The Interior Frugalista

July 25, 2017

Faux Snakeskin Wood Tray Stenciled With Stain

Did you know you can stencil with stain? I didn't until I gave it a try on a Faux Snakeskin Wood Tray.

But that wasn't the original plan.

Faux Snakeskin Wood Tray Makeover

The original plan was to repair the chipped wood, paint it brown, and decoupage the top with coffee napkins that I picked up at the dollar store.
Faux Snake Skin Tray Makeover Plan A

But no matter which way I tried to lay the napkins, the repetition in the pattern didn't line up nicely.

Onto Plan B for a coffee inspired makeover but before I get into the details this is what the tray looked like before...
Faux Snake Skin Tray Before Makeover

Faux Snakeskin Wood Tray Stenciled With Stain

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links so you can see what products I used or recommend to complete this project. What that means is that if you click on one of the product links, I may receive a small portion of any sales at no additional cost to you to support the costs of running this site. See my disclosure policy page.

Refreshing the wood

Instead of painting the wood I decided to refresh it with Saman Canadian Maple water-based wood stain.

Painting the base

To make the tray pop I painted the base with Annie Sloan Chalk Paint in the color Old White. Because of the dark stain underneath, I was expecting to have paint bleed but to my delight, there was none. It took two coats for full coverage.

I dry brushed old white onto the rattan wrapped handles as well.

Faux Snake Skin Tray After

Stenciling with stain

The plan was to use my Homestead Blend Coffee Stencil using brown chalk paint but then I wondered what if I used the stain I refreshed the tray with?

Faux Snakeskin Wood Tray Stenciling With Stain

And it worked and I'll tell you how.

The process is exactly the same as when stenciling with paint.
  • Dab the stencil brush into the water-based stain.
  • Offload the excess stain onto a paper towel.
  • When the stencil brush looks almost dry, pounce or swirl the brush in a circular motion until you get the desired coverage. 

Faux Snakeskin Wood Tray Stenciled

Protecting the top

Wait for at least 24-hours before applying a clear protective top coat over the stain. I used Clear Coat by Dixie Belle Paint Company.

The trick to applying clear coat is that you use a damp (not saturated) paint brush and apply a thin layer in just ONE stroke (do not use back and forth motions). It will be dry in an hour and repeat with a second coat.

Stenciled Faux Snake Skin Tray

I'm determined to find a project to use the coffee napkins originally intended for this tray. I have a few ideas up my sleeve so stay tuned. In the meantime, I think this beat up thrift store tray looks pretty darn good stenciled with stain.

Faux Snakeskin Wood Coffee Tray

If you like my Faux Snakeskin Wood Tray Makeover, please share it with a friend and/or save it on Pinterest.
Faux Snakeskin Wood Coffee Tray Stenciled With Stain
Here are some other tray ideas if using stain isn't your cup of Like this Rustic Homestead Blend Coffee Tray or this Large Thrift Store Coffee Tray. I also built a simple Farmhouse Coffee Tray and share step-by-step instructions on how to make it.

One can never have enough trays around the house, right? So would you give stenciling with stain a try? 

You will find this project linked to these fabulous Link Parties.

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July 21, 2017

Easy Handmade Demitasse Espresso Candle

This was such a simple project I almost didn't blog about it. But then I got to thinking I bet there are a lot of people out there who have odd numbered sets of cups and saucers. This is a great way to make that odd one stand up and get noticed.

With Summer BBQ's and dinner parties alfresco, these easy Handmade Demitasse Espresso Candles would make great hostess gifts for the coffee lover in your life.

 Easy Handmade Demitasse Espresso Candle

Easy Handmade Demitasse Espresso Candle

Lately, I've been enjoying a nice strong shot of espresso in the morning but I didn't have any demitasse cups to enjoy it in. I sent Mr. Frugalista on a thrift store mission (it's his favorite lunch hour past-time) to find a set for my morning ritual.

He found a cute set but unfortunately, there were only three but you can't beat the price. That was fine because really I only need one cup but having two comes in handy when sharing an espresso with a friend (hubby doesn't drink it).

Demitasse Cup and Saucer Set for Handmade Candles

What to do with the third?

Demitasse Handmade Espresso Coffee Candle

It was so easy to make and these are the supplies I used...

Materials to make a handmade espresso candle

I happen to have a 20 pack of IKEA Jubla candles in my stash, you know for emergencies. Well, this was one of those emergencies.

Melting wax for Handmade Demitasse Espresso Candle

Not having any soy or beeswax in my stash I did the next best thing and melted two of those Jubla candles. I've had this mini potpourri crock pot since the 80's and use it in the shop for this exact purpose. As the candles were melting I removed the old wick carefully with tweezers onto a sheet of wax paper.

I also saved a bunch of metal bases from burned tea lights. I strung a 4/0 wick through the bottom to use as the base for this candle wick.

To make my candle dark and smell like espresso when lit I added ground espresso beans from a K-cup into the wax as it was cooling.
Handmade Espresso Candle In Demitasse Cup

I had some wax left over after I poured it into the demitasse cup (using an old gravy spoon). Bonus, now I have a wax puck to use when doing wax resist on furniture makeovers.

If you look closely at the candle in the photo above you can see a little chunk missing from the top right.

Tip 1: Don't flip the cup upside down after you've made the candle. Ask me how I know.

Tip 2: Glue the cup and saucer together with E6000 glue BEFORE making the candle. 

Tip 3: How to easily remove old wax from candle holders

Did you know that if you want to easily remove old wax from candle holders (or anything for that matter) put it in the freezer for about 15 minutes? The wax will pop out like Grandma's teeth when she sneezes.

Handmade Demitasse Espresso Candle

If you like this Easy Handmade Demitasse Espresso Candle idea please save it on Pinterest and/or share it with a friend.
How To Make Easy Handmade Demitasse Espresso Candles
I think I'm going to look for a complete set of demitasse cups to turn into soy espresso candles for gifts considering they are so easy to make. I'll attach a pretty little card with my wax removal tip and they can be used later for their intended purpose.

Have you ever made your own candles? If so, I'd love to hear about it. If you have any helpful tips you would like to share, please leave them in the comments below.

You will find these projects linked to these fabulous Link Parties.

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July 19, 2017

Dollar Store Birdhouse Decoupaged With Napkins

A few weeks ago I shared my Mom's floor standing jewelry chest makeover. Remember how I decoupaged the sides of the drawers with napkins? If you missed it, you can see the post here at Jewelry Chest Makeover. I enjoyed the process so much I decided to try it again except this time on a simple dollar store birdhouse.

It all started when I went shopping at JYSK to buy bedding for my grandson's new toddler bed at Grandma & Grandpa's house. I barely got inside the doors when I noticed a display of pretty Summer napkins. I bought two packages, one to use at the dinner table and the other to decoupage onto something, eventually.

Then I remembered the birdhouse sitting all naked on our DIY Potting Bench.

Dollar Store Birdhouse Decoupaged With Napkins

You can see what the birdhouse looked like before and these are the pretty napkins I used to transform it.

Decoupaged Dollar Store Birdhouse Materials

How To Decoupage Dollar Store Birdhouses With Napkins

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links so you can see what products I used or recommend to complete this project. What that means is that if you click on one of the product links, I may receive a small portion of any sales at no additional cost to you to support the costs of running this site. See my disclosure policy page.

Materials List

Wooden Birdhouse (dollar store)
Mod Podge
Chalkboard Stand Base (dollar store)
Gorilla Wood Glue
Retractable Razor Knife
Small Sponge Brush (dollar store)
150 grit Sandpaper

Step 1 - Painting the roof

  • Painting the roof with layers of color is so easy. Start with a base layer of Everlasting white. 
  • Dip just the tips of the paint brush into the color Serene blue and with light pressure apply long random brush strokes. 
  • Repeat the previous step with the color New Life green. 

Painted Layers On Roof Of Decoupaged Birdhouse

Step 2 - Decoupaging with napkins

  • Before adding the napkins I painted the walls with Everlasting white. 
  • Most napkins are 3-ply and you will need to separate and remove the two bottom layers of paper.
  • See how the bird lines up with the perch? Line up the paper how you want it and with scissors cut a small slice to slide the perch through.
  • Cut the napkin a little larger than the birdhouse (as pictured below).
  • Apply a thin but generous coat of Mod Podge onto the face of the birdhouse.
  • Line up the napkin and let it gently fall onto the birdhouse. The less you handle the paper with your fingers, the better.
  • In the areas that don't have good contact, with very light pressure dab with your finger. Don't worry about wrinkles, it adds character.
  • You can see my napkin wasn't large enough to completely cover the front and so I cut a smaller piece of napkin and repeated the same process as above.

Napkins Decoupaged On Dollar Store Birdhouse

  • Continue the same process on the back of the birdhouse and let dry.
  • Trim the excess paper with a sharp retractable razor knife. If the blade is dull you risk ripping the paper. Of course, safety is key during this step - take your time and be very careful.
  • Repeat the same decoupage process on both sides of the birdhouse.
  • Once the Mod Podge is dry and after you've trimmed the paper, gently use 150-grit sandpaper to smooth any rough edges.
  • Apply 1-2 generous protective coats of Mod Podge over the paper. The key is to generously load the foam brush and don't go over the same area twice or you risk tearing the paper.
  • I also applied a coat of Mod Podge onto the roof to protect the paint finish.

Decoupaged Dollar Store Birdhouse with napkins

Step 3 - Adding a pedestal base

I had just the base of a dollar store chalkboard sign leftover from my daughter's wedding. It was perfect to use as a pedestal base on the birdhouse. I attached it with E6000 glue and once cured I painted it the same Everlasting white color.

You can see what happened to the top half of the chalkboard sign here in my post Rustic DIY Wedding Ideas. You'll find it hanging from my grandson's neck.

Chalkboard Base Repurposed for Decoupaged Birdhouse

I think the birdhouse looks so pretty and can't beat the price of a whopping $3 to make it.

Pretty Decoupaged Birdhouse

If decoupaging with napkins is something you'd like to give a try, please save my birdhouse makeover on Pinterest and/or share it with a friend.

How to decoupage a wooden birdhouse with napkins

If you've been following my blog for any length of time you know how much I love using birdhouses in seasonal vignettes. Remember the Pedestal Birdhouses for under $5 I made for the master bedroom? 

I used this birdhouse to create another vignette.

Decoupaged Birdhouse on bookcase vignette

You'll find this project shared at these fabulous Link Parties.

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July 13, 2017

12 Helpful Tips On How To Stencil A Wall

Does the thought of hanging wallpaper give you hives? If you answered yes, you're not alone. When we moved into this house every room had wallpaper or at least a wallpaper border - remember those? It took weeks to remove that dated mess and I vowed never would these walls see another roll of paper again. Don't get me wrong, I love a pretty papered wall, I just don't like hanging it. 

Then the master bedroom makeover happened...

...and one of those walls was screaming that it wanted to be bold and interesting and stand out.

So I did the next best thing and stenciled the wall.

12 Tips On How To Stencil A Wall

Being a dig right in before learning the how to's kind of gal, no surprise I ran into some snags. So today I'm sharing the mistakes and lessons I learned through trial and error.

Why? Because I want you, my fellow wallpaper avoiders, to try stenciling your walls as an alternative.

Stenciled Wall In Master Bedroom

And so it began...

Materials To Stencil A Wall

Disclosure: Affiliate links are included in this post so you can see what products I used or recommend to complete this project. If you make a purchase through the links, there is no extra charge to you and I may receive a small commission to support the costs of running this site. See my full disclosure policy.

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July 12, 2017

How To Make Wind Chimes From Thrift Store Dishes and Silverware

Are you like me and like to add a little whimsy to your outdoor living space? I hang mirrors and signs and collect garden angels and gazing balls for visual eye candy but needed something to drown out annoying traffic pollution noise.

I love the relaxing sound of wind chimes and how each one sounds different. I've had a lovely melodic set I believe called Corinthian Bells for many years in one corner of the yard. It was time to add another tone to the mix except these ones would be whimsical, unique and homemade.

DIY Silverware Wind Chimes

That's where thrift store dishes and silverware come into the mix and a trip to Goodwill. But my DIY wind chime project didn't come without some hiccups and I'll share more about those throughout this post.

How To Make Wind Chimes from Goodwill finds

Before I get into the deets on How To Make Wind Chimes From Thrift Store Dishes and Silverware, let me tell you why I used these particular accoutrements.

I'm so excited to be participating in the second installment of Thrifty Chicks. In case you missed our first challenge, on the second Wednesday of every month a few of my creative junk loving friends and I come together to transform, upcycle or repurpose a junk find based on a theme.

This month the theme is Kitchen and our task is to upcycle something either found in or to be used in a kitchen. If you missed our Chair Challenge in June you can catch it here in my post, Scandinavian Half Painted Chairs.

DIY Wind Chimes with thrift store silverware

If you've been following me for any length of time you know that I like to add an element of surprise to my pieces. For my wind chimes, I decided to add a quote around the rim of the plate.
|"In Summer the song sings itself" ~William Carlos Williams
Such a fitting quote for a wind chime, don't you think?

DIY Silverware Wind Chimes with Hand Painted Quote

How To Make Silverware Wind Chimes

Now let's get into the meat and potatoes of how I made my silverware wind chimes.

These are the kitchen items I found at Goodwill, minus the spoons and plus some salad forks - we'll talk more about that later.

Goodwill Finds To Make Silverware Wind Chimes
Disclosure: Affiliate links are included in this post so you can see what products I used or recommend to complete this project. If you make a purchase through the links, there is no extra charge to you and I will receive a small commission to support my blogging wardrobe with a fresh new set of pajamas (don't judge). See my full disclosure policy.

Materials List

Tools List

  • Needle Nose Pliers
  • Dremel (or Power Drill)
  • 6 mm Diamond Core Dremel Bit (or 6 mm Diamond Core Drill Bit)
  • 3/16" High-Speed Metal Titanium Drill Bit
  • Safety Glasses
  • Safety Gloves
  • Sponge 
  • Bucket of water
  • Masking Tape

Step 1 Glue Lid Onto Sugar Bowl

Let's start with the easiest step, gluing the lid onto the Corelle Coordinates Shadow Iris Sugar Bowl with E6000 Glue. Set it aside for at least 12 hours before handling it by the lid.

Sugar Bowl  for top of DIY Wind Chimes

Step 2 Drill Holes Into Dessert Plate

I thought the graceful white Mikasa French Countryside Salad Plate would be such a pretty base for the sugar bowl. I quickly learned there was nothing graceful about this super strong stoneware.

When trying to drill holes for the jewelry thread we went through three...let me repeat...three 6 mm Diamond Core Dremel Bits and about 10-minutes of sweat equity PER hole. Determination is my middle name and so an hour or so later the dang nine holes were finally drilled.

TIP: I recommend you DO NOT use stoneware or heavy porcelain dishes. Look for Bone China or Fine Porcelain if you plan on drilling holes. 

Let's talk a bit about safety first:

  • Make sure you wear safety glasses and protective gloves both when drilling holes in the plate and the silverware. We want you to finish this project and not wind up on an emergency room gurney. 
  • It's important the plate be cooled during the drilling process so you will require a bucket of water and a saturated sponge. Be VERY careful when using an electric power tool near water. You DO NOT want that bucket of water spilling. I suggest you have the pail of water in a separate area nearby and put the drill down before dipping the sponge into the water.
Drilling Holes in Plate for Silverware Wind Chimes
  • Flip the plate upside down (we want the good side of the plate to be seen when hanging high above in a tree).
  • With a marker place a dot in the center of the plate followed by 8 dots evenly around the plate about 1/4-inch from the edge.
  • Place a piece of tape over each dot (masking tape works better), this will give the bit some friction and stop it from sliding across the smooth porcelain finish. 
  • Use a 6 mm Diamond Core Dremel bit. If you don't have a Dremel you can use a Power Drill and 6 mm Diamond Core Drill Bit. 
  • Start by angling the bit to pierce through the tape and start the hole.
  • Once the hole is started, drill straight down into the plate. 
  • Make sure you are squeezing a water-filled sponge over the hole to keep the plate from overheating and shattering.

Step 3 Drill Holes Into Silverware 

In the photo at the top of this post, you saw that I had a bundle each of dinner forks and spoons. Well like the salad plate, the spoons were tough as nails and no matter what bit we tried nothing was piercing into those spoons. So we ditched the spoons and got a bundle of salad forks along with a large salad spoon for the center.

TIP: Use Sterling silverware rather than stainless as it is much softer to drill through.

Drilling Holes In Silverware For DIY Wind Chimes

Important: Again you want to wear safety glasses and protective gloves for this step. Those fine shards of metal are nasty.

Using a 3/16" High-Speed Metal Titanium Drill Bit, Drill a hole into the top of each fork. Be forewarned, the silverware and drill bit will get VERY hot.

Step 4 Transfer Quote Onto Plate

  • In PicMonkey (or software of your choice) type the quote and use the curve text option to create the graphic and size it to the diameter of the plate.
  • Print the graphic and cut each word (if they don't line up perfectly as a whole) and tape them onto the plate (as pictured below).
  • Next, slip a piece of carbon or graphite paper behind the words and trace them with a pen so they transfer onto the plate.
Typography Transfer On DIY Wind Chimes

Using a fine tip Sharpie Oil Based Paint Pen in the color Lime, go over each letter twice, allowing the ink to dry between coats.
Painting Quote On Silverware Wind Chimes

Step 5 Assembling Wind Chimes

  • Tie clear jewelry thread (or fishing line) into the holes of the silverware, cutting the strands longer than necessary (approximately 12-14 inches).
  • String a green bead about 1-inch from the top of the silverware and double looped through the bead to secure in place. 
  • String two purple beads (no need to double loop).
  • String a green bead and double looped through the bead to secure in place.
  • Set the plate on top of a bowl to raise it off the table.
  • Using needle nose pliers attach the silver jump rings through each hole and squeeze the ends tightly closed.
  • On the large salad spoon strand ONLY, string a green bead about 2 1/2-inches above the lower beads and double looped through the bead to secure in place.
  • String the thread through the center hole on the plate and tie the thread into a knot about four times onto a paper clip. Add a dollop of glue onto the plate and press the paper clip into the glue to secure it in place. Cut off the excess clear thread.
  • Next, tie the dinner forks onto every second jump ring with about a 2-inch strand of thread from the last bead. Tie it in about four knots and cut off the excess thread.
  • Repeat the same step for the salad forks except leave about a 4-inch strand of thread from the last bead. The key is to have all the fork tines hit each other and the large salad spoon in the center when the wind blows.
Assembling DIY Silverware Wind Chimes

Step 7 Glue Sugar Bowl Onto Plate

  • Glue the sugar bowl onto the plate using E6000 Glue (as pictured above) and leave it overnight to cure.
  • Avoid tugging the sugar bowl during the next step.

Step 8 Attaching the hanger cord

  • Attach a piece of white 1.5 mm 100% Nylon Cording to the sugar bowl handle. I think I used what's called a square knot or granny knot but I'm not 100% certain because I was never in Girl Guides nor did I know what I was doing when I tied the knot. You may want to do a Google search for this step.
  • Loop the other end of the cording through a key ring using the same knot (I couldn't tell you how I managed to make the same knot twice). Leave about a 10-11 inch strand and cut off the excess cording on each end.
That my friends is How To Make Wind Chimes From Thrift Store Dishes and Silverware to add some whimsy to your outdoor living space.

I'm quite pleased with how they turned out and they sound pretty too. I did a quick little video so you could hear them. There wasn't much wind so with the camera in one hand and a swipe with my other, this is what they sound like...


Told you it was a "short" video and tiny too.

If you like my DIY Silverware Wind Chimes please share them with a friend and/or save it on Pinterest.
How To Make Silverware Wind Chimes from thrift store finds

I'm very intrigued by what the other gals in our group are doing with these. Please join me in visiting their posts by pressing the links below.

Before Photos Thrifty Chicks Kitchen Challenge
How To Make A Coffee Bar Sign by Just The Woods
Sewing Machine Drawer Kitchen Organizer by Lora B. Create & Ponder
Silverware Wind Chimes by The Interior Frugalista
What To Do With A Collection Of Random Kitchen Do-Dads by The Vintage Cottage

You will find this project linked to these fabulous PARTIES.

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July 7, 2017

How To Turn An Old Door Into A Headboard

It all started with a visit to a local salvage yard one afternoon with a friend. Way at the back of the store behind a pile of interior doors, we came across two very old and heavy solid core five-panel doors.

How To Turn An Old Door Into A Headboard

Arriving in only a compact car we were determined to figure out a way to get those two doors home. Two middle-aged women on a mission and there was no such thing as it can't be done.

With the help of a very patient staff member who shook his head when he saw what we were driving, we managed to get those babies through the trunk, over the seats with a good portion of the doors hanging out the tethered trunk. Good thing I'm vertically challenged because the doors hung above my head as I slouched in the passenger's seat.

We must have been quite the sight driving down the freeway but with the wind in our hair and accomplishment coursing through our veins, we giggled and chatted the entire way back to our hamlet coming up with a plan on how we were each going to Turn Our Old Door Into A Headboard.

Old 5-Panel Door Turned Into A Headboard

This is that door after we got it home. Imagine two of them stuffed in that small car.

Old 5-Panel Door Before Being Turned Into A Headboard

It sat in the basement for several months until Spring when we could take it outdoors and get to work.

How To Turn An Old Door Into A Headboard

Prepping Old Headboard Door

Do you like my makeshift sawhorses? Didn't feel like hauling the ones from the basement workshop outside so these leftover drawers from the Twin Headboard Bench came in handy.

Disclosure: Affiliate links are included in this post so you can see what products I used or recommend to complete this project. If you make a purchase through the links, there is no extra charge to you and I will receive a small commission to support my blogging wardrobe with a fresh new set of pajamas (don't judge). See my full disclosure policy.

Materials List

Solid Core Door
Oak Plywood
3-inch Crown Molding
1-inch Decorative Trim
4 each 2x4 Lumber
Behr Ultra Satin Paint (Wedgewood Gray)
Homestead Paint Company Milk Paint (Sturbridge White)
Clear Wax
Dark Wax
Wood Glue
1 1/2-inch and 4-inch Wood Screws
220-grit Sandpaper

You will also need

Power Drill
Pneumatic Nail Gun
Table Saw
Miter Saw
Stud Finder

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