Recreating French Vintage

Hello fellow country vintage lovers! I’m here today to share some wonderful resources and ideas for recreating a French, country, and vintage piece for your home. Read

First, find something old, ugly or boring to work with! I came across this hideous magazine rack with a leopard print-like design at Goodwill, immediately knowing it was the perfect piece.

See hideous!Magazine Holder

After much sanding, it was still very “spotted” I chose a dark stain to re-stain two areas on the rack that I had intentions for a reverse stencil (find great instructions here). I didn’t want the spotting coming through but rather a nice, clean dark wood. This worked out well, the wood took to the stain great!

R-purposed

Placing vinyl letters “READ” over the newly stained spots (I gave the stain 2-3hrs before placing vinyl letters and it needed more time but still worked for me), I then sprayed the rest with an off white spray paint.Read

Notice here – there’s nothing vintage about it, I wasn’t pleased. It looks nice and could have stayed as is. But I wanted vintage! This is when I found It’s Just Me Blog and followed her amazing guidelines for re-creating a French vintage appeal rather easily.

I created the rustic look (localized sanding and sporadic hammer marks) before creating the vintage “print” idea found on the blog. I would suggest doing this the other way around. If you make a mistake while doing the “print” it will be much easier to cover during the “create rustic” process.

Read

I also chose to create the French appeal in two locations, both being fairly small. I wouldn’t recommend this technique of “French vintage print” on anything smaller than this project here, the technique is amazing but indeed somewhat tedious with the smaller writings and lines. 

French Vintage

I chose to make the finished product a place for books rather than magazines. I love how the vintage and rustic turned out as well as the French lettering! The description on It’s Just Me Blog is fabulous and easy to follow. When you’re first reading through – it may sound lengthy but it’s quite simple once you get started.

Don’t forget the Liquid Gold once your project is complete and fully dry! Liquid Gold will ensure the preservative of your beautiful masterpiece!

Read

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Thanks for reading!

Using your Resources

re·source noun ˈrēˌsôrs

“a natural feature or phenomenon that enhances the quality of human life”

wine rack collage

As we organize this spring, it helps to set an ultimate goal. What are you working so hard to achieve? This could be: to de-clutter – truly going through papers and ‘stuff’ to file or donate, having more space – making use of wall space or cabinetry, or simply cleanliness – getting every nook and cranny. Whatever your goal may be, there are tons of resources at your fingertips! We’ve used a few here to create a multi-purpose organizer.

wine rack before

magazine rackBefore heading out to buy new storage or organizing containers watch for items in the garage, at your parents or grandparents house that may be of use. Especially wooden, because we love wood and there is an array of options to fix, clean and refurbish wood items. This old wine rack came from an ARES Thrift Store for $3.99.

I sanded it quite a bit,  using 80 grit. I’ve recently been taught the importance of sanding completely before staining anything wood. It’s important to get all the way down past the previously stained parts so that the new stain will take well. I chose a white wash stain out of pure curiosity. I have seen many people do it and needed to see for myself how it works and looks.  I simply followed the instructions on the can and viola! We now have an elegant and rustic; wine rack, towel rack, magazine holder, or anything else you fit rack!

Of course, I followed up with a Scott’s Liquid Gold Cleaner and Preservative test! liquid gold testThis lighter wood took to Liquid Gold very well so I chose not to finish it with a clear coat.

My challenge for you, is to think outside the box to achieve your spring organizing goals. Below are some additional resources you may want to use to help you get started! towel rack with Liquid Gold

resource definition

This post and project were created by our Intern, Amber Lesser. Amber is an Environmental Studies student at the University of Colorado. Thanks Amber!

Do-it-Yourself this Weekend!

book5With Spring creeping upon us, it is time to begin our annual organizing fiasco! I challenge you all not to throw away but reuse, re-purpose and recycle while you organize!earth heart

I stumbled upon this amazing idea, but realized I was lacking in old, antique looking literature. I had heard of this awesome antique store, Tables to Teacups, decided this was the perfect time to investigate. It was a great success! Grandma’s house is always a good place to begin these projects as well.

The How To: You’ll need a drill, L-brackets, ruler, and screws. booksYou will use 3 L-brackets per ‘book shelf.’ One bracket will need to be slightly smaller than the other two brackets. One set of brackets will be placed below the books, and the other (smaller) bracket will go on top of the book(s). Measure your books and start drilling (two sets of hands makes this much more manageable)! I also used a level at this point for my perfectionist side. Lastly, the smaller bracket is placed on the inside, bottom of the second (top) book – this pressed the books together enough so they didn’t move around.

Shelving

This makes a pretty solid shelf but ultimately, you won’t want to place anything heavy on these. I must say it felt wonderful when my friends made notice of the new addition to my house and they loved it.

I did this differently than the folks from which I found the idea: Thanks Kristin for a fun and easy project!

This post and project were created by our Intern, Amber Lesser. Amber is an Environmental Studies student at the University of Colorado. Thanks Amber!

A New Kind of Picture Frame

A fun, easy and inexpensive holiday gift idea. Using old picture frames and chalkboard paint you can create this cute mini-board.

So many ways to use!

The How To: You may use old picture frames or find some at your local thrift store ($1-3), how I found these. Once you’re ready, you’ll need to sand (only slightly) whatever backing is on the frame (~220 grit), one of mine is a Plexiglas like material and the other is a soft wood… the chalkboard paint to pretty versatile. After sanding, wipe it off with a damp towel (let dry) and spray 2-3 coats of chalkboard paint ($6) – this will need to dry for approximately 24 hours.

In progress

In the meantime you could put two holes in the top; I used a drill and decent sized drill bit to ensure I could get my yarn through. This is not necessary as there are many ways to hang these – design to your liking. You may also want to paint or re-stain the frame you choose. You can get quite creative with the frame and yarn or string you’re hanging it with.

This can be done under $10 a piece quite easily and it gives your gift a personal touch. Don’t forget to get some chalk as well if you’re giving as a gift.

Happy crafting!

The necessities

Places to use these: The kitchen for a grocery list, bathroom for funny quotes, on the kid’s bedroom door for reminders, or in the office for inspiration! These are excellent for co-workers!

This post and project were created by our Intern, Amber Lesser. Amber is an Environmental Studies student at the University of Colorado. Thanks Amber!