It’s Gettin’ Hot In Here: AC Window Frame

At the risk of seeming a little cheap, white trash or just plain tacky I’m going to share this project with you. This was pretty much Chris’ project. He did all the planning and all the work. All I did was lend an occasional hand.

It’s actually starting to warm up around here and those of us that live in the eternal rain have a hard time handling the heat. Of course when I say heat I really mean about 80 degrees. Yeah I know we’re wimps.

That being said we were given a window AC unit and Chris was dying to find a way to put it in our bedroom window. See the problem is that our windows slide horizontally not vertically which would leave a huge open space above the AC unit. Surprisingly, that kind of defeats the purpose of the AC unit when you’re just letting all that hot air in.

Painting Master Bedroom 6

After talking about how I really didn’t a cheap looking piece of plywood covering the window, Chris came up with an alternative. Thus our little fake window was designed and created.

First off Chris used the table saw to cut a slot in some 1×2’s to use for the frame. It turned out that the blade width was pretty close to the width of the plexiglass we bought to use as our window glass.

AC Window Frame 1

Here you can see the slots down the length of the boards.

AC Window Frame 2

Then he cut the boards down to the size he needed.

AC Window Frame 3

Before he started assembling and painting Chris wanted to make sure the plexiglass would fit so he cut that to size next.

We bought the plexiglass at Home Depot but I know Lowes carries it as well as probably other places. While we were picking out our sheet we noticed that there were cutting tools made for plexiglass. Since we thought they pretty much looked like a utility knife we opted to forgo buying a specific little tool.

According to the directions you are supposed to cut about halfway through the glass with the knife then snap off the excess. We found that it really helped to have me holding the ruler down while Chris cut.

AC Window Frame 4

Once it seemed far enough through Chris just snapped the cut edge off.

AC Window Frame 5

After he was happy with how everything fit together he used spray paint to paint the frame pieces. He decided to paint the frame just so that it would blend in with the rest of the window frame better.

AC Window Frame 6

We didn’t chose anything fancy just a white spray paint in a semi-gloss finish.

AC Window Frame 7

Once everything was painted and dried he assembled the frame together with the plexiglass in the middle. To start with he glued all four corners and used clamps to hold it together. Seriously when you have clamps this big I guess you have to find some use for them.

AC Window Frame 8

Once the glue dried he added a few little brackets just to add some strength.

AC Window Frame 9

Then he just slid the AC unit in the window and slid his new window panel in on top. He added a little foam seal around some of the edges just to ensure a little better seal around the window.

AC Window Frame 10

It’s actually surprising how the window seems to fit in. Of course minus the fact that there’s an AC unit and the one window is all the way open. I guess it’s all worth it just so we don’t have to sleep in a overly warm room.

Do you have any projects that you don’t love the look of but you live with just because they are practical?

Custom DIY Open Frame

Little by little I have been working on our master bedroom. Over time it’s actually starting to look something like the mood board I created.

We painted the room first and that made a big difference. Then I made the Malm inspired console table and switched up the duvet cover on the bed.

So when we left off the wall in between the bathroom and bedroom door was looking much less blank but it still needed a little something. To fill in this void I wanted to create an open frame to go around some picture frames that we previously hung on this wall.

Malm Console Table 7

First off I set out my frames on the floor to decided how big I wanted to make the open frame. I ended up going with about 3″ of space in between each frame and around all the edges.

Open Picture Frame 1

I picked out a molding that I liked the shape of at the hardware store. This one happened to be a primed MDF molding. I measured everything out and cut the boards to size mitering the ends. Since I have such a hard time getting a perfect miter I had to fudge things a bit. I ended up taping the frame down to the floor to keep it in place and I used wood glue to glue the ends together.

Open Picture Frame 2

Once the glue dried it was surprisingly strong. I used some caulking to fill in any gaps on the front side at the corners of the frame. Then I turned the frame over and screwed in a little L shaped bracket to strengthen the frame. The brackets came with a 5/8″ screw which were actually a little long. I found some 1/2″ screws to use instead and they worked fine.

Open Picture Frame 3

I wanted my new frame to match the frames I already had so I spray painted it a semi-gloss black.

Open Picture Frame 5

The first coat was a little splotchy but a few coats later and the frame looked pretty good.

Open Picture Frame 4

To hang the frame I nailed in two saw picture hangers on the backside of the molding. We then hung the frame on the wall using small nails.

To figure out the placement of the frames we used pieces of paper to  line everything up.

Open Picture Frame 6

It was such an easy project and I think it makes quite a difference to this set of frames as well as this side of the room.

Open Picture Frame 7

I love the way the blue paint is framed and can be seen through the open frame.

Open Picture Frame 8

The frames now fill up the wall nicely and look perfect over the new console table.

Open Picture Frame 9

Is anyone else creating some simple gallery walls in a little different way?

Malm Inspired Console Table

Last weekend while we were working on some projects I did another simple project for the master bedroom. I mentioned in my mood board as well as my summer to do list that I wanted to create a Malm inspired console table.

It was a really simple wood project. All it took was one 2×12-8′ board. The only cuts are two lengths of 28.5″ for the legs and the rest can be used for the top.

Malm Console Table 1

From there it was just a couple pocket holes to attach the legs to the top.

Malm Console Table 2

Since I didn’t add any other bracing I was hoping that the pocket hole screws would be enough to hold it all together and keep the table from wobbling back and forth.

Malm Console Table 3

Once it was together it was really sturdy. All that I did was fill the holes with putty and sanded it down as much as I had patience for.

Malm Console Table 4

Then I used a coat of primer as well as three coats of an off white paint to finish it. It didn’t come out with a perfect finish since it was just an inexpensive board but it did work pretty well.

Malm Console Table 5

For about $11 I don’t think I could have gone wrong. Now I have a little space to do some more decorating in the master.

Malm Console Table 6

For now I just “shopped my house” and threw together a few accent pieces. As usual I’m sure I’ll find some better things for this table in the future.

Malm Console Table 7

Oh hey what’s that behind me? I picked up a new duvet cover a few weeks ago from ikea. Little by little this room is starting to come together.

Malm Console Table 8

Has anyone else tried another version of this table or done something similar?

Round Two: Master Bedroom Mood Board

You may have seen recently that I shared my first master bedroom mood board. In that post I actually mentioned that I had already decided to not go with that color theme.

Since then we painted the walls in our room blue.

Master Bedroom 5-13-2013

Now that we’ve painted the room I’ve been thinking about how I can incorporate some of the things we already have in our room as well as a few other things to finish out the room.

Here is what I came up with:

Master Bedroom Mood Board

Of course some of the items are the same as the last mood board. You can find out more about 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, and 7 in this post.

Here’s the lowdown on the rest of the items:

8. This is Thistle Blue (MSL160) from Martha Stewart Paint which is the color we recently painted the walls.

9. I feel like there is something missing above our bed. I would love to diy something like this simple and pretty collage. Source.

10. With all the bold patterns I currently have all over the room I feel like I need a  more neutral duvet that I could dress up with colorful pillows. Source.

11. I already have a set of three photos which were hanging in this room before we painted. I’d love to dress them up a little by adding either a diy or finding and open frame to hang around them. Source.

12. I would still like to change up the covers on the mini couch. I was thinking about using this as the accent band around the pillows. Source.

13. This would be the main fabric for the couch cushions since it’s a little more neutral and matches the color them a little better than the current ones. Source.

14. A few weeks ago I picked up some new candles and I’m loving the scents and that they have and the lids to keep them clean. I have been loving this Spring scent and it also happens to be green which matches nicely. Source.

15. To go with the jar candles you can also buy candle holders which seems like a fun way to jazz up the candles and they work with the theme. Source.

16. I couldn’t help but throw in another green candle to go with the black and silver candle holders. Source.

17 and 18. Since the duvet is plain I want to add a few accents pillows in both of these fabrics, as well as more in number 12 to go on both the couch and the bed. Source and Source.

Now I’m ready to go out and find some things to finish out our room. I would be great to finally feel like I’ve finished at least one room in our house.

Anyone else feel like they need to give there bedroom a little design love?

Painting the Master Bedroom

We’ve been at it again.

In my defense the paint sale is still going on at Miller Paint so I went in and picked up my last sets of paints. To be honest it was 6 gallons of paint but I think I’m done for a while.  With 12 gallons of paint I really took advantage of the sale I guess. 🙂

As per usual we pulled everything out of the room that we could. Since the bed is so big and we didn’t want to take it apart we just left it in the room.

Painting Master Bedroom 1

A few days before we got paint I tested out some swatches on the wall. At first I wanted to find a wall and a ceiling color but I just didn’t like the combo of any of the paints shown below.

Painting Master Bedroom 2

In the end I chose the Thistle Blue, which of course is another Martha Stewart Color (MSL160). I liked that the Myrtle Blossom was lighter but I was afraid that it would be to purple. In the end I went with Thistle Blue since it’s actually the lighter shade of the Darkening Sky color that we used in  the kitchen.

Just like before I had the paint swatch color matched in Miller Paint’s Acro Pure in the eggshell sheen.

Painting Master Bedroom 4

I didn’t take any during shots but here’s the room after the first coat was finished. Don’t you love the crazy plastic covering over the bed?

Painting Master Bedroom 5

While we were in the room painting the cats were being oh so helpful as usual. Thanks guys for getting your hair all over the curtains.

Painting Master Bedroom 3

I bought 2 gallons of paint which actually ended up being just a little less than I would have liked. We weren’t able to do a full two coats which made me a little nervous. When we went to do the touch ups I was afraid that we would end up with streaks in the paint but it turned out pretty good.

Painting Master Bedroom 6

To be honest when I was picking out the color I was pretty skeptical about the color and not having a different ceiling color. I have to admit though I really like it.

Painting Master Bedroom 7

I love the contrast and the way the bed really pops on the blue walls.

Painting Master Bedroom 9

You may have noticed that I even switched out the couch cushions. They aren’t new they are actually just the back side of the other cushions. I do like the green especially with the walls but between those, the curtains and the duvet there’s just a lot going on.

Painting Master Bedroom 8

It’s hard to get a good read on the color since it does change a bit in darkness depending on the lighting.

Painting Master Bedroom 10

Here’s just another view to try and show what the paint color looks like.

Painting Master Bedroom 11

With Chris’ help we were able to go from putting down plastic to everything back in the room in one day. I think that was the fasted we’ve painted a room yet.

Now that the room is painted maybe I’ll work on finishing it up a bit. It really needs something on the walls and a more cohesive look.

Anyone else out there painting there bedroom lately?

In the Mood in the Master Bedroom

Have you ever been up in the clouds planning something in a perfect little world of your own only to be brought back down to earth when you show someone else? Well that’s what happened when I created a mood board for our master bedroom. So, even though I probably won’t use all of this any more I still spent some time collecting and putting all the items together so I thought it would be fun to share.

As you may already know I’ve been slowly working around the house painting different areas and working on the whole house color palette. One of the rooms on the list is our master bedroom. For a little while now I have been feeling like there is just something missing from this room. I think what it’s missing is cohesive picture of the final result. Here’s a reminder of what it looks like as of now.

Master Bed 2

Soon after we moved in a made the curtains and not long after that I made new cushion covers for the couch. I thought I was trying to be clever and maybe a little daring on mixing the patterns and colors but to be honest I just don’t love it.

One day while doing some of the usual surfing on Pinterest I came across this picture.

Honestly i think it’s a little weird for me to like this because to I don’t really like yellow, but Chris does. Although the more I thought about it I just loved the look of the greys and the sunny yellow accents started to grow on me. I finally just decided to start collecting some pictures of different pieces, fabrics and colors that I liked.

I put it all together and created the following mood board. Some of the items are new and some are items we already have.

Master Bedroom Mood Board

Here’s the list of sources:
1.  Ofelia Vass Gray Duvet Cover from Ikea. Source.
2. Black Hemnes Bed from Ikea (I don’t think this is available any longer)
3. White Hemnes Nightstand from Ikea (I don’t think this is available any longer)
4. Lillberg Couch from Ikea (Purchased years ago and no longer available)
5. Premier Prints Chipper Twill Storm Fabric. Source.
6. Premier Prints Chipper Twill Storm Fabric. Source.
7. Premier Prints Jo Jo Slub Corn Yellow Fabric. Source.
8. Martha Stewart paint in Zinc. Source.
9. Malm Occasional Table from Ikea. Source.
10. Aryd Block Candle Holder from Ikea. Source.
11. Skimmer Block Candle Holder from Ikea. Source.
12. Aryd Block Candle Holder from Ikea. Source.
13. Vift Yellow Block Candle from Ikea. Source.
14. Forsoka Biege Block Candles from Ikea. Source.
15. Wooden Storage Crate Plans from Shanty to Chic. Source.
16. Premier Prints Willow Yellow Fabric. Source.
17. Premier Prints Chipper Slub Corn Yellow Fabric. Source.
18. Premier Prints Chipper Slub Charcoal Fabric. Source.

First of all I wanted to paint the room Zinc like I did with the accent wall in the guest room. As for the furniture we already own the nightstands, bed and couch. For a while i have been planning on painting the couch frame white and I would really like to make new covers out of the fabric in #5. The one new piece of furniture would be to build my own occasional table similar to the Malm table and add some of the accents in the mood board.

I originally wanted to replace the curtains with something out of #6 and #7. This is the major thing that I probably won’t do. I did just make curtains a year ago and spent a decent amount of money and time, totally throwing those out the window and starting over seems ridiculous. Plus Chris told me that he really likes the ones we have. So there’s my call to come down from cloud nine and back to the real world.

So there it is, the mood board that I won’t end up using much of since it really doesn’t go with the curtains. Time for another round of trying to pick new paint colors and figure out how to fix those silly couch covers. I thought I was done with the paint color scheme but it just doesn’t look that way anymore.

Has anyone created a new look for a room your were excited about then decided it was not feasible and started all over?

Wooden Storage Box

I have been “working” on this box for a long time. I even mentioned it back when I created the Git ‘R Done list. I am proud to say that it’s finally finished.

Months ago I was looking for some kind of storage box or basket that I could put in our bedroom that would be able to hide blankets and other things. My criteria included that it must have a lid, be black and cost less than $40. Well I searched all over and wasn’t able to find anything that satisfied what I was looking for. I could find a brown basket with a lid or some kind of black basket that had no lid but never exactly what I wanted. As I looked more I found that what I really wanted was a wooden box, stained black that had a removable lid. I knew that if I was going to find something like this I would just have to make it.

I started coming up with ideas in my head and I thought that I would like it to be made of slats of wood formed into a box. I figured out what my maximum overall dimensions were based on the size of the couch and where I wanted to place it. I thought it would be nice if the box could also serve as a side table for the mini couch we already have in the room. I started sketching out some different options and finally came up with this.

Wooden Box 1

It was quite a puzzle trying to work standard board sizes to be used to make a box.

So there’s the back story onto the plans!

Materials List:

4 – 1×6 – 8′
1 – 1×2 – 8′
Kreg Jig
Pocket Hole Screws
Finish Nails
Hand Sander

Cut List:
4 @ 1×6 – 17.5″
9 @ 1×6 – 21″
6 @ 1×6 – 15″
2 @ 1×2 – 19″*
2 @ 1×2 – 13″*

*Cut these last, measure the inside of the box and subtract 1/2″ to get this measurement.

Finished size: 17.5″ x 22″ x 18″ (including lid)


First I cut all the boards to size. (Unfortunately I made a miscalculation when I first started and I was two sides short so this isn’t actually all the boards)

Wooden Box 2

Then I started by setting out all the boards grouped by side. I marked the boards for where I would need to drill the pocket holes. Unlike when I made the Wooden Quote Sign I made sure that the grain was altering direction on each board.

Wooden Box 3

Then I started assembling the boards together to create the sides, top and bottom panels. For the longer sides I used the pocket holes to attach the boards together. You will also notice that there is another row of pocket holes along the bottom, these I used when assembling the sides to the bottom panel. (You can ignore the extra two pocket  holes on the ends of the last board, they were a mistake) There is also another panel just like these for the bottom, they just don’t have the extra row of pocket holes.

Wooden Box 6

For the short sides I did the same thing. The only addition was that I did need the pocket holes that are on each end of the boards. These are used to attach the sides together.

Wooden Box 5

The last assembly was for the top. No extra pocket holes needed here.

Wooden Box 7

I took the opportunity with all the panels still separated to do all the sanding.

Wooden Box 4

Once everything was smooth I started assembling the sides together. I clamped the long side to the table and setting a short side next to it. I was careful to make sure all the extra pocket holes for the bottom were all facing the same way.

Wooden Box 8

Then I set the short side up and held it in place while I used the pocket holes to attach them together. While I screwed I was careful to hold the board in place and go slowly.

Wooden Box 9

Then I twisted it around, clamped it down and attached the other short side.

Wooden Box 10

Then I clamped down the other long side and placed the other sides on top.

Wooden Box 11

I’m pretty sure that I was only able to do this because I was using a smaller drill. If I would have used a larger drill it may not have fit inside the box.  Now that all the sides are attached together I set them on top of the bottom.

Wooden Box 12

At this point I squared up the sides to the bottom as much as possible. Then I started by screwing a few holes on opposite sides and then filling in with the rest. Holding everything as still as possible and continually checking that everything stayed flush.

Wooden Box 13

Now that I had the box together I put the lid on top just to see how it all looked.

Wooden Box 14

Next I prepped the box to be stained by wiping it down with a damp towel.

Wooden Box 15

I used Minwax Express stain in Onyx again. I followed the directions and this time I used blue shop towels to apply the stain. Towels were much better than the previous rags I had used. Once one became too saturated I could just throw it away.

Wooden Box 16

I let everything dry for at least an hour and then I came back to make the rail that will hold the top onto the base. This is where I measured the inside of the box and subtracted a 1/2″ and cut out the 1×2 at that size, tip to tip.

Wooden Box 17

Then I attached  the frame together using the kreg jig. Since the board are only 3/4″ thick I couldn’t really make the pocket holes without the hole showing on the side. Although since I knew this would be inside the box I didn’t care to much.

Wooden Box 18

The last thing I did was center the frame on the bottom side of the lid and attached it using the finish nails.

Wooden Box 19

Now the box is finished and read to go. All that had to be done is wait over night until the stain is fully cured.

Wooden Box 20

The I brought it inside, set it up and filled it up.

Wooden Box 21

The verdict? To be honest once it was in the room I just wasn’t very sure of it. It’s exactly what I was looking for and the color matched the bed frame well but there is still something amiss. I don’t know if it’s the color of the couch cushions or maybe the fact that I have still been meaning to paint the couch frame white. So all in all I think it will grow on me and it is doing it’s job by holding things.

Wooden Box 22

Anyone else creating something you just couldn’t find pre-made?

Keeping the Master(s) Private

One of the first things we wanted to do when we moved in was put up some curtains in our bedroom. Although the nice pink sheet that we had taped above the window was oh so pretty, I don’t think my husband loved it as much as I did.

I think we spent weeks looking at curtains in stores. We had the hardest time finding anything long enough for our 9 foot ceilings that we didn’t think looked cheap although not actually being cheap.

So, after all that looking I just decided to use Ana Whites Tutorial on making tab-top curtains and tweaked it a bit to make it work for our room.

It’s a little hard to see in the photos above but I used a brown/black suiting fabric for the main fabric. The striped center fabrics are attached to each panel and are a home decor fabric that have a tonal brocade print that you can see a little better in a closer up.

I think they turned out great. They are a good length (around 106″ i think) and have just enough gathers to hang nicely but not too much that they look like a prom dress from the 80’s. We hung them on a basic oil rubbed bronze rod that we found from Home Depot (Martha Stewart).

After the curtains had been up for a few weeks I added the curtain ties. I’m happy with the way they turned out and I think they finished the curtains well.

One important thing I learned on the way:

Always pin up your hem while the curtains were on the rod. The first time I attempted the hem by measuring and they ended up looking like a bad hair cut. Talk about disappointing.

Has anyone else attempted to sew their own curtains? Did you find dealing with the long fabric difficult? How did it go?