Distressed Coffee Table

Update: Check out my complete distressed coffee table tutorial here.

I’ll be the first to admit I’ve been a very, very bad blogger of late (tist, tist to me).

And whilst I wouldn’t be surprised if due to my month long hiatus there’s no-one still around here to actually be reading this right now, just in case there is, I’d like to beg forgiveness (pretty please?).

Thing is, I’ve now got just a few weeks of ‘real’ full-time work left before I begin TWELVE WHOLE WEEKS of leave prior to the baby bundle coming along and boy is my decorating ‘to-do’ list chockers!

Soooo, this means once the un-fun stuff finally starts to slow down I promise to make it all up to you. And for those who thought I’d dropped clear off the face of the earth I just wanna clarify that my intention is to keep blogging as long as I have something interesting enough to share.*

(*Disclaimer: Level of interest may be subject to reader’s enthusiasm for interior decoration :-)

Anyways, to begin my attempt at redemption I thought I’d share a coffee table makeover.

You may remember how I wrote about our new living room sofas and some associated impending updates. Well, I was originally looking for something a bit out-of-the-box and industrial in style for the coffee table though when I spotted this gem on eBay for just $25 I couldn’t say no.

Given the unorthodox shape of our living room I’d always liked the idea of something round and when I put this table in place (aside from everything being all too ‘brown’) it was just right.

A mini makeover to create some character and break-up the ‘blahness’ was all it needed so I painted the base white before heavily distressing it (by hand using a sanding block) then glazing and sealing it in one step (using a mixture of acrylic sealer and burnt umber craft paint).

The top was sanded back to raw (using an orbital sander), scuffed up just a little bit with a prick punch, hammer and heavy steel chain then stained walnut before being sealed with one coat of danish oil. Over time the danish oil will mellow and leave a lovely natural soft lustre.

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Quick and Easy Robe Door Revamp

Firstly, thanks so much to everyone for all the baby well wishes – you guys are just too sweet :-)

Now, on to some decorating stuff!!!

I wanted to finally share the little face-lift I gave my master bedroom built-in robe.

Remember how a little while ago I put out an S.O.S for some dummy strap hinges like this….

Well, despite a tonne of friendly offers and advice from you guys (THANK YOU!) that particular style still managed to elude me here in Australia so I ended up with two of these instead….

If you’re interested I found them here on eBay.

Because I didn’t actually need the hinge function I simply cut them off with a hacksaw to create these plain individual straps.

So, here’s the built-in before….

Ewww, right?

Well that’s actually after I already painted the knotty orange pine infills pure white.

I had initial thoughts about replacing the doors completely though because I’m all about easy budget makeovers I decided it was best to try and make the most of what I already had.

Soooo, with a minimal amount of work and cashola here’s the robe now….

It’s a subtle change though certainly more in-sync with the rest of my master bedroom.

All I did was remove the doors, bottom rail and fascia (which simply unscrewed), took them outside then spray painted all the beige enamel white. Once dry I attached my four hinge straps then reassembled everything again inside.

I was a bit concerned the new white paint might scratch or chip off the metal frame though it dried rock hard and around one month on it’s still in perfect nic.

Wanna know how the painted metal has held up one year on?
Click here to read my ‘wearability’ report.
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An Exciting New Room Redo

Phew, it’s been a crazy few weeks…in a very good way!

I guess I should start by saying ‘Merry Christmas’ and ‘Happy New Year’ (cue streamers and those roll-out party horn thingos).

Now, I should explain my recent absence. I’ll blame it on the following ten factors….

1. Beautiful weather
2. Pure laziness
3. My parent’s beach house (which forced me to stay in it for a whole week!)
4. Over-eating
5. Over-sleeping
6. The baby in my belly
7. Family and friends (the non-virtual kind :-)
8. Pure laziness (again)
9. PC problems
10. Menial boringness

Okay, so did you notice the biggy I kinda slipped in there? If you’re a bit of a skimmer (like me :-) and missed it per-chance, then for a more obvious visual clue I’m excited to announce that the next of my room makeovers will be along these lines….

Due early July (both baby and nursery reveal!).

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The Painted Hive Christmas Tree

Is it already a little too late in the season to finally share my Christmas tree?

Truth is, I’ve actually had it up since the first weekend in December (truly-ruly I have!) though with my ‘real’ job being in the events industry things can get a tad busy this time of year so sadly my blog’s been on patient pause.

I love Christmas time. Whether for reasons of nostalgia or the promise of new beginnings, to me there’s just something magical about it.

In the evenings, when dusk begins to creep around the corner, I switch on the tree lights and sit content in the semi-darkness, wrapping gifts as old-fashioned carols hum in my ears (yes, I am truly that dorky). And whilst it hasn’t yet eventuated, I’m certain my romantic notion of sipping mulled wine or brandy-laced eggnog will come to fruition one day too!

We bought our dodgy faux tree the first year we moved into our house about a week before Christmas on clearance from the local supermarket for $10, so needless to say, it’s not the grandest of specimens.

This year I used some snowy green garlands to bulk up its central sparseness then smothered it in baubles, silver stars, sparkly snowflakes and pretty lilies to create a glittering ‘White Christmas’ of sorts for our hot Aussie summer.

And yes, the few pressies currently under it are actually real!

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Cabinet Becomes Hideaway Office

Our hive has three bedrooms. The master, along with two other teeny ones currently awaiting revamps – one of which is more of a glorified cupboard (okay, so I’m exaggerating slightly though you get my drift, they are SMALL).

So anyway, the slightly less small of the two currently holds, amongst many other things, this big free standing TV cabinet (found on eBay for around $100).

Because instead of just a neat little laptop we have a hulking great computer with a massive monitor, printer, sound system, hard-drive back-up, broadband modem, etc, etc, there are a tonne of power cords and lots of poxy black plastic I’d rather hide away than have on show so here’s what’s actually living in that TV cabinet.

I know, I know, not too pretty at the moment – see what I mean about the cords? – though I do have beautification plans.

We’ve been using the computer like this for a while now, though to be honest, not very comfortably. The shelf heights are a bit awkward so you need to lean right over to reach the keyboard and mouse.

Well, I’m pleased to say that’s finally changed thanks to the installation of this rolling shelf.

Again, still awaiting beautification though currently practical if nothing else!

I’ve always found purpose-built computer cabinets can be pricey (and usually lacking in character) so here’s a quick little tute covering the basics of how you can turn any cupboard/cabinet/robe/closet into your own mini hide-away office.

Step 1
Find a cupboard. Almost anything will do. Just make sure it’s big enough to house all your bits and pieces and really deep if you also want to leave a chair hidden in it. Like I already mentioned, my cupboard was originally a TV cabinet I bought off eBay for around $100.

Step 2
Install or remove fittings as required. I was lucky to already have some shelves in place though it’s easy enough to add your own if need be.

Step 3
Install your keyboard shelf. Usually this would be hidden under the monitor shelf though based on the height of the existing shelf in my cupboard it needed to sit on top.

Because my cupboard has recessed sides, I first screwed (counter-sunk) and glued in some timber spacers.

Next I attached the exterior drawer slides.

These are just standard roller drawer brackets you can buy from the hardware store for around $10 a pair.

I then measured the depth, length and height my keyboard shelf needed to be and had a piece of MDF cut to size at the hardware store. I attached my MDF to the interior drawer slides by screwing it in from the bottom. To finish I simply inserted the shelf inside the exterior brackets.

YAY!!! We can finally comfortably reach the components!

Step 4
Make your new home office beautiful (and user-friendly :-)

Okay, I already admitted I’m still yet to complete this step though I do have some plans.


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