Sunday, January 24, 2016

DIY Wood Pet Bowl Placemats

Hey y'all!

I hope everyone on the east coast survived the blizzard, I still can not believe we got three feet here in Virginia!

Molly, Ms. Kay and I had to hold down the fort ourselves while Corey was out plowing a parking lot that just so happened to have a Bonefish on it. I tried to get him to bring me some bang bang shrimp on his way home but that didn't work out. Something about the feet of snow prevented the cooks from arriving.

Since we were expecting blizzard conditions I went Bear Grylls up in here. I did everything I could to prepare in case the power went out, including filling up the bathtub with water so I could still get my business done. I kept the door to the bathroom shut so Ms Kay (our cat) wouldn't go in there.

I guess she sensed there was something forbidden behind the door because all day Saturday I would hear her open the door and then I would run over to get her out. I knew she was going in there to check out the water in the bathtub and I didn't want her to fall in (this cat has a weird obsession with water).

Eventually, I got tired of removing her from the bathroom and I figured, if she falls in trying to drink the water, she'll learn her lesson.

So now, it's later on in the day and I'm working on something in the kitchen when I hear her open the door.

Two minutes later I heard a splash.

I dropped everything and started running to the bathroom to see if she needed help getting out of the tub. Before I got to the bathroom she had gotten out on her own, soaking wet and was running away from me.

I guess she thought I would be mad at her because I kept telling her not to go in there.

She was so traumatized by the whole incident, I don't think she'll go near a bathtub ever again.

But, if that was the biggest issue I had throughout this blizzard, I think we did pretty good fending for ourselves while Corey was out plowing.

And is still out plowing.

Yes folks, the snow is that serious.

Alright, enough of my snow stories, let's move on to why you're here!

If you followed my old blog, Polka Dots in the Country, you may have seen Molly and Ms. Kay's eating areas, or shrines as Corey calls them. I personally think it's cute to have a picture of each of them above their bowls, he thinks it's weird.


I liked the set up I made for them, but after a while I decided to simplify their spaces.

And... the fact that their bowls didn't match started to bother me.

So, the first thing I did was head on over to Home Goods to find some matching bowls for cheap. I bought these over the summer so I can't remember the prices exactly, but I want to say each of Molly's bowls were $4.99 maybe $3.99 and Ms. Kay's came in a set of four, and I believe that cost me $7.99 or $6.99.

I also decided to get rid of the signs and the rugs. I sold everything but the "you had me at meow" sign at a yard sale, so that made up for the money I spent on the new bowls.

If you're interested, I still have that sign. The person who was supposed to buy it never showed up to the yard sale. Don't you hate when that happens?

Originally I was going to look for some actual placemats to use under their new bowls. But while I was visiting Cremé de la Cremé I saw all of these little enamel signs and I had a lightbulb moment. I knew I had scrap wood at home and plenty of paint so I could make some wooden placemats and attach these little entrée signs to them!

This project is seriously so simple, the most time consuming part is the painting. Since the wood I had on hand wasn't long enough I made three pocket holes in one piece of the wood to secure the two pieces together, like below:

After I made my pocket holes, I used two clamps and some wood glue to attach the two pieces. Once they were secured in place I drilled my screws into the pocket holes and boom. I had me a placemat.

If you want to make it look like one solid piece of wood you can either buy a long, solid piece of wood, or you can use wood filler to fill the gap. I wasn't concerned about filling in any gaps so I moved on to painting.

I originally painted and distressed the placemats with Annie Sloan Chalk Paint in Old White. I liked it, but then decided I needed more contrast, especially since the little signs were white. So I applied two coats of Annie Sloan Chalk Paint in Graphite on top of the Old White. Once the paint dried I distressed each piece with some fine grit sandpaper, wiped off all the chalkiness from the paint and applied a light coat of Annie Sloan Clear Wax.

Once that was set, I screwed the metal signs into the wood and that was it!

This was the best picture I could get of Ms. Kay near her new set up. Maybe if the bowls were on the kitchen counter she would've participated a little better. 

Molly was a little more willing to participate. 

So far, these placemats are working out great. It's something different and I love how easy they are to clean. No more washing those rugs!

And no, the flowers are not permanent, I just added them to make the pictures pretty. 

Not gonna lie though, even though they're extremely impractical I may keep them there. 

Thanks for stopping by and click here to see where I party each week!
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Sunday, January 17, 2016

DIY Boot Tray

Hello and happy Monday!

I hope everyone had a great weekend, I am finally back with a project post and in case you have no idea what's been going on with me lately, click here to find out why I've been so absent.

Now, on to today's project!

Before I built this boot tray we had been using a basket to contain all of our muddy boots. However, the basket wasn't working out because 1. Corey's boots are huge and 2. Corey's boots are huge.

So, off to Target to take a look at what kind of boot trays they had to offer. I first saw this one, love the size and shape but I didn't think the copper color would go well with the hardwood floors. The only other option I found was one of the cheap plastic ones. We've had one before and since they're so lightweight they tend to move all over the floor.

Since I didn't find anything I liked and in my price range, I decided to make one!

I used the plans found here, but to keep the cost down I used a 1x8x6 pine board for the base instead of the 14x36 pine board the plans call for. All I needed to do was cut the board to the length I wanted, then used a Kreg Jig to make pocket holes to connect the the two boards together for the base.

Once the tray was assembled I filled the nail holes and any gaps with wood filler and applied two coats of Annie Sloan Chalk Paint in graphite and two coats of poly to protect the wood.

Once the poly dried I filled the bottom with river rocks, and that was it!


Finally something that looks great but is also big enough to fit those big ole boots. 

And... click here to see where I party!
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Sunday, January 10, 2016

New Year, New Blog, New Everything

Hey y'all!

I am finally getting back into blogging again and I could not be more excited.

You may recognize the picture of Corey, Molly and I from Polka Dots in the Country. Long story short, I started that blog the first year we moved into our home. Almost a year after that I decided to become more "official" by upgrading to Wordpress and buying my own domain. A year after that I started slacking around renewal time and completely forgot to renew my domain. Therefore, it expired and shut down my website. To get it back I'd have to donate my right kidney and since that little blog didn't make what I needed to pay to bring my site back I decided to go back to Blogger because it is Fo Free. Around this time I had a bunch of personal crap going on that I won't bore you with and honestly, I wasn't feeling the whole blogging thing. I was still working on our casa and what not, but I didn't feel like putting in all that time and effort into documenting everything. However, things are much better now, I've missed this little community, and I am finally feeling ready to jump back in.

Obviously jumping back in with a new look, new name, new everything.

So, you're probably wondering "Why the heck is this blog called Louise at Home if your name is Maggie?"

That is a valid question and pretty soon I'll be sharing the reason behind the name.

In the meantime, I am still tweaking my new look, so if you see some different colors/fonts up in here I'm just trying to perfect everything... that I'll eventually change again in three months because that's how I roll.

Keep a look out for my next blog post, can't wait to share some of the projects I've been working on!

P.S: Since my .com blog is no longer available you can see my previous posts under my Hometalk account here!

- Maggie aka Louise
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