Category Archives: DIY Projects

Boho Bistro

Are you ready for spring? I know that I am! Add a pop of color to your patio this spring with a DIY bistro set!

Boho Bistro Chair

These darling wrought iron chairs had chipped black enamel and rust, but I managed to save them from the dump with a little lot of elbow grease.

Using some WD-40 and a wire brush, I was able to scrub off the rust and remove loose enamel. I then scrubbed them down with a little soap and water and left them outside to dry before sanding down the rough areas with 80 grit sand paper. To further smooth out the metal, I gradually increased the grit to 100, 120, 150, and finally 220.

Now that the surface was decent, I used Rustoleum Gray primer for automobiles. I gave them two coats and lightly sanded with 180 grit between coats.

I let them cure for a few days while I decided on a color. At the time, we were living in Germany, where the sky tended to be gray most of the year. I needed a vibrant, happy color that would Pop even on dark, gray days. The selection of colors at the local Post Exchange was slim. I had the choice of primary red, yellow, green, and blue.  Though I loved the idea of red, the color was not bright enough for me, so I settled on Rustoleum Sun Yellow in Gloss. I worked slowly, and lightly sanded between each coat. I ended up using 2 cans of primer and 5 cans of the yellow paint.

Bistro Table Original

The chairs did come with a darling round bistro table, but it was beyond salvage. The rust was so bad that some areas were completely rotted through. I was bummed until I found this cute folding table at a thrift store. The top had a dark oak cherry and the legs were black. I loved that the curve of the feet mimicked the curved back of the chairs.

I sanded the top and removed some deep scratches, then used an antique white chalk paint on the table top. I was far from satisfied.


20170410_133448A quick trip to Joanne’s Fabrics solved my dilemma when I spotted this lovely summer outdoor fabric on clearance.

BohoBistro.3Later on, I found a cute stencil that reminded me of my trip to Morocco. It had finally come together!


I made the chair cushions and used the colors from the fabric on the table top. Once the top was finished, I sprayed it with to protect the surface. Though I would not leave it out in the rain, it provides protection against water rings from tall glasses of lemonade or iced tea.


This set is a lovely testament to warm weather, spring blossoms, and summer beverages.

Now get out there and brighten up your patio set! It is worth it.



It’s Time For Another Vintage Suitcase Project!

A few days ago a friend and I were at a local thrift shop when she spotted a vintage suitcase for me. I took one look and fell in love. It’s not intricate or beautiful in the same way that my last one was, but it is unique. It looks like it may be from the late 40s to the mid-50s. It is most likely of German origin. I purchased it, not having any clue as to what I was going to do with it.



Yesterday, as I was contemplating what to do with my “new” suitcase, I remembered a post I recently saw on Leah’s Confession Closet. She posted a picture of her Ikea Vanity table, which lit my creative imagination.  Then I did what any normal Diyer does–I went to Pinterest. It’s not that I need a tutorial or further inspiration, but I do love to look at what others have done so that I can improve upon my own ideas. I also wanted to see what kind of legs would look best.

Here are a few of the Vintage Suitcase Vanity Tables that I came across on Pinterest.

The first two are from Mrs. Hyde’s on Etsy. Click on the pictures to visit her shop.

suitcase vanity table insp
From Mrs. Hydes

I just love the long tapered legs on this vanity table.

suitcase table 2

I love the idea of turning a smaller suitcase into a table top or dresser top vanity. Her work on this one is beyond me. I love the fabric that she chose.

This one is from Optimize Design. I found the picture on Houzz.

I love the vanity lights, but I don’t think that they will look right when the vanity is closed.

I really can’t wait to get started on this project. I will have to contemplate the leg style. I would love to use hairpin legs, but they are quite expensive. I do think it would look good with angled tapered legs though. In the mean time, I have to finish the other projects that I already started.

Pinterest Musings: Pallet Projects

We ran into a little problem after opening the Malm boxes form Ikea. There were no slats for the mattress. Yes, I should have listened to the husband. Here’s the conversation we had as we stood in front of the center rail piece and the bed slats:

Husband: “I think we need these bed slats”

Me: “it’s not on the Ikea shopping list that I printed out. They must be in one of the two boxes.”

Husband: “just because it is not on the print-out, doesn’t mean that we don’t need them. Better to have than to be sorry tomorrow when we put the bed together.”

Me: “I’d rather not have to deal with returns. If we need them, then I will pick them up on Monday.”

Husband: “Okay honey. Whatever you think is best.”–which actually means “you are an idiot and I don’t feel like arguing”

I don’t say this often, but he was right.

So, instead of heading out to Ikea on Monday, husband found a great solution–pallets!

They are free at the Post Exchange (PX).

So he went and grabbed about 5 or 6 of them. After we put the bed together and measured the area, he went outside and cut them. They work great! My mistake saved us 20 Euro!

More on the pallet bed slats later.

Now we have some leftover bits from the pallets. So, I asked myself, “toss them, or check Pinterest?”

I checked Pinterest of course!

Here are a few ideas that I found. Just click on the Picture to go to the web page.

This would look nice in my daughter’s room.

Mason Jar Organizer DIY Playbook

I like this idea for the Laundry room. Could do a couple of these with each family member’s name.

Check Your Pockets Laundry Room Sign by BandLCreations on Etsy, $18.00

I love this one too. We drink more beer now that we are Germany, so this one makes a lot of sense.

Bar Decor

These could make a nice gift.

Barn Wood Coasters

I also love these. They would look great on the patio.

White barn wood mason jar candle holders

These are just a few of the thousands of ideas on Pinterest. Of course, I’m working with bits and pieces, so I’m doing small projects. I can’t wait to get started on one of these ideas. Or maybe I’ll come up with an idea of my own.

Have you made any pallet projects that you would like to share? Post a link in the comments!

Progress Report

I had a nasty respiratory infection last week, so I did not get much done. But I did manage to drag myself to Ikea this last Saturday to purchase a few items. Mostly I shopped for my son’s bedroom. We bought his Malm bed. Here’s just a ew pics of what I accomplished this week.

I put together 3 Billy Bookcases in the office. Two of them are the 40 cm by 202 Cm and the one in the closet is 80 cm by 106 cm. I did manage to do a lot of organizing in the office, so I’m quite pleased. I also put the new cover on the Beddinge Lovas futon.

One of the Billy Bookcases
One of the Billy Bookcases

Liberty Belle loves the pile of pillows!

Liberty tests out the new Beddinge Lovas Cover
Liberty tests out the new Beddinge Lovas Cover

We did manage to put together the Malm bed and mount his lamps today (Sunday), but it was late and I did not get a picture.

I printed out a few pictures from our Berlin Trip and put them into the Nyttja frames.

Pictures from Our Berlin Trip
Pictures from Our Berlin Trip

I put Thomas’ art print into the large Ribba frame. This was one of his B-day gifts from us. Since Thomas has taken to calling my husband “Salty” whenever he is in a bad mood, we thought this was appropriate.

Salty Tolerance
Salty Tolerance

These are Ikea prints that my son absolutely loves. He bought the phone print several years ago with his own money.

Ikea Art
Ikea Art

I’ve done a bit more around the Living Room and in the pantry as well, but since I wasn’t feeling well, I didn’t take pictures. I should have a blog posts for the Living room and office soon.  Hope you all have a fantastic week!

Project Progress

Saturday was a very busy day for my daughter and me.  We went to the Nurnberg/Furth Ikea to pick up the majority of the items on my Ikea Project Mood boards.

Mostly Ikea Living Room
Mostly Ikea Living Room

From the Living Room Mood board, I purchased two Ektorp love seats, the Hemnes TV Console, 2 narrow Billy Bookcases (and doors), and the Hemnes side table.  The design has changed a little from this original mood board. and I can’t wait to show you the finished room!

Ikea Office Design
Ikea Office Design

For the office I picked up the two Billy Bookcases, a new cover for the Beddinge Lovas Futon, and the remaining part of my desk.

We also picked up some legs for a dining room table and bunch of small miscellaneous items that we either needed or wanted. We also picked up dinner in the Ikea grocery section–meatballs, mashed potatoes, gravy mix, and lingonberry sauce.

This was our haul.

Ikea Shopping Trip. Does not include the Ektorp Boxes
Ikea Shopping Trip. Does not include the Ektorp Boxes
Loaded by me and my daughter.
Loaded by me and my daughter.

When we got home, my husband and I assembled the Ektorp love seats.  After he went to bed, my daughter and I assembled the Hemnes TV console–not easy! Sunday I worked on the bookcases and the room arrangement. It’s not perfect, but we have an odd and small space, so we made it work as best we could.


THis next picture is all of the parts for the Hemnes TV console. My daughter came up with the idea, and it made the assembly SO much easier!

Hemnes TV console Parts
Hemnes TV console Parts


Maggie certainly likes the sofa. We need to re-train her.

Black dog, White Sofa--Oops.
Black dog, White Sofa–Oops.

This is what we’ve  done so far…just a sneak peek.


More to come soon!