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NEW Pattern available! Toddler Fishing Game!

Monday, July 24, 2017
I have a new pattern in my Etsy shop!  

This fishing game is perfect for that toddler (or big kid) in your life!

Singer 111w152 Industrial Sewing Machine Project

Tuesday, July 11, 2017
Remember the Singer 31-15 I fixed-up last year?  I never thought I'd sell it - I've loved it so much (to use and look at)!  I got the itch for a walking foot machine, however, and after seeing one advertised for $200 on Craigslist with some issues I figured I would go and test it out.  The guy said it had tension problems and wasn't feeding fabric.  I took my chances and offered him $150.

The machine itself looked to be in fine condition with no rust or broken parts.

 Some obvious problems: the table top was heavily bowed - about 1" in the center - from the weight of the motor and machine combined.  The vinyl layer on the table top was bubbling and someone had screwed several screws over to hold it down.

   I wasn't quite sure what was wrong with the machine not feeding but I saw that the bottom shaft that is connected to the feed dogs wasn't turning. It ends up being that the safety clutch was disengaged.  A simple push of a button on the bed of the machine re-engages it (I didn't know this before looking into it, though and my husband helped remove it so we could get a better look at it, lol)!  Here's a great video that explains how it works.

Bathroom Makeover on a Budget - 10 Days

Friday, June 30, 2017


Welcome to the boys' bathroom!  I decided it had been neglected for long enough.  It used to be the ugliest room in our house - now it's the nicest (& cleanest)!  I did 85% of the work while Mr. Toddler was napping and it took approximately 10 days and $170 dollars.  Wahoo!

1927 Victrola Granada Record Player Restoration (Victor Talking Machine)

Monday, June 5, 2017
I just happened to be searching "record player" on Craigslist to see if there was anything worth buying (I used to have a table-top player and have always been interested in getting another one).  To my surprise this old thing popped up in the search.  It was listed for $10!  I thought surely it must have been taken already because the listing was over 20 days old.  I tried talking myself out of it after thinking about how much work I'd have to put into it but everything in me said I MUST have it.  I knew I would regret not getting it!  It came with 4 full binders of records, too!

The current owner said it was his Grandmothers who had previously stripped the finish off the cabinet and it had sat a long time in a shed exposed to heat, cold and humidity.

Upon inspecting it I saw that it was worse off than I thought.  The wood was very dry and brittle - I call it thirsty wood!  The veneer was peeling off in nearly every place and the legs were in pieces and had open cracks where other pieces were glued together to create the posts.

It took me about 6 days of non-stop work to complete.  It was so exciting to see everything come to life during the process!

Let me share the BEFORE and AFTER pictures with you before I tell you about the restoration.
(This is my favorite part!)


Craftsman 101.06242 Lathe Restoration & Table Build

Thursday, May 11, 2017
When I saw an ad on Craigslist for this lathe I knew immediately it was the one for me.  It was a good price but I knew it would need a restoration (and sturdy table built).

It took me a few weeks to complete everything and I'm so excited it's finished so I can stop thinking (and dreaming) about it.

Everything was in great condition (besides the obvious cosmetic issues) and the only thing missing was the tailstock center.  I kept everything original on the lathe except for buying a live center, new v-belt and adding wing nuts to the tool rest and tailstock for easier adjustments.

BEFORE and AFTER pictures are my favorite!
Let me share some with you!


New Miter Stand and Rolling Carts (Garage Clean-Out)

Saturday, April 29, 2017
I'm going to do something terrible.  I'm going to show you how bad my garage can get (and I even creep onto my husbands side, too)!

This is MY side of the garage:

Something had to be done.

I first turned my attention to this huge-massive table the previous owners left.  At first I was excited to have a large work table but after a while I realized it took up too much space and didn't provide much storage space.  I had my miter saw on it but large boards would hit into the wall and it was a magnet for junk to pile on.  (Take note of that cardboard box full of old drawer slides on the shelf - they've been bumming around for a few years and I finally put them to use!)

I was excited to take the table apart and run the boards through my jointer/planer to make something else out of them.

I saw this system that Ana White made and I knew it was what I needed!

I'm pleased to say that I used all the wood from the old table (except the MDF table top) for my new miter stand and rolling carts.

Cricut Cutting Machine

If you haven't heard of a Cricut cutting machine you don't know what you're missing!  I've mentioned about my Cricut a few times in other posts and I thought I'd share some more projects with you (I use it a lot)!  I had actually never used one before I got mine.  I found mine used for $100 and it was a great buy!  I had to buy cutting matts, blades, vinyl, paper, markers, tools and a few cartridges to go with it and that added up fast!  Now that I have everything the only costs is replenishing what I run out of.

Easy Sewing Tutorial - How-to make pants into shorts (never buy shorts for your kids - AGAIN)!

Monday, March 27, 2017
 
Can you imagine having 4 boys and never needing to buy shorts?  Wouldn't that be wonderful!?

It looks something like this!

New Dog = Less Projects for me!

I haven't been able to do projects very much this last month and a half because we got a dog!  I didn't expect her to be all-consuming of my time.  It's getting better as she's adjusting to our home and learning to chill out and lay down/relax.  Between walking her, playing with her in the yard, brushing her, cleaning up after her, worrying about her chewing something, making sure she's not going potty in the house, etc I don't get much accomplished (just remember I have an active toddler at home, too)!

Her name is Heidi and she's a 15-month-old German Shepherd who came to us with no training and used to living outside.  She's a sweet gal and really good with the kids, especially our little toddler.  She's smart and we're both learning the in's/out's of training.

This was my first attempt to do a project in the garage.  If she wasn't right under my feet she was pushing her slobbery squeaky toy on my leg (we're working on her not doing that).

Needless to say... I'm super antsy to get things done but am trying to be patient :)

DIY - Make Your Own Wood Storage Bins + TV Armoire Renovation

Thursday, February 16, 2017
 I made some wooden bins that would fit perfectly on the shelves and doors of this old TV stand and took pictures of how I did it so YOU can do it too!  They're easy peasy and super inexpensive!

I'll also show you how you can turn a TV armoire into a place where you can store and organize whatever you want (pantry items, craft supplies, clothes, games... you name it)!

BEFORE and AFTER:

How-to Add a Switch and Grounded Wire to Old Motor (Update Your Shop Tools)!

Friday, January 27, 2017
Perhaps the biggest difference (and most important) part about re-storing my old drill press was updating all the wiring.

I've read horror stories about these old, all-metal machines carrying voltage through them and going straight to the person using it (because the machine wasn't grounded).  I certainly don't want to die so it was a huge priority to make this drill press safe before I could use it!

Also, I don't like the idea of plugging a tool in to turn it on so I wanted to add a switch.  I wasn't able to find any information on how to add a switch/grounded wire to a shop tool so I read a lot of electrical sites, forums and most importantly - I talked to my dad.  I wanted this thing to be "code" and for it to be done RIGHT so I can show people how to do it themselves.  (See disclaimer below)

This is the state I bought it in.  It looks like someone tried to add their own switch by roughing in an old lamp cord and wrapping the ends with a wad of electrical tape.  People, people.

The idea is simple, really.  To add a switch you need to have the hot wire 'interrupted' and that is done by having the hot wire connected to the switch on both ends - when it's flipped on/off the hot wire is "connected"/"disconnected".  

Delta Homecraft 11-120 11" Drill Press Restoration & Re-wire

Thursday, January 26, 2017
For the last month I've been looking for a drill press and band saw on Craigslist to add to my shop.

When I saw this little beaut it just felt right.  I e-mailed the guy to see if he could budge on the price and I got it for $50.

I honestly didn't know much about drill presses a few weeks ago because I had only used one a handful of times.  I was hoping it would be larger than what it looked to be in the pictures and I was glad to see that it was a good size - and it's a heavy little bugger (I can barely tilt it up from laying down)!

I didn't test it before I bought it because the wiring was cr-aaa-zy!  Seriously, someone just wired an old lamp cord to this thing and wrapped a bunch of electrical tape around the exposed wire ends.  I honestly don't get it.

I'm not going to do an in-depth post about how I re-stored my press because I mostly want to focus on how you can add a switch and a grounded wire (posted here).

But first - BEFORE and AFTER pictures of this machine!

DIY - Tutorial for Making a Basic Entryway Table

Hey there!  I built this entryway table last month just before Christmas and I am FINALLY getting around to posting about it.  Truthfully, I've been so busy with a gazillion projects I hardly have time for anything!

 Anyways - let's get to business.  The options are endless for designing a table but I wanted mine to be simple, functional and to use what wood I had on hand (three 2x4x10 boards).  Wait. What?  3 boards!?  YES!

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