Archive for the ‘Small Projects’

It all started with my guest bedroom, where I needed 10 plaster angels and I had moved from the place where there was I store where I could get one for $ 10.00. I was desperate and needed to find an affordable solution and found it on eBay, a vendor who sold molds. There was nothing to loose by trying and the rest is history, I got my 10 angles for about $ 10.00. total :)

Concrete angle

Next came the lion heads. I needed 12 for my pool patio and every place I looked, they were $ 30-40 each. Again, back to the eBay vendor, and sure enough I found my lion head.

Lion head

Every time I ordered something from that vendor, I would get an extra mold as a thank you gift for free. Every time I made something with concrete and molds, I would have some concrete left over and I would use it up by making the gift molds just to have samples and boy did that pay off. When I was finally ready to work on my kitchen backsplash, I had nice collection of samples to play with to come up with the design.

Here is what you need for your project:



Concrete, the kind without gravel and large rocks


and patience, as you probably will not have enough molds to make many tiles at the same time. I had 3 molds each for the type of the tile I used in my backsplash, so it took me about a month or little longer, to make enough for my project, making one set each day.

Once I had few tiles each, I took a photo of each type of tile and played in the photo editing software to come up with the backsplash design that I was happy with. I had many days to play around :)

Test design

While making my tiles, I had time to prepare the area for the backsplash. With my design, I did not want any outlets to interfere, so those got moved under the cabinets. Then the cement board, similar that is used in showers, was installed, so there was something solid to attach the tile to ,as the tile is heavier than regular tile.

Once I had enough tiles, the real fun started. I got to finally install the tile:


I used the same mix that is used to install ceramic tile, to install my cement tiles.

While the tile was being installed, I had to make up my mind what color I wanted the backsplash to be. I used some broken pieces to test all the acid stains I had, to see which one would work for this project the best.

Sample colors

In addition to moving light switches, we had some under cabinet lighting installed as well. This added some additional task lighting but also showcased the new backsplash.

Additional progress

Then on to staining and finally sealing with concrete sealer. Below photo has half just stained and half finished with sealer.

Half done

I stained the backsplash once it was all installed, including grout (same concrete) because I used one color for all the tiles and this made it simpler. If I would have decided to use multiple colors, I would have stained the tiles before installing. Sealed the tiles once before grouting, then grouted and sealed the whole project once more.

Here are some more finished project photos:

Stove side after

Stove side close-up

Bar side

Bar side close-up



   Posted by: Lilianne in Interior Projects, Small Projects

for another $ 15 dollars I added 3 decorative pillows to finish the look for the blue chair. I know that it might not be the best taste to keep talking about money, but I think that it gives some idea and encouragement, that pretty things do not have to be expensive and out of reach.
So here they are :)


and close-up:


As you see, I used some of the left over fabric from the chair, bought some flashy fabric, the fringe is from eBay (cents for the dollar compared to store prices) and pillows inside where on sale in WalMart. I bought 3 pillows and cut one of them half to make two small pillows. The other small one I used on an other chair I recovered:



$ 42.00 makeover.

   Posted by: Lilianne in Interior Projects, Small Projects

I inherited this chair:


It had been stored in the garage and in Florida hot climate nothing survives this, especially upholstered furniture. So only thing to do was to recover it with new fabric.

I gave myself a very low budget, as times are hard, but was able to come way under the budget because I got the fabric so cheap from WalMart, paid just $ 2.00 per yard. But lets not get ahead of us.


First I needed to take the chair apart and get the old, ruined fabric off. First came off the bottom cross shown above.


This was pretty much that held the whole chair together. During the process of taking the fabric off, I discovered that this was already a 2nd layer of fabric on this chair. This made my job so much easier.


I was able to use the fabric I took off as pattern for the new pieces. First I laid it on my tile floor to get an idea how much of the new material I needed. Later I also used it as my cutting board.


As I needed several pieces as two opposite pieces and not to by accident cut 2 the same side, I cut out one piece first and then used that as a pattern for the second one.


I also added additional batting to make the chair softer and more comfortable.


and even more so where it counts the most :)


Then it was time to sew the pieces together and put it all back together again.


As you will see from the finished photo, I introduced the middle button back to the chair. Getting this button there was the biggest ordeal of the whole project. I ended up using a knitting needle to get the whole through all this batting and fabric and used very thin wire to attach the button to the chair. You see here the wire stapled in place.


To assemble the chair, I had to do it in reverse order. First I put the cross back. Then I slid the chair back in and tightened all the screws.


I am very pleased with the end result. I think the button adds quite a bit to it. I have plenty of fabric left over, so my next plan is to make some decorative pillows to add even more charm to the whole ensemble.

Let me know if you have any questions about this project :)


Bar Counter wall rewamp

   Posted by: Lilianne in Interior Projects, Small Projects

Once the Great room ceiling was done


, the bar counter wall looked plain and ugly.


I decided to use same technique and materials to finish the wall like I did on the ceiling, to make sure that these two work together in the same room.


The designs was painted with the dark stain before the main stain was applied. The corbels were from eBay and I got an incredible deal on them. Everything was stained before assembled and afterward only some touch up was required. Here is the close up of the finished wall:



Front Door Grill

   Posted by: Lilianne in Exterior Projects, Small Projects

Since we built the house, the front door had been plain. I picked the plain door because I knew I wanted wrought iron grill and I wanted to do my own design. I also knew that many times going local is not more but often less expensive than ordering ready made from some place else.

Here is the door before:

Although I had an idea and drawing what I was thinking of achieving, the true designing happened at the shop on the table, playing with available pieces:

Originally I had not even dreamed of using glass accents. But as the supplier had Murano glass inserts available, I am a huge fan of Murano glass and they had the blue that ties into the fountain and the pool, I could have not been happier to incorporate the glass in my design.

I was lucky to find such great grafts people who were very patient and understanding in my guest for perfect door grills. In the end, I think the results are outstanding.