Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Veggie Garden Markers

The one thing that our new veggie beds was missing were garden markers.  So, I decided to be creative and make some based on what I had on hand!

First, I started out with some leftover lattices from our countless board and batten projects.


Using our miter saw, I measured and cut down these lattices into 25 different pieces at 3" long each.  I sanded them afterward to avoid any splinters.


Then, I used some leftover paint from our living room and dining room to give them some color.


Even though I don't have the best handwriting in the world, I used a Sharpie to write the names of every vegetable and herb we have in our garden beds.


After digging around in our garage, I found some 3 1/2" galvanized nails.  They'd do the trick!


I glued one nail onto the backside of each garden marker using super glue. I pressed the nail in place for a good 20-30 seconds to ensure a tight bond.


Almost done!


Then, I gave each marker two coats of polyurethane to help with weatherproofing.  


I also stuck each marker into a foam board as the polyurethane dried. That was a lifesaver.


Now, here they are in the veggie garden beds!





Not bad for an easy Sunday project, right?



Hopefully these markers will hold up this year with all of the rain we've been having.  I feel like our garden beds are finally legit.  All we need now are the actual veggies!


Hope you like them as much as Mac does!



You may find me linking up at these fantastic parties:

Monday: Boogieboard CottageC-R-A-F-TCraft-O-ManiacDIY Home Sweet Home,  Get Outta My Head PleaseThe Girl CreativeMad in CraftsMaking the World CuterOur Delightful HomePolish the StarsSerendipity and SpiceSew Can DoSkip to My LouThrifty Decor ChickToo Much Time on My HandsTuesday: A Bowl Full of LemonsCherished BlissCoastal CharmConfessions of a Stay at Home MommyFunky Polka Dot Giraffe,  I Gotta Try ThatI'm Topsy TurvyJillify ItThe Kurtz CornerMommy By Day Crafter by NightNap Time CreationsNatural NestersNot Just a HousewifeSugar Bee Crafts,  Sweet Little GalsTales of a Trophy WifeTip JunkieToday's Creative BlogWednesday: Adorned from Above, Free Pretty Things for YouGinger Snap CraftsHome Happy HomeIt's Just Called SpicyJAQS StudioLet Birds FlyThe NY Melrose FamilyRae Gun RamblingsThe Sasse LifeSew Much AdoSew WoodsySomeday CraftsSouthern LovelyThursday: A Creative PrincessA Glimpse InsideCrafty, Scrappy, HappyHouse of HepworthsJust Winging ItMade in a DayThe Shabby Creek CottageSomewhat SimpleThrifty DecoratingYesterday on TuesdayFriday: 2805The Answer is ChocolateBacon Time with the Hungry HypoCreation CornerFingerprints on the FridgeThe Grant LifeHappy-Go-LuckyJust Us FourMom 4 RealMy Simple Home LifeNot So Functional HousewifeNot Your Ordinary RecipesOne Artsy MamaPerfectly ImperfectThe Rooster and the HenSimply DesigningTatertots and JelloWhipperberryYoung and CraftySaturday: Be Different... Act NormalCandace CreationsFunky Junk InteriorsIt's OverflowingIt's So Very CheriNutmeg PlaceSunday: The Crafty CowgirlEmbellishing Life with Homemade GoodnessFlamingo ToesG*RatedNifty Thrifty Things

Monday, May 20, 2013

DIY Kitchen Backsplash

I've been wanting a tile backsplash in our kitchen since we first moved into the house, but kept putting it off because the thought of installing it ourselves intimidated me.  Little did I know that installing tile is pretty easy.  It's the perfect weekend project!

First, choose your tile.


We found that the following tools helped us out a lot during the installation.  They included a notched grout trowel, mosaic tile cutters, and glass tile nippers.


Then, clear the countertops, remove all light outlet covers, and bring the stove or range away from the wall.  Scrub the walls with a wet paper towel to remove all food and grease residue.





You're ready to begin!  We chose a pre-mixed floor and wall adhesive from Lowe's.  Using the trowel, scrape on about 1/4" worth of adhesive across the wall.


The easiest thing to do is to work in small sections no longer than 1 or 2 feet across.  Apply the tile sheets one at a time and press down on it for a few seconds to ensure that it adheres properly to the wall.

For any small areas, especially those between outlet covers, trim down the tile sheets using scissors.  This will make things a lot easier for you while installing the tile.  If you need to actually cut the tile, the mosaic tile cutter or glass nippers will slice through them safely and easily.



While applying the trimmed sheets, you'll want to make sure they align properly with the other sheets that are already applied to the wall.  The adhesive dries slowly, so if need be, you may adjust the tiles while they're already on the wall to ensure that everything lines up correctly.



The most difficult part, honestly, is installing the tile on awkward areas behind stoves, sinks, and refrigerators.  It helps if you're working in a two-person team: One person trims and hands the second person the tile; meanwhile, the second person applies adhesive and presses the tile in place.

Don't I look glamorous?

Almost done!  The actual installation of our tile backsplash took us between 2 or 3 hours.  


Even though the installation isn't completed at this point, it is truly remarkable how much a great tile backsplash can spruce up your kitchen!






Grout may be applied 4-6 hours after the tile has been installed.  This will allow for the adhesive to dry.  We bought two buckets' worth of pre-mixed grout in a sandy beige color.  We also purchased several different sized rubber floats from Lowe's, and recommend that you do the same.  These floats will help push the grout between the cracks of the tile and ensure uniform coverage. Be sure to have a lot of trashbags on hand, too.  This part's messy.


The most important thing to remember is to work in small sections.  Grout dries a lot quicker than you think, and it forms a thick crust against your tile.  You don't want it to dry too much, or else it'll be really difficult to scrub off.



As you work, use a damp sponge to wipe away any excess grout.  Wipe down the cleaned surfaces again and again.  Each time you do this, you will buff the tile and make it shine.


Last and final step!  Approximately 1-2 weeks after you install the tile and apply the grout, you should finish the backsplash using a grout sealer.  This stuff is pretty toxic, so be sure to use gloves and ventilate the kitchen, as necessary.  The sealer will protect your tile and grout from food stains and will also make everything waterproof.


Ready for the reveal?  Here's our new tile backsplash!





We chose the small square tiles originally so that we wouldn't have to trim the edges too much.  It saved us a lot of time that way. 



I love how the slate and glass combination really brings out the red of our refinished kitchen cabinets and the silver of my spray painted outlet covers.  This was a perfect fit for our kitchen.


I just wish that I would've been brave enough to do this sooner!  Couldn't be any happier with the results.  


Do you remember what our kitchen looked like when we first moved in?


Here it is today!  Our completely DIY kitchen finally feels complete.  All it needs now is crown molding.


Hope you like it as much as we do!

You may find me linking up at these fantastic parties:

Monday: Boogieboard CottageC-R-A-F-TCraft-O-ManiacDIY Home Sweet Home,  Get Outta My Head PleaseThe Girl CreativeMad in CraftsMaking the World CuterOur Delightful HomePolish the StarsSerendipity and SpiceSew Can DoSkip to My LouThrifty Decor ChickToo Much Time on My HandsTuesday: A Bowl Full of LemonsCherished BlissCoastal CharmConfessions of a Stay at Home MommyFunky Polka Dot Giraffe,  I Gotta Try ThatI'm Topsy TurvyJillify ItThe Kurtz CornerMommy By Day Crafter by NightNap Time CreationsNatural NestersNot Just a HousewifeSugar Bee Crafts,  Sweet Little GalsTales of a Trophy WifeTip JunkieToday's Creative BlogWednesday: Adorned from Above, Free Pretty Things for YouGinger Snap CraftsHome Happy HomeIt's Just Called SpicyJAQS StudioLet Birds FlyThe NY Melrose FamilyRae Gun RamblingsThe Sasse LifeSew Much AdoSew WoodsySomeday CraftsSouthern LovelyThursday: A Creative PrincessA Glimpse InsideCrafty, Scrappy, HappyHouse of HepworthsJust Winging ItMade in a DayThe Shabby Creek CottageSomewhat SimpleThrifty DecoratingYesterday on TuesdayFriday: 2805The Answer is ChocolateBacon Time with the Hungry HypoCreation CornerFingerprints on the FridgeThe Grant LifeHappy-Go-LuckyJust Us FourMom 4 RealMy Simple Home LifeNot So Functional HousewifeNot Your Ordinary RecipesOne Artsy MamaPerfectly ImperfectThe Rooster and the HenSimply DesigningTatertots and JelloWhipperberryYoung and CraftySaturday: Be Different... Act NormalCandace CreationsFunky Junk InteriorsIt's OverflowingIt's So Very CheriNutmeg PlaceSunday: The Crafty CowgirlEmbellishing Life with Homemade GoodnessFlamingo ToesG*RatedNifty Thrifty Things

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