Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Sneak Peek: walkway progress

After I put this graphic together, I realized that this is actually a walkway, not a sidewalk . . . oh well. 

Anyway . . . I started this about two months ago, and then Oklahoma got hit with this crazy heat wave, and it was too hot to work with the product outside to finish it!

The photo at the left (with Talullah), and the upper right photo show the first step. The bottom right photo shows the second.

I'll be posting a step-by-step soon, but I thought I'd show you my progress . . . step one, stencil on the design. Step two, go back in with a brush, and paint in the details by hand. It's going to take a few days, as it is still hot out, and my knees don't love me for sitting on them for too long at a time, but progress has been made.

What do you think?

Monday, August 27, 2012

Black and White Pumpkins - How To

Last year I purchased several foam pumpkins for use in my photography business. I knew I wouldn't use them again this year, so I thought I'd do something fun with them for my porch this Fall.

I picked these foam pumpkins up at Wal-mart and Target at various times.

I had this white spray paint on hand, so I used it. Had I been planning this, however, I would have used spray Kilz or another primer, so that I would have had better coverage.

This is about 1/2 a can of spray paint, at which point, I ran out. As you can see, you can still see orange through it, so I had to go back in with white paint and a brush for more coverage.

Once you have covered the pumpkins in white paint so there is no orange seeping through, begin painting your designs. For the Checkerboard and Striped pumpkins, I started with a 1" Flat brush. 

I found that the easiest way to do this was to paint a line the width of the brush, and then go the next stripe below it, and then go back to the upper line - switching between the upper and lower lines working your way around the pumpkin.

Very quickly, the pattern will emerge, and it is easy to follow.

Because of the curved surface, it is a challenge to get straight lines. Don't fret. You will clean up the lines later.

Once the main "squares" were dry, I went in with a #10 Round brush and painted stripes down the connecting walls of the checks. Afterward, I went in with a clean brush and white paint to further straighten lines, and get rid of any mistakes like that big one below!)

Finally, using a 10/0 liner brush, I added white squiggle lines to the top and bottom of each of the black squares. If you are not comfortable using a 10/0 (the trick is in steadying your hand by planting the pinky, and thinning your paint to ink-like consistency), you can use a paint pen to add these lines.

And here is the finished look.

Next, the striped pumpkin was painted by tracing the groves of the pumpkin to create an outline of the stripe.

Then fill it in with your paint.

No matter how neat you try to be, you will make mistakes.

Like this (where I sat the pumpkin down directly on wet paint.) Don't worry. These clean up easily with white paint - although it might take a couple of coats for full coverage.

Once you have cleaned up your lines, add squiggle lines with white paint using a 10/0 brush or a paint pen. Also, paint the stem of the pumpkin black.

For the dotted pumpkin, draw circles using a #10 Round brush. Don't worry about perfection with your circles. No one will notice once the piece is finished. I also painted the stem of this pumpkin in black.

Finally, using a 10/0 liner brush, or a paint pen, ad swirls to random dots. I did about six swirl dots on the entire pumpkin in various places.

And here it is . . . that striped one reminds me a bit of Beetlejuice, but I'm fine with that! It matches my funky black/white patio!

I'm on the hunt for a couple more of these foam pumpkins in larger sizes, as I'd like to add a couple of bright pink pumpkins to the display.

This project has been featured at the following sites:

Nutmeg Place

Places where this project is linked:

The Girl Creative

Sumo's Sweet Stuff

DIY Show Off

Ninth Street Notions


Dixie n Dottie

In The Old Road 

shabby creek cottage

Too Much Time On My Hands

Mom 4 Real

Small Projects - Big Impact

I have accumulated a long "to do" list over the last few months - small projects, and a few large one's - for things I want to do.

Earlier, I posted the story of how I painted the shutters on the front of my sister's Guest Cottage. This week, I finally got the door painted. Here is the "before" photo.

Because the door is metal, I had paint mixed to match the shutters in an oil based enamel specifically for metal. The first step is to wash the door down with a deglosser. The great thing about the deglossers on the market now is that you don't have to wash the door after you apply it. Just let it dry, and you are ready to paint.

Next, I went through and taped off all the hardware on the door.

This is after two coats of paint. I started by painting the edges of the door, and the the depressed ridges of the design using a 1.5" brush for oil paint, and then I filled in the rest with a small roller.

After three coats, I had excellent coverage. I did go back in and touch up a couple of spots, but because of the high contrast of the old and new colors, it was easy to see where I was lacking paint as I worked. 

Something I didn't consider when I was painting the door was that because the color is so intense, when the door is opened, it reflects that color throughout the room. Fortunately, the color works in the surrounding rooms, but it is something you should think about before you decide on a color.

To paint the door, I used about 1/4 of a Quart of paint!

The next project is this Ampersand that I purchased at Affair of the Heart in Tulsa. He now has an Etsy shop! Fortunately, the wood cutter I purchased it from had done a good job of wood puttying rough spots, and sanding the piece. I just gave it all a light sanding, and then painted it with this Krylon champagne color.

Here it is in my Living Room.

Another quick project was painting my dog's bowl riser. Because it is plastic, you must make sure it is clean, clean, clean, and then prime it with a paint that is appropriate for plastic. 

Next, I spray painted the riser with Jade spray paint.

Finally, I added dots and lines with a round brush and black DecoArt Patio Paint. To make sure everything stayed in place, I sprayed the entire piece with a clear gloss spray to seal it.

This next project was a bit more time intensive, but not bad at all!

This Pottery Barn cube was given to my by my niece for my living room. I liked it, but it was substantially shorter than my other side table. Rather than purchase a new table, I just ordered bun feet online!

After sanding, I spray painted the feet to match the cube.

To determine placement, I first looked at how close I wanted the feet to sit compared to the edge. As you can see, there is a rubber tip on the bottom of the cube in each corner, so I needed to bring the foot in so that it didn't sit on that tip, as I could not remove it.

Next, I needed to find an appropriate sized tip for the holes. I did this by comparing the tip to the screw at the top of the foot. When I found one about the same size, I used it to drill the holes.

I needed to measure the width of the foot, and the placement of the foot.

Once I had that measurement, I knew where to measure for the placement of the foot.

After drilling the four holes. I sanded around the hole to give some "tooth" to the wood so that the glue would grip it. I used Gorilla Glue around the screw, and along the top of the foot.

Next, I screwed the feet into the holes in the base, and then left the piece for an hour to let the glue dry well.

That's it! I simply flipped the piece over, and it was ready to go!

Here is the final piece. (I have since replaced that lamp, btw!)

So . . .  here is what I am working on now. I purchased three of those paintable foam fake pumpkins you can purchase for decor at places like Wal-mart. 

I wiped all three pumpkins down with a household cleaner, and after they dried, I painted them with white paint. 

It uses quite a bit of paint to get good coverage. I think, if I was to do more, I would use Kilz. 

Stay tuned to see what I will be doing with the pumpkins!