Beef Up Door and Window Casing with Back Band | Pretty Handy Girl

Want an easy way to add more architectural interest to your standard colonial door and window framing? Adding an extra piece of moulding, called back band, can add that extra boost of architectural interest.

Add Architectural Interest to Casing | Pretty Handy Girl

And the good news is that you can do this to your existing trim moulding. No need to remove or start fresh! The only thing you will need is paint on hand to paint the moulding after you BEEF it UP! In essence, We’re gonna PUMP it UP!

Materials:

  • Back band moulding
  • Finish nailer
  • 2″ finish nails
  • Caulk
  • Paint
  • Miter saw or  hand saw with miter box

Instructions:

There’s really not much to this tutorial. Line up the back band against your existing door or window frame. Measure or mark the back band where you need to cut your miter. Read more

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

Thank you for all the kind comments about my boys’ bathroom. One of my favorite changes in the room was the addition of the built-in decorative shelf. It was fairly easy to build and install. I used a router to give the shelf a decorative edge, but it isn’t necessary if you don’t have a router (or are afraid to use one.)

Materials:

  • 1x 8″ Pine board (cut to length for your shelf)
  • 2 Wooden shelf brackets (with included mounting screw)
  • Sandpaper
  • Construction adhesive
  • Finish nails or nailgun
  • Hammer
  • Primer
  • Paint
  • Brush
  • Router and bit (optional)

Instructions:

Cut your shelf board down to size. If you want to add some pizzazz, use a router to give your shelf a decorative edge.

Sand any rough edges down with sandpaper.

Set the shelf aside and get the shelf brackets. Line up the top of the shelf bracket with the top of the board and batten moulding.

Insert the mounting screw into your shelf bracket and press it into the board and batten where you wish to install the shelf.

Remove the screw and drive it into the board and batten where you left the mark. Slip the bracket over the screw. Adjust the depth of the screw until the bracket fits snug against the board and batten.

Squeeze some construction glue onto the back of the bracket and then slip it back onto the screw. Insert two finish nails through the bracket and into the board to further secure the bracket.

Repeat the installation steps for the other bracket. Lay the shelf on top to check the fit. Little gaps are okay because you can always caulk them later.

Remove the shelf. Squeeze a bead of construction glue on top of the board and then reposition the shelf on top of the board and shelf brackets.

Nail finish nails through the top of the shelf and into the board and the top of the shelf brackets.

Your shelf is now attached.

If you want, you can add decorative moulding underneath your shelf at the top of the board. I cut the edge of the decorative moulding at a 30 degree angle.

The moulding was cut at a straight 90 degree angle between the two brackets.

Caulk, prime and paint your shelf. Then wait about 3 days before resting anything on the shelf to avoid it sticking to the newly painted shelf.

But, then you need to put some pretties on that shelf and admire your handywork!

And now the moment that you have all been waiting for! We have a winner of the MirrorMate giveaway! I really wish I had more than one. But, don’t forget you can still get a 10% discount. Simply use: PHGBlog at checkout. Hurry because it expires on Sept. 27th 2011.

Let’s give a big “Congratulations!” to Diana C. who was chosen at random to win the MirrorMate frame credit!


Diana said: “What a great and easy way to update a bathroom mirror! I liked MirrorMate on FB … and my favorite frame is the simple, yet elegant look of the Chelsea Espresso frame!” Nice choice Diana, I hope you send me before and after pictures of your mirror.

Ta ta for now, I’ll be back soon with another fabulous giveaway!



When I last showed you my boy’s bathroom, it looked like this:

Nemo and Dory would have enjoyed life living in the kids’ bathroom. But, alas, I was serenaded by a beautiful new mirror (actually a new MirrorMate frame.) And so I set to work helping this bathroom grow up.

Here is that beautiful temptress, Ms. Gramercy Martini. Isn’t she lovely.

With curves and details like that, I had to build board and batten moulding that would match her beauty.

And, what bathroom couldn’t use a sweet spot to display some beautiful flowers? I really like this built in shelf, it was really easy to construct it.

The wall color is Blue Slate by Benjamin Moore. And I used the new bath & spa Aura paint which has a matte finish! I have yet to clean it yet, but I’ll let you know how it does.

These two starfish friends are happy to perch on the 3″ deep moulding ledge. Yes, I expect them to make a suicidal dive one day, but my boys haven’t bothered them yet.


Finding just the “right” shower curtain was a little challenging. I would have loved to put in a floral or feminine curtain, but I have to respect that there are two little men that will be using this bathroom 95% of the time.

I am sooo glad I ditched the hollywood strip light for these beauties:


Just a close up view of the battens where they meet the floor. Now wouldn’t that have looked weird if I had left the baseboard tiles there?


Here is a better view of the vanity, new light fixture and the MirrorMate frame.

I have one more project for the empty wall. I took down the old chrome towel bar, but I have a fantastic idea for a new one. You’ll just have to wait and see what I came up with. In the meantime, the hooks on the door work well for hanging towels up.

So, go ahead let me know what you think! Do you miss the Nemo room? Or are you loving the grown up beach retreat? And am I crazy for making this bathroom look this good for my 5 & 7 year old boys? By the way, Pretty Handsome Son #1 tried to convince me that the bathroom would look better with black and pink stripes! I am seriously going to have to paint his closet like that because he has been asking for the same color scheme for 2 years now!

Board & Batten moulding is very popular right now. And why not? It is easy to work with and looks great (after it is painted)! If you remember, I used board and batten in my  my son’s closet turned reading nook last year.

I decided to create a similar look in the boys’ bathroom. Only this time I wanted to round the edges of the battens for more visual interest. I’m warning you now, this tutorial is a bit photo intensive. But, how else would I give you a step-by-step tutorial?

I started by purchasing my lumber at Lowe’s. Did you know you can buy cheap furring strips for your battens? It will save you money. Especially if you don’t mind sifting through the stacks to find the straighter boards and sanding the face of your boards after cutting them. I bought 1x4x8 boards for the battens. And 1x3x8 boards for the upper ledge. I also purchased quarter round moulding and decorative moulding for underneath the upper ledge.

Removing Baseboard Tiles:

The bathroom had baseboard tiles that had to be removed. I grabbed a few tools and made quick work of removing them. The ear muffs and safety glasses were definitely a must!

Score the edges of the tile with a utility knife.

Hammer a flat pry bar behind the tiles.

Remove each tile one at a time.


Take some time to patch any holes that are in your wall. You can view a tutorial on patching drywall HERE. I needed my walls to be as smooth as possible since I wasn’t going to add board behind the battens.

Installing Board and Batten Moulding:

Mark the height where you want the top of your moulding to be. I used 5′ as the height, but then ended up lining up the bottom of my boards on the 5′ mark. So, for the 8′ ceiling room, the top of my moulding was at 65″. Use a level mark as a guide line across the width of your room.

Next measure the widths of the sections that your horizontal boards will be attached to.

Cut your boards to size.

Test fit your boards.

I cut the board that butted up to my mirror at a 30 degree bevel.

Once you have cut all the boards and they fit. Sand down the face and edges.

A nail gun and compressor are not a necessity, but they do make the job a lot easier! Otherwise, you will be doing a lot of hammering and nailing while holding boards in place.

I used the compressor at 110psi, which worked well for the 1″ pine boards. I used 2″ nails for the boards and battens and 1.5″ nails for the quarter round.

Be sure to wear your safety gear. The compressor is LOUD and no need to risk your eyesight. I know, you are jealous of how attractive I look in my safety gear (not!)

For the horizontal top boards, I added some construction adhesive. This is not 100% necessary unless you have monkeys for children. And I do, so the extra adhesive seemed like a good idea.

Press the board onto the wall.

Shoot several 2″ nails into the moulding to hold it in place. Be sure to angle your nails to make it more secure.

That board shouldn’t go anywhere now!



Repeat the same steps for the baseboard boards (minus the construction adhesive.)

Next, measure the vertical distance between the top and baseboard battens. Be sure to measure at the exact location that a vertical batten will go. I’m sure your heights will vary.

Cut all your vertical boards and sand them down.

When you are figuring out the spacing, be sure to take into account if you will be adding a towel bar or other fixtures to the wall. My old towel bar was 24″ wide, so I made sure to space the battens to accommodate the towel bar.

While installing the battens you may run into a few inconveniences. Like, a toilet or something that can’t be moved. To deal with the toilet, I cut a piece of cardstock the same width as my batten. Then I slid it behind the toilet and scribed around the edge of the toilet.

Then I cut along my line and transferred the line to my batten.



Use a jigsaw to cut out the scribed profile (I tried to use my Dremel Trio to cut out the small section, but it failed miserably. I think the Trio is best used for thin stock like the back of a bookcase.)


Then you can install your batten around the “inconvenient” object.

By now your room should resemble something like this:

Installing Quarter Round Moulding:

Now comes the step that requires a little more precision. Cutting the quarter round moulding can be a little tricky, but don’t fear I know you can handle it. Remember the old carpenter’s adage, “Measure twice, cut once.”

Well, I admit it, I forgot! Ugh. Even I can make mistakes, so don’t be afraid to mess up once in a while. We all learn from our mistakes:

You will need to meaure the width and heights of the rectangle between your battens. Be precise for better accuracy and less caulk later!

Set your miter saw at a 45 degree angle.






This is what it should look like. The saw should be straight up and down at a 90 degree angle from the saw stand (in other words, no bevel cut).

 


Cut your quarter round so that the longest point on the moulding equals the measurement you took from the rectangle. You may have to face the “round” edge in towards the fence for some cuts. And it might take a few cuts to figure out the angles. But, I know you can do it. Once you have all your quarter round cut and dry fit, you can proceed with the install.

Remember those “inconvenient” objects. End your quarter round right before the toilet.

Add a 30 degree angle when butting up to objects like light switch covers and outlets.

Load the 1.5″ trim nails into your nail gun. Aim your nail gun into the quarter round at an angle so the nail ends up going through the quarter round and into the battens.


Hey, you are about 80% of the way done with installing the moulding!

Installing the top ledge and decorative trim moulding:

Cut the top ledges to size and sand them down. It is a good idea to round any exposed corners with the sander. This will undoubtedly prevent future dents to the head.

Lay the ledge boards on top of the upper battens. If your walls are uneven, your ledge will likely look like this.

No biggie. Grab your grade school compass. And set the two arms to the width of the widest gap. Then drag your compass along the ledge and the wall.

Get out your trusty jigsaw again and cut off that scribed line (have I told you how much I love my Porter Cable Jigsaw?! It pays to buy good quality power tools.)

Ahhh, much better. Any smaller gaps will be filled in with caulk later.

Nail the ledge into the batten below it. You can use construction glue for extra stability. (Yes, it is monkey protection for us.)

My favorite part of the moulding project is adding a little extra “bling”. I chose this decorative moulding to sit below the ledge and to give it extra support (again I have monkeys!)

Don’t forget to cut a 30 degree angle wherever you cut a batten at that angle.

Nail the decorative moulding onto the batten just below the ledge.

Now doesn’t that look beautiful?!

Fixing a few nail problems:

Remember how I said I make mistakes too? Well, here are two easy mistakes to fix when using a nail gun. When the nail doesn’t go all the way in (this usually happens if you don’t keep pressure on the gun when you squeeze the trigger), simply use a hammer and a nail set to hammer it into the wood.

Occasionally a nail may hit something when entering and end up popping out. Grab the end of the nail and pull it all the way through the wood. You may take some wood with it, but you can patch it with wood putty.


I’ll be back to show you how to caulk and paint this beautiful moulding! And then the final reveal of my Boys’ Fishy to Fabulous Bathroom! Finally, a bonus post on creating a branch towel bar.

 

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