Real Wood + Greenery for the Best Holiday Look of the Season

rustic-holiday-decor-collageHave you started decorating for the winter holidays yet? As soon as Thanksgiving was over, we began decorating the Scott’s Liquid Gold office for Christmas. This year, popular holiday décor is overwhelmingly natural, rustic, neutral, and understated. Images and design ideas trending right now highlight natural and botanical elements rather than plastic or manufactured-looking elements. This trend is great for the budget and easy to achieve because many items you can use may even be found in your very own backyard! We are excited to share with you how to create this look in your home and how Scott’s Liquid Gold can help.

To begin, find some real wood. Flea markets and thrift stores are great for finding old wooden trays, planter boxes, barn wood, pallet wood or crates. With a little Liquid Gold, they make beautiful clean slates for your creative attention! Barn wood and pallet wood can make great holiday signs or stocking holders. Crates, trays, and planter boxes can be the start to a lovely tablescape or the festive filling of an empty corner or coffee table.

Once you have your wood, go on a treasure hunt in your backyard for branch cuttings, pine cones, and rosemary, spruce, or evergreen sprigs. If your backyard doesn’t yield enough to work with, try Walmart, craft stores, or garden stores. You can easily find fake or real greenery, wood slices, burlap, and pillar candles.  These elements can easily be put together in many different ways to create charming holiday looks – it’s so easy they can almost be thrown together! christmas-botanical-decorationsslg-plus-decor-2_1
Beyond the decorations, holiday gift wrap can follow the same trend. Pinterest is full of inspiration for beautiful simple gift of brown kraft paper with natural elements such as greenery and twine. Again – great for the budget and less work for you!

Creativity, thriftiness, and a little Scott’s Liquid Gold blend perfectly together for a charming and beautiful holiday look. Happy decorating!

For more information on Scott’s Liquid Gold visit www.scottsliquidgold.com.

Breadbox Gets an Updo

Breadbox Before   Breadbox_afterThrift Store: Goodwill  in Lafayette , CO.  Did you know Goodwill Industries “diverts more than two billion pounds of clothing and household goods every year from landfills by recovering the value in people’s unwanted material goods.” That’s pretty impressive. 

Breadbox appearance: decent condition, didn’t need much work.

Reality of the box condition: highly built up gunk, hardware was very worn, wood itself dry and dull, missing the center piece. 

First I had to use Scott’s Liquid Gold Cleaner & Preservative to restore the wood. This wood was highly receptive to Liquid Gold, it was a hard wood that has been around for a very long time. This also removed all the gunk the breadbox had acquired. Inside the bread box

Gunk noun: unpleasant sticky or messy substance that can be removed using Liquid Gold.
Breadbox_B4_After

The Updo

Light sanding on the front in preparation for paint. A new and fun knob found at Hobby Lobby. Spray painted the hinges copper to add a shimmer. Very fancy scrapbook paper & cardboard were used to fill in the center open space for the final touch.

Breadbox is prepared for it’s date with Bread!

Breadbox Finished   Bread Loaf

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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!

Do-It-Yourself Nesting Box

Summer is near, time to enjoy and embrace the natural world! Having a bird house or nesting box is a significant way to create a mutual relationship with nature. bird houseAs we are aware, humans have been increasingly building concrete jungle environments which in turn, is pushing out other species habitats.  By building an alternative and (nearly) natural environment for birds to nest, we are at least making an attempt to co-habitat.

pallet

pallet & pieces

Construction

Construction

Using an old pallet, a little man power, and a few power tools we built this amazing bird house! Once again, pallets are a booger to work with. We were able to get this one apart with a pry-bar and hammer, always use gloves when working with pallets! There is generally an excess of nails, most of which are rusty. After pulling off the best pieces, they were sanded (80 grit) to make the wood slightly safer to work with.

The pieces were cut according to the bird house plan used then glued and nailed appropriately.

I chose not to paint the roof, allowing Scott’s Liquid Gold Cleaner & Preservative to work its magic.

Before & After

Before & After

Nesting boxes have many positive purposes:

1. Attract natural pollinators to your garden.

2. Think wake up call – sweet chirping or obnoxious alarm clock?

3. Create a mutual relationship & co-habitat with the birds of your community. 

4. And well, birds are just fun to watch! Why do you want a bird house in your yard?

bird house

Nesting boxes generally attract birds like wrens, blue birds, chickadees, titmice, wood ducks and wood peckers. Check out choosing the right bird house for your backyard! Thanks Anthony for great instructions!

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!

Bring On Winter

Hang anything you would like from an old door!

I wanted to hang my families ski’s and snowboard’s! I can fit up to three on this one, probably could have fit another two tiers on it if you get the right hooks and hang them at more of an angle. I went to Resource Yard, found a used door for $15 (they had them for $10-85).

The starting point

After a little sanding to even the texture out, I picked a fun color to paint the door (used some old paint in the basement). As I was painting it this amazing blue, I decided I wanted snowflakes on it – seemed to fit the theme. I even created the snowflakes myself, like we did in elementary school (folding the paper 4-5 times and cut away). Then, added a touch of splatter, just because it’s fun to do.

Really anything would be fun on here, If I could paint the San Juan Mountain Range on it, I would have. But my artistic abilities do not extend that far. This would spruce up any garage or basement! Also, helps to keep snow gear from continuously falling over when it is sat up against a wall. It is far cheaper than any rack you may find at a sports store and it has a personal touch! And last but certainly not least, I shined it up with some Scott’s liquid Gold for a beautiful shine! Happy Skiing and hopes for more snow this season in Colorado!

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

From Nothing to Something!

A Do-It-Yourself log cabin style coat rack – made from a pallet!

Pallet

The Beginning!

Reusing old items is not always appealing, but re-purposing them can be very enjoyable and rewarding! I gathered some random materials around the office and home; a pallet, planters, random metals objects (hooks), and a few tools to create my very own cozy coat rack.

There is no doubt about it, pallets are not the easiest to work with but after some demolition work, I began sanding away. To create an even greater rustic look I used an old bike chain and hammer to dent the wood more. Then, I used a damp cloth to clean off the excess dirt and wiped it down with Scott’s Liquid Gold Wood Wash.

Rack in Progress

Making it Happen

Soon, I had a great product to begin staining. While letting the stain set in, I painted the little random objects to use as hooks and baskets. I gathered some nuts and bolts to tighten the pallet and attached the other materials (wood glue and clamps would have worked as well).

Once the rack was dry, it was quite dull so I used Scott’s Liquid Gold Wood Cleaner and Preservative to moisturize and shine my new coat rack and old pallet.

Job 1

The Finished Beauty!

If you want to start a project like this, make sure to look around your house you may be quite surprised at what you find! This fun project is a great way to spruce up your house while keeping those extra ‘things’ out of landfills.

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