Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Spray Painted Tree Stumps Turned Side Tables and Video Segment

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So, let's talk tree stumps. Why would you want a big log sitting in your house? What's the big allure? They are so unique! You can't go buy them at a big box store, or even most furniture stores for that matter. And it's not every day that you go and walk into some one's house that has a tree stump sitting in their living room :) You have no idea how many compliments I get on my tree stump coffee table. It's a great conversation piece. And they are cheap! The cheapest piece of furniture I own. Not to mention that they look like a piece from West Elm that goes for $250 :)

So, yesterday I had a great opportunity to participate in our local lifestyle TV show's Spray-off Series where they challenged me to spray paint some stumps....featuring these beauties:
Spray Painted Tree Stumps Turned Side Tables -post shows how to pick your wood and where!

Spray Painted Tree Stumps Turned Side Tables -post shows how to pick your wood and where!

Now, I was concerned about how spray painting tree stumps would really work out. Really concerned. I painted the heck out of the coffee table that I made out of 3 tree stumps back in the day.
Spray Painted Tree Stumps Turned Side Tables -post shows how to pick your wood and where!

...like slathered layers and layers of paint on them, and they still look great! But, I was really worried about how spray paint would take. As you all know, wood absorbs and absorbs everything. Especially paint. So, I seriously went out and bought like 5 cans of spray paint for one stump :) Luckily, I didn't need that much. It turned out better than I had thought. Score for spray paint and tree stump lovers!

Spray Painted Tree Stumps Turned Side Tables -post shows how to pick your wood and where!

Next up. Where do you get your tree stumps if you don't have a pile sitting in your backyard? Check the classifieds! It's that easy. So many people are trying to get rid of old wood from a dead tree or selling firewood. If they are selling firewood, more than likely they got that firewood from a stump ;) So, ask if they have some stumps still lying around. Or if you are up to it, travel around where there are some farms and large lots of land. More than likely you'll see piles of stumps. Knock on the door and see if they would sell some to you...or give you some :) Or you can call some tree movers. I found my stumps on the lot of a local tree removal service.
Spray Painted Tree Stumps Turned Side Tables -post shows how to pick your wood and where!

When you find your stumps, you want to make sure they are seasoned. That means they should be pretty white and dried out. If they have bark on them, it should come off really easily. More than likely when you peel the bark off, it'll be wet underneath, so you'll have to sit it back out in the sun for a few more days to dry out. You can see here the difference between the seasoned and dried out stump compared to the one that's bark was just removed...super wet.Spray Painted Tree Stumps Turned Side Tables -post shows how to pick your wood and where!

To remove the bark, just get peel it off, or get the end of a hammer and pry it off. It should be relatively easy. If it's not, your stump isn't ready.
Spray Painted Tree Stumps Turned Side Tables -post shows how to pick your wood and where!

So, now something we don't like talking about, but if you find a stump with bark on it,  it may also have mold on it under the bark. Super gross, especially if you are bringing it into your house. The longer stump had a ton of bark on it, so I removed the bark and then had it sit out in the sun for another few days to dry out. I then removed most of the mold by sanding it down. Make sure to wear all proper safety equipment when you do this -mask, glasses, body suite if you must lol. Just remember it's organic material and natural in nature :) If you still are concerned, go to this site here to learn how to remove it more vigorously. To possibly eliminate this problem all together just pick a piece of wood that isn't on the bottom of a pile or covered up or that looks nasty :)

Once you have all the bark removed or if you are lucky and found a stump with no bark, start standing. I used 60 grit sandpaper...the super rough kind...to get rid of a lot of the random pointy areas and the saw marks. This will make it super smooth.
Spray Painted Tree Stumps Turned Side Tables -post shows how to pick your wood and where!

Now time to prime! If you are painting the stump a light color, such as white, you'll want to use the Kilz primer and yes, they make it in spray paint form :) This will help block the inevitable yellow stains from showing through your top finish. If you aren't concerned, then go for the cheap primer cuz you're going to have to use about two cans or so.
Spray Painted Tree Stumps Turned Side Tables -post shows how to pick your wood and where!

Now finish it off with a top coat! For the gold one, I just chose Gold from Krylon.

For the white and turquoise one, I first sprayed the top coat of white around the whole base and then taped off around the top edge.
Spray Painted Tree Stumps Turned Side Tables -post shows how to pick your wood and where!
I then just painted the top with turquoise from Rustoleum.

You'll learn quickly that when people cut trees, they don't have side tables or coffee tables in mind and they will be lopsided. If you find some that you really like that are lopsided, like this one:

Spray Painted Tree Stumps Turned Side Tables -post shows how to pick your wood and where!
So, just put them up on some casters. The casters that will work best are the ones that screw in themselves, like these:
Screw some in all the way and some out a little more until you get a level surface. The next best thing about casters? It makes these 200+ pound behemoths easy to move for us weak folk :)

If you got a good piece that doesn't need leveling, but still want casters, save yourself some time and just buy the ones that you can put screws into instead :)
Spray Painted Tree Stumps Turned Side Tables -post shows how to pick your wood and where!
And there you go! This is a long post, but it doesn't really take too many steps to get your stumps turned into a side table. And they are relatively easy steps, especially if you don't have to deal with bark or mold.
Spray Painted Tree Stumps Turned Side Tables -post shows how to pick your wood and where!

The best things about stumps? They are so customizable...even though they really are just a big hunk of wood. You can find them in varying widths; make them any height you want and any color you want. And if you are completely against painting wood, you can easily stop at the sanding, and just put a clear top coat over it instead.
Spray Painted Tree Stumps Turned Side Tables -post shows how to pick your wood and where!

Here's the video segment for you all to enjoy :) It went a lot worse in my head so I'm glad it turned out somewhat decent lol

Friday, September 19, 2014

Painting the kitchen white

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This probably isn't what half of you thought about when you read the title :) You probably thought my cabinets were going to be painted white. I have decided to do everything I can to brighten up the kitchen without painting the cabinets. The cabinets will be the last thing to do...and that's if the hubs lets me do them. While painting the kitchen walls, he finally told me what he really thought about painting the cabinets. And he is so against painting them that he would rather buy new stainless steal appliances instead. That's like $7,000 worth of hate towards painting the cabinets lol. So...we'll see if that really ever happens ;) I don't know, maybe I'm crazy, but I'm more for painting the cabinets, which may cost a couple hundred, rather than spend thousands.
Anyway. This project was quite the feat to do while pregnant. I'm just super lucky I didn't get too sore of a back from it. Painting the ceiling and the walls above the cabinets was super fun :) I thought this would be so easy to do  since there wasn't a lot of wall. Ummm. Nope. Wrongo. The only way this got done was doing a few sections at a time.

It has made quite a difference. It's so much brighter in here. But truth be told...now the cabinets drive me more nuts. So, it didn't help. Yes, it brightened it up, but it also made the cabinet color stand out that much more for me.
As I was painting, I was thinking more and more about possibly staining the cabinets an ash brown. But realized that might look ridiculous with the black granite. What do you think? It won't be too dark of a brown...just a medium. Kind of like this:
 
I'm not sure if that's going to be more work..probably. But at least it would keep the character of the wood.

I also decided to change out the light switch plates for some stainless steal ones. This made a great difference. Not brightness-wise, but style-wise.

Here's the before of the kitchen. Before the change of blinds, roman shade and painting.
And now:

A little difference. The best difference is at night when everything isn't cast in a yellow haze anymore like it used to be. It's just super nice and bright :)

You can see how dark the walls and ceiling used to be when you look at the paint in the herringbone pattern. Crazy how dark that really was huh?
Next up? Big plans for that little island! I'm so excited to get started! :)

Oh, and since I usually get paint color questions, the paint I used is Glidden's Pebble White in Eggshell. It's not super white like the Linen White I usually use; it has the perfect amount of cream in it. Love it. And it goes with my baseboards too so I don't have to waste time painting them :)

Monday, September 15, 2014

Model Home Monday {UV Parade of Homes #26}

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Happy Monday! This weeks home tour is beautiful...and huge! Like over 16,000 square feet huge. Like indoor gym, spa, and theatre room huge. Like two-story complete town play house huge. Get my point? lol And you can have it all for $2.5 million :) It has 7 bedrooms and 9 bathrooms.
Enjoy!

Front room/office:
 Living room: check out the scale of this fireplace!
 And the mill-work on these walls. Amazing.
 I like this view since it gives you a good idea of how to break up a large room into little conversation zones.
 The in-kitchen dining area:
 The kitchen: This kitchen was a ton bigger than this, just couldn't get any good pictures :(
 The formal dining:
 Master bedroom:

 Master bathroom:

 Guest bedroom:
 Guest bedroom:
 Guest bedroom:
 Girls bedroom:
 Girls bathroom:
 Boys bedroom:
 Girls bedroom:
 Girls bathroom:
 Basement living area:

 Basement kitchen:
 Candy bar...and the thing of my husbands desire..and envy :)
 The theatre:
 Cute idea for under stairs:
 The most amazing laundry room you'll ever see:
 Mud room:
 And the 2 story play house that pretty much took up a whole wing of this house:
 The amazing backyard:
 And the house itself!
How would it be living so large? I don't know if I could keep up with cleaning all these rooms...let alone ever find my child. She would be forever lost in the playhouse lol.

Credits:
Builder: McEwan Custom Homes
Interior design: Detailed Design
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