Lowe's Spring Makeover Reveal Tour | Pretty Handy Girl

Have you been following all the Lowe’s Spring Makeovers? There were 10 in all, and each one is truly a miraculous transformation. If you remember, there were 10 bloggers who were sent to 10 different areas that were hardest hit by this past winter. We all combed through hundreds of applications to select 10 homeowners who deserved a fantastic makeover. There were challenges; there were lots of Lowe’s heroes who stepped up to help with those challenges; and there were lots of happy tears in the end. You’ll definitely enjoy reading each story and seeing the reveal!

If you’re ready to start the tour, grab a cold drink and head this way—>>> Read more

Lowe's Spring Makeover Reveal | Pretty Handy Girl

**This project and post has been sponsored by Lowe’s Home Improvement. They are a company that works hard to give back to the community. I am honored to have been given the opportunity to make a difference in one family’s life. Thank you, Lowe’s!**

You guys, there is one thing I love more than a beautiful makeover. That one thing is giving a beautiful makeover to a deserving family. Elizabeth and Jörg moved to this home in September. They had no family nearby and didn’t know a lot of people in the area. And then one of the harshest winters on record hit. For this family, the winter brought more than cold and snow. They also dealt with their youngest being hospitalized and a miscarriage.  Elizabeth’s sister, Sarah applied to give Elizabeth and Jörg a landscape makeover. As the oldest of three girls, I know how awful it feels when one of my sisters is hurting. And I know I’d do anything to help them.

That’s why it felt so good to give up four days (two travel and two work days) to give this young family a beautiful makeover.

If you remember, this is what the home looked like the morning we arrived. No landscaping.

front-yard-before

No pathway. No railings. No plants.

barren-landscape-bed-before

No grass or defined play space. In one respect, we had a clean slate, but it left us with a lot to do!

swing-set-before

And, I couldn’t have done it without all these heroes!

volunteers

After two days of non-stop working, we kicked the homeowners out of the yard, sent them inside and told them they couldn’t look at their yard for the last few hours of the makeover. When they came out, their reaction was priceless: Read more

Lowe's Spring Makeover | Pretty Handy Girl

I’m super amped to give you an update on the Lowe’s Spring Makeover plans. If you recall, Lowe’s was partnering with these bloggers heroes to come to the rescue of a few homeowners:

All Things G&D | Beneath My Heart | Brooklyn Limestone | City Farmhouse | DIY Playbook | The Golden Sycamore | Home Stories A to Z  |Just A GirlLiz Marie Blog | Our Fifth House | Pretty Handy Girl  and Lowe’s Home Improvement Volunteers!

We received several applications from these cities that were deemed the top ten hardest hit by the winter of 2014:

  • Boston, MA
  • Buffalo, New York
  • Detroit, Michigan
  • Hartford, Connecticut
  • Louisville, Kentucky
  • Nashville, Tennessee
  • Newark, New Jersey
  • New York City
  • Portland, Maine
  • Providence, Rhode Island

I was assigned to one city. Wading through all the applications was tough, but ultimately one family stood out.

Lowe's Spring Makeover | Pretty Handy Girl

This sweet family recently moved to the Northeast and was hit by one of the most brutal winters on record. If the weather wasn’t enough to freeze their emotions, having one of their little toddlers hospitalized and losing a loved one certainly crushed their spirits.

When the snow finally melted they were left with this: Read more

Metallic Color Block Canisters | Pretty Handy Girl

I’m back with another easy Lowe’s Creative Idea this month. When you get tired of your cobalt blue canisters you can easily spray paint them with a metallic color block pattern. That’s exactly what I decided to do with my thrift store canisters.

I’ve been on a major mission to purge things I no longer use or love from my house. I have almost completely filled our dining room with things to donate. I had contemplated donating my cobalt kitchen canisters because the color wasn’t making me happy anymore. But, then I realized that I could give them an entirely new look with some spray paint.

Materials:

Instructions:

Remove the lids, the metal ring, and spoons from your canisters.

Metallic Color Block Canisters | Pretty Handy Girl
(Wood plank photo backdrop courtesy of Leen the Graphics Queen.)

Use a sanding block to lightly rough up the surface of the canisters. Wipe all the sanding dust off with a damp rag.

Metallic Color Block Canisters | Pretty Handy Girl

Spray the outside and base of the canisters with Valspar Premium Primer. Read more

Wood Block Floating Picture Frames | Pretty Handy Girl

We are days away from Christmas and I’m sure there is someone on your list that you just can’t figure out what to get for them. I have the perfect solution! Make them a wood block floating picture frame using scrap 2×4″ lumber and plexiglass.

If you don’t have scrap 2×4’s lying around, you can purchase a 2x4x8 foot stud for less than $4! You could make 16 photo frames out of that one board! (Granted, you’ll need to buy the plexiglass for each.)

Materials:

  • 2 – 2 x 4s (cut to 6″ lengths)
  • 4 – 6″ x 9″ pieces of plexiglass (3/32″ thickness)
  • Ipswich Pine Stain
  • gel stain or Minwax Express color
  • small detail paint brush
  • pencil or pen
  • photos
  • tape
  • rag
  • optional: scrapbook paper, double stick tape

Tools:

Instructions:

Set your table saw to a 10 degree bevel.

Wood Block Floating Picture Frames | Pretty Handy Girl

Set the saw blade to a depth halfway through your block (about 7/8″ deep.) Set the fence to 2″ from the blade.

Wood Block Floating Picture Frames | Pretty Handy Girl

Use your GRR-RIPPER to safely guide the 2×4 over the saw blade. Check to see if two pieces of plexiglass will fit in the groove created by the saw blade.

Wood Block Floating Picture Frames | Pretty Handy Girl

If not, nudge the fence over slightly and make a second pass over the blade. Check to see if the plexiglass will fit now. If not, repeat the process until they fit snugly. Read more

Mosaic Tile Coasters | Pretty Handy Girl

Want an easy and inexpensive gift idea to give out as a hostess gift for those upcoming holiday parties? How about Mosaic Tile Coasters? They are quick and easy to make. Last month, for my Lowe’s Creative Idea I created a unique lamp shade with mosaic glass tile. I had some leftover sheets and decided to make these coasters with the leftovers. Follow along to learn how to make another great Lowe’s Creative Idea.

Materials:

Mosaic Tile Coasters | Pretty Handy Girl

Instructions:

Begin by cutting your mosaic tile sheet into coaster size squares.

Mosaic Tile Coasters | Pretty Handy Girl

Trim off any excess mesh. Read more

DIY Chalkboard Memo Board (4th grade project) | Pretty Handy Girl

Before the end of the school year a REALLY GOOD friend of mine asked if I would give a talk in her daughter’s class about what I do for a living. I hemmed and hawed because I rarely have the free time. But, the main reason I was hesitant was because I didn’t know how to talk to 4th graders about what I do. Saying I’m a blogger is something that is hard for me to vocalize. “I write a blog” sounds simple and easy. But, in actuality, I do so many other things to make this blog a reality. Just a few of my job descriptions are: writer, photographer, builder, crafter, teacher, photo editor, business woman, manager, social media coordinator, graphic designer, web designer and all around handy girl! How could I explain all of that to the students?

Suddenly, an idea hit me! I would waltz into that classroom and use my platform to break down the stereotypes about women and handy people within 30 minutes (or less!) Then I’d empower the 4th grade students by letting them build their own chalkboard memo board AND use a power tool! Lofty goals, but I felt sure I could do it. Little did I know that the students wouldn’t be the only one empowered.

The quiz:

I started out by talking to the kids about what a handy person is. They shared terms that fit the definition of a handy person: fixes things, builder, carpenter, plumber, woodworker, and home improvement specialist. Then I showed them a slide presentation and gave the kids a quiz asking them to tell me which of these people are handy:

DIY Chalkboard Memo Board (4th grade project) | Pretty Handy Girl

I showed them one picture at a time and as expected, they got all of the answers wrong.

The answers: Read more

DIY Button Pendant Light |Pretty Handy Girl

While I was house touring on Tybee Island and having  fun antique and salvage shopping in Savannah, I spied some bare lamp shade frame hanging lights. They immediately inspired me to design a DIY Button Pendant Light for over my bedside table in our master bedroom. Part of the desire was born out of the necessity to have more space on my bedside because the table actually doubles as my makeup vanity.

DIY Button Pendant Light | Pretty Handy Girl

Making a Button Pendant Light is an easy DIY project, but you’ll need some patience while threading the buttons. I’ll also show you how to wire a lamp socket and lamp plug! Ready to get started?

(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.)

Materials:

DIY Button Pendant Light |Pretty Handy Girl

Optional:

Instructions: Read more

Faux Weathered Gray Wood Grain Tutorial | Pretty Handy Girl

Do you love the Restoration Hardware tables that have that beautiful gray (driftwood-like) weathered wood? Me too. But, I can’t justify spending thousands of dollars on their furniture. Instead, I found a Craig’s List pedestal table that had the right shape and size for our kitchen. It was a cherry veneer finish, but after some paint you’d never know!

Faux Weathered Gray Wood Grain Tutorial | Pretty Handy Girl

And then, I created my own Faux Weathered Gray Wood Grain top. All you need are some Valspar paint samples, some wood grain tools and a dry brush to achieve this look.

Ready to get started?

Faux Finish Weathered Wood Grain Materials:

(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.)

Faux Weathered Gray Wood Grain Tutorial | Pretty Handy Girl

Faux Finish Weathered Wood Grain Base Coat and Glazes:

Faux Weathered Gray Wood Grain Tutorial | Pretty Handy Girl

Before you begin creating your wood grain, you should paint your surface with Valspar Woodrow Wilson Putty and allow it to dry.

Faux Weathered Gray Wood Grain Tutorial | Pretty Handy Girl

If you are painting furniture, lightly sand the piece. And be sure to use Valspar Paint + Primer in one. This will allow you to paint directly onto the furniture and skip the primer. Read more

Radiant Orchid Vases from Recycled Cans & Jars | #upcycling | Pretty Handy Girl

There I was digging things out of the recycling bin again. Pretty Handsome Guy gave me a raised eyebrow, but he knew better than to question my motives. I had that idea bulb flashing over my head, and I was ready to transform some jars and tins. With Springtime just around the corner, it was time to force a little vibrant color into our home. I introduce to you the cheapest way to bring Radiant Orchid color into your décor! If you have recycled jars and tins, you are set!

(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.)

Materials: 

Radiant Orchid Vases from Recycled Cans & Jars | #upcycling | Pretty Handy Girl

Optional: Gold vinyl stripes or washi tape

Instructions:

Clean out your jars, bottles or tins.

Coat the exterior of your recycled vessel with primer. Allow to dry.

Radiant Orchid Vases from Recycled Cans & Jars | #upcycling | Pretty Handy Girl

Paint each bottle and tin with radiant orchid paint. Allow to dry. You might need two coats depending on the coverage. Read more