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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!

$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……….



OK, lets not do that again

I’ve been itching to work on some furniture for months now but lacked:

  • A-the furniture
  • B- a venue in which to sell it.

Both of my problems were solved when

  • A  my very good friend Aimee brought me this
  • B – Thanks to my friend Nicki I was accepted into the Little French Market where I can sell both furniture and my coasters but I don’t have to rent a truck to get it there.

Aimee’s table was in good shape structurally but the finish was pretty well shot.

And I had a vision!


OK, I agree – as unique visions go me using text is not up there with sliced bread, the wheel and fire on the new idea front.…..but I like it!

So first up – a good cleaning, sanding and priming.

For the text I wanted to use my Cameo rather than the blender pen of the past (see!  Radically new!).  So I painted the apron of the table black and then distressed it a bit and taped off a straight line to keep my text even.

And then the trouble began.

Me and the Cameo just don’t get along.  For some reason it won’t actually connect with my computer so I have to do all these work-arounds.  And –when I do get it going it never quite does what I thought I’d told it to do.

I realize you could blame me for that but I prefer to blame the inanimate, non-sentient piece of equipment.   Thanks for your input though.

So, after numerous tries, fails and tries agains I got it to print out my quote:

Except that font wasn’t a great choice.  All those tiny, thin connecting lines don’t quite connect and I had to….. Pick. Out. Each.   Delicate.  Letter.  One.  At. A. Time.

But, once they were on I gave the whole thing a quick top coat of Antique White, peeled away the vinyl letters, did a little distressing and waxing and BOOM!

Another texty table from Cheltenham Road

Aaand I just noticed two things.

I forgot to put the little metal feet back on it – easy fix.

And I missed the period at the end of the quote so now, rather than looking like a quote from Emerson it looks like I’m informing someone named Emerson of the news about friends and houses.


I see a sharpie in my future.

If any of you are local please come visit me and my chatty furniture at the Little French Market

Saturday & Sunday November 17th and 18th
19130 Ventura Blvd, Tarzana, CA
8AM -3PM

Displaying my Wares – Easy Table Makeover

I’ve been eager to get to work on some new furniture projects but have been a little stuck.  Since I lost my spot at the Rose Bowl I don’t really have an outlet for my furniture.

However, my coasters, trays, signs etc are sold locally in a fantastic store called CoOP 28 run by the terrific Marci.

Recently Marci and I were talking about display and she offered me a prime spot for my trays and suggested I could come up with a little table for them.  Perfect!  I got right to work.

I’d inherited a sofa table quite a while ago…well, I had inherited thelegs the top had decamped at some point (how does that happen?).  In a burst of creativity I’d cut a new top for it mimicking the curve of the apron…..

…….and then stuck it in the back of the garage and forgot about it.

I dragged it out and cleaned it up and gave it a quick top coat with some leftover ceiling paint (I needed flat paint for what I had in mind).

I knew I wanted a graphic on top but I didn’t want anything too busy or distracting.

Blender Pen to the Rescue!

I’ve used a blender pen many times before (check out the link for more detailed instructions) but here is quick recap of blender pen technique using images from another table:

After applying my text I sanded the legs for a light distressing and went over it all with a coat of paste wax

The paste wax adds some depth and a nice shine.

I, once again used my favorite Shakespeare Sonnet and here we gographic transfer tutorial for table

Text on table tutorialAnd I think it will look OK with some trays on it.  It’s not too distracting but it’s not just a boring white table either

Now I’m off to bring to the store.

Hope everyone had a happy and safe 4th of July!

For the Love of Books!

Hope everyone had a good weekend!

It was gloriously rainy and cold in Los Angeles so I was forced to be inside getting my act together.

I failed.  My act is very, very not-together.  Ah well

But, it was still a nice weekend!

And I woke up this morning to see that Courtney over at A Diamond in the Stuff had chosen to feature my Shakespeare Table – which was a great way to start off a week.

Actually, I’ve been on quite a text-on-furniture kick of late and wanted to share another table I made recently.

You may recall I picked up this little guy about a week ago.  I’m not quite sure what the original owner’s plan was there with the blue top and the one blue leg nor was I quite sure what I wanted to do with it. But the little shelf there on the bottom got me to thinking about my family’s deep and sincere love of books.

My grandfather’s basement had a book collection so large that there was actually a card catalog!  My Uncle Chuck is a terrific author of everything from mysteries to a wonderful book on the History of Advertising.

And, throughout my childhood the Sunday routine was to go to church, go to brunch and then go to a bookstore wherein each member of the family would go off in different directions and bury themselves in books.  The Hardy Boys were my literature of choice for quite a while and there was nothing better than a new adventure.

I still love books and spend huge hunks of time happily wandering the ever-scarcer book stores in the area.  So when The Muse gave me the following quote I knew it was destined for my little table:

How perfect is that!? (I didn’t put my Hardy Boys on there but I do have some vintage Tom Swift books that make me smile every time I see them).

I’m pleased with how it came out but I think the real star of the show is the detailed edges of the table – beautiful!

OK, I’m off to make more stuff!

A Rose By Any Other……


I just have time for a quick post as I’m scrambling to get everything together and ready for tomorrow’s Rose Bowl.

I seem to be on a text kick.  Subway Art, letters etc etc.

I either know exactly what I want to do with a piece of furniture or I have no clue what to do and it has to sit in my garage for a while before inspiration strikes.

When I saw this woebegone piece in the thrift store I knew exactly what I wanted to do with it.It was in bad shape.  Wobbly legs, and ton’s of splits along the rim but I really liked the shape of the top and the curve of the legs.

So, after some serious patching and priming I got to work with my blender pen method and one of my favorite Shakespeare Sonnets and headed for the romantic side of furniture.

OK, off to sand things, staple things and general finish all the things that really should have been finished two days ago.  Wish me luck! (and, of course, if you’re local please come on by the Rose Bowl tomorrow.  It should be a beautiful day!)

Rose Bowl Ramp Up!

It’s the big Rose Bowl run up.  One piece of furniture down……several to go……..

When I first saw this little dresser I thought (and you may remember) that I’d put chalkboard paint on the front and make it for a kids room.

However, my sister Phebe wisely weighed in on that idea.

You see Phebe marches to a different drummer than I do.

Phebe’s  drummer is way cool and waaaay together.  Her drummer leads her to have alphabetized spices and to never be late.  My drummer…..probably got fired from the band for missing rehearsal.

Anyway, Phebe pointed out that as a mom of three she wouldn’t have been thrilled to find chalk dust all over her children’s clean clothes.

I really couldn’t argue with her reasoning and so a new idea was born.

Or rather a recent idea was expanded.

I seem to have a thing lately for old postcards.  So after some mad downloading from the Graphics Fairy and a few other sources I came up with this.

Once again, here is the before with it’s charming shelf liner top

And here we go.

Perhaps a little on the busy side but I’m pleased.

OK – back to work!

End Table Nirvana Continues To Pay Off!

So we’ll continue our furniture world tour with a little French end table I worked on for the Rose Bowl.

This was another find from the End Table Nirvana (yes, I’m still working my way through that amazing furniture haul!).

She had tossed this little guy in at the last minute for free “because it’s broken.”

But all that was broken was that the top wasn’t fully attached and the lower shelf had split along a seam.  The finish was looking a little sad too.  But one can never argue with free!

So, as usual, it was time for sanding, glue, bondo and clamps (always clamps!)

After some drying time it got another good sanding, a cleaning with TSP and quick coat of flat white paint (actually ceiling paint left over from my dining room).

The next step was to distress it a little but I was in a bit of a bad mood and got a kinda carried away.  The final result was not as much “distressed” as it was “traumatized” but I didn’t have time to go back in and repaint.

I decided it needed a little help from the Graphics Fairy and did a little mixing and matching with these labels that she so generously provides.

Once I got them (re)arranged and reversed I went to town with my Blender Pen method.

A nice coating of wax and I was all done and it was time for pictures.

I feel that lemons should always be stored on the lower shelf of a table in the hallway near the bathroom where the light is better.  Don’t you?  It’s a great spot for your vintage camera collection too.  Just a little FYI from me to you.

I’m happy to report that this one sold at the Rose Bowl!  And considering it was free and the paint was leftover – the overhead on this one was just printer ink, blender pen, a knob and time!  Yay!

Please check out these great link parties

“This is the cool place!”

This is the cool place!

A woman exclaimed that as she approached my booth yesterday at the Rose Bowl.  AND she actually proceeded to buy something.

I’ve discovered that exclamations of “OH MY GOD I LOVE THIS!!!!” do not necessarily lead to purchases.  Last year a woman stopped dead in her tracks, and shouted (like at the top of her lungs) “I’VE GOT TO HAVE THAT!!!!” when looking at one my clocks.  Then there was a brief pause while I, and pretty much everyone nearby, stopped and waited.  Aaaand then she walked on.

Now I realize that I don’t actually purchase everything I think is cool.  But I’m kind of a quiet person by nature so if something grabbed me so much  that I reacted to it like I was having a heart attack and it was a nitroglycerin tablet I’d probably fork over the money.  But that’s just me.

Anyway, the weather was beyond beautiful yesterday (sorry east coasters) –  70s, sunny with a light breeze.  Sales were good, although my “oh this is so cool/but I’m not buying it” rate was better.  I think people were suffering with that post-Christmas “good lord what did I do!?” hangover.

The big eye catcher was my new dresser that I hinted at on Saturday.

I’d had this dresser sitting around and was waiting for inspiration to strike. And it struck big time when I saw this blog post from the very talented Lauren and Nick of  Lindaure Designs (the link is for their excellent tutorial).

Isn’t  that beyond cool?!  The minute I saw it I couldn’t wait to get started.

Mine’s a little different – different city, different layout but I was pleased with the final result.

(and I just realized when I posted this that I not only stole their dresser idea I even stole the fan they put on top of it!  Shall we just chalk the whole thing up to “sincerest form of flattery” and move on?  I think we shall.  Oops!)

The dresser got the most “oh that’s cool/wander away” action but I kind of expected that.  It’s a very specific person who’s going to want to own it so it’s OK.

I did manage to get away from the booth to hang out for a bit with my friend Nicki of Nicki Huard Creations.  Her booth was busier than mine.  Crazy busy.  Too busy…..  I think I like her less now….

However, despite liking her less, I have to show you these nifty teapot lamps she makes.

And she has promised to teach me how she does her stenciling (she has secrets!) because look at these boxes!

Look at how clean those lines are!  You may be thinking “uhhh, David, it’s a stencil.”  But this is rough wood so to get that kind of sharpness takes some skills and I want to acquire them!

Today I started to tackle the garage as phase one of my war on disorganization!  If you don’ t hear from me again I probably dropped something on myself.

Linking up here:

Fresh Start Monday

It’s Fresh Start Monday!

Well, I’ve dubbed it that after having a kind of haphazard weekend wherein I sorta got things done, kinda got organized, and almost ate well (I say that because I  managed to eat an entire pie….in one sitting…..I have a pie problem…..).

So, welcome to Fresh Start Monday!

The house is clean and my workspace is organized.  Well, lets be honest – organized-ish – meaning it looks organized but several things just got moved to another room and stuffed in a closet… which will probably lead to a blog post titled “Tragic Tuesday!” wherein  I recount my trip to the emergency room after having heavy things fall on my head when I opened a certain closet door.

Today is all about production line.  Make a 50 coasters.  Cut out three  HOME signs. Paint the ceiling.  Mail out orders.  Cut wood for chalkboard bunting.  Lather.  Rinse.  Repeat.

Since photos of my assembly line arent particularly arresting I thought I’d share a before and after I did on a little dresser I happened across a while ago.

Here is the (almost) before.  I seem to have a hard time remembering to take pictures as I go along.  So I guess this would be mid-before- meaning I had taken the drawers out, sanded and primed it grey (it was handy).

Honestly, after priming it I wasn’t sure what I wanted to do.

I finally settled on a two-tone color scheme and added a little detail to the front and some white knobs.

OK back to the assembly line!

Hope everyone else has or had a great Monday!


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