Entertainment Center Make Over

Today, I wanted to show you some pictures of an Entertainment Center that I bought from a friend for $75.00

This unit is very solid and had great bones.

The style of it was what needed some help.

It looked like a flash from the past, and I wanted it to become the focal point of my formal living room.

Enjoy the pictures.

(If you have any questions or comments please feel free to leave them in the comment box below.)

tv cabitnet before









As you can see in the BEFORE picture. This cabinet had GREAT bones. It just needed an update.













The first thing I did was sand the entire cabinet to make sure that the MINWAX GEL STAIN would stick to the surface.

Then I purchased these gorgeous accent pieces from RESTORATION HARDWARE to give the cabinet some interest and style.

I painted them to look like old silver cut outs then I nailed them to the front of the two bottom drawers and on the front of the TV stand I built for this project.

I replaced the round knobs on each drawer with some old cupboard handles that I took out of an old trailer house kitchen.  I repainted the handles to make them look like silver jewelry.












The next thing I did was paint the shelves a light turquoise blue color to match the other pieces of furniture in my living room.

I used the gel stain to mimic the look of Hickory wood.

Now with the added inlay’s this piece looks like a custom cabinet that cost hundreds of dollars.

The finished project cost me $115.00. 

So, I now have a custom piece of furniture in my home that looks expensive, but actually was very affordable.


Here are the side by side pictures of the BEFORE and AFTER





Today, I wanted to show you some pictures of a broken dresser that I had.

I was ready to throw it out, but I figured that since I needed this dresser in my bedroom, I would see if I could save us money by RESCUING it instead of throwing it out.

I wanted it to look good with the Arches National Park theme in my master bedroom, so I sketched out a design that would match my room.

Please let me know what you think of the transformation in the comments below.











SO…Here is what the dresser looked like when I started.

As you can see it has one drawer that has completely broken out of it and cannot be repaired.

(Which is the reason why I was going to throw it away.)

But wait till you see how I saved this dresser.












The first thing I did was sand the entire surface so that the new paint would stick.

Then I painted the body of the dresser with a turquoise blue color.









The next thing I did was take some old brown paper ( the kind from grocery bags) and used MOD PODGE to glue it to the top of the dresser to give the top the look of old leather.

Then I added a second layer of MOD PODGE to the top of the paper and while it was still wet, I painted the top with  a mahogany colored wood stain.











Now that I had the top and body all repainted, it was time to choose a design.

I cut out a diamond from a piece of cardboard to use as a template then found the exact center of each drawer and traced the diamond on each drawer.

I then got out my level and made the straight lines, and then used the diamond template again on the edged of each drawer.














Now that I have the pattern on the drawer, I just need to decide what colors to paint each section.















Now that I have it all base coated, I thought that it might look  better if I made the center diamond match the top of the dresser with the old leather look.

So I cut out three pieces of brown paper using the cardboard template, then glued it to the drawer using Modge Podge, then painted it with the wood stain.












I like it better with the “leather look” diamonds.

It has a older, more western look to it now.











The next thing I did to the dresser was add some graphics to the stripes next to the diamond. I did not paint these on, I used a graphic that I had printed on my ink jet printer and just Modge Podged it to the drawer like I had the brown paper.











The last thing I did to the drawers was to add nail head tacks to the outline the diamonds, and make it look like the leather diamonds had been nailed onto the drawers.


But what about that broken drawer?

Well… I cut a piece of 1/4″ MDF board the eaxt size of the opening, then covered it with the paper and made it look exactly like the top of the dresser then inserted it as a shelf using 4 L brackets to hold it up.


And here is the finished dresser.















Here are the side by side pictures of the BEFORE and AFTER.





My latest Mural… “Everyone Needs A Friend”

This weekend I painted a mural for a very special little girl. 

My very own daughter.

The BEST part about this mural was that she actually helped me paint it. She has displayed exceptional talent in the arts since she was two years old. So as you look at the pictures for this mural, keep in mind that she painted every bit from beginning to end on the mane and tail of the brown horse. She is only ten years old, so her talent is pretty incredible.


Here is what her room looked like when we started.

Plain, boring white walls…

But for me, white walls are just a blank canvas that I can create a whole new world on. 

So bring on the white walls!

  IMG_0616                   The first thing I always do when I am painting a mural is get the background blocked in. Once you have established the position of the background, putting the main image into the painting becomes a whole lot easier.

I used a gray sky  ACE hardware brand paint in semi gloss latex for the sky. For the ground I used the same brand in a Terra cotta color.


Once you have the background in place you are now ready to draw the main image on the wall.

I like to use a overhead projector to blow the picture up. I will draw out the mural on a plastic paper and then use the machine to project it and make it life size.  This saves me hours of painstaking drawing time. By doing it this way I am able to see exactly where I want the picture to sit on the wall, and know how the entire picture will look BEFORE I ever start drawing.

SO that is my time saving tip for the day


Once you have the image sketched on the wall you can begin to color in the picture.

The first layer of paint will be a lot like coloring a page in a coloring book. There won”t really be any detail yet and the image will look very flat and lifeless at first, but don’t get discouraged. As each new layer of paint goes on, the more dimension your picture will acquire.

IMG_0620                       See how flat the horses look right now. That is NORMAL, and shouldn’t discourage you at all. Just keep on painting. It really does get a lot better. IMG_0621                 Here is another angle of the picture. From this angle you can see how that shadow I blocked in under the horses chin is already starting to create some dimension.   IMG_0624                 In this picture you can see how I am starting to add the different shades of color to the horses skin and mane and tail. This simple act of using lighter and darker shades of the same base color will create the look of muscles on the horse, and give movement to the hair on the mane and tails.   IMG_0626                   In this picture, you can see all the little details that I painted in the eye to make it look round and realistic. I also added some white to her face to give her a little bit more personality.   IMG_0627                   We did the same thing with the black mare. We gave her eyes some detail and then extended her mane so it partially covered her eye. We wanted to give the illusion of a thick, bushy mane on the black horse. IMG_0630                   Here is the finished mural. To complete the background I painted the cactus using four different shades of green paint. By doing this I am able to give the illusion of a round object on a flat wall. Then we just added a few ground details and other desert plants to the wall and that completed the painting. This mural took us 10 hrs to complete.

  Here are a few more pictures of the finished mural.            

The Backdrop for “Off Their Rockers” a school play that my kids are performing in.

My daughters teacher approached me and asked me if I would be willing to paint the backdrop for their upcoming school play. They are doing the musical, “Off their Rockers” in March, so the teacher needed a backdrop that would look like the inside of a rest home. So I purchased two canvas drop cloths that were each 6′ x 9′ and started to paint. Here are the pictures of the process and the finished project. I will post a follow up when they actually do the program and have all the kids in place with the backdrop. But for now. Here is the REST HOME COMMON ROOM.   IMG_0068             You have to look close, but you can see how I have used a charcoal pencil to trace the picture onto the canvas.   IMG_0070           The next step when I am painting a mural of this size is to paint the biggest areas first. For me, it’s just a “mind” trick. I feel like I have made a ton of progress when I get the big areas in, because you can start to see the picture emerge around the painted areas. IMG_0054             Once you start to fill in the images, the project starts to get fun. IMG_0057               If you look close you can see that I have painted the glass in the fireplace surround, and the light in the corner now has some color on it too. IMG_0058               Now we have the rocks on the fireplace, the hearth is blocked in, and the rug has the boarder completed. The vases on the mantle are also starting to take shape. IMG_0067               This is the first of the two canvases to be finished. If you look close in the bottom left corner, you can see the shape of part of the coffee table. That is just there to make sure that I line up the two canvases correctly when we sew them together to make one big 6′ x 18′ mural of the Rest Home.   So… Now lets watch the second canvas take shape…   IMG_0072             Here is the couch that will be facing the fireplace when the two pieces are sewn together. You can also see that the French Doors in the background are blocked in and just awaiting the detail to be added. IMG_0075             I just finished the coffee table and the sofa table behind the couch. The beauty in the picture is my daughter helping me paint the squares on the boarder of the rug. IMG_0077               We are almost finished. I need to decide what kind of art work I will put in the frames on the walls, and then I need to add the details to the room around the corner that will add even more dimension to this mural. IMG_0081               Here is the second canvas all finished. Now lets see them side by side. They are not sewn together yet, and still need a few touch ups now that they are side by side, but for the most part this project is finished… and it only took me 18 hrs. IMG_0084               Don’t mind the clutter, I tend to get a little spread out when I do these murals. But, that’s all just part of the creative process! I would love to hear your thoughts about this project in the comment section below.          

Some of my latest projects…

I actually made all of these projects in December but have just not gotten around to posting pictures of them yet.

I figured that I better get them up on my website.

I appreciate the feedback that you always give me when I post the projects that I have made.

This time I am asking for a different kind of feedback however…

I have had a few requests for painting instructions and patterns.

This is where I would really appreciate some feed back…

If I were to feature a project each month, would you be interested in receiving the pattern and painting instructions?

What would you be willing to pay to have them delivered to your mail box each month?

Would you prefer that they arrive in a digital format, or would you prefer to have them mailed to your physical address?

And would you like patterns for my murals and furniture pieces as well?

Thank you for taking the time to respond to these questions. It will help me know how to move forward in the future.

So, as promised….

Here are the projects that I made to give as gifts this year for Christmas 2015.

mint green snowman














I made 5 of these door hangers to give to my friends this year.

I made them out of 3/4″ MDF. I cut them out, then hand painted the details on each one.

Next, I added glitter to the snowman’s face for that little extra sparkle that I love.

The final step was to glue on the flower and add some beads to the brim of his hat.


recipe holder blocks









The blocks are a fun little neighbor gift that I made using 6″ x 2″ scraps of wood and scrap book paper.

I MODGE PODGED the paper to the blocks.

Then added a burlap ribbon and then I tied the spoon onto the burlap ribbon with a smaller contrasting ribbon.

The last thing I did was I glued on a clip that would hold the recipe card.

These were a big hit!




missionary plaque









I made this one for a co-worker. Her son is on a mission and I wanted to make her something really special to commemorate this once in a lifetime event.




snow man blocks









I made these to pass out around my neighborhood. They are just scraps of wood that I have in my shop and I painted them fun colors then painted on the letters and the face and added a snowflake and glitter to the snowman. I made the carrot nose out of foam core board.




These were a simple project that was a really big hit too.

I had so much fun making Christmas projects this year. It is always so much fun for me to find and then make the projects each year.


So Once again I want to thank you for taking the time to respond to my questions. 
I want to continue to grow my business and the thought of creating patterns and instructions was not something I had ever considered but thanks to my readers, I am now investigating that possibility.




How I updated a wall with 4 old pallets from a coal mine

I have a wall in my house that I really wanted to add old rustic wood to. I love the look and feel of old wood that if full of holes and character.

I have a friend who asked her hubby to bring me some pallets from his work at the coal mine.

When I saw the wood, I was BEYOND excited!

It was perfect for what I had in mind.

I have seen pallet walls all over PINTEREST, and loved the look of them, but what really sold me on them was when a friend asked us to paint her babies nursery and they had installed a pallet wall in her nursery.

I couldn’t believe how beautiful it was in real life.

Right then and there, I decided I just HAD to have one of my own.

So here are the pictures of the pallet wall in my house.

wall before






Here is what the wall looked like before we got started.

wall getting started






In this picture we have got three rows nailed up and have the wood ready for the fourth row.

wall all nailed up






So here is the wall all nailed up. I am so excited to see it with the different stain colors on it.

For this wall I will be using three colors of stain.

I have chosen Golden Oak, Mahogany, and Maple.

wall starting to stain






Here is the wall after I applied the mahogany stain to a few of the boards.

wall up close







Here is a close up look at the wall after all three colors have been applied.

finished wall







Here is a view of the finished wall.

different view finished wall






Just a different view of the finished wall.


wall all decorated







Here it  is with my Headboard Bench and Western Star trunk in front of it.

I am thrilled with the finished wall and so glad that I decided to make my very own PALLET WALL.









My Pallet wood sign

I have a wall in my house that is right at the top of my stairs.

I wanted to make a special sign to hang there that would have an inspirational message for my kids when the walked up the steps every day.

So I found an old pallet and cut it to size.

Then we drilled holes in each of the boards and took a long rope and tied the sign together.

Next I painted the words onto the wood.

Then I stained the wood and added a polyurethane coating to make it shine.

Here is the finished Project.

I love how it looks hanging on the wall.

happiness 1










My Pantry Redo with Dollar Tree Baskets

I have this AMAZING walk in Pantry in my house that I have been wanting to repaint and organize.

I finally had a long weekend to do just that.

I had seen these amazing hammered iron baskets on Pottery Barn for $35.00, and didn’t want to spend that much, but really wanted to have that look in my pantry.

So I went to the local Dollar Tree and purchased 8 of their baskets.

I then went to the paint store and bought 4 cans of KRYLON Hammered Iron spray paint.

The next thing I did was go to Walmart and buy a set of their chalkboard labels to put on my finished baskets.

Now that I had all my supplies ready, I couldn’t wait to get the project started.

Here are the pictures of my progress.

So as you can see…They are a very bright blue color.

This was NOT going to give me the look I was craving, so I laid out a giant tarp and started spray painting.

The next step, once the baskets were all painted was to paint the pantry itself.

I wanted it to be bright, but now just plain white. So I choose a light dove gray color to paint the walls and shelves.

pantry before







You can see the slight difference in the color on the walls as I am cutting in the corners with the gray.

So now…Here is the picture of the finished pantry..

pantry after










I love how it turned out. But I have to say, the BEST part was that this entire transformation only cost me $32.00. That is LESS THAN the cost of ONE basket from Pottery Barn.


Our Christmas Decorations for 2015

My oldest son Tyler and I love to decorate our house every year for Christmas.

Each Year we try to out-do ourselves.

We don’t compete with anyone but ourselves.

We do it just for the fun time we have together designing and then creating a “ONE OF A KIND” display for our house.

So this year, we decided to create a fun Ginger Bread House display.

We called our yard Candy Cane Lane, and centered our ideas around that theme.

We hope that you will enjoy the pictures of our 2015 Christmas Display.



xmas house candy cane lane







This Sign that I found at our local Magnuson Lumber  was the inspiration piece that everything else was created around.

If we were going to have a “Candy Cane Lane, we needed to line our walkway with candy cane lights.

(These are so fun at night when they light up.)



So now that the side windows were decorated, I needed to do something fun with the three big windows on the other side of the porch.

So here is what we came up with.

So now that the windows were done, we needed to decorate the front door.

For this, I found some candy striped wrapping paper and just wrapped the front door in it and added ribbons and a bow and a little tag to mimic a gift.

xmas house front door








The last thing that needed to be decorated was the lawn out in front of the house.

I made three little gingerbread people and some large starlight mint candies to go go on either side of our Candy Cane Lane Post.

The last thing we did was to add seven starlight mint candies to the pitch detail on the front of the house and lined the window wells with sugar coated gumdrops.

We then hung over 1,000 lights on the house to illuminate all the decorations.

xmas house candy circles








We hope that all those who drive by will feel the Holiday Spirit that we tried hard to bring to our street.

We love decorating for the holiday and I hope that you enjoy the pictures.





How the Grinch Collects Food For Christmas

This year at my school, the lunch ladies wanted to organize a food drive to collect food for our local Food Bank.

They want to help feed the needy people in our area.

So they asked me for help to create a focal point that would encourage the kids to participate and really donate BIG!

Our  lunch ladies thought that if they used the Grinch, it would make a big statement and really help in collecting lots of food for the Food Bank.

They have told the kids that they get to help the Grinch grow his heart even bigger this year.


So enjoy the pictures and watch as I turn plain old cardboard into some of the season’s most beloved characters.


cindy and max on cardboard









This is Cindy Lou and Max. As you can see they began as a cardboard box, but now they are starting to take shape.


cindy and amx painted









Here they are all painted. Cindy Lou stands 2′ 4″. and Max with his antlers is as tall as her.


grinch on cardboard









Here is the Grinch.

Now all he needs is some color.

grinch painted









Here he is in all his glory. He stands 5′ tall.


grinch and crew all painted






Here they all are standing next to my 12 yr old. This gives you a really good idea of their size.


grinch sled painted








Here is the Grinch’s Sled. We will put this on either side of a large pallet to collect the food on.


grinch set up at school











Here they are all set up and as you can see, his sled is already filling up fast.