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Friday, August 17, 2012

DIY Wedding M&M: Invitations

My brother-in-law Matt is getting married in two weeks.  TWO WEEKS!!!  He is getting married up in Oregon, in the Portland Temple, as his bride, Mandy, is from Eugene...where we lived when my husband was in law school, and where Matt now goes to law school as well.  Which means there will be an open house here in Utah, where he is from, a week later.  So needless to say, I have been all kinds of busy with preparations, both for the wedding in Oregon and the open house here.  I'll have LOTS to share with you after the blessed event is over, but until then, I thought I'd share their wedding announcement.
I designed it based on this invitation that Mandy really liked.  
I used the ever faithful Photoshop, and a digital stamp by Stampin' Up!  The fonts are the King and Queen for their names, and Tangerine for the rest of the invitation.
We got them printed with Catprint, for a fraction of what our inspiration would have cost!  Mandy paid $158.55 for 300 invitations plus white envelopes, 30 insert cards for those invited to the temple ceremony, and 60 insert cards for those invited to the wedding dinner.  Just 300 invitations alone of our inspiration would have cost $306.00, plus whatever for S&H.  Yet another reason to love DIY!
Mandy then took this lovely photo of the two of them, 
taken in my in-laws backyard before church when they were visiting (and that I prettied up a bit in Photoshop) and got 300 printed at Costco with a coupon for $0.09 a piece, $27.00 total.
So 300 beautiful custom invitations cost them a grand total of $185.55!  Now if only stamps were free.....

I'll be back in a couple weeks with all kinds of wedding ideas and tutorials to share with you!

Friday, August 3, 2012

Painting Cabinets (or Furniture) Without Sanding

Boy, do I have a lot going on right now.  A LOT.  I'm starting to feel a little better....still nauseous, but it's nausea I can push through and function still.  At least during the day....evenings are a whole 'nother story.
Anyway, a friend of mine has some furniture she wants to update with a little paint, and I told her I'd give her my shortcuts to doing it....and I thought I should just write a blog post and share it with all of you too!

So back in February, I woke up in the middle of the night and decided I hated my kitchen cabinets and I was going to paint them.  For long time readers, you'll remember I spent a few months when we first bought our house sanding down and restaining those very kitchen cabinets.  Truth is, I was never happy with how they turned out, but after all the blood, sweat and tears (literally), I couldn't bring myself to admit it until months later!

These steps are specifically tailored to kitchen cabinets, but they can be applied to furniture as well.
So let's get started.  First things first, remove all the cabinet doors and drawer fronts, remove the hardware and take down all hinges.  Tape around the cabinet bases.  Then put down some plastic in your garage and lay out all those cabinet doors and drawer fronts.

This is our replacement sanding step.  With painting, all you need to do is dull the finish enough for the paint to stick, whereas with traditional restaining, you have to remove not only the protective top coat, but the original stain as well.  Hence the agonizing hours of sanding.
You need a deglosser.
Wear rubber gloves!  Pour some deglosser into a styrofoam bowl and use a cheap bristle paint brush to apply it to each of your doors, drawer fronts and cabinet bases in batches.  Let it sit for about 5 minutes, then come back with those gloves on and a good old fashioned Brillo pad in hand.
Using the Brillo pad, scrub all the surfaces you coated in deglosser thoroughly.  By using the Brillo pad along with the deglosser, you are smoothing things out a bit as well as deglossing the surface.  Flip the cabinet doors and drawer fronts over and repeat.
The deglosser will dry leaving a bit of a white residue.  That's okay, don't worry about it.

Next step: Primer!

I used an awesome water-based product by Zinsser, their Bulls Eye 1-2-3 Primer, designed to stick to any surface.  It's similar to their Cover Stain Primer, which I used when I painted my laminate bookshelves...but it's SO much better since it's water-based instead of oil-based.  Get a good quality angled paint brush and get the primer into the crevices.  Then pour around half a cup of primer onto a styrofoam plate and roll a high density foam roller into it, making sure to get an even amount of primer on your roller.  Then roll away.  Repeat as needed.  I only did one full coat of primer, but I made sure it was a good one!

And onto the Paint!
I used Valspar Signature Colors Paint and Primer in One, satin finish in Dove White.  I opted for paint plus primer because I was painting fairly dark cabinets with gnarly dark grain WHITE.  Even if your situation is different, I would still recommend the paint plus primer.  Just to be thorough.
Use the same angled brush then styrofoam plate and high density foam method.  This ensures you get light even coats with no globbies.  'Cause who wants globbies.
ALSO!  If you have oak with gnarly grain like I do, make sure you get the paint into all the grain!  Use the end of your foam roller to really scrub it in there...

Otherwise it will look like a cheap, poorly done paint job (like one of the houses we looked at during the hunting process...one of those houses that you can't believe anyone would EVER buy....)
Repeat the process as needed, making sure it dries thoroughly between coats.

Last but not least, top coat.
I used Valspar Clear Protector.  This stuff is awesome.  Apply it the same way as you did the primer and paint.  I did two coats overall, then three to four coats on the backside of the bar (where my children stick their grimy feet) and on the cabinet bases/door underneath the sink.  Just something to keep in mind, higher wear areas would benefit from an extra coat or two.

Once the top coat is thoroughly dry, you can reassemble your kitchen (or furniture!).

And for kicks, here is my kitchen in its many stages in the past year.

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