, so the truth behind this project is that Pretty Handsome Guy has been begging me to frame his U.S. Open flag from Pinehurst almost two years ago. My poor hubby rarely asks for anything, and I figure he waited long enough.

Materials:

  • Scrap wood
  • Backer board (scrap bead board, masonite, thin plywood)
  • Construction glue
  • Lattice edging
  • Wood stain
  • Plexi-glass
  • D-hooks
  • Drill bit
  • Drill
  • Double stick foam tape
  • Brad nails
  • Nail gun or hammer
  • Machine screws
  • Saw (miter, jigsaw or Dremel UltraSaw)

Optional: Gorilla Glue

Instructions:

Cut backer board to the size you want for your frame.

Rustic Scrap Wood Shadow Box Frame | Pretty Handy Girl

Lay out your scrap wood on top of the backer board until it is covered completely.

Rustic Scrap Wood Shadow Box Frame | Pretty Handy Girl

I tried Gorilla Glue Construction Adhesive on this project (Gorilla Glue sent me a tube of glue to try out.) It dried and held all the scrap wood firmly.

Rustic Scrap Wood Shadow Box Frame | Pretty Handy Girl

Lift up one piece of scrap wood at a time and apply construction glue onto the backer board. [Read more…]

35 Upcycled DIY Gift Ideas

35 Upcycled Gift Ideas | Pretty Handy Girl

Plain glass jars, an abandoned door, a rickety ladder, or stray drawer. These aren’t items most people would envision as beautiful gifts. But we aren’t most people. We like creating unique, one-of-a-kind gifts that add beauty to a space in our homes instead of landfills.

Hi, it’s Colleen from Just Paint It, back with 35 Upcycled DIY Gift Ideas. This collection is guaranteed to spark your creativity to repurpose ordinary items into extraordinary gifts!

Upcycled Plant CartUpcycled Plant Cart

 


Pottery_barn_like_organizational_box
Rustic Chalkboard Wall Organizer

 

Repurposed Milk Jug TableRepurposed Milk Jug Table

 

Easy Washi Tape VasesEasy Washi Tape Vases

 

DIY Unique Wine RackDresser Turned into Wine Rack [Read more…]

DIY Log Bird Feeder

Give your feathered friends a treat from spingtime through winter. Make this easy-peasy DIY log bird feeder with one tool and a few basic materials by Prodigal Pieces for Pretty Handy Girl www.prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces

Hello PHG readers! I’m Larissa coming to share with you from my spot in the blogosphere, Prodigal Pieces, where DIY is the name of the game. Today, I’m going to show you how to create a special treat for our feathered friends. The best part is that this can be a family fun activity to do AND to give as a gift (think Christmas).

We are avid bird lovers in our home and were delighted when a friend of mine gave us this bird feeder made from a piece of firewood and rope. How easy is that?

Give your feathered friends a treat from spingtime through winter. Make this easy-peasy DIY log bird feeder with one tool and a few basic materials by Prodigal Pieces for Pretty Handy Girl www.prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces

What a delight it is too see our tree clinging birds (nuthatches, tufted titmice, and woodpeckers) come for a visit and see their excitement at the treat they’ve found, especially the birds that overwinter. Did you know that migratory birds will remember your home the next time they’re passing through and will come back again year after year if you continue to provide nourishment for them? It’s like a reunion each spring and winter. Fun!

So, lets grab some materials and get ready to create!

Give your feathered friends a treat from spingtime through winter. Make this easy-peasy DIY log bird feeder with one tool and a few basic materials by Prodigal Pieces for Pretty Handy Girl www.prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces

Materials:
(contains some affiliate links)

We are blessed, in my opinion, to have a fireplace,  so we always have a stash of firewood on hand. For your log, you can use a downed branch or head to your own stash to grab a piece of wood.

Give your feathered friends a treat from spingtime through winter. Make this easy-peasy DIY log bird feeder with one tool and a few basic materials by Prodigal Pieces for Pretty Handy Girl www.prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces

The tree-clingers prefer a chunky bark, but most any tree variety will do.

Give your feathered friends a treat from spingtime through winter. Make this easy-peasy DIY log bird feeder with one tool and a few basic materials by Prodigal Pieces for Pretty Handy Girl www.prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces

Clamp your log and keep your hand clear from the drill bit. Wear appropriate eye protection.

Give your feathered friends a treat from spingtime through winter. Make this easy-peasy DIY log bird feeder with one tool and a few basic materials by Prodigal Pieces for Pretty Handy Girl www.prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces

To start, use a 1″ spade bit to drill a hole approximately 1/2″ deep, 2 inches down from the top.

Give your feathered friends a treat from spingtime through winter. Make this easy-to-build DIY log bird feeder with one tool and a few basic materials.

Drill a second hole on the same face about 6″ below the first.

Roll the log a quarter turn and drill in the next face starting with the first hole about 5″ from the top and then a second hole 6″ below that one. (This does not have to be exact and give a more rustic feel when randomly chosen.)

Give your feathered friends a treat from spingtime through winter. Make this easy-peasy DIY log bird feeder with one tool and a few basic materials by Prodigal Pieces for Pretty Handy Girl www.prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces

Repeat those steps until you have two sets of matching faces on opposing sides.

Drill your rope hole using a 5/16″ bit. Starting on the face that has the first hole 5″ down, drill your rope hole 2″ from the top, making sure to go completely through the log.

Give your feathered friends a treat from spingtime through winter. Make this easy-peasy DIY log bird feeder with one tool and a few basic materials by Prodigal Pieces for Pretty Handy Girl www.prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces

Cut a 2′ or longer piece of rope and thread it into the hole. If you turn the rope in the direction of the braid (counter-clockwise) while inserting it, that will help the rope go through smoothly.

Give your feathered friends a treat from spingtime through winter. Make this easy-peasy DIY log bird feeder with one tool and a few basic materials by Prodigal Pieces for Pretty Handy Girl www.prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces

Once through, tie the rope in a basic knot.

Give your feathered friends a treat from spingtime through winter. Make this easy-peasy DIY log bird feeder with one tool and a few basic materials by Prodigal Pieces for Pretty Handy Girl www.prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces

On to the fun part! Birds burn a ton of protein flitting about, so they need to store up as much as they can. We prefer to use a chunky peanut butter and then roll it in seeds like this.

Give your feathered friends a treat from spingtime through winter. Make this easy-peasy DIY log bird feeder with one tool and a few basic materials by Prodigal Pieces for Pretty Handy Girl www.prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces

Grab a tablespoon of peanut butter and place it in a bowl of bird seed.

Give your feathered friends a treat from spingtime through winter. Make this easy-peasy DIY log bird feeder with one tool and a few basic materials by Prodigal Pieces for Pretty Handy Girl www.prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces

Then sprinkle the peanuter butter with seed.

Give your feathered friends a treat from spingtime through winter. Make this easy-peasy DIY log bird feeder with one tool and a few basic materials by Prodigal Pieces for Pretty Handy Girl www.prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces

After coating with the seed, press the mixture into the holes using the back of a spoon, or if you’re nutty like me (catch the pun?) it’s more fun to use your fingers.

Give your feathered friends a treat from spingtime through winter. Make this easy-peasy DIY log bird feeder with one tool and a few basic materials by Prodigal Pieces for Pretty Handy Girl www.prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces

The kids love this part!

Give your feathered friends a treat from spingtime through winter. Make this easy-peasy DIY log bird feeder with one tool and a few basic materials by Prodigal Pieces for Pretty Handy Girl www.prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces

You’re done and it’s ready to hang. Yay!

Give your feathered friends a treat from spingtime through winter. Make this easy-peasy DIY log bird feeder with one tool and a few basic materials by Prodigal Pieces for Pretty Handy Girl www.prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpieces

For a fun twist, and if you’re feeling handy, you could also add dowels for other species to be able to roost at each hole, but for this project I kept it simple.

Got questions? Please feel free to ask. Also, come say “Hi!” I’d love for you to come visit me over at my blog.

If you enjoyed this project, do pin and share!

Give your feathered friends a treat from spingtime through winter. Make this easy-peasy DIY log bird feeder with one tool and a few basic materials by Prodigal Pieces for Pretty Handy Girl www.prodigalpieces.com #prodigalpiecesblog signature copy
~learn more about Larissa~

 

How to Make a Headboard Bench

my-repurposed-life-navy-blue-small-headboard-bench

Today’s Rockstar is one of the bloggers that I aspired to be when I started blogging. This gal truly paved the way for DIY Bloggers. Gail is here to show us how to make a headboard bench. Watch closely as she deftly converts an old headboard into a cozy entryway bench.

Gail is the rockstar behind the wildly famous My Repurposed Life! She has the ability to see beyond the ugly junk and trashed items on the curb. She has a way of seeing the beauty in all of it!

Rockstar DIY Series

I hear the sounds of hammering, Gail is ready to take the stage! Give it up for this rockstar!

page_break_2

Hi there Pretty Handy Girl readers. I am so happy to be here, because I’m a huge fan of Brittany. I’ve followed her blog for a long, long, time.

I’m Gail from My Repurposed Life. If you don’t know me, the blog name sort of gives it away. I mostly blog about repurposing items; saving them from the landfill; and giving them a new purpose in life. Many people who find me through Google, do so by looking for headboard benches. It’s pretty much what I’m known for. Today, I’m going to share one of my all-time favorite headboard benches with you.

my-repurposed-life-small-entryway-bench

A supply and tool list is at the bottom for your reference.

bunk bed

I got two sets of these bunk beds for a steal at a thrift store. They’re not typical of the headboards I normally pick up—I prefer larger headboards.

You can see the piece in the back is slightly larger than the one in the front. That identifies it as the headboard.

twin-bench

You can see the headboard is in tact, but the foot board was cut on the miter saw right above the brace, leaving the top half of the foot board for another project.  At this point you decide how deep you want the seat of your bench to be.

kreg-pocket-holes

I used scrap 1×4’s for the side that connects the headboard to the foot board. All of my boards are secured using a Kreg Jig and pocket hole screws.

side-skirting

See how easy? the bench is already formed with a few simple steps, you could stop right here and add a seat. However, I knew I wanted to do a little something extra for this petite bench. [Read more…]

Upcycled Magnetic Chalkboard Frame

Upcycled Magnetic Chalkboard Frame | Pretty Handy Girl

Earlier in the week, I showed you the changes I made in my oldest son’s bedroom. One of the switches I made was to replace his bedroom door (tutorial to come) because the old one had cracked after one too many slammings. Ugh, cheap hollow door.

In an effort to keep my son from taping all types of signs to his new door, I found an ugly old frame and married it with some scrap metal from a junky set of shelving a neighbor was throwing away. That’s not real wood, it’s metal…fake wood metal. Yuck.

metal-shelves

But, I salvaged the shelves and cut the edges off with tin snips when I realized they were magnetic. And for some reason (beyond my understanding) I had an ugly frame laying around.

Upcycled Magnetic Chalkboard Frame | Pretty Handy Girl

Wait until you see how they were transformed. You won’t believe your eyes, so watch closely how I made this Upcycled Magnetic Chalkboard Frame:

Materials:

Upcycled Magnetic Chalkboard Frame | Pretty Handy Girl

  • Old frame
  • Tin snips
  • Sheet metal
  • Moulding
  • Pencil
  • Sanding block or sander
  • Wood glue
  • Wet wipe
  • Clamps
  • D-hooks for hanging
  • Chalkboard paint
  • Foam brush
  • Miter Saw

Optional: You may need some Goo Gone, a scraper and rag to eliminate any glue on the back of the frame.

Instructions:

Begin by cutting your metal to fit into the back of the frame.

Upcycled Magnetic Chalkboard Frame | Pretty Handy Girl

Paint one side of the metal with chalkboard paint. Apply two coats of paint and season with chalk. [Read more…]

Easy Clipboard Stand

Easy Clipboard Stand | Pretty Handy Girl

Today’s project is so easy, I named it the Easy Clipboard Stand (catchy name, no?) This is a great way to upcycle an old clipboard and a scrap 2×4. This clipboard stand is super versatile. It can be used as a traditional stand for announcements; a copy stand; a recipe holder; an art frame or anything you need to bring attention to. Plus, if you use a dark chalk paint color, it can be used as a chalkboard sign. Bonus.

Materials:
(contains affiliate links)

Tools:

Instructions:

Cut the 2×4 scrap to the same width as the clipboard. Set your table saw blade approximately 2/3 height of the 2×4 block. Angle the blade to 15 degrees. Carefully slide the block over the blade. You’ll notice I use a GRR-Ripper Push Block to keep my hands away from the blade. (If you own a table saw, you need one of these!)

Easy Clipboard Stand | Pretty Handy Girl

The 2×4 should look like the photo below.  [Read more…]

DIY Kids Scooter

 

kids scooters title

Looking for a quick and easy DIY kids toy you can make at home?  Let’s make kids scooters!  Hello Pretty Handy Readers I’m Jaime from That’s My Letter here to share how to make these DIY Kids Scooters using scrap wood and a few hardware bits.

kids scooter action

My 9 year old daughter is here giving the scooter a whirl and she fits fine but it’s really my 7 year old boy who loves the scooters.  (Unfortunately, I don’t have a picture of him on a scooter, but you’ll have to trust me.)  I would say this DIY toy is aimed at kids 8 and younger as they especially love pushing each other on the scooters!

kids scooter detail

If you happen to have a piece of 2×12 scrap wood lying around then this project was made for you.  The chunky 1 1/2″ thick material is solid and sturdy and can be painted any color you choose.

kids scooters 1

Materials:

  • 1 – 2×12 @ 11 1/4″ (must be a square, measure your 2×12 first, some are 11 1/8″w)
  • 4 rotating casters (2″ wheels)
  • 2 handles
  • jigsaw
  • sandpaper
  • drill
  • 1 1/4″ self tapping screws
  • measuring tape &  pencil
  • curved object (small paint can)
  • paint

 

kids scooter sketch

Instructions: [Read more…]

Make Your Own Clock Sign

Make Your Own Clock Sign | Pretty Handy Girl

Making a clock is an easy project. All you need is a flat surface that you can drill a hole into and BOOM, you can make a clock. Let’s get started and I’ll show you How to Make Your Own Clock Sign.

Materials:

Make Your Own Clock Sign | Pretty Handy Girl

  • Chalkboard sign (I purchased this chalkboard sign at Tuesday Morning.)
  • Clock mechanism
  • Ruler
  • Drill
  • Drill bit
  • Chalk
  • Damp rag
  • Vinyl lettering and numbers
  • Plate or circle template

Instructions:

Use a ruler to mark the center of your chalkboard sign near the top. (Center from the sides and use the same measurement down from the top for a balanced look.)

Make Your Own Clock Sign | Pretty Handy Girl

Use a plate or circle template to trace a circle for the clock face.

Make Your Own Clock Sign | Pretty Handy Girl

Disassemble the clock hands and parts. Lay them out in the order you removed them.

Make Your Own Clock Sign | Pretty Handy Girl

Insert the clock mechanism through the back of the hole. [Read more…]

Upcycled Cabinet Door Chalkboard Art

Upcycled Cabinet Door Quote Art | Pretty Handy Girl

What do you do with an old cabinet door? Besides keep it with your wood scraps for ten years like I did (not recommended.) You can create pre-framed art! Today I have an easy Upcycled Cabinet Door Chalkboard Art project for you. If you have an old cabinet door, some paint, and a stencil, you can have yourself a unique and personalized art piece for your wall! Easy art!

Materials:

Upcycled Cabinet Door Quote Art | Pretty Handy Girl

  • Cabinet door
  • Chalkboard paint
  • Foam brush
  • Sandpaper
  • Antiquing wax
  • Wax brush
  • Clean rag
  • Craft paint or chalky paint
  • Stencil brush
  • Painter’s Tape
  • Pencil
  • Stencil or cut vinyl

Optional: Stain and foam brush

Instructions:

Paint the inside panel of your cabinet door with chalkboard paint. After the paint has dried, lightly sand any imperfections. Apply a second coat, brushing the paint in the opposite direction as the first coat.

Upcycled Cabinet Door Quote Art | Pretty Handy Girl

If you have an unstained cabinet door, you may want to stain it for an aged look.

Upcycled Cabinet Door Quote Art | Pretty Handy Girl

Apply painter’s tape to the inside face of the cabinet door.

Upcycled Cabinet Door Quote Art | Pretty Handy Girl

Paint the frame portion of the cabinet door. Allow to dry and apply a second coat of paint. [Read more…]

DIY Feather Art

DIY Feather Art | Pretty Handy Girl

When I needed an extra piece of art for our living room gallery wall I created DIY Feather Art. You can create your own, but please purchase craft feathers, use fake feathers or paper feathers. (Per the Migratory Bird Treaty Act, it is illegal to collect feathers, nests and other anatomical parts of certain migratory birds.)

Materials:

DIY Feather Art | Pretty Handy Girl

  • Rustic 1×4″ boards (I used pallet wood)
  • Wood yardstick or lattice boards
  • Watered down white paint
  • Paint brush
  • Clamp
  • Scissors
  • Kreg Jig
  • Pocket hole screws (1.25″)
  • Nylon line
  • Small drill bit
  • Drill
  • Staple gun
  • 1″ finish nails
  • Hammer or nailgun
  • Wood glue
  • Feathers
  • Pencil
  • D-ring picture hangers

Instructions:

Cut your 1×4″ boards to size (or select one board the size you want for your art background.) To connect the two boards, mark the location to drill pocket holes.

DIY Feather Art | Pretty Handy Girl

Use the Kreg Jig to drill pocket holes into the back of both boards.

DIY Feather Art | Pretty Handy Girl

Clamp the boards together and join them with 1 1/4″ pocket hole screws.

DIY Feather Art | Pretty Handy Girl

Flip the board over and paint it with watered down white paint for a white-washed look.

DIY Feather Art | Pretty Handy Girl

Mark the width of the white-washed board onto the yardstick. Cut two pieces the same length. [Read more…]

Little Playhouse for Ollie {Mystery Thrift Off}

Little Playhouse | Pretty Handy Girl

I love giving my boys creative freedom on projects. Frequently I let them have access to my scrap pile. Inevitably they build little houses for their stuffed animals. This little house was designed and painted by my 8 year old for Ollie (his little stuffed octopus.) I helped him build it. If you want to build a little playhouse for your child to paint, follow along.

Before we begin, I need to back up and tell you that this project is part of The Mystery Thrift Off.

#TheMysteryThriftOff is the brainchild of Lindsey from Better After. She chose a handful of people to take part in this challenge. After scouring her local thrift shops for ugly and hopeless items, she shipped off the chosen items to those of us in the challenge. I signed up—because frankly—I love a challenge. And, I love saving ugly items from the landfill. Be sure to see some of the other Mystery Thrift Off transformations at Better After and vote for your favorite.

But, when the box arrived from Lindsey, I was terrified to open it up! I mean what if she had sent me a ceramic scabies bear!  Yikes. You can imagine my relief when I opened the box to reveal this dated Christmas village.

Chalkboard Arrow Sign (Mystery Thrift Off) | Pretty Handy Girl

Not too bad looking is it.? Truth be told, it was falling apart and the colors were hunter green, colonial blue, mauve and fleshy tan.

Chalkboard Arrow Sign (Mystery Thrift Off) | Pretty Handy Girl

I quickly pulled the three houses apart and began to transform them into A Chalkboard Arrow Sign, a Housewarming Gift Caddy and the Little Playhouse I’m going to show you today.

I began by removing some of the embellishments.

Little Playhouse | Pretty Handy Girl

I saved them for a future project.

Chalkboard Arrow Sign (Mystery Thrift Off) | Pretty Handy Girl

Next I sanded off the glue.

Little Playhouse | Pretty Handy Girl

Here’s where you can pick up the tutorial. Start by cutting a house shape into a piece of plywood or scrap wood. Cut out a doorway (the Dremel Multi-Max worked perfect for this task.)

Little Playhouse | Pretty Handy Girl

Flip the house shape over and attach hinges to one side of the door and the house.

Little Playhouse | Pretty Handy Girl

Cut two pieces for the sides of the house (1″ x 4″ lumber) and a back piece the same height as the house front.

Little Playhouse | Pretty Handy Girl

Clamp the back of the house to a solid surface and attach the sides of the house with glue and finish nails. [Read more…]

Housewarming Gift Caddy {Mystery Thrift Off}

Housewarming Gift Crate | Pretty Handy Girl

Do you have a new neighbor or know someone who just moved? It’s time to celebrate with them by giving them a housewarming gift caddy! This is an easy gift tote that you can customize to any size you like. Plus, the recipient can use the caddy for storage or display after the gift has been enjoyed.

Before we begin, I need to back up and tell you that this project is part of The Mystery Thrift Off.

#TheMysteryThriftOff is the brainchild of Lindsey from Better After. She chose a handful of people to take part in this challenge. After scouring her local thrift shops for ugly and hopeless items, she shipped off the chosen items to those of us in the challenge. I signed up—because frankly—I love a challenge. And, I love saving ugly items from the landfill. Be sure to see some of the other Mystery Thrift Off transformations at Better After and vote for your favorite.

But, when the box arrived from Lindsey, I was terrified to open it up! I mean what if she had sent me a ceramic scabies bear!  Yikes. You can imagine my relief when I opened the box to reveal this dated Christmas village.

Chalkboard Arrow Sign (Mystery Thrift Off) | Pretty Handy Girl

Not too bad looking is it.? Truth be told, it was falling apart and the colors were hunter green, colonial blue, mauve and fleshy tan.

Chalkboard Arrow Sign (Mystery Thrift Off) | Pretty Handy Girl

I quickly pulled the three houses apart and began to transform them into A Chalkboard Arrow Sign, a Little Playhouse and the Housewarming Gift Caddy I’m going to show you today.

Before I got started, I removed some nails from the house on the right. And then I was ready to get building.

Housewarming Gift Crate | Pretty Handy Girl

Ready to create your own caddy? Let’s get to it.

Materials:

  • 1″ x 6″ board
  • Wood glue
  • Finish nails
  • 1″ x 1″ square dowel
  • 1/2″ lattice trim (or other decorative trim)
  • 2″ screws
  • Spray primer
  • Paint (used Botanical Home Decor Paint)
  • Craft paint
  • Paintbrushes
  • Patch-plus-primer
  • Putty knife
  • Sandpaper

Instructions:

Cut the 1″ x 6″ into 5 pieces:

Housewarming Gift Crate | Pretty Handy Girl

  • 2 – 6″ x 15″sides
  • 1 – 6″ x 15″ base
  • 2 – 6″ x 11″ front & back pieces with a 45 degree corners cut into the tops

Add a line of glue along the bottom of the front and back of the caddy.  Attach them to the base with finish nails.

Housewarming Gift Crate | Pretty Handy Girl

Add a line of glue to cut ends of the sides and add a line of glue to the bottom of the sides.  Attach the front to the sides with finish nails. Repeat for the back piece.

Housewarming Gift Crate | Pretty Handy Girl

Attach the sides by nailing through the bottom and into the sides.

Housewarming Gift Crate | Pretty Handy Girl

Pre-drill a hole into each end of the 1″ x 1″ square dowel. Attach the square dowel to the top of the front and back pieces with the 2″ screws.

Housewarming Gift Crate | Pretty Handy Girl

The completely assembled crate should look like this:

Housewarming Gift Crate | Pretty Handy Girl

Spray the caddy with spray primer inside and out.

Housewarming Gift Crate | Pretty Handy Girl

Paint caddy with a solid color first. (I used a new paint and love the texture and coverage. Botanicals Home Decor Paint in Peony went on smoothly like chalky paints.)

Housewarming Gift Crate | Pretty Handy Girl

Use the craft paints to paint details like windows, shutters and a door onto the front of the caddy. If you’re feeling truly artistic, you can paint the back too.

Housewarming Gift Crate | Pretty Handy Girl

Nail the lattice trim pieces to the sides of the caddy for a little decoration.

Housewarming Gift Crate | Pretty Handy Girl

Putty all nail holes.

Housewarming Gift Crate | Pretty Handy Girl

Sand the putty smooth after it has dried. Touch up paint the putty holes.

Housewarming Gift Crate | Pretty Handy Girl

Fill your caddy with wine, flowers, food or other goodies to celebrate the new homeowners.

Housewarming Gift Crate | Pretty Handy Girl

The recipient will be tickled pink. Haha, get it, a little pink house?

PHGFancySign

Chalkboard Arrow Sign {Mystery Thrift Off}

Chalkboard Arrow Sign (Mystery Thrift Off) | Pretty Handy Girl

Are you having a yard sale, a lemonade stand or an open house? This Chalkboard Arrow Sign is an easy DIY project that will bring more attention to your event.

But, let me back up to explain exactly how this Chalkboard Arrow Sign came to be. Have you been following #TheMysteryThriftOff challenge? This is the brainchild of Lindsey from Better After. She chose a handful of people to take part in this challenge. After scouring her local thrift shops for ugly and hopeless items, she shipped off the chosen items to those of us in the challenge. I signed up—because frankly—I love a challenge. And, I love saving ugly items from the landfill. This week she’ll be revealing all the Mystery Thrift Off participants transformations and you can vote on your favorite!

But, when the box arrived from Lindsey, I was terrified to open it up! I mean what if she had sent me a ceramic scabies bear!  Yikes. You can imagine my relief when I opened the box to reveal this dated Christmas village.

Chalkboard Arrow Sign (Mystery Thrift Off) | Pretty Handy Girl

Not too bad looking is it.? Truth be told, it was falling apart and the colors were hunter green, colonial blue, mauve and fleshy tan.

Chalkboard Arrow Sign (Mystery Thrift Off) | Pretty Handy Girl

I flipped it over to reveal that this was the fine art of Ms. Debbie Mumm in 1999. And someone paid $24.99 for it! I certainly hope Lindsey didn’t spend that much. I think 1999 is calling and they want their village back.

Chalkboard Arrow Sign (Mystery Thrift Off) | Pretty Handy Girl

I’ll quickly show you how I transformed this village and then we’ll get to the tutorial for how you can make your own Chalkboard Arrow Sign.

The hinges were easy removed from between the houses. I kept them for another project.

Chalkboard Arrow Sign (Mystery Thrift Off) | Pretty Handy Girl

The wooden embellishments were popped off with a pry bar.

Chalkboard Arrow Sign (Mystery Thrift Off) | Pretty Handy Girl

I also saved these embellishments for a future project.

Chalkboard Arrow Sign (Mystery Thrift Off) | Pretty Handy Girl

To create the arrow shape, I chose the middle tall building and cut off the chimney with my Dremel Multi-max.

Chalkboard Arrow Sign (Mystery Thrift Off) | Pretty Handy Girl

Here’s where you can pick up the tutorial. :-)

Materials:

  • 9″ x 14″ piece of smooth plywood, masonite or wood board
  • Jigsaw
  • Sander
  • Valspar Gray Spray Primer
  • Chalkboard paint
  • Foam roller
  • Chalk Ink
  • 1″ x 1″ square garden stake (look in the garden section of Lowe’s)
  • Finish Nails
  • Wood glue

Instructions:

Print out the Chalkboard Arrow Template. It should fit on a legal sheet of paper. Cut out the template and transfer the shape to your wood.

Use a jigsaw to cut out the shape. Sand any rough edges from your plywood. [Read more…]

File Cabinet Makeover Using Chalk Paint

File Cabinet Makeover Using Chalk Paint

Hey there everyone!  I’m working in my craft room to give it a major overhaul and make it a much more functional and creative space.  It also doubles as an office that I share with my husband.  It’s not always the easiest thing to do, partly because of a lack of organization. One of the biggest projects we’re taking on is completely making over the closet.  I’ve already replaced the closet doors with curtains and I love how much easier it has made it to get to things in the closet.

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This file cabinet is one of the things that goes in that closet.  When we finish making over the closet, it will be moved to a more prominent location that will be more visible, especially if the curtains are left open.  Because of that, I decided that the boring beige color had to go and I gave it a quick and SUPER cheap makeover!

Here’s what you’ll need to do this project yourself!

Materials:

Instructions:

Unless you plan on painting it, you want to remove all of the hardware off of your file cabinet.  I wasn’t quite sure how this would go, but it was extremely easy to remove everything.  Just a couple of bolts and I was pretty much done!

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To protect the inside of the cabinet from overspray or paint dripping through, cover all of the holes from the inside using masking or painter’s tape.

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Time to mix your chalk paint.  What I love so much about BB Frösch Chalk Paint Powder is that there’s virtually no waste.  You mix as you go.  I like using the sample-sized paint containers because they’re cheap and if it’s a project where I’m not sure how much paint I’ll need, at least I know I won’t go way over by buying a quart.  The other amazing thing is that there’s virtually no prep work.

Wipe down the file cabinet with a wet cloth and that is it!

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If you choose to paint your cabinet using a roller or paint brush, you can get started from this point.  If you plan to use a paint sprayer, you’ll need to prep the paint.  First and foremost, strain your paint!  Lowe’s sells little cone paint strainers (they look like coffee filters) for $.98 a four pack.  Once your paint is strained, you need to thin it with water.  The HomeRight paint sprayer that I use comes with everything you need to do this, plus great instructions. [Read more…]

How to Build a Temporary Pergola

Build a Temporary Pergola with Trellises | Pretty Handy Girl

This tutorial to build a temporary pergola is perfect for a wedding, photo shoot, for some shade, or for your garden if you are okay with it not lasting forever.

My sister and I constructed it for our Thompson’s WaterSeal Bali Dream Deck to provide some romance and shade from the hot Bali sun.

Bali Dream Deck for Thompsons Water Seal | Pretty Handy Girl

Materials:

Build a Temporary Pergola with Trellises | Pretty Handy Girl

  • 2 Trellises (with double vertical construction)
  • 1 Trellis
  • 4 – 2 1/2″ wood screws
  • Drill bit
  • Drill
  • Clamps

Optional:

Instructions: 

Dry fit your trellis pieces together to create the pergola shape. Make note of where the top trellis intersects with the two side pieces.

Build a Temporary Pergola with Trellises | Pretty Handy Girl

Pre-drill holes through the top trellis piece at the four intersecting points.

Build a Temporary Pergola with Trellises | Pretty Handy Girl

Pre-drill holes into the top outer pieces of the vertical side trellises (where they meet the top trellis.) [Read more…]

Build a Vintage Produce Crate Centerpiece – No Power Tools!

How to Build a Rustic Crate Centerpiece (No Power Tools Needed!) #DIYCourage | Pretty Handy Girl

It occurred to me the other day that many woodworking projects may deter people simply because they don’t have power tools or they don’t know how to use them yet. As a continuation of my goal to spread some #DIYCourage, Duluth Trading Company and I have teamed up to give you an easy tutorial to Build a Vintage Produce Crate Centerpiece using no power tools whatsoever!

Materials:
(contains affiliate links)

How to Build a Rustic Crate Centerpiece (No Power Tools Needed!) #DIYCourage | Pretty Handy Girl

Optional: 

Instructions:

I happen to stumble across this vintage produce crate and vintage bottles that a neighbor was giving away. If you don’t have a neighbor who periodically gives away vintage produce crates, you can ask your local grocery store for produce crates you can salvage. Or you can purchase a produce crate on Amazon.

How to Build a Rustic Crate Centerpiece (No Power Tools Needed!) #DIYCourage | Pretty Handy Girl

The crate I had was very rustic. So rustic, that I was able to pull the bottom slats off the crate with my bare hands. (In hindsight, I should have been wearing my gloves to avoid splinters.)

How to Build a Rustic Crate Centerpiece (No Power Tools Needed!) #DIYCourage | Pretty Handy Girl

You can also use a handsaw to remove the slats. Set them aside for use later.

How to Build a Rustic Crate Centerpiece (No Power Tools Needed!) #DIYCourage | Pretty Handy Girl

After removing the slats, pry up the nails with a prybar. Be sure to wear gloves to protect your hands. You can try wiggling stubborn nails out with the needle-nosed pliers. [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.

Materials:
(contains some affiliate links)

Optional:

Instructions:

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…]