Monday, June 24, 2013

Finishing touches

Installing the door and drawer front completes my daughter Sophie's bedroom built-ins. 

 I have also finished up on my other daughter Mason's bathroom where I added a frame with storage to the vanity mirror and drawers and foot detail to her vanity.

 before brown, no drawers or foot detail
 after three drawers and simple foot detail , adding those drawers has made a huge difference in the clutter on the counter...
Going to call these projects completed...

Saturday, June 15, 2013

The evolution of a built in , day 7

I am so happy with how the built-ins turned out especially after toying with how to set this built-in up for a long time. The reason I couldn't do a second tower to make it symmetrical is because to the right there is the door to the bathroom and a second tower would block access to that door. 

 Here is the little sketch of the built-in plan, things change during the building process as per usual when it come to me.
 I ordered a door for the bottom of the tower and a drawer front for the drawer, they will be inset doors. I went with a simple paint grade with an ogee and a straight edge. I considered a bead board inset door but it was more than twice the cost and it wasn't worth it for me, both doors cost $70 which I thought was very reasonable. Trying to find door to fit and in the size I needed would have been impossible. I want a professional seamless end result. It took 3 coats of paint just FYI.
Here is how things began , plain roman shades and a nice but not properly sized dresser for this room. 
 And here is a reminder of how it looked last Saturday , I know it is hard to believe it is the same stuff, the bones aren't cute but they don't need to be.

So there you have it a week from rough to lovely.

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Can we talk??? why are people surprised when they find out I am a woman and that I do carpentry isn't it 2013

Now I know that the fact that I do carpentry and that only because I am a girl makes that unusual....I am not sure how I feel about that at all.

I know the reason I started doing any carpentry isn't unusual. I too used to ask or expect my husband to do certain things because I had never used a power tool (about 12 years ago). I know that when we married the only project I had ever really done was painting. I knew I wanted things done around the house, I wanted things the way we liked and we liked how we saw rooms in magazines with lots amazing trim and with built ins and character, we wanted our home to have that too.

So there were two ways to get that done, well we could have my very capable husband do projects in the spare time that did not exist of we could hire someone. But it turns out carpentry work is very very pricey, and rightly so because there is so much work involved and know how of course.
Well things got really busy for my husband working after hours and often on weekends and we definitely didn't have thousands to spend just wainscoting so it didn't get done...or not until I decided I could do it myself.

Fast forward many years later and now I can do so much more , bookcases , built ins, furniture all kinds of trim, I thoroughly enjoy carpentry. I know I am not alone as a girl handy person but when I come across people they remind me how unusual this actually is still...

For instance just today , I went to pick up some custom drawers fronts I had made at a local door shop and when I went in to pick them up I get a strange look to start....and since my name is Chris a lot of people think I am a guy...common mistake I suppose, but then I get the question "is your husband Chris , I was gonna ask if he ever has done this before?" no I am Chris and I do carpentry..."Oh really??? " he says , interesting. I guess they don't see many women besides the ones in the front office.

He goes on to tell me how they (tv producers I suppose) are actively looking for a television host to do a show about carpentry geared toward WOMEN , now I am camera shy to say the least and I go to say how I would do it but I am camera shy, when he tells me they are looking for a MAN.....
why would they look for a man to host a carpentry show geared towards women,
is it just me of is that strange?

Hey I am all for empowering more women to use power tools and I admire the few I know personally that I have inspired to become amazingly creative in the field of carpentry but the fact that they aren't looking for a person to host said show kinda irks me.

I know there are many great blogging female carpenters out here , can you please share with me the ones you admire and know of , I'm sure there are ones I don't know about...but that I would like to know about.

I just really hope we have come far enough to not still think of power tools and carpentry as man work just like we don't think of house work and child care as women work, lets evolve people...I just hate getting a second look or being looked at like I'm lost in the lumber section, tired of it.

Oh and not all husbands want tools for Father's day , we are not all the same. Thanks for letting me vent.

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Day 4 progress on the built ins

Well this is where I am today on the built ins, everything is in place now, I just need to price out one door and one drawer front. Depending on the cost of having them made I may decide to make my own, we'll see. 

I made a shallow drawer for this middle section.
 Here I am taking a little breather and enjoying the new view. I have been having Sophie make the decisions on the built in with me, since she will be the one using it. This built in needs to fit her needs. The section on the far left was going to have drawers but since the cabinet is only 12" deep plus trim it leaves only very shallow drawers so we went with more shelves and a door.
 Crown moulding really makes all the difference here, I am so glad I got over my fear and tackled learning this tricky manoeuvre, it was so exciting to see the corner come together perfectly.

Today I will sand , fill holes , caulk and paint. Oh wait the sun is actually shining today so maybe I will have to take a breather and enjoy the weather and get the lawn care done. Gotta be flexible right!

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Day three of built-ins

 Things are moving along quite well with the built-ins in my daughters room.
Moving onto day 4 of probably 10 days since there are drawers and lots of painting to I will finish the trimming and crown moulding, then adding the supports for drawer slides , building drawers installing drawers and making or ordering drawer fronts....this will be keeping me busy for some time.

Sunday, June 9, 2013

working on the home front

 I have finally started working on some more projects at home including a big run of built ins for Sophie's room. It was always the plan to do this in here room so I listed her white dresser on Kijiji an used the funds from the sale to fund this project.
I know it looks rough here but this is just the start, I was just dry fitting the boxes. There is a lot of work still to be done. I am going to make nice thick wood tops for everything with a routered edge. There will be drawers and a tall tower of shelves to the left side. I am pretty excited for the end result.

*Edited to add some progress photos . Today I installed the cabinets and topped them with wood which will get another edge piece to make it look like a 2" tops with a square edge. I was going to use thicker stock but they didn't have the length I needed so I adapted. The lower portion bench is almost 9' so I used thinner 10' pine boards. It will all be painted as per Sophie's wishes. 
Next steps are adding more shelves, face framing and trimming out the ends with a nice detail, then moving on to baseboard trim and adding a vent grill and a nice crown moulding and then a whole lot of painting...

Just to show you how far simple boxes can come these built ins I did last year also looked like the boxes in the photo above so there is hope.
Here is a little inspiration photo of where I am going 

 I have also been working away on my other daughter Mason's bathroom. I framed out the shelves around here mirror with a very thin pieces of poplar as I didn't want to add too much weight to the frame.
 Lots more storage to keep things organized and at hand.
 My next challenge was to help clear the counter and to add some appeal to the big base cabinet. I will be painting the doors for sure then I thought it was best to add drawers to one of the cabinets.
I can probably do that , right?

 So I learned how to make drawers , finally. And it was easy. This will really help get this bathroom in shape.
I just need to add the drawer fronts and hardware and a nice foot detail and paint it all.... it's gonna take me a couple of weeks I'm sure. I went to a local cabinet door maker and they will have the drawer fronts made to match the other doors for under $75.00 which is amazing. No one will ever know that the drawers were an after thought.

I am now going to incorporate drawers a lot more often.

So that is what I have been up to, oh and working on getting our backyard project under way. Looks like our custom hot tub project will be starting in August, that's exciting.

I hope you are enjoying some lovely summer weather where you are, looks like this Sunday is going to be beautiful I am am going to definitely enjoy it, I hope you will too.

Friday, June 7, 2013

big news

 Today we are celebrating 16 years of marriage, I am very lucky to have a great husband who is always there for me and ever the supportive partner in life. I certainly don't take it for granted that we are still married and going strong. I am very happy to share my life with the man I met on my 19th birthday many years ago.  
Aren't these flowers lovely that he brought me, don't you just love flowers? roses and peonies my fave's.

There is some other big news at our house , my husbands new show GROJBAND is premiering Monday on Cartoon Network in the US , funny we will not be able to view the big event here in Canada but soon enough it will air on Teletoon. We are so proud of my hubby.

you can watch the promo here

It is also available on Amazon and iTunes

Sidekick is also a great success, I get a kick every time I see it on TV, it never gets old.

So there you go , big news I wanted to share, thanks for letting me do so.