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Make a Mod Podge transfer centerpiece for a family gathering

Centerpiece Tutorial Family ReunionIn a momentary step away from mad prep for Unique LA, I have my latest Mod Podge Rocks Tutorial up for your viewing pleasure.

I’m on a Mod Podge Transfer Medium kick…..although I doubt I’m using it in the way the Mod Podge folks intended.

I had  a large chunk of 4×6 lumber that I inherited somewhere along the line and I thought it would be cool to make it into a centerpiece for a family gathering.DIY Wedding Centerpiece

It was very, very easy and, if ever there is a big Cheaney Family reunion at my house I am totally prepared!

Of course, the minute I finished it I thought of a lot of other variations on the idea (using tapers rather than tea lights, making it with flower pots or smaller blocks etc etc) so you may be seeing more of these as time goes byEaster Family Centerpiece Idea Cheltenham Road

What do you think?  Maybe for weddings?  anniversaries? Easter Family Centerpiece Idea Cheltenham Road

OK back to prep.  Posts to follow!  Thanks for hanging in there with me!

 

The Cheltenham Road Story?

Floggings will continue

Counted Cross Stitch by Jealous Moon on ETSY

My morale hasn’t been down but I’ve definitely felt it….flagging? I’ve been busy but factory-mode busy.

Etsy has been slow but my wholesale accounts are stocking up for spring.  It has been great (really!) but  it has had me running around re-making what I’ve already made and I’m finding myself keen to get some new stuff going. However, ideas have been few and far between.

But! The there is no time to wait around for inspiration to strike! It’s time to get going and get going I must.

I’ve been accepted to Unique LA again for the spring show.Unique LA Spring Show

Before every show Sonja (the woman who invented Unique LA) has a vendor meeting where she goes over the rules and also manages a bit of inspiration.

This year her inspiration was to think about what your story is and how your booth can tell that story.

So I’m wondering both what Cheltenham Road’s story is and how do I translate that to my booth?

Now, I think we all know “my story” is that I smack my head into things a lot…….but that’s probably not the side I want to present to the general public.

And although my booth design has been improving over the years

Cheltenham Road Unique LA Booth Spring 2013CheltenhamRoad booth display towers for Unique LA Summer Show 2012Cheltenham Road Booth Unique LA

I think the story I’ve been telling with it is “I managed to make it here in one piece and here’s my stuff!”

So, as those of you who follow me on Pinterest have probably noticed, I’ve been pinning booth design ideas like crazy (because that’s so much for fun then actually doing it!).

The goal is to create a cohesive spot that looks like a little store and tells, or at least reflects, the Cheltenham Road Style/Story.

I also need a lot of new product.

I have two weeks.

So join me won’t you!  I’m planning to post projects as I finish them (this will also force me to actually do it rather than daydream about doing it) and I’ve found that all of you have great insights into things.  So please weigh in with thoughts and ideas.  I may not be able to incorporate all of them but anything that sparks an idea will be incredibly valuable!

 

Breakfast in Bed

Breakfast in Bed Tray Tutorial by Cheltenham Road for Mod Podge RocksJust a quickie post to say that my latest tutorial is up over at Mod Podge Rocks.

In my continued quest to clean up and weed out stuff from my workroom and the garage I’m trying not to buy new things unless I know A) exactly what to do with them and B) that I will do it promptly.

But, when I saw this breakfast tray marked at just $2.0o in the thrift store (admittedly a place I probably shouldn’t be going if my goal is to not buy new things) I knew it met both criteria:Thrift Store Breakfast Tray Tutorial Cheltenham RoadA) I really wanted to try out the new(ish) Mod Podge Transfer Medium and I had a “vision!”
B) I needed a new Mod Podge Rocks project

and…bonus!

C) I wanted breakfast in bed

It all came together nicely and the transfer medium was easy to work with.Mod Podge Tray Tutorial by Cheltenham Road

So join me for breakfast won’t you (although by the time I took the picture it wasn’t breakfast time anymore and the coffee was cold……but I totally scarfed the croissant…….and the four others that came in the package  because, as you know, I’m all about moderation.)

Tutorial: Pallet Wood Display Shelf

Tutorial - Turn a Pallet into a Display Shelf by Cheltenham RoadI’ve seen something like a billion pallet wood projects on the web and I was beginning to feel a bit left out when, happily,  the most expensive saw in the world came with its own pallet!

I was eager to use it but didn’t know what to make until I was cleaning some bookshelves  and decided my accidental vintage camera collection needed a  home.

Have you ever done that?  Accidentally started a collection?  I had no idea I collected cameras until I discovered I’d bought three of them.

So, burgeoning camera collection please meet pallet wood!Pallet Wood Shelf ProjectI’m not really good with advance planning so this project kind of “evolved” as I went – please bear with me as I improv my way toward a shelf.

First off I had to take the pallet apart.  I’d seen posts on Pinterest about “how to take apart a pallet” and thought disdainfully  “really?  We need a tutorial for that?”

I should have looked at them.  Those people  are not fooling around when they put those pallets together.

Once I got it pried apart I cut the wood  pieces down to 21” lengths reserving the remainder for the shelving.

It was at this point that I had the idea that it would look cool if I had a frame around the piece so I went digging and came up with the perfect size lengths  of wood (this is the point in other people’s tutorials where I begin to think “I’m so happy for you and your endless supply of perfect materials that you just have lying around.”  I do apologize for being that person but I really do produce a lot of random scrap wood)Tutorial Display Shelf made from an old palletI cut the ends of the frame wood at 45 degree angles and set about painting.

My plan was to paint it white – to contrast with the black cameras – but I did want a little distressing.

So I stained the edges of the wood, rubbed them with wax and then painted them white because…..that’s my move!

How to distress woodChicks dig it!

Once the paint had dried a quick sanding and voila! Semi-instant vintage wood!How To Make New Wood Look Old and Chippy Tutorial Cheltenham RoadI flipped all the pieces over and using my carpenters square to keep it, well, square, I attached them all together with a couple more pieces of scrap wood (sorry!).Simple DIY Reclaimed Pallet Wood Dislpay ShelfI attached the frame using my nail gun and some glue….and then patched the two corners where the frame didn’t quite meet.  Wood spackle for the cornersThe frame isn’t structural and thing was supposed to look rustic but there is a line between “rustic” and “dude can’t measure” and I didn’t want to make it quite so obvious that I have a permanent home in the latter camp.

I laid the shelving pieces out and maked their location – using my carpenter’s square to make sure they would be straight and level.Mark Front for Shelf Placement  I drilled pilot holes  and then screwed the shelves themselves in from the back.

And that’s all she wrote.Reused Pallate Wood Project ShelfI think it shows off the camera’s nicelyDIY Pallet Display Shelf

I’ve got a little space for new cameras …..and I’ll need some because, as I learned on Sesame Street …one of these things is not like the others……Pallet Wood Display Shelf Cheltenham RoadThatDIYPartybutton_zps5b45d013Home Storeis A 2 ZWAW_BUTTONbeyond the picket fence

When Worlds Collide

In my performing life I have had plenty of Actor Nightmares where you suddenly discover you are onstage and have no idea what play you’re in or what your lines are.

Last night my acting life and my crafting life combined and I had an Actor/Crafter Nightmare.

In my dream I was at the first read through of a brand new series for Fox.  Except I had no idea what part I was playing and the page numbers on my script didn’t match the page numbers on everyone else’s scripts.  I couldn’t ask or I’d look like a total amateur fool.  But WORSE THAN THAT just next to my chair was a huge stack of candle blocks that I had made for some official Fox function and as I looked down the paper was peeling off of them.  So I spent the whole dream panicking about what role I was playing while alternatley trying to figure out if I could get the blocks home and fix them in time  without anyone noticing.

The only positive aspect of the whole affair was that the new show apparently starred John Hamm.  So at least I was about to be fired from a quality project. 

So I didn’t get a lot of sleep but did wake up raring to go (allbeit at 3AM).

I finished up some projects I’ve been working on.

A new coaster set that riffs on vintage Roller Skating Rink graphics

Vintage Roller Skate coaster Sets via Etsy

Vintage Roller Skate coaster Sets via Etsy

I don’t know if these will have wide appeal but I love the look of them.Etsy Coaster Set Vintage Roller RinkVintage Roller Skating Rink Coaster Set Cheltenham Road  Also, I’ve found that people often shop not for the graphics but for whatever city happens to be shown.  So, if any of you are from Columbus Nebraska have I got the coaster set for you!

I also made some revisions and refinings on my Detroit HOME sign.Detroit Wooden HOME sign Cheltenham Road

Vintage Detroit HOME sign Cheltenham RoadOK, I gotta take a nap.

Have a great weekend everyone.

End Table – The Next Generation

Hello again!

Thanks for all the comments on my new saw.  She needs a name though.  Maxie?  Athena (she’s kind of god-like).  Thoughts?

I’m so looking forward to not cutting my fingers off!!!!

Anyway, remember this little table makeover?  That went from this:Deco End Table Makeover BeforeTo this:Deco End Table by Cheltenham RoadWell,  as is often the case with me, after I finished it and declared myself happy I immediately thought of something else I could do with it.

I’d come across a bunch of little decorative frames in the dollar bins at Michaels so with a bit of Mod Podge, paper and paint I blinged it up a bit.Mod Podge End Table Makeover Tutorial

The latest step in its evolution is also my latest tutorial over at Mod Podge Rocks. 

It is, as you can imagine, super simple.  If i you’re interested in the details, head on over to Amy blog (or just click on the picture below).Cheltenham Road and Mod Podge Rocks End Table Makeover

Happy (almost) Presidents Day Weekend!

Once Every 100 Years

I’ve begun to think of Cheltenham Road as the Brigadoon of blogs.* It will pop up every now and again and if you’re lucky (or Gene Kelly) you’ll see it!

* (If you’re not up on your 1950s musical references, Brigadoon is a show about a magical Scottish village that, due to a curse, only appears for one day every 100 years.  There is a movie version with Gene Kelly.  In my formative, childhood years, there was only one music-playing device in our house and it was located in the living room.  My family loved musical theatre so while other kids were blasting, I don’t know, AC-DC, I was becoming fully conversant in The Music Man, The King and I, Camelot and an odd one called Tenderloin about prostitutes in turn-of-the-century San Francisco.  I and my sisters happily sang along even though we really didn’t understand what the lyric “hitting the streets again” implied till much later). soundtrack-brigadoon

 Of course, Brigadooning (it’s a word!) the blog isn’t my goal at all but I’ve been waylaid by both my own issues and computer issues.

 On the “I did it to myself” front I thought Jan/Feb would be slow so I totally tore apart the garage…you know, where I do all my work.  But I was wrong and it has been crazy busy with store orders and the garage has remained in the “worse before it gets better” phase for longer than I anticipated and I CANT FIND ANYTHING!!!!

 But, on the plus side, I also bought the world’s most expensive table saw.Saw Stop Table Saw

The Saw Stop has really astounding technology that will stop the blade if it senses, perhaps, your finger is about to be cut off.  Here’s a demo if you’re intrigued – it really is amazing.

It does cost a lot but I decided that, since I work by myself most of the time and am dealing with my own, um, uncoordinatedeness (it’s a word!) in combination with the potential of Zen: Cat Assassin popping up it was a very good investment.  As a bonus it would also relieve my father’s concerns about me ending up lying dead on the driveway.  So Win-Win.  But it has taken me a week to put it together.

its a pallet

image from Heritage Pallets.com

 Bonus!  It came on a pallet so I can make some pallety sort of thing……someday….as soon as I make the saw work……

 On the “not my fault” side my computer is toast. 

Not totally toast yet, more like really warm bread.  But, bottom line it ain’t gonna recover and I have to get a new one.  So, in the meantime it takes about 5 minutes to save a document or make a change and my internet connection is excitingly random.  The computer also refuses to “live in the moment” and keeps reverting to thinking it is August of 1994 which means it can’t connect with websites because, and this is the actual text from the Failure Screen, they “exist in the future.”  Which is kind of cool in a time-travel sort of way but also really annoying. 

So that’s me.  Look for a post tomorrow (internet connection willing) about my latest mod-podge-rocks project which will look familiar to you regular readers….familiar yet more mod-podgy.

Thanks for your patience.

I am not being compensated by Saw Stop for this post.  However, I’m REALLY open to the idea.

Garage Organization: Use Mason Jars for Leftover Paint (with Free Printable Label)

Use Mason Jars to Store Leftover Paint Cheltenham RoadThe great garage clean up continues (and continues and continues).

So journey with me, won’t you, to the dank recesses of the Blair Witch Room and a lot of leftover paint

(For readers only recently joining us my house is a 1940s fixer-upper.  We’re not quite sure what the original owner was up to but built off the back of the garage is a mysterious room that, due to its dark, cobwebby, dirty and generally creepy state of decrepitude was immediately dubbed The Blair Witch Room when I first toured the house).

I think most homeowners end up with a stash of random paint cans.  But I am no average home owner.  No, I seem to collect paint like other people collect baseball cards.  Some of it is for my house-of-many-colors and a lot of it is/was for my business.

Bottom line – I have a lot of paint.Store Leftover Paint in Mason Jars

And it’s taking up a lot of disorganized, messy room.

I don’t want to get rid of all of it but I do want to get it reduced, organized and accessible.

Mason Jars seemed like the perfect solution (I’ve seen similar projects while cruising the web).  They seal tightly.  You can see what is in them.  They cost less per jar than the paint cans sold at Home Depot.  So I picked up a couple of different sizes and got to work.Mason Jar Paint Storage ProjectI don’t know if this qualifies as a “tutorial” since the instructions would basically be “pour stuff from one container into another” but I do have some tips based on my expert experience.  Here is how I did it:

  •  Step 1: Gather a lot of paint stirrers
  • Step 2: To save yourself some stirring time shake the can really well before you open it.
  • Step 3: Check to make sure the can is thoroughly sealed shut before you shake it.
  • Step 4: Clean up the mess and change your clothes.
  • Step 5: Reverse Steps 2 and 3 and proceed.

You will, actually, need a fair number of paint stirrers.  If your paint has been sitting around it will have separated and you want to thoroughly mix it before you transfer it to the mason jars.

So, after a lot of shaking, stirring and pouring I went from this:Store Leftover Paint in Mason JarsTo This:Mason Jar Project - Store Old PaintMuch better.  Kinda pretty actually.  Makes the Blair Witch room seem a little less witchy.Mason Jars for Paint StorageAt first I just intended to note color etc on the top of the jars but I decided to kick it up a notch by making some labels that I could fill out to make everything all neat and orderly.Mason Jar Paint Label Free PrintableI just printed mine onto a sheet of 8.5×11″ label paper but I designed them (or tried to) to fit on Avery Round Labels (Avery Number 22830).  I don’t have any of the Avery labels on hand but I used the official Avery template so it should work if you’re so inclinedMason Jar Labels for Paint Storage by Cheltenham RoadClick below to download the full sized graphics

Mason Jar Paint Labels By Cheltenham Road

Free Printable Mason Jar Labels for Paint Storage by Cheltenham RoadAnd now I’m onto the next task – creating a useable, enclosed spray booth.

As Lovely As My Sisters

Umm…..not my best January.  First I get food poisoning and go down for the count and then my computer gets….well,….ebola I believe.

It went into the shop last Tuesday.  I got it back on Saturday and……..not so much better really.  I seem to have a somewhat whimsical connection to the internet.   Sometimes I do.  Sometimes I don’t.  Sometimes I do and don’t almost at the same time (and always right in the middle of whatever I’m doing.)

It’s awesome!

So I’ve been spending my time continuing to clean and organize the garage.  A job I thought would take a couple of days and is stretching into weeks.  But I’m determined to get it done and get it done right.

Fortunately, my lovely sisters have not dropped the internet ball (partially because they’ve been snowed in) and have been searching high and low for cool ideas.

Mamie Jane  (of mamiejane’s blogspot) saw a cutting board/ipad holder in the Pottery Barn catalog and made her own using a scrabble tile holder and a child’s block (and a cutting board of course).  And saved herself about $40Pottery Barn Inspired Ipad Holder by mamiejanes And, OK, I couldn’t love these bookends more.  I so wish I had an eye that could put things together like this. Found Object Book Ends(The bookends themselves seem to have sold but you can find plenty of veeeery cool things at their creator’s new Etsy shop )

And check out this very clever and beautifully simple shelf organizer, again via Etsy (they have tons of other creative and useful listings as well)Wall Hanging Organizer by Moonlitterra

And how genius is it to simply turn a tool box on it’s side and attach it to the wall (via Design Sponge)! Wall Organizer via Design Sponge

And finally, Paula knows about my big garage clean out/makeover so she found this truly inspiring project from Shanty 2 Chic.Garage Lumber Organizer

Thank you sisters!

OK, my computer goes back to the repair shop this week.  Keep your fingers crossed!

$10 Table 1 Hour Makeover

$10 Table 1 Hour Makeover

As I think I mentioned I’m cleaning out the garage (again!).Garage disaster

My workshop is a post -Christmas disaster and I need to be honest about what my business is now and how I should use my space.  I have grand plans!  Let’s see if I can do it.

My vow was to truly get rid of things.  I was going to be brutal!

It had actually been a bit of a struggle.  I have joked about “horders” before but, honestly, I feel like I kind of understand it the syndrome.

Each scrap of wood or random bit of ephemera I’ve gathered could be used for something……someday.  And I can never escape the fear that  pretty much the minute I pitch or donate it “someday” will come and I will wish I had it.

But I had to do it.  I’ve given away furniture that I’m just never going to work on to my friend Nicki who I know will do some amazing transformations.  I weeded out scrap wood and bits of other stuff.

My rule was that if I don’t know exactly what I want it for/want to do with it then it has to go.

I did keep a few, small, pieces of furniture because even though I really don’t have an outlet for selling it I love working on furniture (it’s how this whole journey began) and I just can’t give it up.

This little end table was a perfect example.Deco End Table Makeover Before

I picked it up for $10 at a garage sale.  The finish was toast but he lines and details were really nice.

I had a simple vision for it – just a nice, clean makeover to give it a second life.

But time is tight (those coasters aren’t going to make themselves!) so I gave myself a time limit.

One hour.

I didn’t know if that was going to be really possible but it was worth a shot.

My orbital sander made quick work of the majorly decayed finish.  And a sanding sponge worked great for getting into the nooks of those fluted edges.Use a Sanding Sponge for Detail SandingSo, 15 minutes later I had a nicely sanded piece ready for priming.Deco Side Table Sanded and ready for PaintSpray paint was the way to go on this.  It’s fast to dry and perfect for small pieces (I use Rustoleum’s American Accents mostly).

After years of missing spots when I paint I’ve gotten into the habit of flipping the furniture upside down for the initial coat of paint that way I know I’ve hit everywhere.Primed for paintingAfter the primer had dried for about 20 minutes I gave a very (VERY) light sanding.  And then top-coated with Heirloom White.  Two quick coats applied in close succession did the job nicely.

After another 20 minutes of drying I attached a black knob and I was done!DIY Deco End Table MakeoverTruth in Advertising:  While the sanding, priming, painting took an hour I still had to let the paint cure overnight before I put things down on it for these final photos.Deco End Table by Cheltenham Road

And I didn’t apply a top coat of polycrylic or wax as I’ve found the spray paint is plenty durable on it’s own.Thrift Store End Table Makeover by Cheltenham RoadBut, of course, now that it’s done and photographed I have had a brainstorm about something else I want to do with that knob area.

I think it will take a lot less than an hour……….

 

 

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