Tuesday, March 29, 2011

DIY: Ethan Style!

Since we are getting so close to Ethan's BIG nursery reveal, I thought I would give you some DIY projects that we (ok, my husband) did just for our sweet little boy! My sister was sweet enough to allow us to borrow a LOT of Riley's baby items (swing, bouncy seat, crib...the list goes ON and ON).  Riley's crib is beautiful, but matching the wood has been quite difficult on a budget.  

I really wanted to use a dresser/media chest for Ethan's changing table because of the extra storage it has compared to a regular changing table.  I also wanted to purchase something for him that he could continue to use as a dresser as he turns into a little boy (sniff) and even a teenager (bigger sniff).  So Jason and I started on the hunt for the perfect thing early on in my pregnancy.

The day after Thanksgiving, Jason and I went to a local furniture store having a MAJOR sale with an additional 20% off.  We walked out with this baby for $130:
Great height for changing, HUGE drawers for storage, and totally the wrong color.  Since my husband is such a fantastic artist, I put him to work.  Rather than attempt to stain the wood the appropriate color and spend hours working on matching it to Riley's crib, we opted to paint ALL off the furniture a different color than the crib.  This will allow the crib to become a bit like the Captain's Wheel on a fishing boat: the focal point of the room, the essential piece, and to completely stand out.

So Jason got started by moving this piece into the garage and work in the FREEZING cold to avoid a huge mess in the house and not expose his pregnant wife to excessive dust and paint fumes.  He's the greatest thing since sliced bread...at least I think so.  But that is for another day.

He took off all the knobs and sanded the entire dresser down:
He put two coats of an off white onto the dresser and began to "distress it" with a paler blue.  To do this, he used a ripped up sponge and barely grazed the surface of the piece with the blue, just enough to leave the cream to reveal itself as well:
Another picture of one of the sides during the "distressing" phase.
He then added a clear coat to the entire piece to give it extra shine and to avoid wiping the paint off during our many cleaning sessions of this piece.  Then he moved it right back into the nursery where it belongs!

I admit, I have had MINIMAL contributions to Ethan's room.  My mom and I spent time on the curtains, the bedding, hanging things on the walls (ok, she did that), and the smaller things, but Jason has done every bit of it.  However, the one contribution Mom and I had to this dresser were the knobs.  Since we have chosen a nautical theme, I decided I did not want the original knobs back on the dresser, and the hunt began.  It took about 10 minutes to realize how EXPENSIVE hardware is for furniture.  We went to plan B, and purchased several feet of rope.  After researching many nautical knots, we chose the monkey's fist:

Rather than explain this to you myself (let's face it, this was a major pain in the rear to do) I'll share the YouTube video we found to guide us through make 6 monkey's fist knots for Ethan's dresser.

Once we finally finished tying and tightening these freaking knots, we spread a thin layer of clear coat on them to keep them from loosening up over time.  We burned the edges of the rope to keep from fraying, and attached them to the dresser.  We attached them by tying a simple knot on the inside of the dresser with each end.
And HERE is our finished product!

We haven't purchased the changing pad just yet, and this is a picture of it with random things sitting on it while waiting for the other furniture.  You will see its use in all its glory when we finally reveal the entire nursery to you!


Rachel said...

Very cute! I wish I was that creative.

Anonymous said...

It turned out great! We've got a little DYI project to get on as well. But it's not for the baby's room...just hoping to have it done BEFORE the baby gets here.

Erika and Jason said...

Love it! Very clever idea. Can't wait to see the whole thing:-)

Tatiana said...

Oh, it turned out beautiful! love it. I'm excited to see all the nursery come together

Jax said...

Ohmygosh so adorable! I am SO not good at imagining things looking different with a facelift, etc. I saw that black dresser and thought "Oh that's nice" and then at the end, I was like "WOW! Lookie what they did!" Amazing!