Dickey's Decor

Home, Garden and More

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Recycled Fence

I have always been a gardener. When I was in high school I was known for "borrowing" flowers and arranging them for friends. I was the only one in college to actually plant pots for my various porches. When my husband and I moved into our first rental home I used my tip money to buy different kinds of lavender. Our first home boasted a .25 acre lot. It was a great corner lot with views of the Columbia River Gorge. I made massive mistakes with this yard. I ripped out bushes, cut down trees and removed everything so I could start from scratch. I had almost no shade and I made full use of the sun. Two years after moving in we had what my husband called a jungle. I called it an English Country Garden and later called it a mistake. Don't get me wrong it was beautiful, but it was time consuming and after the birth of my son I couldn't keep up with it. I spent hours keeping the yard up, but finally had to hire help.
Our second, and current, home has .50 acres. I was smarter this time. I lived in the house for awhile before I ripped things out. I let the yard speak to me. I was lucky that someone long ago had foresight and put in some great hardscaping. However, behind the fence was the jungle.
The jungle was a green space that the neighbors eventually purchased from the city in order to keep them from building a walking path behind our homes. Since all the neighbors fenced in their original yards they used this green space as a dumping ground. Our green space included old cyclone fencing, numerous broken pool instruments, a broken jungle gym, buried bricks (I found them one day as I was digging and thought I had found gold), plain old garbage and more. Many years ago a trolley made it's way through this area and once in awhile I will find a really old liqueur bottle.
Anyway, one stormy day the fence separating the two areas fell leaving us with this:

This was a major problem because now my two Boston Terriers were able to access the green space of that runs behind all of our neighbor's properties and on the other side of the green space is some condos and apartments with horrible fencing. After two trips in the car to retrieve my errant dog in an apartment complex I knew we had to do something. Have you ever tried to yell at a dog at two in the morning who chases after some creature? You sound crazy.
The problem was fencing this hilly area was going to be costly...as in $5000. Ugh. I have too many other things to spend my money on. We also wanted to maintain the "rustic" look of this yard. I call it the natural section of the yard and the other part "manicured". On the way to my sister's house is a fence company that often would pile up old sections of fencing they had taken down. They give it away for people to use for fire wood. I got an idea. Many of the fence sections were in good condition. What if we took the boards off and reused them?
We decided to buy new posts and build the frame from new materials and use the recycled fence boards for the sides. At the top we didn't want to see a fence, but wanted to see the greenery beyond. We bought sections of cattle fencing that kept the dogs in, but allowed us the visual effect we were after. Here is what we ended up with:

 The gate was from my parents house.

 This is the view behind our pool fence. This area was covered in blackberry bushes when we moved in. Behind the picket fence is my compost bins.
This is another view at the top of the hill.

When all was said and done the fence cost us about $800 for materials and some labor (we made friends dig holes). The fence is perfect for what we needed and certainly looks rustic. It is sturdy and when boards begin to break or rot we can pop them off and replace them. I may get motivated this summer and even up the tops of the boards a little,but then again maybe I won't. It is RAINY here in the Pacific Northwest and I am ready for spring. Unfortunately, we won't see good weather for at least another two months. In the meantime I am planning the shed and chicken enclosure from recycled materials. Let's see how much I can save there.

Saturday, February 18, 2012

$6 Starburst Mirror in 28 Minutes

I have gazed at all of the starburst mirrors from afar. I am drawn to them, but in the back of my mind they remind me of my college days when I was goo goo over moons and star decorations. Ask any of my roommates and they might tell you about the cabinet I spray painted navy blue and painted with gold moons, stars and suns. I even attempted to sew a wrap around skirt out of a fantastically gaudy celestial print (OMG did I just admit to wearing those? I better be careful because with the way things are going they will be back next year).
A few weeks ago I picked up a round mirror at an estate sale for $2. It is pocked perfectly with age. A few months ago I bought a pack of shims to make wooden stars for Christmas (never happened). Last weekend as I was tinkering in the garage an idea was hatched. I sprayed the shims with my Stainless Steel paint (sadly this emptied my can) and some gold I had on hand. They sat waiting patiently until Friday. I got home from work at 3:10 and had to go pick up Delia from school at 3:40. I had thirty minutes. Should I take a cat nap? Do some laundry? Make a starburst mirror?
I ran downstairs and grabbed my glue gun and by 3:38 I completed this:

Another view...

 Ughh those ugly yellow walls again. They are killing me. I think tomorrow I will stop by Home Depot and pick up some paint.

Livin' Green

For whatever reason this year I wasn't feelin' the love. I decorated the house for Valentine's Day on January 15th and the night of Valentines they were coming down because I was over it. The next day I busted out the Saint Patrick's Day decorations and got busy. I kept things pretty simpleonly decorating the shelving around the television downstairs and my kitchen bay window. I almost decorated the mantle, but decided I want to leave it unadorned for now.

Here is the front window (I can't manage to get a shot of the entire thing very well):

A closer look...

I love this little guy. I purchased a frame at the Dollar Store, painted it green, sprinkled it with some glitter and inserted this great picture I got from Graphic Fairy. I printed it on a piece of vintage sheet music.

Here is a closer look at the U in my LUCKY banner. The flash on the camera isn't working that well so this is as good as it gets. Guess what we are going to buy with our tax return?

Oh and I found a lampshade for the lamp in the entry way. It was a whopping $3 at Salvation Army. It is simple burlap. I may embellish it a bit, but for now I like it's simplicity.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Phoenix Rising

Two years ago one of my dearest friend's had a house fire. The majority of the fire took place in the garage, but the smoke damage was extensive. They "got" to live in a hotel for a month and a rental home for at least four months. It was painful to watch them go through this life changing event and do little to support them. Today they are back in their home and believe me they appreciate every single day and live life to it's fullest. I am blessed to have her and her husband in my life.

This summer a desk was delivered to my house. My friend's children weren't interested in this family piece and she knew I would do something with it. She even told me to fix it up and sell it. It was sturdy, strong and in good shape with the exception of the water damage to the finish from the fire. It sat in the garage through the fall and into the winter holding various boxes and junk. I was waiting for inspiration.
My daughter had a secretary style dress with tiny drawers in her room. It was covered with papers, stickers, craft supplies and junque. A light bulb went off. It would be perfect for Delia's room.
Here is what it looked like on Saturday:

The drawers still show where the smoke damaged them.

I primed it well and spray painted the drawers (simply because it was easier).  I spray painted them with my current favorite Stainless Steel.This was a $2 can of paint because the top had been pulled off. I have painted a ton of stuff with that two bux. After a good coat of primer I painted two coats of Sherwin William's Pink Amour. It is such a light pink that it is difficult to even tell in my pictures that is is indeed pink. It is a lovely shade and I want to eat it.

I wanted to get a picture of the inside of the drawers, but before I could a little squirrel stowed their treasures in it. Our next project is to paint the nightstand and chair to match. It has turned out perfectly and I hope it inspires Delia to embrace pastel pinks when we begin her room makeover in March. She wants vivid pinks and I want light pink. Who will win the battle? Only time will tell.

I can't wait for my friend to come see it. I am that friend who doesn't get emotional and am not a touchy feely type. Barb, is the opposite. I know she will get weepy and emotional enough for the both of us. This Phoenix has  risen from the ashes and is a tribute to her because every time I look at the desk I feel all happy inside.

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Have Bed Will Travel

A few weeks ago I picked up an old suitcase at an estate sale. I had big plans for this baby. This is what she looked like before.

I will not pretend that this idea was of my own invention. This past summer I saw this somewhere (Pintrest? Etsy? A blog?). I have searching for suitcases ever since. Here is the after:

The inside is in immaculate condition, but the pocket doesn't lay very nice when the lid is up. I actually glued it up a bit after I took this picture. These pockets and once on the sides would be great storage for leashes, balls, bones and more when you take your dog on a trip.  Here is what it looks like closed.

A closer look at the feet. I picked these up at a thrift store this summer and sprayed them with my current favorite Stainless Steel. They are easy to unscrew. In fact, you could take them off and throw them in the suitcase for a traveling dog bed.

Delia and I tried to get the dogs to pose, but my dog babies aren't fans of any bed but mine. While I designed it as a dog bed it could be used as a foot stool, a little table or simple storage. I LOVE it and wish I could keep it, but alas I think it is something I will be selling soon.

Monday, February 6, 2012

It Wasn't Broken When I Bought It

I was redoing the entry way and needed a credenza type table. You know how when you are looking for something you can never find what you need? Well, it was late Saturday night and I started perusing Craigslist and up this puppy came:

Now, the best part was it was located close (as in three miles away) and they were excellent at communicating. I swung by, check it out and even kicked the legs to make sure they were sturdy. I paid what they were asking (I generally pay the "this is all I have game") and started to load it into the old Volvo. As my son and I were pushing it in I broke a leg (table leg).
I had to come home and bust out the Guerrilla Glue. This made me mad because it was going to postpone my plans. Oh, well.
Here is the lady with primer...

 All finished...

Semi gussied up. Does anyone have an idea for a lampshade? I am in need of one.

 The color on the table is Watery. I was going to do some distressing, but figure it will happen in due time. There is some debate as to if this will be a permanent home for the table. My husband feels it doesn't allow people enough room to get in the door. I said we can poll guests to see what they think. If they agree I will sell it. This is a win-win situation.

Grand Entrance

The very first room I painted upon moving into our home was the entry way. I don't remember what color the walls were (most likely a cream), but I wanted to make a statement when people walked in. I painted it a dark cinnamon rust and loved it. Six years later I still loved it, but wanted to lighten things up. I find my color palette has changed recently to lights. I don't dig those bright colors that seem to be popping up all over, give me a muted grey any day. Anyway, this weekend (before I came down with a cold) I tackled the entry way.

A few things to note. My entry way was SIX doors. To the left of the front door is the coat closet, to the right is a door leading into our kitchen (If you walk around the corner there is a huge opening so this makes no sense. It is on my big to do list to remove  the entire corner, but I have some work to do before this happens). Further down on the left hand wall is another door that leads to bedrooms (it is nice to be able to shut it off) and directly in front of the door is the door leading to the basement and another closet. Whew. Talk about a lot of cutting in! I realized as I painted, the first time I did it had a six month old. Let's just say my last job  was SLOPPY.
I started on Friday night when the boys were out at the Blazer game. I had a little help from my friend...

Here is the after...

The wall color is Martha Stewart Copen Blue. Now I am usually a Sherwin Williams addict, but they were closed and I needed my fix. Martha had an almost perfect match to what I had chosen. This is the "Jew Pew" (In all due respect people). I placed two vintage ticking pillows on it. I am looking for a better basket to go underneath the bench (This is our lost and found and our friends and family look here often. By the way anyone missing a camcorder? It has been here for three years). The picture is one of my favorites. I purchased at our local high school's student art auction. My daughter recently gave it a tattoo on the arm. Argh.

The table I found off of Craigslist undecorated. The verdict is still out as to whether or not it will remain here. My husband says it is beginning to look like Hoarders around here. The color on this is Sherwin Williams Watery.

Here it is decorated. I am on the search for the perfect lampshade. I will also be taking down the light switch cover and replacing it with a painted one so it will blend in better. I wish I could lower the mirror, but alas someone decided to put the switch here. Looking at this picture it really bugs me.

Closer look at the pew. This is one of my most favorite things.

The numbers on the pew. I can't bring myself to do anything but keep it polished.

I added the wainscoting and hung a chair railing. I am really proud to say I overcame my fear of the big saw and did all the work myself. I love the way it turned out and can't wait to add some finishing touches as they speak to me. I had every intention of adding some shelves in coat closet, but after purging it I realized it works fine and there is no need for shelves so I left it alone. Sometimes I like to make my husband happy.

Paint-$36 (a lot for me, but it was primer and paint and I only needed one coat even with the dark color to cover)
Chair rail-$14
New to me table- $20
Total for the makeover-$94
I still need to find a rug and a lampshade, but after that I believe she is done. Oh wait about that other closet...

Saturday, February 4, 2012

And the Winner Is...

The winner of the LOVE banner is Lori Morrison. I tried to figure out how to contact you, but had no luck sooooo this means you need to send me an email with your address and I will get it out as soon as I can. My email is leahaltig@yahoo.com.
I have been busy enjoying my kids this weekend and in between outings have began the entryway remodel. I am hoping to get it mostly finished tomorrow so I can reveal it soon.

There are those ugly walls again. After five and a half years of having our kitchen this color my husband told me he hates the color. This basically gives me permission to get painting.