Polka Dot Succulent Planter

Happy Tuesday! Sorry we missed a post yesterday – the weekend was just too fun and I spent yesterday playing catch-up! I have been working on and building some pretty big projects that I cannot wait to share with you, including a huge project for my boys room and then I can do the full reveal! In the meantime, I felt like our little backyard picnic table needed a little “something” so I whipped up this fun little polka dot succulent planter and I am loving the white and gold!

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This is such an easy project and just perfect for beginners or a quick nap time project. It is also really easy to modify for your space. I used some pieces of 1×4’s and a 1×6 from my wood pile. To make this exact one here is a cut list:

Cut List:
(2) 1×4 @ 18”
(2) 1×4 @ 4”
(1) 1×6 @ 18”

You will need wood glue and a staple gun – or a drill and screws to build the box.

Attach the 4” pieces to the ends of a 1×4. Remember to use your wood glue – and staple the pieces together.  This will be one side and the ends.

Turn the piece on its side and glue all along the edge. Then staple your 1×6 (the bottom piece) on the side.

Glue once again along the bottom piece and attach your last side.

Now your box is built – it will look really familiar – almost like this shelf!

I knew I was going to be scuffing it up so I gave the edges a quick coat of Rustoleum Expresso.

Succulent Planter Box (10) copy

Then I gave the whole thing a good coat of Rustoleum Gold Metallic. This gold metallic pretty much rocks my world!

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Using my Silhouette I cut out a bunch of vinyl polka dots and placed them all over the box.

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Then I gave it a good coat of Rustoleum Heirloom White. When the paint was dry I pulled off all the dots.

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Then I took my sponge sander to the whole thing and roughed it up a bit.

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Because I knew I was planting dry loving succulents I didn’t drill any holes in the bottom for drainage… if you are planting something that needs lots of water – drill a few holes for drainage so you don’t ruin your roots.  I added some rocks to the bottom.

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Then my little helper added a layer of moisture control potting soil.

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I added all the plants – mostly Jade type succulents – and then filled in around each plant with the potting soil and was done!

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I love it!! I love the polka dots and the white and the gold – especially with the bright green of the succulents!

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These succulents are suppose to bloom with white flowers in the winter so I am excited to see that! This is my first go around with succulents so I hope I succeed and don’t kill them!


Easy One Hour Rustic Crate

Happy Friday!! Today we are sharing a quick project that I (amanda) built for The Crafting Chicks! Did you know that I am a contributor over there? I am! I  love those girls and it is so fun to work with them! The project I built for them is an an easy one hour rustic crate. This project is a great project if you are just learning to build and use tools.

Materials Needed:
1 1×4
1 1×10
Gorilla Glue
1” staples (or nails)

Tools Needed:
Miter Box
Staple Gun or Hammer
Tape Measure

Use your miter box and cut the 1×10 for your bottom and your ends. The length of the bottom is 16” and the ends are 9”. You can make them bigger or smaller if you would like to – the great thing about DIY is that you can make it how you want too!

Use your 1×4 and cut your sides to be the same length as your bottom piece – so I cut mine to be 16”. You will need four pieces for your sides.

Set up your ends to be about the same width apart as your bottom piece and add your gorilla wood glue to one end. Only apply the glue to one end so you don’t smear it on the other end.

Staple the glued end on.

Glue the other end and then staple it on as well. So you now have a “U” shape – like a bridge.

Now that the bottom and end pieces are glued and stapled you will lay the bottom and end pieces on their side and glue and staple the side pieces on. To do this – you need to apply glue to both ends of the bottom side piece.

You also want to glue the entire bottom side too – then line up the side with the bottom and staple it onto the end pieces.

Go up a couple inches and glue and staple the ends on the top side piece too.

Flip it over and glue and staple the side pieces to the other side as well. You can see that I left about an inch on the top and I love it like that but you can go to the top if you don’t. I like the character it adds.

Now we are into the project about 10 minutes! Sweet right? Now let’s paint it or stain it! I chose to paint this one!

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I used DecoArt Chalk Paint and gave it a coat of Yesteryear. I love this color – it is blueish gray and beautiful! I used my sander and scuffed it up a bit and then used a coat of clear wax to protect it.

I bought some 3” pulls from Home Depot and attached them and was done – Woot! Woot!

So easy and simple and perfect for so many storage reasons.

Like I said – this is a perfect project if you are just learning to use tools or if you only have a few minutes to build a project. If you don’t have a staple gun, use a hammer and nails – you will get the same rustic feel from the nails. Head out to Home Depot and pick up some supplies and whip up a couple of these – you will love them!

Have a great day and get building!


Tips for Installing Drawer Hardware

Hello Friends! I hope you all had a wonderful 4th of July holiday! Spencer finally had some days off work so we were finally able to do some really fun things together as a family! We hit up the waterpark, went out for dinner, stopped by the snow cone shack, bought and lit off some amazing fireworks, made smore’s in our firepit and camped in the backyard. Yesterday we escaped the heat a little bit and headed up to the mountains for a tin foil dinner picnic! It is always nice to take a little vacation from the mundane every day things – like cleaning!

Today I wanted to share with you some quick tips for installing drawer hardware. If you are just learning to build – this can be a little tricky – making sure everything is straight and flat and looks good.

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To make things easier for us and because Spencer used to install cabinets for a living – he created this awesome little hardware template. The template has a few of the common drawer hardware sizes and then gives you the holes for certain measurements. You simply line it up with the center of your drawer front, decide where you want the hardware to go and using an ale, press in the holes.

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Here you can see that I have marked my hardware with an ale and made the holes for where my pull will go.

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Using a 3/16 drill bit, drill out the holes where your marks are. Make sure you drill straight up and down.

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When your holes are drilled, flip your board over and using a 3/8 speedbor – notch out the back of your hole. You only need to give your drill one good squeeze because you only want the hole as deep as the screw head. Here are some great tips for using a speedbor. 

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Attach your hardware. Here you can see that the screws lie flat and don’t poke out at all. Now when you attach your drawer fronts to your drawers, they will sit flat and you won’t have a gap between your drawer and your front from the screws.

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Use the same measurement for each drawer and repeat all the steps and your furniture piece will be awesome!

For other posts in this series you can check out these:

Rustic Rolling 6-Drawer Dresser
Tips for Installing Drawer Fronts

Have a great Monday!


DIY Workbench on Wheels

A couple weeks ago I was scrolling through my instagram feed and saw a DIY workbench that the darling Shanty 2 Chic girls made – and just knew it would be perfect for me! I swung by Home Depot, grabbed my supplies and came home and built my DIY Workbench on Wheels.

A few weeks ago, Spencer and I spent all weekend cleaning out both of our garages… and organizing… and lovingly arguing about whose workspace is whose. He wanted me to work on his workbench and cleaned if off and organized it – and he even set up my kreg jig just for me! What a nice guy, right!? Sadly, I knew that would never work because that is HIS and always gets taken over with general contracting junk… blah!

Last Friday morning I got an idea for a project so I headed out to the workbench and found this:

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So I grabbed my phone, snapped a photo, texted Spencer telling him I wanted a workbench on wheels…went back up stairs… searched the plans and went to Home Depot!

This bench is an easy build  and I only spent a couple hours Friday afternoon building it. I had to get it done before Spencer got home! Just kidding… {sort of!}

I followed the plans and only changed a couple things. Instead of using my Kreg Jig (hence the reason I was making the workbench!) I just drove in 3” screws – I don’t care if they show – and I also used 1 1/4 inch screws to secure the top instead of brad nails… only because my screws were right there and my brad nailer wasn’t.

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I love everything about this workbench!! I love that I can roll it all around the garage and out into the driveway. I love the bottom shelf so I can store tools and supplies. I love how long it is and I love the height!

If you are looking for an awesome workbench to build – build this one!

Now I just need to finish up the projects in my garage so I can push it up against the wall — just like I promised Spencer I would!

Spencer actually really likes it too – but I think mostly he just likes it because I love it! He is also impressed I built it in two hours… while our littles played outside.


Easy One Hour Blanket Ladder

While at SNAP a few months ago, I attended a class taught by the darling Shanty 2 Chic sisters. They build all kinds of fun things and in the class they made a simple little blanket ladder. I loved it and knew that I could use one in my home too so this past weekend I whipped up my version of the easy one hour blanket ladder.

Easy One Hour Rustic Blanket Ladder

Supplies needed:
(2) 8 ft 2×4’s
3” screws
a miter box
a drill

Cut List:
2 at 54”
4 at 13”

I found this 2×4 in my supply that had a cut in it from a different project and decided to use it. I cut it on the mark, which was 54” tall, and cut out two 13” pieces as well. I did the same with the second piece.

Easy One Hour Rustic Blanket Ladder (2) copy

I did cut one end on each piece at a 15 degree angle so it would lean back nicely against the wall.

I lined up the side pieces and mark them together so each side would be the exact same. I made the first line about 3 inches from the top and then marked the width of the board (3.5”) and then marked 10” and started the pattern over again.

At first I was going to use my Ryobi airstrike nailer and wood glue and glue the rungs on straight – but then I decided to twist the rungs a little bit for some character. Spencer came out and asked what I was doing and I told him I was building a blanket ladder and he told me that I probably needed to use a drill and 3” screws because our kids would climb on it – he was right!

I turned the ladder on the side and making sure my rungs lined up with my marks on the inside – I pilot drilled and used my impact driver to drive in the 3” screws.

You can see in the above photo that the first side is done. I simply flipped it over and did the same thing on the other side – making sure the rungs line up with my marks.

You need two screws for each rung on each side so the rungs don’t twist and turn.

Usually I take all the photos so it was kind of fun to find this picture that Spencer took – see!! I totally built by myself! Woot! Woot!

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I painted it with DecoArt Chalk Paint called Yesteryear. Then I sanded it and roughed it up a bit and applied the DecoArt Clear Cream Wax. I love chalk paint because it is super easy to apply and it dries really quick!

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Then I leaned up against the wall, added my blankets and was done!

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I love that we can fold them and “display” them instead of throwing them over the back of the couch or hiding them in a basket. All three of these blankets are from IKEA – but it would be really cute and special if you had some heirloom blankets to display!


Rustic Rolling 6-Drawer Dresser

Happy Monday Morning! I am super excited to share my latest project with you guys! If you have been following me on Instagram you have seen a few little sneak peeks! I have been working on a room for my son’s and after I built the headboard and footboard, I knew I wanted a dresser to match.

I measured the bed and measured the room and found out that I would need it to be about 50” long… and it had to be raised up because of the heat vent in the floor – I was in quite the predicament. I knew I had to build a dresser so I turned to Ana White and found this dresser with wheels.  I made some modifications but am pretty much in love with this rustic rolling 6-drawer dresser!

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The plans call for this dresser to be 62 1/2” long – but that was way to big for my space so I cut it down by 12” and took 6” off each drawer and it fits perfect! That is the best thing about building things yourself – you can make them how you want them!

The dresser drawers are nice and sturdy. I built them using Gorilla Wood Glue and our Ridgid Stapler. The glue holds everything nice and tight and I am not worried about them falling apart!

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I asked Spencer for a Kreg Jig for Mother’s Day and he delivered one a few days early! It is awesome because I didn’t have to putty a thing! I simply used my wood glue and pocket screws and built the whole thing without a hitch!

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After it was assembled, I used Minwax Classic Gray and stained the whole thing. Then I sanded it down a bit more to give it more of a rustic feel.

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I love Classic Gray! It is such a pretty color and I am so glad I chose that stain for this room. It is perfect!

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I added some corner braces like the Shanty 2 Chic girls did in the tutorial and love the characteristic that add.

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I found these rustic looking pulls at Home Depot and think they are the perfect match.

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Even though I trimmed off 6 inches of drawer space, the drawers are still deep and big enough. I am loving all the space.

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I also love the character and functionality the wheels give the dresser. It is really easy to move all loaded up and it lifted up from the ground so blocking the heating vent won’t be a problem. The plans call for 6” casters but I bought 5” swivel casters from Home Depot and they work awesome.

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In order to get some good photos of the dresser I had to move it around the room a little bit and push it up against the opposite wall – the wheels made it so easy to move – but really the dresser will go along the wall with the window in-between the boys beds.

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But that window makes it almost impossible for me to get a good “money” shot –

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Their room is coming along so great and I only have a couple more projects and then I’ll do the big reveal… so keep reading!


If you liked this building project you might also like:

Build A Cedar Picnic Table (106)ab copy
Build a Cedar Picnic Table

2 x 4 Chunky Farmhouse Table-84 copy
2X4 Chucky Farmhouse Coffee Table

Knock-Off Pottery Barn Emmett Bed  (22) copy
Knock-Off PB Kids Emmett Bed

Easy One-Hour 1×6 Floating Shelf

How to Cut a Wide Board with a Miter Box

Sometimes you have the right tools and sometimes you don’t. Spencer and I have quite the collection of tools – but we still have a wish list… and one of those wish list tools is a sliding miter box. I would love to have a really nice miter box with a huge blade on a slide so I would be able to cut though wide boards – but we don’t so we have little tricks to help us! Today I want to show you a little trick to teach you how to cut a wide board with a miter box.

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This board is a 1×10 – which is really 3/4 x 9 1/2 – and as you can see, it is too wide for my miter box.

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I don’t want the edge to be choppy like the one below and would like a nice straight line – but don’t want to go through a lot of trouble to get it.

The first step is to measure your board and cut it clean through.

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The front edge will still be uncut –

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Flip the board over and withOUT starting the blade, put the blade in the cut to make sure the blade and the cut line up perfectly.

Hold the board perfectly still and tight and lift up the blade. Start the blade and finish cutting the wood! You will have a nice clean line and your wood will be cut all the way through!

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Nice right!? So if you have a miter box with a blade not quite big enough – flip the wood and get started on your projects!

If you liked this post, you may also like:
How To Use A Miter Box
How to Use A Tile Saw
How to Use a Table Saw
How to Use a Skil Saw


The Difference between a Pin Nailer, Brad Nailer and Stapler

In finish carpentry work – like board and batten, base and casing, trim, bead board or wainscoting of any kind – there are certain tools that make the job so much easier, but they also get confused one for another – so today we are going to clear up misinformation and talk about the difference between a brad nailer, pin nailer and stapler!

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Each gun looks very similar and you use the “nails” on the inside for similar things but they are each different (I use the word “nails” very loosely.)

Brad Nailer

brad nailer

The brad nailer is probably the most common finish nail gun. If you wanted to buy a finishing gun, this would be the one I would recommend. Spencer and I have the Senco Brad Nailer and we love it! It is one of my most favorite tools.

The brad nailer uses brad nails. Brad nails are a lot of thin nails lightly glued together and have a flat head. It sort of seems like the nail is bent over at the top.

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They come in a few different sizes – we use 2” for base and casing, bead board, bead board – all your finish carpentry work. We use 5/8” for decorative molding on cabinets, toe skins and finish ends on cabinets. We use 1” for crown molding.

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Pin Nailer

senco pin nailer

The pin nailer is the least used nail gun – We have the Senco pin nailer and it is pretty tiny compared to all the other nail guns. I have never used it. Spencer uses it for one purpose really and that is to nail up white crown molding on cabinets.

Pin nails come in a sheet and are lightly glued together – but they do not have have a head. They are completely straight and really, really thin. When you shoot these in, you can barely see a hole – so you don’t have to putty – but they also barely hold anything.



ridgid stapler

The stapler is your furniture building gun! We use this Ridgid bad boy to help us with our furniture builds. Because it is a staple it has a more sturdy hold and the material (wood, MDF) won’t come undone as easily. Do NOT use this gun for finished carpentry stuff. The staple has a larger head than the brad nailer and will leave big holes in your base board or board and batten and will be really crappy to putty.

The staples are called “narrow crown staples.” This does not mean you use them for crown molding! They are called this because the top of the staple is rounded instead of straight across so it sort of looks like a “crown.”

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Please note: Each one of these is used to secure your material (wood, MDF) until the wood glue is dry. Please do not assume that just because you shot a few brad nails in that you are good to go – your project will be weak and will probably fall apart. You NEED to use wood glue. The glue is what holds the project together. We recommend Gorilla Wood Glue.

All of our guns use an air compressor but they pack a lot of punch and we love them. I would totally invest in a brad nailer if you do your own finish work and if you like to build – buy a staple gun. You will love them too!


How to Countersink a Screw with a Speedbor

Spencer and I have built quite a few things together and he knows a lot of great tips and tricks for getting things to work the right way. One tip for drilling and screwing wood parts together is to countersink a screw.

There are a few reasons why someone would want to countersink a screw but the two most common reasons are: You want your screw to be level with the wood or You need your screw to reach a little bit longer to screw the wood together for a tight fit.

Sometimes you may need to countersink a 1/4 of a inch and sometimes you may need to countersink 2 inches!

Whatever the reason you need to do or whatever the depth you need, you will want to use a speedbor to drill a countersink hole. Using a speedbor, in our opinion, is the most simple way to countersink – and it elements the need to pilot drill, just make sure you buy good screws.

Spencer and I have this set of speedbors that we purchased from Home Depot.

When we drill a countersink for a screw we always us the 3/8.

Drill A Countersink Hole with a Speedbor

Attach the speedbor tightly to your drill.

Poke the top of the speedbor into the wood.

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Pull the trigger and start drilling. You need to go at a pretty high speed with a fair amount of pressure. Depending on the depth you need, if you go to slow you won’t be able to drill and without pressure you may burn your wood.

Drill straight down as far as you need to go. In this picture I had drilled down a little over 2 inches.

Back your drill/speedbor out and you will have your hole!

Now, you simply insert your screw into the hole and screw it into your other piece of wood and tighten it up!

Use wood filler to fill the hole, if you desire, and you are done.

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Tips For Using A Skil Saw

I am gearing up to show you guys the progress I have made on my storage closet, but first I wanted to share some tips for using a skil saw – a skil saw is also known as a circular saw. When it comes to tools for some reason, this tool always intimidated me the most. With all the tools I have used, I’m not sure why, but probably because I just don’t use it very often. This past summer, Spencer gave me some good pointers and I wanted to share them with you.

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Spencer and I (meaning mostly Spencer) use this skil saw to cut material/wood when we don’t have access to a table saw or when we have a simple cut to make. This saw is not for the faint of heart and should be used with caution as it is all to easy to be accidently injured. 

Set the Blade Depth: You will want to set the blade depth so that when the blade cuts through your material/wood there is minimal excess blade on the bottom. This helps prevent injury – we like to keep our fingers around this place! You set the blade depth (and angle) with two adjustment levers/screws. Make sure these are set before you plug the saw in or pull the trigger. 


The Fence: The fence is a guide that allows you to cut consistent strips or an exact width.

Squeeze the trigger to start the blade and make sure you have a nice firm grip on the saw. Slowly move into the material and keep a nice even forward movement when cutting. You will need to practice a steady hand to guide the saw and keep it from wandering from side-to-side. DO NOT move the saw backward while the blade is running. This could cause the blade to jump and cause you harm.

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Wear your safety glasses! This saw shoots out dust like crazy.

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When you set up your material to cut, make sure you prop it up with another piece of wood or a saw horse or something. You don’t want to cut into the cement/floor. You also want to make sure your blade is clear of whatever you use to prop up your material.


Every once in a while the blade will bind up. Simply take your hand off the trigger to stop the blade, let the blade come to a complete stop, pull the blade out, replace it a couple inches back of where is bound up, start the blade once again and keep on going.

Obviously, practice and practice and practice on pieces that don’t matter so you can rock it when you cut something that does matter! Go slow and watch your fingers and if you get in a bind – stop the blade and you will be just fine.

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