Pallet Flag and Labor Day

This weekend is the Labor Day weekend holiday. I can’t believe it’s September. Where does the time go? The older I get, the faster time flies.

What does Labor Day mean to you? Here is what Wikipedia says about Labor Day…Labor Day is a United States federal holiday observed on the first Monday in September, that celebrates the economic and social contributions of workers. It was first nationally recognized in 1894 to placate unionists following the Pullman Strike. With the decline in union membership, the holiday is generally viewed as a time for barbeques and the end of summer vacations.
I still think of Labor Day as a patriotic holiday. Growing up we always did the barbeque thing, but as an adult, not so much. We usually just work on projects or hang with the dogs. I like to take time to think about those that serve(d) our great country, like my brother who served in Vietnam and my sister, who was in the first class of women recruits in the Marine Corp in 1969. They, and so many more, are responsible for keeping Old Glory flying high.
I keep my Red/White/Blue decorations up from Memorial Day through Labor Day. I love decorating my tables and I’m just starting to collect red, white & blue decorations. I don’t have much yet, but I’m working on it. I had planned on doing this pallet flag for Memorial Day and then July 4th. Well, life got busy and even though I had the pallets, I just couldn’t find the time to work on it. So last weekend I finally got it done. It took about an hour to cut and assemble the 13 pallet boards. Jeez, why did it take me so long?
pallet, flag
I love this thing. I have a picture behind it that is way too small for the space. I’ve always wanted something on this fireplace that took up all or almost all the space available. I can’t afford art that big, so I had to make it myself! This was actually a pretty simple project. I had to rip the pallet boards on the table saw. My least favorite tool, the table saw. Mr. DIY helped rip the boards down. Obviously, I don’t have pictures of the ripping of the boards since we were both using the saw. The dimension of the flag is 52 x 35. It’s big. Once we got the 13 boards cut, I attached three boards on the back and screwed them down to every board. That’s a lot of screws. I used my cool new(birthday present) tool, the Worx SD Semi Automatic Driver.
Worx SD Semi Automatic Driver
Check it out online, it has some cool features, like the hole starter drill bit. It’s a fun little tool, plus it’s orange…nuf said!

The wood had this awesome silver patina. see?
I didn’t want to sand it all off. I lightly sanded some of the rough stuff off and all the dirt, but kept most of the patina.
pallet, sanding, dalmatian
This is my helper, Boone. You can read about him here.

I used regular craft paint, but watered it down a lot. I wanted to be able to see the grain and knots under the paint.
pallet, craft paint
The American flag has 13 stripes, representing the original 13 colonies. The top stripe is red and the bottom stripe is red alternating with white. So I figured out where my field of blue would go and started painting with the red.

pallet, craft paint
Then white.
pallet, craft paint
Ready for the blue
pallet, craft paint
pallet, craft paint
Now it was time for the stars. I wasn’t sure how I was going to do them, maybe make my own template. Then, while walking around Hobby Lobby, I found a stencil. It worked great. Now, this was the trickiest part. Seriously? When I looked at my flag, I thought there was a row of stars for every stripe. Turns out, not no much. The rows of stars overlap a little making 9 rows of stars. Try #1 epic fail. Try #2 also an epic fail. After sanding and repainting the blue two times, third time was the charm. Are they perfect? No they aren’t, but that’s ok. I still love it.
pallet, craft paint, stencil
So here it is, in all it’s Old Glory.

pallet, craft paint

I used my sander after I finished painting to rough it up a little around the edges. I actually plan on doing a few more things to it, but maybe that will be a post for next Memorial Day! So, that’s it for the pallet flag project. I hope you like it.

I’m going to add a few pics of my tables ,since this will all come down shortly, and a little project I did using cork. Let me know what you think.

kitchen table, red, white, blue
This is my kitchen table,which I re-did way before I had a blog. The centerpiece is three different cake plates or candy dishes that I got at Hobby Lobby after July 4th. On sale, very cheap!!! The place mats are from Kmart. The plates are paper. Yep! You heard me right, Paper. I couldn’t find any dishes, so I just used paper plates. Shhhhh, listen, there is a collective gasp happening in blog land right now!
dining room table, patriotic theme
This is my dining room table. I used the same place mats from Kmart. I filled the big glass bowl with stars that were originally all strung together. I cut them off the string and put them in the bowl. This time I put the paper plates on top of my square stoneware plates. I used my silver napkin rings and a blue bandanna for napkins. I couldn’t find any napkins that I liked, and I think these work perfectly. See the stars under the bowl? That’s part of the cork project I did. I couldn’t find a table runner (sensing a theme here?). I made a template from Word and cut out my cork.
cork, stars
Once I got them all cut out, I painted each star differently.
cork, craft paint, painters tape
cork, craft paint
cork, craft paint, diy stencil
cork, craft paint
cork, craft paint
cork, craft paint
cork, craft paint, bandanna, patriotic place mat
cork, patriotic theme table, craft paint
So that’s basically it. I think I will do a project for next year, where I mount those stars in a board. It’ll be a perfect project for the router I have on my Christmas wish list!! I’m sorry for the picture heavy post. I’ll be working on Halloween soon. This is my favorite holiday and orange is my favorite color, so I’ll be posting pics of some projects I did before I had my blog. One in particular is my favorite. Can’t wait to show you. I’ve also got a cool new project coming up that I hinted about here. Looking forward to getting that done and posted.
So, until next time…

Disclaimer: I was not compensated in any way by Worx, Frog Tape, Blue Painter’s Tape,  the makers of cork or Dalmatian lovers around the world, I just love them all!

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Quick weekend – Leash hanger project

We have a new addition to our family. Meet Boone.
Dalmatian puppy














He’s 12 weeks old. Is he not the cutest thing ever? We’ve had him two weeks and I’m in love with him already. He joins Dozer, his reluctant older brother.













I’ve had a hook in my laundry room for the leash and harness for my dog Dozer. When Boone came I knew I was going to have to come up with something new. I have a bunch of pallet wood in my garage from all the construction going on in my neighborhood. (Hello, do not leave pallets unattended on my street!) I picked up some awesome hooks from Hobby Lobby and went about making a new place to store leashes and harnesses. Like I said, this was a quick weekend project, so it’s not a tutorial. It’s just something I threw together. My laundry room is a sea blue green color. When we first painted this room, I loved the paint color when it was in the can, not so much once it was on the walls. I’ve grown used to it by now and I’ve put up a beautiful glass backsplash that has all the colors in the room in it. So that was the inspiration for the color for my leash holder.
Laundry Room

I used some craft paint added some white, added some floetrol and painted the board. It was still TOO bright. I hated it. So I took some white craft paint and added water and just kinda white washed it with a rag until I liked it. I sanded a little, just to give it character. I finally got to use the freezer paper transfer method that is all over blog land. I had wanted to use it on my Country Door Knockoff sign, but just couldn’t make it work, so I thought I’d give it a try here. I wasn’t 100% successful and I did go over the letters with a sharpie, but I really like how it turned out.  See that little white hook on my ironing board?  That’s what I was using for Dozer’s leash before.

I printed out the font in reverse and used a spoon to burnish the names onto the board. I found the dog in my word clipart and did it the same way. It was still kinda light, so I went over everything with a sharpie. I still plan on sanding it a little and using a dark wax on it. At the time, I didn’t have the wax. So, that’s my quick little weekend project. Add some sawtooth picture hangers and you are good to go.

Thanks for stopping by. Until next time…

Liz Marie Blog
Chic on a Shoestring Decorating

504 Main



Before & After – Old School Mailbox into Scrapbook Paper Tower

I finally finished it!  I know I’ve teased you a couple of times.  First time here and second time here.  I am so excited to show you how this turned out.  Most of you know I love going to our local Habitat ReStore.  It’s usually an every Saturday morning trip.  There have probably only been one or two times I haven’t found something I wanted.  Lucky for my bank account, not so lucky for me.  When I saw this really long kinda ugly mailbox that was probably mounted on a wall in a school or in an office, I wasn’t sure if I liked it at first.

Mailbox edit
See what I mean? Kinda ugly. But, the price was great and I loved the little tarnished brass label holders.
tarnished brass label holder
So, now the wheels were turning. One didn’t have any of the brass tags so I knew I didn’t want that one. Once I measured the size of the boxes, I knew what I would turn it into. On the truck it went. Now came the fun part. Turning it into something.
Habitat ReStore Scrapbook paper tower
Habitat ReStore Scrapbook Paper Tower
Here they are side by side.  I had to modify the bottom shelf on the left side tower to match the one on the right.  I knew I wanted to add a base molding and I would need something to nail into, so one of the boards we cut off, was put back on using the Kreg Jig.  Nice and sturdy.  See that piece of molding the brass tags are attached to?  It was a funky shaped piece of molding.  I knew the cabinets would never go together with that there, so we had to run the saw down it to take that off.  This did some damage that I had to repair later in the process.   Next step was kind of tedious, but necessary.

Habitat ReStore Mailbox Brass Tag Removal
This didn’t take that long…no really.   Ok it did, and it was like 100 in the garage. These little beauties came back to haunt me later on in the project. You’ll see… So, now it was time to put them together. I used the same principal as when you screw kitchen cabinets together. Pre-drill and screw. With the damage that was done cutting that funny piece of molding off, I had to use wood filler to fill in the crack. No pic on that. Sorry.
Screw cabinets together
Once I got them screwed together and the space between them filled in with wood filler, I did a light sanding. I couldn’t get a sander in the actual paper slots, so I used some liquid sandpaper. This was not fun. At all. Next step was to prime and paint.
This is what I used to prime. I did the tops of all the boxes and then flipped it over and did the bottoms. I wish I had covered it a little more with primer before I started painting. I used the same Behr Popped Corn paint that I used on my craft room cabinets. Painting was not a fun project. I usually enjoy painting. I tried a roller, long handled brush and finally a flat painting pad on the inside of the mail slots. I got more paint on my hands I think, than on the paper tower. Jeez. What a pain. But it was really starting to take shape. I knew I wanted to use bead board, like I did on the craft room cabinets. I love bead board. I put on a piece of pretty trim molding on the front edge to butt the bead board up to. Kinda hard to see in this picture, but you’ll see when it’s finished.
trim molding
See that side? That’s why I needed the bead board. I wanted to put a base molding around the bottom to make it look more like a piece of furniture. We were having trouble evening up the bottom to make it sit level. I was afraid that if we kept cutting we would end up ruining the entire thing. So I used a board off an old pallet, extended it over the edge to create a new bottom. Worked like a charm.
pallet base board
I put felt pads on the bottom to protect the bamboo floors. I love how this turned out.
Here you can see the base, bead board and the trim molding. It’s really starting to look like something. I’m getting excited.
Next step, crown molding. Oh boy. Crown molding can bring down the best diy’ers. I’m definitely not doing a tutorial on crown molding, but I don’t understand why the lumber mills don’t make it easier for the consumer. It all starts with the spring angle, I don’t know why they don’t put that right on the crown. Anyway, I have an awesome little tool called the Cut-N-Crown. It has saved my life many times. We met the designer/founder of this awesome product at our local home show. I will never do crown without this product. Ever. Here’s how that turned out.
almost done
I am so loving this piece. Painted it all up nice.  Now it was time to move it in and start finishing it up. Remember those tarnished brass tags? Oh yeah. Now I had to put them back on.
tarnished Brass tags
They have the TINIEST nails ever! I had to use my needle nose pliers to hold the nail. I ran a level across both boxes drew a line, held up the tag and marked the holes. Using the pliers I used a nail to start a hole.
Tarnished Brass Name Tag
I did this 32 times, X 4 screws each = 128 teeny, tiny nails. I did the lower half sitting on the floor. I didn’t think I would ever get back up. I thought I was paralyzed. What was I thinking? Note to self, next time, put this up on saw horses and work standing up. Phew, I’m getting old. Anyway, here it is, in all it’s glory.
Habitat ReStore before and after
Love, Love, Love.
Habitat ReStore Paper Tower finished
I’ll use this for more than just paper. I can put scrapbook embellishments or my Cricut vinyl, things like that.
Here’s the before and after.
Habitat ReStore paper tower before and after
Well, there ya have it. I hope you love it as much as I do. This is my favorite project so far. Leave me a comment, let me know what you think. Until next time.


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