Day of the Dead Dollar Tree Wreath

I made a Day of the Dead wreath from Dollar Tree materials, including the mesh tubing. I love how it turned out but it was a big one and took literally all day to make the wreath and paint the skull. See pic of it at the end. I used this tutorial to make the big one: https://gracemonroehome.com/how-to-make-a-deco-mesh-loop-wreath/

I had a pile of left over pieces of mesh tubing so instead of throwing it away, I used it to create a smaller version. I think it turned out pretty darn cute!

I had a small Dollar Tree Day of the Dead skull painting kit I used for this one. It is approximately 3 1/2” x 5”. It comes with several craft paints, but I chose to use our Missouri Limestone Paint Company chalk-style paint colors instead. I love how vibrant they are, but many chalk paints would work, too, as well as the paints that came with it.

I also made about a 9” wreath form out of 18 gauge wire we had here.

But, if you were going to use new pkgs of the DT mesh tubing, I would get maybe 3 pkgs (1 of each color). DT also may have a heavy wire that you can mold as shown below, and you will need the 3 1/2”x5” Day of the Skull paint kit. You will also need a pkg of pipe cleaners. I chose to use black.

I cut a piece of wire about 22” long.

I formed it into a circle about 9” round, then wove another row around in and out to make it a bit more sturdyand cut off any excess. I crimped the ends so they wouldn’t be sharp.

I wanted to make sure my skull would fit inside. I had already started painting it here. I also ended up removing the little stand as I didn’t need it.

I then cut the black pipe cleaner as needed into 4 equal pieces.

I cut the wire mesh pieces into about 6” lengths. I didn’t have enough purple, so I only did 3 of them to spread out. But if I would have had enough, this is the pattern I would use.

I put 3 colors together and then made 3 loops. I used the pipe cleaner piece and put it around and twisted them tightly together.

I then started attaching them to the wire form. I alternated the cut edges so they weren’t all going on the same direction.

I stopped adding when I got to a point where the skull would fit on the side with no wire showing.

I then painted the skull with colors that would go well with the mesh tubing. I used the black already on it as an outline, painting the face and teeth white, and painted colors inside the black lines. I also painted the back black.

I sealed it front and back with Mod Podge acrylic spray and Mod Podge Pearlized spray to give it a little shimmer.

Danny drilled tiny holes, big enough for the pipe cleaner to to through on the top and bottom and I used the pipe cleaner from the last pieces of attached mesh to hold the skull in place.

And there you have it. A mini Day of the Dead wreath next to the big one I made earlier.

Decoupage Napkins in a Faux Galvanized Tin Holder

Here are the steps I took to create the coasters:

1. I purchased these stone tiles as part of a package at Home Depot. I cleaned the them thoroughly.

2. I usually paint the tops and sides with our Missouri Limestone Paint Company chalk-style paint in “January” as white paint will really help the print stand out. But these coasters were already white on one side so I skipped this step.

3. I chose areas of the napkin that would look good centered on the tiles and cut them a little bigger than the coaster. I peeled off the two white layers of the napkin so that I was left with only the printed part. Sometimes napkins will only have one white layer.

4. For the decoupage medium, I used Mod Podge on this set. I applied a layer over the white paint and while still wet I applied the napkin. I used a piece of plastic wrap to press the napkin into the stone, making sure I had no bubbles.this plastic wrap helps to keep the napkin from sticking to my fingers.

5. Once dry, I used 220 sandpaper to sand the edges.

6. I then used 2 coats of Rustoleum spray lacquer on the tops and sides to seal the napkin. Using lacquer will not reactivate the poly, so no bubbles formed.

I used a painting technique to create a faux galvanized tin look to a plain black coaster holder.

You can see how I did this technique in another blog post, found here.

I enjoyed doing this technique so much I have used it on a variety of items.

Paint a Pair of Leather Shoes in Less Than an Hour

I am not a newbie when it comes to painting shoes with chalk-style paint, specifically the brand we own and produce “Missouri Limestone Paint Company”. I’ve painted shoes made of quality leather as well as those that are from cheap man-made materials. Then I’ve worn the heck out of them. This latest pair I painted two coats and applied two coats of salve – all in less than an hour.

Oh my! These look ready for the trash! But they are so comfortable! Especially when I’m on my feet painting, apparently. Lol
But no more painting in this beautiful pair of shoes! They look brand new, don’t they?

Would you like to know how I did it? First, a sneak peek to see the transformation in progress.

I started out by cleaning the shoes well with Windex. This is my go to cleaner for many things I paint.

All the added color on this pair is from our chalk-style paint. This paint is on there for good, trust me. Cleaning didn’t remove it, nor could I scratch it off. I didn’t want to sand it or use chemicals on it, so…. I painted over it. 😏

Missouri Limestone Paint Company chalk-style paint Color: Gray Goose
I painted the elastic on the strap, too.
I even painted the soles!

I also know from experience, our paint does very well on rubber. I painted a Rubbermaid mailbox several years ago….no sealer….and it still looks brand new today. So, I also painted the soles of this pair of shoes, but did not seal them.

Needs a second coat of paint

I painted the first coat. It dried quickly, but so also helped it along with a hair dryer. You can see the reddish look coming through along with the spots from the original paint splatters. But look! No brush strokes! Our paint (when applied in thin coats), does not leave brush strokes.

2nd coat covered well

It is time to apply the salve. I love Wise Owl Salve and keep it on hand for projects like this.

Can you tell which shoe has had the Wise Owl Salve applied? If you said the left one, you are correct!

As you can see, I applied the Wise Owl salve on the left shoe so you can see what a difference it makes.

Wow, right?

I applied the first coat of salve and buffed it. Then, I applied a light second coat and just rubbed it in, but did not buff. Remember, I DID NOT use the salve on the soles.

And there you have it! Another pair of shoes given a new life. I promise not to paint in these! I will periodically apply another coat of salve and buff it in.

A Faux Galvanized Tin Hanging Pendant Light

https://sharsumpaint.com/2020/08/06/a-faux-galvanized-tin-hanging-pendant-light/

I found a great tutorial for creating faux galvanized tin using paint. I repurposed this brass plated hanging pendant light and it looks like the real thing.

The tutorial shows it on a cardboard box. Since I was painting on metal, I used a spray primer first.

https://shellyhickox.blogspot.com/2015/04/decoart-media-faux-galvanized-canisters.html?m=1

This is what I did:

1. Took the light apart and scuffed up the pieces. Cleaned well.

2. Sprayed all pieces with primer.

3. Painted with Metallic Silver waterbased paint. I put a small amount in plastic cup and painted out of it. I even painted the cord.

4. Added a little Medium gray color chalk-style paint to the metallic, stirred it in, and using a piece of natural sponge, I dabbed it on each piece. I used our brand we own and produce: Missouri Limestone Paint Company.

5. Then I added a little white and dabbed again all over.

6. Then I added some black and dabbed again.

7. Finished by dabbing a little silver metallic with a brush, making sure there wasn’t much paint on the brush.

8. Sealed with Wise Owl Salve.

Repurposing a Faded Rubber Mat

I have been seeing people painting these worn out rubber mats. I even have one of my own I’ve been planning on painting. But mine was always black with a geometric design so I hadn’t been that motivated yet. I’m sure it will stand out, though, once painted with beautiful colors.

But then, this week, I found two faded flower ones for $1 each at a yard sale and I snatched them up!

We also picked up a couple of grandkids for the weekend so mom and dad could celebrate their anniversary. While the grands were content watching TV and playing on their devices, I thought I would just start on one to see what it was like. I am very impressed! They paint up great and are easy to paint.

I used our brand of chalk-style paint, Missouri Limestone Paint Company, in a variety of colors. I know rubber usually does well outside curing without sealing, but because this will get walked on a lot, I will seal it. I am leaning toward using a matte spray lacquer.

I was working on it on the dining room floor and one of my grandsons came over to see what I was doing. He wanted to help me and so he did. He’s not even in Kindergarten yet and he works so carefully. He is really a good painter. He also wanted to make a how-to video like his cousins had done so he has videos here, too. Of course, I would lose my helper until I changed colors. Then he’d be back again.

When we finished, he wanted to show how painting tired him out. Lol

Not only is he a good painter, he’s a comedian, too. 😂🥰

Here is the 2nd one. I used jewel tone colors on it. Sure missed having my little helper here as I worked on it.

Creating a Faux Concrete Pot

An experiment to reimagine a small terra cotta pot into a faux concrete one.

Not bad for a first attempt. May use sea salt next time and see what that does.

  1. Mixed calcium carbonate with Missouri Limestone Paint Compamy chalk-style paint with “Coal Shovel” and painted on the pot with a foam dauber to get as much texture as possible.
  2. Painted a light coat of “Cupboard Green over that. Made sure I painted the inside, too.

I didn’t do a light sanding after adding the green. In hindsight, I wish I would have done that to bring out a little of the black.

  1. Painted a light coat of “Sunday Silver” over the green.
  2. Painted a light dry brush of “Winter Gloves” over the “Sunday Silver.
  3. Sanded a little by hand with 220. No sealer necessary.

I added couple of faux cactus from Dollar Tree for a new look.

Saving an Awesome Coffee Table from the Dead

What a makeover! This awesome slate topped huge coffee table was a custom job. We brought it back from the dead as it was in pretty rough shape with a finish that was the old thick rough and nasty varnish. Prepping is definitely the key! Quite the project, right? But once we finish, it will be perfect in the young person’s apartment (once moving day occurs). For now, it will go in mom and dad’s basement family room and still be used by young people. 🙂

The first thing you need to do is spend some time contemplating how to remove the top. Oh, and to find a place to store the slate top until needed again. No problem, it resided under our living room couch until needed. 🙂

It looks like there are screws. I think we will remove the top to make it easier to paint and to see if any repairs are needed. After many minutes of contemplating, the screws were removed. The only repair needed actually was one section on the bottom needed some glue.

The top sanded easily to get it smooth enough to paint. A good cleaning and two coats of our Missouri Limestone Paint Company chalk-style paint “Coal Shovel” and two coats of Varathane Crystal clear water based polyurethane in satin finish later, it was ready for curing.

The top is looking great!

Sanding the bottom piece wasn’t working at all. Danny got a good amount off with stripper, then I did another round of stripping with mineral spirits mixed in. That helped a lot. Then another round of mineral spirits. Cleaned well them sanded again. Used a tack cloth to get rid of any sanding dust. Then cleaned really well again. That finally got it smooth enough for painting.

Whoever says you don’t need to prep if you use chalk-style paint doesn’t know what they are talking about. It was definitely a process on this bottom piece!

Painted with two coats of Missouri Limestone Paint Company chalk-style paint “Coal Shovel” (https://sharsumpaint.com/missouri-limestone-paint-company-colors/) and sealed with two coats of Varathane water based polyurethane in satin finish. This table is now ready to be put back together!

What an amazing difference!

Now came the task of lining the top and bottom holes for screwing it back together.

Bamboo skewers to the rescue! All holes are now lined up perfectly!

The beautiful slate top was rescued from under the couch and got a good drink of Wise Owl Lemon Verbena Salve. What a difference that made! It smells good now, too!

So happy how it turned out. This table is eventually going in a young person’s apartment. I can just see a group of young people gathered around it. Sitting on colorful pillows that could easily be stored underneath.

There will be a lot of fun times gathered around this coffee table! This is one sturdy, beautiful table now!
Love the black rippled slate top!

A Black and White Coffee Bar Sign

I created this fun coffee bar sign. It was easy and turned out great!

I started with an 11×14” thin canvas board from Dollar Tree and a package of Priss wall stickers from Dollar General. I used Mod Podge to glue them down and Varathane water-based polyurethane satin finish to seal them.

I laid out the words in a design I liked and then took the backing off the first one to apply. I saw right away the adhesive wasn’t sticking well to the canvas board so I made the decision to use Mod Podge to glue each one down.

Once they were all down and sealed well l gave them another coat of Mod a Podge.

I will usually use a hair dryer to help the dry time and use my fingers to press down to help alleviate any lifting or bubbles.

I didn’t care for the gloss of the Mod Podge so I used the Varathane satin finish polyurethane to seal and gave it two thin coats. I like to use a damp car sponge to apply polyurethane. It now had a nice matte finish.

I thought a black frame would set it off. I didn’t want to go to Dollar Tree so I started searching for an 11×14” frame I might have. Score! I found a frame and it is vintage! I know it is vintage because it held my husband’s 1971 college diploma. Lol! Not anymore!

I kept the glass in as it will help with durability.

And there you have it! An adorable black and white 11×14” coffee bar sign. Wouldn’t it look great paired with a set of Rae Dunn coffee mugs?

A Round Pedestal Table Gets an Amazing Makeover

I found this small (20.75” tall and 24” wide) solid wood table at a flea market about a year ago.

https://sharsumpaint.com/2020/07/16/a-round-pedestal-table-gets-an-amazing-makeover/

It was in good shape, but dated. It needed a makeover. We had sanded the top almost all the way, but it still needed a bit more to get it down to bare wood.

However, life got in the way and so it sat in our basement waiting patiently for its makeover.

A few days ago, it happened. I took the heat gun and stripped away the rest of the residue on the top, then sanded it smooth and hand scuffed the base. I cleaned it well.

I couldn’t wait to try out the DIY wood aging stain recipe I found and mixed up. It had been sitting waiting to be used for several weeks. I had tried it right after I mixed it up on a board. I think it reacts differently on different types of wood and it really hadn’t had a chance to darken the wood much. But, it turned out with a beautiful, natural wood look that I loved.

The stain is a mix of used coffee grounds, vinegar and steel wool. It doesn’t look very pretty in the jar, but wait until you see it on this oak table top!

Here’s the link to the DIY tutorial I found and used: https://www.familyhandyman.com/article/how-to-stain-unfinished-wood-with-used-coffee-grounds/?_cmp=stf

The interesting thing is you don’t see how it is working until it dries. At first it looks like it is just darkening the wood (and it darkens more as it dries) but when it dries, ahhhh….there is that beautiful grayish cast….just like old barn wood that has been left out in the weather for years. And this photo doesn’t even do it justice.

Hmmm…..At this point I happened to notice a strange formation in the grain going across the top. In my eye, I saw a llama head and neck. There are actually 4 of them, seeming to march in a line across the table, but this one stands out more than others. Still not seeing it? Let me help you. Lol

So now I had the stain on, but I wanted to really enhance the old wood look so I sealed it with a mix of liming wax and clear wax.

I wanted to open up the grain for the liming wax to get into it and stay so I used a wire brush and carefully ran it across the table top, going with the grain.

The liming wax I used is by Briwax. I mixed some of it with Howard’s Chalk-tique light wax. You can use any brand of clear wax, though. Mixing them together gives you a little more control over the liming wax and provides a nice finish. I think you can purchase both of these products from several places like Amazon online.

The next photo shows half the table top with the liming wax combo and half without. What a difference the liming wax makes!!

Can you see my 4 marching llamas? I know…. they are hard to see. Lol

Let me help. 🙂

Here is the top all waxed and buffed. Again, pics don’t really show just how beautiful this table top is. The sheen of the wax is gorgeous!

By the way, did you know wax helps repel dust? So using wax on furniture that isn’t going to get a lot of heavy use will save you dusting time, too!

The little metal feet needed a makeover, too, so I took them off and spray painted them a metallic gold. So pretty now!

Now it was time to paint the base. Sometimes I use primer, sometimes I don’t. I didn’t on this one. I had just cleaned and scuffed it up really well. In retrospect, I wish I had primed this and I wouldn’t have had to use as many coats of chalk-style paint, especially since I wasn’t going to distress this piece. I used 4 coats of Missouri Limestone Paint Company “January”, a pure white. You tend to need more coats when using white or very light colors.

But all is well as chalk-style paint dries so quickly. Once the paint coats had all dried well I sealed the base with several thin coats of Varathane Crystal Clear water based polyurethane. I never have had a problem with yellowing in the 6 years I’ve been using it.

The secret is thin coats and no drips or pooling. I use a round damp car wax sponge to put on a thin coat and follow it with a sponge brush if needed to clear up any drips or pooling. For long areas I go in one direction only and work quickly. You can’t go back and forth or overwork the sealer or you will have a mess as it dries so quickly.

And now…. drum roll ….. My finished “llama table!” 😉 What a difference, right?

A Vintage Rocker Updated For a New Generation

A friend had this family heirloom and asked me to update it for a gift for her great niece. The seat was no longer there. At one point this temporary red seat was added. The rocker was also a little wobbly and in need of some TLC.

I told her we could make it sturdy again, apply primer to block the red paint and keep it from bleeding through, paint it with the Missouri Limestone Paint Company chalk-style paint “English Bluebells” (color she picked out), and would weave a new seat using strips of fabric that would coordinate with the paint color. She was ready for the transformation and left it for us to give it a new life.

With repairs made, we cleaned, sanded, and cleaned again, then applied two coats of primer. It was then time to chalk paint. Since we primed, we only needed two coats of the chalk-style paint.

It was a beautiful summer day yesterday, so I painted outside. Chalk-style paint sure dries fast on a nice summer day.

Once paint has dried, I sealed it with Varathane water-based Crystal clear polyurethane in satin finish. I applied 3 thin coats.

It was now time to start weaving. I have woven chair seats before with fabric, This is my go to tutorial I follow each time. I hide the knots on the underneath side and at the end I apply hot glue to help the knots stay secure. I also like to spray the fabric with Scotchguard. http://firstadream.blogspot.com/2011/03/chair-weaving-tutorial.html?m=1

I chose a printed fabric that once scrunched together would all blend together for a pretty pattern.

Final reveal: I think there is going to be one happy little girl in my friend’s family as soon as she is old enough to start using her family chair.