DIY Birch Logs

DIY Birch Logs made out of recycled materials that can be found around the house

I recently thrifted a gorgeous bronze log holder and with Christmas right around the corner had the grand notion of displaying some decorative birch logs in it. To my surprise, they’re not cheap. After scouring the internet for options I came to the conclusion that the best way to get what I wanted for cheap would be to make it myself.

Materials I used:

  • Toilet Paper Rolls
  • Tissue Paper
  • Clear Tape
  • Scrap Paper
  • White, Black, Taupe, Brown and Grey Acrylic Paint

I started out by taping the toilet paper rolls together to get the perfect length. Don’t worry about the openings fitting snugly or keeping everything in a straight line. The more organic the look the better, it’ll help the logs have a realistic birch like appearance when everything is finished. To cover the ends of the toilet paper rolls I simply grabbed a piece of scrap paper, traced around the openings, cut them out and taped those bad boys on.

Once I was finished taping everything together I gave each “log” a generous coating of Mod Podge and began wrapping them with tissue paper. The trick to this is placing the tissue paper corner in the center of the log then gently rolling it up. The wrinklier in appearance the better!

After the Mod Podge was completely dried I began painting each log white. Usually I would prefer to use acrylic paint for this step but for the life of me I could not find it anywhere so I settled on the next best thing – chalk paint. Before it could fully dry I mixed my taupe (Ceramcoat – Sand Dune), grey (Ceramcoat – Hippo Grey), and brown (FolkArt – Brushed Bronze) paints together then randomly began to brush them on the log. I also painted the ends of each log with the taupe paint to give them a realistic look.

To tone down some of the color and the harsh lines I took some of my white paint and gently dabbed it over each log with a paper towel. While the paint was still wet I took some black paint on a stippling brush and painted some lines on the log to give it a more birch-like appearance. To blend everything out I used the remaining paint from my paper towel and dabbed it in the places that needed a little more dimension.

After arranging my new birch logs in my log holder I couldn’t help but think that something was missing so off I ran to my craft supply closet to find some festive ribbon and holiday berries.

I can’t help but sit back and stare at everything in awe. Who would have thought that I could accomplish making faux birch logs for free with just random items that I had laying around my house?

More Christmas DIY’s are coming,

Easy Upcycled Rustic Box

Last weekend I wanted to complete a DIY that was simple, stress-free, cheap and not too complicated. That’s when it hit me – I had some leftover stained skewers from a previous project and a empty box that was calling my name to transform into a decorative piece I could use on my hallway table. When everything was finished this project ended up costing me a whopping total of $0.00 which is a complete success in my book.

I began by measuring the length and width of my box and used a pair of needle nose pliers to snip each skewer to size. Once all my skewers were cut I started hot gluing them to the top of the box until I reached the end.

Not satisfied with how wonky and uneven the pieces were looking, I took the box out to my garage and sanded down the edges until everything lined up perfectly. I then hot glued 2 pieces to the sides of my freshly sanded box lid.

Now it was time to start working on the sides of the box lid. I ended up testing two ways to do it until I was satisfied with the finished look. At first I thought it would be easy to start from the bottom and work my way up but I did not like how it turned out so I ripped off the hot glued skewers and decided to start framing out the sides of the box lid first. This way looked 10x nicer.

I then began cutting my skewers to length ensuring to sand them down after each cut to avoid the look of jagged edges before hot gluing them onto the lid. Once completed with all 4 sides I put the lid back on the box and repeated this process on the bottom of the box.

For the final step I took some wood filler and gently pressed it into any of the gaps that were visible. Before it was fully dried I used my finger to remove any visible chunks of it that showed between the lines of the skewers. After it was completed I set it on my hallway table and styled it to my liking.

Once the price of wood comes down I plan on duping this $800.00 console table to use in my hallway. Stay tuned as I know it will be interesting trying to figure out how to do it.

Relaxing until next weekend,

Thrift Flip: Basic Metal Wreath to Boho Mirror Transformation

Ladies and Gentlemen, if I do say so myself – this right here had to of been one of the easiest DIY projects I’ve done in a long, long time. So easy in fact that I did the majority of it while laying in bed. (Yes, you read that right! My DIY obsessed self was fighting a stomach bug and yet that couldn’t even stop me from working on a project. That just goes to show how obsessed I am with keeping busy and letting my creative side run wild)

If you’d like to make something similar, here is a list of the supplies you will need:

*This post contains affiliate links. That means that if you make a purchase after clicking on a link I may earn a small commission at no extra cost to you. 

First I began by cutting the raffia paper ribbon into different lengths. I’m not all about perfection and didn’t want it to look too uniform once it was added. I then grabbed groups of three strands at a time and began looping them through the wreath base.

Many hours and re-runs of Psych later it was time to add the mirror. To begin I took out my trusty E6000 and applied a generous amount to the back of the wreath then lowered the mirror onto it as gently as I could.

It was at this time when I realized that I’d need something heavy to weigh it down with so I grabbed the closest thing to me which just so happened to be a box filled with my spoiled cats many toys. The whole time it was drying she’d walk by while giving me the side-eye and silently looking like she wanted to kill me for disturbing her prized possessions.

Once the E6000 was fully dried I used a heavy duty picture hanger to hang the mirror on the wall and “fluffed” the raffia over it to disguise the unsightly gold color that was poking out.

Logging off until next time,

Bookshelf to Shoe Storage Transformation

At this point in time I’m pretty confident that each and every one of us has owned this bookshelf from Walmart at some point in our lives. Mine has moved with me from house to house and even somehow managed to make the cut when I moved cross country from good ol’ sunny Florida to Texas. For years its been sitting in my garage collecting dust and becoming a homey high rise to all the spiders that have decided to make it their own. When I was working on my last project I noticed it out of the corner of my eye and after many years of neglect I had the perfect idea to transform it into the shoe cabinet of my dreams.

To help you get started, here is a list of the supplies you will need:

*This post contains affiliate links. That means that if you make a purchase after clicking on a link I may earn a small commission at no extra cost to you. 

Before even beginning the project I sat down and put together a realistic budget with the notion that in no way did I want to spend an arm and a leg to make over a $20 run down bookshelf. In the end it needed a lot of work and prices started adding up but I’m pleased so say this project came in at well under $100.

If I’ve learned even one thing from my last furniture transformation it’s that herringbone anything will kick your ass and make you the most frustrated you’ve been in your entire life. Did this stop me from attempting to do it again? Nope! Apparently I’m a glutton for punishment so I decided to do it again on this one. In my head I thought if I were to tackle what I thought would be the most unpleasant part of the transformation then this project would be easy sailing from here on out… boy was I wrong. I began to quickly saw my paint stir sticks and glue on my 6 inch pieces on top of the bookshelf for what felt like an eternity until I was completely finished. As you can tell from the above photo the paint stir sticks I used had a lot of gaps between them so I had to once again use lots of wood filler to remedy this situation. You know what that means? More sanding is in my future. Yay!

I used so much wood filler at this point I’m kicking myself in the ass for not buying stock in it.

Now was the time for my favorite part – Sanding! I started out with my trusty sanding block then moved my project outside to bask in the gorgeous weather we were having that day while switching to a more powerful sander.

I then grabbed my edge banding and trusty iron then spent the next 10-15 minutes applying it to the top of the bookshelf. This is where the project really started to take place and began to look somewhat presentable.

Once that was completed I used my wood finishing cloths to add some color to the top and disguise some of the wood filler that was still visible no mater how much sanding I did.

I’m going to be real with you here. This is what I should have done when I first started this project. In order to add the legs to this piece I had to flip it upside down on it’s freshly finished top and I was stressing the whole time thinking it was somehow going to get ruined – it didn’t, thankfully.

When it came time to cut the doors I went in thinking I had it all figured out and it would go smoothly. The wood I chose was on the cheaper side and splintered a lot after each cut. It also had holes that needed to be filled with wood filler to disguise them. (No hardwood floors were harmed in the making of this project. I chose to take the pictures using them as a backdrop since my garage is a total disaster and would scare people off at the mere sight of it) I also added the L shaped brackets to the corner of each door to secure it. In the haste to get the project done I did not photograph it.

After I completed my doors I took them outside and gave them a generous spray of black plaint. Once completed and dried, I brought them back inside and covered them with the black wood grain contact paper. Why did I do this if I just spray painted them? The truth is, the doors were hideous and the wood grain popping through made them look like they were fished out of the bottom bin of the clearance section at Dollar General. This actually worked in my favor because it was similar to the wood grain texture on the rest of the bookshelf. All I had to do was apply a piece over each door, use a carpenter knife to cut it down the middle and then gently wrap it like a present around to the other side.

I then added the door magnets to the top underside of the bookshelf and began stapling my embroidery fabric to the inside of each door. As you’re doing this remember to pull the fabric taut so there is no visible rippling from the other side of it. You may also want to iron out any visible wrinkles because once you’ve stapled it to the door it’s going to be the first thing you notice when the doors are closed.

After I added my doors I noticed something was off and my bookshelf was looking wobbly and like it’s seen better days. I spent a good 30 minutes inspecting every square inch of it until I discovered that somehow the particle board next to the camlock underneath it had chipped it off. I ended up covering it with a generous amount of wood glue and putting a small piece of wood over it to give it some strength.

On to the final part of the project – adding the drawer pulls. I began by measuring the door, dividing the number in half then subtracting the size of the pulls to get the exact distance I needed to drill. I felt like I was back in high school trying to figure out a math equation with as many times as I went back and forth double-checking my calculations to make sure everything lined up evenly. When everything was finished I pushed it back into my entryway, put my shoes in it and began staging the top of the piece.

Signing off until the next time,