Monday, September 15, 2014


I originally had planned on adding some sort of trim and design work to the wall behind the TV console but after framing up the closets and realizing so much of that wall was going to covered, I changed my focus to the closet doors flanking that space.

Because I had procrastinated on ordering the interior doors (along with many other things), I was able to order flat slabs for those 2 doors, in place of the style I had throughout the house.  This allowed me to create and add any trim design I wanted.

I WAS going to do the same design  as the room divider that is between my dining and living rooms and original to the house. I love that piece and thought it would be nice to carry that detail into the den but last minute, actually while I was laying out the cuts, I changed my mind.  I do that a lot…change my mind:)

Marc ripped down a few 1x10 pieces of maple into 1" strips for me to cut to size.  I was going to do it myself but will be honest, cutting straight lines (even with a guide) isn't exactly my strong area:)

 I wish I could find my inspiration photo that I had for this design.  I couldn't find it and don't know if I had one saved on my phone, pintrest, computer or houzz or maybe it's just all in my head.  I am never quite sure sometimes.
Nevertheless, after playing with the dimensions, my calculator, calling Marc into the garage for advise and different design options for a few HOURS, I came up with this.  

Knowing I would be having to fill in and sand these doors, I used a bead of glue and as few brad nails as possible.

I also hit each piece with a sanding block after each cut and before attaching, which really helped with not having to do so much after it was put together. 

 As you can see, I had a lot of ideas and sketches going on:)

The room is far from being complete but I really do love how they turned out and really, the only thing I would do differently is start the door border out at 2x the thickness as the trim inside the frame.

After doing the first door I realized it would look best to have the border thicker and let me just say, it was a LOT easier to do it on the second door with a clean slate than it was filling in all of the cuts afterwards.

I also love how we were able to hide the cable box under the console


Tuesday, September 9, 2014


I am aware that most people who refinish know about the "tips" and "tricks" I provide, which is the reason I rarely share, but once in a while,  I just feel the need to help that one person out if I can:)

This is one of those tips…

Personally, I remove 99% of my hardware, including hinges.  I am not saying a painted hinge is a bad thing, but when you are doing a super modern piece it just doesn't look clean, or modern, or right…so yeah, I guess a painted hinge can be a bad thing.  I said it. Now I feel bad, but a little better

The unfortunate thing is that when you remove old hinges, it can be tricky to get doors lined up JUST RIGHT when reinstalling, so I assume that is my most people paint hinges.  It's totally easier. I get it and I actually now charge a LITTLE more when refinishing a piece with doors because I KNOW I will be spending an extra hour removing and reinstalling those babies.  I hate it.

A problem I also find with these old hinges is that often times the holes are stripped or too large to use a flat screw that will sink into the hinge holes and actually allow the door to close nicely.  When this happens, there is a pretty simple solution.

I have a tupperware container full of different sized that I use for different reason as well as dowel rods on hand, for different "fix" it reasons. I find my dowels at Lowes, Homey D, Joanns, Hobby Wobby…they are all over

I found the right size dowel, which was probably the smallest in diameter that they make and cut to size.  I guessed on length but knew I didn't want it sticking out at all. 

With a little dab of wood glue, stuff that baby in and let dry for a bit.

Now your screws with "catch" and pull the hinge in tight!

I have also used a toothpick many times as well.  Sometimes you just need the hole filled in just a tiny bit to make the screw catch, like on the other door side.  

I like to use the flatter toothpicks, not the round ones.  But don't use a flat toothpick to pick your teeth, that's just dumb.

And don't pick your teeth in public, that's just gross.

Tuesday, September 2, 2014


Sorry if I have talked about these products a little too much but I just want to spread the LOVE!

There is no denying that mostbof the pieces that come through my shop need to be totally stripped and re-stained but once in a while, all they need is some TLC.

Before…This is the photo my client sent me.  She wanted the drawers stripped and re-stained.  Although we all know that pictures can be very deceiving, I was hopeful that all they really needed was some "Howard" love!

Not only is this easier for me but it also saves the client some money.  Win-Win!

The Restore A Finish comes in different Shades.  I find that Dark Walnut and Oak are the two colors I seem to use the most. The Feed N Wax is the follow up product.  I Use the wax ALL THE TIME by itself.  Sometimes that is actually all you need to pretty up a piece!

The drawers BEFORE…little dingy

I use a VERY fine steel wool pad to wipe the drawer or piece down first.

After cleaning, with a clean rag, wipe on the Restore A Finish product.  Do not pour onto the drawer but onto the rag after shaking the can well.

Photo of the drawers after using the Restore A Finish (but before the wax).  This product colors in the dings and brings dull finishes back to life!

After 30 minutes, wipe on the wax (directions on bottle) to achieve an even nicer finish.

Love that hardware!