Wednesday, September 22, 2010

The shower doors have got to go!

When I purchased my townhouse there were a few decor elements that I wouldn't have necessarily chosen, one of which was glass doors in the bathroom showers.  I'm sure a lot of people love these things, I am not one of them.


Of the past two owners, I don't think anyone wanted to take on the task of removing the shower doors in the bathrooms.  Maybe they thought it was going to be a more intensive task than it was.  All I know is, the doors were absolutely hideous and they had to go!

I did some research online and most posts assured me that the removal shouldn't be too bad or take too long, unless the doors were installed incorrectly.  So, I crossed my fingers and went for it.   I figured that if I ruined the tub, I'd just get a new one since I want to do some additional work to the master bath anyway.

I started the demolition at 10PM one evening; I just couldn't stand the the doors anymore! After finagling with one of the doors, I was able to lift it off of the top rail and remove it completely.  The other door, however, was attached to the bottom rail with two screws.  After fighting them for a little while, I was able to free that door as well. Next, I popped the top rail off (by far the easiest part!) and started to remove the six screws (3 on each) that held the side rails in place.  The side and bottom rails were unfortunately attached to the tub with latex caulking.  After a good bit of slicing with a razor blade and prying with a caulk remover tool, I was able to remove all of the rails.  Unfortunately, they left behind a lot of the caulking, which wasn't the easiest to remove. At first I thought the bottom rail had completely destroyed the tub because of the black patch I found that appeared to get worse as I scrubbed at it.  I did find out by accident that rubbing alcohol breaks the caulk down, so the spot came up with ease, thank goodness! Once the caulking was all cleaned up, I was able to cap off the holes that remained in the tub wall from the screws.  Job mostly done!

Add a shower rod and curtain and presto!
Note: Bathroom makeover still in progess!

 The guest bathroom's shower wasn't used nearly as much as the master one, so it was a lot easier to clean up.  I'm so glad I don't have any icky shower doors that are impossible to fully clean anymore!

Monday, September 13, 2010

A craft command center like no other...

It seems as though I've never had a desk big enough to work on all of the crafts that I seem to get myself into or enough storage space for all of my materials.  So, I started to shop around for a new desk for my craft room, but still couldn't find exactly what I was looking for.  I'm sure you know where this is going... I decided to take of the task of building one myself.  Hey, how else do you get exactly what you need?
There's been a trend lately of cube bookcases; many different brands manufacture them most notably- Closetmaid.  Being that space is a concern (I share my craft room with the "office") I knew from the start that I wanted to use the cube bookcases (I ended up with the 2x3 units- $40 each) to add storage below my desk while serving as a base for the desktop. I love things that serve dual-purposes!

I count myself lucky to live a mere five miles from an Ikea.  Why do I love Ikea?  Well, for someone like me that needs to put my own spin on everything, their cost-effective (a.k.a. cheap) products allow me to push my creative limit without fear of wasting too much money if the end result is not what I was hoping for.

As far as desks, Ikea has started to sell pieces of desks, specifically different size tops and legs, that allow you to customize. I wanted to maximize the available space by creating an L-shape desk. To do so, I attached two different-sized desk tops together, securing with some steel brackets.  I also purchased two sets of 6 inch legs, total expenditure of about $40.  

So, as you see above, I turned the bookcases on their sides and added the 6in legs from Ikea to the top to create some additional storage and to raise the height of the desktop so that I could work from a standing position as well.

Now, of course, I can't stand a plain white desk, so the next step was to customize some doors to add some color. It was important to me to make sure that however I chose to customize the desk it would not be permanent.  I change my mind and my style a lot.  I knew it would be easier to simply peel a temporary cover off of each door rather than to scrape and sand whatever design. 

I ended up using 3M's spray adhesive, which is permanent if you adhere both surfaces immediately, or temporary if you let the sprayed surface dry slightly before affixing it.  Because the doors are around 11 inches tall and wide, I was able to use standard 12x12 scrapbook paper to adorn the doors. I chose to use a different design for each door, but stuck with a teal blue theme for a unified look.  You can see my high-tech spray booth above.

One of the finished doors with the door pull attached.

The process was a bit tedious, as each door needed to be wrapped and the corners glued to ensure a smooth finish.  After about 2 hours I had all 6 doors done and attached to the book cases.  I'm really happy with the final result! The total cost for this custom desk was around $150, so not too bad. 

I've added a few more baskets since this picture was taken to help organize some of my high-demand supplies.  All in all, it's a perfect craft command center for me, now I just need to get to work doing some more crafting!