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Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Floor Length Mirror Tutorial

Floor length Mirror Tutorial – No Kreg Jig Required!

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Today I want to share a quick tutorial on a simple way to frame a mirror. This frameless mirror was a freebie from a friend of mine who was moving and did not want to take it with her. It was actually double the width and I had it cut down the middle at this glass shop in town, which gave me two nice and long pieces to work with. The second piece is still frameless. Someday I will get to it…
Now that I have shown you the end result, let’s start from the beginning:
This is what the mirror looked like once I had it cut. It was a good size for a leaning mirror–all it needed was a nice thick frame!
I knew that I did not want to finish the corners at a 45 degree angle, which simplified my project even more since I did not own any tools back when I did this. My wood planks were about 7 inches wide. So….this is probably the best way to tell you how I figured out the length of my four pieces:
Horizontal piece: width of the mirror + (width of wood X 2) – 1/2 inch.  So, if your mirror’s width is 20 inches and your wood planks are 7 inches wide, then your horizontal piece will be 20 inches + 14 inches -1/2 inch = 33.5 inches. You will need to cut two of these.
Vertical piece: Length of mirror – 1/2 inch. So, if your length is 60 inches, then your vertical piece will be 59.5 inches. You will need to cut two of these.
Note: Remember that these wood pieces will be sitting on top of the mirror. The -1/2 inch measurement is the distance from the mirror edge that will be behind the mirror, which when split by half will give you a 1/4 inch distance all around that will sit behind the frame. If you think that is not enough, you may increase this measurement to -3/4 inch or even up to 1 inch. I just wanted as much of the mirror to show once the frame was attached.
Once I had my four pieces cut, I actually used glue and a staple gun (Can you see the staples?) to attach them. A Kreg Jig would have been phenomenal for this project, but I made it work without one. Yay! I added glue to where the sides join together, and then I stapled the joints to keep them together while drying. Not as sturdy as when you use screws, but it is sturdy enough. This is a piece that is never moved nor handled for any reason, so the staples and the wood glue worked perfectly fine.
Once your frame is fully dried, you may give it a quick sanding and then stain it. I used dark walnut from Minwax. For a tutorial on how to apply stain, search the internet, I am sure you will find one. Lol! Now the fun part–lay the frame right side down, and lay the mirror on top facing down, just like the picture shows. The tricky part about this was making sure that the 1/4 inch distance I accounted for to sit on the frame was evenly spaced all the way around. Once I did that, I went ahead and attached these awesome mirror clips that I got from Amazon. To know what size to get you need to measure the thickness of your mirror. These are to hold a 1/4 inch thick mirror, but they also have some that are 1/8 inch for thinner mirrors. I used 8 of them, two on each corner.
I think this mirror looks best when it is just leaning, instead of hanging it like a traditional mirror. You may also distress the edges of the frame a bit with sand paper if you want it to have a more rustic and worn look.
So….that’s it. Do you have a frameless mirror laying around somewhere that could use a frame? Go for it, it is not as hard as you may think it is. Let me know if you have any other questions about this project!

How to Build Board - N - Batten Shutters

Hello friends! It’s been a while since I have shared with you another one of my easy projects, so here I am, ready to make your day! These shutters are super simple to make, and even though I don’t have pictures of every single step, I don’t think you will need them. You can make these in 1/2 a day, and once you install them on your bare window and see the transformation, you will wonder why in the world you waited so long to do this! Ready to tackle this? Let’s do it!
Materials needed:
Wood (cedar or pine work fine) – 1 inch thick X 6 inches wide boards. Make sure they are nice and straight.
Wood glue
Miter saw (or just get them cut at Lowes or Home Depot)
Hinges (optional – link below)
First, cut 6 boards (three for each panel) the length of the window (mine was 60 inches tall). Then cut 4 horizontal pieces (2 for each panel) that are the exact width of what your finished panel will be. To determine the width of your panels, just measure the width of your window and divide by half. My window was 36 inches wide, so each one of my panels ended up being about 18 inches wide. Once I had everything cut I gave all the pieces a quick sanding to make them nice and smooth.
Make sure you measure each board since the 6 inch wide measurement is closer to 5 3/4 inches than it is to 6 inches. Once you know exactly how wide your planks are you can then determine the space between the boards, which, along with the measured width of the three boards should match the length of the two horizontal pieces.shuttersraw2 Glue the top horizontal piece with wood glue and place some heavy books on it to keep it from sliding (use clamps if you already have some). Do the same thing with the bottom horizontal piece. The distance from the top and the bottom can vary–you can place the horizontal pieces on the boards before gluing them and then step back to see if it looks good to you. If not, adjust the measurement until satisfied. Keep in mind that the smaller the length of the panel the smaller the distance from the top and the bottom to the horizontal pieces. Mine were about 6 inches from the top and the bottom.
shutters 1
Once the glue dries you can turn your shutters over and nail them from the back for extra sturdiness. Use nails that are no longer than 1 3/4 inches long to make sure everything is well attached. Or you may use an electric drill and screws instead. The reason why I wait until the glue is semi dry to do this step is to keep the boards from sliding on me while I am trying to drill into them. But at the time I did not have any clamps to hold the wood steady. If you do have clamps, you can apply the glue, set the wood pieces where they need to be, clamp them, and then screw from behind.
I used a dark walnut stain from minwax that is gel based. It glides on like paint. It is one of my favorite colors for staining wood. Then I brushed a semi gloss polyurethane on the front and back since these shutters are facing south and will get a lot of sun, rain and snow. I am planning on doing the polyurethane once a year to keep the wood in the best condition possible and for the longest time.
Talking about wood, make sure you get good quality wood. Cedar is a great option if you want to spend a little more.  I bought pine to keep everything low cost. I will let you know how they are holding up after one year of facing the elements! =-)
The hardware that I used I bought from amazon. They are actually plastic hinges! Again, I wanted to spend the least amount of money, and wrought iron hinges, although beautiful, were out of my budget. These ones worked out great and they dressed up the shutters nicely.
shutters 3)
As far as hanging the shutters on the brick wall, that is one thing I did not do. We have a friend who is a contractor and he had the right drill and screws to get it all done perfectly. He spaced the shutters about an inch from the window. I wish I could tell you how to do it yourself but I have no clue! Lol!
shutters 4
Do you have any bare windows that need some dressing up? I hope you liked this simple project and that you are now pumped up to build some yourself. If there is anything you want more detail about please let me know!
Thanks for stopping by.  -Beverly

Monday, May 4, 2015

The Trunk Company - Rexburg, Idaho

I truly have to laugh when I read the title to my post. So far, I have only built two storage trunks--one for me and one to sell. My idea of selling my trunks is very far from being a "company," but I like the way it sounds. I enjoy coming up with catchy names for the businesses I will own and run in the future--like Fabric Crush, or Top-Notch Upholstery. Nothing wrong with dreaming big, right?

As I said in my previous post, I love to work with wood. After having some experience with reupholstery, I can honestly say I will make another trunk before I have to reupholster a sofa. I still love reupholstery, but with woodworking you can go straight into creating--there is no prepping stage. With reupholstery, the prepping stage cannot be avoided. Removing old, dirty, stained fabric and dealing with a million staples adds another step--and not an easy one-- before I can get to the fun part and start transforming a furniture piece. I guess I am just a little impatient, and woodworking gets me to the end much faster than I can with reupholstery.

If you are on the look out for a storage chest/trunk that will serve as a coffee table, or just storage for the end of your bed, stay tuned for a new store in town that will open at the end of this month. My trunks will be sold at this unique store, and I cannot wait for you to see them in person.  
This trunk was built with maple hardwoods and pine. 

Every trunk will be beautiful and different. I will be trying different stains, colors, and hardware to make them special and not the cookie cutter type.  On this particular one I used a custom finish for the stain--dark walnut with some other hand applied colors to give the finish some depth. 

I paid special attention to the handles, back hinges, and front latch. 
It is a beautiful piece.
I almost do not want to get rid of it, but you can only have so many storage trunks in a house 
before it starts to look ridiculous. Lol!

This is a BRAND-NEW item and up for grabs. Nothing old or refurbished was used on this baby. I carefully selected all the wood and hardware to build it just for you. 

So, what are you waiting for? =-)

Woodworking and Plantains

Woodworking has always had a place in my heart. I like the simplicity of just measuring and cutting pieces of wood and how really beautiful things can be created from just assembling those pieces together. Many years ago, Melody Hancock, a good friend of mine from Arizona, shared her woodworking passion with me. We made about 30 plantain smashers (or"tostoneras" for those that are familiar with this term) to give away to family and friends for Christmas. I drew the design and she showed me how to cut, sand and assemble these cute things. If you have never seen one,  I will enlighten you right at this moment:

It is quite the gadget let me tell you. =-) 

This is what you can make with this wooden tool. In Puerto Rico, they are called "tostones." And they are absolutely delicious! Yes, they are fried. There is no going around that my friends. If you want to experience heaven in just one bite, you gotta fry these babies. Yumm!

Now, this is what plantains look like before they are fried. To make tostones, they have to be completely green. If they have a bit of yellow is totally fine- you will just end up with a toston that tastes a bit sweet. 

Use a sharp knife to cut off the tips and then slice the tough skin open. With the same knife, push the skin away from the goodness inside until the plantain is uncovered. You would think that these beauties peel just like a ripe banana would. Nope. The skin actually sticks to the inside a bit and you need the knife to separate it. But it is not a hard process at all!

Then you cut them into rounds of about 1/2 inch. Some people cut them a little thicker to end up with a bigger toston. If you do that you may have to use more oil and fry them a bit longer to get them to soften up before smashing. 

As I said before, they need to be partially fried before the smashing step. I cook them for a few minutes on both sides at medium temperature. Some people use a sauce pan and add plenty oil to cover them. I try to avoid using too much oil, so I just use a regular skillet with enough oil to cover the bottom of the pan, then I let them cook on both sides until they soften up a bit. Do not let them 
crisp up at this stage.

When a fork can be inserted into them, they are ready to be flattened! Put a bit of oil in the center of the circle (just use a spoon a get some from the skillet) and on the lid, then smash away. Remove the toston with a fork and throw back in the oil. Continue with the same process until finished. When they look crisp and golden (use a spatula to turn them half way), remove from the oil and have a plate prepared with a couple paper towels to drain the tostones. Sprinkle with a generous amount of salt. Serve with rice and beans or eat them as a snack. Enjoy!

I honestly had no intentions to write a post about plantains. Lol! I am glad that I did, though. 

Monday, April 6, 2015

Padded Headboards

These gorgeous padded headboards I put together for my boys. They are very simple to make. There are a lot of tutorials online that do a good job with the step by step instructions. If you still have questions about this let me know!




Rebecca Trunk - Finally finished!

Hello friends! For the longest time I was wanting to build a blanket storage trunk. I was getting tired of seeing all my blankets piled up in a corner on this half broken basket! 

 Thanks to the free plans provided by Ana White and many other DIYers I adjusted the measurements and made a copy cat version of the Rebecca Trunk from Pottery Barn. Here is a picture of the original trunk:

 So, what do you think? Are you tempted to build your own? You may find the free plans through the Shanty2Chic website or the Ana White website.

Please contact me if you have any questions about this project!

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Are you ready for this?

Hello friends! Christmas is just around the corner, and so are my Simply Wheat Bread Baskets! 

 If you need to come up with a unique gift to treat a special teacher, employee, boss, mother in law, friend, or just for yourself, this is a great gift option. The basket will include:

1 Loaf of Bread - 100% freshly ground Whole Wheat
1 small canning jar with Homemade Honey-Butter
1 block of Cranberry Manwaring Cheese
1 Christmas Ornament
1 Basket
Tissue paper
Festive Bow
Gift tag

All for $25.00! 

 I will take orders until November 30th. If you would like me to include a cutting board with a bread knife, I can do that for an extra $10.00. Another option would be to not include the cheese and make it $30.00. I can customize it to your needs, so just call me and we can talk about it. 

 This next one is I did for Valentines. Cute, right?

Anyway, all the decorative items, including the ornament, will vary depending on what I have available. One thing will not change--how gorgeous it will turn out. =-) To order call/text me at 602-684-4009.  Thanks for stopping by!