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New Job-New Tool!

How to refinish wood furniture

This month, Julia got us a commissioned job; a friend of ours was moving and wanted us to refinish wood furniture used in her daughter’s bedroom. All the pieces had been painted a few years earlier in a solid, dark gray. The client wanted them all to be a nice, clean, flat white to start off in her new home.
Refinish Wood Furniture-Bed Before-Alden Design Studio
Headboard and drawers.

Refinish Wood Furniture Before-Alden Design Studio

Enter our new Earlex HV5500 sprayer.

We had purchased it a few months ago but hadn’t had a reason to use it, yet. This sprayer is a high volume, low-pressure sprayer – perfect for painting a lot of large surfaces like headboards, footboards, dressers, and a vanity.

Refinish Wood Furniture Spraying by Alden Design Studio
On to the repairs.

The bed rails needed to be repaired where the veneer had peeled. There also were spots that needed a little wood filler and sanding done on the vanity. (One vanity door needed a new edge piece attached to replace a splintered existing one.) A cedar bottom drawer in the dresser needed a larger finger hole drilled out because the old pull tab had long ago disappeared, and a larger one was requested.

Refinish Wood Furniture-Chips-Alden Design Studio
Restoring the hardware.
All the drawer hardware had been previously painted with the same dark gray paint.

Refinish Wood Furniture-Hardware-Alden Design Studio

Julia boiled all of the hardware and then shocked it in an ice bath to break the paint bond. She then wire-brushed clean and polished it all.

Refinish Wood Furniture-Hardware 2-Alden Design Studio

Once the hardware had several coats of paint (and a few spots covered in Kilz), it was ready to be reattached to the newly painted bedroom furniture. The refinished wood furniture now looked clean and classy.  Another happy customer!

 

Refinish Wood Furniture-After-Alden Design Studio

Refinish Wood Furniture-Bed After-Alden Design Studio

Refinish Wood Furniture-Bed After2-Alden Design Studio

Until next time,

Gary

Tools we use every day on our projects can be found on our resources page here.

If you’re struggling with your own project or just need some advice on choosing the right paint for a project, Call Us. We offer phone consultation services that will answer all your questions! 

If you like this project, you’ll love our bookshelf build!

Bookshelf-After-Alden Design Studio

Also, check out our progress as we remodel our 42-year old home!

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Refinish Wood Furniture _Painting Bedroom Furniture by Alden Design Studio

 

 

DIY Wood Plate Rack

A Christmas platter (but not of cookies) expanded to a custom plate rack

Three years ago, I bought my wife a platter for Christmas.  (I know she loves platters and decorative plates.)  Little did I know that would prompt her to ask for a rack to display them all.   Since I had a lot of loose pieces of wood, and a little leftover Luan paneling, I said, “Sure.”

Wood Plate Rack-Process2-by Alden Design Studio-2

The overall dimensions are roughly 79 1/2“ tall, 28“ wide, and 4 1/2“ deep.  I started by figuring how many shelves would fit comfortably and then used my table saw to cut some dadoes in the sides to hold the shelves.  (This was before I had a router table or any dado blades for the table saw.)  On each shelf, I again used the table saw to cut a plate holder channel at the front of the piece, about an inch in and about 1/8” wide and deep.

Once I had the basic shape squared up, glued, and nailed together, I added the back with the piece of 1/4” Luan and attached some ribs on the front made out of leftover pine in the shop.  (The air compressor and pin nailer were lifesavers on this project!)  I ripped the pine board into 3/4” strips and 1/2” thick.  I figured three ribs per shelf: enough to give it some protection, but not so much that it overpowered the piece.  (She’s going to want to see those decorative plates, you know!)

Once assembled, I painted it a bright white gloss enamel.  The white makes a great contrasting pop against the colors, and the gloss makes it easy to clean, too.

Wood Plate Rack-Process1-by Alden Design Studio-2

I marked out the studs and hung it in the kitchen near the doorway.  Then I added a piece of trim to it; I just thought it made a smoother transition to the wall.  Lastly, I added another piece of trim to the top to give it a more finished look.

White Four Door Cabinet-After-by Alden Design Studio

Until next time,

Gary

Tools we use every day on our projects can be found on our resources page here.

If you’re struggling with your own project or just need some advice on choosing the right paint for a project, Call Us. We offer phone consultation services that will answer all your questions! 

If you like this project, you’ll love our bookshelf build!

Bookshelf-After-Alden Design Studio

Also, check out our progress as we remodel our 42-year old home!

Be sure to subscribe to our newsletter to keep informed on our new blog posts.

Find us on Facebook @AldenDesignStudio

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DIY PLATE RACK_WOOD PLATE RACK_WALL PLATE RACK by Alden Design Studio

 

 

Whoa!-Pause Right There! (DIY Four Door Cabinet)

Building a Custom Four Door Cabinet

Weekend Home Improvement Shows and a cup (or 2) of coffee will help get the creative mind thinking.  Of course, we had other things to do (e.g., more furniture in the garage to be worked on, grass cutting, weeding flower beds, etc.), but right now, we were glued to HGTV (love that channel).  An episode of House Crashers came on and a flash of a four door cabinet they were building came into view.

 

Four Door Cabinet

“Whoa!! Stop!! Back up” is what came out of my mouth!!  “Wow, that is a very cool cabinet.” I then turned to Gary and immediately asked, “Do you think you could build one like that?”  After about 30 seconds of reviewing the picture he said, “Sure, I can make that”!  Woo Hoo!!

White Four Door Cabinet-process-by Alden Design Studio-2

So that afternoon the process began.  It was a lot of paint and we did not have our wonderful paint sprayer (Earlex)at the time, so this was all by hand.  It turned out Amazing!  The four door cabinet is not too deep, but just deep enough.  The storage at the bottom holds the “breakable” Christmas ornaments that I don’t have to box up!  It fits perfectly in our living room, and the piano hinged doors on this cabinet are so cool!  I love the frame edges around the doors.

White Four Door Cabinet-After2-by Alden Design Studio-2

Sometimes it just amazes me what my husband can do!

Until next time,

Julia

Tools and products we use every day can be found on our resources page here.

If you’re struggling with your own project or just need some advice on choosing the right paint for a project, Call Us. We offer phone consultation services that will answer all your questions! 

If you like this project, you’ll love our recent bookshelf build!

Bookshelf Makeover by Alden Design Studio

Also, check out our progress as we remodel our 42-year old home!

Be sure to subscribe to our newsletter to keep informed on our new blog posts.

Find us on Facebook @AldenDesignStudio

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CUSTOM FOUR DOOR CABINET_Wall Cabinet_ by Alden Design Studio

 

 

Grandma’s End Table

The Barn Strikes Again…A Wood End Table!

Painted End Table before-Alden Design Studio

The family open-floor barn held many treasures.  Including one end table that I remember as a kid.  This particular end table was at my Grandmother’s house in the room we were not “allowed” in….the Formal Living Room.  Yep – this end table was one of those very pieces of furniture I vaguely remember yet I just had to rescue it!

The hubby inspected and emptied any critter remnants getting it ready for the next stage of its life.  The clean up was rather easy and I have to say there was pure joy in seeing this piece come back to life.

Painted End Table process-Alden Design Studio

We normally see lots of pieces with “issues” in design, durability or wear and tear.  This end table was a well-made piece.  The builder did a fantastic job.  It just needed some “nourishing” and given the next chance.

I am so proud of how it turned out!  It is a bit different from what it was originally because I wanted to give it a more updated look.  It turned out beautiful! I plan on placing this piece in an “allowed” room where everyone can see it.

Painted End Table after-Alden Design Studio

Hope you enjoyed this project.

Until next time,

Julia

Tools we use every day on our projects can be found on our resources page here. 

If you’re struggling with your own project or just need some advice on choosing the right paint for a project, Call Us. We offer phone consultation services that will answer all your questions! 

Check our other recent barn find!

Oak Dresser After by Alden Design Studio

Also, check out our progress as we remodel our 42-year old home!

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Find us on Facebook @AldenDesignStudio

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End Table Makeover before:after Alden Design Studio

 

 

Our Barn Treasure-An Oak Dresser!

An old painted oak dresser called out to me…

Oak Dresser by Alden Design Studio

Looking at this painted oak dresser from a distance for the very first time was incredible!  This amazing piece we rescued from an open-floor barn where it had been “stored” for at least 35 years.  No electricity in this barn, just lots of “stuff” that I was able to pick through and take home!  My family had stored lots of furniture items in this barn, I made sure this wood desk came home with me.  And, yes, of course, I checked for lead paint..whew – no lead.  Great!

Drawer restoration needed!

Once we got it home and looked it over closely, we noticed it was missing a drawer on the lower right side. In fact, all the drawers will need new drawer bottoms and a bit of cleaning to remove the nests of different critters who had once (or more) called this dresser home.

The drawer sides were not a “Dovetail” cut, nope! They were a “scalloped and dowel” method of joining the drawer sides. This type of joinery was a first for me!  Wow – This piece absolutely needed us!

The hubby made the updates to the drawers and installed a shelf where the missing door was and then added a bottom. A couple of drawer pulls were missing, and the rest were very brittle. The holes in these drawers were not the standard width of today. They were an odd size so we had to special order the pulls.

Once the paint was removed, the magic started to happen.  The beauty began coming through. We then stained this magnificent piece of furniture and added the special-order handles as a finishing touch. This wood desk is in our guest room and just makes me smile every time I see it.  The wood needed to be shown off…and I think it now does!

Oak Dresser After by Alden Design Studio

Hope you enjoyed this project.

Until next time,

Julia

Tools we use every day for our projects can be found on our resources page here. 

If you’re struggling with your own project or just need some advice on choosing the right paint for a project, Call Us. We offer phone consultation services that will answer all your questions! 

Also, check out our progress as we remodel our 42-year old home!

Be sure to subscribe to our newsletter to keep informed on our new blog posts.

Find us on Facebook @AldenDesignStudio

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Oak Dresser by Alden Design Studio

 

 

Restoring A Wood Desk

Wood Desk-Before-Alden Design Studios

All Mine! Cherry Wood Desk Makeover

Sometimes, it’s what you take off; sometimes it’s what you put on that counts. As I write this, I’m sitting at my wood desk in our family room. There’re various books, a light, a router, and my PC.

 What was originally on this wood desk was a TON of old varnish, years of abuse and just dirt. We bought it for a whopping $10.00 at the local thrift store. It was behind some other pieces and covered up with boxes. 

Again, it’s what’s on it that counts.

The stuff on it had caused other people to overlook it. But, I saw something more – I saw what looked like a diamond in the dirt. My wife saw me checking it out and asked me if I thought it would be a good piece for us to refinish and sell. 

“Nope,” I said. “This one’s mine.”

Wood Desk Makeover-Sanding-Alden Design Studios_

 After about 6 hours of sanding with 80 grit paper, the old finish was coming off and leaving a nice veneer finish. (I was careful not to be too aggressive in sanding, or it would have “bit” too deeply and ruined the veneer.) 

Wood Desk Makeover-Drawers-Alden Design Studios_

It actually looked like cherry, and the whole wood desk was more solid than it first appeared. I finished sanding with 120 grit paper and decided to go with a cherry stain. 

Wood Desk Makeover-Top-Alden Design Studios_

Wood Desk Makeover-Stained Top-Alden Design Studios_

I kept being surprised by how well it took stain, and how well the varnish gave it a nice, deep shine.

Wood Desk Makeover-After-Alden Design Studios_

 Once completed, this cherry wood desk came inside to its own place in our family room. I’ve slowly added things back onto it.  A blotter, a pencil jar, and a few small other things. The difference is now, the things are staying on it, and this wood desk is staying here. 

Until next time…

Gary

Tools we use every day on our projects can be found on our resources page here.

If you like this restoration project, be sure to follow us on Facebook and Instagram where we show more of our finished pieces, like this beautiful telephone table!

Telephone Table-After-Alden Design Studios

Also, check out our progress as we remodel our 42-year old home!

Be sure to subscribe to our newsletter to keep informed on our new blog posts.

And remember if you’re struggling with a project or just need some advice on choosing the right paint for your project, Call Us. We offer phone consultation services that will answer your questions!

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Cherry Wood Desk Makeover-Alden Design Studios

Build a BookShelf Out of Old Shelving

It was August 13, 2016….and it was purple….very purple.

Bookshelf-Before-Alden Design Studio

I visited one of my favorite places about 35 minutes away and this lovely purple shelving unit was there just for me. It had to be because everyone would just walk on by without a second look. I saw it too and walked by, and then backed up to get another look. The price was so very reasonable….and it was screaming to me that it needed me!!  Paid, loaded, and we are on our way home! Hubby helps to unload it and you can imagine his look of surprise. “Well, what do we have here?”, he asks. I explained to him my vision of creating a bookshelf and the beauty it would be. It was all on me.

Bookshelf-first coat of paint-Alden Design Studios

So, after a good wiping down and the first coat of Kilz ™, it was now more baby blue than purple. Two more coats of Kilz ™ and we were ready to paint the final color, but first….a few things were needed.

In comes the hubby’s part.

The once very purple shelving unit needed a middle shelf and a backing to create the bookshelf I had envisioned. We had some beadboard leftover that would work great, but not with the “lines.”  So what do you do to make it work?  Easy, just turn it over and use the backside of the beadboard. Shelving installed, back installed and 2 coats of Vintage White applied. We now had a bookshelf.

Bookshelf-After1-Alden Design Studio

Wow!!!

Love our pneumatic Bostitch nailer! It made quick work of installing extra shelves and backing. Vintage White Paint mixed with Chalky Powder made for great additional coverage and a look that made you stop in your tracks. Don’t you agree?

Bookshelf-After-Alden Design Studio

I decorated for Fall that year; contemplating whether the possession of this great bookshelf should stay with me. It did not; it went to a great home and we had another satisfied Alden Design Studio client.

Until next time…

Julia

Tools we use every day on our projects can be found on our resources page here. 

If you like this repurposing project, be sure to follow us on Facebook where we show more of our finished pieces. Also, check out our progress as we remodel our 42-year old home!

Be sure to subscribe to our newsletter to keep informed on our new blog posts.

And remember if you’re struggling with a project or just need some advice on choosing the right paint for your project, Call Us. We offer phone consultation services that will answer your questions!

Pinterest Pin for Painting a Bookshel

Cabinet to Coffee Bar In No Time At All!

Coffee Bar Anyone??

I see open shelving, I see an off-white color, I see a new life for this old cabinet.        

I see a beautiful coffee bar!

It is amazing what will fit in the “boot” of my SUV. Yes, many years ago I was introduced to the word “boot” instead of trunk (or in this case, liftgate), as the “boot.” So, into the boot of my SUV went this wonderful little treasure that I came upon in October 2016! I was so lucky to find this one, and I knew it! 

Cabinet Before by Alden Design Studio

This old cabinet needed a good cleaning, but all-in-all was not in bad shape. The drawers needed a little “shelving rails” that my local home improvement store was very happy to provide, and I had to learn how to install them (explanation – had the hubby install because this was just not “clicking” in my head). 

Rails complete – oh yeah! 

Taking things apart is one of my favorite things to do; however, re-assembly, not-so-much. I was very excited that these doors would not be returning to this piece!! After removal, we decided to block cut the bottom apron. So glad the hubby loves me and loves to cut with that circular saw. I must admit, I am a bit apprehensive of that saw. I give him plenty of room when he starts with that saw. While waiting for the cut, my wheels were “a-spinning” for the color combination. I found myself wanting a deep dark stain color on the top and an off-white base. So, I went over the piece with my palm sander (that I absolutely love) from my local home improvement store and had my mahogany gel stain ready. 

Finished Coffee Bar by Alden Design Studio

A quick order from Amazon for the cup pulls and a quick trip to the Hobby Lobby on a mission for “dark” colored baskets and Viola-I had a coffee bar! Sometimes I find myself buying baskets just in case I need for a project. In this case, I “had” to find these for this piece. 

I just love the final product!

Coffee/Tea anyone?

Until next time…

Julia

Tools we use every day can be found on our resources page here.

If you like this repurposing project, be sure to check out our bookshelf from shelving unit post here.

Bookshelf Makeover by Alden Design Studio

Also, check out our progress as we remodel our 42-year old home! Feel free to follow us on Facebook where we show more of our finished pieces.

Be sure to subscribe to our newsletter to keep informed on our new blog posts.

And remember if you’re struggling with a project or just need some advice on choosing the right paint for your project, Call Us. We offer phone consultation services that will answer your questions!

PIn This Graphic-Alden Design Studio

Wine Bar Cabinet-DIY Budget Design

Wine Bar – Why Yes Please!

My husband would say, “My wife gets me in more stuff,” and he would be correct. So in the Fall of 2016, when a co-worker messages me to check out an old hutch that she is getting rid of, we are “there”! No matter that it is a good 35 minutes away, no matter that it is an old hutch. Nope – not even a consideration (in my mind). So, off we go in the truck (love that truck) to see that “hutch.” We arrive and the hutch is not in plain view, as you would think a hutch would be. We found it in the most interesting place- in a bedroom closet. Love that part!! 

We agree to a very reasonable sale, and then must finagle to get the hutch out of the closet without:

1) breaking the hutch

2) marring up the woodwork/trim in the closet and

3) hurting me or the hubby!

Success!! The hutch is out and coming home with us!

Wine Bar-Before-Alden Design Studios

It is totally curvy like an older hutch would be, and we have an idea for its final look. It will be a Wine Bar!! Yep – Can you see it? 

Wine Bar-Shelf Build-Alden Design Studio

First things first, off with the “cupboard” top by taking that wonderful saw to it and, of course, saving the cupboard part because you just never know when you will need it! We removed the curvy apron on this piece and decided to try a new look for the doors. 

Wine Bar-Door Grate-Alden Design Studio

Inside our local home improvement store is an item called a “furnace” screen. Basically, it is a sheet of metal with a decorative pattern. Honestly, we had never ever noticed this before and just happened to be standing right beside the end cap one day and looked up. 

Yep, the inserts to the bottom doors will be set with the furnace screen, and the hubby did a great job cutting this out and inserting the grate. 

Wine Bar-Door After1-Alden Design Studio

Next, a quick wood fill in the drawer holes and a relocation of silver cup pulls with a smooth look of gray paint to work with the silver in the furnace screen and pulls and wow! 

Wine Bar-Bottle Rack-Alden Design Studio

Lastly, we added a wine bottle holder inside. Now it’s ready for a new place that is not in a closet! We must show off the new look you know! 

Until next time…

Julia

Tools we use every day can be found on our resources page here. 

If you like this repurposing project, be sure to check out our coffee bar created from an old cabinet!

Finished Coffee Bar by Alden Design Studio

Feel free to follow us on Facebook where we show more of our finished pieces. Also, check out our progress as we remodel our 42-year old home!

Be sure to subscribe to our newsletter to keep informed on our new blog posts.

And remember if you’re struggling with a project or just need some advice on choosing the right paint for your project, Call Us. We offer phone consultation services that will answer your questions!

PIn This Graphic-Alden Design Studio

Wine Bar pin by Alden Design Studio

Framed Mirror-Simple to Impressive in Under $40!!

Mirror, Mirror on the Wall….Less than $35.00 in it and love it!

I had a vision, and I had the paint. I only needed the understanding and the construction from the hubby on this piece. We see these mirrors in our local stores for less than $10.00. They are great on the back of a closet door or somewhere out of the way to do that “check” of the fit of your clothes before you walk out into the world. This one, however, was going to be a little different. A framed mirror. 

Framed Mirror Design by Alden Design Studio

We decided to do a larger wood frame and wood backing on this mirror to make it a stand-up mirror. You’ve seen the shows on TV where they have a standing wood frame mirror there to make the room look larger right?  Well, that’s what we (meaning me) were going to do.

Framed Mirror Design-Frame Measure-Alden Design Studio

Framed Mirror Ready to Paint by Alden Design Studio

Joining corners with a 45-degree angle is NOT my “bag” or understanding or willingness…just throwing that out there. I just stood by ready to inspect and paint while the hubby did his work to make it ready for me to paint.  There is so much simplicity to this piece and yet, angles trip some of us up (yeah, me). 

Framed Mirror Finished by Alden Design Studio

I finished my part by painting it in a Moosehide Brown Chalky Paint, and it was ready to go to a new home…or so I thought. At most, we had $25 in materials and about $10 for the mirror. However the more I looked at this framed mirror, the more I just loved it. We do so many other projects, and yet, I was totally smitten by this piece. And then this also happened…I go into our local hobby store, and I see a framed mirror (same height and just a tad wider) in a not-real-wood frame for $169.99. 

Wait, what? A wood framed mirror with a price tag like this attached? I was shocked. 

It was at that moment, I decided this mirror would stay with us; I’m good with that. 

Have you ever completed a simple project that just “wowed” you?  This one sure did me.

Until next time…

Julia

If you liked this home decor makeover, you might also like our bookshelf creation.

Bookshelf Makeover by Alden Design Studio

Tools we use every day can be found on our resources page here. 

Feel free to follow us on Facebook where we show more of our finished pieces. Also, check out our progress as we remodel our 42-year old home!

Be sure to subscribe to our newsletter to keep informed on our new blog posts.

And remember if you’re struggling with a project or just need some advice on choosing the right paint for your project, Call Us. We offer phone consultation services that will answer your questions!

PIn This Graphic-Alden Design Studio

How to Frame a Mirror by Alden Design Studio