How to Refinish Rusted & Scratched Appliances | Pretty Handy Girl

Do you have an appliance that has scratches and/or rust spots? Unfortunately over time the rust will get worse if you don’t deal with it.

How to Refinish Rusted & Scratched Appliances | Pretty Handy Girl

Today I want to show you how to refinish scratched and rusted appliances so you can extend the life of your appliances and make them look almost like new again.

How to Refinish Rusted & Scratched Appliances | Pretty Handy Girl

Before you get ready to tackle this project, you’ll need to order spray paint specifically for your appliance. If your brand doesn’t carry a touch up spray paint you can try the universal spray paint by Rustoleum. Or buy the liquid touch up paint and only paint the rust spots.

Be aware that all white paint is not the same color. However,  typically the colors are usually the same within a specific brand. (i.e. All Whirlpool white appliances are painted with the same white.)

How to Refinish Rusted & Scratched Appliances | Pretty Handy Girl

Materials:

Instructions:

Begin by sanding any rust spots down to the metal. Sand the entire surface lightly to minimize scratches.

How to Refinish Rusted & Scratched Appliances | Pretty Handy Girl

Fold the sandpaper in half to get into grooves and tight spots.

How to Refinish Rusted & Scratched Appliances | Pretty Handy Girl

Vacuum up any sanding dust and dirt.

How to Refinish Rusted & Scratched Appliances | Pretty Handy Girl

Use a clean damp cloth to wipe any additional dust off your appliance.

How to Refinish Rusted & Scratched Appliances | Pretty Handy Girl

If you can drag your appliance outside, that’s the best way to spray paint it. But, if you can’t, you can mask off an area around your appliance with cardboard and newspaper. You can also use saran wrap to mask off tricky areas.

How to Refinish Rusted & Scratched Appliances | Pretty Handy Girl

If you are working inside, crack a window and open a door. Use a fan to pull air away from your work area. Send the kids and pets outside if you are painting indoors.

How to Refinish Rusted & Scratched Appliances | Pretty Handy Girl

Put the respirator mask on. Spray the appliance with the spray paint. Use back and forth strokes that extend off the appliance and onto the masked area. If you stop at the edge you’ll have puddles of paint. A light coat is all you need for your first coat. Read more

It occurred to me the other day that many woodworking projects may deter people simply because they don’t have power tools or they don’t know how to use them yet. For that reason, I created this tutorial to help you Build a Vintage Produce Crate Centerpiece using no power tools!
How to Build a Rustic Crate Centerpiece (No Power Tools Needed!) #DIYCourage | Pretty Handy Girl

Build a Vintage Produce Crate Centerpiece – No Power Tools!

Many people are turned off by DIY projects because they fear using a power tool. Although I can tell you, I know you can learn how to use power tools safely, let’s go ahead and skip them today so you can get your hands busy creating a beautiful crate. This little vintage produce crate can be used anywhere in your house on display. Use it as a centerpiece, or in the office to hold files or utensils, or fill it with flowers or small items to give as a gift.

Regardless of how you use this little vintage crate, you’re going to love making it.

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.)

How to Build a Rustic Crate Centerpiece (No Power Tools Needed!) #DIYCourage | Pretty Handy Girl

Optional: 

Instructions:

I happen to stumble across this vintage produce crate and vintage bottles that a neighbor was giving away. If you don’t have a neighbor who periodically gives away vintage produce crates, you can ask your local grocery store for produce crates you can salvage. Or you can purchase a produce crate on Amazon. Or look for thin slats at the hardware store to use for this crate. (Then you can learn how to fake the Aged Wood Look yourself.)

How to Build a Rustic Crate Centerpiece (No Power Tools Needed!) #DIYCourage | Pretty Handy Girl

The crate I had was very rustic. So rustic, that I was able to pull the bottom slats off the crate with my bare hands. (In hindsight, I should have been wearing my gloves to avoid splinters.)

How to Build a Rustic Crate Centerpiece (No Power Tools Needed!) #DIYCourage | Pretty Handy Girl

If you want to spare your hands, use a handsaw to remove the slats. Set them aside for use later.

How to Build a Rustic Crate Centerpiece (No Power Tools Needed!) #DIYCourage | Pretty Handy Girl

After removing the slats, pry up the nails with a prybar. Be sure to wear gloves to protect your hands. Stubborn nails can usually be wiggled out with the needle-nosed pliers.

How to Build a Rustic Crate Centerpiece (No Power Tools Needed!) #DIYCourage | Pretty Handy Girl

Any nails that are too rusty to remove can be hammered into the wood.

How to Build a Rustic Crate Centerpiece (No Power Tools Needed!) #DIYCourage | Pretty Handy Girl

Align the front and back of the produce crate with the bottles or vases you will display in your crate. Or use 5″ as a general measurement from the outside front to outside back. Measure the distance to cut your sides, or just lay one of the slats next to the front and back and mark where to cut it with a pencil.

How to Build a Rustic Crate Centerpiece (No Power Tools Needed!) #DIYCourage | Pretty Handy Girl

Cut down the salvaged slats to 5″ widths (or your own bottle measurement). Using a miter box will help keep your cuts square.

How to Build a Rustic Crate Centerpiece (No Power Tools Needed!) #DIYCourage | Pretty Handy Girl

Squeeze wood glue onto the bottom of the produce crate front and back pieces.

How to Build a Rustic Crate Centerpiece (No Power Tools Needed!) #DIYCourage | Pretty Handy Girl

Set one of the 5″ slats into the glue and staple the slat into the crate front and back. Three staples per side should hold the slat while the glue dries. If the slat doesn’t lie flush with the crate, you might need to clamp the slat while the glue dries.

How to Build a Rustic Crate Centerpiece (No Power Tools Needed!) #DIYCourage | Pretty Handy Girl

Repeat for the opposite side by stapling the slat to the bottom. Continue working toward the center of your crate.

How to Build a Rustic Crate Centerpiece (No Power Tools Needed!) #DIYCourage | Pretty Handy Girl

Attach one slat to the sides of the crate with wood glue and staples.

How to Build a Rustic Crate Centerpiece (No Power Tools Needed!) #DIYCourage | Pretty Handy Girl

You’ll notice I left spaces between the slats for that vintage produce crate look. If you want, you can butt the slats tight up against one another. Clamp your crate as the wood glue dries.

If you have a true vintage produce crate, you might need to secure what is left of the label. Gently wipe the crate and label with a damp rag.

How to Build a Rustic Crate Centerpiece (No Power Tools Needed!) #DIYCourage | Pretty Handy Girl

Apply a coating of Mod Podge to the underside of any parts of the label that are peeling up. Then apply a second coat of mod podge over the entire label to seal it to the crate.

How to Build a Rustic Crate Centerpiece (No Power Tools Needed!) #DIYCourage | Pretty Handy Girl

When the crate is dry, load it up with vintage bottles filled with fresh flowers.

How to Build a Rustic Crate Centerpiece (No Power Tools Needed!) #DIYCourage | Pretty Handy Girl

Place it on your table and invite a friend for lunch.

How to Build a Rustic Crate Centerpiece (No Power Tools Needed!) #DIYCourage | Pretty Handy Girl

The conversation will surely turn to your Rustic Produce Crate Centerpiece you made yourself.

How to Build a Rustic Crate Centerpiece (No Power Tools Needed!) #DIYCourage | Pretty Handy Girl

Which you can proudly say you made…by hand…without any power tools.

How to Build a Rustic Crate Centerpiece (No Power Tools Needed!) #DIYCourage | Pretty Handy Girl

Want to know where I got my shirt? The Duluth Trading Company Crosscut Performance Flannel Shirt is super comfortable. It’s like wearing your PJs all day. The flexible gussets in the back give you more freedom of movement while working. FYI, the crosscut flannel shirt is on clearance right now. If you don’t see the color you want, check back in early fall to snag your favorites (but don’t wait, they go fast.)

How to Build a Rustic Crate Centerpiece (No Power Tools Needed!) #DIYCourage | Pretty Handy Girl

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Build a Vintage Produce Crate Centerpiece using no power tools whatsoever! | Pretty Handy Girl #DIY #rusticcrate #DIYcrate

Family Organization Door | Pretty Handy Girl

It’s hard to stay organized when you are a DIY blogger, Mom, wife, cook, cleaner, taxi driver, and a student (taking evening classes for the general contractor exam.) I’ll be the first to admit that I’ve dropped a few balls in this massive juggling act. But, I strive to improve and part of that effort involved hanging a Family Organization Center Door next to the refrigerator.  Did you know there was such a thing? Ha, me either until I saw this half window door at our local Habitat ReStore.

Family Organization Door | Pretty Handy Girl

A vision of a place to plan meals, keep track of chores and keep reminders became clear in my head when I first saw it. Want to see how I took this old door and turned it into a family organization center? Hang around for a few minutes to find out.

Materials:
(contains some affiliate links)

Optional:

Instructions:

After finding a door for your organization center, you may need to trim down the sides to fit your space. I had to trim an inch off each side of my door to fit on the side of our refrigerator cabinet. Use a circular saw to trim the door. Using a Kreg Rip Cut will help keep the saw straight.

Family Organization Door | Pretty Handy Girl

For extra stability, you may want to add a caster on the bottom of the door (opposite the hinge side). This is not necessary, but will add extra support.

Family Organization Door | Pretty Handy Girl

Cut scraps of coax cable to fit into the tops of the windows. Read more

Quick Kitchen Cart Makeover with BB Frösh Chalk Paint Powder

It seems I have a penchant for painting my late grandmother’s old furniture. You may remember the coffee table I wrote on of her’s. This kitchen cart was Grandma’s, but it had seen better days. It has been hanging out in my Dad’s kitchen for years now. My sister Caitlin decided to rope me into giving this kitchen cart a quick makeover over the holidays.

Quick Kitchen Cart Makeover with BB Frösh Chalk Paint Powder

It actually turned into the perfect opportunity to try BB Frösch Chalk Paint Powder. The powder is mixed with water first and then any flat latex paint to create a smooth, durable chalk paint that can be painted directly over any surface regardless of whether it is bare wood, metal, or previously painted. Primer is not needed! For a soft durable finish, you can add a coat of BB Frösch Clear Wax.

Quick Kitchen Cart Makeover with BB Frösh Chalk Paint Powder

I can’t wait to show you how this chalk powder works and how quickly you can give furniture a makeover.

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.)

Quick Kitchen Cart Makeover with BB Frösh Chalk Paint Powder

Optional (for butcher block top):

 

Instructions:

Begin by wiping off your kitchen cart with the damp rag.

Quick Kitchen Cart Makeover with BB Frösh Chalk Paint Powder

To remove the butcher block top, turn the cart upside down and remove the screws holding the top in place.

Lightly sand the rest of the cart with a sanding block. It helps to enlist the help of one adorable niece for this step. 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

12 DIY Home Storage Tutorials | Pretty Handy Girl

It’s January and you know what that means! Time to clean and purge the house of all the excess stuff. Last year I was too busy with projects to purge, so this year I’m taking advantage of some warmer days to clean out our home. I hope you’ll excuse me while I’m in clutter busting HELL mode. In the meantime you might enjoy these 12 DIY Storage Projects to help you organize your home (and hide clutter.)

mudroom_shoe_storage_bench
Make a Coat Rack from an Old Door
 and Make a Shoe Storage Bench with Kitchen Cabinets

full_flow_wall_above_washerLaundry Room Storage using Flow Wall 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

31 Days of Handy Home Fixes | Pretty Handy Girl

Take out the papers  and the trash…ummm take out the trash?

foot_on_trashcan

Grrr, don’t you hate when the trash bag gets stuck in the trash can? No worries, I have an easy fix that will make taking out the trash a much easier chore. It may sound a little crazy, but it involves drilling holes.

Day 16: Put Holes in Your Trash Can

To release the suction created by a full trash bag in the trashcan you need to add some air holes. If you put the holes about an inch up from the base you won’t risk any drips on the floor if the bag leaks.

Simply drill three to four air holes into the bottom of your trash can.

drill_holes_in_trash_can

Now you can take out the papers and the trash or you don’t get no spending cash. Yakkety Yak, don’t talk back.

before_after_trashcan

This year we’ve added several chores for the kids to handle. Taking out the trash and recycling is one of their responsibilities. I’m curious, what chores do your kids have?

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how to remove a trash bag that gets stuck in trash can

I’m participating in Nester’s 31 Days Challenge. Check out all the other bloggers who are participating!

31 Day Writing Challenge

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Rustic IKEA Hack Cabinet Transformation | Pretty Handy Girl

Rustic is not usually a word used to describe IKEA. IKEA is better know for their modern furniture, simple lines, meatballs and funny Swedish words. Today I’m going to change how you perceive IKEA furniture forever! Are you ready for this? Well, hang onto your hästes (Swedish for horses) because you’re going to see a transformation nothing short of amazing! You too can customize your plain jane furniture by adding legs and cladding the exterior with reclaimed picket fence wood.

This tale starts with a hunter green stained IKEA storage chest that I bought for our first apartment and stained myself (can you tell what decade it was? Hint: hunter green, honey pine, throw some burgundy in there and I’m sure you’ll be guessing no more.) It moved from room to room each time we settled into a new home. But, it never really fit in.

ikea chest in guest room

The cabinet was short and not very deep. Plus, it bore the mark of the popular 90’s hunter green. It was ugly. Why didn’t I get rid of it years ago? Maybe I was attached to it because it was the first piece of furniture I ever stained myself. And it brought back fond memories of calling the fire department because I smelled gas. Turns out you aren’t supposed to use an oil-based stain indoors, especially if you have a gas stove. Lesson learned.

Rustic IKEA Hack Cabinet Transformation | Pretty Handy Girl

Fast forward two decades and it’s still hanging around. The other day as I was lamented the fact that our foyer is too small to fit a cute dresser, I found myself looking at this sad little IKEA chest. I picked it up and put it in our foyer. The fit was perfect in the small space behind the front door! But, it was short and let’s not mention the hunter green again. Plus, it just wasn’t cute. And it doesn’t reflect my warm and weathered style. But, you know me, I wasn’t deterred.

I did some mental gymnastics and began to hatch a plan to create a marriage that would last longer than two decades.

Old picket fence pieces

It began with some pieces of old picket fence that I found by a dumpster. They were perfectly chippy and rustic! Luckily the 3M Lead Check results were perfectly negative. I carefully took the fence apart and removed all the nails.

Lead check picket fence paint

Ready to see how I convinced the two polar opposites that they belonged together — rustic and modern — to create a match made in heaven? Let’s explore this couples’ counseling further:

Read more

Updating a Knotty Pine Nightstand | Pretty Handy Girl

The best way to give your room a makeover on a budget is if you can use your existing furniture. Notice that I didn’t say using it “as is”. Heck no! Update your solid furniture by adding moulding, paint and new feet!

Updating a Knotty Pine Nightstand | Pretty Handy Girl
(Pretty Handy Dog is already staking his claim on his preferred spot on the new bed.)

When I decided to build our new bed, I wanted to use our existing nightstand and vanity to save money. But, the nightstand was a little too short for the new bed height. By adding new feet and painting it the same color as our new bed, I was able to give the knotty pine nightstand a second life.

(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:

Optional:

Instructions:

Start with a solid night stand. She may have some dated curves, but that’s nothing a little baseboard moulding can’t fix!

Updating a Knotty Pine Nightstand | Pretty Handy Girl

Remove the drawers. Clean out any dust bunnies and lost love letters out of the back.

Updating a Knotty Pine Nightstand | Pretty Handy Girl

Cut an interior facing 45 degree angle into one end of the baseboard moulding. Line up the bevel against one end of the front of the nightstand. Mark the opposite corner of the base where you need to cut. Read more