Monday, October 14, 2013

Laundry Day

Ok, ok, I know.  I fall off the face of the Earth and all of my adoring readers are out there wondering if I've stopped blogging or if I'm dead or if I've moved to a foreign country, and then I come back with a telephone table out of the blue with no explanation. Well I'm sorry. The truth of the matter is that I have 4 jobs and I'm going to grad school and am busier than a one armed paper hanger.

Plus I went to Disney World with my bestie. So I didn't have a lot of time for handying this summer.

Now that I'm back and hunkering down for the winter, the handying can commence once more. My next project came to be due to two little changes. Change number 1 is the weather. Part of hunkering down for the winter involved getting out my sweaters. I have hypothyroidism, and as a result, tend to be cold unless it's 80 degrees outside. Good thing I live in Texas right? So after the first cold snap of the season I can be seen sporting various sweaters and cardigans. Which really shouldn't be put in the dryer. My previous solution was to hang my sweaters on my dining room chairs. Which brings me to my next small change.  I have acquired a room mate. 

Isn't she the cutest thing?
So my previously private space of the dining room became a shared space. Plus, I always hate hauling my laundry through the house. So I decided to make a clothes rack. Insert inspiration photo from pintrest here.
If anyone knows the original source, let me know.

Ok, so we start with a trip to (you guessed it) Bart's Barn. Here we find some scrap 1x2 for he frame. Then we head to the big box hardware store for some dowels and hardware. Then we're off to dad's scrap pile where we find the faux paneling plywood for the backing. Everything gets cut to the appropriate dimensions and corners are mitered. I use my dad's drill press to drill holes about halfway through the frame.

Yay power tools!

Next, paint. I went with gray for the front, and purple for the back.  I had a can of purple paint in mind, and I got home and remembered I'd used the last of it painting something else. So I pulled out what I did have. And I was trying to choose between red and blue. At this point I smacked myself in the head, mixed the two and carried on with purple.

 Painting dowels is... challenging to say the least. So what I did was go ahead and glue the dowels in on one side only. They were all a fairly tight fit, so it wasn't difficult to get them to stand upright. Then I clamped the side of the rack to my picnic table bench, and went to town with my gray paint. 

And I can't think of anything informative or witty for this caption.
I used my corner clamps and some finishing nails to complete the frame around the dowels, adding glue in all of the holes for the dowels.

If it looks like a ladder, you're doing it right.

Then I added all the hardware. I used the magnetic latches for cabinets to keep it up when not in use. The rest is just d-rings, chain, and hinges.

Composite shot!

To hang it on the wall, I put up a cleat first, nice and level, to bear the weight of the thing, and so I wouldn't have to level the actual rack and hold it there while I drilled. I marked the studs in the wall, so I didn't have to mess with molly bolts, and got my roommate to hold it up while I just drilled four holes straight through to studs and screwed it in. Finished product shot!

Added bonus - it covers a hole in my drywall!

So now it hangs right next to my dryer, and I don't have to traipse through the house with wet clothes anymore! Huzzah!

Friday, October 11, 2013

Before and After - telephone table

Once upon a time, a magical device found it's way into each and every home in America. It allowed one to speak to people that were far away. It was large, clunky, and had to be plugged into the wall. It looked a little something like this.
That's called a rotary dial. You had to move it to make the numbers go.  Barbaric no?

And in the 50's, the golden age of expendable income and middle class families, people began to make whole pieces of furniture, just to put these devices on. They were called telephone tables. Some had a bench attached so that you could sit and gossip all day long about what the neighbors did this weekend. Some had drawers so that you could store things like a pen and paper for taking messages, (yes, there was a time before voicemail. Before the answering machine even. I've read about it in books.) phone books, (this was pre-google as well) important phone numbers, (before your phone remembered them for you) and the random odd or end. I found one such table in my grandmother's garage. It was very very sad, and it called to me to make it pretty again. 
Save me from the garage!

So, I cleaned it, and attempted to sand it down to the bare wood. I don't know if it was just shellacked to death or if 50 years of grease and grime got the better of me, but I ended up cleaning it, giving it a light sanding, and painting most of it simply because I couldn't get down to the bare wood. Either way, it looks pretty now, and is a handy place to store extra iPhone chargers, headphones, and the odd dog toy.

I shall never be obsolete!