I built this floating bench and it was super easy and you should build one too.

Old houses were built for people without hoarding tendencies, I have inferred.

I have hoarding tendencies, and have material goods all over the place, which invariably turns into a pile. For me to climb upon and slumber like a dragon on her riches and spoils.

And apparently, it’s genetic, because my dragon child insists on leaving her pile right at the front door, as soon as she walks in the house.

The room doesn’t have a closet, or a place to make a closet/closed storage. So, I hung up some hooks, and that was a start. Then, things kind of turned into a clusterfuck of shoes, coats, backpacks under the hooks?

The logistics baffled me though. There is a bump out for the vestibule and a radiator, too. But a replacement radiator, that wasn’t as big as the original one, so there is a pipe along the floor.

One day, I was staring at the whole area with contempt, as I’m wont to do, and then it occurred to me that I could use the same method for floating shelves to BUILD A BENCH. WITH ROOM FOR BASKETS UNDERNEATH. THAT WOULD FIT THE GAP BETWEEN THE WALL AND THE RADIATOR.

And the heavens opened and I went out to get 3 2x4s and some plywood.

First: Locate the studs in the 3 walls and mark them. Bonus tip: don’t have plaster walls. It’s so frustrating to find the studs. The most accurate tool that I have is one of those cheapy magnet tools, but it’s a slow process.

I knew that I wanted my bench frame to be 16″ deep and span the whole length of the wall.

The 2×4’s actual dimension is 1 1/2″, so 16″ – 3″ (front/back frames) left me with 13″ long middle pieces. I cut 6 of them, because, idk that’s what happened. The front and the back ended up being 74″ – give or take some for out of plumb walls.

I marked off the stud location on the back 2×4, so I didn’t inadvertently put a middle piece there. Then I attached the middle pieces with some 3″ long deck screws. Except the one on the radiator wall (I wouldn’t be able to screw the front piece to it) and the side piece (couldn’t find a stud and had to use a toggle), if you don’t have this issue. Then ignore that and do all the middle pieces.

I read on the internets to have the bench height, including the cushion, be 18″ off the ground. I made mine slightly higher than that, to accommodate 11″ baskets underneath. I’m wild like that.

Once you have your total height decided, minus the thickness of the cushion and 3/4″ for the plywood, mark a level line on the wall. Take the back piece with the attached middle pieces, line it up level, and use those same 3″ deck screws to screw it into the studs. Side pieces, too.

Hold up the long front piece and then screw that into the middle pieces, et voila. Super sturdy. I was a little skeptical, but I stood on the frame and that shit isn’t going anywhere.

I cut a piece of sanded plywood 16″x74″ and put that on top. I used some small cabinet screws to attach it to the 2×4 frame.

Since the side of the 2×4 is ugly, I used a piece of 1×6 poplar and my nail gun. I created a 1″ lip above, to keep the cushion from sliding off.

It got primed and painted the same color as the trim, to really add to the whole floating thing.

For the cushion, I chose the Augusta fabric from Tonic Living. It has this beautiful cream and gold marbling thing going on.

I don’t sew, but I found someone on etsy who does. Jessiya on etsy did a great job, it is flawless.

Baskets! For shoes! That will most likely sit half empty, with small shoes kicked off and left in front of! They have good intentions, though.

Let us bask in this, it will never be this clean and organized again.

 

 

Updates on the front room 1/20/2018 and some feelings

Heyyyyy.

I’m posting again! HI TO ANYONE THAT CARES!

I’ve been pretty active on Instagram, for me, and I might be bordering (or fully surpassed, idk) on annoying with my insta stories. They don’t really have anything to do with DIY or projects and are more about me/life.

But, I don’t have a different Instagram for that? And my momma told me that it’s ok for me to be more of a person on it. She doesn’t have Instagram, but I would totally follow her if she did.

If you’re not following, and annoying stories about my cat interest you, you can follow me. Tempting, I know. I really enjoy the messages and conversations from them!

Speaking of Instagram, I had to unfollow a lot of well-known DIY home bloggers.

Most real people cannot keep up with the pace they set for DIY projects and large home renovations. Then they write a post with a budget breakdown and what? They didn’t actually have to pay that?

No one is going to give me $15,000 worth of appliances or materials or come do the work for free. It feels unrelatable.

And I’m not saying that I DO want any of that. But, it gives an unrealistic expectation of what my house should look like 5 months after moving in.

Then I get frustrated that I’ve been in my house for 5 years and I only see the things that I haven’t finished.

Thennnnnn I pull up ‘before’ pictures and realize that I have made a ton of progress. And I remember that it’s for the best for this process to be slow, thought out and organic. Otherwise, I end up making a lot of decisions that I regret and will change.

And I’m like: lmaoooooooooooooo remember how in the front room, the previous owners had blown insulation put in with big holes/wooden plugs AND THEN LITERALLY PUT SQUARES OF WALLPAPER OVER THE HOLES WITH GLUE!? OMG FUN TIMES.

I removed the drywall, skim coated the walls, and painted the trim white.

HUGE DIFFERENCE.

And moved the original wood door, to replace the horrible steel exterior door.

I forgot my point of this post? omg do I ever shut up?

Right. AFTER TWO YEARS ON MY PORCH – WE HAD THE DOOR HUNG.

Quick snap before it was installed

Last time I hung (hanged? English language, you so crazy) a door with my husband, it turned into an explosive fight and I vowed never to experience that again. It would likely end up in a homicide/suicide situation. Best to avoid that and hire it out.

It was surprisingly difficult to find a professional who knew how to simply mortise the new door for hinges and install it in the existing door jamb? When I would call for an estimate, they usually told me that they only installed pre-hung doors. So I gave up for a few years.

ANYWAYS.

I called a handyman service and explained to the nice lady what I needed and she told me that would be fine and she would schedule their carpenter.

AND THEN I WAS LIKE THIS IS TOO EASY.

So I repeated the situation about 7 times to make sure I was clear, and she clearly thought I was unwell mentally.

He did a great job and it cost $165.

I opted to install the door hardware myself to save money.

He really, really, did not want to let me. He kept asking me if I was sure that I wanted to do it. It wasn’t mean but also fuck off because I said that I did already like 45432124 times and I know that I am a woman but I am still capable of using my hands?

I hadn’t ever mortised a door before, so cue the stress sweating, but it went pretty well and it only cost me $5 for the drill bit.

I am not saying that I am a door knob, but if I were, I would be this door knob and thumb turn combo.

I still haven’t finished scraping off the paint from the glass. I’ll probably do an update post on that in about 2 years. THE ANTICIPATION MUST BE KILLING YOU.

The color is from Ace, OPI ‘Care to danse?’ in exterior satin.

Still a stupid name and I hate asking for it. I quite literally cringe.

That fucking wallpaper. I still love it so, so, so much.

A few months ago, I built this floating bench for this odd little nook.

Andddddddd I bought this mirror from Anthro last year (20% off sale for the win!) to go above my campaign dresser. It doesn’t seem to be available anymore. 

I really struggled with lamps? The scale baffled me. That was until I saw these ones from CB2 and I was like YASSSSSSSSSSSS GIMME.

Ignore that bright orange extension cord ok? I almost  moved it and retook pictures and then I was like nah. We are bright orange extension cord people in this household. And lazy.

These guys are always lurking. 

Seriously, how do I use so many words for nothing?

SO, the point. Yeah, it’s taken me 5 years to get this room here. BUT I AM COOL WITH IT. YOU BE COOL WITH YOUR PROGRESS, TOO.

Also, as always, I appreciate all of you wonderful people for your support, comments and inspiration.

What I’m on: January 2018

Look at me kind of sometimes blogging! I haven’t done this kind of post in a long time and I thought it would be nice to start up again.

Making: Nothing at the moment! I am drafting plans up in my brain to remove the drawers in my hallway and create a more efficient linen closet.

Cooking: Vegan meats. I haven’t eaten meat since November and I need to figure out an alternative. I found a vegan meat shop called The Herbivorous butcher and have been experimenting. Their Italian sausage is delish in spaghetti sauce with mushrooms, bell peppers and shallots.

Drinking: Vodka Soda. I’ve been trying to drink less wine/sugar? idk. It’s watered down vodka, lets not make it more than it is, not bad though!

Reading: Behind her eyes – YA’LL THE ENDING WILL HAVE YOU FUCKED UP.

Wanting: This or this mirror for my living room? My husband is straight up appalled that I want a mirror in every room. WHO IS HE, MEDUSA!?

Enjoying: Sleep overs with my daughter in our finished guest room! It’s so dark and cozy. I haven’t co-slept with her since she was 4 months old (she’s 7 now), but, we have been enjoying piling all our pillows and blankets in there and sleeping in late when my husband is working overnights.

Listening: Oh wonder – so chill.

Needing: At least a 20% coupon for CB2 for those potential mirrors.

Smelling: The last bit of pine smell from the Christmas tree, which finally got tossed out.

Wearing: Nothing but sweats. It’s been in the negative temps for several weeks now, and through a combination of vacation and working from home, I have hardly left the house.

Watching: Planet Earth II – I love this show. So beautiful and it puts so much in perspective for me.

Feeling: Contemplative. This past year was really difficult for me with some deep emotional avoidance and depression. I have been trying to do some reflection on changes that I can make. Expanded post drafted, it’s hard to write it all out and put it on the internet. I feel it’s important though. Mental health is so taboo and way underrepresented, especially in this age of perfect Instagram and blog lives. I’m not perfect, and I know that I’m not alone in that (no offense).