Wednesday, February 8, 2017

From Log Bunk Bed to Rustic Garden Benches

This rustic garden bench began life as a bunkbed for my boys,
way back in the 1990s.

Most recently, it lived in my grandkids' room.
Until last summer when we built a Triple Bunk Bed
to accommodate the seven (and counting) grands.

I tried to sell it, even give it away, but it was pretty big
and heavy, so no takers.
So, I did what I usually do with headboards that I
don't want any more, I made a bench.
Two benches, in fact.

There were 2 taller headboards and 2 smaller ones,
perfect for 2 benches.

First thing we did was cut the smaller ones in half.

They would be just right for the sides of the benches.

Which was the next step, attaching them to the back.

To do this, we routed a hole to fit in a long carriage bolt.

Next, we needed a seat.
We wanted to use some pine 1x1s that we already had,
but this proved to be a little tricky, because they had to stay
in exactly the position we laid them out, resting on the sides
in between the logs.

So once we had them in position, we screwed on some
1x3s while someone held them in place.
Then we flipped it over and screwed it in place.

It worked perfectly!

Side view: you can see the edges of the seat
sitting on the edge of the side log.

They aren't staying in my garden, however.
I thought it only fair to offer them to my boys,
since it was their bed after all.

Thursday, January 26, 2017

Turning a Footboard into a Porch Swing

I have a beautiful handmade four-poster bed.
Unfortunately, the bedroom in this House with Potential
is pretty small and the big bed dwarfed it!

So, I took off the footboard and mounted the headboard to the wall.
The footboard I stored in the shed, figuring I would be able to use it
again in another house.

Over the last few years, I have decided I liked not
having a footboard, so I began to think about what
I could do with the one taking up space in my shed.

I decided on a porch swing.

Now, usually when I come up with an idea like this,
I assume it will be pretty easy; my husband, however,
assumes the opposite.
And he is usually right.

This time, I was right!
It really was pretty simple.

The first thing we did was take off the posts and
straighten out the sides.
We then added arms, made simply out of wood left
over from another project.
The seat was made from slats with 2x4s on the bottom
for added strength.

I thought it might be tricky to hang it, but it too was simple.
Just measure from the top to the arms and add about 10"
to compensate for the slight slant in the chain.

 It's now a favorite spot for the kids!

Thursday, January 19, 2017

Wedding Quilt

My last child got married a few months ago.
My daughter, my middle child, my independent, strong-willed child.


And just like her, the wedding was
elegant, fun, beautiful and intimate.

When my boys got married, I made a quilt for each bride,
featuring their wedding colors and incorporating blocks
that are personal or representative in some way.

 For instance, the wreath surrounding the house
is not only traditional for wedding quilts,
it is also reminiscent of the olive branches that covered the tables
at their reception.

 The blocks that surround the house and wreath represent
the building blocks for their life together,
such as love and faith and joy...

They chose to have all the children in their life,
the groom's son as well as their nieces and nephews,
participate in the ceremony, and pinwheel blocks always
make me think of children.

I also like to add a note on the back that explains
the symbolic nature of the quilt and gives the dates,
so the quilt will become a keepsake for generations.

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to Market...A Farmhouse Mantel

I bought this great cow picture over Christmas,
intending to resell it.

But a funny thing happened on the way to market.

 I was inspired to just try it out on the mantel.

 I added an antique milk pitcher,

and a milk crate for emphasis.

 An old window and farmhouse sign completed it.

A little antique milking stool is also a great addition.

I don't think this little cow is going anywhere
any time soon!

Thursday, November 10, 2016

Building A Triple Bunk Bed

We had a regular bunk bed in the grandkids' room, but as they have grown in size
and number (8 and counting!), it was becoming obvious that something more was needed.

So I looked on Pinterest for ideas and showed Husband what I was thinking.

This is what we built.

I will now try to go through the steps we took to get here.
(I knew I should have done this as soon as it was done,
I hope I don't forget anything!)

Lumber List:
2" x 4"-- 4 @ 6'
                     6 @ 6' 11"
                 6 @ 38"
                 3 @ 40"
  2" x 2"-- 6 @ 5'9"
                  6 @ 34"
1" x 3"-- 4 @ 6'
                  2 @ 41"
                  4 @ 35"
                  4 @ 15"
                14 @ 35"

Other: 18 3" carriage bolts/nuts
lots of 3" wood screws
sand paper and paint or stain

You will want to measure your mattresses to make sure these
measurements are right for you. Also, some of the 1" pieces were used for safety
rails/ladders, and we just put them on one side because the wall did
the job on the other side, so if you want them on both sides, you will need more.

6' pieces for the long sides, 38" pieces for short sides of bed frames.
The dining table proved to be a good place to put
things together.

The 2" pieces worked well to make a lip for the slats.
We glued and screwed them together.

1x3's for the slats, 7 per bed, 35" long.
You only need to do this for 2 of the beds,
the bottom one sits on the floor.

When it came time to put it all together,
we brought some tables in to hold up the bunks
(this was much easier than trying to hold them up while
someone was screwing them together!)

You can see here how they went together.
One frame sat on the floor.
The 6'11" pieces became the posts that held up
the top bunk and part of the middle bunk.
These were bolted to the top and bottom bunks.

The middle bunk is bolted into 2 of the posts,

and the three 40" pieces become the other posts.

When we put it together, we realized that we didn't
need so much space between bunks because their feet
could be under the bunk above. So we lowered
the top (figure this out first, it was a lot of extra work!)

Final heights: the bottom of the top bunk frame is 51" from the floor,
the bottom of the middle bunk frame is 28" from the floor, and
there is 15" between the top of the mattress and bottom of the
bunk above it.

These measurements can be further adjusted to suit
your circumstances. For instance, I have 2 mattresses
on the bottom (floor) bunk, so I can pull them apart
and sleep all little ones there.

The remaining 1" pieces became safety rails and ladders.

We put the ladder rails on the short sides of the beds,
it was easier and just added to the stability.

The final product has been great, sleeping all kids together
(keep in mind, the oldest is 8) and leaving plenty
of room to play!