Wednesday, April 16, 2014

How to Make Gold Animal Plant Picks

This week on Primitive and Proper is brought to you by plant accessories that are painted gold.  Or at least it should be, because that's what you are getting again here today!  Monday I shared with you some gold leaf hand lettered flower pots and today, I have an easy and whimsical project, gold animal plant picks!  Actually, my friend Katja told me it doesn't get any better than a giraffe on a stick.  I replied that I suppose this project is basically the corn dog of home decor-- pure indulgent joy on a stick.

I am going to share with you exactly how I made these guys!  

You will need:
Plastic animals (I found mine at a flea market, but you can also purchase at any hobby, craft, or toy store)
Cardboard Box
Gold spray paint (I prefer Rust-Oleum's Metallic Gold)
Drill and two bits- one super skinny and one barely wider in diameter than your skewer
Wooden skewers
Scissors or plant snippers
Hot Glue

1. Clean off your plastic animals (if you thrifted them like me) with warm soapy water and let them dry.
2. Lay your animals on their sides on the bottom of a cardboard box.  Spray paint them on this side and allow them to dry.
3. Flip the animals onto their other side and spray that side, allowing them to dry.  Once they are painted check on both sides for any missed spots and make sure you get those.
Here are mine, all dry in their box and waiting for the next step!

4. Using a teeny (not sure what size I used!) drill bit, drill a hole about 1/8-1/4" into the bottom of your animal.
5. Using the bigger bit, widen the hole with the drill.  (It's easier to do it with the lead hole because it's very hard to drill with a larger bit into a teeny plastic animal; trust me on this).

And just for kicks, I thought I'd show you the owl... I had to drill sort of an inappropriate hole!!!  Watch out for gold owl pellets!

Anyhow, where was I before I was distracted by golden poop?
6. Using heavy duty scissors or plant trimmers, cut your wooden skewers to your desired lengths.
7. Using your hot glue gun, place a dot of hot glue in the hole you made in your animal.

8. Place your skewer's cut end into the hole with the hot glue, leaving the sharp pointed end out as that will poke into the soil.  Hold it straight in place while it dries and hardens.

9. Stick them in plants and admire their quirkiness.  The two below are my favorites!

10. Show them to your daughter who says "Wow, Mommy!  You made those with brass animals!"  Think to yourself, "Way to go, Rust-Oleum, with the best quality metallic spray paint ever.  You make plastic look like real metal."

I just love this giraffe!

 And behold.... the owl with the precious golden pellets.  Me wants the precious!

I have a bunch more animals that I painted gold that were slightly too small for this project, so I am thinking of making photo holders, much like the horse place card holders I made.  Remember these guys?

What do you think?  Can you picture them on a mantle or shelf holding old photos?
Oh, and I think I should rename the blog something like "Paint All the Things Gold".  I can't get enough.  Midas has nothing on me.

I also would love to find some bigger animals to create some awesome planters like my friend Caitlin....
Isn't this the coolest?

Have a great day!  I am off to decimate some more plastic animals all in the name of style!

Monday, April 14, 2014

Gold Leaf Lettered Flower Pots

Happy Monday!  Hope you all had a great weekend!  I spent time getting myself mentally and physically prepared for the American Odyssey Relay.  I am going to be so glad when it's over; that is if I live to tell you all about it.  And if I don't, I bet my husband will have one heck of a yard sale, so stay tuned. ;)

Now onto today's project...

I had been on the hunt for flower pots to take with me to the Lucketts Market next month.  I wanted to paint them to fit the look that Sarah and I are aiming for.  Lucky me, I stumbled on a ton of them at the thrift shop last week!  Many were already aged and cool, and some were perfect for my project.  You saw a peek of them last week in my Spring home tour.

I left the ones that were perfectly aged alone, but I gathered up the others and invited a good friend over for a little pot painting party after school last Wednesday.  The kids played and we got crafty!

I left some terra cotta, and painted others white with General Finishes Snow White Milk Paint.  I was totally inspired by a couple of projects I had seen in blogland, including these gold leafed pots as well as these white and gold pots.

Once my painted pots were dry, I got to work using my Artisan Enhancements Gold Leaf and Sizing from Catfish Studios.  (FYI it's not listed in their online shop, but they do have it!  Just email them if you'd like to order).  I painted where I wanted gold with the sizing, then allowed it to sit for 30 minutes.  Then I applied my leafing.  To seal it I used Mod Podge.  I know that is a short and sweet step by step, but click here to get my full tutorial.
I used the sizing to paint words onto my pots, just for fun!

This one is one of my favorites.... Directions included! ;)

This one reads "Oh dear".

I also applied the gold leaf directly to the terracotta pots on a couple of them.  I dipped some, did some at the rims, and gave one a hand written "hello".

I just love how the gold glams up these worn old pots!

Lately I think nothing is safe from gold leaf in my house.  I'm sort of addicted!
Have a great Monday- I am off to make the world shinier and glamorous, one gold leaf project at a time!

Photobucket Sharing here:
  My Uncommon Slice of Suburbia

Friday, April 11, 2014

(My Sorta) Spring Parade of Homes Home Tour

It's Friday, and the sun has been shining all week and it's finally starting to feel like Spring, so it's only right to end the week with a Spring Home Tour!   13 blogs in total have shared their homes this week, and today is the last day!  Please see the entire list of links at the end of this post.

I went a little photo happy, so be prepared.  Let's start outside.  With the warm week we've had I finally was able to get some plants (just potted for now) and spruce up the porch a bit.

We live in a charming Cape Cod Style home.  The colors are NOT my choices with exception to the doors, but one day it will get a Cassie overhaul.  What I do love is the wrap-around porch and the gorgeous views we have.

The front entry greets you with a cheerful florence painted bench, and a little piece of furniture I am currently using as a potting bench.

The window frame was found as is in the perfect color, and note the adorable Sweet Clover pillow that was a gift from a friend when we opened Sweet Clover.

We also have outdoor dining on our porch- a found old antique library table and some chippy chairs I painted.  The tablecloth was a flea market find, and I recently added the dream catcher as well, which was a thrift shop find.

And once Spring hits, the hula hoop becomes a porch fixture, so I am keeping it real here.  Emmy has got to have easy access to the hula hoop!

Inside in the entry, I added a hydrangea stem.... the only fake flower I own.  (Click here for details on the sheep wall).

On the wall facing the sheep wall in the entry, I have a big chalkboard wall, where the kids hang their backpacks.  I always illustrate it for the season.

And heading down the hall off the entry there is a constant splash of color in the kids art gallery wall.  This is one of my favorite areas of my home!

Heading to the left of the entry is the living room.  I just brought a little Spring to the mantle.

Originally the mantle was decorated with Spring flowers, but one they died, I changed it a bit...

I added a live jade plant as well as these brass bunnies my amazing friend and business partner, Sarah, gave me.  I am not much of a bunny and chick Easter kind of girl, but these guys are brass, so I am making the exception.

I also added the Antiques sign to the hearth.  It's a lucky auction find!  And my industrial pipe built ins are still hanging strong with all of their plants.... so far I've had only one casualty.  (This is huge for me, people!)

To the right of the entry is the dining room.  For the season, I've brought in a lot more aqua in the glassware and accents.

I love that the colors play off of the gallery wall.

My sideboard remains one of my favorite pieces, and I have it decorated with natural elements, aqua, and hints of gold for the season. (By the way, you can find me at Tatertots and Jello today sharing how I made the hanging insulator planters).

My secretary/bar even got a little update with some fabulous new hardware in the color of the season for me.... aqua!

Check out these amazing natural stone knobs from The Hob Knobery!  They work perfectly with the color of my front door as you can see, and with everything else!

The dining room also opens to the kitchen, which is almost done its makeover... You can read about its latest progress here.
My master bedroom has been getting a little Spring refresh as well!  I got new bedding which you can read about here, and then found this amazing ginormous abstract painting at the thrift shop which was perfect!  YES, I know the scale is a bit large, but I love it!!!  I purchased two others as well and will share them soon!

Emmy's room is in perpetual Spring/Summer mode with its bright colors!

And just because we don't want to leave anyone out, and if you are new here today, this is your first time seeing my home, here is Sawyer's room...

And the guest room....

Jake and I hope you have enjoyed this tour and that you come back and see us!

Please be sure to visit all of the amazing home tours that were shared this week!

And finally, be sure to stop over to Tatertots and Jello today to see how I made these guys....

And now, that's all I have for you today!  I am looking forward to a glorious sun shiny weekend here!  Hope you have the same!

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

DIY Recycled Glass Backsplash with The Tile Shop

Warning: Super long post with lots of pictures.

You guys!!!!  I am SO excited to share with you my kitchen backsplash today.  About a year ago, we started making plans to redo our hideous kitchen.  We aren't quite done yet, but we are getting close.  Today I am going to share with you step by step how I installed our backsplash.

You will need the following supplies:
Measuring Tape
Tile of your choice
Rubber Gloves (FYI I don't like using gloves, personal choice, so I didn't).
A few giant sponges
A few large buckets
Notched trowel
Appropriately sized tile spacers
White Prolastic with Liquid Prolastic
Tile cutter (a wet saw would be better, but I already owned the cutter)
Flexible Grout Admixture
White Caulk
Haze Remover
Tile and Grout Maintenance Kit

1. Head to The Tile Shop and peruse the aisles to select the perfect tile.  Scan them all for a half hour while your husband tries to keep the kids contained.  Listen to the little voice that says "This one is pretty, Mommy!"  That's right, Emmy found the tile I ended up selecting.  The tile she found is Kirkland, which is a gorgeous recycled glass mosaic.  I loved the colors and the fact that it is recycled!

2. Back at home, design your layout.  Find the center of your design and mark it on the wall.  That's where you want to start from, working your way out.  I centered mine between these two windows and I knew I wanted my tile to go up to the midline of the windows (where open shelving would start).
If you look closely below, you can see my center mark on the wall.  Right above my skillet and spatula from making my egg..... protein power!

3. Draw a line where the tile will stop (unless of course you are working under cabinets or going all the way to the ceiling).  Use a level to help create this line to make sure it is straight.  Draw a line perpendicularly through your center.

4. Lay your design out somewhere you have plenty of room to work.  I used my kitchen floor because I had the help of straight lines in existence. At this time, I only laid out the center area, and not any of the areas where tile would need to be cut, to save room for error.

 5. Continue to lay it out, and step back and admire your tile and matching boots. (It was a rainy day, perfect for an indoor DIY!)  Use your spacers to keep everything evenly lined.

 6. Before you get really messy with adhesive and grout, change clothes.  I like to put on my trusty worn out paint splattered jeans and my dad's college sweatshirt.... My parents are a huge DIY inspiration to me, so this sweatshirt summons that spirit in me.  I believe in the magic of the sweatshirt.

7. Working in an area of about 2 feet diameter, use the trowel to apply your mixed prolastic adhesive.
Chris snapped this picture of me applying it long after I had started.

8. Use the notched side of the trowel to score the adhesive, and then press your tile firmly into place. (My tile was a mosaic with paper to hold it together.  That type needs to be applied with the paper facing out).  I used my float to help me press and apply pressure to the tile.  Be sure to use spacers between your mosaic sheets or tiles as they will help everything stay properly aligned.  You will grout over these so don't worry if they show.

9. As you approach your edges and outlets, you will need to start cutting tiles.  I used a handy tile cutter which can only cu simple straight lines. You use it by placing the tile on the cutter, then rolling a sharp wheel over where you want your cut several times to score it.  Once it is amply score, you press the handle down to apply pressure, hear a pop, and it's cut! 
Below, you can see my tiles to are marked with permanent marker (easy to clean off glass tile)

10. Once all of your tiles are in place, take a shower... you will be sweaty after all this labor!  Then admire your work and allow it to set overnight.
11. Because I had the paper back mosaic tile, I had to remove the paper before I could grout, but AFTER the tile has set.   To do this, Fill a bucket with warm water.  Use a sponge to saturate the paper, working in one area at a time.  Once it is wet enough peel the paper off.
As you can see below, some areas peeled better than others, and some left me with a lot behind to clean.  I continued to saturate and used a razor to scrape it all off.  This part was probably the most tedious.

Also, because this tile is glass it is see through.  Below you can see where a piece of the paper ended up folding behind a tile and was on the wrong side.  I used a screwdriver to pry this tile off the wall and then reapplied it, with another tile that came off while I scrubbed.
12. Reapply any tiles that may have come loose using the adhesive.  Now, I know you are supposed to let it set another 24 hours, but I didn't have the time, so I let it set for two hours before I got to work grouting.  Just want to be honest with you!  I think for one or two tiles it's OK, but I wouldn't recommend that for an entire wall!

13. Mix your grout and flexible admixture and apply grout working at a 45 degree angle to get into all those spaces.  Use your float to do this and use your muscles- apply pressure to really get in there.  Work in small areas.

14. Use a wet sponge to wipe away the excess grout.

15.  Repeat steps 13 and 14 until the entire area has been grouted.

16. Caulk your window seams and counter seams.  We also caulked our edges. (I hate caulking so as Chris heard me cussing at the caulk gun, he came to my rescue and finished this step.)

17. Use your haze remover as needed to clean your tile with a sponge.

18. Wait 48-72 hours and then apply your sealer with a sponge.

19. Clean up your mess, put your kitchen back in order, replace your switch plates, and high fives all around!  You did it!

And now you get to see the pretty pictures you've been waiting for!

I just love the colors in these tiles, and love it with my navy cabinets.

The color also works perfectly with our door.

The color ties into the color on my vintage industrial stools.

Won't my fox treat jar (he hold's my hound's treats!) look perfect sitting on a shelf above this tile?

Now, there are a couple of imperfect areas I want to point out and discus.  I tiled all along the back of the sink, but turns out there was less room under the right window than the left.

The left side fit perfectly...

However, the right side did not.  I ended up cutting one row off of the paper sheet, and squeezing it in, this there is less grout on the right side.  It's really not that noticeable, and seemed like a better and less noticeable fix than trimming the tile down.

Also, you may wonder why I ended the tile here I did next to the sink and not at the door frame.  As you can see below, we have very odd outlets and switches that were there from the beginning.  If I tile this area I was afraid it would look like a wonky white mosaic, and I'd rather have all those covers blend into the white wall.

That created an odd edge for me, and I am still trying to figure out the best solution for that.  For now, mini ship art is my solution.

We also ended it where the countertop ends on the other side.  If we hadn't I would have had a large expanse of wall behind our shelving unit to cover, and that would have jus been too busy for my eyes.  You can see below where it would have gone.

And one more thing I want to address.... we loosened up our outlets and pulled them forward to make up for the room the tile took underneath the switchplate.  That was what worked best for us and our outlets.

Overall, I am thrilled!  I can't wait to get my shelves up!  At that time, the bull will still be on the wall, but the gold frame will come down.... that was just a temporary solution for me.

I really truly can't believe how close we are to having the kitchen of our dreams!  Just as a little refresher, I will leave you with where we started on move in day....

Here is the wall where the refrigerator sits, and the wall to the right is the one that I just tiled.

 This wall is where the island is now.

Now, if you are new to the blog, you can really see just  how far we've come!
Disclosure: The Tile Shop provided me with all tile and materials, but all opinions are my own.

Sharing here: 
Tatertots and Jello; East Coast Creative

That DIY PartyThe Bold Abode
ItsOverflowingMy Uncommon Slice of SuburbiaElizabeth and Co.