Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Another DIY post. (You sick of these yet?)

So Satchel needed a dresser.

Dressers are expensive.   Well designed dressers are expensive.

So I went to the garage to see what I could come up with. I have had some luck with a Bassinet, and a Crib, so my confidence was relatively high.

We were inspired by a lot of things, but needed to keep a similar theme to the Lacquer White and Walnut of the Crib, and so that is where we started.

I wish that I had a picture of my garage, because is not what you would imagine. It is a single car, detached garage, with just about everything that we own (that we can't find a place for) in it. I am not known for my organization, and many times have had to sort through sawdust to find a router bit, or anything with ink in it to make a mark on something. I won't go into how many fingernail marks, key marks, or even the always accurate "stare at the mark while you walk to the table saw to cut it" mark.  The fact that anything can be produced in that garage, is maybe my most impressive feat. I am always so envious of the perfectly organized workshop that I see in well produced youtube or woodworking site videos.

Anyway. Here we go.

The finished Product, (in our old apartment) 
The clear-coat is less reflective in real life than it looks here.

Having never really build a dresser before, I though that it would be much harder to figure out. After a little research, it turns out that they are just boxes. 

Easy enough right. Well, kinda.

I actually tackled the drawers first, not quite knowing where you start to build a dresser.

I had some extra walnut (Solid planks) left over from the crib, so I started to hack at them a little. I cut them in half lengthwise, and widthwise, having to cut it once from the bottom, and once from the top to make two thinner widths, then cutting them in half to make roughly 4 equal pieces. I still didn't know what the drawer would look like, and how many drawers it would have at first. Then I ran the planks through a Planer to get the right thickness. 

 Once I had the three (thats what I decided on) planks for the drawers, I started to build the drawer boxes.

1/2 inch Plywood for the box, and a thin 1/4 bottom, set in a small groove cut at the bottom of all the sides.

Once they were glued and done, I moved to the mockup of the whole thing.

Flush drawer fronts? or overhang the bottom so that the drawers appear bigger?

At one point, I thought a hutch would look good. VETO.

Changing table on top? VETO

(Also, ignore the wall color. It was a test phase for us. The apartment was sold, and going to be torn down soon, so we went crazy. We liked to call this color "Jamaic-in' me nauseous." We would not recommend it.)

 How much Spacing on either side and in between drawers?

What to do for legs?

Anyway, it was about this time that I got distracted. I saw a craigslist post for a free desk, a free dresser, and a free highchair. I snatched them up for a quick turn around for some cash. A saturday of sanding and painting gave yielded us $800 dollars for the price of gas to pick the free stuff up, paint for them, and a few drawer pulls, and we sold everything within the week.

My wife's idea for the paint job on this one. Beautiful right? Sold in about 2 hours on Craigslist.

and the knobs? Anthro of course. (We did spend some cash on them though.)

Dresser? Sold in 1 day. I upholstered the chair that we also got for free, but we liked it too much to sell. We have since reupholstered in another great fabric, and it is in our sons room.

I think that good craigslist staging may be one of Whitney's greatest talents.

High Chair was also a big hit.

Also, I built a couch when I was in College. Out of boredom mostly, but also thought that it would be a good project. I really love to Sew for some reason, so it was a good project for me in that regard also. Oh, and when you are obsessed with a Skate Company (2003 I think it was) you have to sew a pillow to declare that to the world, right? 

It started like this, above,

Then morphed to this (thin arms and elevated)

Then to this, (but I ran out of steam before I could finish, and actually threw it away. It had run its course.

Anyway, back to the post. I just thought I would also chronicle the way that we operate. We don't waste many Saturdays when there are projects to do. I may be a little obsessive this way.

I decided to go big on the Drawer Glides, and bought a pair of self closing smooth operators. 

I would usually paint the inside, but I took a page out of the pro's book and just did what you would see. And, I was lazy.

With a Drawer this big, dividers were a must. (Sorry, poor lighting cell phone picture.)

A test fit after the first coat of paint was looking good.

And the drawer pulls and legs were all that was left. And remember that Hutch I was going to make?

It ended up a bookshelf.

 Trying to see what would look good in the room.

Yep, white tapered legs were the decision, and wooden drawer pulls. We were very happy with it. And now, with two boys, we are really glad they have something nice to keep their stuff in.
Now, in its current home. 
Thanks for humoring us while we try to show some of the things we love.

Friday, May 20, 2011

It's all in the details

I'm loving these stamps from The Postal Store.

We're back!

Sorry it's taken us so long! Yesterday marked six weeks since sweet Eero was born. We couldn't be more in love with him. I've started two new projects and am back in the swing of things. I even got in a jog and a shower yesterday morning! Small things are big deals these days.

Today I was thinking about all the filler furniture. The pieces that don't scream you but are necessary for the function of the room. Don't spend a lot on those. I think West Elm is one of the best places to find great, modern filler furniture for a great price.

*filler furniture to me is a simple, modern desk. Maybe you don't have two thousand saved up for your dream desk so you buy a filler piece and on top of it you put your favorite books, your favorite art above it, a great lamp and a vintage chair you found at a flea market. 

I love the idea of mixing inexpensive modern pieces with vintage finds at thrift stores and romantic florals. Then to really jazz it up, adding some great art. Even if it's your husband and son underwater at the swimming pool. Oh, and you can't forget a really great lamp.

Monday I'm going to have Kevin do a blog post on the dresser he made for Satchel. Everyone: don't be afraid. Start doing DIY projects. You can do it!