Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Dancing Baby Scale says ...

mmmm ... ruby reds!

Today while putting away groceries I realized that I often ask myself
'what does the dancing baby want to say now'?
I find something goofy to put up there and just that little
change brightens the room ever so slightly.
So every once in a while I'm going to throw down a random
Dancing Baby Scale Says post ...
because it's whimsical, it's fun, it's goofy and because I can.

mmmhhhh ... slightly similar ;)

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Dining Table Completed

I'm soooo happy with how it turned out!

Slightly dusty from removing paint tarps in the room, but you can still see the nice finish.

Here's the shortened version of the project rundown:
A) I finally decide how I want to refinish the table ... paint on the base, stain on the top
B) Sand, sand, sand
C) Change of plans ... hey why not just stain the whole thing?
D) Begin stripping the base ... oh this is why ... stupid round, detailed legs!
E) Hand sand, hand sand, hand sand stupid legs ( I'm just playing.  I think the legs are the best part of the table ) 
F) Time to stain in Ebony
G) Ick, I don't like the look of ebony ... recoat 3x's to get a darker result ... still a no go
H) Switch to Classic Black polyshade ... 3 coats ... ooh pretty
I) Spar varnish on the table top for a more durable finish
J) Too much lint, sand & re-apply spar
K) Air bubbles, sand & re-apply spar
L) Brush streaks, sand & re-apply spar
M) Air bubbles, sand & re-apply spar
N) I'll try a can of spray spar ... bad, bad evil spray varnish!
O) Sand & re-apply spar, too much lint and air bubbles
P) WHAT THE ...!!! 
Q) Used up the entire quart of spar, now what?
R) Oh yeahhhhhh, we still have Liquid Plastic
S) Apply liquid plastic ... 10+ years of a sedentary lifestyle makes it not want to play nicely
T) Sand & re-apply thinned liquid plastic ... still wavey but better
U) Very nice weather outside, gotta take advantage of it and sand down the waviness
V) C'mon let this be the last application ... 

After that last application I tip-toed up the steps and when Tim asked me how it 
turned out, I shushed him ... if we don't talk about it, we don't jinx it.

The room is still in progress but the table and chairs are done and in place!

A lot of things look great far away, but check out that close up ... smoooooth!

It's been a long haul ... right around 2 months of work.
I've woken up with tendonitis in my elbows many mornings 
from all of the sanding.
Chucked paint brushes across the room in total frustration.
Walked away in tears feeling inept.


I can point out each flaw that is on here ... but they are MY flaws.
There are only a couple and they aren't there from lack of trying or lack of interest ... 
they are there because that's just how it goes.
Perfect finishes come from companies that are equipped
with lint/dust free rooms, professional sprayers and specially mixed finishes.
This table isn't perfect and it wasn't refinished by a master craftsman ...
but when I look at that table I feel like one ; ) 

The DIY Show Off

Monday, January 16, 2012

In Progress:

You KNOW that you are a hard person to please when your own work isn't good enough for yourself!!
I took advantage of the warm weather last week and sanded down the wavy top coat
on the table and applied a 'final' coat of finish this past Saturday.  
It turned out stunning!  The shine is incredible and the finish is so silky smooth ... I smile each time that I look at it because I'm so proud that

There are a few spots where lint/dust settled into the wet finish and I find my eyes wandering to those
spots and wondering if I should try again.
That's when the argument starts in my head ... and it isn't pretty ...
there's a lot of name calling
going on in there!
I really need to learn to be satisfied with my best effort instead of hold out for perfection.


Anyway ... since all of my projects seem to take forever to get done I thought I would
start to post some progress reports.
So besides the table, here is what else I've been working on:

Battening up the dining room walls.
We were using it as a computer room ( & the dogs were using is as their bedroom.)
It was boring, ugly and didn't have any style.

Check out how unlevel the doorway was ... there was a 1+ inch difference from one corner to the other!

Primed and ready

Just starting on this project ... removing
the veneer from the drawer fronts, will glue the veneer on the doors, add/replace
the missing relief detail on the top drawer and then paint.  
It will be perfect in the newly finished dining room!

$15 thrift store buffet


Reusable, washable canvas grocery bags with a scene from
my favorite Sesame Street Short: 

I really thought this was going to be a quick project ... but everything about
it is very time consuming.
The one pictured below is one of the first ones that I completed.  I've given
7 bags so far as 'thank you' and 'I love you' gifts ... I have 
about 7 more to go to complete my thank-you list and then I can
move on to making some for our household  ; )

I'm linking up with:
Metamorphosis Monday

Friday, January 6, 2012

Refinishing the table part 4

Oooh shiny!

Fun, now I can watch myself as I eat!
I'm mostly happy with how it came out, but I still need to fix it.
I tried the tip that I got from my dad about applying the varnish with a cheese cloth
dampened with mineral spirits but it didn't work out.  
In fact the cheese cloth left more lint than anything I had used up to that point so I'm thinking that I didn't hear the tip correctly because I can't image any
 woodworking magazine telling peoples to try that technique.

 While waiting for that lint-loaded-layer to dry I had a DOH! moment ... 
I remembered that we have a gallon of Carver Tripp Liquid Plastic stashed away.
It's the polyurethane that we used on our wood floors when we installed over 11 years ago.
 DOH! why didn't I remember that right away!?

In my haste to complete this project I applied the poly full strength.
I'm guessing the 10+ years has effected the viscosity because while it stirred up well in the can it
didn't level once applied.  You can see what I mean by looking at the hand/reflection photo above, the camera lens looks wavy because the poly didn't level.

Not the best of pictures but I like how the shine reflects and mirrors so nicely.

I let that layer dry and I did one more.  This time though I wrapped a stain pad inside a piece of pantyhose ... figuring that the pad 
would hold the poly while the pantyhose wouldn't hold lint.
I thinned the poly at a ratio of 1:1 with mineral spirits 
and the finish turned out great.
I would like to say the project is completed but the waviness from the first Liquid Plastic
layer bothers me.  I would rather use an electric sander 
to level out the waves but don't want to
subject our house to that amount of dust so I will put that part off 
until spring so I can work outside.

By the way, check out the legs ... aren't they lovely?  I top coated the entire base with Minwax 
Polycrylic and the finish is fantastic.  
I didn't use that on the table top because I wanted something more durable but
it's perfect for the base.

I'll do a post showing the table assembled back together and upstairs once I have that done.
First I have to paint and change the setup in the dining room ... we've been using it
as a computer room but that's going to change now that we have a
shiny pretty table.

This is a Before shot, now scroll back up to the After ; )