The DIY journey of a California citygirl and a Montana farmboy

Do It Yourself Barn Door

DIY Barn Door

You can make your own barn door with just a few simple tools!

 

Who loves barn doors but doesn’t want to hire someone to build it for you?  You are in the right place, because that is how I felt.  So I set out to find an easy build that I could do on my own – and here is how I did it.  Best part is it cost me under $75 for this 6 foot by 3 foot door!

 

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Follow along with my 60 second tutorial and then check out all the details below!

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Do It Yourself Spring Porch Decor

Shop Your Own Home

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There are simple ways to spice up your front porch for spring – without spending lots of cash.  SHOP YOUR OWN HOME!  Have you ever tried that?  Walk around and see what you have that will work outside for the time being and take a chance at it.  Let me show you what I found in my home to move outside and spice up my porch – without spending a dime.

 

Wreath

I grabbed a wreath I have inside my home from FloralTreasure that I love.  I used a 3M velcro hook to keep it hung well.

FloralTreasure has handmade wreaths that smell AMAZING because they grow and harvest all the wreaths themselves on their farm.  And their prices are cheaper than retail stores!  Check them out here.

 

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Pillows and Blankets

You can change up your pillows constantly to create a new look.  I snagged these darling ones off of my couch to add to the hand-me-down chairs I received from my darling neighbor for FREE (yippee!!).

These pillows are handmade from my girlfriend Faith at FaithandChloeDesigns.  I love the farmhouse style and vintage look.  Check out her instagram page here for all her designs!

 

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I then added a blanket I had on my couch from Cloth and Cabin.  They have darling pieces for your home (and your body!).  Check them out here.

Outdoor Mat

I decided to layer some mats that I had already.  The bottom one I grabbed from Ikea last month for $14!  There is a darling shop that I love called The Cheeky Doormat that I found on Instagram here.  The top one was custom made by them and I added it right on top of the Ikea mat – check them out at The Cheeky Doormat.

 

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Decor

I chose to grab a plant from my bathroom, a plant hanger from the garden, and a lantern from my living room.  Super simple (that’s how we roll around here) and it worked well for my style.

 

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So what can you shop from your home to create a NEW LOOK for NO COST in your home?  I can’t wait to see what you come up with!

 

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Love,

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Do It Yourself Plastic Pipe Shelf

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I love plumbers pipe shelving but they aren’t a very inexpensive project – the piping cost quite a bit.  I was thinking the other day I could create the same look with PVC pipe, so I tried it out and it worked!  They are not as strong as metal pipe, so I wouldn’t recommend using the shelving for super heavy items.  But it is still pretty sturdy.

Here is my 60 second DIY Tutorial for you to watch, then read on for all the details!

 

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Do It Yourself – Farmhouse Sign

Make this sign in 7 simple steps, come join me!

 

DIY Farmhouse Sign

 

Ever since I started documenting my home decor journey I have been crushin on all these farmhouse signs.  You can pay to get one made, and often they aren’t cheap.  But if you don’t have the time and you do have the money – go for it!  If you want to try and make one yourself, check out this process that is SUPER easy and SUPER inexpensive (under $20!!!).  The only downside?  It does take your time.  But if you turn on some tunes or your favorite book and get to work, you mind find out how much you enjoy this kind of thing.

Check out my 60 second DIY Farmhouse Sign tutorial and then follow along for all the details!

 

 

Supplies Needed:

  • 1×10 wood board: 4-8 feet long, depending on how many letters you are using
  • Stain (I like Minwax Provincial or Walnut)
  • White Paint (I use Behr Paint and Primer)
  • Paint and staining brush
  • Rags
  • Vaseline
  • Modge Podge
  • Mirror image prints
  • Frosting knife (or any tool with a rounded edge)
  • Corner brackets (optional)

 

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Step One – Stain Your Wood

I chose not to sand down my piece of wood because I wanted it rustic.  Feel free to sand your edges before staining if you would like them softer.   Grab your stain, darker is better.  It will show through the chippy paint areas.  I added Weathered Oak first, let dry, then add Provincial around the edges for some darker spots.  This isn’t necessary.

P.S. Forgive my grainy photos!  I only video taped this DIY and had to take stills from the movie!

 

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Step Two – Add Vaseline

Lets learn how to achieve the chippy look.  I have a detailed blog post here on how to achieve the distressed look using wax as well.

Take your vaseline and rub it lightly onto the edges and corners of your board.  Miss some spots on purpose.  Then add some in sporadic spots on your board.   The more you use the more of the stain will show through for your outcome.

 

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Step Three – Paint Your Wood

Add a layer of white paint (or any color your prefer) to your board.  It doesn’t have to be super covered well, just “good enough.”  I use Behr Paint and Primer – I love it for the chippy look!  Let fully dry before the next step.

 

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Step Four – Print & Cut Your Words

This part is a little tricky if you do not know how to print mirror image.  Depending on the computer you have, it can be different for each.  Here is a link to teach you:

How to print a mirror image

Type out your word and mess with the fonts.  I really like Bordeaux Roman Bold LET for my signs.  You can fit about 3 letters per sheet if you use the 800 size.   If you don’t have that font you can download it here.

 

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Make sure you fiddle with it on your board to make sure it fits before the next step, which is cutting the letters.  You will cut as close to the edge as possible, keeping letters connected if you can.  This helps the placement goes smoother.

 

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Step Five – Glue Your Letters

You will dip your brush into the modge podge and gentle wipe ON THE INK SIDE of the first set of letters you are going to lay down.  Be gentle so you don’t rip your letters.  You have to take special care when laying them down because they are sticky.  You will only have a few seconds to move them around if you need before the glue thickens up.  I had a measuring tape to make sure the top and bottom spacing were the same.

Also make sure to get glue over the entire letter.  Every bit of ink must have glue on it to adhere well to the board.

 

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You will press the letters fully onto the board to make sure no bubbles are left behind.  Let dry completely according to directions before moving on to the next step.

 

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Step Six – Remove Paper

Here is the fun part!  Grab a rag and get it pretty wet.  Not dripping, but still really moist.  Gently press it onto all of your letters, one at a time.  This will start the process and help with removal.

 

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Once that is done, head back to the first letter.  You will gently and slowly rub the letter to remove the paper.  This will leave the ink on the board.  If you rub too much the ink will come off too.  If you do rub some ink off, just press it back in place.  It will dry fine.  It’s ok to have some ink rubbed off if you are going for a really rustic look like I was.  This process takes time, but is worth it.  It’s going to look amazing!

 

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Step Seven – Chip Your Paint

I like to use my frosting knife because it is round but not sharp.  You can use any like tool for this.  You will take the edge and start LIGHTLY scratching areas of your wood.  The edges and around letters are especially good spots.  You can also scrape off any extra paper you may have left that needs to be removed.  The more you scrape, the more chippy your board will be!

 

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I added metal brackets to my edges for a more complete look.  You can find these in the knob and drawer handle isle at Home Depot!  Spray paint the color you want and drill them on.

 

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Your all done!  Such a fun sign for a great price point.  Let us know how yours turns out!

Love,

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One Room Challenge Spring Reveal

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I am so excited!  Today is the day!  The last few weeks have been such a good experience for me.  It pushed me to learn new skills and I love the outcome.   I am so grateful to the One Room Challenge team for helping all types of decorators feel like they have value in their creativity.  So many are revealing their spaces today on the One Room Challenge Blog – I can’t wait for you to see them all!  Are you ready for mine?

Project One – Shiplap COST $92.00   Read all about that project here

Project Two – Window Valences COST $45.00   Read all about that project here

Project Three – Custom Shutters COST $15.00   Read all about that project here

Project Four – Blinds  COST $200.00  Read all about that project here

Let me remind you where I started:

 

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This was my living room wall.  I wanted to renovate it and add some character.  Since I am a DIYer on a budget, everything had to be created by me.  I gave myself $500 to renovate this space – and I did it!  You can read about my initial ideas here on my first post with the One Room Challenge.  This was my sketch of what I wanted to have happen.

 

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Follow along to see how close I can get to my original idea!

Project One – Shiplap

You can read the full blog post here, but lets recap.  I spent $92 on my materials from The Home Depot.  I used tongue and groove pre-primed shiplap.  I always paint my first coat before I install, and I loved partnering with HomeRite Super Finish Max Paint Sprayer.  It was super easy to use and made my life so much better!  You can order one here on Amazon for a great price point.

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Install was fast and super helpful with my TackLIFE laser level and laser measuring tape.  You can grab tons of TackLIFE tools for a great deal on Amazon here.

 

 

 

Here is my final shiplap look:

 

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Project Two – Window Valances

I love the wood window valances that the Shanty2Chic sisters made here.  So I created my own style and love how they turned out.   You can learn the whole process and how easy it is here.   Total cost was $45 (grabbed clearance curtains from TJ Max and curtain rods from Walmart).

 

 

Here is my final window valance look:

 

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Project Three – Shutters

I have always wanted some of these and decided on a look I wanted after scanning Pinterest for days (kidding).  They were only $15 to make and add so much to the room!  Find out how to make yours here.  Additionally I added a family portrait that I had made previously so that is very inexpensive, you can read all about that DIY here.

 

 

Here is my final farmhouse shutters look:

 

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Project Four – Blinds

I love SelectBlinds and have used them for 15 years.  They are super EASY to order, EASY to install, and EASY on the pocketbook.  Did I mention they were easy?  Ha. Ha. Wink. Wink.  I ordered FAUX WOOD, you can get them for a great price with all the sales they run here.

 

 

Here is my final blinds look:

 

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Final REVEAL Day –

Such a fun adventure.  I learned so many new things, how to make new DIY’s and use tools I haven’t tried before.  One item that I added last minute was the Wood Mantel.  It was a quick addition and I love the character it adds to the room.  Here is the final look:

 

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I had some more GREAT companies that I used to finish up my decor.  Niki is a great friend and makes amazing wood word signs (from Carpenterfarmhouse).

I ordered her THIS IS US sign from her Etsy shop here, the sizes start at only $15!

 

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Next I grabbed some darling pillows handmade from Megan at DoeRaeMeDesigns.  I love her taste and style!  I grabbed two Staple White pillow cases that you can order here.

 

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Finally I had an amazing time working with Danielle from The Rusted Carriage.   She helped me pick out some items for my mantel and I finally got some cotton stems (I have always wanted some!).  Her Etsy shop is closing for the summer so she can spend time with family, so all her deals are on sale – you will love her stuff!  Grab some here.

 

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My lanterns were from TJ Max and I made the Family Name sign many years ago.

 

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Here is a timelaspe of the decorating process.  Now I need a big long nap!

 

 

 

I honestly can’t wait for the next challenge.  Laundry room time!

Love,

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 One Room Challenge – Week Four

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DIY Install Blinds

 

We are so close to the finish line and it has been so much fun!  Make sure you follow along here with all of the designers this time around to get all the inspiration you need to do this yourself.  I am already thinking about what room I want to refinish for the Fall ORC (think stenciled flour in the laundry room people!).

 

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One of my last steps was to add blinds to my newly renovated windows. Of course I can’t make my own blinds, but I want to show you how easy it is to install them ALL BY YOURSELF!  This was my week four challenge to accomplish.  Here is my update so far:

Here is my 6 week outline:

Project One – Shiplap COST $92.00   Read all about that project here

Project Two – Window Valences COST $45.00   Read all about that project here

Project Three – Custom Shutters COST $15.00   Read all about that project here

Project Four – Blinds  COST $200.00 

Project Five – Decorating and Reveal 

DIY Video Tutorial

Check out my DIY Video Tutorial to watch our install process and then follow along below for lots of details you won’t want to miss!

Continue reading

  One Room Challenge – Week Three

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Farmhouse Shutters

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So, the One Room Challenge Reveal is in TWO DAYS and I haven’t shared my updates!  So I am going to share my farmhouse shutters today, my blinds tomorrow and my reveal on Thursday – here we go!  As always, check out the other amazing ladies here who are participating on the Spring 2018 One Room Challenge with me!

Here’s my 6 week outline:

Project One – Shiplap COST $92.00   Read all about that project here

Project Two – Window Valences COST $45.00   Read all about that project here

Project Three – Custom Shutters COST $15.00

Project Four – Blinds

Project Five – Decorating

 

DIY VIDEO TUTORIAL 

Here is my 60 second video tutorial on how to make the farmhouse shutters on your own.  Then follow along for all the extra details below!

 

Continue reading

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– One Room Challenge – Week Two –

I am loving this challenge still!  My project this week was to create wood valances for my window treatments.  So come follow along as I show you how to do it too!  Make sure you check out all the ladies in this challenge over at OneRoomChallenge.com for lots of inspiration.  You will love what these designers are coming up with!

Do It Yourself Wood Valance in 10 Steps

 

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Here’s my 6 week outline:

Project One – Shiplap COST $92.00

Project Two – Window Valences COST $45.00

Project Three – Custom Shutters

Project Four – Blinds

Project Five – Decorating

I will give you a quick review of what the first three weeks have looked like:

Week One:  Empty Walls  (see the beginning of our journey here)

 

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Week Two:  Add Shiplap (read all about it here)

 

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Week Three:  Add Wood Valances

 

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Ready to learn how to get it done?!  Here we go:

Supplies Needed:

  • 1×6 Board (two 6-8 feet long)
  • 1×4 Board (one 6-8 feet long)
  • 1×3 Board (one 6-8 feet long)
  • Stain or Paint
  • Paint Brush and old rags
  • Two Curtain Rods
  • Screws (1 1/2 inch)
  • Kreg Screws (1 1/2 inch)
  • 3 1/2 inch wood screws (I use hex head screws)

Tools Needed:

 

Here is my 60 second Do It Yourself Video Tutorial so you can get a quick glimpse of how it is to be done!

Step One – Measure Your Windows

Each window is different so I will not be giving you the measurements of my window.  But you will understand the measurements you will need create your valance.

 

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  1. You will need to take the measurement of the window opening and add 2 inches to each side.
  2. The curtain rods are about 3 1/2 inches deep, so you will plan on 4 1/2 inches on each side of the valance.

Step Two – Buy Your Wood and Rods

Head over to Home Depot to grab your wood.  You can find curtain rods there as well, Walmart or order them on amazon.  Make sure you grab 2 and that they are the length you need.

 

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Step Three – Cut Your Wood

Grab your circular saw and some saw horses or a table.  Make sure you lines are as straight as possible (this is my weakness!).

 

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  • You will cut one of the 1×6 pieces to the length of your window plus the 2 inches on each side.  Cut two of these.   
    • Length of Window + 2 inches = FIRST CUT (2)
  • You will measure the width of your rod – add this measurement plus 1.5 inches.  You will make 4 cuts of this measurement using 1×6 pieces.
    • Width of rod + 1.5 inches = SECOND CUT (4)
  • You will measure the length of your first cut MINUS 1.5 inches (you are going to add this as your top piece and it fits in between the two side brackets of wood – hence the minus 1/5 inches).
    • Length of first cut  – 1.5 inches = THIRD CUT (2)

 

Step Four – Pocket Holes

If you have never drilled pocket holes before you need to read up on this.  It isn’t hard, you just need a small amount of training.  Refer to my post here on using a Kreg Jig.

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Kreg Jig K4 Master System

 

  • You will add ZERO pocket holes to your first cut.
  • You will add 2 pocket holes to each second cut.
  • You will add 3 pocket holes to each third cut.

 

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Step Five – Put Together Your Valance

Add your side braces to your first cut like this:

 

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Then you will add your second piece.  This is the top part of your valance and the way you will attach it onto the wall.

 

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Step Six – Sand and Stain

You will sand down your valance and then wipe off any extra sawdust.  Pick your stain and get to work.

I first stained with Varathane Briarsmoke and let dry.

 

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I rubbed on a small layer of Beeswax for a distressed look.

 

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Then I painted with a top coat of Behr Paint and Primer – Tan.  Once dry, I sanded lightly and this was my outcome (I LOVED IT!):

 

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Step Seven – Mount Your Rod

You will look for the studs and mount your rod brackets there, at the end of each window.

 

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Step Eight – Attach Your Brace

This is the 1×3 wood piece that you will attach your valance too.  Find the studs (this is very important for a secure brace) and mount right above your metal bracket for your rod.  This is where you use your hex head 3.5 screws.  The hex heads give me more grip with my drill.  You need this long to go all the way through your 1×3 brace, the sheet rock, and then into the stud.  Use a level to make sure its even, your valance will be crooked if this is not straight.

 

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Step Nine – Attach Your Curtains

Slip your curtains onto your rod and attach it to your window.  You are almost done!

 

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Step Ten – Mount Your Valance

You will now add your completed valance.  You will lay it over the brace and curtain rod.  Make sure it is measured even.  You will take your screws and add one on the top middle area of the valance, attaching the top piece of wood to your sturdy brace.  Then add one to each end of the valance.  See the video tutorial for how I did this.

 

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It is all done!  Yah!  I love the look it gives this room.  I found some darling curtains at TJ Max for inexpensive.  Now I get to rest for the weekend before I start my shutters!

 

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Happy Building!

Love,

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– One Room Challenge – Week One

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Do It Yourself Shiplap

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I am loving this challenge so far, because it keeps me on a schedule and pushes me to get things done.  I am good with a schedule!  Continue to check out all the guests for the One Room Challenge here as well as the 20 influencers participating – its amazing!

Here’s my 6 week outline:

Project One – Shiplap

Project Two – Window Valences

Project Three – Custom Shutters

Project Four – Blinds

Project Five – Decorating

As you know I am working on my living room for this challenge and giving it a facelift.  This is my before:

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So this last week I created my design through sketch to visualize what I wanted to have happen (you can read last weeks post here to see all my plans!).  Just a ruler and pencil is all you need!

 

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My base change of the room is shiplap.  Thanks to Jo Jo we are all loving this stuff.  I have written an in depth tutorial on shiplap here that is a good resource if you haven’t worked with it before.  This time around I tried some new these that I will share.

Step One – Measure

You will want to measure how much shiplap boards you will need.  You do this by taking the area of the wall and subtracting spaces that will not be used (windows and fireplace in my case).  You can use a measuring tape or a laser measure.  I used a laser measure because my room was so big and I was doing it alone.

I love this one from TACKlife.  It is super easy to use and inexpensive, it’s the TACKLife S2-40M Laser Measure and you can order it here from Amazon for $29.

 

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I wasn’t sure how to best get started and learned from a great YouTube tutorial here from TheMrFinneth – it was very helpful.

This laser measure helped me measure the area of the room, windows and fireplace.  My total needed square feet was almost 80 square feet.

Note:  I partnered with TACKlife and HomeRight for this project and loved their products.  These are not affiliate links that I share today, just links for my followers to buy the products if they need them. \

 

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Step Two – Purchase Shiplap

Instead of using a plywood board that is ripped (cut) into 6 inch strips, I opted to use the pre-cut MDF shiplap at The Home Depot this time.  The price was not much different and since it was already primed I liked the idea.  It is heavier to work with though (just beware.)  It cost me $100 for the amount that I needed.

 

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They also carry Pine Shiplap for a slightly higher price point.

 

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I loaded it up and headed home!

 

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Step Three – Paint First Coat

I always paint my first coat before I mount it.  This is optional.  I am just not at good painting and I always tape wrong, therefore getting paint on my walls.  So painting first is my option.  I will add another coat when it is up on the wall, but it is not as detailed.

I used a spray gun for this part and I LOVED IT.  These tools are not that expensive and are so handy.  I partnered with HomeRight and tried their HomeRight Super Finish Max Extra C800971 Paint Sprayer, that you can purchase here from Amazon for $99.

 

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You have to add water to your paint (I used Sherman Williams that was mixed especially to match my baseboards) according to the directions.  I sprayed outside and let fully dry before bringing into the house.

 

 

Step Four – Finding Studs

You will measure for your studs using a stud finder and mark them throughout the entire wall.   Then will make lines connecting the marks vertical so you can see where each stud is as you nail.  This can be done with a chalk line or a laser level.

I used the Zircon Stud Finder that you can buy here and it works well for only $12!

 

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Then I connect the marks I made using my TACKlife Laser Level.  This is a great cross line laser tool that you can purchase here.

 

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Using a tripod I was able to keep my line steady and match it up to the marks so I could draw a line.   Once all the studs were found I was ready to add my boards.

 

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Step Five – Mount Your Shiplap

Here I used my Ridgid Nail Gun and air compressor.  Here is how to load your gun:

 

 

Now charger your compressor and get ready to nail!  You will have to make sure that you are not following the line of your ceiling because that isn’t always straight.  Here again you will use the Laser Level to help you stay accurate.  You will need your circular handsaw to make the measured cuts.  Generally you will stag your boards like this:

 

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You will use a jigsaw to work your way around the not so straight spaces.  Make sure to be VERY careful around the light switches when you have the plate removed.  I would recommend turning off the power to that area to be fully safe.

 

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This space was SO HARD.  I cut it a zillion times.

 

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It took me 3 days to get the shiplap done, and I worked about 3-4 hours day.  I can’t wait to get painting!

Step Six – Spakling

Here is a video I made of what I use for spakling, how I did it and how to clean it off.  Basically you add your spakling, let dry, and sand off!

 

Once this space is ready you will get all the painting done.

So it has been a successful week!  Can’t wait to start working on my window valences now – stay tuned…

 

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Love,

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Antiquing Wax

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After refinishing the base of my 25 year old green cedar chest, I decided I wanted to finish the top of it just slightly different.  I chose to use a method called “antiquing” and just loved the way it turned out.

Check out the process I used to finish the base using Country Chic Chalk Paint here:

Distressing Furniture

This is the piece before and then after:

 

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Check out my 60 second tutorial and then follow along below for all the details!

 

Continue reading

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