DIY Project

Swap The Laundry Over

It’s hard to believe that one of the smallest rooms in the house still isn’t finished, but it’s true.  I did manage to get the desk top upstairs and in place. I wanted to make sure it actually fit. After staring at my fabric cover in purple, green and grey floral I decided it was too many colors.  Small room, stick with a simple color palette.

Folding Station Top

So I found a different upholstery fabric at Hancock on sale and bought just enough to cover the top.  Not sure if I explained before that my easy solution was to use the trusty staple-gun to simply attached the fabric on each side.

Fabric Option #2

However, if I take a little bit longer to hem the edges, and attach with pieces of velcro, I will have the ability to remove the cover and wash it.  Plus, I’m hoping it will be less wear on the table top, should it need to find a new home.

Get to Hemming

Look Ma, I’m using my Bernina!


“Spruce News” – Feast on this Buffet

While trolling around craigslist, a while back, I came across of steal of a deal that I couldn’t pass up.  An 80’s classic maple-oak buffet, but with a unique scrolling, filigree detail running along the edge of the top.  At $20, I wasn’t too concerned with ruining it, and decided this would be a great chance to practice my “gel staining” technique.  Basically, this was my practice piece.  For around $15 I got a small can of Minwax gel stain at Lowe’s, however they did not have all the available colors.  I wanted one of the darker stains, and the darkest they had was “Brazilian Rosewood”.  Anything was better than honey maple in my opinion.


Buffet Before

I didn’t prep the buffet at all.

Let that sink in.  No sanding, no cleaning, no buffing and polishing.  To clarify, I will tell you that the piece is a mix of materials.  Real wood base, doors and top with particle-board sides and a thin plywood back.  This was not what you would consider quality hardwood construction.

I will admit, that I didn’t read the directions…and that seemed a bit out of character for me…and I learned my lesson.  I assumed it would be like any standard wood stain, wipe it on with a brush, let it sit, then wipe it off to reveal the color.  Repeat until you get the desired darkness you want.  I brushed it on, waited about five minutes, and then tried to wipe it off.  It did not wipe off this piece, and now I had small cotton fuzzies from my rag all down the side.

Take 2

I painted the buffet with stain.  Yep, that’s as easy as it gets with a really nice finish.

The last piece of the puzzle took me another couple of weeks to solve, and it was party because I couldn’t find exactly what I wanted.  The back panel of the buffet was a piece of heavy-duty cardboard, with a faux wood finish over it (don’t you just hate fake wood) which I see myself painting over.  So I began a search for a black and white fabric, paper or gift wrap that I could decoupage over it.  I knew that I wanted what some might call a “busy” print with lots of scrolls, , maybe floral and curves and somewhat vintage.  Perhaps a paisley, or fleur-de-lis pattern, or even a floral, in black and white.

Black and White Prints

I was finally able to locate just what I was looking for at Micheal’s Craft Store in the gift wrap section. I pulled out the staples and took off the back, and using a 1 to 3 parts mixture of glue and water, I covered the fake back.  And here you have the finished product, in my office.  I think it goes nicely with the blue and the black and white ties into my color scheme and desk.


After - Buffet

Backing Detail

Nearly Benched

Progress is slow on some projects around the house, and it seems easy to get it to about 90% completed…is that last 10% that always delays the final result.  So with my painted bench I finally got around to my first upholstery project. Upholstery might be a strong work, since this was really just stapling fabric to wood.  But I like to dream big! So my first task was to trace the table and cut my 3″ foam to fit the curves.

Tracing Curves

Bench and Foam










I did skip the step of using spray adhesive, so I suppose down the road I will let you know if it starts to slide out-of-place. The I wrapped it with pre-cut batting…which was cheaper to buy a ‘crib’ size package, then the by-the-yard type.  Depending on the size you need, you may or may not be able to find other size options.  When stapling the batting to the underside of the table top, I started in the middle of the longest sides, stretched tight and stapled.  Then I did the same on the two short sides.  I placed my staples about one inch in from the corner where the skirt meets the underside of the table, so that when I attached the fabric, I could get as close to the edge as possible.  I probably stapled the batting about every 2-3 inches, and some closer together around the points on the curves.


Attaching the Batting


At the corners, I stapled each side, leaving about a 2 inch gap in the middle, then folded the middle in and tucked the corners.  You could also fold a diagonal corner, facing into the middle, but with my curves, this was the easier way.


Tucking the Corner

Then I cut my fabric to size, and followed the same steps in stapling as I did with the batting.

Fabric Attached


Then I used my fabric scissors to cut the excess fabric, as close to the edge as I could, but still leaving enough for the staples to hang-on.  The last 10% needed to complete the project, is finding a coordinating piece of trim, to cover the rough edge and the staples.  And I am considering adding a few buttons for tufting. Which might also help with the shifting, since I forgot adhesive. I’m pretty proud at my first attempt, and it is a great addition to the master bedroom.


Almost Complete!


Supplies: Staple Gun, 3″ by-the-yard foam, batting, fabric and painted coffee table.

P.S. Can you see the sneak peek of a matching dresser in the background there…stay tuned.