Goodwill Dresser Video Tutorial - Part 1

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I am still as in love with my Goodwill Dresser as the day I painted it. Above any other piece, this is the one I get the most questions about, so I decided to divulge my secret on how I created it using Annie Sloan Chalk Paint® in Old White. Get your painting clothes on, roll up your sleeves and get ready to dive in to create your own heavily distressed beauty.

This tutorial will be broken up into three parts and will show you how to create a very heavily distressed piece just like my Goodwil Dresser. Think heavy brush strokes, lots of distressing with sandpaper and lots of dark wax. 

In part one, I show you how to prep and paint the piece and hardware. Make sure you check out the description on YouTube for links to the products I used in this tutorial.



Part two is in the works and should be up on the blog next week. Check back to learn how to distress and clear wax your piece, or you can subscribe to my YouTube channel and you will be able to view part two as soon as it goes live. Happy painting!

DIY Distressed Sliding Barn Door

So sliding barn doors are everywhere these days. It used to be the case that if you wanted one you had to shell out some serious bucks. Even if you opted to make your own door, you still had to drop a lot of money on the hardware. Not anymore, there are actually a lot of affordable options for sliding hardware now and a lot of big box places even carry them in store. Lucky for me, this helped me get this idea off my Pinterest board and into our master!

sliding barn door

I am blessed to have an ensuite bathroom in our master, and it is a decent size but it is fairly narrow. The door opened into the bathroom right up against the shower which made it very crowded. It was also difficult to keep the door open to keep an ear out for my kids anytime I was in the shower. And the door would always shut while I was trying to get ready at the sink. I first saw a project like this on I Hate my Bath on HGTV a couple of years ago. I knew it would clear up a lot of these problems and make our narrow bathroom seem much larger. After enough begging, my husband finally gave in and helped me build the door.

To build the door, my husband bought 1 in. x 6 in. x 8 ft. common board from Home Depot. A good thing to know is that the actual measurements of these boards is .75 in. x 5.5 in. for when you are measuring out how large you want your door. Ours is 77" x 38" or seven boards wide. My husband is a "figure it out as you go man." I showed him some images of what I wanted and he went to work. For those of you who need a little more help than that these plans from Brandi Sawyer at Nest of Bliss will help you build a door that looks just like ours.

I wanted the door to look old and distressed like a real barn door, so we took a hammer to it and roughed it up. My husband took the hand saw and made some cool marks with that as well. Don't think too much about it if you want to do the same thing. Be random and don't be afraid.

To achieve that aged wood look I mixed my own stain. I used Minwax Wood Stain in Classic Gray and Special Walnut. I used a 5:1 ratio to mix them respectively. If you want an aged look you need a lot of the gray. Mix your stain in a separate cup. Just add a small amount of Special Walnut at a time and test out the color on scrap board. The color darkens the more you let it set on the wood, so play around and find the perfect shade before you commit to staining the whole door. I didn't use a pre-stain to treat the door. When you are going for an aged wood look, I find it better that the finish is uneven. It makes it look more natural.
staining a sliding door

If you are not into building your own door, and you have some money to drop on a project like this. Check out some of these built, stained and ready to hang doors from Amazon.
Dogberry Collections Mod-Z Barn Door - $722

Dogberry Collections Country Vintage Door - $623
Dogberry Collections Modern Slab Door - $796

We bought the TCBunny Sliding Door Hardware Closet Set Antique Style in black from Amazon for under $100. We found the instructions that came with the door are not that helpful. My husband decided to screw a 2 in. x 4 in. board into the wall at each stud. I painted it the color of the wall before we screwed it in. Then my husband hung the sliding door hardware on there. It is very secure and could hold a really heavy door. 
amazon sliding door hardware

I got my rustic looking pull from Menard's for under $5, but here is an option you could order right from Amazon that is very similar.


distressed barn door


distressed barn door

I am so happy with my door. It cleared up the space issue in my bathroom, and it adds a lot of character to our pretty basic bedroom. Can you think of a room that could benefit from a sliding door in your house?

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Creating Custom Plank Wood Wall Art for Your Home

Never underestimate the power of scraps. I was able to create the most awesome custom wood wall art for my nursery for super cheap. It was time consuming but easy. You don't need to be handy or crafty to tackle this project.

Here is what you will need:

Wood planks (I used scraps I had from a previous project)
Some tools (saw or circular saw, hammer and nails or drill and screws)
Sand paper (I used my orbital sander)
Wood stain
Natural bristle brush
Scrap cloth
Acrylic or other decorative paint
Small detail paint brush
Computer and Printer
Pencil
Pencil Sharpener
Hooks and picture wire (if you plan on hanging your piece)  



So, I enlisted my hubby to assist in the assembling of my board. He took the scraps from above and cut them in half with his circular saw. He trimmed up the edges so they would all be around them same length, but I wanted it to look pretty rustic so the edges don't line up perfectly. To attach the planks together he used three thin scraps on the back and hammered them into each plank. You could also use screws and a drill. Just make sure your screws or nails are short enough that they aren't going to pop through the front of your board.

Once it was assembled, my next step was to sand. Again, I was going for a rustic look so I lightly sanded with a medium grit sandpaper in 150. I wanted to keep all the dings, cuts and glue on the sides (remember I am using scrap wood) to give it some character. I used my Dewalt orbital sander that you have heard me rave about before, but you can also use a little elbow grease and a plain piece of sandpaper. If you are a DIY maven like me, it is worth the $50 to invest in this sander. It makes projects so much easier. After sanding, make sure to wipe it down with a cloth to remove all the dust before staining.

This was my first time working with stain, and it was a lot less intimidating than I thought it would be. I watched a couple of YouTube videos from Minwax and jumped right in. For my first coat, I used Minwax Interior Wood Stain in Special Walnut. I simply followed the directions on the can by applying it with a natural bristle brush designed for applying stain, let it set for about 5 minutes and then wiped it down with a cloth to remove the excess stain. Here is what it looked like once I was finished. 

After, I let this dry for six hours, I decided to do a second coat with Minwax Interior Stain in Weathered Oak to tone down the walnut color and give it a more aged, barn wood look. I applied this stain the same way as above but let it set for 20 minutes before I wiped it down with my cloth. I know you can't see a huge difference in these pics since they were taken in a shop room with no windows, but trust me the effect I achieved is worth this second step.

Since this will be hanging on a wall inside, I decided not to varnish it. Again, going for rustic here. I am applying a verse to my board for my gender neutral nursery I have been working on, but you could literally put anything on here you want from a phrase to an image. Use your computer to create your art or sketch it out yourself. I just created mine in Pages on my Mac using one of my favorite fonts, American Typewriter. 

Once you have your image all set flip it over and rub pencil over the area you will be tracing. Don't be shy. Really slap that lead on there.


Next, place it back on your board with some tape and trace the outline. Again, use a heavy hand.


Look at this magic. Your image should now be visible on your board. 


Now, you can fill it in anyway you want. I used a can of my Americana Decor® Chalky Finish Paint in Lace and Serene because I had it on hand, but you could any type of craft paint that works on wood.

I just love the finished product. I will be hanging this on the wall in my nursery, so I plan on attaching some hooks and picture wire to the back that I picked up at Hobby Lobby. But I think it looks great propped up on a dresser or shelf as well. Here is what I used on the back of mine.
Ook D Ring
Ook Hanging Wire (50lb. support)

I can't believe how inexpensive it was to create this custom wall art for my nursery. I had most of the items on hand, and the only thing I spent any real money on was the stain. Overall, I think I spent around $15 for my supplies. Stay tuned to see a pic of this project in its true home when I give you a tour of my nursery next week.

Disclaimer: This post contains affiliates links. I may receive a small commission from products you purchase after clicking on its associated link.

The Goods on Mother Earth Paints

I recently shared my Girly Girl Dresser makeover for my daughter's room, and I owe you a review of the paint I used, Mother Earth Paints. The owner, Robin, contacted me and asked if I would be interested in trying out her paints and offering my honest opinion on them. Here is the Pretty Distressed low down on Mother Earth Paints.

Mother Earth Paints is based in Kansas City and was created by a former vintage store owner and avid furniture painter who had used her fair share of chalk enhanced/furniture paint. Her dream was to take her favorite properties from each paint she had come across and put them into one "does it all" paint.
pink and white dresser

This water-based, low VOC paint has a sweet smell that is not irritating at all, so you can paint in your home without a problem. I had to do three coats of each color to get the coverage I wanted. Normally, I like to only have to do two coats, but I am still saving time by not having to prime or sand the piece. I also think coverage will depend on what your are painting and your purpose, so one or two coats could work for some. I was impressed by how smooth the paint went on and how little brush strokes I saw. This paint would be perfect for those who are interested in getting a smoother, more polished finish versus a rustic thick look. 

I selected Blush and Vintage for my paint colors. The Blush color ended up drying a little brighter and less pastel than I expected, but I am still happy with the colors. The Vintage color is an off white but not too creamy. It mixes perfectly with a pure white like you see on the bead board in my daughter's room.

Distressing was also a breeze. Mother Earth can be distressed with a wet sponge or sandpaper. I typically work with sandpaper, so I did the same on this piece. This paint is perfect for creating shabby chic pieces, and you only need a light hand to distress.
distressed white pink dresser

To finish off the piece, I used Mother Earth's All Natural Beeswax finish. This product had the biggest difference from other furniture wax I have used. It is made with three simple ingredients: beeswax, olive oil and carnauba wax. It has absolutely no chemical smell at all. The other waxes I have used are so stinky, I use a respirator mask and latex gloves to protect myself. I also found it was easier to get even coverage, and I used way less of this product, too. It creates a really natural looking finish, but I still feel like my paint is well protected.
natural beeswax furniture finish

Robin was kind enough to send me some brushes to try out as well. Both of the brushes are made with 100% natural bristles. They worked perfectly with the paint, and I enjoyed using the flat one for the wax application in tandem with a clean, soft cloth. They are pretty reasonably priced compared to competitor brushes. I have some brushes that cost $60, and these are right up there with them in quality.
affordable chalk paint brush

Mother Earth Paints are sold at independent retailers across the country. You can find your closest retailer by visiting their Retailers section on their Site. If you don't have a retailer near you, Studio 1404 in Kansas City sells the products online. The Mother Earth Paints Site is under going some renovations right now, but should be offering online sales soon. Here is a list of the paint line's offerings and their Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price (prices will vary from vendor to vendor): 

Paint Sample jars - 4 oz      $ 8.95
Paint Quart - 32 oz              $34.95  
Satin Topcoat Finish            $17.95              
Beeswax finish - 6 oz          $13.95     
                         -12 oz         $23.95
Metallic waxes                     $11.95
Brushes small                      $14.95  
               med                       $21.95  
               large                      $24.95

I hope you will stop by Mother Earth Paints and check them out. Tell them Pretty Distressed sent you. I had a lot of fun trying them out. Happy painting!

Preparing a Gender Neutral Nursery Part 2 - Little Foxes

As some of you might remember, we are keeping the gender of our baby a surprise until his/her delivery day in April. I learned from the birth of our daughter that taking care of a newborn and trying to finish a nursery is next to impossible, so I will be creating a gender neutral nursery before our baby's arrival.

There have been lots of changes going on at the Muscari house this holiday break. My hard working hubby was able to take two weeks off and nesting was in full effect for our little bundle. My oldest finally graduated to a full size bed, and our soon to be middle child is out of her crib and in a toddler bed. So, this week is all about the baby's room. We got rid of the lilac walls in our spare room and painted it a white neutral from the Sherwin Williams Pottery Barn collection, Pediment. This is the color I have in my foyer and upstairs hallway, and we had enough left over to finish off the room. Decorating on a budget is in full effect. We will also be using the crib, changing table and upholstered chair from my daughter's room.

Last time we talked gender neutral nurseries, I shared with you my Nautical inspired room. While I still love this idea, I have gone in a little bit of different direction and settled on a Little Fox room.
fox nursery

The color scheme is going to be light blue, navy and orange with some natural wood accents. I think this leans a little bit more to the boy side as most gender neutral nurseries do, but I plan on adding some girly accessories if needed.

Like this chandelier:

AF Lighting 8682-4H Naples Mini Chandelier 4 Light Crafted

Or some flower pom poms for over the crib:

navy nursery decorations

Tissue Paper Pom Pom Flower Ball

I will be sewing my own crib bedding, so look for a future post on that. I have narrowed down my fabric choices and should be getting to work on that soon. I will also be painting a nightstand I have in navy- again post to follow. I can't wait to bring this inspiration board to life. I hope you will enjoy the process with me.

Anyone else working on redecorating a room? I feel like the new year always brings lots of inspiration and an inch for some change. I would love to hear about what you are working on.