Sunday, December 13, 2015

Dining With Michael Bublé

I have always enjoyed making personal gifts for my family. When my children were little I sewed and knitted clothes and constructed many, many gifts.  This year I have only made one gift and it is for my mother.  She is in a nursing home and just adores Michael Bublé.  She does have a large photocopied picture of him attached to her walker which was made by one of the staff to encourage my mother to go to the dining room.  Her photo has gotten a little worn out, so I've made her something new.

I found an image online and copied it on my home printer.  I cut out the image and laid it face down on a scrap piece of 1/4" thick plywood.  (When using a jigsaw you get a smoother cut on the bottom because the blade cuts as it pulls up through the wood)  I traced around the image and made a very shallow cut all around with my utility knife (box cutter) and then with my jigsaw, leaving about 3/8" below the shape of the image (this will make sense in a minute).  I painted the back and the narrow sides with black craft paint.

I sprayed the image with a clear sealer to avoid getting bubbles in the finish and then glued it on the front of the plywood piece with Mod Podge. 

I then cut a slot, with my tablesaw, in a piece of pine.  The extra 3/8" at the bottom of the image is then glued into the slot in the pine base. The length of the base is cut to fit the width of the image.

 I stained the base and printed off something for my mom which I also attached with Mod Podge.

Michael stands at about 9" tall and the base is 5" wide x 3 1/2".  It makes me laugh having him in my workshop, it turned out better than I expected and he looks quite real!

I need to get this to the post office tomorrow and hope it gets to my mother in time for Christmas.

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Saturday, December 5, 2015

Retail Space Walls Planked (or is it Tiled?)

I have been working on the walls of my retail space, which is a former bedroom and front hallway in the new house that I'm turning into my workshop.  Although I purchased the flooring a few months ago, I felt it best to do the walls first so that I wouldn't drip paint on the new floors. As any of you DIYers know, it's better to do things in the correct order.

At first I thought I would just paint my walls in the space that will house my products, but for two reasons I decided against that.  Firstly, the walls were not in good condition due to the fact that I removed a wall, closet and door in order to make the two areas into one.  (...and anyone reading this blog for a time will know that I don't really enjoy patching and mudding drywall).  Secondly, I will need to put a lot of nails or screws (and maybe even shelving) in this room, in order to display my signs and other things I make.  I felt that hanging something off of drywall would not be as good (solid) as having some type of thicker material to "grab" the fasteners.  Initially I thought of horizontal boards spaced about a foot apart to help with that problem. Then, I started seeing quite a few bloggers who "planked" walls in their houses, and I liked the look, so decided to try that!

So, for a recap, this is the area I'm working on and this is how it looked when we bought the place:
(standing in the front hallway, the door goes into the bedroom)

This is after I removed the wall and door:

And, here is after I took out the flooring:

Okay, so what I did was get ten sheets of 1/4" plywood underlayment at the lumber store.  It comes in 4' x 8' sheets which I had the store cut to 4' x 4'.  This is much easier for me to handle and I did not want to put up any 8' lengths of boards anyway, so the maximum length of my boards will be 4'. I primed all twenty sheets, which was made easier by having a basically empty workshop, and then cut the 4' sections into strips of just over 5 7/8" wide on my tablesaw.  This gave me 8 strips per 4' length, or 16 strips from each 4' x 8' sheet. For anyone not doing the math, this is 160 strips!!

I proceeded to find the studs on all the walls (I use a strong magnet) and had all strips end and begin on studs. The studs were not at the usual 16" apart, but this is a very old home, and this front section was added on at some point, so it didn't surprise me. The ceiling is not at all level, so that was also something I had to deal with (and also wasn't surprising!)

I started on the end wall, using my nailing gun to put nails wherever I found studs.  I used pennies to horizontally space out the strips (do not ask me how many times I had to pick up pennies that fell out of the slots, I lost count after 427) and I also staggered the boards from end to end, like tiling, with a space between the end of one board and the beginning of the next. (Most people butt them up together, but I wanted the visual look of the spaces both horizontally and vertically)

Here are some progress photos (this took quite a few days of work):

Now it's time to paint the walls!

Friday, November 27, 2015

Goodbye Chestnut

We had two large trees in the front yard of the new workshop house.  The one on the left was a chestnut tree and was dying.  You can see from this photo taken in the summer when we bought the place that the tree on the left had dead branches.  The tree on the right, we've been told, is a dwarf maple, planted by the town after it had to widen the street and take out some nice trees many, many years ago.

Well, a neighbour said he could use the wood from the chestnut, so he came and cut it down.

I am working in the new place everyday and even though it was only a few months ago that I started this renovation, it's hard to believe that it once looked like this in the new workshop room:

This is how it looks today:

I'm working on my retail space right now, and it's turning out really well.  I will post about that soon...

Thursday, November 19, 2015

How to Cope Trim Tutorial

Have you ever coped trim?  Some of the trim in my new workshop needed to be cut to length due to my rearranging of some of the walls.  In the corners trim should be coped and not just cut at 45 degrees.

One side of your baseboard trim is cut straight, as I did here on the right side, going into the corner:

The left piece needs to be cut at a 45 degree angle with a mitre saw or a handsaw in a mitre box... I'm not sure how to explain this, but the trim edge that is cut leaves the bare unpainted mdf showing and is cut longer at the back:

Here is what the left piece looks like after being cut:

As you can see, the baseboard trim on the left will not fit against the right piece:

The next step is to cope the trim, which means to cut away the back edge, but not into the front.

I use a utility knife because this is mdf and not real wood.  If you have solid wood, you need to use a small coping saw and it's a bit trickier to cut, but still doable.  With the mdf you can chip away at it.

The object is to take away all the side edging (that isn't painted) so in effect you are taking away the back part of the trim and leaving the shaped front intact.

When you lay it flat you will see what still has to come off of the side and back edge:

This is what it will look like when the coping is finished and the piece is laying flat.  You will not see any of the bare edges:

As you slide it into place:

It will fit without any gaps:

I hope this helps some of you that may have thought that coping was too hard to do... you CAN do it!

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Monday, November 16, 2015

Painting Trim and a Man on a Truck

I've been painting trim, miles and miles of trim.  Some of it still at the bottom of the walls, some of it around windows and doors and some in pieces. I'm using semi-gloss in Benjamin Moore's Simply White (the 2016 "colour" of the year):

On Friday I went outside my back door to do something and saw this truck at the business being renovated nearby.  Between that auto parts business and mine is a garden.

That's my husband on top of the truck.  There is a little seat up there where he operates the crane that takes supplies off the delivery truck that he drives.  Kind of fun to see that! Here's a closeup:

Small town, eh?

Thursday, November 12, 2015

Second Coat of Paint

I have finished painting the walls in my workshop.  I hope you can see from the photos that it is not white, but very light blue-green.

My husband and a neighbour brought my table saw in from the storage unit.  I cheered as it arrived!

I do need to paint the trim still...

Monday, November 9, 2015

Painting the Workshop Walls

I picked a colour for the walls in my workshop.  It is Benjamin Moore Sea Foam and is a very, very light turquoise.

 In fact it is almost white, it's so light, but that's what I wanted, something to just stand out a little bit over my Simply White trim (that is not painted yet).

I really don't think this photo shows the colour at all, it looks white on my monitor!  This is the first coat (on the right) over a white primer that is over a grey/brown wall that was here when I bought the place.

Tomorrow I'll do the second coat and then get started on the trim.

Friday, November 6, 2015

Painted Washroom

I just got back from painting the washroom in my workshop.  It's so nice to see this room all freshened up.  I had some blue paint leftover from the master bedroom at my last house, so I thought I would use up some of that.  I also thought it might give me a clue as to what colour to paint the main workshop area.




Now I love blue, and this looks quite light in the photo, but it's a bit darker than that in person, and too blue for my workshop.  (It looks more like a baby boy bedroom colour to me.)

So... I will find something lighter for my workshop walls, I am currently thinking a very very light turquoise.

Thursday, November 5, 2015

My walls are all taped and mudded, although I still have some spots in the ceiling to fill in.  I am leaving those for now because first I have to get the metal ductwork put in position beside the chimney.  Then I can fill in the ceiling around the pieces.  (Well that is my excuse, really I am fed up with drywall)

There is a stud on the far wall in the workshop that remains and so I put dywall mud right up to it on each side.  I'm not sure if that is a good idea or not, the mud may crack being beside the wood stud.  We'll see...

I now have a coat of primer on all the workshop walls and I still have my plumbing there that needs to be removed.

 The small washroom is being painted with a primer in this photo, once that is dry I will most likely paint it with some light blue leftover paint.

I am still not sure what colour to paint the workshop?  I was thinking of white, but with the white ceiling, white doors and white trim on the windows (now that the white primer is on) it is just too much white for me.  I will decide after I see the bathroom in the light blue.  I will do a light shade, but either blue, turquoise or ??