Ms Fix-It

by DaniGirl on January 15, 2007 · 17 comments

in It IS all about me

I went on a home-improvement tear this weekend.

First, I decided our kitchen chairs were long overdue to be reupholstered. I’ve never actually reupholstered furniture before, but that didn’t stop me.

I got some fabric at Bouclair. I remembered to choose a fabric without a complicated pattern (too hard to centre) but with a nice, thick weave that won’t easily pull or fray. In the end, this navy denim was on sale and I got more than enough for the whole project for $13.

I also picked up one of those fancy front-end staple guns at Home Depot. It was much easier to use than the rusty clunker we inherited from god-knows-where.

In one of my home improvement books, I found basic instructions for reupholstering a dining room chair. I had a little bit of trouble making neat corners, but the denim was fairly forgiving and in the end it was close enough.

I’m happy with the finished project.

It only took me about an hour and a half to do all four chairs, and the navy is nice in my yellow-and-white-with-blue-accents kitchen.

After that, I decided I needed to fix Simon’s dresser. I bought it second-hand at a garage sale long before I was even pregnant, in anticipation of the need for a kid’s dresser some day. Tristan used it when he was a baby, and Simon inherited it when he was born.

Its shallow drawers are perfect for small baby clothes, but over the years, the sides have bowed out just enough that the drawers in the middle were falling off the runners. Every time you pull open a drawer, it slips off the runner and tips into the drawer under it. Rather than buy a new dresser, I’ve been puzzling idly for months on a way to increase the width of the runners by half a centimeter or so, so we could get another couple of years out of it. (As if six years out of a $25 dresser isn’t enough!)

I went to Home Depot, and they recommended a little strip of wood that is ordinarily used in laying hardwood floors, called a ‘slip tongue’ (snicker). It fit perfectly! I tried two different iterations, one to thicken the drawer runner and one to make a wider shelf to sit on the runner. To my great surprise, they both worked. A little bit of glue, a couple of C-clamps, and we’re good to go.

I also bought two under-bed storage boxes from Ikea, and put up some metal bars over the boys’ work table, so they can display their artwork on a rotating basis with magnets instead of masking tape.

What, you might be wondering, was the inspiration for this flurry of activity? Remember how inspired I was feeling by that single lost pound last week? Yah. I found it again. All that hard work last week, and I’m back up a pound. Gah. So if I can’t get my weight under control, I’m damn well going to wrest the rest of my life from the chaos.

I even bought a plant. Poor thing doesn’t stand a chance.


{ 16 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Miche January 15, 2007 at 1:27 pm

Wow, Dani! What’s your hourly rate?
You did beautiful work, I’m in awe!

2 Sue January 15, 2007 at 1:31 pm

Great fix-up work!!

3 nancy January 15, 2007 at 2:51 pm

Very inspiring!!! Where do you get the time and energy?? Great jobs!!!

4 Suzanne January 15, 2007 at 5:15 pm

Wow! I am so impressed.

5 twinmomplusone January 15, 2007 at 7:21 pm

watch out! Dani is on a mission!
well done šŸ™‚

6 Birdie January 15, 2007 at 8:08 pm

Lovely work – the navy favors your decor. I have a chest of drawers I’m itching to sand and stain, but it’s a whopping 9 degrees F here this afternoon and I don’t have the stomach to brave the cold. It will have to wait for Spring.

7 Birdie January 15, 2007 at 8:08 pm

Lovely work – the navy favors your decor. I have a chest of drawers I’m itching to sand and stain, but it’s a whopping 9 degrees F here this afternoon and I don’t have the stomach to brave the cold. It will have to wait for Spring.

8 Valerie January 15, 2007 at 9:03 pm

Didn’t you say you were a klutz with tools? Nicely done, Dani. The chairs look great. Good idea about the metal bars for the boys – may I ask where you got those?

9 Valerie January 15, 2007 at 9:03 pm

Didn’t you say you were a klutz with tools? Nicely done, Dani. The chairs look great. Good idea about the metal bars for the boys – may I ask where you got those?

10 Fryman January 16, 2007 at 12:40 am

I can confirm a couple of things from the post & comments –
1. Dani has many incredible skills and traits, and in the over 25 years I have known her, I had never considered home repair to be one of them.
3. Navy favors any decor that involves small children & food.
2. The plant does not stand a chance
Way to go D!

11 Fryman January 16, 2007 at 12:40 am

I can confirm a couple of things from the post & comments –
1. Dani has many incredible skills and traits, and in the over 25 years I have known her, I had never considered home repair to be one of them.
3. Navy favors any decor that involves small children & food.
2. The plant does not stand a chance
Way to go D!

12 Amy S. January 16, 2007 at 1:06 am

Wow! Great job – those chairs look amazing! Look out Martha!

13 Kim January 16, 2007 at 1:16 am

You go girl!

14 Marla January 16, 2007 at 4:08 pm

Wow – no mention of being “helped”. Were you able to accomplish so much because you didn’t have “helpers”? Because, I could be so much more handy without my “helper”.
And, if you want to come for a visit, you could help me get rid of the leopard print fun fur on my dining room chairs. It’s from Steve’s bachelor days. Steve’s bachelor days ended eleven years ago. (Join me in a collective eeeeeuw!)

15 Jen January 17, 2007 at 1:55 am

Wow! Between the “other” blog and the ability to do Martha-esque projects, I think you are setting yourself up nicely to pitch The Dani Show to Alliance!

16 yvonne January 17, 2007 at 2:45 pm

Poor plant. I can hear him screaming to my dying plants even as I write.

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