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Saturday, February 27, 2016

How-To make you own Jewelry Display Frame

Do you keep your jewelry in a box? I did, and because of that, I hardly ever wore any of it! It wasn’t convenient.  I didn’t normally have time to search through my jewelry and then possibly have to untangle a piece. I had to get to work! And, you know the saying, “out-of-sight out-of-mind”, well, that’s true too. Most of the time I didn’t even think about my jewelry!

Well, when I remodeled my house, I took a whole room and customized myself a closet. I carefully thought out how I wanted everything displayed, and when it came to my jewelry,  I decided, that I would probably wear my jewelry more often if I could see it and remember what I had. So I made a display frame to hang on the end of my shoe shelf unit.

Lots of people have asked me to tell how I made this so…

How-To make you own Jewelry Display Frame

This one is mine.

What you will need:
  • Frame (that will fit your wall space)
  • 1/4 or 1/2 inch plywood (cut to fit the inside lip of your frame, leaving 1/8 inch clearance for fabric)
  • 4 flat steel braces sized according to your frame and screws to fit the braces but not go through the other side of the frame (my braces are ½” x 3”, and my screws are #10 screws that are 1/2 inch long)
  • Quilt batting (cut the same size as your plywood)
  • Enough fabric to cover one side of your plywood plus wrap around the edges by 2-3 inches (I used black velvet. You can use anything you like.)
  • Staple gun with 1/4 or 3/8 inch staples
  • Glue Gun and glue sticks
  • Hammer
  • Ice Pick or thin nail
  • Scissors
  • Plain brown kraft paper
  • 2 - “D” Ring Hangers with 1/2 or 3/4 inch screws (depends on the thickness of your frame)
  • Enough Brass cup hooks or decorative knobs to hang your jewelry from (I used the cup hooks because I wanted the jewelry to be the focus and they don’t take up as much space as a knob)

Step One: Find the frame that you want to use and prepare it. Remove any hardware, and glue any loose parts. If it has glass that is unbroken you can trace the outline onto the plywood that you are going to cut. Or you can measure it and have the wood cut at the home store when you purchase it. If you want to paint or stain the frame, now is the time.

Step Two: Cut the plywood (mine was 1/2 inch thick) to fit inside the frame leaving about 1/8 inch space so your fabric will also fit, and sand the edges to remove any splinters.

Note: If you are going to use knobs instead of hooks, now is when you start playing with placement of the knobs, and mark and drill the plywood for the screw holes.

Step Three: Spread out the quilt batting, and smooth out any wrinkles. Lay the plywood on top of the batting, and mark your cutting line. Remove the wood, and cut out the batting.

Step Four: Iron, and then spread out your fabric, good side down, and smooth out any wrinkles. Lay your piece of batting on top of the fabric. Cut your fabric, leaving a good 3 inches of additional fabric showing all the way around the batting.

Step Five: Lay the plywood on top of the batting. Start at the corner, pull the corner of the fabric over the edge of the wood, and staple down. Do all four corners before doing the sides. Make sure you’ve gotten them pulled snugly - not too tight or the fabric will pucker - then fold over the sides. Do one side, then the opposite side, then an end, then the opposite end. When all your sides are stapled, check the fabric on the good side to make sure it is smooth. Make any corrections by removing the problem-staple if necessary, and re-stapling.

Step Six: Lay your covered piece of wood into the frame, just like you were replacing the glass. It should be pretty snug, and you might have to work it to get it set down into the frame. This is when you secure the wood into the frame using the steel braces. It really doesn’t matter where you put the brace. Sometimes I go across the corner, this time you can see that I put them in the middle of each side.

Note: If you’re using knobs instead of hooks, this is when you would start installing them. Put the screw for the knob into the wood from the back until it starts to apply a little pressure to the fabric. Using a razor or an Exacto knife, make a slight cut, just enough to get the screw through the fabric without snagging it, and put the knob on and tighten it up. Do this for each knob until you’re done. Make sure you’ve gotten them all good and tight.

Step Seven: After securing the wood into the frame, cut a piece of brown Kraft paper to cover the entire back of the frame. I staple the first corner just to hold it in place, then I used hot glue, working around the rest of the frame. After it’s glued down, I go back and staple a few spots just to secure it in place.

Step Eight: Decide which of the sides will be your “top”. I use “D” Ring Hangers, because they can support the weight of the frame and the jewelry. Attach one to each side of the frame, a few inches down from your top side.

Note: I don’t put picture-hanging wire on the frame because I don’t want to have to re-balance the frame every time I hang something on it or take something off of it. I hang it directly from the “D” Rings.

Step Nine: I arranged my jewelry a little bit, before deciding where to start putting my hooks. I start by putting the ice pick point where I want the hook to be, and then give it a tap with the hammer to give the hook a starting point. Then, when I put the hook into the fabric, I can feel the dent that I made with the screw end of the hook. This makes it a lot easier to start screwing in the hook. Then you just work your way around the frame installing your hooks. If you have pins or brooches, just use the actual pin to display itself.

Step Ten: Now hang your frame and start displaying your jewelry!

There you have it! Your very own artful jewelry display - there will never be two exactly alike in this whole world! And, just so you know, I really do wear my jewelry a whole lot more, now that I see it every day!

Follow me on my journey
Living and Celebrating Autumn All Year!

Monday, February 15, 2016

New Printer Shelving Unit and Super Easy Under-the-Bed Storage Drawer How-tos, Plus a few inspiration ideas!

Anyone that knows me, knows that I'm always re-decorating, re-arranging and re-organizing. No surprise, but I had to do it again after the Holiday Open House, just so I could get to the desk in my office. Seriously, I had moved so much stuff into the office that I barely could get in there to do anything! So, I pulled everything out that I knew wasn't going to stay in there and started looking at what was left. The next thing I knew, I had completely re-decorated my office.... again!

My first project was new storage for my printers. I had four printers, (don't ask!) on a 6 foot long by 2 foot deep, 2 shelf, cart, that took up way too much of my floor space. In order to maximize my space, I needed to go up, not out, with my printer storage. So, I poked around in my shop, taking a mental inventory of my lumber stash, and saw that I had 4, antique, solid wood, 8' doors, that were only 23 inches wide. Perfect!!

A quick and easy solution to my printer storage space problem!

Here's how I did it.
My supplies: I used two of my 8 foot doors, some scrap 3/4" plywood, 20 "L" brackets, and some dark walnut stain to make my new printer shelving unit. A good rule of thumb is to try using what you have on hand before you go buy anything, get creative, think outside of the box!

Just cut out however many shelves you need, to the width and depth that you want your unit to be. I needed five shelves. Then, because I wanted the back of my unit to be open, so that I could manage the wires easily, I cut three extra pieces, wide enough to attach to both doors, to brace the back of the unit, so it would be rigid and not sway or lean from side to side. I stained all the cut pieces and allowed them to dry before putting anything together. Then, I measured and marked the height placement for each shelf on both of the doors and installed the "L" brackets to the doors. Then one by one attached the shelves. Last but not least I added the three braces on the back of the unit, one at the top, then the bottom and then the middle. I stood the unit up, put it in place and loaded all of the printers on it. Now I could have done a lot of things that I didn't do, like add edging to the plywood shelves, or moldings to make the piece look more polished, but I'm going for a more rustic look and mine works for me. But if you want to add more to yours... go for it! I have definitely increased my available floor space. And it is easily adjustable if I find that I need to make changes in the future.

I wanted to add a twin sized bed to my office layout, and the only way I could justify the floor space that a bed would take up, is if I could still have some sort of storage.

In my previous post, Homemade Bed Risers, I showed you how I made the bed risers for this bed, which was the second project in this makeover.

Here is a photo of my bed risers, and my Pull-out storage drawer.

By making the bed risers, I accomplished several things, one of which was giving myself the extra space under the bed I needed in order to have a pull-out storage drawer that would actually have room in it to store something. Now, you may have seen other posts using a dresser drawer as the under the bed storage pull-out, but, what if you don't have an already-made-drawer sitting around, that's just the size you need? So, I want to show you how easy it is to make a storage drawer for under the bed that works for you. Then you can decide how you make yours.

My third project was the Under the bed Pull-out storage drawer. Here is how I made that.

First I measured the space I had between the risers, and the new height space I now had under the bed. Keep in mind the height of any hardware or wheels that you may add. Then I went to my lumber stash and pulled out the pieces I needed.

Using my scrap 3/4 inch plywood, I measured and marked each piece the length I needed.
The large piece was already 2 feet across, so I didn't have to cut that. I used the miter saw to cut the narrow strips for the sides of my storage drawer, and I used a circular saw to cut the wide bottom piece of the drawer. 

Once I had all the pieces cut to the size that I needed, I used my "Kreg" Jig, (that I love) to pre-drill the side boards. If you don't have a "Kreg" Jig, you still need to mark your boards, and pre-drill them so that you don't split your wood.

Most people would attach the side boards to the edge of the plywood. I attached mine to the top of the plywood because, first, I wanted the extra depth inside the drawer, and second, I would be covering the front of the drawer with another piece of wood, so you wouldn't see the edge of the plywood.

Attach all of your boards to create your drawer.

It's time to attach either the wheels or a gliding system to your drawer. Because I had them already, I used wheels that spin 360 degrees. It is easier to maneuver the drawer if your wheels will move in all directions. It's time to turn your drawer upside down and attach the wheels. I did not put the wheels out close to the edge of the drawer because I needed some clearance space for the facing board that I would attach next.

To give it a finished look, I added an old piece of fence board that I cut down to fit the front of my drawer. After sanding and cleaning the fence board, I dry-brushed it with some white chalk paint and set it aside to dry.

 Here it is before the paint.

Here it is after the paint. 

I added iron handles as a finishing touch.

Here it is under the bed, fully loaded!

A cozy place in my home office to stretch out and read, write or nap. 
Antique, true 2-inch, heart pine from "Gator House", cut for shelves and mounted with iron brackets. see Gator House post here. A small antique barn door hung on a track as my window treatment. 
And an iron candelabra, for a touch of "girly" in this rustic office space.

 A better view of the barn door window treatment.

Need some more ideas?

Follow me on my journey
Living and Celebrating Autumn All Year!

Friday, February 12, 2016

Homemade Bed Risers and Creating Extra Storage Space

I just can't trust bed risers that are plastic! I'm afraid that they'll break, or that the frame leg will jump off the tiny lip at the top of the riser if it gets bumped too hard or there is too much weight put on it. Who likes the way they look? And the "you-pay-for-what-you-get" rule definitely applies to plastic. So here is my version of a bed riser that you can definitely live with for a long long time.

Start with solid wood blocks cut to the height that you want to add to your bed-frame. 
I'm going to add under-the-bed storage that I'll show you in my next post.
My blocks are 5" x 5" x 5". 
 I got them cut at the lumber yard and they are perfectly level. 

Before you do anything to the blocks, you need to take the plastic feet off the bed frame.

Next you need to measure the leg width of the bed frame.
Mine were 1" across.

Get out a drill bit that matches the width of your bed frame leg. I used a 1 inch "Spade" Hole saw bit. 
I have a drill press that I used, but you can use a hand drill if you need to.
You need to either tape or mark your bit, or adjust the drill press,
 to the depth that you want the bed frame leg to fit down into the wood block. 
You do this so that the leg can't just slide off the block if the bed is moved or bumped.
Mine was a full inch deep.

Find the center of the block and mark the starting point. 
Then drill the holes. 
Check each one as you finish, to make sure the depth is the same. 
You want the bed to be level.

Clean them up when you've verified they are the same.
 Make sure all of the saw dust is out of the holes and that the edges are smooth. 
Use a fine grit sand paper if needed.

Check to make sure the bed frame legs fit into the holes and that it sits level.

Here is where you can decide how you want your riser to look.
Paint it, stain it, decoupage it, just put a sealer on it... 
I am making my room look a bit rustic, so I added some weathered wood around my blocks.
I then dry-brushed them with some white chalk paint.

You can see how they look under the bed, next to my roll out storage drawer.

In my next post I'll show you how I made my Roll Out Storage Drawer.

Join me on my journey
Living and Celebrating Autumn All Year!

Friday, February 5, 2016

Dad's Denim Jacket and Templates

I often write about my parents, the love they shared, their creativity and the skills they helped all 5 of us kids develop. Today my dad is in the forefront of my mind. I miss him a lot. I have tons of memories of my dad, and my favorites are of us working on a project together in the shop. In most of those shop memories, he's wearing an old denim jacket, and he's covered with sawdust. That denim jacket has lots character; it's got a few colorful stains from painting and staining wood, and a few dime-sized stiff areas that are wood glue remnants, and it is color-worn where the collar and cuffs fold, but I love that jacket, and now I wear it whenever I need to have him with me.

Me in Dad's jacket

Here are a couple pictures of my dad.

My dad passed away in October of 2003, and when my mom was giving us the things that he wanted us to have, she gave me two large crates of old backer-board and cardboard templates he had made
over the years. Whenever there was a wood project that we had asked him to cut out or build more than one of, he made a template. Those crates, filled with templates, have traveled from our childhood home in Las Vegas, Nevada, to my parents retirement home in Yakima, Washington, and then clear across the country to Montgomery, Alabama, and this is where they were eventually given to me.

Recently I re-organized my garage to make room to work on some large project pieces and had to move those crates. I pulled them out from under one of my work tables, where they were covered with my saw dust. Well, I had to clean them up. Piece by piece I laid them out in three piles.  Pile one - the things I wanted to make soon. Pile two - Things that I wanted to make in the future. Pile three - Things I had no interest in making ever again, which ended up being a very small pile that my sister asked for. I managed to get things organized into the largest of the two crates and found a safe place for it.

Here are a few things we made a long time ago, that I recently made for my open house. Some of them will be available at

This is a crow we did, as a bank, but recently I made them to sit around in my house and garden.
You can't see them in this picture but it has cute little wings that can also hold seed packets!

A cinnamon and sugar pie that holds measuring spoons. 
I made several colors and have different spoon designs too!

Our wooden version of a cast iron pan makes a great paper plate holder.


I like some extra details on the front so I hand painted this Autumn scene.

My tip for you is: MAKE A PATTERN OR TEMPLATE!! Someday you may wish you could remember how you did something. Having a pattern or even a drawing, kept in a safe place, will help. I keep large sheets of cardboard around to make my patterns. 

Thank you for joining me on my walk down memory lane.

Living and Celebrating Autumn all year!