Bali Dream Deck for Thompsons Water Seal | Pretty Handy Girl

Last month while most of the US was under heavy blankets of snow and ice, I flew to Dallas. I was hoping to find warm temperatures and lots of sun. And if I couldn’t find any, I’d create my own with my sister, Caitlin’s help. Thompson’s WaterSeal asked me to design a dream deck and told me to bring an assistant. Normally I work alone, but when I need help with design and décor I know I can always count on Caitlin. Some of you may remember when Caitlin and I worked together on renovating this beach condo. Caitlin is the talented designer behind Symmetry Designs.

Bali Dream Deck for Thompsons Water Seal | Pretty Handy Girl

When we arrived, the weather was mild, but we were still craving some warm sunshine. We decided to create a Bali getaway destination on our Thompson’s WaterSeal Deck. We started with a clean slate deck pre-stained with Thompson’s WaterSeal Semi-Transparent Water Proofing Stain in a beautiful Acorn Brown color.

Bali Dream Deck for Thompsons Water Seal | Pretty Handy Girl

Joining us were Beckie from Infarrantly Creative with her assistant Erin and Ashley & Jamin from The Handmade Home. They also had a blank slate deck to design.

Bali Dream Deck for Thompsons Water Seal | Pretty Handy Girl

The first thing Caitlin and I did was paint a giant white mandala “tattoo” on our deckRead more

Racing Stripe Mirror Makeover | Pretty Handy Girl

While my sister and I were renovating the Topsail Beach condo we had a strict budget. Finding a large mirror for less than $15 was challenging until I found this mirror with potential. I know my sister was doubtful, but I had a vision. Some red milk paint, lattice and glue would make this racing stripe makeover complete!

Racing Stripe Mirror Makeover | Pretty Handy Girl

To transform the mirror, I disassembled the top and cut off the panel portion using my Dremel MultiMax. I salvaged the top crown moulding and re-attached it to the new top of the mirror with glue and finish nails.

Then it was time to add stripes.

Materials (some links are Amazon affiliate links):

Instructions:

Tape off the edge of the mirror where it meets the frame. Paint two coats of Miss Mustard Seed Tricycle red paint onto the frame. (See this post for painting with milk paint.)

Racing Stripe Mirror Makeover | Pretty Handy Girl

After the paint dries, wax it or leave it unfinished. Mark the center of the frame at the top and bottom of the mirror.

Racing Stripe Mirror Makeover | Pretty Handy Girl

Cut pieces of lattice to fit the mirror frame width. (I used three pieces of lattice and cut a fourth piece in half for the outer stripes.) Pre-paint the lattice pieces ironstone (white) and let dry.

Wet the frame and the back of the lattice. Apply a small amount of Gorilla Glue to the backs of the lattice.

Racing Stripe Mirror Makeover | Pretty Handy Girl

Line up the center lattice piece with the pencil mark. Attach it and the other two pieces beside the middle lattice.

Racing Stripe Mirror Makeover | Pretty Handy Girl

Use a ruler to create a space between the middle stripe and the outer small lattice piece. Glue the outer pieces in place.

Racing Stripe Mirror Makeover | Pretty Handy Girl

Set a weight (or paint can) on top of a scrap board and the lattice pieces while the glue dries.

Racing Stripe Mirror Makeover | Pretty Handy Girl

Remove the weight. Paint the top and bottom edge of the mirror frame white to create the illusion that the stripe continues around the frame edges. Distress the lattice pieces with sandpaper if you want a rustic look.

Racing Stripe Mirror Makeover | Pretty Handy Girl

Hang your mirror on the wall and admire! Not bad for $15, two coats of paint, and some scrap lattice!

Some red milk paint, lattice and glue transform this $15 find into a charming racing stripe mirror perfect for a boys' room! | thrift store makeover | DIY mirror | mirror tutorial | #prettyhandygirl #DIY #tutorial

The mirror hangs happily in the twin bedroom at the Topsail Beach Condo. Click here to see the rest of the condo!

Some red milk paint, lattice and glue transform this $15 find into a charming racing stripe mirror perfect for a boys' room! | thrift store makeover | DIY mirror | mirror tutorial | #prettyhandygirl #DIY #tutorial

Hope you never turn down a $15 mirror again ;-).

PHGFancySign

 

Pin for later!

 

Seaside Theme Bathroom Refresh #LowesCreator | Pretty Handy Girl

You know those projects that you complete 80% of the room and think to yourself, “This is good for now. I’ll do the rest in a day or two.” Yup, the boy’s bathroom was one such 80 percenter. I finally took the time to finish the last 20 percent of this bathroom makeover by giving it a refresh with some paint and new knobs.

The bathroom used to look like this:

Seaside Theme Bathroom Refresh #LowesCreator | Pretty Handy Girl

But, before that, it looked like this:

I find it comical that I took an underwater themed bathroom and gave it a seaside retreat feel. I guess you could say I pulled this big whopper from within the ocean and laid it out on the beach. LOL.

Let’s break it down now. Here’s how to paint a bathroom vanity so it will withstand the abuse of two young boys: Read more

Whitecaps Tybee Island Home Tour | pretty handy girl

First let me say, I truly saved the best for last on this Tybee Mermaid Cottage house tour. Whitecaps is one of the old Officer’s homes and it is dripping with details. From ornate coffered ceilings to gorgeous furniture and antiques. We are excited to share this Tybee Whitecaps Tour.

White Caps Tybee Island House Tour | Pretty Handy Girl

And with a front porch that looks out over the sea, you can not find a more relaxing place to sit and sip coffee.

White Caps Tybee Island House Tour | Pretty Handy Girl

The tour of Whitecaps begins…now!

When you walk up to this beautiful house, it’s impossible to overlook the gorgeous original brick sidewalk leading to the front entrance.

White Caps Tybee Island House Tour | Pretty Handy Girl

Old Reynolds Block bricks pave the path. Each brick is glazed and some are stamped. Beautiful colors make up the varied color palette. A quick internet search led me to the origin of Reynolds Block. They were made by the Tennessee Paving Brick Company of Robbins, Tennessee.

White Caps Tybee Island House Tour | Pretty Handy Girl

Whitecaps was built circa 1897 for the officers during the Spanish-American war.

White Caps Tybee Island House Tour | Pretty Handy Girl

It is situated on the Northern end of Tybee Island in the old Ft. Screven community.

whitecaps-map

The front door opens into the most amazing and breath taking foyer! Read more

Breeze Inn Cottage - Tybee Island | Pretty Handy Girl

I can’t wait to invite you in to tour this adorable Mermaid Cottage on Tybee Island, GA. Breeze Inn is full of charm, color and antiques. This beach cottage is owned by the fabulous fiction author, Mary Kay Andrews. Decorating and furnishing this cottage was a labor of love for Mary Kay. In fact, she told me that many of the things that you see in the cottage were collected for years before she owned Breeze Inn! Check out this Breeze Inn Cottage Tour – we love it!

Mary Kay was sweet enough to let me tour and photograph her cottage. Won’t you come on in and join me?!

Right inside the door is a one-of-a-kind decoupaged dresser with fun fish decorating the drawers! And I am crushing on the amazing shell framed mirror over it. The plank walls add that perfect relaxed coastal feel to this little house.

Breeze Inn Cottage - Tybee Island | Pretty Handy Girl

You enter directly into the cozy and comfortable living room. The dining room is part of the open front room of the cottage. I can imagine playing games at the table with the kids, while keeping up with conversations happening on the couch.

Breeze Inn Cottage - Tybee Island | Pretty Handy Girl

Just off the dining room is the kitchen. The sherbet green walls are fun and funky… Read more

How to Add Panels to Flat Hollow Core Door | Pretty Handy Girl

When my sister brought me on to the Topsail Beach condo renovation, she had a laundry list of DIY projects she wanted me to complete. One of them was dressing up the hollow flat doors with moulding panels. She showed me a pin that led to One Life to Love’s DIY beadboard panel doors. After seeing the photo, I knew it would be a great DIY upgrade to make. But, we decided to use real beadboard (instead of beadboard wallpaper) because it had to hold up to the stress of being a rental.

To Begin:

Start by measuring and marking the doors to determine the size of your panels.

How to Add Panels to Flat Hollow Core Door | Pretty Handy Girl

Draw lines 5″ in from the top and two sides of your door.  Draw the bottom line  6″ up from the bottom. Finally, leave 5″ between the top and bottom panels.

How to Add Panels to Flat Hollow Core Door | Pretty Handy Girl

When marking your doors, use a pencil and level to draw your lines.

How to Add Panels to Flat Hollow Core Door | Pretty Handy Girl

After we had our panel measurements, Caitlin and I headed to Lowe’s. But, she refused to push me in the cart (party pooper!)

DIY Add Molding Panels Flat Door

We pulled some 4′ x 8′ beadboard panels and took them to the lumber cutting area. We gave the Lowe’s employer our measurements and asked him to cut the boards for us. While he cut our beadboard, Caitlin and I gathered the rest of our supplies.

Materials: Read more

Take a tour of this Topsail Beach Condo with a top to bottom makeover including new flooring, paint, and bathroom fixtures.

Topsail Beach Condo RenovationTopsail Beach Condo Renovation

My stepmom, Diane Chamberlain (the famous author), purchased a fixer-upper beach condo in Topsail Beach a few years ago. She hired my sister, Caitlin, to work her interior designer magic on the place. My sister then convinced me to come put in some manual labor. We had a blast renovating this Topsail Beach Condo together and hopefully get the chance to work together again (especially because she lives on the West Coast and we’re on the East.

caitlin-brittany

(Please excuse our sweaty appearance. This was midway through one hot and sweaty day.)

After a few days of sweaty labor, (and some additional work done by her contractor), the beach condo is ready to be enjoyed. Luckily, my stepmom gave us permission to stay in the condo anytime it isn’t rented! That’s a deal I definitely couldn’t turn down!

Without further adieu, I’m giving you an all-access view of the renovation with before and after images.

Welcome to 118!

before-after-door

The Door:

The old door was dried out and had some chipping in the veneer. To save it, I sanded the door down, fixed some of the chipping veneer, painted it, added new numbers, and a door knocker. Now it’s a welcoming door more fitting with the beautiful renovated rooms inside.

My sister and Diane picked out the knocker. Sea turtles are strongly linked with Topsail because of the sea turtle rehab and rescue facility on the island.

Queensgrant-118E-door

The Kitchen:

When you enter the condo, the kitchen is on your right. The old kitchen had dated Formica doors and countertops. None of the cabinet doors were hung straight. And the sink was barely deep enough to wash pans in.

before-kitchen

The cabinet boxes were primed and painted by the contractor and new doors were installed. The appliances are the same, but they look so much better with updated cabinetry around them.

A new sink, faucet, and countertops were installed. To free up space on the counters, a microwave was hung over the stove.

kitchen-after-1

view-from-sink

The kitchen opens up to a bar and the dining area. Before, the wall was broken up by the back of the cabinets. And a 3″ molding strip blocked the view from the sink.

bar-area-before

The bottom three inches of trim were cut off below the cabinets. Sheetrock was installed to cover up the oak and tie it into the rest of the walls in the condo. Caitlin created the clock collage and purchased new bar stools.

bar-kitchen-area

To add more lighting, puck lights were wired and installed beneath the overhead cabinets.

rattan-bar-stools

I painted the “We’re Always on Beach Time” sign for her collage.

were-always-on-beach-time

Dining & Living Areas:

Behind the bar is the dining area. The dated mauve chairs, ugly light fixture, and teal carpet had to go! Just getting rid of the carpet alone was a big change in this condo.

dining-before

The after is simple but elegant. An oval dining table allows for better flow around the table. And the new light fixture is perfect for the elevated decor.

dining-room-table

Can I point out those floors?! They are vinyl planks that look like wood. Update: I can’t recommend this flooring as the planks started separating within a year. We’re not sure exactly what caused the warping, but unfortunately Diane had to have them replaced. Currently, the condo has waterproof laminate that we love, but only time will tell if it wears well.

dining-area-after

The living room was frump-alicious with lumpy sofas and more dated decor.

before-living-room

before-living-room-2

dated-console-table

My sister picked out a beautiful blue and tan coral patterned sofa and loveseat. A coordinating chair and ottoman rounds out the grouping.

living-room-after-2

The coffee table, side tables, and console table were painted to give them a fresh new look.

living-room-after

The oyster shell lamp also got a new coat of paint and a new lampshade. My stepmom wanted to get rid of it, but I’m so glad we kept it. Now we laugh about the lamp everytime we see it, because she likes it.

Topsail-condo-before-after

All the furniture got two coats of Annie Sloan French Linen paint. The console table looks brand new and blends well with the new furniture. Hooray for reusing old!

driftwood-mirror-console-table

Bathrooms:

Unfortunately, some things needed to be retired. Like the dated bathroom fixtures.

small-bathroom-before

It is hard to believe this is the same bathroom! New everything. Well, almost everything, we did save the medicine cabinet and had the contractor gave it a fresh coat of white paint.

small-bathroom-after

The bifold door was discarded and new built-in shelving increased the storage potential for this small shared bathroom.

open-closet-shelves-after

Speaking of dated bathrooms, this was the master bathroom. UGLY!

master-bath

Caitlin’s vision for this bathroom was incredible! I wouldn’t believe it was the same room if I hadn’t witnessed the transformation. New vanity, mirror, lighting, toilet, and a fresh coat of paint.

king-bathroom-after

The condo is filled with photographs by John Pagliuca, Diane’s spouse. They are all photos taken from Topsail.

johns-bucket-shells-picture

Bedrooms:

The master bathroom is accessible only from the master bedroom. The dated art, furniture, and floral bedspread had to go!

king-bedroom-before

master-bed-before

Now, the transformed bedroom is truly fit for a king! New carpeting, furniture, paint and bedding makes a huge difference. You can read the tutorial for how I created that rustic wooden plank headboard.

king-bedroom-after-2

king-bedroom-after

The views from the master bedroom are stunning! The sun comes in the sliding door at day break and you can see the ocean from bed!

sunrise-at-topsail

Down the hall is a bedroom for the kids. The before isn’t too bad.

twin-bedroom-before

Okay, so it was bad, especially because the after is amazing!

surf-city-pier-life-preserver

The mirror was a $15 score at a thrift shop. I transformed it with Miss Mustard Seed Tricycle paint and some wooden scraps.

racing-stripe-mirror

dresser-racing-stripe

New furniture, lamps, carpet, paint and bedding transforms this room into a nautical retreat. The vintage oars aren’t really vintage. I made them myself. You can read the tutorial to create your own vintage painted oars.

twin-bedroom-after2

Caitlin and her friend Michelle painted the stripes on the wall. What a fun way to add some more color to this kids’ room.

twin-bedroom-after-1

One bedroom left! This is the queen bedroom. But, I’m not sure what Queen would appreciate this eclectic floral explosion.

queen-bedroom-before2

My sister picked out a beautiful color scheme in this room. Restful green walls, khaki linens, and accent pillows of beautiful coral pink.

queen-bedroom-after-3 queen-bed-after2

The queen bedroom overlooks the sound. The views from this condo are gorgeous from every window!

queen-bedroom_1-after

My other sister, Alana, is the photographer of the art over the bed. Yes, I know, we are a talented family.

Interior Flat Door Makeover:

I added beadboard and molding to all the hollow core doors to give them a more attractive look. Here’s the easy tutorial for adding molding to a flat panel door.

adding-panels-to-hollow-door

My sister, Caitlin, did an amazing job! For more before and after transformations, be sure to check out her facebook page. Also, if you live in the San Jose area, she can help you with your next design project.

I can’t leave you without a quick view of the ocean from the condo deck.

Topsail Beach Condo Renovation

Wouldn’t you love to vacation at this beautiful beach front condo with your family?

Topsail Beach | Pretty Handy Girl

Unfortunately, this Topsail Beach condo isn’t available to rent, but you can rent Diane’s 2 bedroom condo in the same complex. Both are on the water and both have been renovated.

When you book a rental in one of her condos, you’ll have to read one of her novels, (they are perfect beach reads!) If you haven’t read her books yet, they are phenomenal!

I hope you enjoyed this Topsail Beach Condo Renovation tour. It was so much fun taking this space from dated to dreamy!

PHGFancySign

Source list:

(I’ve included affiliate links for your convenience. I earn a small percentage from a purchase using these links. There is no additional cost to you. You can read more about affiliate links here.)

  • King bedding
  • Queen bedding no longer available.
  • Twin room bedding
  • Wood Plank Vinyl Flooring: Mannington Adura Luxury Plank – Burma Teak (color)

Paint Colors (all are Benjamin Moore)

  • Living Room, Front Halls, Kitchen, Halls = 924 San Mateo Beaches (Eggshell)
  • Master Bedroom = 1633 Brittany Blue (Eggshell)
  • Master Bathroom = 688 Seacliff Heights (Satin)
  • Queen Bedroom (the one off the hall bath) = HC-116 Guilford Green (Eggshell)
  • Hall Bath = 478 Sweet Caroline (Eggshell)
  • Twin = 957 Papaya (Eggshell)
  • Stripes in Twin Room on Headboard Wall Only:  1323 & HC-156 (Satin) **just need a small amount of paint for the stripes
  • All Interior Doors , Doors, Basemolding = Swiss Coffee (Semi Gloss)
  • Kitchen Cabinets= Swiss Coffee (Semi Gloss)

Beach-themed Succulent Garden | Pretty Handy Girl

You like the beach right? Who doesn’t?! Come December I long for the feeling of burying my toes in the warm sand. Bring back those memories by having a Beach-Themed Desktop Succulent Garden nearby. The idea for this garden came as I sat looking at all the shells I’ve collected that were hidden away in the attic. I chose a big conch shell that had few holes and decided it would make a great little planter.

Material:

  • Succulents
  • Conch shell
  • Smaller shells, beach glass or colored glass filler
  • Play sand
  • Potting soil
  • Plant tray

Optional: Hot glue gun, hot glue sticks, felt pads

Instructions: Read more

How to Create a Rustic Wood Headboard for $80 | Pretty Handy Girl

I’m back with more progress on the beach condo. I am really excited to share this tutorial on how to create a rustic wood headboard with you because it caused quite the buzz on Facebook and Instagram. This has to be one of my favorite projects that I completed in my stepmom’s beach condo. (You can see more pictures of the condo renovation on my sister’s interior design business page. Be sure to like her page, she has some great renovations to share.)

My sister, Caitlin, wanted me to make a unique rustic wood headboard for the master bedroom. Her budget was running low so she turned to Pinterest for some ideas and showed me this picture as inspiration.

I followed the link to a retail site where you could purchase the headboard for $2,195! {Cough, choke, gag…this was well out of our budget!} When we tallied the receipts, the lumber and materials to build our own king-sized headboard came in around $90 from Lowe’s! Woot woot!

And best of all, it is a relatively easy project that anyone can do if they have the right power tools.

Materials: Read more

How to Make New Wood Look Old, Weathered and RusticHow to Make New Wood Look Old, Weathered and Rustic

I have a confession to make. All the wood that you saw on my art studio wall is not exactly old or salvaged. Will you forgive me if I share with you the Secret to Make New Wood Look Old, Weathered and Rustic? 

In order to have enough wood, I had to buy some new pine boards off the shelf at Lowe’s. I actually chose furring strip boards because they are already chewed up and imperfect.

But, I also grabbed a few other supplies:

Optional: General Finishes Flat Out Flat Top Coat to protect furniture.

(I’ve included affiliate links for your convenience. I earn a small percentage from a purchase using these links. There is no additional cost to you. You can read more about affiliate links here.)

The Secret of Weathered Boards: 

Old rustic boards are gray and have enhanced grain and plenty of dings and character. Replicating that look can be tricky unless you have the right tools, glazes, and a few tricks up your sleeve.

I wrote another post about aging and antiquing that shares some other techniques, but today I’ll focus solely on making new lumber look old.

Weathered boards have a warm gray color. To create this color I stained the boards with Rustoleum sunbleached. Then wiped off the excess.

Next I added a little Minwax Early American and wiped it off.

The results are the blue-gray weathered look. For more dimension and detail try adding the glazing technique described below.

 

My Secret Rustic Glaze Formula:

UPDATE: Valspar stopped making the products I originally used. I’ve tried a lot of alternatives, and settled on General Finishes Van Dyke and Pitch Black glazes to get the same look. The good news is that you don’t need the additional clear mixing glaze.

There is nothing in this world more beautiful to me than rustic barn wood. Those dark chocolate timbers that look like they’ve been gathering dirt for decades are gorgeous in my eyes.

To fake this look I created a glaze that works wonders when wiped over new lumber.

Mix 2 parts Van Dyke glaze and 1 part Pitch Black glaze.

Secret Formula to Age Wood

Mix thoroughly. The resulting color should be a very dark chocolate color. Adjust your color by adding more VanDyke or more Pitch Black.

Dip your flat brush into the glaze and drag it over the wood. The glaze really accentuates the grain in the wood.

Shake or tap the brush on a stick to give your lumber age freckles.

For more uniform color, brush the glaze over the entire board (don’t forget the ends of the wood.)

Rub the glaze into the wood and wipe off any excess.

Take a look at the difference:

Not bad, did you know this farm crate sign is brand spankin’ new?

I hope I fooled you. Here’s the tutorial for making the farm crate sign.

In the meantime, have fun aging those new boards! I’d love to hear if you try these techniques and how they worked for you.

How to Make New Wood Look Old