Friday, December 28, 2012

A Map of the World

Finally I have finished the project I previewed some time ago. I know you all thought I had disappeared. Here I bring you my Map of the World Chest!

This is a piece I bought at Goodwill for $20. It was in rough shape when I bought it but I just fell in love with its size. It was nice and petit. Definitely an older piece. (It also smelled like an older piece!) I had to drag it outside for many days to let it air out in the sun. Finally once it lost the musky smell I started working on it. First thing I did was fill in the missing veneer pieces with wood putty. One drawer had 4 pulls while the others only had two so I went ahead and filled those in with wood putty while I was at it. Then I got out the sander and went to work.

It was around this time that I decided that I wanted to turn this piece into a Christmas present for a special someone. I needed it to be manly, something a guy would be proud to display. I brainstormed ideas for quite a while and finally decided to decoupage a world map on the drawer fronts. I had no Mod Podge experience so I had to take yet another break and practice on some coasters.

Lining up the maps and trimming around the drawers was a tedious project. Actually the process of applying the Mod Podge was tedious.

I added a non-slip product to the paint to give it texture. It is made by Rustoleum, it is a very fine, sand like substance, giving the paint a subtle texture. I will admit, adding this product made the piece harder to glaze. The glaze didn't want to come out off all the little microscopic grooves. It is worth it though for the texture. Before I glazed the paint sort of looked like chocolate milk but the glaze gave it that little extra something.

Without further ado here is the final product. I'm very pleased with how it turned out. Oh, and the recipient loved his Christmas present!

I'm partying here:
Frugal Friday at The Shabby Nest
Show and Tell Friday at My Romantic Home
Feathered Nest Friday at French Country Cottage
Simply Creations Link Party at Simple Home Life
Fridays at Redoux
Furniture Feature Friday at Miss Mustard Seed
Power of Paint Party at Domestically Speaking
Winter Blues Wednesday Party at DIY By Design
Nifty Thrifty Tuesday at Coastal Charm
If It's Not Baroque Tuesday Link Party
Transformation Thursday at Shabby Creek Cottage

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Christmas Decorations

I have a very exciting project that I'll be sharing with you in the next few weeks. But for now I wanted to show you my Christmas decorations. I'm afraid to put up a tree with the cats, I have nightmares of coming home to a tree crashed in the middle of the living room. Instead I decorate with Christmas ornaments. Lots and lots of bowls filled with Christmas ornaments.

Friday, December 7, 2012

A Sneak Peek

I have not been good about posting here lately and I do apologize. It's just that time of year where other obligations take up much of your free time! I have been working on a project for -- I'm embarrassed to admit it's taken me this long -- almost two months now. Yikes! I plan to have this finished soon as it is a Christmas gift.  Here is a sneak peek for you.

Stay tuned for the finished product :-)

Friday, November 16, 2012

Cream Cheese Pound Cake

Today's recipe was given to me by my Aunt. I honestly can't tell you where she got the recipe. It could be from the back of the Philadelphia cream cheese box for all I know.  What I do know is that it's been showing up at family functions for as long as I can remember. Oh, and did I forget to mention that it's DELICIOUS!

My step-father requested that I make him this cake for his recent birthday. It was a big hit! He said it might be the best cake I've made so far--and I've made LOTS of cakes. I'm suspecting it's the copious amounts of butter and sugar that make this cake so yummy! This is definitely not a low fat cake but as I like to say, all things in moderation. Without further ado, here is the cream cheese pound cake recipe.


  • 1 c. margarine
  • 1/2 c. unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 8oz. package cream cheese, softened
  • 3 c. sugar
  • 6 large eggs
  • 3 c. plain flour minus 1 tbsp
  • 2 tsp. vanilla
  1. Combine the first three ingredients (margarine, butter, cream cheese) and beat well.
  2. Gradually add sugar and beat until light and fluffy (approximately 5 minutes).
  3. Add eggs one at a time, beating after each addition.
  4. Gradually add flour and beat well.
  5. Stir in vanilla.
  6. Pour into well greased 10 inch tube pan.
  7. Bake at 325 for 1 hour 30 min (or until cake tests done).
  8. Cool in pan for 10 minutes then remove and cool completely.

I'm not sure what gave the outside of the cake all those pits (anyone know?) but it certainly didn't affect the taste!!

Friday, October 26, 2012

Mod Podged Tile Coasters

This project is all over the web right now, but I decided to join in since needed some practice using Mod Podge. I have a big project coming up that I need to use Mod Podge on and the one time I tried it before was a disaster--bubbles, wrinkles, you name it. This time I made sure to do my research before I started!

This first thing you'll need to do is gather your supplies.

You'll need four 4-inch tiles; a map (or whatever you're going to Mod Podge on to your tile); Mod Podge; a paintbrush; an xacto knife; and some sort of instrument to help you get the bubbles out. I used a pastry roller -- which worked very nicely -- but I'm sure a rolling pin or your fingers would work as well. You'll also need a pencil, scissors, and some ribbon, which I neglected to gather for the picture.

Place your tile on the selected area of your map and trace around the edges of your tile with a pencil. Next cut out the area with scissors.

After you've cut out the map section brush a thin layer of Mod Podge on the front of your tile.

Next brush a thin layer of Mod Podge on the BACK of your cut out. This is critical and this is where I messed up last time. Don't forget this step!!

Gently place the map (backside down of course) on the top of your tile.

First press the map lightly with your fingertips and then roll over with the pastry roller to get out any air bubbles that might have developed. You'll probably notice some excess glue has squeezed out on the sides so just take a paper towel and gently wipe it off.

Now leave your tile to dry. I left mine overnight but an hour or two would probably suffice. Make sure your tile is dry and then take an xacto knife and trim the edges of the map to make them even with the tile.

Brush a thin layer of Mod Podge on the top of your map. Once it has dried, reapply. I did three coats for mine. Here is a finished tile that I did last week.

Now you'll want to put something on the bottom of your coasters to keep them from scratching your tables. I  cut squares out of a roll of cork sheeting that I had handy. The little felt dots you put on the bottom of chairs would work as well.

TADA -- you are finished! You can also spray them with a can of acrylic sealer if desired for some extra protection. Stack all four and tie with a pretty ribbon. Now you have an inexpensive, personalized, handmade gift for giving!

Friday, October 5, 2012

Turn the WHITEr shade of pale

If you remember my antique dresser reveal from back in August, you'll remember that I painted it in Annie Sloan Chalk Paint (ASCP) Old White, applied the clear wax and then the dark brown wax, and then stained the top a deep brown color. The only thing I did different here is that I used ASCP Pure White and I thinned the dark wax using mineral spirits--so as not to make it quite so dark.

I've had the chest itself for many years. It dates back to my very first apartment and has made three moves with me since then. My grandmother picked it up for me at a yard sale for $20. It sits in a corner in my master bedroom so I decided to lighten it up a bit.

Unfortunately, the before picture I have isn't very good. Scratch that -- it's terrible! Alas, I had already started work and completely forgot to take a picture. can see what shade the wood was at least.

Once again I had to use two coats of the ASCP. I applied the clear wax and then thinned the dark wax with mineral spirits. It was still a little darker than I wanted so I applied some more of the clear wax. I sanded the top and stained it a dark, rich brown--Kona by Rustoleum. The hardware is original to the piece. I didn't do anything other than take it off and put it back on.

And here she is all finished! I especially love the detailing on the top two drawers. And those sweet little pulls!

I'm partying here:
Furniture Feature Friday at Miss Mustard Seed
Frugal Friday at The Shabby Nest
Show and Tell Friday at My Romantic Home
Feathered Nest Friday at French Country Cottage
Thrifty Things Friday at The Thrifty Groove
Inspiration Friday at At the Picket Fence
Transformation Thursday at Shabby Creek Cottage

Friday, September 14, 2012

From a China Cabinet to a Bookcase

When I first bought my house my Grandmother gave me a dining room table and a matching china cabinet. I didn't have room for the china cabinet so it went into storage in the basement. I tried to sell the china cabinet multiple times but couldn't find a buyer so I decided to put it to good use. As a bookcase. You see, the top of the china cabinet wasn't actually attached to the bottom so that you could use the piece as either a china cabinet or a buffet. The top part merely sat on the bottom. Pretty ingenious huh?

Here is the top part of the china cabinet before. Notice that it doesn't have a bottom as the top of the buffet would have been the bottom. It also had three doors but I neglected to take a picture before I took off the other two. (I also neglected to take a picture of the complete china cabinet.)

The top was also unfinished as it would have been too high to see once it was on the buffet bottom. It does have a light which I decided to leave in place.

To start I needed a bottom so two 1 x 8's were cut to size and attached. Of course this left a large crack where the two were joined. Since I had a piece of beadboard lying around from an earlier project we cut it to size, flipped it upside down, and glued it to the top of the new boards so as to have a smooth bottom for the bookcase.To finish the top we put boards across first to support the weight should I decide I wanted to set something on top of the bookcase. Then we cut another piece of the beadboard to size, flipped it upside down and attached it so as to have a smooth top. We also made a small indention for the light cord in the back board. Here are the bracings.

Next I filled in the holes where the door hinges had been with wood putty, gave the piece a light sanding and went to work painting. The inside I painted Woodsy Scent by Clark and Kensington. You might recall that this is the same color I painted my nightstand.

I painted the piece itself and the shelving a light grey called Baby Elephant, also a Clark and Kensington color (thanks to Ace Hardware for all the free samples they gave away recently! :-) ) The feet were purchased for $1 each at a local antique fair. I opted not to glaze the new bookcase. And here she is completed!!

And of course my cat Penny just had to get in on the excitement. She couldn't stand it that I was taking pictures and she wasn't in them!

I'm partying here:
Furniture Feature Friday at Miss Mustard Seed
Frugal Friday at The Shabby Nest
Show and Tell Friday at My Romantic Home
Feathered Nest Friday at French Country Cottage
Thrifty Things Friday at The Thrifty Groove
Inspiration Friday at At the Picket Fence
Transformation Thursday at Shabby Creek Cottage
October Before and After Party at Thrifty Decor Chick