apartment update: new DIY projects to share

April 21, 2014


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OK, back to the post. Our apartment has turned into a bit of a DIY factory this past month. It all started with an abandoned door we found next to a dumpster by our apartment that we decided to turn into a headboard. That was a long, laborious, but ultimately rewarding DIY that I’ll share soon, but that whole process motivated me to finally attack some lingering—and much easier—projects on my list. The truth is, I can be quite lazy. And though I do Pin a lot of crafts and love the idea of making something myself, I often don’t have the patience or gentle touch.

But once I got started with one, I got DIY fever.

The gold mug above is maybe the simplest DIY on this planet. Make a pattern with tape, spray paint with choice of color, and coat with ceramic sealer. But because I am so lazy and it took me months to go to Michael’s and get that dang ceramic spray, I only just finished it. But I love the end result! It’s easily my favorite mug for morning coffee.

And as for the three other projects…


During our RTW trip, we collected a postcard from every country we visited—and from every city if we were really on top of it. We had dreams of collaging the cards into one frame, and it took me more than a year to finally do it. What really got me in the zone was finding a large, empty frame near my apartment. (Dumpster diving is the best.) I primed it and then painted it with white paint because I wanted the color and variety of postcards to stand out. I then pasted each postcard with reusable mounting tape onto a piece of cardboard and secured that into the frame. There’s no glass to protect the whole poster, but I like the bulletin board look. Reminds me of hostel tack boards with postcards, pictures, and maps. It’s hanging in our bedroom, which was previously lacking on the travel souvenir front.


Yep, dumpster diving strikes again. I found this just a few weeks after moving to San Diego last year and for a while it went un-DIYed in all its generic stool glory. One day last summer I slapped some white paint on it and hastily spray painted the bottom tips gold. While I was painting last weekend, I finally came to terms with how sad it looked and gave it a fresh coat of paint and new copper tips. These dip dyed stools from Serena & Lily were my inspiration.


I bought this ottoman-bench from the Kobey’s Swap Meet flea market last year but waited until I found just the right fabric to redo it. I scoured thrift shops and fabric stores, but in the end, it was a cloth sheet from India that made the cut. The actual upholstering was so easy. I simply cut the cloth with extra fabric on all sides, pulled it taught, and secured it over the existing fabric with a staple gun. I’m not sure white was the best choice for the frame, but I didn’t want to buy a whole new can of paint and I also liked how the white brightened up the fabric’s darker colors. Right now this bench is more a catch-all for mail, keys, and Teddy’s toys, but I’m looking forward to giving it a proper home whenever we move to a bigger place.

Stay tuned for all the details on making the headboard. It’s a good one!

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