Tag Archives: paint

Dress(er) for Success

September 24, 2017 by
Photography by Bill Sitzmann

Some might consider it strange to use an antique buffet as a dresser, but this piece of furniture simply suited my needs: space to store all the smaller and delicate items in my bedroom—while also looking exquisite.

I’ve had this piece for a long time. Over the last several years, I felt it didn’t quite fit in any particular room; however, I couldn’t stand giving this gem away. The sad antique buffet migrated around the house before it eventually settled in a corner of a basement storage room.

In my house—if I hold onto a piece long enough—furniture will, sooner or later, take on a new purpose. And that is just what happened.

I have always wanted a dressing table and thought this would be a perfect addition to the yearlong makeover of my dressing room. It has perfect little drawers (originally used for silverware) convenient for makeup and brushes. Pretty baskets of my necessities take the place of fine china.

My dilemma was to conceptualize seating in front of this antique treasure. Where would my legs go? Luckily the two bottom cabinet doors open, so I would just have them open when in use.

As far as the color choice, I contemplated the options for almost a year before finally deciding on a soft gold. Since gold is the accent color of this otherwise white-on-white room, the color combo just screams elegance.

Every room needs that signature piece, and the dressing table is that signature for this room. Below are the items and steps that I used to complete this DIY project.

Items needed

  • 1 classic piece of furniture (or something you would like to breathe new life into)
  • Sandpaper in medium grit
  • 1 sponge roller (this is for the smooth finish)
  • 2-3 hand sponge applicators
  • 1 can of Zinsser Cover Stain Interior Latex Primer (available at Home Depot or Lowe’s)
  • 1 can of Modern Masters Metallic Paint in “pale gold” (purchased in Omaha at The Color Store Inc.)

Instructions

  1. Remove all hardware, including drawers and cabinet doors, from your furniture. Save it if you are using them later.
  2. Either sand until you remove the glossy finish, or you can use a primer/stain-blocker with a bonding agent (depending on the condition your piece is in).
  3. Once you have sanded, or put on several coats of the primer-bonding agent, use your hand sponge applicator to get in the hard-to-access areas and detailed spots. You can then use the foam roller to cover the entire piece. I painted the base of the piece before painting the drawers and doors.
  4. Now you are ready for the top coat. Use the same process as with the primer to coat the entire piece. I discovered it may have been easier to have my primer tinted closer to the gold color, but I did not do this, so I had to paint an extra coat.

Note:  If you are not quite comfortable going by these instructions, search YouTube for wooden furniture painting tutorials.


Sandy’s year long DIY remodeling series began with an introduction to the room in the January/February issue. The first of five projects, a hanging coffee filter lamp, debuted in March/April issue. Rustic wall vases followed in the May/June issue. Vintage classic chairs were in the July/August issue. Stay tuned for the next installment. Visit readonlinenow.com to review back issues.

This article appears in the September/October 2017 edition of Omaha Home.

Cowboy Up!

May 6, 2016 by
Photography by Bill Sitzmann

Normally I like to do something with flowers in this issue, typically my own Mother’s day tradition of potting my flowers. This year I decided to take an old piece of furniture and give it a pop of color for spring.

I tend to shy away from bright colors, but I decided to step out of my comfort zone. Bright colors are popular in spring. I chose a chartreuse paint, which gives punch to any backdrop.

Sandy2

In this case it was a great little old shed that sits on a farm I drive past every day. It also happens to be the same spot where I had my youngest daughter’s senior pictures taken. I loved it then, and love it now.

I found some old cowboy boots in a thrift store, but I never wear them. They do, however, make a great place to plant flowers.

This really just requires a long weekend.

TIP: Unzip the boots, place on their sides and fill with dirt, then start to place plants and some ivy. Zip them up, and then stand them up. If you try stuffing them with dirt and then try to place the flower and ivy, it doesn’t work well.

Think of your entryway or porch as an extension of your house and have fun with it! 

Items Needed:
Wooden bench, or an old chair. If you can find a pair and put a little table in the middle that would also be a great look for a porch.
Sandpaper

Primer, if you are working over another color of paint

Paint. I used latex, and then sealed it.

Sealer

Boots of any type.

Colorful rain boots would look especially cute.

directions:
Make sure you aren’t going to use them again. Once you make that decision, drill holes in the bottom to allow the water to drain out.
If the boots have zippers, unzip them.

Place the boots on their sides, and fill them with dirt.

With the boots sideways, start placing plants and some ivy.

Zip them up if needed, then stand them up when they are finished.

Earth, Air, Fire, Water

April 30, 2014 by
Illustration by Diamond Vogel

The worldview of ancient peoples often included a set of classical elements in describing the very essence of matter. Earth, Air, Fire, and Water came to symbolize the irreducible powers of the planet.

What could three creative talents do in terms of translating these primordial concepts into the most organic of color palettes?

Let’s see what happens when an award-winning theatrical set designer, a tattoo artist, Omaha Magazine’s creative director, and the color pros from Diamond Vogel use that company’s online Envision Color Visualizer tool to “paint” their inspiration.

Photo-Contest---Earth

“Brown, beige, clay. These are the colors of earth. We have gone beneath the surface to explore what lies below by choosing minerals and gemstones as our inspiration. The soft gold in the stairwell will refract light in contrast to the rich, blue-green of the walls. Entering the bedroom you find the unexpected element of a green ceiling. Remember that ceilings are your “fifth wall.” They offer a very effective, additional field of color. The complementary color on the bedroom wall is Diamond Vogel’s interpretation of Pantone’s 2014 Color of the Year—Radiant Orchid. All of these colors come together and are grounded by the richly hued earth tones of both the carpet and the light beige trim.”

Towanda Marks, Pam McCarthy,and Judy Nowak
The Diamond Vogel Team

Photo-Contest---Wind

“Air? You’ve got to be kidding! What the heck am I supposed to do with that which you can’t see? As it turns out, the answer was right under my nose all along. Glancing down at my drafting table I saw the color palette I had chosen for designing our production of Boeing-Boeing. This farcical comedy set in 1962 features a swinging bachelor who juggles a gaggle of what were then called “stewardesses.” I had selected a somewhat subdued and breezy, ‘60s-themed collection of hues (think Marimekko design mixed with a bit of early Warhol) to evoke an airy, almost weightless feel for the era when jet air travel was still new, exotic, and…well, downright sexy.” 

Jim Othuse
Scenic and Lighting Designer, Omaha Community Playhouse

Photo-Contest---Fire

“When contemplating my assigned element, my mind immediately went to thoughts of enjoying the ambiance of a cozy fire surrounded by low-light candles enveloping me in a serene, flickering glow. It instantly evokes an aura of home, warmth, and safety. As a tattoo artist, I approached the room as I would a tattoo. I chose a combination of colors that compliment each other to create a beautiful and unique canvas. With the element of fire, I thought of reds, oranges, and yellows. I used them here to create a room that feels pleasant, mellow, and comforting…much like a relaxing evening in front of the fireplace.”

Johnna McCreary
Tattoo artist and co-owner, Liquid Courage Tattoos

Photo-Contest---Water

“My aquatic inspiration came from Pantone’s 2013 color of the year—Emerald. More importantly—and a lot dearer to my heart—is the fact that this is the assortment of colors that my wife, Trisha, and I are using to prepare a nursery as we await the birth of our first child. Clean lines and cleaner palettes are found throughout our home, so I’ve reflected that theme with gray-ish surfaces that exist only to ground and add “oomph” to the brighter, more vibrant hues surrounding them. We’ll be adding coral-tinted accents in throw pillows and other soft elements to punctuate the room with some “pop.” Come late September, the nursery will be the center of activity on so many much-anticipated (but probably sleepless) nights.”

John Gawley
Creative Director, Omaha Magazine

Re-Energized Lamp

November 14, 2013 by

This quick and easy project will shed new light on any vintage, past-its-prime or attic-dwelling lamp!

  • Using a good painter’s tape, protect the base and any other part of the lamp that will retain its original finish.
  • Rough up the surface a bit with sandpaper to make painting easier, or select a type of paint that works best for the lamp’s surface.
  • Paint away! I chose a hammered-metal brown for a dramatically different vibe.
  • Once the paint is dry, carefully remove the tape.
  • Choose a lampshade. I decided to go with a contrasting style, one that introduced additional coloring and texture. You can even mix and match shades from your existing lamps.

Insider’s Tip: Have you ever bought an inexpensive thrift store lamp just for the shade? You can sometimes save big money over store-bought lampshades this way, and the variety is endless.

 

Five Tips for Creating a Home Office

August 26, 2013 by

Your home office should be a place you want to be and to spend time in. By utilizing basic design principles to make it productive and inspiring, you can make sure you actually work when you’re working from home. Here are five tips for creating a home workspace.

Paint the walls a color that inspires you. Color can be used to soothe, stimulate, energize, or brighten—choose the mood you want in your workspace and select a paint color accordingly.

Buy a comfortable office chair. If you’re going to be spending a significant amount of time in your home office, choose a chair that has adjustable height, reclining seat back, armrests, a deep seat depth, and adjustable lumbar support.

Let the light in.  Good lighting is essential. Ideally you want as much natural daylight as possible. Natural light not only saves electrical energy, but it gives you more personal energy, too. The link between sunlight and vitamin D has been established for a long time, but the impact of natural lighting on mood continues to be studied.

Choose meaningful accessories.  Select personal items that motivate you to get work done. The natural look of plants provides a comfortable, relaxing touch to the office. Plants play a vital role in providing a pleasant and tranquil environment in which to move, work, or relax. Indoor plants can also help health, well-being, and productivity in the workplace.

Take control of your technology. Set computers, printers, and phones close to outlets so the cords can easily be hidden. Desks that come equipped with wire management grommets also ensure a clutter-free workspace.

Visit the All Makes showroom at 25th and Farnam streets in Omaha to see the latest office furniture and design trends on display. The All Makes team is trained to help you make design and furniture purchases that fit your office atmosphere, your work style, and your budget. 

Create the Perfect Study Room

August 16, 2013 by

It’s already hard enough to get kids to study when they’re at home. After all, they’ve just spent several hours at school, and all they want to do now is relax in front of the TV or play outside with their friends. But homework always comes first.

Most kids do their homework in their bedrooms, on the living room couch, or at the kitchen table. Yeah, that’s a bad idea. Their beds remind them of sleep; the couch reminds of them of watching TV (if they’re not already); and the kitchen table reminds them of eating. These locations are recipes for distraction. What they need is a designated study space in their home.

Have an extra room in the basement or a guest room that hasn’t been used in months? Turn it into a study room for your kids! A place where they can go that can help them focus on doing a good job on their homework, as well as finishing it before the next day’s bell, can help them bring home better report cards.

Here are some great tips for creating the perfect study room in your home:

  • Only use furniture that applies to what kids will need for studying—desks, supply bins, bookcases, lamps, a comfortable chair, and maybe even a beanbag chair for reading. Absolutely no TVs!
  • Paint the room with solid colors. Neutrals always work, but primary colors like red, yellow, or blue will keep them in “school mode.”
  • Use décor that continues the theme of studying and learning. A chalkboard or dry erase board would be good, as well as a wall clock. If you want more art as inspiration, find educational posters or search through Pinterest for other great decorating ideas.

Whatever you decide to do with this study room, just remember that the point is to help your kids focus.